Astrology as an Advanced Oracle w/ Astrologer Michael Erlewine
The Buddhist Perspective on Astrology
In this episode of the Astrology Hub Podcast, Astrologer Michael Erlewine and Amanda ‘Pua’ Walsh discuss “Astrology as an Advanced Oracle”
- The Buddhist perspective of Astrology's origins
- About the power of a Heliocentric Natal Chart
- How Michael develops new astrology techniques
✨ Time Stamps
2:24 Michael Erlewine's Astrological Background
11:53 Astrology and Samsara
24:13 How new Astrology Techniques can be developed
28:32 On receiving new knowledge
31:56 How to master an Astrological Technique
34:53 Astrology as an advanced form of Oracle
47:02 Closing Thoughts
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This transcript is automatically generated. Some miswording might be present.
Amanda Pua Walsh 0:06
Well, hello, everybody, and welcome to the astrology hub podcast. This is our flagship show dedicated to showcasing the multitude of astrological perspectives and techniques. We feature legends in the field, as well as up and coming astrologers. And I am so excited to be here today with a legend in the field, Michael Erlewine. And we're going to be covering some really interesting territory. Today, we're going to be talking about where astrology came from, according to the Buddhist teachings, and we're also going to be going into astrology as an advanced form of Oracle. So I am so grateful to be here with Michael, I'm so grateful to be here with all of you. Thank you for joining us. And Michael, welcome back to the astrology podcast
Michael Erlewine 0:54
Happy to be here.
Amanda Pua Walsh 0:55
All right, so let's start with Well, for those of you who don't know him, Michael is an astrologer, but also a polymath, which I just learned what this term means. And he's an expert in many different fields. So he's, he's an expert in music, he has one of the largest musical libraries and musical databases in the world. He also has the largest, there we go. He has the two largest film databases in the world
Michael Erlewine 1:27
One of two, one of the two largest two.
Amanda Pua Walsh 1:30
Okay, thank you, Michael. He also started the first astrological software. So for those of you who are grateful that you can go onto your computer and cast a chart within minutes, and look up all kinds of different, you know, coordinates and transits and really dive into the charts, using the aid of computers and software, you have Michael, to thank for that we all have Michael, to thank for that, as he pioneered that whole, that whole way of doing astrology, which has truly changed astrology forever, and made it so much more accessible to all of us. And so for that we are forever grateful, Michael. And
Michael Erlewine 2:12
they do I mean, I'm grateful because I needed to have it right.
Amanda Pua Walsh 2:17
Yeah, exactly. So you saw a need, you wanted it yourself, and then you created it, which is fantastic. Alright, so let's start with this topic of where astrology came from. Like, where the origins people ask us all the time like we're astrology even come from how did it start. And I know there's lots of different perspectives on this. But it will be fascinating, fascinating to dive into the Buddhist teaching, since that's where a lot of your background
Michael Erlewine 2:42
So some of my background also, I've studied not just Tibetan astrology, but Indian astrology, and Chinese astrology, and of course, Western astrology for many, many years. But we want to talk about them, you're gonna get many different views on this. But if you want to, in in 2004, my Dharma teacher, I've worked with a Tibetan Dharma teacher doesn't even speak English. He's passed away, I'm sorry to say. But I was with him for 36 years, and work closely with him, mostly studying learning to meditate and to do what's called Maha Mudra. Meditation and the passion, our insight, meditation, stuff like that. I got a chance to go with Rinpoche and some of his senior students, mostly Lamas that had been done a three year of closed retreat. And we just got to go along, which was kind of great. And one of the places we went aside from Tibet, which had been to before we went to China, and in China is a place called Mount Wu, Tai Shan, mango, Tai Shan are five mounts in the form of a die number five die with no for a square with a.in, the middle, those are five mountains. And we went and spent a week there. And we went to the top of each mountain. And we did what's called Pooja prayers, say prayers, and invoked. And what was special about this, my teacher knew that I loved astrology. In fact, he came to our center with we run a Dharma Center for many years since the 80s, called the heart center KTC combat take some chilling, and he came in gave a special teaching there's but he knew that I would, would want to go to my rotation and probably tease me about I don't remember exactly, but the reason he took us there are one of the reasons is that according to the teachings, the Tibetan teachings and the Chinese teachings, that at Mount Wu Tai Shan was the place that astrology first entered our world system. And the way that happened is a is a Tibetan Buddhist deity come Manjushri appeared in the form of a youth. At Mount Bhutto, Bhutto Shannon from the top of his head came. The 84,000 84,000 is a term that Buddhists use a lot just mean a lot. The 84,000 not dharmas. But astrology dharmas. Right. So that's a big difference. And these these documents, which are called law get poured out, and he gave them all to humankind. And people loved it, people loved astrology. And they loved it so much, that when she was noticing, they weren't really doing their dharma practice. I'm just saying this very colloquially, Minister, just so you get the idea. It could be very long, but I'll try not to be so long. And so he felt badly. So he set up, he took back all the teachings all the terma. And so that people would, you know, get, because one of the things that, as my teacher said to me is that astrology, and he told me this very clearly, who was is one of the limbs of the yoga, yoga means to join our mixing our mind with the mind itself, but it's not the root. Astrology is one of the limbs of the yoga but not the root, root. And we have time I could explain that because astrologist really need to understand that that astrology astrology is basically something that is that works in our sim sub what we call samsara does work in a world we're in with subject and objects, and samsara is a cyclic world that we live in ups and downs and ins and outs, and arounds and so forth.
