Glasscock, Robert—a personal anecdote, by Robert Glasscock

Somebody once said to me, resentfully: “You get everything you want, don’t you?”

Now, that’s an interesting question and one I’d never thought about. I realized that, to this man, it seemed I DID get everything I wanted.

At every gathering of astrologers I attend, it seems at some point I hear the same laments:

“It’s impossible to make a living as an astrologer.”
“No one wants to pay for an astrology reading.”
“Astrology will always be on the fringe of society.”

Why do we say these things so ourselves? What makes us believe it? What are the facts behind these opinions?

I say to all astrologers – Let’s revolutionize the way we think about what we do.

In Kepler's academic and its certificate program, all graduates must create a demonstration of learning - a final project.

I know that it seems like a daunting task that looms at the end of the senior year, the senior project but it need not be. All that is really needed planning and the help of our great teachers. In the article below is the rough sketch of what my senior project idea became. I was curious to know how astrologers fared professionally in comparison to other established professions, including the one that I had been practicing for 40 years. I thought that the best people to ask the question to be the professional astrologers and the place would be United Astrology Conference in Denver. The rest of this article is the outcome of the survey that would morph into my final senior project and go on to be published in the ISAR journal The International Astrologer.

The definition of a professional has changed over time, particularly since WWII. Beginning in the 1950's, fields that required significant education and were practiced primarily by upper middle class individuals, began developing educational standards and increasingly sophisticated certification programs. In those fields (for example, law, medicine or psychology) only those individuals who had passed both the educational and certification requirement could call themselves a professional.

In fields like plumbing, education and certification still apply, but the education is geared primarily toward a practical application of knowledge and so is called vocational.

As astrology became more popular in the 1960's and 1970's, individuals who charged for charts began to call themselves professionals and considered astrology to be a profession. But this is a different definition than that held by the mainstream culture.

In the 1990's and later, astrological organizations developed voluntary certification programs. Although these programs are receiving increasing interest, astrologers today do not have to go through the same level of extensive professional education and certification required by other professions. Without this, astrology remains a vocation that calls itself a profession. The cultural terminology has shifted, but astrology has not yet caught up with that shift.

The trend toward a stricter definition of professional continues, and more fields are developing education and certification programs. Will this trend affect astrologers and their practice?

Video Editorial by Lee Lehman, PhD: Part 1: Profession or Vocation?; Part 2: Profession vs. Vocation