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Do You Love Me? - The Astrology of Relationships
MISPA Books - ISBN 978-0993169601
Throughout our life we are involved in many relationships. We have relationships with lovers, our families, friends, bosses and colleagues. As astrologers we look to the heavens to comprehend the nature of these connections. We want to understand why we have fallen in love with a particular person and why that love then withered and died, or why we have formed lifelong friendships with certain people. We want to know what makes others tick, what they feel about us, why we feel the way we do about them. We want to know the answer to the question ‘Do you love me?’ Synastry is the technique by which we can gain answers to these questions.
In this book, John Green teaches the astrology student how to compare our charts with those of others in order to gain an understanding of the various types of relationships we encounter in our own life and those of our clients. Based on a series of online seminars given by John to students, the text explains how by looking into the psychological nature of these relationships we can gain deep insights into ourselves, learn about the patterns we fall into within relationships and make changes to improve our interactions with others.
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Review by Victor Olliver - The Astrological Journal - May/June 2015
As in all other areas astrological (or anything else for that matter), synastry can only be as good as the practitioner. No matter what gold awaits discovery in the chart of two people in love (or hate), it will lie unseen if the delver has the heart and prejudices of a 14-year-old troll. Happily, Do You Love Me? is plainly the work of a worldly sage who has long worn the t-shirt. Leaving aside the astrology for a moment, this book is imbued with a sensitive, experienced spirit that’s non-judgemental in the delicate separation of strands (or leather straps or rusty chains) of intimacy for the purposes of naming. The instinctive pursuit is to understand. The all-too-common and counter-productive tendency to label things black and white is very efficiently cordoned. He wisely cautions against the hope that synastry will find us the perfect relationship.
This makes John Green’s book perfect for students of synastry. Actually, students helped him create it. Do You Love Me? is based on a series of online seminars on synastry that Green gave last summer. The question-and-answer format arises from queries put by seekers to Green. This clever approach bestows the appearance of a lively spontaneity missing from so many astrology texts. Yet if this appearance, at times, is anything-goes, the truth is anything-but.
Tight, ordered structure is our implied guide to good synastry practice. Having briefly surveyed the nature of relationships and their countless forms, he proceeds to focus on the natal chart as a starting point for analysis. This getting-to-know-you stage is vital to building a picture of each individual’s wants and needs and to the later question of mutual compatibilities (or not, as the case may be). Green’s exposition of comparing charts is disarmingly straightforward – dealing with cross aspects and house overlays, for instance. Later chapters examine outer planets, and transits and progressions, in synastry. The chapter on other types of relationship (such as with a country) illustrates the vast scope of this methodology.
Real-life charts are explored. The passionate, bejewelled, presumed nightmare that was the Burton-Taylor ménage is a romantic abattoir of squares and Sun-Neptune collisions in their synastry chart – but we also learn why and how these two glitzy addicts served as each other’s opiate of choice.
Green practices modern psychological astrology – he thanks the stellar likes of Liz Greene and Lynn Bell in his Acknowledgements for their inspiration and help. Inevitably, then, he weaves Jung and the work of other exponents of psychoanalysis into our understanding of inter-personal dynamics - such as defining the nature of projection in one-to-ones. A few traditionalists may sniff at that. A few others may question the generous 10° orb he allows synastry aspects – but these are details for others to lose sleep over.
I particularly liked the inventive ways in which Green brings to life his chart insights. Anyone who has found themselves in a “Neptunian mess” of a relationship will appreciate its literary expression - A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Love’s fantasy’s lost!
Thinking of which, Green is right to devote much space to love. Love (or its mirage) is usually the spur that brings in the clients. Why, he even tests my sensibilities with a love tattoo on the front cover - in other circumstances, a sure sign of a misspent youth and last seen on a biker’s flabby arm. It’s a telling image: a red heart run through with a sword, flanked by Mars and Venus. He is also wise to eschew cookbook formulae. Guides have their place, but cannot substitute for eventual immersion in the complex, orchestral chart work proper.
Do You Love Me? is destined a very long stay as a student must-read.
© Copyright 2015 The Astrological Association of Great Britain