Radical Soul
Radical Soul
Colin Bedell on Queering the Cosmos

Colin Bedell on Queering the Cosmos

"It's incredibly vulnerable to ask questions. I think we don't necessarily name not enough. It's really brave to I love asking direct questions to people, and kind of watching their emotional muscle spasm ensue."

In this episode, I talk to the wonderful Colin Bedell whose work combines queer studies and astrology.

We talked how to "queer" astrology through the act of questioning and how astrology can, in turn, deepen your self-identity .  Colin explains how he came into his own as a queer individual through understanding his sign and his place in the universe and how he now grows in his spiritual being by queering astrology.

Learn more at queercosmos.com or follow Colin on Instagram @queercosmos.

Follow Jera on Twitter: @thejerabrown or Instagram: @thejerabrown.

Subscribe to Jera's Radical Soul Newsletter for news, profiles, and musings about modern spiritual movements that center justice, offer healing from religious trauma, and reject white and Christian supremacy.


Colin Bedell  00:00

I think it was actually sometimes harder to come out of the spiritual closet in academic spaces, then identify myself as a gay man. So I was sort of in that space of which one is going to piss people off first.

Jera Brown  00:20

Colin Bedell is a queer Gemini twin from Long Island, New York. He's a passionate student of secular personal growth systems and the universal spiritual themes explored in A Course of Miracles. Well And Good magazine listed Colin is one of the most influential people in the wellness industry, and as a 2020 innovator. Complementing his work with queer cosmos, Colin is the weekly horoscope writer for cosmopolitan.com. His best selling first book, A Little Bit of Astrology from Sterling publishers debuted in November 2018. His second book, Queer Cosmos: the Astrology of Queer Identities and Relationships, launched last November, and was ranked number one astrology book for beginners by The Daily Dot magazine. And his third book, Gemini by Sterling debuted January 2020. Listen, y'all, I'm just telling you, please listen to this to the end, if you don't listen to to the end, skip to the end, because I asked Colin to give the listeners a blessing. And his blessing sent chills down my spine, and I want you all to be blessed. So please enjoy this amazing interview with Q ueer Cosmos, along with some interruptions from my dogs. And I hope you're blessed by it.  Colin, thank you for being here.

Colin Bedell  01:39

I'm honored to be here. Thank you for having me. I can't wait to learn from you and see where our conversation takes us.

Jera Brown  01:47

Tell me what were your spiritual beginnings? Like, how did you grow up?

Colin Bedell  01:52

Good question. I would say that my spiritual beginning it's funny, because this has been coming up a lot over the last three days, this is  image that I have, but I distinctly remember being like maybe three or four years old, like definitely a toddler, and looking up into the sky and just being moved by what was above me and, and then it just really, I would say that's probably the earliest memory that I have, that connects to this fascination I've had around the sky, the cosmos, the universe, I always then wanted to be an astronaut. So I was constantly telling my parents, you know, I'm going to work for NASA dadadada, then I'm going to became an astrologer. And I was at the time living in my grandmother's house with my family. And she was a devout but incredibly progressive Roman Catholic, which I really love about her was that she appreciated its teachings. But she was the first one in several spaces to question the abuses of the authority. Why are there no women in leadership roles. So that also kind of got baked into the cake of my spirituality. And then around when I was seven or eight years old, my mother joined Alcoholics Anonymous, which she's obviously given me permission to share. And that has a deeply spiritual approach to recovery and to sobriety. So that got a part of my spirituality, because she sort of raised us with a couple of the sayings and the expressions, which are super helpful. And then in my early 20s, I found the teachings of A Course of Miracles which really, really moved to me and connected so many principles around spirituality and higher consciousness that I was really hoping for, because I think my, my learning would always stop because I didn't know that spirituality is I would argue, best expressed in relationship, right, like, relationships are the crucible of spirituality. And I couldn't find a teacher or a source material that adequately explained that quite as well as A Course in Miracles dead. And so I was 24, then, and then I was actively studying it, and I still am today. So I would say, forgive the pun. But my spirituality is really a constellation of astrology, teachings from A Course in Miracles, some Catholic mysticism and an ancestral understanding, and it would  probably those four things. So you started studying astrology more seriously in your in your 20s? Did you have teachers like what resonated with you? Oh, great question. So yes, I  certainly had like virtual teachers, right, like teachers I was learning from not necessarily learning with, but I would say that at that time, they were Maria De Simone who was an Italian American girl from Queens. And then Ophira and Tali, a duo more popularly known as the Astro Twins, who are Jewish girls from Detroit. So loved learning hats. Teachers who became mentors who became friends, which, thankfully, I think is what gave me my career. So yes,

Jera Brown  05:08

nice. So in the introduction to your book, Queer Cosmos, you talk about how you integrate astrology with queer studies. When did that start? Or when did that start to connect for you?

