If Judith Harte were throwing her dream dinner party, she would probably invite Sigmund Freud and Jeane Dixon. Harte, a psychotherapist and astrologer, is the founder of the Institute for Psychological Astrology, in Sherman Oaks, and one of a handful of psychoanalysts who believe that the fault, dear Brutus, lies in our stars and in ourselves. "By placing astrology within a psychological perspective," Harte, 50, says, "it is possible to understand the images in your birth horoscope by using dreams, myth and metaphor." One patient, a middle-aged woman, was unable to live on her own because of an inexplicable fear of abduction and rape. In her astrological chart, the moon--the symbol for mother--was very prominent. Using the myth of Persephone--in which a daughter is stolen from her mother--Harte helped the woman work through, and overcome, her fears.
An astrologer for 20 years, Harte noticed early in her career that many of her clients had "profound experiences and reactions" to the accuracy of her observations and often wanted further counseling and advice. So she earned a Ph.D in counseling psychology and in 1981 opened her astrology/psychotherapy practice. About 30% of Harte's patients combine the two services, and she also acts as a consultant to other therapists who wish to have their patients' horoscopes analyzed. "Often, I'll have someone come in just to have her horoscope done," she says, "and then that catalyzes the need for therapy."