reporter contents :: albright college
orking in Atlanta Ga. in the late ’70s, Dianne Seaman ’74 felt like something was missing from her life. She worked as a VISTA volunteer, made some money as a photographer, took up dance, but something inside told her she hadn’t yet found her calling.
In a transition period, a friend recommended she see an astrologer, but Seaman wasn’t so sure. “I was the world’s biggest skeptic about astrology,” she says. “All I saw were silly columns (horoscopes) in the paper that were a bunch of nonsense.” But with some coercion from her friends, Seaman went to see the astrologer. “I gave him such a hard time. I wanted proof. But this man described my life so accurately and in such detail, I was blown away.”
With an academic background in psychology and biology, the scientist in Seaman decided to explore the field of astrology herself. For two years she read books, gathered proof and studied people who were close to her. In her research, she discovered that Carl Jung, a Swiss psychologist, used astrology as a diagnostic tool with patients. “That got my attention,” she says.
Today, Seaman works as a spiritual psychologist, using astrology as a psychological diagnostic tool to compliment traditional therapies. “It truly works,” she says. “A stranger will walk in and I have instant access to deeper dimensions of that person.”
Seaman sees astrology as an x-ray of the unconscious. “The mind is a mystery,” she says. “It cannot be x-rayed like the limbs and organs of the body. Astrology offers a solution to this dilemma.” Closely linked to psychology, she sees it as a counseling tool as opposed to a fortune telling device. Using the date, time and place of a person’s birth, she draws up a personal natal (birth) chart. She follows this with a 90-minute session designed to introduce the individual to the symbolic language of astrology as it applies to character traits, behavior patterns, relationships and vocation. A complete astrological chart illustrates the evolving energy pattern of an individual’s life.
Seaman refers to a quote by Jung: “An astrological birth chart is both a map and a timetable of the individuation process. It symbolizes the basic lines of a person’s potential development and the cycles of the development. Real psychological astrology has the capacity to greatly assist an individual to bring to consciousness previously unconscious dynamics in their psyche. It is a powerful tool for growing into wholeness.”
While astrology reveals an individual’s intrinsic core nature, Seaman says, “I usually don’t end up telling people anything new. Most times it serves as a validation of things they always sensed about themselves. It’s really a self-awareness tool.”
Astrology is based on the positions occupied by the sun, moon and planets, relative to the Earth at the time, date and place of a person’s birth. So popular “sun sign” horoscope columns that only use the sun are neglecting 90 percent of the chart, Seaman says. “That’s why sun sign columns are pretty meaningless.”
Each of the planets, as well as the sun and the moon, represent various themes, and each theme can be presented in either a positive or negative way, Seaman says. For example, someone with a positive Mars has courage, is a leader and a top athlete, whereas a negative Mars shows violence and aggression. Someone with a positive Neptune shows compassion, and selflessness. “A person like Mother Theresa,” Seaman says. But someone with a negative Neptune generally has addictions, and is passive and powerless. “It’s the same energy, just different ways that it can be expressed. It explains why people can have similar charts but lead two very different lives.”
A member of MENSA, the international high IQ society, Seaman says while she has seen the merging of psychology and astrology increase, it’s not currently taught in any mainstream schools. “Astrology would be a wonderful addition to the study of psychology,” she says. Quoting Richard Tarnas, Ph.D., a Harvard University professor, she says, “Psychology textbooks of future generations will look back on modern psychologists working without the aid of astrology as being like medieval astronomers working without the aid of the telescope.”
You can contact Dianne Seaman at 610- 488-6686 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
– Jennifer Post Stoudt