Colin Bedell  05:20

Because when I was reading some analysis just around not just relationships, but the lens on emotion, I didn't feel like it matched my experience or the experiences of my friends at all. And I did have to wonder, is there a queering going on here is there queerness that's not being considered. And that's really why it's funny, you know that the name of the book came from my instagram handle Queer Cosmos, and I feel like, the more time I have working on my career, the more I live into that title in terms of like, what it means to essentially queer the cosmos, one of my favorite things is to just challenge a couple of norms and truisms that astrologers may be sustain and uphold, and I just don't necessarily feel like it works. And I'm happy to say it.

Jera Brown  06:14

What does queerness mean for you? Because I feel like even that continues to evolve for me.


Yeah right? I think it's, I think it's to me, it's my favorite, most simple understanding is to just question right to queer things is to just say, okay, is this actually true? You know, is this and what, what does it even mean for it to be true? And I think just in the art of asking questions, the query, right, like, that, is where I connect to my queerness probably the most effectively, and for many reasons, right? Because it's incredibly vulnerable to ask questions. I think we don't necessarily name not enough. It's really brave to I love asking direct questions to people, and kind of watching their emotional muscle spasm ensue. And so, you know, and that's really where I kind of probably live into it the most is asking questions that people need to hear, and just letting other people know like, hey, just because ancient astrologers said it 3500 years ago, doesn't fucking mean I'm putting any weight into it. So don't get it twisted.

Jera Brown  07:20

I'm gonna grab my dogs a bone because they are going crazy.

Colin Bedell  07:23

Everybody wants to be part of this conversation, the internet gods, the dogs I love it!

Jera Brown  07:29

You know, what I really like is like to go back and talk about some of your queer journey at the same time and how they overlapped. Yeah, okay. Okay, yeah. Where did I put bones?

Colin Bedell  07:42

Where do we put bones? 

Jera Brown  07:46

I thought I was so prepared!

Colin Bedell  07:50

Yeah, no, clearly the universe wanted to disrupt us today. I love it. we're adapting. I have a lot of dogs in my family. Nothing distracts me anymore.

Jera Brown  07:59

I nicknamed this podcast Dogus Interupptus. I have an 80 pound German Shepherd Husky mix and a 180 pound Malamute. It's just a lot.

Colin Bedell  08:10

A lot of dogs interruptus. Yeah, no, that should be its subtitle. I love it! Well, no, I actually don't think ...Well, first I want to acknowledge, I don't think I've ever been asked that question. Which, again, back to the questions right like that is really illuminating. In terms of how my queer journey and my study into astrology overlapped. I think what I appreciated about astrology, and of course, saw some of its shortcomings was that it provided a template, it provided a space of vocabulary to explore personal insight that and I didn't have the language for this at the time, but didn't feel heteronormative it didn't feel embedded in ways that made me feel like because I was presuming a straight male life than I would need to be this way. You know, astrology gives, theoretically, so much space for individual and distinct self expression, because there's upwards of 1500 combinations of Natal charts. So the most sophisticated astrologers know, hey, we are studying really distinct templates of, of human beings. So let them be who they want to be. Right? So right at the time that I was learning astrology, I think I was starting to question some assumptions or expectations that were imposed on me. And obviously, I never really connected to the straight male expectations. And so I love that astrology gave me permission to kind of reject that and be more of a relatively introverted curious learner as a Gemini right? And I just appreciated that. And I am a Gemini, which is the sign of twins and a twin. So I was just like, You know what, there's more to this because I'm a Gemini twin live in this story, right? Then whatever the fuck culture and my schooling is telling me what to do. And then yeah, throughout my 20s, same thing, you know, just the more I studied astrology and the more I understood myself, I think the more enthusiastically I was able to stick my middle finger in the air to anybody who told me I needed to be anything other than what the fuck I wanted to be. And, you know, I'll tell you what, like, I was just saying this to friends at at an astrology conference, I just went to, I think it was actually sometimes harder to come out of the spiritual closet in academic spaces, then identify myself as a gay man. So I was sort of in that space of which one is going to piss people off first, you know, or make other people uncomfortable. So that also became a part of the consciousness that I have around queer spirituality and queer astrology was the fact that I received more pushback from my proximity to astrology than my queer existence.

