Star Survey: Jaliessa Sipress
Want to learn a little more about the astrologers who teach you so much about yourself?
Welcome to Star Survey, a quick introduction to our favorite stargazers and cosmic authorities in our larger community.
What is your sun, moon, and rising?
How and when did you get into astrology? When did you start studying it formally?
Short answer? I’ve been practicing for almost seven years — a combination of learning (always learning) and seeing clients. I remember reading about astrology in Seventeen magazine as a teen, and my mom complaining about my crab ways as a child (she’s an Aries), so it’s also been on my radar since childhood. When I worked at a spa, where my co-workers indulged in my obsession with guessing people’s signs and giving unsolicited readings, around 2014 was when things got more serious.
What defines your approach to astrology — is there a particular lens or context you use?
I use my astrology sessions as mini purpose-coaching sessions. I focus heavily on the nodes and life purpose. The chart is also a portal for me to get right to the heart of a person’s energetic field, and see what they need to hear at that exact moment in time. I focus on the actionable and practical.
What other astrologer(s) do you most admire?
Barry Pearlman, Rhea Wolf, Colin Bedell, Demetra George, Chris Brennen, Kelly Surtees, Rick Levine, Sam Reynolds, Stephen Arroyo, Steven Forrest, all for different reasons.
What’s your favorite or most influential book or writer?
The two texts that are tied for changing my life are Shakti Rising by Kavitha Chinnaiyan and Quantum Healing by Deepak Chopra. I am obsessed with bending and reshaping reality and rewiring our cognition to move beyond our subconscious beliefs, and these books really sparked that particular part of my journey.
What placements in your chart have been the most impactful in your life/practice?
Definitely my south node in Aries. Learning how to finish something I start? Collaboration with other people? Pacing myself? Tough lessons!
How do you think people can best use astrology in their day-to-day lives?
I think astrology is best used as a tool for self-inquiry and self-awareness. To use your natal chart as a map home and a map to the highest version of you simultaneously. Day-to-day, I think using astrological transits as a “weather report” to help you navigate the mundane is great, but using them to understand and address whatever the current transits are highlighting in your patterning and perception is even better. I also love electional astrology (for choosing dates) and astrocartography (picking places.)
What’s one thing an astrology newbie should learn about?
I think an astrology newbie should read Astrology, Karma, and Transformation by Stephen Arroyo and become familiar with the ways astrology weaves into other facets of spiritual practice and the larger dynamics of the human psyche and social relationships (but I’m a very ~too deep, too fast~ kind of gal.)
Is your astrology more focused on the past, present, or the future?
I don’t see them as different, especially if we’re talking about subconscious beliefs, patterning, and “progress” — which is what my work is about. If you have become a product of your subconscious conditioning, your present and your future will keep reflecting your past. If you are interested in revealing and addressing your patterns, you will live in the freedom of the forever present (which holds the future and past in one hand.)
Astrology can help us access it all because astrology is the study of cycles — it gives us (the human race) similar opportunities over and over again to develop new relationships to old patterns, and then sometimes gives us more unique opportunities to address larger human social and cultural issues as a collective. What never changes is our choice to step up to the plate at any given moment and take the past, present, and future into our own hands.
Are there any planets you have strong relationships with or feel particularly drawn to?
I’m a big fan of Venus, Pluto, and Neptune. All three of them have heavy influences on my chart and life. I love the frequency of Venus; the way she always guides us back to the present moment, to our senses, pleasure, and values. I love Pluto because it shows us that where our shadows live, our greatest power does, too. Neptune is a freaky weirdo who throws a wrench in human plans and conceptions of the linear and that, to me, is maybe most important.
Is there something specific you look for when analyzing compatibility charts?
I don’t really buy into traditional notions of “compatibility,” but I think our moon signs can have a big impact on if we feel emotionally seen, safe, and held, so that’s definitely a place of interest for me when considering partnership.
Are there any activities that you personally avoid during Mercury retrogrades?
I try to avoid details and monotony on a good day, so I’m definitely steering clear during a retrograde cycle, but I almost always end up traveling and/or signing a contract during the retrogrades, which all feels very karmic to me…
Is there a transit you really look forward to (or dread?)
I love a Venus retrograde moment. Honestly, I love most anything that makes us humans freak out. I love the moments in our lives and collective present where we all have to stop what we’re doing for a second and consider how absurd this whole “living” thing is, and take more responsibility for how we’re doing it. Jupiter transits can be fun or terrifying, so that’s always a fun game, too.
Are there any interesting practices or hobbies that you’ve picked up throughout the pandemic?
Just a lot of dancing. I am also getting reiki certified and have learned a great deal about aliens.