Empathy, Compassion and Boundaries in the Astrological 12th House

Hello Dear Readers,

I have been going back through the posts on this blog, which I have been working on since 2009 – more than 12 years now! And in some of those earlier posts, I feel a strong desire to make serious revisions. For the most part though, I refrain from doing so, and add a separate paragraph saying, “Revised 2021…” And two of those posts, from back in 2010, are about the astrological 12th house (Western astrology). Hence my desire to touch on this topic today.

I have been studying and practicing various forms of healing bodywork since 2003 (when I got my first Reiki Attunement) and certainly since 2005 (when I dove in deeply in studying and practicing Craniosacral Therapy, Zapchen Somatics and Tibetan Buddhism). As a Pisces, and someone with Neptune square my natal Sun in my astrology chart, and also having Pluto conjunct my Libra Moon… I have been learning about boundaries my entire life.

What do I mean by boundaries? Psychological boundaries – the ability to stand up for myself, for my needs and my desires. The ability and clarity to know what those are! Boundaries are the ability to get in touch with my authentic “NO!” and to express that objection. Without being in touch with my authentic “NO,” I will never get to my authentic “YES.” The interesting thing here is that stating our objection also means being in touch with our anger, irritation and frustration. Can I express those? If I feel resentment building up about something, can I express that in a timely manner? Or do I let things bottle up inside until a month down the road I explode in a manner which is not appropriate to the context or situation?

Boundaries also speak to my ability to be in my own skin – literally and figuratively. Can I be around someone who is suffering without taking on some of their pain? In the past, that was very difficult for me. Can I feel sensations in my body? Can I come down out of my head and into my heart? Can I notice how exhausted I actually am (if appropriate) or do I continually keep pushing through and overriding?

All of these questions might go back to the Astrological 12th house. For more on what the astrological 12th house represents, see my previous posts from back in 2010 – https://wordpress.com/post/astrodharma.me/1007 or https://wordpress.com/post/astrodharma.me/1022 where I discuss the 12th house from a Buddhist perspective (among other points of view).

What is the difference between Empathy and Compassion? It is actually a big difference. Empathy is being able to put oneself in another’s shoes – can I feel something along the lines of what this person is feeling? Have I experienced something like this before? Empathy is caring with someone else. Being with them, sharing with them and caring with them.

Compassion is a bigger sense of caring. It is caring for others. It is wishing them well. It is also an awareness that someone’s suffering (at least on some deep level) is caused by their own karma. (I know this sounds indifferent or cold – rather we want them to be happy, to be content, to be free of suffering, but some people just keep creating the causes of suffering over and over again.) If we can benefit them great! If not, we can’t attempt to take on everyone’s burden. Compassion does not mean getting down in the trenches and feeling into one person’s suffering (that is more along the lines of empathy).

Compassion says, “Oh gosh, you are drowning! Here, I will throw you a life preserver.” Someone with high empathy says, “Oh no! You are drowning, here I will jump in and save you.” Obviously, the conventional wisdom is, if someone is drowning you always throw something to them first – a rope, a floatation device, a life preserver, etc. That is so they don’t take you down with them. Then you help them get back to shore, make sure they are okay – get any water out of their lungs, and then, later, once they are stabilized, you can ask them, “Hey, can I teach you how to swim?”

Because this distinction (compassion vs empathy) and boundary work has been my life’s work (along with offering various healing modalities), I am very good at helping other people through this process: of lowering the empathy dial if they are empaths and psychic sponges – always taking on other people’s suffering. Ideally we want to have high compassion all the time, but we want to be able to choose how much empathy we engage in – and make it contextually appropriate. We want to know how to be present for my own needs and my own process. Then I can give of myself if I have the energy for doing that.

To plug my own bodywork and healing practice…

In my bodywork and somatic therapy practice, I help to answer these questions:

How can we turn our sensitivity into a superpower? Or at least turn it into a tool that we can take out from time to time, and then put away when appropriate?

Did my parents or caretakers have good boundaries? Were they really good at self-sacrificing and constantly giving to others? Were they very sensitive? How did that affect me?

How can I learn somatic tools to reduce my extremely high levels of empathy? To reconnect to my self, my wholeness and my health?

