How to read a natal chart or birth chart

an astrology natal chartWouldn’t it be marvellous to be able to read the birth chart, also called the natal chart, of ourselves or anyone else who is close to us?

To be able to quickly assess a person’s characteristics, to see how their personality will affect their life pattern, and those around them. The birth chart listing the time we were born into this world in conjunction with the position of the planets, gives us mere mortals the opportunity of having this knowledge.

The Natal Chart

Everyone who enters this world is born under a birth sign depending on the calendar date, but more importantly the time of the day or night that they were born. The exact time of birth is of great importance and separates the individuals in relation to the positioning of their ruling planet.

To give the reader an understanding in the most basic terms of the importance of the birth chart.

Our universe is made up of planets which are continually moving around the Sun, and the location of the major planets is the birth sign a person is born under. Hence a person born under the sign of Virgo will have specific characteristics differing from someone born under Leo.

a birth chart for working out someones zodiac sign

The Universal Houses

Everyone at birth is represented by a house depending on the time of entry. The ecliptic is more specifically referred to as the path of a planet as it moves across our universe. The skeletal structure,
containing the houses, always remains in the same location for everyone.

Using the Western chart as an example, the far left is represented by the eastern horizon and is known as the rising ascendancy. This is the chart from the beginning and the starting point for the houses. The first house originating on the left then moving counter clockwise until we arrive at the twelfth house.

The descendant is the Western horizon and is obviously the opposite to the ascendant, with the crown of the chart representing the highest point in the ecliptic skyline. The bottom of the chart is the non – visible skyline that is below the natural horizon.

Beginning with the first house, which affects most areas of our lives, that will have an influence on our goals and aspirations. This also has a bearing on our self-image, which in turn relates to appearance. As we scroll through the various houses we find a pattern emerging with the influences that are transferred regarding the position of our ruling planet.

The Star Signs

Our birth sign is representative of the positioning of our ruling planet in relation to the zodiac and whether the sign was setting or rising. Once we have two components we can start to draw comparisons which in turn will give an overall indication of a person’s characteristics.

Every person is different and care should be taken not to rely on specific characteristics just because you know the birth sign someone was born under. A more specific assessment is obtained by knowing a person’s exact time of birth which will then give an astrologer the information to assess compatibility and character traits.

What are Retrogrades in Astrology?

two planets in close proximityRx is the symbol meaning retrograde which if looking at a planet from earth seems to be moving backward through the night sky. This process is however just an optical illusion, as it occurs as a planet like Mercury for instance looks as if it is moving backward but is caused because this planet orbits the Sun much faster than earth does.

If you find it difficult to view this phenomenon in the night sky you can get a feeling of the same experience traveling along a motorway. As you overtake a lorry or a large vehicle overtakes you there is a distinct feeling of moving backward, and this is how retrograde affects an astrology prediction or reading. However, the reading may still be left to interpretation by the individual astrologer.

The date and time of a person’s birth dictate their natal chart and the alignment of planets at this point in time forms the foundation of a character. For instance, the planet Venus in your chart indicates your values and attractions in love. The planet Mercury, in your chart, points to the mind and mental capacity.

The expression of the planet and how you experience the feeling tends to be unique to an individual and has a bearing on progress in life. There is a strong indication from some astronomers that a planet in retrograde is indicating a connection with a past life. Maybe even a connection to many past lives interwoven with our immediate ancestors.

Karma connected to Retrogrades

It can sometimes be very confusing to the layman, the differing approaches to obtain an astrological reading when both western and Vedic both work on the principle of the 12 signs of the zodiac but can be interpreted in different ways. Karma is more associated with Vedic readings and may choose to describe difficult situations as a punishment. These readings of woe and possible future disasters tend to be more connected to retrograde planet occurrences.

A qualified chart from a recognized astrologer indicates your lesson in life. Things you have already learned and other factions you are still working on. Karmic astrology should show in your chart a path to inner satisfaction and a way to peace and tranquillity, and how to learn to avoid the negative situations that we find ourselves in.

Understanding the influence of Retrogrades

The energies that are influenced on to us by the planets flow outwards giving us the feeling of pursuit and attainment. When a planet is in retrograde this tends to have a more negative effect on the way we may be feeling or how we are approaching certain situations.

The 12 signs of the zodiac represent the 4 elements of our lives and are divided into the 4 houses of Fire, Water, Air, and Earth. The star sign that we were born under will have a bearing on one of these 4 elements and any astrology reading will differ significantly depending on the positioning of a certain planet. This is why a planet that is on retrograde can have an effect on a person’s inner feelings while transgressing to a new pathway.

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