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getting started with astrology

astrology introduction planets beginner

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#21 Nikki

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Posted 20 July 2016 - 08:55 PM

That's fantastic, Belle.

Thank you so very much !!!

 

 

 

 

 

Hey RF....  I'm sorry that my excitement and curiosity stomped on your thread. 

 

Blending the two Arts is fun to explore, for me anyway.

 

Thanks Again and Sorry Again...lol


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#22 RavenFlyer

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Posted 21 July 2016 - 09:24 PM

Don't worry about it Nikki. I think I will wait until the colder months to start delving into all of this.

Thanks everyone.

Please keep chatting about it all.

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#23 Stacey

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Posted 24 July 2016 - 05:58 AM

 The sort that extols things like 'you are your sun sign,' or that an aries and a gemini could never make a good romantic match, or you had better halt your entire life because, god forbid, mercury Rx has rolled around again!

 

I hear you. I am an Aries but there is barely anything of the Aries "traits" that apply to me. I have the impatience and temper and that's about it really, I'm not a leader or go-getter or outgoing etc. I began looking into my chart awhile ago out of curiosity and found all sorts of interesting things that made a lot more sense. So I do tend to hate the assumption that your personality or who you are fits neatly into the little "sun sign" box.

 

It's an interesting thought, combining the two. Never thought to but it's grabbed my curiosity so I'll keep it in mind in future.


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#24 IslandBruja

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Posted 15 September 2016 - 08:22 AM

Personally, I found Vedic astrology to be much more accurate than Western astrology (Western uses fixed placements, but the planets and stars (obviously) shift year after year and Vedic uses their ACTUAL position in the sky... So depending on what degree of your sign you're in, you could actually be a totally different sign in one system to the other (which also might help make sense of it "not feeling like you" -- for instance, in Western I'm a Cap w/ Cap Rising & Aries Moon. Not me at all. But in Vedic I'm a Cap w/ Sag Rising & Pisces Moon. VERY much like me!)

Western astrology's intentional ignoring of this fact is one big reason why "astrology" gets a bad name from scientists, because the signs in Western astrology have nothing to do with their real, observable positions.

But yes, in either system there is A LOT more going on than a Sun sign or Rising sign. I haven't done any studying in over a decade though, so if anyone is interested in Vedic (which is also the much, much older system) rather than the simplified Western system I'll have to dig around for some resources since my memory - once a wonder - is now quite pathetic :P ...just let me know if that's something you'd be interested in.

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#25 phantasmagoria

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 08:48 PM

Personally, I found Vedic astrology to be much more accurate than Western astrology (Western uses fixed placements, but the planets and stars (obviously) shift year after year and Vedic uses their ACTUAL position in the sky... So depending on what degree of your sign you're in, you could actually be a totally different sign in one system to the other (which also might help make sense of it "not feeling like you" -- for instance, in Western I'm a Cap w/ Cap Rising & Aries Moon. Not me at all. But in Vedic I'm a Cap w/ Sag Rising & Pisces Moon. VERY much like me!)
Western astrology's intentional ignoring of this fact is one big reason why "astrology" gets a bad name from scientists, because the signs in Western astrology have nothing to do with their real, observable positions.


Western astrology (Tropical) doesn't claim to be based on the fixed stars, though. In fact it actively chose to adjust in regard to the procession of the equinoxes (and there are many writers who explain it better than I can so please excuse my lack of depth here), and so it is based on the seasons. Aries remains the coming of spring, new growth, barging right in, etc. I cannot say which is more valid because I have only studied Western to any extent, but there is a valid and justified reason why this tradition uses a modified zodiac. It is basically designed to adjust for the shifting/procession. So one might say Vedic is based more on the fixed planetary bodies, and Tropical/Western on the moving bodies. Well, they all are moving, but the stars are so far away that we don't have any awareness of their shifts...

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#26 Duchess

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Posted 04 April 2018 - 08:11 PM

Bumping this thread because I’m just getting into astrology myself, and I’d love to see this topic keep going. I’m really curious if anyone else has strong opinions on the different branches, what people use, and what techniques other witches find most helpful. So, does anyone have strong opinions on Western, Vedic, psychological, evolutionary, Hellenistic, etc.?  Which branches would you suggest for beginners?


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#27 phantasmagoria

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Posted 07 November 2019 - 04:41 AM

Reviving this thread. Self-studied haphazardly for many years before enrolling in a rigorous and structured international certification program, which I have made it halfway through. Took me 2.5 years, studying half-time, and I'm certified by my school in Natal. All Western, and I've learnt all major classical and modern techniques.