Let me know if you want to schedule a time to chat or if you would like to schedule a treatment. You can email me at: kirby [at] mkirbymoore [dot] com

Wishing you well on your journey!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

Heading into brief retreat, use Patreon to stay up-to-date

This material is copyrighted by Kirby Moore.  Reproduction without permission is prohibited.  To support my business and blogging efforts, please visit my website. More recently, I have begun teaching Astrology classes on Trauma-Informed Astrology, see http://www.traumainformedastrology.com for more! Thank you for visiting!

Hello Readers!

I am heading toward the mountains for a short one-week respite (on Thursday). I am staying at an AirBnB house near the Shenandoah National Park (in Virginia, USA) – so there is supposed to great hiking and biking (which I am definitely looking forward to!)

I will also do some Dharma practice, maybe a Sur offering or two (a Buddhist smoke offering of sorts), some yoga and Qigong as well! First and foremost, it is my intention to recharge my batteries. It has been a full year for sure (for all of us I imagine!) and I have not had a break since the 90-day retreat ended last May.

On Patreon, I will post little updates and videos for subscribers. You can get access to these for just $3 / month! Here is the link if you are interested: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true

I am planning to offer little updates, but also videos about self care techniques, body scan meditations, ways to ground ourselves easier and more!

Let me know if you have questions or comments.

Thanks for visiting!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

T.I. Astrology Class Level One Complete

Dear Readers,

We just wrapped up an awesome class! Trauma Informed Astrology Fundamentals Level One – an introduction to the Western Astrology chart, with discussions about the Autonomic Nervous System along with tools and somatic exercises to rest down and come back to well-being!

It was fantastic – a big learning experience for me too. It is one thing to understand all of this, but to convey it to multiple types of different learners is another level. Can I understand this material in 4 or 5 different ways? Can I find videos, graphics, poems and other multi-modal ways of learning it?

I did a great job overall! Yes of course there are little tweaks that I will do when I teach it again. But that is to be expected – I’m sure I will continue to tweak little things about it the more I continue to learn and grow.

In the last class, we unpacked what a Day charts indicates, Night chart, discussed the Quadrants and the Hemispheres and even got into simple exercises to stimulate the Ventral Vagus branch (of the Vagus nerve). Plus we previewed Level Two – starting on May 20th see my site: http://www.traumainformedastrology.com and had a little 5 minute dance party to dance our way into the future.

You can subscribe to my Patreon site to watch all of Level One videos for just $35 / month. Meaning, if you have a lot of time, for just $35, you can watch all 16 hours of this level One class! What a deal?! Here is the Patreon link if you want to peek at it or sign up: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true

Let me know if you want to sign up for Level Two – starting May 20th and going for 8 weeks (all Thursday evenings), all online for now. I am even offering 2 sliding scale slots – which so far have not been taken.

Have a great weekend!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

Update to T.I. Astrology Class Level Two

Hello Readers,

I am writing to inform you that Level Two of Trauma Informed Astrology Fundamentals starts May 20th AND that people with some experience in astrology can just jump right in. Of course, I would highly recommend you subscribe to my Patreon channel (here: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true) and watch the Level One class recordings which are available for just $35 / month!

Also, if you have not taken the previous Level One class, I will want to chat with you briefly to make sure you have some access to support, in case you get a little activated in class. For the most part however, we will still be covering basic topics like Explicit vs Implicit Memory, the Amygdala / Hippocampus anxiety loop, the Triune Brain and the Threat Response. Plus we will deepen info on the Window of Tolerance and even get further into the Polyvagal Theory.

On the astrological side, we will complete the discussion of the Planets, get into the meanings of the Houses and even delve into the Astrological Aspects. There will be a demo – possibly from a participant in the class. And there will be a debrief of the demo.

All of this will go along with learning new gentle Somatic Exercises to Move Toward Well-being. We will review a couple basic exercises that we covered in Level One, and we will add in some new ones. Depending on the classes capacity, we may even get into the Intermediate Zapchen exercises!

For further info and to sign up, visit my site: https://www.traumainformedastrology.com/classes and remember to click on Fundamentals Two.

You can also go back to a previous post on here for more info: https://wordpress.com/post/astrodharma.me/6382

On traumainformedastrology.com, you can leave me a comment or ask questions. Feel free to comment on here also, just know it is a public forum.

Thank you for reading and have a great week,

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

Very happy with Trauma Informed Astrology site

Hello Readers!

I exchanged for some good web design work. And the site is starting to look great! Take a peek!