Jera Brown  10:58

I tend to think about queerness as not accepting the status quo.

Colin Bedell  11:03

Oh, 100%. Yeah, yeah.

Jera Brown  11:06

And it strikes me that, like, within academia, the status quo is supposedly facts or science, you know. And so it's still like, spirituality in and of itself is queer in the sense that it's, I don't know, it just resonates to me that like, there's different parts of our journey that feel more uncomfortable at different times, depending on what boundaries you're pushing in society, right?

Colin Bedell  11:35

Absolutely. And then it's the I think that's so telling in so many ways, because it's, you know, in order to live a wholehearted, meaningful life. And this is the work of social workers who, frankly, I think should be in charge of everything. So, in order to live a wholehearted life, one needs a spiritual practice a spiritual dimension. This is evidence informed research based, right. And so it was just so interesting to me that in certain spaces, when I would ask questions about spirituality, which is just as essential as me asking for a glass of water, people would be like, You really believe in that? And I was just, yeah. And what how's your boring ass life working out for you so far?

Jera Brown  12:18


Colin Bedell  12:20

Yes I do John! Anyway, go ahead. First of all, what what are your spiritual practices look like now? Like, what grounds you? Oh, my gosh, great question. Because this is a perfect time for us to be talking about it. Actually, it's Virgo season as this is being recorded. It's changed, but it really got routed into my central nervous system, my emotional nervous system to with morning rituals and routines. And so what I do 100%, I know that I try not to get dogmatic about anything. But if there's one hill, I will get dogmatic on it's the value of the morning ritual in the morning routine, because it is just extraordinarily effective. So my spiritual practice primarily is I listen to some of the teachings of a work in the workbook of A Course in Miracles. I'll then meditate on it for about five minutes. So just close my eyes, five minutes of meditation. And then I absolutely love Julia Cameron's The Artist's Way. And one of the requirements that Cameron asks for it is the morning pages, which is just three pages of freehand writing. So that's takes me about 45 minutes. But what it does in total, is it just helps me orient myself in time, space, meaning context, before any environmental demand before any responsibility for any expectation before any communication to my family knows, look, let's keep the conversations at a minimum, if I haven't meditated yet, you know, I just visited my friend at an ashram that a week and a half ago. And what I loved about staying there just for one day, was that they have a silent breakfast before 10am. You can't really speak before 10am I just thought that was so cool. And yeah, so that's, that's my spiritual practice. Because when we're talking about these things, they're really metaphysical. They're really beyond logic reason. And so we have to kind of bring it from the head to the heart, and we have to root it in a central nervous system. And I think that's done experientially, I think that's done behaviorally. I think that's done ritualistically and routinely, so that's why I am deeply devoted to this practice. Because, of course, a miracle says enlightenment, right, whatever that means. So just a journey of understanding begins, like a journey without distance from the head to the heart. And so every morning I try to take that journey without distance from the head to the heart, and that's what helps me ritual and routine and meditation. Yeah.

Jera Brown  14:57

This is a switch. So I really loved that you opened your book Queer Cosmo was talking about shame. And then I loved even more that you really quickly brought it around to relationships because I feel like so often when we go about healing, it feels like such a solitary thing. And right, it just doesn't, you can only get so far. Yeah. So talk to me about the benefits of astrology work and building up authentic healing relationships.

