Why would you book more than one astrology reading?

 
 

I sent a survey out to my newsletter subscribers last year to do some market research. When it came to personal consultations, someone asked:

“I’ve already had a chart reading from an astrologer. Why would I have my chart done more than once?”

This is a fair question from someone who is relatively new to astrology. Once you’ve already had a natal chart reading, you may think, That’s it. I’ve had that experience, and now I know what my chart says about me. Checking it off the bucket list!

Here’s what you should know: your chart is always interacting with the rest of the sky. These interactions between celestial bodies in real time and sensitive points in your natal chart are commonly referred to in astrology as transits. But transits aren’t even the only signifiers of change that we can look at. Different elements of your natal chart come to the forefront at different points in your life. There are a number of techniques that astrologers can use to explore what’s happening in your life in the present and future that might give you a better understanding of the current moment. So while you may be fine with having one astrologer’s interpretation of your natal chart for the rest of your life (are you though?), you can get multiple chart readings over the years and receive different information every time.

Let’s do a quick example of how the transits can give you different readings over time.

TL;DR? Skip to the end for a summary.

Here’s AOC’s natal chart, based on birth information from astro.com.

This is what the sky looked like at the moment she was born. This little map is never going to change, though different parts of her chart will be activated at different times in her life, and her expression of these chart placements will also evolve as she ages.

AOC with Pallas.png

She’s a Libra with Sagittarius rising and moon in Aries. She approaches the world with exuberance, a zest for learning, and a whole lot of passion for participating in her community. That independent Aries moon is conjunct asteroid Pallas Athena, goddess of just war and strategy, in conversation with her diplomatic Mercury in Libra. I would say she’s a creative strategist and a fierce opponent, and though it may be a challenge sometimes, she can balance that warrior queen side with a big dose of her all-important political charm. There’s a lot more to talk about in this chart, but that would be the start of a natal chart interpretation from me.

Now let’s say she had a consultation in March of 2018.

This is how the sky at that time was playing off of her natal chart.

AOC Transits March 2018.png

The most important transit to note for 2018 would have been her Saturn Return. She was right in the middle of this major rite of passage while she was campaigning for her seat in Congress, and of course we know she was the youngest woman ever to be elected, at 29. Her Saturn Return was all about investing in what she valued, including herself. She may have struggled with some self-doubt while she was running, but she did the hard work to maintain her confidence and win anyway, and we also know that her grassroots campaign reflected her values. That’s a brief example of what AOC’s consultation might have centered on in March 2018, because that’s how the planets were affecting her natal chart at the time.

What would we talk about if she booked another consultation now?

AOC current transits DC.png

She’s still doing her Saturn return for the next couple of years, but she’s past the hardest part now. Now, Jupiter is in her first house, amping her image and offering her opportunities, as well as a fair amount of luck. But two major events just shook up her chart: Chiron moved into her fifth house to meet her moon in Aries, and Uranus just entered her sixth house. That Chiron transit is going to be painful at first. She might encounter events that remind her of more painful parts of her childhood and/or feel the sting of battles she’s currently fighting. What she feels and how she heals will affect how she communicates publicly. This Chiron transit that plays out in her chart over the next two years will be a significant piece of her role in changing public values. I think she could play a big part in the collective healing of toxic masculinity. Meanwhile, transiting Uranus makes a trine to her natal Uranus, bringing her unusual values into her daily life. As the sixth is the house of service and she is now a public servant, she’s in an innovative period. Work will be busy, no doubt, but exciting, too, and she’s working in service of some collective Uranus-in-Taurus values: revolutionizing our attitudes to the earth, money, and resources.

None of that was happening last March! Of course, all of my consultations extend into the future (at least a year, sometimes more, depending on the length of the situation in question.) So in my 2018 consultations with clients, I made sure to briefly talk about Chiron in Aries and Uranus in Taurus, because those are big 7-8 year transits. But when we only have 60-75 minutes to dive deep into your life, I target the major events of the moment. There’s always more to talk about, so there’s always a reason to book another consultation! The only constant in life is change.

And even more reasons to book more than one reading...

There are different types of consultations for different situations. You might just want to pop back in for a mini reading to ask a few questions, or you might decide to book a solar return reading on your birthday to get another layer of information about your preoccupations, gifts, and challenges in the year ahead.

Not only can you get value out of consulting with me more than once, but getting consultations from different astrologers can give you different perspectives on your birth chart and the transits in question. Books come out in different translations from various translators, and people tend to have favorite translations, because every translator gives the same book a different flavor. It’s the same story, but the way it’s told changes. In the same way, every astrologer has their own voice when interpreting charts. The astrological symbols have basically the same meanings, but there are so many different ways to translate them into language and metaphor for you.

In fact, you could go even deeper and get readings from astrologers of different astrological schools. I’m an Evolutionary astrologer. My chart reading philosophy and technique is different from that of a traditional Hellenistic astrologer, a Medieval astrologer, a Vedic astrologer, or a psychological astrologer.

You never have to stop getting consultations! If you like astrology, there’s always more to learn.

So again, why would you book more than one astrology reading?

  • To get some perspective on what’s happening in your life (approximately every six months to one year), because different parts of your chart are activated at different times.

  • To get different types of readings for specific purposes.