Michael Erlewine 7:10
So anyway, he took it all back. And then let's call the second Buddha is Padma Sun bhava, also called Guru Rinpoche. Great being second only to bother whatever I mean, all this is kind of, like, legendary stuff, right? I mean, I don't know, I'm just telling you the story that was told to me, I know nothing about that, then that was it. I went to this place and stuff like that, is that he went to munchie, Shri guru, she said, Please, if people are sad, human humans are sad. They would like to have this and, and finally, Murphy was convinced that okay, but here's what but there's a caveat here. There's a, there's a but I'll do it. But I'm going to instead of just giving it back, I'm going to hide all these 84,000 teachings throughout the world, in the middle of rocks, on the rocks, in deep in the sea, but maybe the greatest proportion or a great proportion, I'm going to hide in the mind itself. So these are what the Tibetans called karma. And someone who finds one of these treasures is called a Kertan. Anyway, so we went so mount worship shows where all this happened. And I've had the, my good fortune. I mean, part of being an astrology. Person, as deep as I went into it, I was able to pull out of my mind, techniques that never existed in astrology before they came along. One of them is called Local space. The whole world of heliocentrics. I went when I went to see like the Dalai Lama stuff. It's called the Karmapa, who's the head of our lineage, and I've been doing this for a long time. And I'm at 15,000 feet and Harry is in can't speak English, but he says, gave me a name. He said, You are Tenza Nima. And I said, whoa, whoa, what's that and our guide translates as a holder, the son, keeper of the sun. In astrology are known as a heliocentric astrology, someone who understood it is empowered to some degree in he was heliocentrics. So anyway, the idea of what happens that and I've been trying to encourage my fellow astrologers for 4050 years at least, to not just read another book, to not just go and read about astrology. and try to learn techniques, techniques are extremely powerful things, somebody develops a technique and releases it in the world. It's not toxic, but it's so condensed that unless you're empowered, so that you understand it, what's called really realize it. And this is what happens with tamma. If you go into your own mind, and you find a hidden astrological treasure, it's not like he didn't just take it out and pass it around. First you have to receive it and you have to understand it, it has to influence you like an intuition, then you have to experience it, that means you have to make it real and live it. Then if you can do that, you have to fully realize its nature and what it is, after which you've received the empowerment you capable of empowering others with it. So my point is that in the world of astrology, I can't say much about my doing this with Dharma, although I've studied dharma as hard as I can for a very long period of time. But with astrology, I'm very fortunate in the sense that I have brought a number of things out of the mind, spent years studying them. And until I was empowered enough so that I could actually communicate them to others, which I'm trying to do a little bit of right now. So that's the idea. So the inner we spent a week there and a lot of other things happens. Well, then we also spent weeks in, in Tibet itself going to
Michael Erlewine 11:42
where Rinpoche was born, for instance, and but that's a separate one. But anyway, so that's the rough story.
Amanda Pua Walsh 11:53
So great, Michael, I love this. Couple questions for you here. Yes. All right. So you said that astrology works in the context? Are these astrology dharmas. They work in the context of samsara.
