December 05th, 2013

Women And Astrology: But Where are the Guys? (I Know Where the Gays Are)

Not much changes in the world of astrology — when it comes to gender. (Mind you, my observations are subjective and based on what I’ve observed in the United States, so there’s my disclaimer right out of the gate.)

Women comprise the largest group of attendees for classes and seminars and conventions. And also, women hold professional positions more than men, meaning they teach astrology and work full time as astrologers.

The majority of my clients are women. In fact, it is so rare to receive a call from a man that whenever I do it feels like I’ve slipped into an alternate non-astrology reality.

When I commenced with my brilliant career, as a student, the majority — over 80 percent — of the folks in our astrology class were women. And both of my initial teachers were women.

Men, back then — which is to say during the heyday of astrology’s revival in the early 70s, were usually gay. And I’d say that almost every man I interacted with, that was even slightly interested in astrology, was gay.

Oddly, the majority of men I met that were heterosexual were intensely involved with sidereal astrology. It seems too cliched to be true, but the more literal approach of sidereal astrology appealed to the traditional masculine mindset: Rational, scientific and, again, literal.  (Please do not write comments below about this post being sexist, I’m simply opening up an inquiry here with different sets of impressions).

Speaking of impressions, I’m forever grateful to the colorful tribe of students I studied with in the early days — women and men. A madcap array of eccentrics, many of whom I can still picture as if I’d just seen them walking down the street yesterday.

The men in our group were often decked out in caftans (right) or black turtlenecks and many of them sported huge gold medallions declaring their birth sign. The women were in saris and muumuus or psychedelic shifts and capris, tinkling and clattering with dangling charms and trinkets. It was a genuine jamboree of sincere seekers (and oddities) that coincided with a moment in astrology — as a pop cultural phenomenon that extended way beyond the confines of our classroom and into the public square and mindset of the dawning Aquarian age — that I’m proud to say I was a part of. Thank you Linda Goodman!

And so, yet again, propelled by women.

Years later, when I worked a stint as a telephone psychic for one of those annoying networks that dominated the late night TV world with non-stop promises from Dionne Warwick for fortune and eternal love, I kept logs of all of the calls I fielded. And again, it was always the women dialing for the dollars — or the romance — usually the later which, as a topic for a ‘reading’ (god, I loathe that word) occurred ninety percent of the time. “But if he’s moved in with another women does that still mean he doesn’t love me? What does my chart say?”

I’ve theories as to why there are not more men in astrology, and I’d suppose that, too, over the years, the percentages have shifted a great deal from my historical memories. Meaning, the contemporary astrology conventions I’ve attended have more men in attendance — and yes, even more heterosexual men — not that people are walking around with placards announcing their sexual preferences, but possessing a natural eye for “peers” (i.e., gaydar), I can usually tell. (Well, there was that one mistake that time with Kenneth — but never mind).

So, anyway, rather than me babbling on with my theories as to why women dominate the astrological world, I’d like to hear your ideas. Please share them below.

And as soon as I’ve changed from my caftan to my new turtleneck, I’ll sit down at the keyboard and join in the discussion.
 

Illustration by the incomparable Virgil Finlay, date unknown.


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Filed Under: Astrology and Zeitgeist