Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Astrology and Horoscopes

What is astrology?  

To the majority of people it is a bit of harmless fun.  It is a daily horoscope.  A short parapgraph in the newspaper telling you what is going to happen to you today, but written in such general terms it will cover almost anything that does eventually happen.  Or a love horoscope in a magazine telling you who you should date or even marry, based on astrological signs and horoscope compatability.

These things, however, have very little to do with astrology and everything to do with pure entertainment.  If you consult and really believe in the daily horoscopes in the newspaper then you must believe that there are only 12 types of people in the world, and that all the people in each of the horoscope signs (one twelfth of the entire world population in each) will all face very similar challenges today.  Hardly likely is it?  But as there are only 12 star signs in Western Astrology that is the inevitable conculsion.

True astrology is very, very different from this.

If you are going to do it properly you must construct a proper natal chart.  In order to do this you will need to know the exact time and place of birth of your subject.  The more accurate you can be, to the minute rather than to the hour for birth time for example, and to the minute rather than to the degree for longitude for example, the more accurately you will be able to constuct the birth chart.  In most cases you will not have enough information to be this accurate.  You may not even have the exact hour.  Even if you do not have very accurate information, the chart you create will help you produce astrological advice that is far more accurate than anything you will ever have seen in a newspaper or magazine.

You will also need some basic tools - at the very least an accurate Ephemeris for the year of birth , a Table of Houses, a Gazetteer to determine the exact latitude and longitude of the birthplace (unless your subject already knows this, which is very unlikely), a table for converting Degrees and Minutes of Longitude into Longitude Equivalent in Time.  And you will need plenty of blank birth chart forms (although you can make do with blank paper once you really know what you are doing).  You can obtain a worldwide Ephemeris for all birth years from 1900 to 2000 here (or here if you wish to pay in pounds sterling)

In order to calculate the natal chart you will first specify the time of birth in Greenwich Mean Time.  From this you will determine the local sidereal time of birth.  From there you will calculate the positions of the planets and the planetary aspects (the angles between the planets) at the time of birth.

Once you have created the natal chart in this way you need to be able to interpret it.  At first you will find you need to keep referring to books in order to do this.  For as long as that is the case you will not really be an astrologer and you will not be able to predict anything very substantial or meaningful.  You will simply be learning your skills.  Eventually, though, you will find things start to stand out for you and have meaning without the need to refer elsewhere.  As that skill develops, so you will find the art of divination also begins to develop.  This is not a scientific interpretation of the chart, but a way for your inner self to find patterns that "strike a chord" for you in this particular instance.  This is true astrological divination, a skill that is completely unrelated to anything you read in the newspapers or magazines, and one which is unique to you. Another astrologer reading the same chart will arrive at a very different conclusion.  If you and the other astrologer have studied and practised long and hard, both interpretations will be meaningful, but will have different emphases.

If this brief introduction to astrology has interested you, the next step should be to obtain some good study material which will help you develop that interest.  One good astrological primer is "Llewellyn's Complete Book of Astrology".  The link for this is suitable if you wish to pay in US dollars.  If you wish to pay in UK Pounds Sterling you can find it here.

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