Book by Greg Bogart
Review by Arlan Wise
Greg Bogart writes really good books. In Astrology and Spiritual Awakening, Greg has taken one of these good books and made it better. It’s like when a person gains weight and the new pounds go to all the right places. The original version of Astrology and Spiritual Awakening, which was published in 1994, stands on its own as a great book. Now, twenty years later, Greg adds the wisdom and insights he’s learned as time went by. He has updated the life stories, noticeably in the section on Ram Dass, who had his life-changing stroke after the book was in print.
This is a spiritual self-help book. It instructs astrologers and those who love astrology how to see their charts as a map for their spiritual path. It is also a good book for learning more astrology and to see the many meanings of the planets, signs, houses, and aspects through a spiritual lens. Greg changes the dial on the astrological kaleidoscope and gives us interpretations of the basics of astrology from a spiritual perspective. He uses the charts of spiritual leaders (e.g., Pema Chodron, Raman Maharshi, Ammachi) and also spiritual musicians (Ravi Shankar, Hazrat Inayat Khan, John Coltrane), thus highlighting the connection between spirit and music. (Greg is an accomplished musician so he knows this.)
Each section of the book is a gem. You will learn how to find the type of yoga to practice that fits you best. (Yoga here is used in its ancient sense with the popular physical hatha yoga being just one of the types.) He shows how to “discern the form of spiritual practice that’s most appropriate to your natal chart, and to the transit and progression operative during a particular period.”
Greg explains Dane Rudhyar’s ideas throughout the text. One can feel Rudhyar sitting on his shoulder like an aged Jiminy Cricket telling him what to say. It is valuable and precious information that Greg preserves by translating Dane Rudhyar, who he knew personally. Greg teaches us Rudhyar’s concept of the 6 Shaktis and expands it by explaining its roots in Kashmir Shaivism which Greg learned from Swami Muktananda.
There are complete and complex astrological biographies of seven spiritual teachers. The chart delineations are brilliant. This section, which is at the end of the book, gives good examples of how to use all that you have read. He closes the book with a chapter that urges you to write your own astrobiography.
In Greg’s words which start this book:
“Astrology is the yoga of time. It is a form of sacred knowledge that teaches us to live consciously as embodied beings in a temporal world…This book describes how astrology can be utilized to understand the stages and facets of the spiritual path, the process of awakening to a more encompassing reality or consciousness – God, Atman, Buddha, the Pure Light.
Even if you own the original edition of Astrology and Spiritual Awakening, you want to have this newer version in your library.