Astrology – the planets
The word planet comes from the Greek word planetien which means to wander. Because the planets positions change relative to those of the stars. Opposed to astronomy, astrology says that the Sun and the Moon are also planets and calls them “luminaries”.
The planet’s are celestial bodies which motions are variable, they can be retrograde (movement backwards) or prograde. In ancient times because of this they were perceived as living beings.
Retrograde movement – The influence of the planet is suspended and the planets abilities are disrupted, slowed down and its unfavorable side is imposed.
In the moment of our birth the position of the planet’s represents the static/stable part of our being, our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual structure. Although we cannot change the position of the planets at the time of our birth, they are still the carriers of the dynamic through the rest of our lives. Because they don’t change their position (in the signs and houses) but they are the initiators of life’s changes. The planet’s with their cyclical changes symbolize the movement of our inner potentials through development and growth.
There should be noted that the planet’s don’t represent immediately the person, but just the assumed image of the person, its possibilities, energy, what motivates the person and what has been offered to the individual in life.
The planet’s moving through the zodiac pass through astrological signs in which they can be powerful and dignified or weak and powerless. When they are powerful then they are in domicile, exaltation and triplicity. When they are powerless then they are divided into detriment and fall.
Domicile (the center) – A planet’s domicile is the zodiac sign over which it has rulership. There it shows its true nature, the forces of the zodiac sign and the planet cooperate accordingly because the planet is “at home”. The Moon and the Sun have only one domicile (Moon in Cancer and Sun in Leo), while other planets have two domiciles, one left and one right from the Sun. Day domiciles are at the Sun’s side, except Scorpio who’s a night domicile, and nights domicile are at the Moon’s side, except Aries who’s a day domicile. In daily rulership the planet manifests its power in a practical way, while in night rulership it gives its influence on the individuals personality. The planets give no harm to the individual if they are in domicile.
Exaltation (delight) – The forces of the sign and the planet are in agreement. Exaltation has the same values as domicile, the characteristics of the planet are expressed but the person with this position can incline to abusing this force of good energy.
Triplicity – Lesser power, the planet is in a group of three signs in which it has its domicile. The energies here cooperate, but they don’t have their staying power as in domicile or exaltation.
Detriment (exclusion) – The sign opposite of the domicile planet. The planet is found in a sign opposite of the sign in which it has its residence. Because there is no agreement with the planet and the sign in which it stays, the effect it gives is weak and difficult so it points to conflict in the individuals life.
Fall – The position and the effect is opposite of exaltation. Here the planets power is the weakest so the planet has difficulty in showing its traits.
Wanderer – The neutral state of the planet – there is no effect of the previously exposed traits. The planet is conditioned with the ruling planet in domicile of the sing.
Astrology – History
Astrology has been studied in many ancient civilizations, its first formation cannot be related to just one place. But the western astrology that we know and use today (largely horoscopic, which answers questions, predicts events, analyzes personalities) is historically based on Babylonian astrology. At the beginning the Babylonian astrology looked like any other nations astrology. It was used to look at the sky for the signs which could influence the ruler or the occurrences on earth. Then they started to observe the changes in the sky and determined the correct patterns of movement of the stars and planets which were in a correlation to the occurrences on the ground.
We can find the oldest astronomic records in the earliest Babylonian age, but the first writings about astrological signs dates from the 2nd millennium BC. The second collection of writings has studied the movements of Venus, and it was believed to be a part of an astral religion (In Mesopotamy they believed that planets and stars were connected to Gods, and that one of the goddesses was Venus or Ištar). The stars and the planets were a prediction of the Gods will and they motivated them on further studying the astrology.
Van der Waerden says that the evolution of astrology can be divided in three periods. The first period is described through the teachings of astrological signs, the second period has the knowing of the modern zodiac (12sings with 30degrees). In that second period they still don’t use natal astrology but they give great attention to the transits of Jupiter through the signs. There are no astrological houses and the zodiac is sidereal. The third period is the period of horoscopic astrology and it was used by Kaleides (late Babylonians) who observed that the planets behave in a systematic way so they made the ephemeris (the corresponding tables which show the movement of the planets).
Egypt was responsible for further development of astrology. They’re studies were directed on the stars but not the planets. The event that merged Egyptian ideas and Babylonian astrology was the victory of Persia over Egypt and the conquest of Egypt and Persia by Aleksandar the great. They were all under the same rulership so they traded ideas and knowledge which resulted in the transfer of astrological ideas into Egypt.
Babylonian Berosus is the founder of the layouts of Greek astrology. He lived about 250 years BC. His work influenced the first astrological concepts in Greece. Hi was the founder of the first astrological school on the island of Kos. The Greeks used and developed Kaleides astrology, and created their own tradition so astrology became formal and complex. Helenistic astrology is a compound of Egyptian tradition and philosophical ideas of the Greek school.
