When it comes to things like astrology and palm healing, I’m admittedly a skeptic. So when local astrologer and Reiki healer Curtis Williams wrote New Times to see if we’d be interested in publishing an article or two about the practices, I suggested that instead of him writing the article, he do my chart and give me a little Reiki session and I’d write something. Being a wiseacre, I thought it would be a riot to bash this nonsense.
- PHOTO BY GLEN STARKEY
- IT’S IN THE STARS : Curtis Williams explains my astrological chart, and lucky for me, Uranus is in the 10th house!
But--dammit--Curtis Williams is an awesome, super nice guy, earnest and fully invested in this stuff, and, as my chart explains, I’m not a total dick (technically it says I’m a “compassionate and caring person”) so I just can’t make too much fun of him. And you know, maybe there’s something to this stuff.
The actual chart is based on science, the location of planets and stars in relation to the exact moment and location of my birth at 8:25 p.m. on March 15, 1962, in Wauwatosa, Wisc. (43ºN0’43” 088ºW02’01”). Science! And then all you need is someone who knows how to interpret the stuff spat out by the Solar Fire Astrology Software. That, says Curtis, is the hard part.
“There are a lot of people who claim to be astrologers, but they’re not,” he tells me.
He, on the other hand, has a masters in astrology: “I studied with world renowned astrologer Noel Tyl for five years. I’m also a graduate of the Academy of AstroPsychology directed by Dr. Glenn Perry, whereupon I received my diploma and certification in astropsychology with an emphasis on depth psychology.”
Usually when people come to him, they’re going through a crisis, but he says the real value of astrology is as a predictor to avoid crisis, which is good, because I’m not going through a crisis at all! I’m just dandy! Still, he suggests I come to his house with some questions to ask, which will help guide his interpretation of my chart.
- PHOTO BY GLEN STARKEY
- LET THE HEALING BEGIN : Curtis Williams stands by his Reiki healing table, where he took me on a relaxing spiritual quest down a hole by a redwood tree.
Of course, a lot of the stuff in the printout seems generic: I speak from my heart. I value my personal relationships. Yada yada. Curtis himself, however, strikes me as a very intuitive person, and as he explains my chart, I can’t help but feel it’s offering him some understanding of who I am and what my future potentially holds.
“Your Libra is rising, which tells me you don’t like arguments and that you’d rather make peace than have something difficult going on.”
That’s totally true!
“Your sun sign is Pisces, but it’s ruled by Neptune, an archetype that’s nebulous in nature and rules alcohol and drugs.”
Wow, I totally love Jameson and Miller Lite!
Curtis goes into great details and makes suggestions for my future, like writing a book or novel, because “the time is now.”
“The way I see astrology is that it is a tremendous tool in discerning the potential of each individual, with terrific predictive qualities for career, partnership, and children,” he says. “Astrology, like many other sciences, can only gauge what the potential and probabilities may be, which makes free will so important.”
After the reading, I only have about another 15 minutes before another appointment, but Curtis gets me on his Reiki table for a quick session, in which I’m told to close my eyes, imagine myself walking out the front door, sitting under a redwood tree, looking between my legs and seeing a hole, climbing into the hole, and staying there. Then I hear Curtis moving around me, touching my head, shoulders, feet. Then he leads me out of the hole and back to the house. When it’s over, he asks me, “Who did you meet in the hole?”
“No one, but I feel very relaxed and refreshed,” I say. I love a nap, after all.
Curtis explains that he’s a Reiki master teacher in two branches: Usui Reiki and Karuna Reiki, “both healing modalities that are of tremendous value. Reiki is really so simple in its nature and application, but tremendously complex in its actions of healing and relaxation. More importantly, I would like people to understand that anyone can do Reiki, unlike astrology, and that after several weekends of learning, they too can practice Reiki, which benefits everyone and everything, leaving nothing that cannot be affected by the positive nature and quality of Reiki energy. I feel that it’s important for the public to know that Reiki can do no harm, which is a wonderful assurance to those that feel that this may conflict with their religion and or personal belief systems.”
I’m still a skeptic, but the power of the human mind to both intuit and suggest is undeniable, and who am I to dismiss astrology, which has been in practice for some 6,000 years, or Reiki, developed in 1922 by Japanese Buddhist Mikao Usui?
I mean, after all, my seventh degree of Virgo says, “Part of Body: Rectum. Sabian Symbol: A harem.” You can’t argue with science!
Glen Starkey takes a beating and keeps on bleating. Keep up with him via twitter at twitter.com/glenstarkey, friend him at Myspace.com/glenstarkey, or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.