Colin Bedell  15:33

Well, thank you for noticing, because... around shame because that was a decision that I made really early on, right? Because my concern was, well, before anybody can, you know, just experiment or study or learn about this template, we need to identify what interrupts that we need to identify the kind of constrictions that that prevent people from accessing their highest level of worthiness. So it was learning about shame through Dr. Brene Brown's work in my early 20s, that really transformed the way that I talked to myself about myself, talk to myself about other people and talk to other people about other people, you know. And so just for folks who are listening, shame is a universal emotion, everybody has it. And it's the emotion that we feel when we feel that we're fundamentally unworthy of love, joy, belonging, we're fundamentally unworthy of the sole determiner of our life quality. So you could see what's at stake. I didn't think anything else was more important than naming that in the first chapter. Right? And so with astrology, if shame makes you feel like you're unworthy, I believe astrology is a lens, not necessarily an immediate template or system. It is a lens by which I can language my worthiness. And that was the premise that I took in the book, right was that astrology helps you unlearn the dominant thought system that the world teaches us based on shame, scarcity, competitiveness, comparison unworthiness, and instead, look at you and other people through a lens of like it or not, we're all in the Zodiac circle. So let me presume that I just like everybody else, but no less than anybody else or more than anybody else am fundamentally worthy. And then lastly, connecting that to like you were saying relationships, the work of Dr. Joanna Dibella, who is a clinical psychologist at Stony Brook University, who was also my friend's doctoral advisor, which was so weird. She put forward a skill based model for relational functioning. And she argues that personal insight is the first irreducible skill for healthy relationships. The second is mutuality. But it's personal insight, our ability to know who we are, what we stand for, what our needs, what our requests, what our boundaries are, mutuality, so that my insight needs to be in equilibrium with yours, your wants and needs are held in harmony with mine. And then last emotion regulation. So the ability for me to feel hurt, but not offload hurt or turn on you when I'm having a bad day. Right. So those are the three skills that healthful relationships... Astrology can animate each one of those conversations. And so that's why I put that in my book to explain. There's a lot at stake when we don't do this work. And there's a lot of resources that helps us learn how to do it. So that's really where the inspiration came from. Yeah.

Jera Brown  18:38

I want to tell you how I... So I turned 40 Last November, and I wanted to do something special for it. So what I ended up doing and I was setting out on the road in a travel trailer right before that, with my two humongous dogs. So I was like, Oh, where do I want to turn 40? And the first thing that popped into my mind was Sedona. I know that. Yeah, you've been? Yeah, so just a thought that like it's a place that can unblock your I never know whether it's a chakras or chakras and I always get it wrong It's chakras right?

Colin Bedell  19:14

 Sure, yeah. I don't know either, actually. A word is a word if it's understood. Go ahead. Yeah I knew what you meant.

Jera Brown  19:22

So what I decided to do was turn it into a femme retreat, and a femme spiritual retreat and ask my friends to come and so that basically, we could just share in the energy together. And I had a I had a few friends come and we like we did a ritual and it was pretty magical. And one of my friends who's been on this podcast Bonnie Violet, who, otherwise she's a queer drag performer, spiritual drag performer, and queer chaplain.

Colin Bedell  19:52

I love it.

Jera Brown  19:53

Yeah. You would love her.

Colin Bedell  19:55

I already do.

Jera Brown  19:57

And he shared one of your videos while we were sitting around breakfast and I'm  like this is amazing. So there's a wonderful relationship connections that brought me to you so and hopefully you through me to other people.

Colin Bedell  20:12

Wow, wow, please thanks... remind me... Her name was Bonnie if I if I heard it correctly? Bonnie Violet Boonie Violet. Please thank Bonnie. I cannot tell you how much that means to me. Thank you.

Jera Brown  20:24

I love it. I will, she'll be thrilled. Okay, so there, there's shame that gets in the way of authentic relationships and healing. And then there's these frameworks are things that you can learn about where you fit in the universe that allows you to develop mutuality and other relationship skills.

Colin Bedell  20:48


Jera Brown  20:48

What are things that continue... Let me pause and say I think something that strikes me is that it's often queer people doing the work. And it's often queer people that have more work to do, because there's more. There's more trauma in our backgrounds, usually. So what, what's something that you've seen, like a pattern or a piece of trauma that you've seen queer folks in particular can like be liberated through working on through their charts, etc? Yeah,

