Astrology and the Games People Play: A Tool for Self Understanding in Work and Relationships

Chapter 1: The Three Spheres of Consciousness

The magician tosses up a ball,
a second, then a third!
Now all three gloves
hang suspended and pulsing
dancing like one
before the enchanter's eye.

Consciousness is a lot like juggling. The juggler is a mental magician deep within our psyche whose deft energy impels various thoughts before our inner eye. Different images, memories, voices ascend into our awareness only to fade as other images and memories take their moment on the mind's center stage. Often these spheres of juggled consciousness are intense ''tape'' fragments from our past, common phrases that our parents used, scenes from how we were raised, images from our early childhood recalling happy or sad moments. As this intense juggling of psychological material flashes like a kaleidoscope before us , we can sense our emotions fluctuate as we relive old feelings. . How well we can control the performance of this mental juggler determines our ability to focus our mind (be mindful ) , have self control and succeed in directing the growth of our life.

Popular psychologists have studied this spontaneous fluctuation of mental material and call these juggled spheres of consciousness ''ego states." Each of these ego states is organized by an implicit ''psychic attitute," a cohesive theme of concern or perspective that is the common denominator. While the general scope of these ego states may in fact be quite diverse, the general substance of their psychic attitudes'' seems to fall into three basic areas: Parental attitudes and parental figures; Rational or Adult attitudes of objectivity in perceiving emotions and environment; 3. Childhood memories and recollections which reflect key painful and pleasurable attitudes of our earliest experiences.

These three spheres of consciousness can be easily identified by referring to them simply as Parent, Adult and Child, using capitals to show that they are specific, proper nouns representing a psychological ego state. Through the metaphor of the juggler in our psyche we see mental health in terms of developing good balance and smooth control of the psychological energy flow between these three ego states. This harmony is manifested through the balanced expression of our personality.

Consider, again, the image of the juggler/magician and imagine him with his hands full, struggling to perform with the mental equivalent of a basketball, a soccer ball and a bowling ball. Understandably he is having trouble keeping them flowing in a balanced rhythm. Now if we look at these three mental balls as ego states, it is easy to see that the bowling ball ego state is ''over weighted'' and is the cause of the juggler's difficulties. The trick is to determine whether the Parent, Adult or Child is the bowling ball! Obviously the ego state with the most psychological baggage is the source of the problems.

While the magician analogy is dramatically simple, it illustrates the key idea of balance. The task of self therapy with this book or any psychological work with a counselor will center on discovering which mental state is overly ''weighted'' (has a lot of conflicting mental issues) and is causing personal pain. The therapeutic job of evaluating these positive or negative influences can take some time and money because the process is slow and introspective.

Transactional Astrology can help you to quickly understand the nature of your ego states and gain self awareness, evolution and self healing. It does this by enabling you to determine the attitudes of the key mental players in the your own inner games of love and life. Specifically it graphically shows you the astrologically ''weighted'' make up of your Parent, Adult and Child. of the A Transactional chart will reveal a focused picture different positive and negative polarities within your personality. This will enable you to discover and then start working on those emotionally difficult areas. The goal is to heal your inner wounds, to clear away the debris of the past and initiate positive growth in the present. Love and its problems can be helped by understanding these inner areas of our psychological landscape. Stronger self insights and improved communication skills are a part of this healing process.

The key to using this powerful self-help tool is to learn how easy it is to translate the three ego states of popular psychology into the astrological concepts of Transactional Analysis. The essential building block is to know that time, date and place of your birth, or of the individual you are analyzing. It is necessary to have accurate astrological data which can be secured by having a computer chart prepared for you by an astrological service. If you want to create your own chart materials you can follow the directions provided in appendix A at the back of this book. This vital astrological information will provide you with the means for uncovering surprising psychological insights.


The first step in Transactional Astrology is to create a basic three tier ''ego sphere'' diagram or chart which is the foundation of all other evaluations An ''ego sphere'' is the Transactional equivalent of an ego state. A focusing planet is used to symbolize each of the three ego spheres and enables astrological information to be used in a new way. Saturn and its sign represents the Parent, the Sun and its sign the Adult and the Moon and its sign the Child. Now lets see how it works.

Get to Know Your Neighbor in Spirit: John Lennon

Imagine that John Lennon has moved to your neighborhood and you wanted to get to know what he was like and how best to strike up a friendship with him. You could hear him practicing his guitar and he seemed like a person you would like to get to know. You decide to erect a Transactional Chart to gain perspective.

The first step is to get John's birth data. John was a Libra and was not shy about giving out his birthday, October 9,1940, 06:30 pm, EST Liverpool. From this you can erect his traditional natal see Figure 3.

John Lennon's birth chart is a complex challenge for the most experienced astrologer. ' There are so many complicated configurations that it is a puzzle how even to begin an interpretation. However lets forego traditional astrology and see how we can pull information from John's large wheel to start constructing the three circles of a Transactional chart.

The key is to take the positions of the Sun, Moon and Saturn in the natal chart and highlight them as John's basic ego spheres, Parent, Adult and Child, see Figure 4. These focus planets show us his Transactional Astrology chart and even these the first step in developing bare bones have a very rewarding tale to tell. This simple diagram represents the archetypal energy each ego sphere is generating. Each planet's primary ''psychic attitude'' is filtered by the specific sign in which it resides. The combined energy of planet and sign is the basic essence of the ego sphere. The three spheres show the the basics of personality structure.