 

It's really a challenge to suggest where to start, because even by limiting to, say, "Western, Classical" or "Western, Modern" there are so many branches and approaches, it's ridiculous. And, whatever branch a person should lean toward, is a personal choice. Regardless, it takes an insane amount of time and focus to become even borderline proficient. One of the major reasons for this is because it is a self-study before anything, and besides learning the foundations of the practice, chart-reading, prioritization, chart-reading, correspondences, and what I'll call "wide-sight" (which is basically expanding the internal concept from linear to spherical, adding new dimensions to the consciousness), it takes the actual process of time to experience Lived Correspondences, and one's own chart. So, we learn our chart in a natal sense, which for many (it did/is for me) brings up awareness of parts of the individual self and can be really disillusioning, and brutal. At the same time, we learn by watching what is happening at any given time, and experiencing how that manifests in our experience of our daily lives in the world (transits). We also experience transits in relation to our natal charts. You will start to feel the effects of the astrological weather. If you aren't already sensitive, astrology will make you sensitive.

 

Astrology practice will turn up your awareness experience of all of your parts, and life as it passes, to 11. As far as timeline goes, well, it takes Saturn 2.5 years to move through a sign, and about the same amount of time for Pluto to complete a transit to any planet or point in one's chart. Learning this, one sees that one has to go through these cycles, or technically parts of cycles, to develop a relationship with the timelines of each planet. After a certain point, it doesn't matter how hard you study, if not enough time has passed: Astrology is about Time and Cycles, and without living through these, it's all theory. Mercury and Venus take about a year, and Mars takes 2 to make a round. Jupiter takes 12. It's a truly humbling practice.

 

An example: the 7th class of the Natal module I completed, we were given "mystery charts." One of the charts was for a Most Heinous world figure. No one in the class even guessed that the person was Evil. The professor and TA also admitted that when they took the class, they read the chart as being for a Good Person. It was a lesson in how difficult it is to truly read a chart for its essence: we may see all sorts of little details, but are we getting the big picture? Humbling, huh?

 

That said, I am the sort of person who devours information anywhere I can get it. My advice to a newbie would be to listen to as many podcasts and videos as possible (there are many good ones, and each have their own style), and find astro writers, online or print, that resonate with you. Astrology is a language with a culture around it: expose yourself to it. I could only recommend names if someone had a specific niche interest. After a certain point, a student develops interests in certain branches, of course. What I would emphasize, though, really, if you can, is foundations, foundations, foundations. It's so easy to get caught up in the infinite details, and jump in deep without having the basics. No, Black Moon Lilith is NOT more important than Mars. One thing about astrologers, is that often there is no common ground. It is DEEPLY personal divination system. Truly, the adage "physician, heal thyself" is perfect for this art. Yet, it is also deeply scientific, and correspondences have been painstakingly deduced over our long history. Despite this, wars between astrologers over systems are common. I have been privy to many, and I'm still young. For example. as some others mentioned, Vedic and Western are totally different systems, yet both work accurately. Yet, some astrologers will argue and fight over this stuff. Don't pay attention to the war: just learn that the differences exist, and stick with what feels right for you. Pick Western or Vedic and DO NOT STRAY unless you want to make yourself insane and not get anywhere. My suggestion is, unless you are Indian or deeply steeped in Indian culture, go Western. Especially if you're of Euro descent: it makes the most sense to study a tradition closest to one's ancestral culture, unless heavily compelled to go another way (of course, historically, Euro astrology has its roots in Babylon, Arabic, etc, but that's a little besides the point here). This is where formal education comes in. Personally I chose to go the route of formal education even after many years of self-dabbling, because I knew that I was floundering without it, and I have never regretted it, not once. And I still feel like a noob, even though I know that I'm not. Learn foundations. My school uses the textbook On the Heavenly Spheres. It's a text based on the classical tradition. You won't go wrong with that, but it's not easy, especially alone.

 

Looking at resources published by reputable organizations like NCGR, ISAR, AFAN, Kepler, etc, is a really good place to start. Of course there are many AMAZING astrologers who are off the beaten path, too. Trust your intuition, and vary your diet, especially in the beginning, to find what jives with you. but once you find that, pare it down. Too much varied input will confuse the living Eris out of you.

 

So, that's advice regarding other people/teachers. Here's some that don't have to do with teachers:

 

Make studying the Moon cycle your priority. Know what moon phase and sign we're in, and if it is conjunct with any other major bodies at all times. Watch the Moon throughout the month.

 

Learn the cardinal directions and be able to read them based on where the Sun or the Moon is at any point (this becomes much more difficult if the body is at the Midheaven... I even have trouble with this still). Study the night sky in general. Don't pressure yourself too much: this is a lifetime study, and there's no way to process it all at once. Just get used to watching the stars move by day and by season.

 

Learn how to read a circle chart, and if there are bodies in your night sky, identify them, see the sign it's in, and ID any nearby fixed stars.

 

Correspondences and mythology. Planets, Signs, Houses. My advice is, use Whole Sign Houses, Equal Houses, or Porphyry, instead of Placidus, which is what astro.com automatically uses. Why? Placidus is calculated based on complicated trig that you don't know, and divides the houses in a way that becomes arbitrary without deep knowledge. Keep it simple, stupid. That said, house systems is one of those things you Don't Bring Up At Dinner. I only recommend what I am recommending here in the interest of keeping it simple. If you're learning houses and you don't understand why one planet is in the 3rd instead of the 2nd, then you shouldn't be using that system, plain and simple. Make it easiest you can on yourself.

