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Astrology Basics for Beginners

Updated on March 19, 2017

Astrology is an ancient craft, the first known references date back to Babylonian texts in 1600 BC. It's place in the lives of the Babylonian folk was no different to the influence of computers in modern times. It was a natural tool used to help fathom the ins and outs, whys and wherefores of living life. In short it helped to get ones head around why stuff happens, the good, bad and ugly.

Unfortunately modern day or mainstream tabloid interpretations of Astrology has led to sweeping generalisations of interpretations. In fact I don't give credit to the magazine or tabloid interpretations at all. A major body of knowledge is missing from these snippets of information that the average muggle has no idea about, but buys into anyway. Sad but true, a true astrologer will cringe and dismiss anyone who wants to know about their star sign. "Get the big picture," they will say.

Esoteric study on the subject finds a lot of work from the Greeks. They hooked into the Babylonian knowhow and wanted to learn more and more. Homage to the great Platonists who delved and wrote and delved and wrote. Interesting that in the times of the great philosophers comes knowledge from experience more than the written word. Ancient Greek Platonists write about the influence of the psyche as being linked directly to planetary spheres.

It was common knowledge that the soul, or psyche was made of the same substance as the stars. Whilst modern day differentiates astrology and astronomy, in the ancient days they were not as separate. Yes astronomy is the study of the physical planets, asteroids and all things outer space. The ancients knew this, they also understood soul qualities as determined by the influence of planets. Accordingly, you are influenced by the soul qualities of the Sun and Moon, Venus, Mercury, Mars and the rest. In this regard astrology intermingles with astronomy.

If an astrologer has no knowledge at all of planets and stars and where constellations are in the night sky, nor interested in stargazing, then I take their knowledge as being shallow. Grave as this statement may sound, how could it not be? Astrology emanates from Astronomy. They are married.

It is fair to say however, that Astronomy is not married to Astrology. I respect the science of astronomy and all the knowledge we are uncovering is phenomenal. So if any astronomy scientific geeks get on here and want to argue, you won't get one here. Though an open mind toward ancient knowledge can't hurt. Plato was a genius and I'd pay allot of money to be in his presence for a day. Perhaps also know there is lost knowledge that science is not capable of capturing, not yet anyway. Many ancient philosophers were seers. Their knowledge was not only passed but experienced, so to disregard their vision is shortsighted in my view.

Psyche, Soul and Psychology

In some esoteric teachings the soul is called the Astral Body This term refers to thoughts and emotions and these waves of stimuli are determined by the influence of the stars - aster. Aster (your chart) = Astral Body = thoughts and emotions - your personality warts and all.

The ancient Greeks did not differentiate between the stars and planets, yet it's the planets mainly that are involved in our personality. Or at least the most prominent and traceable parts of our psyche. It would not be true to say we are not influenced by it all. A question to ask self "How well do I know myself?" The more we delve, the more we see; the more we understand about ourselves, the more we see we don't know all we are capable of. Are we as diverse and magnificent as the carpet of stars and planets above our heads? Don't limit yourself when answering that question. Our hopes and dreams are as real as the thoughtforms that created it. We're just chicken and only do a fraction of what's possible.

Speaking of thoughtforms, esotericists of the Platonist era considered that the system of planetary spheres were not just astronomical objects but astral spheres of consciousness. What is consciousness but the whole sum of what we think and feel and fathom as an individual. Our Astrological Blueprint is the sum of influence of the planets at the time of our birth. Within our blueprint is a plethora of forces that animate our lives in an attempt to be the best we can be.

Unfortunately we are limited only by our lack of consciousness. We only use 30% of our brain, that must tell you something. If we are not using what we are capable of, this makes us only half or a quarter, or a fifth of who we could be. A new born baby has in front of it a lifetime of experiences and opportunities . It is only limited by it's surroundings. Everything else is a possibility. When that child becomes limited because of the determinants of life, be that social memes, family beliefs and expectations, the wants and needs of peers at their expense, less and less is that child acting on the potential that is theirs.

Interestingly, the more lost we feel in this big crazy world, the more we seem to need a psychologist to fathom it all.   As individuals we have a hard time accessing ourselves, let alone excelling at being our true selves.

But at least to know what you have at your disposal, to know your potential is half the battle. It is then up to you to follow through on that potential. Your astrological chart will show you this. But rememeber don't limit yourself to your Sun Sign, get the big picture of yourself.

In following hubs I will go through the planetary forces which will cover the positive and negative personality traits attached to each. You can get acces to a free astrology website and have at your disposal everything you need to know about yourself. The site uses both Tropical and Sidereal (Vedic) systems so everyone is covered. Personally I use Sidereal as it aligns with astronomy and as my friends will attest - I will not budge from my standpoint. Read my hub on Astrology and Horoscopes linked below for a snippet on that topic.

Interview with the author


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    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 5 years ago from Australia

      Thank you. The esoteric knowledge on the topic is refreshing in comparison to the tabloid kind!