Colin Bedell  21:20

a great, great, great question. I believe that it this is kind of my most general broad stroke, where queer people really struggled because of the trauma of lying to themselves and having to lie to other people for however long they were in the closet. Is the recognition of from what place? Am I able to tell my truth to other people in real time, from what place I have been lying to myself and lying to others for you know, in my, for my case, 16 years, you know, this is the first year I've been out of the closet for as long as I was on it, you know, at 33 years old, 32, 33 years old. So what I see from that lens is the trauma around denying desire, around refusing desire, and, and again, I I'm sure your audience can hear this with great nuance and you can too, saying no, when you mean yes. And and that breaks my heart honestly, because the yes the the owning of the wanting the does has as Esther Perel  as she defines desire is connection to lifeforce is connection, to vitality, to radiance, to passion to enthusiasm. And I believe that my queer clients struggle the most, there. How do I effectively tell the truth about myself to myself and other people in real time? Right, because I have been engaged in so much self deception for survival. And I think astrology starts to help other people understand the way that they interpret truth, the way that truth is subjective, the way that they communicate their truth. It's that lens, right? Like, if we speak from my chart, it basically just says that my approach would need to be incredibly grounded evidence informed and verbal and vocal, right. That's not everybody's chart, though. So when I started to hear that this is the approach that my astrology wants me to incorporate, everything started to fall into place. And so that's where I think it can be extraordinarily helpful in moving from trauma treatment to trauma recovery. And kind of, you know, putting the Douglass Braun-Harvey, he's a clinical psychologist, he thought of that lens. And what he says is that typically, when we're in trauma treatment, you can liken it to putting a broken bone, excuse me to cast on a broken bone, right. And of course, we need to do that we need to protect the healing, we need to make sure that there was an interruption. And then we need to take the cast off and move from trauma treatment to trauma recovery and kind of engage in the physical labor required to reintegrate into our life. And I really believe Astrology can hold space for both and provide skills for both as well.

Jera Brown  24:19

I love bringing in the idea of queering when I think about astrology that I think about how it's it's easy to, to find yourself in a new way that's both grounding, and, you know, encouraging or empowering, but then it's also easy to become passive in Oh, this is just me, you know, and so the constant queering is like, am I looking at this wrong, right? Like, is there? Is there a different way of interpreting this? Is that still true?

Colin Bedell  24:53

100 percent Because, you know, I don't want to lose anybody who's not like astrologically inclined here but, there are a lot of there are a lot of teachers and schools of thought in astrology that I feel, frankly, are rooted in a caste system that are rooted in domination and subjugation. And we just say it and it's so normal. And it's like, no, this is actually we're just echoing concepts and theories. This isn't law. You know, and I love speaking on that because it's, it's deeply confronting, and my chart looks for confrontation and goes right for it. But I, there is that quality of me that and call it queerness. Call a Capricorn moon, call it I'm a Long Island boy that just fucking can't stand when people talk bullshit, you know, I'm gonna speak I'm gonna say something and say, What are you even really talking about right now? And do you understand the potential harm that this concept has in your life and the lives of the people you're claiming to help? And if you step outside of this nice little fucking rarefied echo chamber of astrology, and maybe read Isabel Wilkerson's Caste, or Teaching to Transgress by Bell Hooks, you might understand that some of your concepts are in desperate need of updating. So go do that. And then come see me because I'll be right the fuck here waiting for you.

Jera Brown  26:18


Colin Bedell  26:18

Sory I got all aggressive but...

Jera Brown  26:20

no, that's great. I mean, I think I think that's the point, right? Is that like, find people who are questioning don't find people that were just telling you the answers, right?

Colin Bedell  26:29

Yeah. Find people who want to get it right. Not people who want to be right. I don't give a fuck about being right. I just want to know what process helps me get it right. You know, so that's what I'm looking for. You're absolutely right. I'm looking for the people that raise their hand and say, Have you considered the possibility hun? Okay. Are you a Scorpio or a Sagittarius, because you said November so I kept my mouth shut. But I was like, Wait, oh, yeah.

Jera Brown  26:56

I'm a Scorpio Sun Gemini moon.

Colin Bedell  27:00

Okay, so no wonder we have such great communication because Gemini moon, my Gemini sun, and yeah, you know, what I would do is I would find the Scorpio looking like this. And I'd sit next to them, and kind of whisper, you believe this bullshit, you know? So there we go. Leave it to us to kind of question. I think that's great.

Jera Brown  27:24

Yeah. So all right, I have one more question for you. And then I want to just give you time to sort of get on a soapbox. But when you're talking about being able to basically own your yes to your desires. One thing that comes to mind, especially this is this is so selfish, but I know other people are going to be able to relate to it. Like, yeah, yeah, I feel like there's certain things that we we've learned how to say yes to and we think that it is our desires, but really, it's just our comfort zone. And to me, so much of that personally relates to like, I'm attracted to certain kinds of people. I know that I have decent relationships with Tauruses. And I have great sex and horrible relationships with Libras. Everytime

Colin Bedell  28:10

Every time I still do it!  Okay.

