|Your birth chart, or horoscope, is usually shown in the form of a wheel, symbolising the cycles periodically undergone by all living things on this planet. The symbols ("glyphs") displayed stand for the astrological signs, planets and other
chart factors representing forces which may affect your life at any given time.
Each of these astrological factors represents a coded set of drives in your sub-conscious. Drives may be activated and brought to your awareness by circumstances in your life, presenting you with a range of choices. Of course, your choices are to a considerable extent limited and determined by your character, which is itself revealed through an understanding of the symbols that make up the chart.
The Planets and Aspects
Each planet symbolises certain sides of your character; for example, Mars stands for action and passion, Jupiter stands for fortune and higher thought and so on. Planets are located symbolically in the chart: the signs and houses filter their energies through the planets, much as a coloured lens filters the
image thrown by a stage-light, or received by a camera.
The Ruling Planet
The planet which is most strongly placed in your birth-chart is called your Ruling Planet. This is usually the ruler of the ascendant, but could be the ruler of the sign in which the Sun (sun-ruler) or Moon (moon-ruler) is placed, depending on its strength by sign, aspect and elevation. Other powerfully placed planets must also be taken into consideration, for example Saturn in Capricorn conjunct the Mid-Heaven, strongly aspected, would be a candidate for rulership, especially should the other rulers mentioned be weak.
The movement of the planets around the sphere of the zodiac enables them to interact with each other. Geometrical relationships formed in this way between planets are called aspects; these affect the energies of the planets concerned. Aspects are considered as applying when the faster planet is approaching the slower, or separating, when
the faster planet is moving away from the exact, or partile aspect with the slower one. An applying aspect is usually considered more favourable than a separating aspect.
Aspects designated as difficult are
Favourable aspects are
People often worry because they have been told that there are "negative" planets or "adverse" aspects in their charts. In reality, there are no negative planets or adverse aspects, even though some events in life can be difficult, even painful and distressing. This is part of the growth process, which sometimes involves shedding old attachments. It may be
painful to make the metamorphosis from caterpillar to butterfly, but the transformation is not one to be avoided due to fear.