Astrodrama can take the dialogue between the selves one step further.
This article addresses how I use it both in a one-on-one therapeutic space
and in a group process.”
Background of Astrodrama
In ancient times, theatre was a cathartic medium designed to heal through direct contact with the deepest levels of consciousness, the ancient Greek dramas were rituals intended to invoke the power of the gods and give participants an opportunity to work with the energies directly.
Astrodrama is the modern version of this process, giving us the framework to make the archetypal energies visible and lively without restricting their multidimensional levels of expression.
Astrodrama can take a variety of forms; it can concretise the inner life (the planets) by choosing people or objects to represent them. We can role play aspects, signs and transits by allowing the students to act as conduits for these energies or we can re-imagine an aspect of our behaviour, by creating a scenario whereby a square turns into a trine, allowing other possibilities of expression to emerge.
Case study of Astrodrama used in therapy
I used these processes spontaneously with a client called Anabelle1. She came to me she was in the midst of the following transit. Saturn conjunct her natal Uranus/north node in Gemini/tenth house. She spoke of a vague, but strong feeling that she could have a new life away from the place she lived, while simultaneously criticising herself for not being satisfied with what she had. I asked her to choose an object, which could stand for her doubt and criticism, and a variety of objects to symbolise what this new life might contain.
She chose a stone and a frog for the self that ‘holds me back’ and for ‘the new life’ she chose a lion, a rose, a shell and pen. She introduced the lion as representing her new life, the rose for relationship, the shell for a home of her own and the pen to signify her desire to be a recognised writer. She said she felt the lion was challenging her to ‘just get on with it.’ I asked to take up the role of the lion and to speak to the stone and the frog. “Just get on with it, stop pissing about, if you want to write, do it.”
I played the role of the stone and frog, voicing her previous statement ‘ I should be satisfied with what I’ve got’. We then changed roles; I took on the role of Uranus (the new life) and spoke about my vision o being a writer and of having things I wanted to say to the world.
I asked her to play Saturn (the holding back self) –she began voicing fears and doubts, but soon ran out of puff, as it became clear that the needs and desires of the Uranus/North node held more energy for her. We were then able to go deeper into the root of the doubts, which she felt stemmed from messages she’d received from her working class father and family.
This enabled her to see how these self-imposed limitations were blocking the expression of her ‘genius’.
Why Astrodrama works
This way of working brings the birthchart alive for the client by enacting ‘real life’ situations then making the astrological connections to provide further insight.
Astrodrama can take a variety of forms
- We can concretise our inner life (the planetary patterns) by choosing people or objects to represent them.
- We can role-play aspects, signs and transits allowing the students to act as a conduits for the energies.
- We can re-imagine an aspect of our behaviour by creating a scenario whereby a square turns into a trine allowing other possibilities of expression to emerge.
Case study of Astrodrama used in in a group process
A theatrical approach can also be used effectively in a classroom setting. A lesson on Venus took place in a room, decorated with candles, flowers and cloth and an evocative piece of music from a French film playing. Two young women came dancing into the room, playing the central character who was a very sensual and flirtatious young gypsy singer/dancer. This set the tone for the evening and prompted a lively discussion about the participant’s own experience and expression of their Venusian self.
Following on from this session and continuing the artistic/creative themes of Venus, participants were asked to create a visual representation of what they valued, what they found beautiful and what gave them pleasure, I provided them with large sheets of paper, magazines and drawing utensils.
There were a variety of responses to this exercise:
- Elizabeth1– created a three dimensional piece of found objects in the house, silk cloths, fur and lots of gold fabric (Venus in Taurus square Pluto.)
- Sarah1– found the exercise very difficult and hid in a corner of the room away from everyone else and began painting. While extremely reluctant to show her piece of work, the other students responded positively to it and one woman commissioned a painting from her. This was quite a turning point for Sarah who has since begun training in the visual arts. (Venus in Libra in the eleventh square Saturn in Capricorn in the second.)
Music is also a rich resource for Astrology. Songwriters and Musicians create music that eloquently expresses the spirit of the different planetary energies. At the beginning of a workshop on Mars I played a tape compilation of music that was were gutsy, aggressive, feisty, challenging, primitive with lots of drumming. It set the tone for the evening, which included physical theatre and dance.
- Names changed to ensure anonymity.