Jera Brown  28:12

Yeah. I mean... for you what's the process of moving through the yeses that you're aware of, but that might not be healthy for you to the yeses that you're afraid of that are more healthy, you know, especially when it comes to like relationships with other people. And like who's, who's safe to say yes to, you know.

Colin Bedell  28:40

So what is the process? I want to make... this a beautiful question. I'm gonna make sure I got it. What is the process that helps me say, to safely say my Yes?

Jera Brown  28:50

I think, I think when you're talking, what came to mind was like, oh, there's a shit ton of things that we think we're saying yes to, but really, like, those are not the yeses that we're we need to get to, you know,

Colin Bedell  29:04

yeah, yeah. Right. Right. Right. Oh, God, there's so much there, I think. Okay. Yeah. I believe that because we are living in such profoundly destabilizing, uncertain times. We say yes, to perceived control. And by like, groundedness in terms of like, I'm going to control what I can. Because I have been so out of control in other places. I'm sure you would need to get on your soapbox and tell me all about this given your life experience and your work. I would love to hear it. But yeah, I think that people are just longing for that sense of control for that sense of security. And so that's why they say no, when they mean yes, because they literally cannot emotionally given their comfort zone tolerance, right or their zone of tolerance, their nervous system. They can not handle another aspect of their life that is anxiety provoking, or uncertain. And that is what breaks my heart because and your Gemini Moon will probably understand this too, you know, embedded in that decision is the presumption that relationships should be certain.

Jera Brown  30:17

Yeah, yeah.

Colin Bedell  30:18

And there is no research, no relationship, no scholar, no evidence that backs that up. So what are we literally talking about? You know? And so that's where I tried to kind of like meet people in that space and say, Okay, wait a minute, walk me through this decision? And how did you get here? What values informed it? And what convictions right? And when I have to make those decisions that's the lens that goes through. Is does this support me living into my values? And does my spiritual conviction help me navigate the complexity of the situation? And you mentioned Taurus, I'll just say this, and we are in a transit kind of defined by Taurus for the next year. So listeners can can take this away. Is that Taurus is the zodiac sign that introduces personal security, right? So a sense of regulation in a very unstable world. That's Taurus. And what I think we're learning is the only way to come moderately close to the Taurus existential kind of outcome is actively clarifying your your values living into them and having the proof that you're exactly who the fuck you say you are.

Jera Brown  31:29


Colin Bedell  31:30

And then the queer research on the on values. I think you'll love this is by Barry Johnson, he started the polarity Institute. And he argues that our values should actually be in polar opposition with each other.

Jera Brown  31:44

Hmm, wow. Okay, tell me more.

Colin Bedell  31:47

So like, for example, you know, when I, when I asked my clients, have you done a clarity of values exercise, like, like the one I just spoke to yesterday, she was like, Yes, I have adventure and freedom. And I was like, that's great. But we just got to incorporate another one. So like, for example, my values are autonomy and connection. Right? I am a twin, I'm surrounded by people. So I definitely have to protect my autonomy, because it's easy for me to get kind of get lost, and my big family and all my friends. And so, autonomy is the value of I will do this, I will go there, I will have fun. Because I want to step into my freedom, my aliveness, my radiance, whatever. But because relationships are the sole determiner of our life quality, hello, and I love my friends and my family deeply, I will sometimes have to lower and temper my autonomy value to live into the connection one. And so it's the reason why I love that this is kind of a queer reading is because how many times in queer spaces do we say both and? Right? And not only right, and like free the binary, it's so like, Fuck the binary. And so I love that because that's what helps people live into the value. So say, control is a value for folks. Right? So they say no, when they mean no. When do they surrender? When do they say yes. So we got a hold the tension of opposites and you as a Gemini, moon and me as a Gemini sun, that's as easy to us as fucking inhaling and exhaling, right? To other zodiac signs, they would struggle with that a little bit. So that's how I run some decisions past myself is, does this line up with my polarity values? Do my spiritual conviction support this? And am I willing to take this risk into the unknown? And the answer is typically, yes. Or no? Yeah. I don't know if that answers your question. I hope it does. I'm so sorry.

Jera Brown  33:40

No that's great. I love it. Tell me about your client work.

