(This is part of the “Ask An Astrologer” series, where I occasionally try to demonstrate how getting a consultation can genuinely help and provide real guidance, using real-life examples. Want to find out for yourself? There’s a link to my e-mail at the bottom of this blog entry. Write me… and don’t be afraid to ask for my best rate, either).
“Can I please get a free sample reading? Thanks!”
First of all: thanks for writing! Looking at my Google Analytics each month shows people read my stuff… but actually being compelled to write me about it? that means something.
Have you ever gotten a free sample of something from the supermarket? You know: there’s someone there with a tray asking you if you’d like to try Sunny Leone’s new and improved pizza rolls (or whatever). Personally, I love that sort of thing. Go to the store on the right day and you can almost assemble a free meal out of that sort of thing. And of course Mama Leone wins too, because quite often you’ll end up buying a whole package of those pizza rolls. Frankly I’d love it if I could market my services that way. Unfortunately I can’t for a couple of very good reasons.
First of all: readings are not a uniform product cranked out by a factory. The reason the free samples at the supermarket work is because there’s a freezer full of packages of Sunny Leone’s pizza rolls ready for people to buy and take home.
Just as no two people or to birth charts are exactly alike, neither are two readings. Doing a proper reading for someone is not simply a matter of grabbing the next package off the shelf. Doing a proper free reading sample for someone would be, if you’ll forgive the analogy, more like a surgeon who sits down and talks to you and does some tests and reads some X-rays and then wheels you into surgery with an anesthetist… and then only takes out 10% of your tumor and asked if you’d like to pay to have the rest of it removed.
There are places and people on the internet that offer free readings. In my experience these invariably fall into one of two categories: a computer-generated report that has none of the skill and new ones that are proper reading from a proper astrologer would give you… or, frankly, a bunch of generic nonsense designed to either flatter or frighten you into sending money.
Here is an example of a free computer generated reading, based on my own birth chart:
You appear gentle and soft, and you act rather reserved with others until you know them well and feel it is safe to be open with them. You have a strong need for emotional security and a sense of belonging, and are deeply attached to the past: your heritage, roots, family, cherished friends, familiar places, etc. Making radical changes or moves away from what is known and safe can be very painful and difficult for you. You tend to cling and hold on to people, memories, possessions of personal or sentimental significance. Having a home, a safe haven, is very important to you.
Sun in Sagittarius:
You are a gambler and an adventurer at heart, one who loves to take risks, to discover and explore new worlds, and to take the untried path rather than the safe, reliable one. You are an independent soul, freedom-loving, and often very restless. You need a lifestyle that provides opportunities for travel, movement, change, and meeting new people. A steady routine which offers much in the way of security but little in the way of space and freedom is odious to you.
Wow… both highly generic and completely contradictory! That’s some sort of an achievement, isn’t it? Certainly there are worse things though… like this sample of the other kind of free reading that I’ve just more or less made up based on the examples I’ve seen:
“I can see here that you have some questions about your life. The stars are saying you are in a conflicted time: some things are going well for you and some are a concern. BUT I MUST WARN YOU that you are about to be the victim of an affront or an outright attack from an unforeseen source. This will occur within the next month. Send me a payment now and we’ll look into that plus all the other UNFORESEEN PERILS that will face you very soon! Also: FREE WINNING LOTTERY NUMBERS with every reading!”
Well hello, Fraud.
So: as much as I’d like to provide you with a free sample reading, that just isn’t how it works. But if you’re interested in my services? Here are some testimonials. Get back to me if something like that works for you.
Venus entered Sagittarius today and stays there until November 11th. As with all planetary positions, how this affects you will depend on the individual details of your birth chart. Nonetheless, there is also a certain vibe that that comes with any planet in any Sign that tends to hang over us all. Like for example — yes, Venus in Scorpio has a certain serious intensity to it that would have had some effect on your human relations.
Venus in Sagittarius may have a more “light” and “fun” reputation than Venus in Scorpio does, and for many of you that will be a relief. So hey, there couldn’t possibly be a down side to this placement, could there?
Um, well… maybe a sing-along will clear that up.
(To the tune of “Theme From Bonanza”)
In bounced a girl with her hair in a curl – she Saggie!
If she goes home with anyone here
I think it’s gonna be me!
Three drinks in and she’s loaded for sin – that’s Saggie!
A suggestive wink and one more drink
And to my place we go!
Hey she’s gone, left by dawn
After she rocked my world!
I thought we’d wed, where was my head? She’s Saggie!
I should have known my chances were blown
When I told her what to do…
For most astrologers, the bulk of our business comes not from writing, but from doing readings for people. I’ve always had a bit of a problem with that term — “consultations” would be a little more accurate.
“…Choosing Matthew was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made as it pertains to authentic Practical Astrology. Matthew’s expertise is in the 1 percentile because Matthew combines his extensive knowledge of Astrology with his acute and astute intuition; it is razor sharp. Moreover, he is able to employ the practical and useful aspects of the science to ones daily life...