  • To hear more than one astrologer’s interpretation of your natal chart.

  • To experience an astrological consultation from an astrologer of another school.

    Want to work with me?

The Void-of-Course Moon

Old_view_moon.jpg

If you have been reading my weekly horoscopes, you may have noticed that the “weekly moon” portion of the aspects usually says something like this:

VOC Moon in Leo: Jan. 22 from 8:19 – 10:21 pm

What does “VOC” stand for? It’s shorthand for void-of-course.

Explanation for astrology nerds

When I say the moon is “Void-of-course” (or VOC), I’m referring to the period after the moon has made its last major Ptolemaic aspect* in one sign and before it moves into the next sign. During this period, the moon is not making any major aspects to the sun or planets. Minor aspects or aspects to asteroids like Chiron aren’t taken into consideration.

* The Ptolemaic aspects are the conjunction, opposition, square, trine, and sextile.

This is the traditional definition of void-of-course as I understand it, recorded by Roman astrologer Firmicus Maternus and studied for 45 years by astrologer Al H. Morrison in the 20th century. Some astrologers throw in some other aspects or take asteroids into consideration, but I like to keep it simple.

The void-of-course moon is most traditionally used in horary astrology, the set of astrological techniques for divining answers to specific questions. It’s only more recently that astrologers and laypeople in the west have put it into everyday use.

Explanation for everybody

The moon is void-of-course once every two days or so, and may be VOC for only a few minutes, a few hours, or a full day.

When the moon is void-of-course, she is “resting,” but the influence is subtle. The astrological interpretation of this period is that we feel more like relaxing than being productive, thoughts are ‘fuzzier’, activities take a vague direction or need to be redone. With some similarity to a planet’s retrograde period, the VOC is a time for more inward reflection than outward action.

The most important reason for noting a VOC Moon is to plan the launch of a new project, deal, or decision around the VOC period. This is a time to avoid starting anything big and new, because it may not go anywhere, or it may need to be redone at a later date.

How to use the VOC Moon

Pay sparing attention to the VOC Moon. Schedule important beginnings for another time, and otherwise go on with business as usual. It’s too easy to spiral into a state of information overload when you start merging all kinds of astrological techniques to plan your life. Something that happens every two days or so is not a big enough influence to freak out about.

I know an entrepreneur who uses VOC moons to schedule important meetings. He won’t schedule a business meeting, especially one that will lead to an important contract, during the VOC Moon. Notice that this refers to client meetings—he might still have lunch with a friend, catch up with his assistant, or get a report from his team during a VOC period if he needs to proceed with work. Life does not have to stop altogether. However, he has noticed that client meetings during VOC moons tend not to deliver tangible results. This is one way to use astrology to plan your life without going overboard.

So if you have a big meeting with an important client to schedule, a magical working to perform, or a fresh start to make, plan a time when the moon is not marked “VOC.” Otherwise, live your life.

Image Credit: “Lunar Day" from Recreations in Astronomy by H. D. Warren D. D., 1879

Still in Shadow

black-cars-clipart.jpg

An Aries discovered this week that I’m an astrologer and wanted to know, as people usually do, what was going on with her. Mars had stationed retrograde on Monday, but things hadn’t gotten better yet. I understand where she was coming from, because this week wasn’t stellar for me either. If I didn’t know better, I could have sworn that both Mars and Mercury were still retrograde.

Astrology depends on accurate timing. A chart is a map of a moment, frozen in time. However, the cycles we track--aspects, retrogrades, lunar patterns--are moving, ever-evolving things. Most astrological patterns happen in a gradual way. Which means that while it would be nice to think that Mars retrograde frustration is all patched up instantly the moment Mars stations direct, it will take a little longer than that for you to recover. Charts are similar to photographs, frozen images, but when astrologers analyze charts we’re looking at something more akin to a video, with cycles moving forwards and backwards through time.

I don’t get into shadow periods a lot because I don’t want to make it seem like Mercury retrograde is six weeks longer than it actually is. It’s overhyped enough anyway. The shadow period is the period in which a planet moves (direct) through the degrees of the retrograde. This means that every planetary retrograde is effectively a three-part cycle. The pre-shadow period is a kind of preview of the themes that will come up. The retrograde itself is the main event. The post-shadow period is a time to integrate the lessons of the retrograde.

Think of a car slowing down from 80 miles per hour to a dead stop. That’s the pre-shadow period. The car slows gradually, not instantly. Once the planet stations retrograde, imagine for the sake of this example that the car has come to a full stop. Time to just sit, reflect and enjoy the scenery. When the planet stations direct, the car begins speeding up again. But it doesn’t go from 0 to 80 immediately. It happens gradually, over a short period of time. That’s your post-shadow period.

Your Mars car is revving up again, but you’ll have to give it a little time before it’s going full speed towards your desires. Mercury is out of shadow on September 2nd. Mars will officially be out of shadow on October 8th. In my experience, it’s the first few days after an inner planet stations direct that require your continued patience. The rest of the shadow period should be less intense. Don’t worry; your car will start moving faster!

As with everything in life, astrology has no silver bullets, and no instantaneous rewards. Astrology only allows us to see and work with continuous cycles. Expect that we will always be participating in a series of cycles, because the only constant here is change.