WHICH are you -- Astrology buff or buffoon? Don't answer just yet. Consider carefully all the information which follows before you give your considered response.
A "buff" is a fan, one who is enthusiastic in his support of something or someone he likes or believes in. He is always on the lookout for opportunities to "buff" or "polish" his pet interest; he is indeed a bonafide booster. Fortunately for Astrology, its number of true buffs (which includes legitimate astrologers, advanced students of Astrology, and those who know from experience of Astrology's usefulness -- in spite of the phony psychic industry) is quite large and is increasing steadily. Of course, each of us would be inclined to think of ourselves as the "good guys," or genuine Astrology buffs.
A"buffoon" is a clown, a fool, a jester, one who by his comments and/or actions appears ridiculous, unreal and unbelievable. (Included in this category are all the astrological counterfeits, of course.) They may have too little knowledge or reliable information, or they may abuse and misuse what little they do have, or might well combine all of these negatives and even invent others. The pathetic fact is that the buffoon may not even be consciously aware that he or she is being a clown and actually doing more harm than good for a cause that he may think he is "helping." Naturally, most of us would not like to think that we might be the "bad guys," or those odious Astrology buffoons.
Those much wiser than Elbert Wade have said that a little learning is a dangerous thing, and he is inclined to believe them. We all know those certain individuals who speak with such great authority shakily based upon the most superfical knowledge and fragmentary understanding. The Astrology buffoon is just such an animal. As an example, if friend buffoon could, in turn, assume the identity of all twelve zodiacal signs, he might explain away the negative responses and inclinations of each sign as follows.
AS ARIES: "You'll just have to get used to my pushiness and my somewhat headstrong ways. I am Aries, the Ram. Of course, I have a very quick temper, but don't blame me; it's my Mars-rulership. And don't bore me with any type of resistance because I won't play the game if I am not allowed to win."
AS TAURUS: "Don't even try to rush me. I will eat as slowly and drink as much and as often as I wish. It is my Taurean nature and Venus-rulership, you know. You would be foolish indeed to even try to get me to change my mind or my ways. Taurus is supposed to be bull-headed and stubborn."
AS GEMINI: "You should know that to me 'variety is the spice of life.' I can't help it if I'm interested in so many things that I seldom if ever stay with anything long enough to really master it. I simply get bored. Sure, I am a little fickle -- so what? It's my Mercury-ruled, star-fated duality don't you know."
AS CANCER: "I have more right than anybody to be moody and changeable any time I want to be. My Moon-rulership makes me that way. Further, I can be sensitive and possessive whenever I please. After all, the Moon changes its 'moods' more often than any other heavenly body, so don't blame me when I do likewise."
AS LEO: "I was born to be a natural show-off. The Sun, my ruler, gives me the inborn right to both demand and command the spotlight at all times. I can't help it if you think I often upstage everybody else. After all, I can't resist it because it's in the stars that I am naturally a star."
AS VIRGO: "I wish I could relax and learn to enjoy life even a little bit more, but I am so concerned with details and am such a perfectionist I get nervous when I see anything that's not perfect in every detail, or not in proper order. It also frustrates me that I am far from being perfect myself much of the time, but I do expect everybody else to be perfect -- and I criticize them if they are not. After all, Mercury rules me."
AS LIBRA: "Don't rush me, please. You know that it takes a long time for me to make up my mind about almost anything. You must realize how much I want to avoid making an unfair judgment, and heaven forbid that I should make a mistake. Decisions, decisions -- why must my Venus-run life be filled with so many?"
AS SCORPIO: "I can't help it if I am over-sexed. After all, I am a Scorpio, you know, a sex-oriented individual. Sure, I am hard-driving, determined to produce results, and always ready to punish others and myself if I fall short of having my desires fulfilled, but that's the way it is when Pluto is your ruling planet."
AS SAGITTARIUS: "Don't bother me with details; just show me the overall picture. Jupiter, my ruling planet, can't be bothered with small matters. Of course, I am aloof and hard to get to know, but aren't all philosophers and wise men? And my sign is the sign of philosophy and wisdom. It is my birthright to hit the nail right on the head with what I say. I can't be concerned whether others appreciate this or not."