Michael Erlewine 12:11
Yes. Let's talk about that. Yes. Okay. Well, that's pretty simple. But if I had to say one thing to my fellow astrologers, of which, when I ran my software company make, which is what's called matrix stole his matrix software, I just don't own it. I think we went through some 40,000 astrologers that I didn't know them all, but for a short time, or for many years, or 10 years, so everyone came to our center, all the famous people mean people like Dean Roger said, My house teaching Robert hand or you name them, there's almost no 20th century astrologer that probably because if they want to software, this is where they got it. So the important thing to understand is that this world that we live in, is not nirvana. The samsara is this world. dualistic world have said before, cyclic world that we live in, we're not enlightened. We haven't reached Nirvana, whatever that is. And what Rinpoche made clear to me is that astrology is made to work in this world that we're in. And I'll give you a story. This is the way I, when I used to teach it, just imagine that the earth is a globe of water covered with water, with wind and waves. And on that globe is a single sailboat with a with a sail, and you can, by setting the sail, you can move anywhere you want to on the globe. But you can't, you can't get off the globe. And you can't go to the center of the globe or anything like that. So but they're trying to say, I mean, I mean, if this analogy is that, that boat is astrology, astrology is made to be used in this world, because it can, and I did readings for many years for people. What it can do is help us and this is we're kind of talking now about readings, which we're going to maybe talk about, point is that what can happen in a reading, astrology readings, the astrology of they're any good, can help the client to recognize where they're at. And in, we all have some recognition, but we mostly don't accept what's troubling us, right? We don't really, you have to accept something in order to change it. And so what astrology does, in this analogy of the boat is Astrology can pick us up where we are, help us reset our sails and head to a better part of samsara, which is more happy, more convenient for us. But it will never take us to the root of the mind, which is the mind itself. And it's not built for that. For that we do what's called Dharma, we learn to recognize, which is a whole nother thing, the nature of our own mind. And that's, that's something we can talk about. But that's, that's very difficult. So I'll just repeat what Rinpoche said, astrology is one of the limbs like a tree of the of the yoga, but it's not the root. The Dharma is the word if you want to go to the center, which you can't go on the globe, you would be going inward, inward on the outside astrology. So another way to say this, it's a little crude, is that astrology is like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, you can rearrange it as much as you want, try to get comfortable, but we are all going to pass on we're all gonna die. And this world is very, very much impermanent. And we need to astrology can't solve that for us, that it can make us as comfortable as possible. It helps us to make ourselves more comfortable than we are. And that that really works. And astrology does do that, that it doesn't strategy is not dharma, dharma is the Dharma, right? How to how to actually realize the nature of our own mind, it's not going to come out of an astrology chart.
Amanda Pua Walsh 16:46
It's going to point us in the direction but it's not going to give us the ultimate
Michael Erlewine 16:50
point us in a good direction. But the practices it doesn't have, for instance, practices mean there's all kinds of guided meditation, which is not what meditation is about. But it's not going to do that for us, we're going to have to, eventually, we want to learn meditation in the way that was originally taught by someone like the Buddha, then that's a whole nother series of techniques. Astrology doesn't cover strategy we can. We can yearn and use astrology. But something that we talked briefly about astrology has tried to take out of the chart, know their natal chart. And I did this of course, for a while, it was my everything I didn't have any other thing too, is. And the reason I got into astrology in the first place is I was raised in the 40s in the 50s. So I'm 80 years old at this point. And modern psychology, which is kind of coming up and and so that I was troubled that I had to learn who I was, but you know that you're paranoid or you're schizophrenic, or you're all this stuff, but none of the thing Oh, no, you're noble. You're all the things that used to be ways of finding out what qualities you have astrology came along and found astrology was more like that gave me another, an alternate way of seeing myself other than some form of psychological impairment. Right, right. Yeah. But they were having a heyday that colleges were going crazy, be really happy about being able to diagnose and that was very painful for people that were just kids like I was to have to think of yourself in that way. And astrology taught me she, I could think of myself this way through astrological terms, and it was much, much more so anyway, that's how I got into astrology is because it was gave me something to compare to. And what I started to say is that astrologers try to get everything, try to use astrology as the only thing they have. And when there are actually many different charts. There's more than one chart. There's the geocentric chart that we've used for centuries. There's a heliocentric chart, which we have not used, that Copernicus pointed out to both astrologers used to be astronomers. And astronomers used to be astrologers. About 500 years ago, Copernicus said, Hey, everyone, every everything doesn't revolve around us. It's not all about us. We actually revolve around the sun. Astrologers never bought that. And they haven't got it yet, but astronomers walked away with the astrology chart, which we know and the map the the heliocentric just call it a stronger mature. I call the common chart, I call it a Karma chart, the one we know and I call the helio what a Dharma chart because it shows who we are. The modern chart that everyone uses it uses is a chart of your current of your karma of the circumstances in which you've been born and what you're going to have to live in and through. But it doesn't say enough. And I used to try to pull everything I could out of their chart about who you are. What's your archetype? What tribe Do you belong? That's your dharma chart. That's your heliocentric chart. And you put once you have two charts, you have something to compare to you have like, triangulation, you have like a 3d view of who you are. And so this is something I've been trying to point out to astrologers, but they're just unable to as primary my fault for not being a good teacher, they're not able to realize this. They're not able to, they don't use the they don't, they don't have to charge they have one chart from which they get everything. Try try to but I have learned that one chart is not enough. You have to have different views. And they're all trying like to create what put out something I get treated three dimensional view. Anyway, that's a long ramble there. But
Amanda Pua Walsh 21:15
it's great, though, Michael, I think, potentially, it's not your fault that that they're not looking at the heliocentric I think there's an there's so much in the geocentric perspective alone, that it can be overwhelming to think, oh, my gosh, I have to learn another one. But I can definitely see the benefit. And I could really feel what you said, when you when you said that you get a triangulation you get, you get a different perspective, that's more three dimensional than a flat dimensional perspective. If for anybody interested in exploring more of this heliocentric these heliocentric ideas, and you're going What's the heliocentric chart, I've never really heard of this. We do have two previous episodes with Michael that you can tune into, we have episode 361. And we have episode 328. So both of those, and if you're on YouTube going I don't see the numbers. If you do have a podcast player, or on the website, on our website, astrology hub comm you can see the episode numbers. And that will actually point you in the right direction to those previous Michael Erlewine interviews, where we go into those topics a lot deeper. So check those out. Michael, let me just make sure I understand. And I'm gonna ask you one more question before we move on to astrology as a advanced Oracle. But essentially, there's these 84,000 astronauts, astrological dharmas that spread out into all corners of the world, but the most, and these are like keys or teachings around astrology. That's right. But most of them have been buried or hidden in our mind. That's right, you have had the amazing experience to actually access some of these Termas. And actually, essentially, it must feel like downloading are uncovering some like hidden, just script in your mind to find an astrological technique that actually works. And it says
Michael Erlewine 23:20
something that you into it. Yeah, it's like breathing in air, fresh air, something that you don't know what it is, you can't see the end of it. But you just cannot. But want to know it right? Now the process of knowing it evolves into a realization. And the steps that it takes to get that realization, or what we call in astrology techniques, in astrology has many techniques, like the Saturn cycle that we have learned. But we probably didn't learn them from somebody that could empower, they could show us the steps to go through to do it. But that's just like the skeleton. That's not the heart and soul of it. You need to be empowered from somebody that has been empowered before you in order to be able to do that.
