What is Astrology?
Astrology is the study of the relationship between the heavenly bodies and human experience on Earth. For thousands of years, humans have been stargazers and sought to find meaning and relationship to the planets and stars. From a spiritual perspective, a planet symbolizes an archetype, a universal principle or force that permeates the human psyche and human behavior on many levels. Patterns formed by planets in the heavens correspond to patterns of human affairs on Earth. A planet is like an inner character that lives inside your psyche as well as in the outer world.
From Earth’s perspective, every planet (including the Sun and Moon) appears to move against the backdrop of the zodiac, a circular belt of star patterns that lie along the ecliptic. The zodiac is divided into twelve equal sections or signs, each of which symbolizes a kind of costume that a planetary character likes to wear. As an example, when the Sun (symbolic of the Hero/Heroine archetype) is in Aries (an action-taking sign of courage), the part of you that is on a conscious exploration of self (Heroine) may be ready to take some risks to be more true to your own nature (Aries).
Astrologers erect your natal chart by calculating the location of a planet in a zodiac sign at the exact moment of your birth. Planetary position in the zodiac and the angular relationship between the planets at birth are symbolic descriptions of the basic archetypal patterns of your life and character.
Each planetary archetype carries both positive and problematic sides. The natal chart describes individual character strengths and challenges. As Archetypal Astrologer Richard Tarnus says, “an astrological chart provides a kind of x-ray of the soul and its movements, which cuts through the more superficial levels of the psyche to reach the archetypal foundations of one’s life and being.” http://www.gaiamind.org/AstroIntro.html
The natal birth chart describes your unique life purpose and character. The cycles of the planets (called transits) symbolically map the timing of when the planetary archetypes express their presence in your life. After your birth, planets continue to move through the zodiac, forming mathematical relationships to the natal planetary positions. These personal planetary transits to your birth chart reflect the dynamic unfolding of your life and character in terms of specific events and experiences. They support greater self-awareness of your psyche’s growth and development. The focus of this blog is your personal midlife cycles or transits.
Collective planetary transits map the current position of a planet in the zodiac and its relationship to other planets. This describes the dynamic unfolding of the archetype’s growth and expression in human experiences. Awareness of collective transits supports greater self-awareness of the collective cosmos’ growth and development. This is the focus of my quarterly lectures on the “Astrology Cycles of the Seasons.” Click on the Store to order an MP3 audio file or CD of the current lecture.