Lets go through this basic three tier format to reveal how much we already know about John Lennon. John's Parent planet, Saturn, is in Taurus. This means that John's Parent ego sphere has a basic stubborn, realistic and materialistic attitude. This will give his Parent great persistence and stamina. Taurus is aligned with (or ruled by) Venus and likes pleasure, wealth and possessions. Whether or not there is money, there may be a fear of poverty. (Remember John's famous quip, ''I'm down to my last 50,000 quid.") There is a lot of creative and sexual energy in Taurus to which Saturn gives form and content. Creative projects can lead to peace of mind. There is the definite tendency to be extremely possessive with loved ones and jealousy can be a problem. There is a quality of having to see it to believe it, the earthy quality of Taurus and the structuring qualities of Saturn makes for a person who likes to ''see it in black and white."

John's Adult or Sun Ego Sphere is in Libra. Libra is nothing if not charming, artistic and diplomatic. There is tremendous artistic potential for the love of beauty is a key to the Libran personality. Harmonious, looking for a good time there is a love of the good life, of parties and social events. Romance is paramount to a Libra, for the world loves lovers and Libra love.
There is an ability to work in partnerships, both in work and marriage. Judgement is sharp, for Libra is the scales, though sometimes the scales wobble and some indecisiveness can be experienced. There is an added artistic feature in that both John's Sun and Saturn, Parent and Adult , are ruled by Venus, this adds to artistic temperament and need to create.

John's Child or Moon Sphere is in Aquarius. This Childis emotionally detached and there is the feeling of being an observer, of being ahead of your time. Personal originality may cut you off from the herd. This Child is very liberated sexually.
The creative energy is very strong. Idealistic and broad minded, there are strong humanitarian feelings to want to embrace the world. This Child can change its mind suddenly and become very cold and emotionally distant. The mother is often unusual, if not an outright non-conformist.

These three ego sphere descriptions give us the basic frame work of understanding our new ''neighbor'', John Lennon. even at this very fundamental level of personality study we can discern the charming, dramatic, artistic, and humanitarian qualities which we are also aware of endeared John to his fans. Yet also note that the qualities of stubbornness, isolation, depression, and neediness which formed the shadow side of his personality.

A more complete Transactional Astrological analysis of John Lennon's personal psychology will be created in the next chapter when we add the rest of the planets John's ego sphere chart. Consider the three circles of the ego spheres to be a skeleton and the planets will later supply the flesh. In combination they give us a complete and dramatic visual representation of the inner dynamics of this famous Beatle.

How to create a First Step, ''Bare Bones'' Transactional chart

Following the example used with John Benson, get out your own astrological chart or that of a friend you are interested in knowing better. Locate Saturn, the Sun and the Moon and make a three ring Parent, Adult and Child diagram based on noting Saturn and its sign: Sun and its sign, and the Moon and its sign.


1) Using the information in Appendix A of this book get a natal chart generated by a computer service or create your own using reference books on astrology at local library.
Locate your Saturn and its sign. Place it in the Parent Sphere in the blank Ego Spheres Chart, see Figure 5. (You may want to xerox this page to have several black charts to experiment with.) Be sure to include its degree and sign (i.e. Saturn 13 Taurus for John Lennon) Then look up the Sun and put it in the center circle along with its degree and sign. Finally put the Moon in the Child circle with its degree and sign.

2) Turn to Appendix B in the back of this book and find the table of definitions for the ''Major Archetypes'' Look up the meaning of Saturn and its sign.
Look up the meaning of the Sun and its sign.
Look up the meaning of the Moon and its sign.

3) Write them down in a note book. Respond to where you agree and disagree with the general meanings given in the ''Major Archetypes.'' Fine tune these definitions by adding your own insights into the meanings of the ego spheres. Be sure to ground your observations with concrete examples such as ''This Parent would strike a child," or ''This adult is warm and would give great hugs.''

4) Parent work: Get in an environment where you can relax uninterrupted and let your mind drift back over the events of your life. As you remember different situations, monitor the different types of interior monologue, pick out the phrases that most remember as hearing from hour parents. My advice is to get a small tape recorder and tape your thoughts as they come to you. Review the tape, edit your comment and write down those which you sense to be significant. How do these old tapes affect you now?

5) Adult work: Who was an adult role model for you? Was it a parent, a relative, someone in a friend's family. Maybe it was a sports figure, a public figure, a film star. Take some time and list key adults in your life. Have you changed adult heroes often? Write these thoughts down.

6) Child work: What kinds of play did you experience as a child? Take some time to remember your earliest memories and what you liked to do. Again, us a tape recorded if you can to capture your reminisces. Who determined what you played? What was ''fun'' for you? Who did you play with? Did you have a favorite teddy bear or toy? Who antagonized you the most? What was your favorite food? Write a summary of the highs and lows your Child's experience.

At this point you have successfully created a basic Transactional diagrams used the ''Major archetypes'' to scope the general disposition of each ego state and have personalized it with your own comments about the prevailing attitudes of your Parent, Adult have responded to the exercises dealing and Child. Finally you with personal monitoring, thus beginning to build a meaningful note book whose process will enhance you healing process.

You are now ready to proceed to the next level of the Transactional chart construction, putting the planets in -- which provides a meaningful, simple and accurate means to weigh the spheres. Or, you might say which is the Power Sphere. Remember the goal is to know where personal strengths and weakness are, where you are healthy and where you are toxic. Stay grounded in your reflections by keeping your notebook of your thoughts, dreams, and memories as you work through this book. You'll reap the terrific rewards that await you when you use this process for insight and growth. We are all explorers in the quest for self discovery.

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