Amanda Pua Walsh 24:13
This is leading right into my next question. So one of the things you said is that through the last 40-50 years, you have really encouraged astrologers not just to read books, not just to copy techniques and and think of it as a mechanical thing, that there's an actual, you went through a three step process, which was really interesting. You said that the technique or the tool or the idea needs to imprint you, then you need to experience it. Then you can fully realize its nature. It reminds me of gardening, you don't think there's a seed? It's like an imprint, right? There's a seed and then water it and you fertilize it and you you form a relationship with it and then it's Prouds and you don't necessarily even know what it's gonna look like or what it's going to become. But you experience that process of unfolding with it, right?
Michael Erlewine 25:10
Ultimately, there's a difference between experience. We all are experiencing stuff every day. But realizing what it is that we are experiencing, is a different thing. Because experience comes and goes, we feel really good now, we're really brave, we're having a breakthrough we're seeing life as it is. But two, two weeks later, we're crawling on the ground. A psychic once told me about the story of the little, little kid was trying to get off the bottle, maybe three or four years old, or whatever it was, such a little kid went to the edge of the porch and threw a bottle of milk into the bushes. And you know, a few hours later, out there crying, her eyes are trying to find the barrel, right? That's how that's what experiences we, we say, Oh, now I have experience. But three weeks later, we can't really remember it. But it's certainly not feeling that weight. Now, realization is like when you realize like how to turn on a light switch. Once you've someone shows you, that's not something you forget. So but it's much more complicated when we get to spiritual realization. But it's still just as simple. Once you realize something. You never walk it back and never goes back. Once you realize the nature of your mind in particular, in the Dharma training. It never, never can go feral. You're not doing anything with it. But you'll never go back to not having had that realization. So in astrology, I've tried my very best, you know, that's one thing. If you go to my one of my websites, which is simply I don't have I can't spell a bank to spell it. It just spirit S.P.I.R.I.T grooves spiritgrooves.net or.com There are hundreds of free ebooks, including I think 56 books on astrology that cost you nothing. So I've tried to take a lot of these realizations and give you all that you need. And of course, you would have to take somebody that has the has the need within them to want to absorb this stuff, and go through that. So I don't expect them right now. So on Facebook, Michael, Erlewine blog every single day and not always on astrology, a lot of it's on dharma. But today, I blogged about Raptors watching, we're going to go up north and to where all the top of the up of Michigan, the land funnels to point and all the great birds comes there before they try to fly across Lake Superior. I'm going to go up there. And so I'm saying I log on whatever interests me that idea. So
Amanda Pua Walsh 28:12
thank you for that. It's It's beautiful, definitely check out the Facebook page and that website. And what I'm hearing you say is that you can only receive the teachings that are in these 56 books that you wrote, and all these other things if you have the willingness and the receptivity and in the
Michael Erlewine 28:32
last word receptivity, that you have to train for that you can't, we're just not naturally that receptive. We, you have to learn to open up and let go, you have to be willing to receive in Buddhist training, they have what are called the point pointing out instructions. The teacher can point it out as to in what's pointed out is the nature of our own mind that we would get it enough that we become familiar with it, we could start to say, Oh, I see how it works like this. So same with astrology then there you have to get up. If anything that people could keep asking me or get interviewed in different ways. You know what is missing in modern astrology? What's missing in modern astrology is that astrologers assume that the mind their astrological mind, just as it comes out of the box just as they were born, that they're good to go. And Dharma doesn't look at that looks like no you. You need to be learned to become receptive to be able to hold a teaching for to take it in and then go through the process which you've pointed out of understanding and experiencing it and eventually realizing it, at which point you are empowered them to pass it on. So I spend a lot of my life trying to find encourage astrologers not so spend so much time studying books and techniques that are themselves intricate and difficult, but start to, to look at your own mind just to learn to be still, to sit and do nothing and not be bored. Just start to, to, to, to rest in the mind itself just for moments, just for a moment until a thought comes. But that's the way a lot of dharma is taught is that thought the thoughts are like, waves on the ocean, they're never going to stop, you're never going to stop thoughts coming. But when they come, it means that you're, you're brought back out of whatever you're in, back into some sort of subject and object, I'm thinking about this. We're speaking, this is dualistic. But we can learn to rest, non dualistic Lee, in the mind itself, where there is no subject or object, if only for a moment, but you have to start practicing that have to start letting yourself you can't rest the mind. We can't do anything with the mind. But we can allow the mind really this we can allow ourselves to rest in the nature of the mind, the nature of the mind will never change. But we're foreign to it to the degree that we've separated ourselves from it. So that idea, I'm sorry to be a preacher, but there's a little bit of that as well.