AS CAPRICORN: "Don't tell me to smile and not take life so seriously; it's old Saturn that makes me worry and be negative much of the time. I've got to be totally business-like if I am to climb in this world, and I have to use everything and everyone around in order to do so, and, well, you are somebody and you are around."
AS AQUARIUS: "Don't ever try to guess what I will say or do next. Even I don't have the foggiest notion. It is just my way and I can't help it. My unpredictability is caused totally by Uranus, my ruling planet. Surely, at times I can even be cranky and totally impersonal, but that is just normal with us Aquarians. It is our only way of life--whether you like it or not."
AS PISCES: "I can't help it if I am a natural romanticist and much too gullible at times. After all, I'm an idealistic Neptune-controlled Pisces. Being 'wishy-washy' is my nature, and you will just have to get used to it whether or not you either like or understand it. I hope you will. Emotional? Of course I am! Aren't all water signs totally emotional?"
The above rather stylized comments which might be uttered by the Astrology buffoon would not be used by the true buff since the buff knows the statements are both too general and at the same time tend to present a self-defeating picture of the true principles and purposes of real Astrology. They offer too easy an excuse for an individual's lack of productivity, and further encourage the non-constructive practice of "passing the buck."
The Astrology buff understands that no person is "fated" with all the negatives or "bad" characteristics of any one sign. He does not deal in generalities. He realizes that for any person to be a pure representation of any one sign, all eight planets, the Sun and Moon, as well as the ascendant would have to be in the same sign. This is an astronomical impossibility for anyone alive today.
The only dates this was even close to a possibility in recent times were February 4th and 5th of 1962 when Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Sun and Moon were all in Aquarius. (Note: A similar satellitium also occurred in Sagittarius in late 1987.)
In view of the fact that nobody is a pure Aries, Taurus, Gemini -- or any other sign, but instead is a blending of many sign influences, a very appropriate analogy would be to think of each individual as a "mixed drink"-- a blend or concoction having many ingredients of greater or lesser amounts, and combined in a unique way unlike those of any other individual on earth. The Astrology buff knows that the Sun-Sign is not always the essentially-active ingredient. Further he knows that it is this mixing and blending which makes it possible for us to be more versatile and more capable of adapting to others and our constantly-changing environment. The Astrology buffoon seems to take no notice of this blending at all. To him/her, if your Sun is in Aries--or any other sign, you are the total essence of that sign, period! This view is very much the same as the "curse" of one unfortunate enough to have all astrological influences only in one sign -- totally one-sided.
Most of us know someone whom we likely label as "dirty minded" -- that individual who seems to be obsessed with matters sexual, and seems to have the knack of twisting just about everything into an off-color reference to the vulgar side of the subject. Reminds of the humorous situation where a psychiatrist showed a male client a single straight line which he had just drawn on a blank sheet of paper and asked the client's impression, to which he replied, "A naked woman." Somewhat shocked, the doctor scrawled another straight line and again asked for a reply. The retort was, "Two naked women"...after which the counselor explained to his client that his problem was that he was obsessed with sex. Somewhat puzzled, the man replied, "Me, obsessed with sex? What about you, doctor? You are the one who's drawing the dirty pictures!"
Vis-a-vis this "joke," simply substitute the subject of Astrology for sex and you have an example of the most excruciating type of astrological buffoon. This is the individual who eats, drinks and sleeps the subject 24 hours a day. These "well-meaning" clowns seem totally unable to communicate in any other area, often to the utter frustration of family members, friends, would-be friends and former friends. It is next to impossible for them to accept the fact that not everyone is as interested as they in their opinions of and about Astrology.
Incidentally, these buffoons frequently are the same individuals who shy away from others whom they are quick to label as "religious fanatics," "social bores" and "political nuts." Would but they could both see and hear themselves as others see and hear them. Fortunately, the Astrology buff is well aware that one obsessed with any subject, including Astrology, can fairly and honestly be labeled as "weird" and called a "nut" or "fanatic." He avoids such a pitfall by keeping his interest in proper perspective and grimaces rather openly at his poor friend buffoon's shameful buffoonery.