Colin Bedell  33:43

I love it. I love it. Well, I just started seeing them again, because this summer was incurably full on so I'm very glad that my books are open again. And so it's phenomenal because really what I get to do for you know, two or three hours at a time is bear witness to the way that other people author their astrology and and I was just saying this to a group, a group coaching container, but my friend Melissa Ruiz is that to me, I think it's so inspiring that the universe kind of gives us this like very loose blueprint, this agenda, this outline, and says, Okay, now go figure out how to tell this story. Like that's, that's so beautiful to me, you know. And so I love in my client work, watching, listening, learning, observing how they extend the best of what it might mean to be a Gemini moon of Scorpio, sun and Aquarius rising and I'm like, Holy shit, this is so textbook you know, it's certain things that they say. So I love it because I'm just sitting there like this and then I had to remember Oh, fuck, they just hired me to like, you know, tell them something like you did what by when? Holy shit, you know. I love it. And I think it really helps me maintain a sense of what is actually the going on, you know, and other people's world and other people's lives. But it gives me so much joy. I think most times they come to me for relational matters. That's really where I've been trained the most. And so I love like kind of teasing out relational dramas, relational dilemmas, relational patterns. I, I love, I love this work so much. And truly, sometimes it can be exhausting. If I'm not careful about how many I do a day, my fault, not theirs. But it gives me tremendous joy. And I'm really just in awe of like, this part of my career, frankly, to be able to connect with people all over the world and hear their stories and, and hold those stories and just be so moved by them. It's yeah, I could go on and on. It's it's the best.

Jera Brown  35:49

No, I love that. I mean, you know, that you're, you know, you're in alignment when the things that you do bring you joy, right. So it's wonderful to watch.

Colin Bedell  35:58

Yeah. Oh, yeah, it really, and they do and like, I just feel so honored that especially today when people want work or purpose driven work that's aligned with who they are and their values. Like, there's not a day that goes by when I'm just so not deeply grateful that this is what I get to do. I'm I'm so touched, because I would have done it anyway. And I was still doing it in my other jobs. Hey, what time are you born? You know, so I'm just glad that I have a place to put it now. And it's really, I'm so grateful. I could get emotional. I probably will. So

Jera Brown  36:33

I might make you more emotional. I have this crazy idea. And it's your... Yeah, and if you if you don't like it, we'll we'll cut it and try something else. I was trying to think of a great way to end this episode and what I'd love from you is a blessing to the listeners or for the listeners.

Colin Bedell  36:51

Okay. Yeah.

Jera Brown  36:54

Whatever that means to you.

Colin Bedell  36:55

Yeah, well, something just came up because in true Gemini moon to Gemini, Sun fashion, we're like communicating so telepathically I love it. Well, it actually goes back to Taurus, in this sense that when the North Node is in a sign, the South Node is an another sign. So the North Node for people who are like what the fuck does this mean? It's the North Star of the universe, the entire North Star of the universe is in Taurus until presumably next spring. So again, Taurus all about living into our values and finding security, which, over the last My God, four or five years we've all wanted, right? So this is where it's available. But the south node is the polar opposite, and it's in Scorpio. So the blessing really is how do we find trust in the unknown? How do we find trust in the unknown? How do we confidently engage with the unknown? So I'll just kind of close my eyes. And we'll we'll try to do this together. I'll talk to the I'll use words like universe but it's God as we understand it, right? So whatever language people use to hear these things, right, so my blessing for all the listeners is that God is they understand and the universe provides them with the courage, the audacity, the strength, and the grit, to confidently take the risks required to engage with the unknown. May they find comfort out of their comfort zone, may they meet another version of themselves as they move from the bridge between the known and the unknown. And May they take a trust fall into the arms of the universe, because 1000 Helping Hands will catch them as they fall. Amen.

Jera Brown  38:35

I got so many chills. That was amazing. Thank you so much.

Colin Bedell  38:38

Oh, thank you so much. No one's ever asked me to do that before. So thank you for give putting me in that space of like, I got something innovative for you to try. Here we go. So thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Jera Brown  38:50

Yeah, I love it.

Colin Bedell  38:51

 Can I ask you a question really fast?

Jera Brown  38:54


Colin Bedell  38:54

How do you wrestle spirituality and sexuality? I don't love the word. wrestle. How should how do you leverage or integrate?

