I think it’s about time where I write one of those ‘reminder posts’ as a lot of the important posts are starting to get buried and unnoticed in the archives. Let’s not talk about Chinese metaphysics but esoteric fields like astrology as a whole, or Chinese astrology rather which goes beyond just a few popular methods you often hear about.
There is a small resurgence in interest for astrology. Most people don’t know what to expect, how to approach it, or how to best make sure of the information given to you. The motivation behind is post is to help newcomers get a sense of what you should do when trying to apply astrology into your lives.
A lot of legitimate practitioners face the same challenge of trying to convey our message to our clients in a clear manner. It’s not just about the message from the astrological chart itself, but also the spirit in which astrology was developed. Chinese astrology is more just about having your fortune or future told, and is only able to perceive BaZi this way, the client is definitely losing out.
I think we can all agree that astrology, or any other Chinese metaphysics technique in general, is something people turn to when they encounter some rough patch. You’ll hardly see people turning to these esoteric fields when things are going well in their lives.
When people do come for the readings, most people, especially first-timers to astrology, fail to realize a few important things. I hope to cover some of them in this post.
The Difficulties Of Being An Astrologer
I don’t wish to package myself as some saint or ultra compassionate person. I’m really just another ordinary human being who happens to know Chinese metaphysics. For the close followers of my blog, they know the reason why I have this skill at my age is because I had an extremely tough start to life, and it sort of ‘hardened’ me up too much, so I tend to reject negative thinking and self-defeating attitudes.
As a practitioner, as time goes by, you will start to notice why certain people are successful and others, not. We can identify this extremely quickly by virtue of that fact that we can read BaZi charts, but what people don’t realize or appreciate is how good and bad BaZi charts manifest in real life.
I find myself having to deal with my demons once in a while during my BaZi consultations because, a lot of times, people with the bad BaZi charts fail to see that they are the root cause of their problems. They don’t realize that the people with the better BaZi charts and better lives not because they are lucky, but simply because, fundamentally, they are different people who make better decisions. People with higher quality charts are simply smarter, more hardworking, and more likeable. It is a harsh truth but we all know deep down it is true.
The Point Of Getting An Astrological Reading
One topic I failed to touch on in this blog is how to get the most from your consultation with a practitioner. If you ever went for a BaZi chart reading before and can’t help but feel that the practitioner is impatient and can’t wait for the session to end, do try to put yourself in the practitioner’s shoes and think about what he or she has to go through.
Practitioners deal with a lot of negativity that comes in different forms. Don’t get me wrong though – I’m not complaining. Frustration comes with any job and it would be naive to think that this field would be an exception. What I hope to achieve in this post is to bridge this gap between the customer and the service provider, and pray that everyone can have a better experience as when both sides understand each other better.
I know practitioners earning a living in this field tend to spin a positive story out of everything because it’s easier to market and that’s what the market wants, and quite honestly it’s also what some people need – a bit of positivity. I do have slightly differing views on this: A practitioner would surely understand the concept of Yin & Yang – everything must be in balance. Positivity in itself is not a bad thing, but if you are so positive to the point of being delusional, it’s dangerous. I have explored and contemplated on this topic since I was in my university days when I first started taking lessons on philosophy under the University Scholars Programme. This view of ‘everything in balance’ is not just a Chinese way of thinking. Even the great Greek philosopher, Aristotle, explored this topic – they call it the Golden Mean. Trust me, I’ve attended quite a number of those self-help workshops when I was younger – I wouldn’t say it was completely useless, but on hindsight, it was really more of a short-term solution that numbed you from the real problems and gave you the false impression that your problems will go away just because you attended some course. It’s a fleeting high that doesn’t result in any real development of character and wisdom.
I know I sound morbid, but sometimes it’s important to accept some hard truths before real meaningful change can be made. I’ve experienced what it was like to be ‘ultra-positive’ all the time and trust me it backfired like crazy. Staying grounded and being aware of your thoughts, your own limitations and your environment are infinitely more important in my opinion.
Anyway, before I digress too much, let’s get back to the main topic of this post.
I’m going to try another style of writing my entries so that people browsing on their phones will find it easier to read. Here are some of the reasons why you might notice that practitioners get frustrated easily:
Working In A Field Where Hardly Anyone Knows What You’re Talking About
Metaphysics is one of those fields where 99% of the clients have no idea what you’re talking about. To make matters worse, it’s not a subject where you can just Google and hope to get just a vague idea of what’s going on. A huge fraction of the people who go for a reading are looking for some direction, probably due to a rough patch they’re going through. This leads to the next common cause of a practitioner’s frustration.
A lot of people would go to the forums in hopes for a free reading. While I can understand this behavior because I try to save money whenever I can, relying on the forums can be a bit risky to your well-being especially when you’re in a vulnerable state and are susceptible to believing whatever you hear. If you really have to rely on the forums, I would personally suggest you take what you read there with a huge pinch of salt.
Thinking Metaphysics Is A Short-Cut To Life’s Problems
I honestly have no idea how it led to this, but a lot of people have the impression that metaphysics is a short-cut to life’s problems. That is simply not true. Just to share a few common examples of what people think or wish I could do:
- Clients expect me to go into their homes to shift the furniture around and make them rich
- Clients hope I can help them find their other half as soon as possible
- Clients want me to help them prevent an event that I foresee will happen
Practitioners are people who have a different lens of viewing the world and we see the world as a series of cause-and-effects, observing the laws that govern the universe. We can’t perform miracles and neither can we solve problems just like that. Metaphysics helps you raise your awareness and acts as a guide, but it will NEVER be a shortcut.