Amanda Pua Walsh 31:33
Question for you. Yes. So you talked about the three things imprint experience and fully realize realization, realization and
Michael Erlewine 31:43
recognition. Okay, Mission recognizing, oh, this is how it works.
Amanda Pua Walsh 31:48
Right? Right. And that once you have that you can't forget it. It's like, it's, it's,
Michael Erlewine 31:53
it's true. It's true. You're in it yet.
Amanda Pua Walsh 31:56
Okay, so my question is, and you've you felt passionate about this enough to, to speak it to astrologers and to and to really try to impart that wisdom to astrological students? What do you see happens when we don't do that?
Michael Erlewine 32:14
What do you mean, when we don't do
Amanda Pua Walsh 32:15
we don't when we don't, when we go out? And we and we just try to learn a technique and then start teaching it, you know, in a couple weeks, or we, you know, we don't allow it to really
Michael Erlewine 32:28
well, simply, we don't know what we're talking about. Maybe you can do the technique, you can turn a meat grinder and sausage will come out. We have no idea what we're doing, we certainly couldn't teach someone else how to do it. Because we don't really know it ourselves. We just know how to practice that technique like analogy would be that in Dharma, if you ask a Dharma person, what are you doing? So I'm doing my practice, dharma practice. That's not meditating. That's practicing meditation. That's the difference. It's the same difference in astrology, many astrologers can do these techniques and get some result. But they have no idea. They have never realized, and they don't know. That technique as a Realized thing inside and out. And I'm saying that that's the only thing that's really valuable. That I know of, is, is what you realize, when I can do I have the probably the one of the largest astrology libraries in the world, which I've gave to the university, but 1000s and 1000s of magazines and books. I look through all of them some I certainly didn't attend to read them all, it would be horrible anyway. That's just not enough. There's a point after which we don't, we're not going to need to we shouldn't, if I can say shouldn't shouldn't just read another book. I'd rather read another book, then actually go and look at the mind itself, which is right there with me. Right? I mean, I wouldn't I'd rather go into the mind itself. One is, if we're always just going to read another book, we're always just getting ready to actually go and do what the logical thing is, is to actually inundate or immerse ourselves in, in the mind itself, whether it's the mind of astrology and the mind of dharma, or any other topic. At some point, we're gonna have to stop reading and be as my teachers say, I had my first Dharma teacher said, Michael, someday you have to be the book. Instead of just reading another book, and ideas. I don't read astrology books anymore. I don't need to write them, or I talk like this, but it's not that I didn't pay the dues. I did.
Amanda Pua Walsh 34:53
Right. Right. Okay, some invaluable wisdom here, Michael. Thank you. Moving on to The next topic, which is how astrology is an advanced form of Oracle. So what do you mean by that?