Also, let me know if you are interested in taking Trauma Informed Astrology Fundamentals Level Two Class! If you have good support around you and you know a good amount of astrology, you can just hop right in. I would strongly recommend you watch the Level One recordings, but we would love to have you. There are a few spots remaining. See my site for more info: http://www.traumainformedastrology.com

Thank you for reading, thank you for your comments and for joining me on this dynamic journey of suffering leading to quality healing!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

I got professional photos done (and Wow!)

Hey there dear ones,

I worked with Jen Fariello in Charlottesville (VA) and she is a fantastic photographer. Here are some of my favorites!

Hope you (all) are doing well!


Kirby in March 2021, compassionate, strong & approachable
Kirby: Warm heart, big smile, clear & creative

Come and receive bodywork from me! Or an Astrology Interpretation.

In my office at Long Tide Healing Collective in C’ville VA

Level Two of Trauma-Informed Astrology Class

Hello Dear Readers!

If you are new to my blog or site, let me introduce myself. My name is Kirby Moore, and I have been practicing Western Astrology from a spiritual perspective since 2003. In addition, I have been practicing Somatic Processing (emotional-process-oriented bodywork) since 2005. The combination of Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy, Polyvagal Theory, Somatic Experiencing and Birth Process Work (PPN – pre- and perinatal psychology training) is a rare set of skills to find in one practitioner. I have training in all of them, and when you add in the Astrology and the my contemplative practices as a Buddhist practitioner, there are very few, if any people out there who offer all that I am able to. Therefore, a few years ago, I first had the idea of blending everything I offer and calling it “Trauma-Informed Astrology.”

I sat on this idea for a couple years as I got my bodywork practice thriving. And in 2019 I began jotting down notes about potential classes and offerings. Of course, 2020 hit us all pretty hard. But I was still able to create some classes, blending Autonomic Nervous System material, Spiritual Astrology and gentle Somatic Exercises to assist us to move toward well-being and alignment. And in February of 2021 I began teaching (online classes).

The first level – Trauma Informed Astrology Fundamentals One has gone well. We are almost finished with the first eight classes for it. And in May of 2021, I am looking to teach the next level! Here is a little information of where we are in Level One (about to wrap up), then the level two info is below:

I am excited to be leading these classes. In class 7 (of 8) of Level One, we just began to look at a demo Astrology Interpretation! Even if a few of the concepts discussed are beyond what we have covered in this basic class, people are happy to see what the interpretation looks like, and how much information we can glean from the chart! And I am excited to include more Trauma-Informed concepts and techniques – we can talk about them all we want, but seeing them put into practice is where the learning (modeling / mirror neuron imprinting) deepens.

See below for information on Level Two – starting in May 2021.

Trauma Informed Astrology mandala by Dana Wheeles

We are wrapping up this first Trauma-Informed Astrology (Fundamentals Level One) class on April 15th. It has been a great group and I am very pleased with how things have gone.

It is my intention to start Level Two around May 20th (Thursday). Or if the majority of potential students would prefer a Wednesday evening time, we can adjust as appropriate. If you are interested, let me know (and also let me know if you are unable to do Thursdays). You can email me or leave detailed comments here: https://www.traumainformedastrology.com/contact

T.I. Astrology Fundamentals Level Two:

When: Eight Weeks – Thursday evenings from 7 – 9 pm Eastern time. May 20th – July 8th.

Where: this class will continue to be virtual on Zoom. In the fall, hopefully we will all feel safe attending these classes in person!

Cost: $325 – $275 sliding scale; if you register and pay by May 5th, early bird cost: $225

To Register: please email me here – https://www.traumainformedastrology.com/contact You can pay via Venmo – kirby-moore-2 or use my website here: https://www.traumainformedastrology.com/get-started/p/fundamentals-2

I am offering two pay-what-you-can slots for this class. Please contact me if you need this option. We will discuss it further.

Topics Covered: We will continue where Level One left off, blending information about the Autonomic Nervous System and the Western Astrology Natal Chart: on the nervous system side, we will delve deeper into the Window of Tolerance, there will be time to get into the Triune Brain, we will examine the Stream of Life model, discuss Explicit / Implicit memory, explore the HPA axis and the Amygdala / Hippocampus / Cortices anxiety loop and more! On the astrology side, we will continue to expand our knowledge about the Planets and what they represent, we will discuss the Houses of the chart and what they reflect plus we will explore the Aspects between planets along with presenting another demo Interpretation, so we can see how all of these facets come together. In addition to this great material above, we will continue to learn one or two Somatic Exercises for moving toward Well-being and alignment!