 

Learn to read an Ephemeris. This is just as important than reading a circle chart, because you can see one or two months at a time, and see how the bodies move over time. KEY. This should be your first purchase.

 

Don't even think about asteroids until you can read a chart and make a prediction without them.

 

Sacred Geometry is your Best Friend.

 

Rulerships.

 

Elements and Modalities. KEY! You can't eyeball or head-calculate major aspects without this knowledge, and the insight into what the signs actually mean is foundational.

 

Figure out what outer planet transits you're going through, and study what they mean.

 

Once you get sick of running to astro.com, get a good computer program or app. There are a few "pro" level ones like Solar Fire. Don't bother, as a noob. You will spend way too much money, and confuse the living light out of yourself. Just get a basic chart caster that can do biwheels (to show transits on a radix, usually a natal chart), progressions, show ephemerides, and save charts, so you don't have to keep running to a website to cast. I have a Mac, and use iPhemeris, which was about $60 when I got it. Not sure about Windows machines. There are lots of apps for phone that are free and good for beginners, too.

 

Often a chart will "contradict" itself in many ways, though it's not actually a contradiction, but an interplay of many forces, and it's the astrologer's job to figure out what is actually going on. Easier said than done.

 

Caution. Astrology is a rabbit hole. And it's getting more and more popular, and a lot of people have a lot to say about it.

 

Caution when reading for others. People expect an astrologer to be able to "know" stuff, yet, are so afraid of "bad news," and if you inaccurately profess, or sugarcoat something that really needs to be said, you can really mess someone up. Like reading Tarot, people who ask your advice will take it seriously, but unlike Tarot, people understand that Astrology is not just a divination, but it is also based on science and real-life stuff they can see, so, they may take you even more seriously. Know your qualifications and/or abilities!!!!! Do not overstep them. There are so many forces at play, and astrology has limits. Astrology is also a language in and of itself, and so even if you can read a chart accurately yourself, putting the right portion of that information into layman's terms is an extreme challenge, perhaps even more difficult than reading itself.

 

Anyone who wants to know more, feel free to ask.


Edited by phantasmagoria, 12 November 2019 - 07:21 PM.

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#28 Aurelian

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Posted 13 November 2019 - 02:38 AM

Congrats on the certifications!  Which program are you studying?  You seem to have a very good working knowledge.  Well done! Astrology is a difficult subject to master, that's for sure!  :D


Edited by Aurelian, 13 November 2019 - 02:39 AM.

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#29 phantasmagoria

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Posted 13 November 2019 - 04:34 AM

Congrats on the certifications!  Which program are you studying?  You seem to have a very good working knowledge.  Well done! Astrology is a difficult subject to master, that's for sure!  :D

 

Thanks! It's the program with International Academy of Astrology, a blend of classical and modern. It's very challenging, and part of the program is learning hand-casting. I almost dropped out during that one, but I'm glad I practiced it, because being able to do the work without a computer was something that I was dead-set on learning. I have been meaning to go back to that and spruce up that skill, actually. The second half is the professional program, where we learn forecasting, timing, counseling ethics, relationship, and specialties. There are a few reasons why I did not continue straight on through without a break, but the most relevant is that I wanted the time to be able to integrate and practice what I spent all that time learning, and find more of my own stride, before jumping in again.

 

Yes indeed! As I continue learning, I admire the work that my elders/teachers have done more and more!


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#30 Belwenda

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Posted 23 November 2019 - 12:18 AM

As far as  software programs; I think the Astrograph- Time Passages products are excellent and easy to use , and the author; Henry Seltzer is talented. ( Although he uses very big words :rolleyes_witch: )


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#31 FancyShadowCat

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Posted 24 November 2019 - 10:56 PM

Wow. I for one had no idea astrology could be quite so complex and intricate! Reading this thread is making me seriously consider pursuing it a bit down the road from where I am now. And congrats phantasmagoria on knowledge well earned. And thank you for your extensive advice to new comers of astrology.
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#32 phantasmagoria

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Posted 04 December 2019 - 07:11 PM

Glad to help, FancyShadowCat! :sunny:  I encourage you to investigate!


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#33 Onyx

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Posted 05 December 2019 - 07:31 PM

I never could get into astrology because I do not know my time of birth.
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#34 phantasmagoria

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Posted Yesterday, 04:19 AM

I never could get into astrology because I do not know my time of birth.

 

A qualified practitioner could do what is called "rectification," which is basically reverse-engineering the ascendant degree with known life events, and any time of day info available. Personally, I have never attempted it, and you would definitely want to solicit someone with verifiable experience or references for something like that. You can still learn a lot from a noontime chart, but, it does make it harder, and not as fulfilling, without a rectified birth time. Yet, still better than not knowing the date, or even month! At that point, just stick with Tarot... LMAO


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