    • grinnin1 profile image

      grinnin1 5 years ago from st louis,mo

      Really interesting and well written hub, I'm looking forward to reading more on this. I love the historical information you give about astrology. Always wondered about what they truly thought . Great hub!

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 6 years ago from Australia

      Hi Felix, It's important from the standpoint of awareness of what influences we are working with. Personality traits are the most significant effect and to know what we are using is important. An asset is being able to use the forces instead of the forces using you.

    • Felixedet2000 profile image

      Felixedet2000 6 years ago from The Universe

      how important is astrology in our daily life?

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 7 years ago from Australia

      Thanks for dropping in herbivorehippi, glad you found it helpful.

    • theherbivorehippi profile image

      theherbivorehippi 7 years ago from Holly, MI

      Thank you for such thorough information! This is really helpful! Rated up for sure!

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 7 years ago from Australia

      Tom and Jean, thanks for dropping in.

      Jean when I first began astrology I took in the aspects moreso. I learned more about the planetary aspects and their relation to my psychological profile than any tabloid astrologer has ever done.

      I also feel that beginners should be given a larger overall picture of the craft instead of the current concentration on constellations, which also are only a small piece of a large pie known as our astral body.

    • Jean Bakula profile image

      Jean Bakula 7 years ago from New Jersey

      Hi Jewels,

      Thanks for pointing out that an explanation of a Sun Sign is only a small part of a whole horoscope. I explained that further in my hub "How To Be Your Own Astrologer." I did think writing hubs about just the Sun and Moon sign positions was a good place for beginners though. More experienced Astrologers such as ourselves sometimes forget that's where we began, and reasearch, books, classes, and hundreds of horoscopes later we have all the knowledge we have gained.

    • Tusitala Tom profile image

      Tom Ware 7 years ago from Sydney, Australia

      Hi, Jewels,

      If anyone ever tells you that the stars have no effect on them, just ask them why they put their coats on when it gets cold- the sun being our nearest star.

      We know the moon draws millions of cubic miles of water towards it as it circles earth, yet there are still people out there who think the 'heavenly bodies' have no effect on us.

      One can only feel sorry for them.

      Keep smiling


    • gjcody profile image

      gjcody 7 years ago

      Jewels ...good information. I find astrology very interesting and you certainly have brought a lot of information to the table. Thank you for sharing best to you!

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 7 years ago from Australia

      Very true. Once the little red book is torn to pieces they will either say Carl Jung was mad, or start getting with the program!

    • Chef Mac profile image

      Chef Mac 7 years ago from New York State

      All very well put. I've often wondered why the same people who give credence to Carl Jung's theories on the collective unconscious and archetypes then go on to dismiss astrology altogether. Seems to me like they're mututally supportive.

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 8 years ago from Australia

      Glad you guys dropped by. More coming soon.

    • OneStopWriteShop profile image

      OneStopWriteShop 8 years ago from Newark, Ohio

      A lot of valuable information here, thanks for sharing it. -- Katina

    • Jess Killmenow profile image

      Jess Killmenow 8 years ago from Nowheresville, Eastern United States

      Fascinating stuff. I will be rereading this a few times, too :) Thanks, Jewels

    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 8 years ago

      Most of us have a fleeting acquaintance with astrology...just enough to appease our desire to hear good news about ourselves! Thanks for this introduction to a vast and fascinating subject Jewels!

    • Frieda Babbley profile image

      Frieda Babbley 8 years ago from Saint Louis, MO

      Read this last week and came back for another read (a good thing for everyone to do, I think). Very exciting. You're so thorough. I'm itching to learn! Onto part two now.

    • anjalichugh profile image

      anjalichugh 8 years ago from New York

      Very interesting. Eagerly waiting for the next one in the series.

    • Enelle Lamb profile image

      Enelle Lamb 8 years ago from Canada's 'California'

      Very informative hub my dear =) it would be interesting to have you critique my sunsigns - be gentle with me LOL

    • Jewels profile image

      Jewels 8 years ago from Australia

      Thank you all for coming in. More to come next week.

    • Helen Cater profile image

      Helen Cater 8 years ago from UK

      Great hub look forward to reading more from you.x

    • LifesStudent profile image

      LifesStudent 8 years ago

      That's so funny Pearldiver! Even I could give an astrology reading using that system :-) Nice Hub Jewels, looking forward to more installments.

    • Pearldiver profile image

      Rob Welsh 8 years ago from Tomorrow - In Words & NZ Time.

      Nice Hub Jewels.. I like your comments on media horoscopes. I once thought that I would get mine emailed to me from a US site. It was great and told me what I did

      Very interested in following your trail. I had my charts done years ago via Vedic system and found it to be most accurate. Thanks for the opportunity to follow your works.

    • profile image

      ralwus 8 years ago

      Jewels you are so adept at this. Very interesting and informative. thanks and I will be following this.

    • Hmrjmr1 profile image

      Hmrjmr1 8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      A good start keep going