What is Astrology? Some people see it as fortune telling and some astrologers will try to predict a destined future, which certain religions frown upon, and this has given astrology a bad reputation. But today’s professional astrology is really an intuitive art and the metaphysical science of recognizing patterns in the stars, sun, and moon that have an effect on the energies affecting each of us, individually and collectively. Awareness of astrological patterns and how we utilize those energies in our lives can assist us in following the path laid out for us in the stars, but we always have choices about how we walk and live that path. Astrology therefore, is not fortune telling, but is a co-creative process involving the client, the planetary energies, and his/her Higher Power. The new view of consciousness and how we co-create our lives is allowing this broader view of astrology to emerge as a helpful tool to find happiness in life, instead of keeping it in back rooms associated with fortune tellers and psychics.
Astrology was the first science that was used by all peoples across the world. They looked up at the sky and learned to plant their crops and time events by the sun, the stars, and the moon. The Egyptians, the Mayans, the Persians, the Babylonians….all of these cultures used astrology to organize important life events, plan agriculture, and recognize cyclical patterns in their lives. Today, astrology has grown significantly with the advent of computer software that allows us to view planetary patterns over time very quickly. In current day western astrology, many areas of astrological research have emerged including studying the planetary patterns for evolution of the soul (Evolutionary Astrology), for financial markets (Financial Astrology), for political study (Mundane Astrology), for medical reasons (Medical Astrology), and for personal psychology and growth (Personal Astrology). Over the years, astrology has been refined and expanded by various cultures, but in personal astrology, they all have one thing in common; personal astrology seeks to help individuals become more self aware in order to empower themselves.
At the heart of all astrology is the natal chart, whether it’s constructed for an individual or a business, or a country. The natal chart is a map of the planetary patterns at the exact time of a baby’s birth or the moment a company is officially formed or a country’s date of inception. It is the basis for most astrological work with clients. In personal astrology, which we will discuss here, a birth chart, or natal chart, holds enormous information about your personality, your emotional state, your family and friends, your strengths and weaknesses or challenges in life, and suggests the overall potential for what your life could be given your awareness of all these things about yourself. A professional astrologer will help you find this awareness about yourself and will help you develop your gifts and meet challenges armed with guidance and options to make the most of change and growth periods in life.
Here is an example natal chart:
There are twelve houses in the chart (each of the pie slices) which represent different areas of your life and the symbols are the planets and the sign they were in at the time of your birth. The planets aspects (or angles to each other represented by the lines in the center) give us more information about assistive energies in your life, opportunities, or growth related times in your life. We can then take the birth chart and overlay other people’s birth charts to look at compatibility or we can overlay the current planetary transits and see what they are hitting off in your birth chart. This is how we tell what phase of life you are in now and what is possibly coming up for you. But you are part of this co-creative process and intentions, beliefs, prayers, other people, actions, etc. all share a part in the outcomes that develop from the planetary energies. You can work with the planetary energies and reap the benefits, or you can ignore them and remain unconscious about what is going on in the heavens and what opportunities or challenges are coming up for you. If there is an opportunity coming and you are aware of it, you can take the appropriate actions to see it come to fruition. If challenges are ahead, you can plan and possible mitigate the difficulty associated with it. All challenges should be viewed as opportunities for growth and a proficient astrologer will give you positive information about how you can use this challenge for growth and awareness and help you to see that is probably temporary and has an overall purpose in your life.
This example shows the natal chart above in the center with the transiting planets (in the heavens now) in the outer ring. Transiting planets in aspect (relationship) to the natal chart is how an astrologer can see what is happening in your life at any given moment in time:
As we notice what birth planets are being “hit” by transiting planets, we can determine what is coming up for an individual and how best to deal with these events. Some people are afraid to view these upcoming events because they view life as “happening to them” rather than realizing that they are co-creating life all the time through their own thoughts and beliefs about themselves and the world. Astrology helps bring this awareness about our lives so we can create the life we want with the help of our Higher Power. Astrology is not to be feared or shunned when practiced in a professional, responsible and positive way. It’s a powerful tool for self awareness that helps us to understand the seasons or cycles of life and helps us to fulfill our potentials.