Let Your Life Speak Interview: The More I Learn, The More I Find I Do Not Know
An interview with Carrie Megginson, Astrologer, Writer, Archeoarchetypologist
Sharing the words and stories of other people who are working daily to live lives of conviction so we can witness together all the different ways to show up with integrity is one of the greatest joys of this Let Your Life Speak project for me.
Integrity is a habit, just like any other behavior that you engage in repeatedly. It is not an attitude or a belief; it is a practice. I depend on surrounding myself with people who are pursuing lives of integrity in order to continue learning how to best cultivate my own integrity. I am also always on the hunt for media that also bolsters my learning. I hope this does that for you.
Talking with Carrie Megginson, Astrologer, Writer
Carrie Megginson is unashamedly many things, and the list is always growing. She is an astrologer who started self-study when she was still in single digits and eventually went on to study at the Center for Psychological Astrology in London with Liz Greene and Howard Sasportas. She is a writer. Having published a fantasy novel based in the Baba Yaga mythology, she is currently in the process of spinning out a multi-volume, meticulously researched, and gripping retelling of the story of the life of Mary Magdalene under the pen name Alexandra Smith. The first volume, The Lamp, is available for free via her website.
Carrie has been a professional chef, a grant-writer, an accomplished retail business manager, an organic farmer, and has also been known to read tarot cards, cut hair, and walk dogs. She is never done learning and doing.
Can you tell me who you are underneath all of your professional accomplishments, or perhaps as the foundation for all of them?
I am a researcher. I read, look, learn, and listen in order to develop better questions to ask of myself and others, which leads to more research... This has informed my careers: cook/chef, nanny (both dogs & people), retailer, astrologer, fund-raiser/grant-writer, archeoarchetypologist, fiction writer, farm manager, and all the other bits of things I do/have done which add up to me. What I am not, nor never will be, is a specialist. I continue not to narrow my focus, my field/s, my intentions, my interests.
What is a core belief that you carry— about people, about relationships, or about the world— that you feel really shapes your life? How did you come to believe it?
Core belief? I believe I will never know enough to be done learning and wondering. It started when I was very young, reading above my "grade level" comfortably, but constantly running into words I didn't know and couldn't grok by context. Mahogany stands out in my mind as an early hurdle. But the more I have learned, the more I have found I do not know: ancient Greek, classical Hebrew, how to read cuneiform, what on earth those quantum physicists are trying to tell us, why astrology (in the right hands) is an always valuable tool, how religions always tell their truth without ever telling the whole truth, etc.
What helps you to live this belief?
Imagination drags me around the corner of what I know well and into the ponderables and imponderables with constant irregularity. Just when I think to myself, "Well, that's Judea in the time of Christ sorted," I find myself looking into the Parthian Empire: what they believed, how they lived, what worked for them, what their art & architecture looked like and so forth. And when I think I have my seat on the topic well in hand, I am startled to find that I want to know every bit as much about the cotemporaneous Eastern Han Empire and I am off to the races again.
What gets in your way of living this belief?
Making a regular living can get in the way of all that I am intent on learning and explicating. Social pressures and expectations can be a drag on my forward momentum. As I have aged into my life and capacities, I find I am much more immune to the social pressures of regularizing myself to normative achievements. I would simply rather write the most accurate, subversive version (fictional, of course) of the life and times of Mary Magdalene than pursue a law degree or even become the general manager of any store at which I work. Though when I am chefing, I find it much the best to be The Chef, as all my research and praxis with food leaves me ill-prepared to take orders from the under-informed.
What is the joy, or satisfaction, or benefit, for you in doing the work to live into this belief?
Making the stories I tell creates joy I can hardly express. Finding an entire lost archetype (whilst I was looking for something else entirely) lit me up for most of a decade. Ask me about the Onager sometime, and I will talk without the least break or abashedness for hours upon hours.
The research I do often leads nowhere in particular, or it evades easy categorization. But every piece of the gigantic puzzle of life is still under the box lid when I dive in looking to see how what I am learning fits with what I know already. I don't ever regret having learned way too much about how artificial dyes were developed in the nineteenth century CE; or how snails became the most precious dye source and most valuable trade commodity by weight in 100 BCE— especially as that dye became the lynchpin of West-East trade when all the West wanted silk from China and China wanted very little (outside of gold & silver) from the West.
Thank you, Carrie! And thank you to all of you, my dear and wonderful readers. None of this would be possible without you. If you enjoyed this, please feel free to like (click the heart!), share, and comment! I’d love to hear your thoughts.