Questions & Answers
Shakti, you’ve had a very unique career combing jewelry making and astrology. How did your career unfold, leading up to the writing of this book?
When I was 28 years old I had just finished my art studies and started running my own jewelry gallery in Cologne, called 'Phoenix.' It was quite a success right from the beginning. I started with a tiny 200-square-foot store and had a little workshop set up with my bench right in the window. People would stop by the window and watch me work. In the beginning being on display was a little unsettling, but I soon got used to it. The shop had jewelry cases in the front window to show my work. There was a little sink in the corner for cleaning jewelry, a big safe, a leather sofa, and some storage space for tools and materials It was a sweet little place, just right for a young artist starting out. Over the next two years I got so busy with work that I had to expand into a much bigger facility next door, with a large exhibition room with a big display window, and four other rooms for workshops, an office, and space to counsel clients. Soon I had five employees.
I began giving astrological readings in order to design highly individualized pieces that I called Jewelry for the Soul. It was a lot of fun. People came for readings from all over Germany and I became known for my unusual approach to jewelry making. By that time I had been an astrologer for ten years and had plenty of experience with therapeutic spiritual and emotional approaches and alternative healing. I gave workshops all over the country on using gemstones and crystals for healing and meditation, to help my students find their own inner guidance and healing. During that period I also travelled around the world—I went to India several times—seeking to expand my own spiritual knowledge.
This was a time of great joy and satisfaction as I helped my clients develop deeper insight into their life's journey, and to find their healing gemstones and a new way of relating to their jewelry. One day I got a call from an editor at a German spiritual publishing company. He had heard about my work and asked if I would be interested in writing an astrology book including healing with gemstones and jewelry design. Wow! That was exciting. Of course I wanted to do it, but at that time I was so busy with running the gallery, teaching, and everything else I was doing, I just never found the time for it. I didn’t realize at the time how unusual it was to be called like that by a publisher and invited to write a book. So I felt honored but nothing came of it at that time. But the seed was planted and the book wanted to be written! It took nineteen years for Jewelry and Gems for Self-Discovery to come to fruition. I'm glad I waited, because now the book has much more depth than would have been possible nineteen years ago. It enfolds thirty years of my life experience and professional experience in art design and craftsmanship, astrological counseling, and my personal spiritual evolution.
One thing I've learned over the years is to trust the natural unfolding of life with all the themes and challenges it brings. Astrology has taught me that there is a right time for everything. It has helped me to learn to move with the flow of life instead of resisting it. Everything has come together just right now, making this the perfect time for this book to be offered to the world.