The typical buffoon is an authority on all matters astrological. You may hear him say such completely unfounded and cryptic statements as the ones following. "Well, she does have Moon opposition Mars, and you know what that means!" or "What do you expect of a Leo with Aries ascending?" or, "Sorry, your seventh-house ruler is retrograde -- you will never marry!" or, "When your Mercury squares Mars at 3:01 p.m. next Monday, you will have a wreck and break your neck!"
It is truly amazing! The Astrology buffoon can just glance briefly at the planets' positions in an ephemeris and tell you, without reservation, the specific details about all the tragedies, tribulations and exciting things which are going to happen to you this year, even years into the future! Fortunately, the legitimate astrologer and/or the advanced student buff would not know or be unwise enough to tell you all this even after preparing your chart and studying it carefully. They well may indicate important trends and highlights and comment intelligently on various probabilities; however, they won't attempt to tell your "fortune."
And because of what some astrological buffoons say and do, far too many misinformed clients may utter such statements as these when dealing with legitimate astrologers: "Oh, why won't you give the serial numbers on that thousand-dollar bill so-and-so told me I am going to find on Main Street next Tuesday afternoon at 4:30?" "Why can't my horoscope be more sensational, entertaining, dashing, exciting?" "Why won't you tell me what I want to hear--whether it's altogether true or not?" "Why can't you make my life more exciting?" "Wasn't I a rich king, princess or something in a previous incarnation?" "Won't I go on to rule the universe in another life?"
If you want this kind of "action," seek out the buffoon; don't expect it of the serious buff. He/she has advanced far past the "fairy -tale" stages in his study and understanding of a serious and worthwhile science-art -- which never was intended as a technique to tell anyone's "fortune."
The Astrology buffoon will seldom communicate more than a few moments with anyone before asking their Sun-Sign, hour of birth and very likely the year as well, not considering that not everyone cares to reveal their age to those they know well, much less strangers. From that point on, the new acquaintance normally is made to feel that he/she is being analyzed, dissected as it were. His every move and comment is being noted, studied. This inhibits the normal relaxed flow of intercourse and may well cause him to feel ill-at-ease. Can you really blame him for welcoming the first opportunity to get away from such scrutiny? Further, it may be quite easy for him to find reasons not to be with "friend" buffoon in the future -- or to have a very positive opinion about Astrology or all those who claim to know the subject.
The buff may, in time, get the same birth data but in such a way that his new acquaintance will not even be aware, or will not feel in any way threatened by divulging it. The buff will utilize more tact in observing what his new friend says and does rather than attempting openly to "examine" on the scene. Consequently, the buff gets the benefit of valid knowledge through first-hand experience with the different astrological "animals" -- without pressure or being too obvious -- and gets a better "character reading" than does the buffoon.
Quite often the buffoon desires and seeks after a "following." We often find this buffoon working as a so-called professional "astrologer" or among advanced students of the subject. The ego is so in need of being pumped up that he/she takes great pleasure in stringing his poor and unfortunate "clients" or others along by attempting to make them feel they need his almost-daily "guidance" in order to function. In essence, he attempts to addict certain of his "clients" or friends to his astrological "wisdom" to the point he does them much more harm than good. This buffoon is really no clown at all; he is, in fact, psychologically dangerous. He is sick and attempts to spread his "disease" to others who in many ways may be even weaker than he.
The true buff has too much respect for human dignity to do this sort of thing. He attempts to help others with his knowledge as they move along the road to greater independence and self-reliance. He does not want others to come running to him to make all their decisions for them. He will offer guidance and any information he may have available when asked, but his ego does not require that others "worship" him for any reason whatsoever.
In all fairness, most of us would have to admit that we have within us bits of both the buff and buffoon. Exactly how do you rate yourself? Let us hope that the qualities of the buff strongly dominate your motivations and acts. If the buffoon in you is too strong, do yourself and Astrology a noble service by eliminating these less-than-positive characteristics and inclinations through a lot more Astrology study and leave the clown to get his ego pumped at the psychic fairs or other sideshows where he no doubt will be well received and loved -- at least briefly.