Jera Brown  39:02

Yeah, I It's so I took I have a day job right now. I'm working for a tech company because I need money. And I took a week off this week to finish a book proposal for my memoir that I'm calling Unashamed: From Purity Culture to Fetish Provider. And so I've been wrestling a lot with like, how, you know, I mean, basically how I feel like I've always been drawn to the sexual, but there's always been so much shame around being a sexual person, you know. So, I think that I think it's a consistent wrestling of like, really, it comes back to Audrey Lorde. And like, what does it mean to live in the erotic as a place that holds your personal integrity and if I can do that, If the erotic is a way in which I like feed my integrity, then like things are going well. But even when it's not even when I feel like I'm, like, quote unquote failing in some way, it's always just a lens through which, like, I see where the wounds still lives, you know. So then there's just that consistent path of self healing of forgiveness that the wound is not me, you know, but it's so hard.

Colin Bedell  40:31

It really is. So you lean on uses of the erotic I imagine all the time.

Jera Brown  40:36

I do. I mean, it's it's sort of like, I mean, I think as a Scorpio, I have such, I... oh what do you call it where you're like, I can't think of the word. I constantly ask more of myself, you know, that I'm capable of giving. And, yeah,

Colin Bedell  40:58


Jera Brown  40:58

Yeah. So like, I feel like my sense of integrity is never something that I live up to. But, you know, and that's probably my personal journey is like giving myself more grace and more grace, you know? Yeah.

Colin Bedell  41:12

I have a book recommendation for you on that topic.

Jera Brown  41:15

Sure. Yeah.

Colin Bedell  41:16

So it's called The Rise by Dr. Sarah Lewis. And it's all about creativity, mastery, and the Gift of Failure.

Jera Brown  41:26

Oh. Nice,

Colin Bedell  41:27

It's so good. So basically, what it puts forward is that mastery is the mindset that you just described, which it's all these standards that I just man, they're hard to reach. Right. And so that's what Dr. Lewis positions as mastery, right? A success driven mindset as I commit to finishing this book by this day and doing it great. But the mastery mindset is very different. And she covers phenomenal historical figures that express and embody that actually queer Michelangelo being one of them. And apparently, he said, Dear God, grant me the divine dissatisfaction of a goal forever out of reach. Right, so it's the ever onward almost it's Oh, I just missed it. Oh, it could have been, that's a mastery mindset. And it's really it's very Capricorn, you might have Mars in Capricorn or Jupiter in Capricorn, you might have Capricorn somewhere. But to me when I read it, I'm like, Well, if this is not the Capricorn Bible, I don't know what it is. And so yeah, it could be really helpful for you. And she, of course, she argues, to give yourself grace. And you know, how to kind of hold as she gives these incredible artistic examples, as well of... in certain indigenous spaces, they would when they would sculpt, they would make sure that each one had a crack. And they would call it the spirit line. And they would fill it with gold because we are so imperfect.

Jera Brown  42:51

That's beautiful.

Colin Bedell  42:52

Yeah. Like there's just all these all these symbols of these conversations, or these types of topics that you just said in that book, relatively brief read. And Dr. Lewis is a beautiful Leo Black Queen, who teaches at Harvard, so I'm like, love to see it. Go Dr. Louis okay. I think you'll get so much out of it. Yeah, it's phenomenal book. Let me know if it if it moves you. I'd love to hear your thoughts on it.

Jera Brown  43:19

I will. Yeah. I I'm very excited just to see I mean, you're really just at the start of your journey too you know, like, I'm so excited to see where you're, you're heading.

Colin Bedell  43:31

Yeah. Thank you. Thank you so much. Me too, right. Yeah, exactly one day at a time but thank you. That means so much to me and stay in touch. Good luck with all things we got a lot of exciting Scorpio transits coming up, especially on October 25. So circle that. Oh, yeah, solar eclipse, Scorpio solar eclipse in Scorpio. So it could give you those new beginnings that you deserve.

Jera Brown  43:54

Okay. All right. Go enjoy your family.

Colin Bedell  43:56

Thank you, see you soon! Bye honey!

Jera Brown  43:58


Radical Soul
Radical Soul
Formerly Left-Handed Journeys. Interviews with radical souls about their spiritual journeys, especially centering the stories of queer folks and sex workers.
This podcast is part of the larger Radical Soul brand which centers justice, strives to help others heal from religious trauma, and rejects white and Christian supremacy.
Want to be featured? Email jera@jerabrown.com.