Michael Erlewine 35:07
Well, let's just talk about first of all, what's an Oracle when I was young? I love all the Oracle's back in the late 50s and early 60s, you know, was the eaching. And there was the tarot cards and there was chicken gizzards or tea leaves. An oracle is, is whatever can be anything. It's whatever puts us in touch with, we could say ourselves, but that's the sixth circle, just a circle. Articles allow the universe to speak to us, for us to communicate. Whether you do the tarot cards, or an astrology is just aside from what astrology is, mechanically, it can be an Oracle, it's just a complex Oracle at a store. What is it that we want? From doing astrology? What is it? Why do we even do it? Other than all the stuff? Maybe some people do it to make money or impress their friends or, but most of us start out trying to find out more about ourselves from our astrology chart. And I still do the same. I'm no different. I see a new technique I want to see, for instance, like transits in astrology have always worked for me. That progressions for me, have never worked, even though I learned to program every many, many different kinds of directions and progressions, but I could never, I never, it never did anything for me. But transit's right on the money for me. So I think that we've got to find, if I had to say what I did in life, that was the best thing is that it was that I followed my interests to the exclusion of school. And I never mean I flunked school. Left school never finished high school. Because I was not interested. I have always found exactly, which, as a kid was most in nature, Mother Nature. I know all about salamanders and frogs and stuff like that. It's so good that I even had a little office in the University of Michigan museums building, because I was a little bit of a prodigy about really being into salamanders, right? And finding out ways of telling how all the salamander is not by measuring them with a ruler, which is what they did. But by studying the thin bones of the skull, para sphenoid bone has growth rings on the bone, you can see exactly how and I'm saying that was the kind of stuff I did, that people had. I don't ever know they ever did before. So I'm just saying that you got the idea. And I lost my train of thought, which is something I'm doing as I get older. So
Amanda Pua Walsh 38:03
So you said that you have followed your interest. That's the one thing in life you've done that it seems to have been very rewarded by doing that, following your interest to the exclusion of school. So basically, you had to go against what everybody else valued as educated or
Michael Erlewine 38:21
they would say they would say we'll see at the carwash, Michael. No, I got accepted to University of Michigan, even without that I went for three weeks this is this is just the same stuff. I need to go and live life. I want to get into life. And I went out and live. I just hung out with myself. I think of myself as what's called a phenom out phenomenologist. Someone who is studying the nature of their own consciousness, what's happening inside of me, today, Tao. So I did that instead of going to school, in all of my businesses, like I was a musician, I was an astrologer. They were all things that I loved and never had any I never made a living and then had to work some jobs when I was really young. Except for I only made money from something that I loved. But this was very lonely. And also very having no money. Because for many, many years, I wouldn't do the stuff I would have to do to have money. And so I had no money, right? Even Even though I'd have kids, when I found out that we're gonna have kids. First thing I did was go out and work on a garbage truck. Just because I was terrified I wouldn't be a good provider but turns out I am a good provider. Because pretty soon but I did was become an astrologer. So I'll just, you know, it really wasn't astrology I'll just put out of shingle which I do on my end became a professional astrologer. But that is something I love to do, right. But it's not easy money in going to conventions with mostly psychics, and a few astrologers very hard to make a living as an astrologer.
Amanda Pua Walsh 40:08
Michael, do you think I mean, I think the reason why people don't do one of the reasons why people don't do what you did, which is follow your interest and, and not do the conventional thing, which is for a lot of people just doing a job to make money, right. And what you're saying is that you you at times in your life had to sacrifice making money in order to stay aligned with following your interest
Michael Erlewine 40:36
in your I wouldn't do I wouldn't do it.
Amanda Pua Walsh 40:38
I mean, I live with it. You just couldn't do it. There's nothing I couldn't do
Michael Erlewine 40:41
it inside of me. It was the same with teachers. And I had one teacher in the fourth grade, Mrs. Althouse that that I could learn from but all the rest of them. If they didn't show me some life savvy, some some life I couldn't learn from him was something I just said. It was something I literally couldn't do it. So I spent, what 11 years and something just waiting to get out of school, but always working on what I was working at home. So I think that and also I learned nature's laws before I learned men's civilised laws. I think that was a big deal. Because nature doesn't blink. Nature's a tough. I had someone who said to me, oh, nature is so beautiful. Yeah, it's beautiful. But it's a raw beauty. And it's very, it's impermanence. In fact, even in Dharma, they have what's called the llama of appearances, that you can learn Dharma from just Mother Nature, just by being but experiencing clearly, what really, what are the laws of nature. So I learned those before I learned civil law, so that if they weren't communicating to me, with that kind of power that nature has, I just didn't listen to him. Because I just feel they're fooling themselves.
Amanda Pua Walsh 42:11
I love the purity of this, that I see this in children. I see. You know, they they're fighting against this convention, they don't want to be put into these boxes. And that that spark in them squashed out. And I think there's a huge movement now especially of, of parents who are seeing this and aligned also and going hmm, I don't think this school thing is really serving and I don't really think it. It results in innovative, creative, passionate, engaged, adults, it actually arose, right?
Michael Erlewine 42:48
We had home birth, and we were home educated, not all of our kids, but two of our kids. Because I wanted them not to lose the freshness of the wonder all my kids know about frogs and know about this that. Yeah, I think it's what interests us, or natural interest is like a wellspring, like a fountain that you want to drink from. And you don't want someone to put concrete over it. So we did. That's where we felt with our kids. I mean, we had a backyard full of cages of animals that were rehabilitating. I was part of a wildlife rescue, trying to get animals like deer or whatever, ready to go back out and heal them. So the kids grew up with stuff like that. And they it shows now because they're very creative. I have four kids and eight grandkids.
Amanda Pua Walsh 43:52
One of them is a very famous musician. Yes, yeah. One
Michael Erlewine 43:55
of our two of them are musicians. But one of them was pretty famous May Erlewine is. Yeah, just be loved by. Yeah, she is.
