The picture above was taken for The Poetry of Space class that I gave in Petaluma, California in 2001. To my upper left is a three-foot diameter, rotating celestial sphere. It demonstrates the relationship of the astrological houses to the planets and stars, as well as the daily rotation of the Earth and the movements of the Moon, Sun and planets. To the far right is a four-foot diameter rotating, wooden astrological chart used for teaching groups and in private consultations. Center stage is my 12" Meade Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope. In the background is a gravitational collection of stars called the Sombrero Galaxy. Most of the points of light in this old, low resolution photograph (see current high resolution photo) are stars as large or larger than our sun; in fact our entire solar system to scale is smaller than the smallest dot of light in this photograph. The dark band crossing the center of the photo is a lane of dust 600 quadrillion miles in diameter, rotating once every 250 million years around the galaxy’s core. It appears dark because it blocks the light of hotter stars behind it. If the three trillion stars in this immense spiral galaxy were each a grain of sand, altogether they could cover a football field to a depth of 6 inches. Light—which can circle the earth 8 times a second or travel to the moon in less than a second and a half—takes 28 million years to get here from the Sombrero Galaxy! The light that we see from it today and in this photo started on its way here long before we came down from the trees. It is so far away that if we were already at a place in space where it looked to our naked eye as large as it does in this photo, and we then sped towards it in our fastest rocket, after one million years of traveling towards it at that speed—it would not appear any larger!
Like so many before me, I came to astrology as an unbeliever. Straight out of college, I thought I knew it all. My best friend, however, had this uncanny luck in guessing the month and even the hour that strangers—usually strange women that I brought around—were born. At first I just thought that his lucky guessing streak was improbable; but as our relationship continued, his merely improbable luck became unbelievable. And so, like many before me, I decided to investigate this strange phenomena.
I soon found that there was more to astrology than chance. In 1971 I started attending Isabelle Hickey’s classes at the Hippocrates Health Institute (where Anne Wigmore grew her wheat grass) in Boston. Issie was the matriarch of American spiritual astrology, and under her tutelage I came to see astrology for the ancient and profound body of wisdom that it is. It spoke to the mathematician, musician, scientist, poet, psychologist and spiritual being within me. Naturally oriented to her philosophy, I took to Issie's classes like a duck to water, and she became my mentor and teacher. That was an early step in a life-long spiritual quest that brought me to California in 1974. I have lived here ever since, 20 miles north of San Francisco.
Even for an astrologer my journey has been unusual. Having received one of the finest scientific and liberal arts educations in the world at Caltech, Brandeis and Harvard, I turned my back on becoming an astrophysicist and began exploring myself. In 1974 I headed west in a Wise Potato Chip truck with mahogany-framed sliding glass picture windows, real wood walls, skylights, a pot-bellied stove and a 3-foot celestial sphere in the window. I smoked grass, dropped acid, visited and lived on ashrams, courted gurus, and went through decades of various therapies, including classical analysis, Primal, Gestalt, Rolfing and Reichian. Along the way I practiced or became disciplined in yoga, Tai Chi, meditation, past life regressions, rebirthing, Silva Mind Control, Scientology (only two weeks there, I left running!), enlightenment intensives, the Human Awareness Institute (HAI), and David Deida’s work. From 1996 to 2000 I fell deeper and deeper into my humanity with the teacher Saniel Bonder, finally awakening into my body and consciousness through his radical “Waking Down” process. For a few years I practiced Core Energetics with Siegmar and Cornelia Gerken, including an intensive in the south of France with their teacher, John Pierrakos, M.D., a student of Wilhelm Reich. I then spent a number of years as an enthusiastic Buddhist meditator, taking meditation retreats with Adyashanti at Asilomar and Mt. Madonna, or with other teachers at Spirit Rock in Marin. Then in 2011 I gave up meditating to return to my childhood roots and loves of playing the trombone and chess: my meditation on and in life.
So I have spent my life courting—and finally marrying—my whole self. It is this being who now offers you his ragged but somewhat integrated self in the hopes that he may shed some light on that most difficult and worthy task each of us has before us: the art of living.
In my readings I create a safe, judgment-free space that allows your being and your truth to inform us both as to who you really are. To this end I try to abandon what I think is true about you, including astrological facts and ideas that stand between me and the truth of your being.
Astrology for me is thus a starting place from which to penetrate and to reveal your truth, not an end in itself. I use it as a springboard to meet you so deeply that you meet yourself in a place you haven't yet integrated. I am here to give you messages for your soul that can change your life.
A thousand faces flow past me,
A thousand voices clamoring to be heard:
The stories of my life:
Which mask shall I wear in this moment?
Which voice shall I claim as my own
in this moment?
In this moment
I am a river.
I am the watcher of the river.
Grabbing no mask
They are all my own.
Choosing no voice
I see them all
flowing through me
—by Carl Woebcke
Your complete astrology reading woven throughout a personalized, 342-page fine art book based on the recipient's birth time, birth date and birth place.
© Carl Woebcke: About the Author, 1991-2013. All rights reserved.