Prerequisites: In order to take the Level Two class, you need to have covered the Level One material. These class recordings are available on Patreon here: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology And at $35 / month, this is quite a deal. You can subscribe for just a month or two and get the entire Level One class plus bonus material!

I will expect everyone attending this class to have watched all the Level One recordings prior to May 20th.

If you did not participate in Level One with us already, then I will also want to chat with you briefly to discuss how much support you have access to in your life. It’s important for all of us to be in a relatively grounded and resourced place to create a safe container for class.

Please let me know if you have questions about this class! I look forward to hearing from you!

Thank you for your interest!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

About joining Astrology class, Level Two

This material is copyrighted by me (Kirby Moore).  Reproduction without permission is prohibited.  To support my business and blogging efforts, please visit Kirby’s website. More recently, I have begun teaching Astrology classes on Trauma-Informed Astrology, see http://www.traumainformedastrology.com for more! Thank you for visiting!

Hello Dear Readers!

I am checking in to see if anyone would be interested in joining my upcoming Trauma Informed Astrology Fundamentals Level Two class. If this might be you, continue reading and contact me (or leave a comment here on the blog).

Level One is going really well. We are nearly half way done with this first level. We are getting into some awesome material as well – Polyvagal Theory, different states of the nervous system, traumatology (symptoms & patterns), Somatic exercises and of course, how all of this shows up in the Western Astrology chart!

We have a smaller group though (6 participants and 2 assistants). Therefore, if only a few of them are interested in continuing on, I would like to add two or three people to make certain we have a decent group for most classes in the next series.

I am thinking of teaching Level Two starting in mid-May. We would do Thursday evenings (Eastern Time) again and they would be virtual classes. These will also be recorded. I think we would start on May 20th. I would ask $275-$325 for this class with an early-bird discount (early bird rate of $250 paid by April 24th).

I am currently uploading my Level One classes to my Patreon channel here: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true

To view these class recordings, it is only $35 / month to subscribe and I will send the handouts and class notes also! That is 45 pages of notes on the autonomic nervous system and Western Astrology basics!

The reason I mention this offer is because to join level Two, I want people to have watched all 8 classes from Level One before arriving in Level Two. And I want to have a brief chat with them – just to make certain there is some stability in the nervous system and there is access to resources and support.

So if this interests you, please let me know! You can email me at “kirby[at]mkirbymoore[dot]com”, you can leave a comment here on the blog for me, or go to www.traumainformedastrology.com and fill out the contact info there.

Thank you for reading! May we all be healthy and safe in 2021!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

T. I. Astrology Class now on Patreon

Hello Friends,

My Trauma Informed Astrology class is going quite well. We have a small group which allows for great sharing, insightful questions and dynamic discussions. And I am recording the classes and putting them up on my Patreon channel.

Check it out! https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true When you subscribe ($35 / month) I will also send you the 45 pages of notes and handouts!

Let me know if you have any questions!

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen

Awesome Questions from T.I. Astrology class!

Hello Dear Readers,

The Trauma Informed Astrology class I am leading is going very well! I am excited about the discussions we are having plus the insightful questions which are coming up.

Here are some example questions we are discussing:

“Why is it that one day, this event happens, and I barely react to it, but the very next day, the exact same event occurs and I have a huge reaction?”

And more (see below):

“Please discuss Fawning strategies and how that might show up in the Astrology chart?” Fawning strategies are a tactic which involves pleasing, appeasing or accommodating someone else’s needs, in order to keep the peace. “How do the Fawning strategies fit into the Polyvagal Theory?”

“Is it possible to have multiple states going on at the same time in the nervous system?”

When we discussed the Fixed Signs, the question came up: “What are the different flavors of being stuck in a rut?” In other words, how does the fixity manifest in each of the different fixed signs?

Plus we discussed the Serpent Signs and why they have more significance or more potential.

If you want to access the class recordings, subscribe to my Patreon Channel here: https://www.patreon.com/T_I_Astrology?fan_landing=true

And when you sign up, I will send you the 45 pages of class handouts and notes! What are you waiting for? Check it out today 🙂

Thank you for reading,

Kirby Moore

konchog chakchen