Amanda Pua Walsh 44:07
Yes. So Michael, what I see as a result of that path that you chose, and were uncompromising about is that you have, you have lived a prolific life, you have written prolifically, you have brought gifts in every industry that you felt passionate about, you have left a legacy of creativity and gifts that continue to give. And I truly believe that that is possible for any one of us, who, who really dedicate our lives to the things that light us up from the inside. And so often astrology, it gives us the permission that we need to actually pursue those things. Because you can see in the chart, the wiring or you can see and so often In a reading, for me, it's been like, oh god, yes, I know that. I know that that's something that I could bring, or I could give. And it's just like, Okay, this is this is just confirmation of what I already know. And it's like permission granted, go, like, go for that. And it's one of the gifts I feel that astrology gives. I don't know if you agree with that.
Michael Erlewine 45:20
I agree with that. Totally, I mean, but I'm very sensitive about astrology. In the purity of astrology, and, and I'm not happy with a lot of what passes for modern astrology. Or you have to just go to a convention or two.
Michael Erlewine 45:40
It's just sad. There's a lot of I'm interested in trying to preserve. So there's could be some lineage. In astrology, that is something that could be passed on.
Michael Erlewine 46:00
It's just not much it's all about. Just, it's just like what I said, when Copernicus pointed out that everything doesn't revolve around us. Astrologers never got it, they still think everything is about them. When really, it's not, we revolve around the Sun, the Sun is the the arbiter of our life that we're all this. Or that the idea that the sun is just a big pot ball of gas, instead of the vibrant being, whatever it is, that's in us, Sun as part of that as well. So I've done my best and not been very successful when trying to encourage astrologists to, to look into their own mind, and put their books aside and learn to, to actually pull from the moment we talked about this 84,000 Dharma Teachings and the Buddhist term, I mean, I mean, astrology teachings, I don't see that happening much.
Amanda Pua Walsh 47:02
Again, you have not failed. The way that I see it is you are a pioneer, you have blazed ground you have you have blazed new toward new territory. And it's like a field that you have tilled and fertilized and made ripe for seeds to plant in. And it's just a consciousness unfolding, and that you were ahead of your time. And thank you for being here and sharing these gifts. Because these are things that we can continue to share with people forever. And, and I think that it's, it's, again, I'll use the word invaluable, because this is coming from all of your 80 years of living life, of pursuing your passion of going deeply into these different fields, and pulling these gifts and keys out of your own mind. And then sharing them and each one of us as we get exposed to people like you who have lived your life this way. It again, it's that permission thing. It's like, okay, I could live my life that way, too. And look what happens when, when one lives their life this way, they have so much to give, in their elder years, so much to share. It's like you're overflowing with things to share. And I know that for myself, that is extraordinarily inspiring. And I think that that would be for our audience as well.
Michael Erlewine 48:29
Maybe so I mean, I think I've missed people constantly say because I also study dharma. Dharma is the hardest thing I've ever studied, like, way more difficult than psychology. I don't know how to even express it that you have to I could not do what I did. Maybe it's a way to send me said I couldn't stand to be taught. I couldn't stand to be taught by somebody that just was not interested, really, in anything in their own life. In as I got older and became a musician, I spent many years in fact are just reading a thing a book on my drummer was Iggy Pop, and we named Amiga and stuff and in his biography, he's talking about me that that I was extremely pure about trying to understand and be Reverend about black music, basically blues, and I interviewed scores of blues players, I spent time with them. It wasn't just their music. It was the life savvy that they they had. I never had a granddad on either side. So I never had the My dad never talked to us about anything personal. So I have a huge interest in him and I found the Dharma people even Even better, because they weren't in the alcohol and stuff like that. People who really knew about what they're doing, I didn't know what I'm doing. I'm still just trying to learn. I don't think of myself as a teacher, I think of myself as a share someone who wants to share everything that I'm amazed at. Because I think that astrologers would be amazed to, if they could trust themselves enough to go into the mind, and learn how to do that. So that idea,
Amanda Pua Walsh 50:32
so beautiful, Michael, thank you so much for everything that you've shared with us on this episode on the previous episodes that we've had you on here at astrology hub. Again, if you're interested in more from Michael, you can go to Episode 328. And Episode 361, on the astrology hub podcast. And the way that I'm I'm envisioning this is we're creating a little bit of a library of you of the things that you have the things that you feel passionate about sharing with the astrological community. And I'm so grateful that you come to this platform and that you share the way you do. So thank you for that. And is there anything else that you want to say before we close up?