Anyone who has the opportunity to have services rendered to by Mr. Matthew Currie will be well-serviced beyond any expectations. Thank you Matthew for the practical and outstanding information you have sooo generously imparted me. God Bless.”-AP, Atlanta GA
In some ways, getting a reading is a bit like talking to a counselor — yet not. It involves going into detail about your concerns and opportunities (as talking to a counselor does), but in my experience it’s a lot more effective than sitting around a counselor’s office talking for three months with the occasional “tell me more about that” from the person who’s there to help you.
“My reading with you was a real eye-opener. Thank you for the accurate results and the practical guidance.”
Furthermore, a regular counselor doesn’t have access to your transits as an astrologer does. Your transits are what determine the things that are happening to you now, how long the current situation will last, when things will improve, and when opportunities to make things better will arise.
“(Matthew) helped me get past a sticking point in a career situation that was THE piece of the puzzle I was trying to find – not just for this week’s crisis, but perhaps for my entire adult working life. He provided other insights that really made sense, too, as far as my personal life. I would recommend him without hesitation for both the client well versed in astrology lingo and the seeker who isn’t that familiar.”
-RS, New Mexico
We can cover nearly anything, as you know if you’re read my “Ask An Astrologer” series here. Your love life (or lack thereof), your work and career (or lack thereof), children and family relations… pretty much anything you’d like to know about.
“If you’re into astrology and you would like an information packed, interesting, intuitive reading, check out Matthew Currie.”
So: any of that got your attention? Want to see what a reading can do for you? Write me for details!
“I had a reading with Matthew when I was going through my divorce. He was so accurate in his ability to relate a timeline of outcomes and resolutions it was uncanny! I found him to be thorough, courteous and professional but quite down to earth and easy to talk with. I now consult with him when I am facing any major event in my life. He is the most intuitive and compassionate person I have ever met. I am so glad I made that first appointment for a consultation!”
-RS, North Carolina
Ever gone to a large family gathering and gotten stuck sitting at the children’s table? You know: the place where they park all the kids to keep them out of the way of the grown-ups so that actual adult conversations can happen? If you’re a huge fan of children in general, this can be an enjoyable experience — but if you get stuck at that table at every family gathering, it won’t take long for you to get the impression that you’re being left out of all the important stuff… and in fact, you’re likely to miss out on a lot of the most important news.
Still: children are the future, yadda yadda, and it’s best to have at least enough of a passing familiarity with them to make sure none of the little darlings are breaking things or starting a fire. In that spirit, let’s acknowledge the minor aspects and then get back to drinking and talking about sex, as adults do.
There are lots of minor aspects, which all come from dividing the circle into ever-smaller pieces, and the more you divide the circle up after the major aspects, the less effect those new aspects have. For example, the semi-square and the sesquiquadrate (think of them as the “half a square” and “the square and a half”). They have roughly the same effect as a square, but are much less pronounced and less troublesome. Any proper square will have a much more obvious observable effect on your personality, but these two can show up as minor annoyances.
Two of the minor aspects stick out a bit more as far as their importance and usefulness, though: the quintile (one-fifth of a circle, or 72 degrees) and the septile (one-seventh of a circle). The quintile represents a relationship between two planets that takes effort to bring out, but once you do it reveals you have a talent for it. You can also have a bi-quintile (144 degrees of separation) which acts the same way. A quintile is kind of like that guy you know who can write reasonably well, and is always talking about that great novel he wants to write… but he never seems to get any further with it than talking about it.
The septile has a lot to do with fate, destiny, and the deeper meaning of life. This would make them a gold mine of astrological spirituality if it weren’t for the fact that every other aspect out there is a lot louder and more demanding, and the septiles are hard to define in hard-and-fast terms anyway. If you based an entire astrology consultation on septiles, there would be a lot of hand-waving and talk about Karma, but nothing of actual practical use coming out of the meeting. If you see a lot of septiles in someone’s birth chart without a lot of other stuff going on, you may be dealing with someone who would rather chant, pray, and cast a spell to win the lottery than go out and actually get a job in order to make money, for example. Furthermore: the septile is one-seventh of a circle — that is, about 51 degrees 25 minutes 43 seconds. Since 360 degrees doesn’t divide evenly by seven (360 divided by 7 equals 51.428571428571…), this aspect can be pretty maddening for those who enjoy exactness and precision.
Want more astrological minutiae? There are also noviles, vigintiles, quattuorvigintiles, undeciles, semi-deciles, quindeciles, and a horde of other really minor aspects… and more than one astrologer has referred to them all as “The Futiles.” To be honest with you… professional astrologers don’t really need to worry about them much, so you probably shouldn’t either. Just keep them quiet at their own table until their bedtime, and then we’ll get this party started, all right…?