If you have not read my post on what’s the difference between a bad BaZi chart and a good one – you really should.
Jumping To Conclusions & Logical Fallacies
Another common issue is clients jumping to conclusions and committing logical fallacies. The two logical fallacies that people usually make are the false dilemma and personal incredulity fallacies. Let me explain the definitions first:
- False Dilemma: A limited number of options (usually two) is given, while in reality there are more options. A false dilemma is an illegitimate use of the “or” operator. Putting issues or opinions into “black or white” terms is a common instance of this fallacy.
- Personal Incredulity: Concluding that because you can’t or refuse to believe something, it must not be true, improbable, or the argument must be flawed. This is a specific form of the argument from ignorance.
One example of false dilemmas is this: Some clients have such intense desires that they want their lives to be perfect. If they can’t be extremely wealthy, they would think that they are doomed for failure. Some other clients would jump to conclusions without even asking further questions. There is no option of “working towards your goals” – it’s either I have it or I don’t. They see success and their lives in black and white, which is an extremely dangerous thing to do.
As for an example on personal incredulity: I had a client who asked about her husband’s health. I concluded from his chart that the stomach was the weakest organ which needs the most attention, but the client claims I was wrong because it’s his feet that was giving him the most pain. She felt I was inaccurate and that his chart should have pointed that out. Turns out my client was suffering from gout after some probing. So I asked my client, “Is gout in itself a problem with the feet? Or something else?” and I never heard from her again. In Traditional Chinese Medicine theory, the stomach plays a vital role in prevent ailments of the joints, and the root cause of my client’s foot problem is due to his stomach.
This is the reason why I always tell my clients to treat the consultation like a conversation. Because it has to be a conversation in order for you to understand the complexities behind Chinese metaphysics
I’d take the opportunity to mention that I am not a licensed medical professional, so all I can do is to point out which organ would be the weakest in your chart. It is your responsibility to read up on it and determine what kind of complications it might cause. I grew up surrounded by TCM sinseis and have sit through how they diagnosed health ailments – the human body is fascinating and you will be surprised knowing how one weak organ can impact other organs from a TCM perspective. I can’t stress enough how important health is, so please invest some time in understanding what can be done to make you healthier.
If you are unclear of something, try not to jump to your own conclusions and freak yourself out unnecessarily. Take the first step to ask and clarify and get a response from the practitioner first. I’m not sure about how others do it, but remember it is a consultation, so keep the conversation open and remember the session is not a guessing game of what happened in the past. If you don’t trust the practitioner in the first place, don’t engage him or her at all. Turning the consultation into a guessing game is not constructive. It’s often hard to convey what we really wish to express just by using words over text and email, so help us by continuing the conversation so that we can find a better way of expressing it.
I’m not sure how other practitioners conduct their consultations as everyone’s style is different, but below are some of my recommendations on how to get a fruitful consultation:
Be Specific In Your Questions & Give Some Context
Don’t just list the topic or aspect of your life that you want to find out more about. There’s still a long way to go and we don’t know if you’re looking for a general overview or something more specific. It helps a lot when you are specific and it also helps that you give some context. Our job here is not to guess what job or industry you are in – metaphysics can’t do that. It can help to determine what your strengths are, but we won’t know what job you currently hold. When clients say we are “accurate”, it’s not because the consultation was spent on guessing things about the client, but rather, it is through the conversations that unfold that the client realizes the practitioner is pointing out things that have happened during a particular period.
The other reason for this is because three people can have the exact same chart, but they will manifest differently because a Heavenly Stem or Earthly Branch can represents so many different things. I will explain this another time.
Yes, practitioners can have a general understanding of how things will unfold in your life, but we won’t be able to tell exactly how it unfolds. Two people can have the exact same chart, but the way the events unfold in their lives will be totally different. Metaphysics is not a special skill where we can tell you exactly what happens and how to handle it. It’s a study of natural law and cause-and-effect – it doesn’t grant us clairvoyance. You will be the only person who has the clearest idea on how events might unfold, and practitioners are there to help you find your blindspots.
Ask The Right Questions
There are cases where I don’t even have to generate the chart to know that someone will have a challenging chart. One of the most ridiculous question I’ve ever got was “Do I need to work hard for money?” Everyone has to work hard for money.
The kind of questions a person asks is telling of their character and disposition, and how they function. To put things delicately: People who usually ask me such questions are simply looking for a shortcut to their issues or dangerously naive of how life works.
I’ve done enough consultations to noticed a difference in the way people with good charts and bad charts ask their questions. It’s extremely telling of their character. People who ask whether they have to work hard for money will never be successful for reasons I’m sure anyone with a bit of common sense will understand.
Don’t Ever Treat Astrology As A Shortcut
I can’t emphasize enough the important of having the right mindset when getting a consultation. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking metaphysics offers you a shortcut. Think of it as giving you a mirror. If you dug into the Chinese classics and the intent that metaphysics was developed with, you will know what I mean. Be extremely careful of false practitioners taking advantage of this and asking you to buy charms and items – it doesn’t work this way.
I used to be one of those people who believed in all these myths surrounding metaphysics. I was in the shoes of my clients too! My biggest aim for this blog is to dispel myths within this field and educate people on metaphysics. You’re in an incredibly vulnerable position if you go for a BaZi reading but yet, know nothing about it.
I too, once wished that metaphysics would be a shortcut to my problems, but reality taught me problems are meant to be solved in other ways. Imagine yourself to be in my shoes: If you could read BaZi charts, and you read thousands of them, you will be able to notice all these things I’ve said for yourself.