Michael Erlewine 51:13
I'm good to be. And you've recorded this right? Oh, yes. No, good. No, I appreciate. First of all, I think you're a remarkable interviewer. And I know what I'm talking about, because I've done a ton of interviewing myself. So I appreciate being invited to do this. And to have a chance to share whatever I can, especially with a lot of astrologers. I love astrology, and I love astrologers. I'm just sad about that our life couldn't be easier than most astrologers aren't, it's not recognized as a as a Right Livelihood when I was first trying to get a bank to give me a loan to buy my first calculator that I then became, made astrology from. I was proud of being an astrologer. And the bank examiner guy said, Well, what are you what do you do? So I'm an astrologer. And then he said, he pull up things. So well, that's right above migrant workers, we're not going to give you the loan, I went back three times, I eventually got the loan. And that started it. But I'm just saying, it's not necessary, that we study astrology and not make a decent living.
Amanda Pua Walsh 52:30
I couldn't agree more Michael, it's one of the missions of astrology hub to continue to elevate the field and provide opportunities for people to make this a living when, when I first got into it, and I got exposed to a lot of different astrologers and saw that it was, it was kind of like the starving artists mentality, like, like, it's something you do because you love it, but you can't make a living and most of them were it was a side hustle, you know, they were doing it on the side almost as like a, the thing they really love doing but they had day jobs. And I went, Whoa, this doesn't make sense, because they're providing so much value to people like the kind of value that changes people's lives, right?
Michael Erlewine 53:10
to hustle, the no idea that you have to be hustlers. That's just said, it doesn't make
Amanda Pua Walsh 53:17
any sense to me. And that's truly why one of the missions of astrology hub is to continue providing opportunities for astrologers to make this a career where you actually can dedicate your time and your energy and your your research and your practice, and, and meditating and all the things that we no need to do in order to be a good astrologer. And I'm so grateful to know that we have been successful in that for some astrologers, and that we're continued to be dedicated to that and create new ways for it to get out into the world because it just doesn't make sense. Yet my Capricorn Sun and Mercury and Venus is like, it doesn't make sense, because I got more from my first reading than I got from anything I learned in psychology. And I have my masters in psychology, you know, anything that I've learned in any sort of counseling I got the most from the
Michael Erlewine 54:11
astrology readings. And no, go ahead.
Amanda Pua Walsh 54:15
Yeah, so to just it's like, this doesn't have to be this way. What can we do to change it? How can we
Michael Erlewine 54:21
let me let me just say this, that in the Dharma, if you want to go study the Buddha Dharma what you find out pretty quickly, is that the biggest problem that you have is your inability to receive the teachings. So they have what are called the preliminary practices. And they have the common preliminaries, the extraordinary eliminators even the special and what these are, they're just like, very arduous, difficult, like, doing 100,000 prostrations on the ground, right. Yeah, that's just one of them. I have to do it too. Is my teacher. I did all of it and then he told me do all of it again. Right. So we housing prostrations? Well, that's just one of them. That was 100,000 Mondal offerings where you, you put sand and special piles on. Anyway, there's, there's, it was it seemed medieval, at the first look like I didn't want to do stuff, something like that, that seems so stupid. But it wasn't stupid because we are assuming that we're ready to receive. And we have to first remove enough of our get to see beyond ourselves, we can see ourselves has to become transparent enough that we can just love ourselves, but not follow ourselves because our self is nothing more than our own likes and dislikes. It'd be like you know, like Jerry Mahoney, you know, ventriloquist trying to follow instructions from the dummy. So we need to, that's what I think we need, we need to do enough training to remove the obstacles, what's called our operations, like, it's like saying through dirty glasses, we need to clean the glasses, then I think that astrologist could move forward. But that's my view of it.
Amanda Pua Walsh 56:16
I love that view. And we'll we'll see we're in it, you know, things are changing so much. Although, you know, what you said about the the bank loan, it's something very similar happened to us with the apple, because we had, we're developing an app to make it easy for people to find great astrologers to have readings with. And so we we submitted it to the Apple developer store, and they rejected it. This is new, they have allowed some astrology apps to go through but a new thing. They put it in the category of dating apps, farting, apps, drinking game apps, and psychic or something else, and they just they said astrology is within those parameters. And we are not accepting those anymore. And I just went, what, like, what, what like, century are we end at this point, but it still exists? And I and there's ways around it? It's like, okay, fine. We're not going to do your app. We're going to make it web based, which we have done and which is it's going to be released into the world as a web based thing. So but it's still there. It's still there. Amazingly.
Michael Erlewine 57:28
Welcome to the world of astrology. Right.
Amanda Pua Walsh 57:32
Exactly. Michael, thank you. Again, it's been such a pleasure to share this time with you. Thanks to all of you for listening for your sincere curiosity, and your earnest love of astrology and desire to know more. I am so grateful that you're here. Thank you for tuning into this episode for being a part of our community and as always, for making astrology a part of your life.
Michael Erlewine 57:54
We'll catch you. Thanks. Nice to be here. Happy to be here.
Amanda Pua Walsh 57:58
Oh, we're so happy to have you here, Michael. And we'll catch all of you on the next episode. Take care everybody.