The Persians developed their own tradition on findings which they inherited from Mesopotamy and Greece. They were dethroned by the Sassanid Persians in the 227.year BC. Sassanid’s continued to develop their astrological tradition. They advanced the astrology and the system of interaction of the planets and they studied Jupiter’s and Saturn’s cycles.
The Araps destroyed almost all the literature of the Sassanid’s, including the astrological writings. They directly used Persian and Indian knowledge and they merged it with Helenistic findings. Our western astrology comes from this age.
In the Renaissance they tried to clean the astrology from the Arap influence using Ptolomey’s works as a paradigm of racional astrology.
Newton opens in 1687. the door to modern astronomy, and after the 17th century, astrology disappears. At the beginning of the 20th century it is restored, thanks to the astrologists Sepherial and Alan Leu.
Astrology – Houses and their division
Astrological houses can be divided in more than one way. The houses are divisions of the ecliptic plane (a great circle containing the Sun’s orbit as seen from the earth). The horizontal line divides the houses to North (1st – 6th) and South (7th – 12th). The North are below the horizon and they are personal, while the South are above the horizon and they are collective. North houses are directly related to individuals development while the South are with the individuals correlation to other people. When we divide the zodiac circle with another line (vertical) we get four equal parts or squares.
In the first square we form the feeling of our body (1st house) , our values (2nd house) and our mind (3rd house) beyond our universal life’s matrix. In the second square we start from family (4th house), our growth and expression (5th house) and personal abilities and work (6th house). In the third square the movement is expanded to relations with other people: the union with the partner (7th house), giving to others and merging with another being (8th house) and imagination (9th house). The fourth square expands the limits of the individual with strengthening the role in society (10th house), being part of a group of same minded people (11th house) and relations to something more important – self sacrifice (12th house).
The houses can be grouped into personal (1st – 4th house), social (5th – 8th house) and universal (9th – 12th house). In the first group life begins with birth and continues with awareness of our being, but also with the awareness of our body, mind, family and emotions. From the 5th till the 8th house the individual meets other people, he shares himself through love, sex, job and partnership. The last group is again merging, but not with other individuals but with the society as a whole.
The houses can be divided by the elements:
Fire or the houses of life:
1st house : the body
2nd house: the soul
3rd house: the spirit and the mind
These houses are also called the trinity of the spirit because fire is an all consuming element, the instinct of selfexpression. In the 1st house it is born and it shows our beginnings. In the 5th house we get stronger by recognizing the interests that give life to our existence, and in the 9th house the fire we fell becomes the universal attribute in all that’s around us.
Earth houses or the houses of values:
1st house: assets
2nd house: job
3rd house: recognition
These houses are also known as trinity of the material because the earth element is merged into the concrete forms of material existence. The 2nd house shows the thing we want to call our own, economically speaking it is the belongings we want to possess in our life. In the 6th house our abilities are compared with the abilities of others, so is our body. The last 10th house is the result of merging our capital worth and the work we give in conclusion the concrete results of our life’s labor.
Air houses or the houses of relations:
1st house: family
2nd house: close bonds, relationships
3rd house: friends
These houses are also known as trinity of relations because air is joined with the ability of seeing yourself and others from the distance. The mind from the 3rd house meets another mind and perspective of togetherness in the 7th house. In the 11th house the energy is stabilized and shared with a group of like-minded.
Water houses or the houses of endings:
1st house: the end of our physical organism
2nd house: release of the spirit, death
3rd house: the results of our life path
The trinity of the soul is the name of these houses together. Water is the element regarding to feelings, but also with the past occurrences. The 4th house shows deep inner emotions which eventually evolve and get stronger in relations with another person. From the unity of sexual experiences the 8th house we evolve into the spiritual unity with all being and the world as a whole in the 12th house.
The houses are also divided to:
1. Angular (1, 4, 7, 10) – These are the areas of initiation and action. If they are highlighted in a horoscope the person is open minded and ready for everything.
2. Succedent (2, 5, 8, 11) – In these houses the energy is stabilized. If they are highlighted in a horoscope the person is calm and looks for certainty.
3. Cadent (3, 6, 9, 12) – These are the areas of distributing and redirecting the energy. If they are highlighted in a horoscope the person has a need for cognition and awareness of what he has learned in life.
The meaning of astrological houses
Relates to Aries. It’s angular and also the house of life. Its natural ruler is Mars. It rules the identity. It shows the physical body, temperament, the way we act and the way other people perceive us. The peak of this house is also the peak of the Ascendent, or the most important point in the horoscope. If there are many planets located in this house the person is directed to itself and a bit intrusive.
Relates to Taurus. It’s succedent and also the house of values. Its natural ruler is Venus. It shows values, especially material. This is also the house of principles, so if it contains badly positioned planets it shows conflict with penury and difficulty with making money. The more planets it contains the more the person is oriented on material gains.
Relates to Gemini. It’s cadent and also the house of relations. Its natural ruler is Mercury. It shows family ties, writing, short trips, speech and the ability to express our own thoughts. More planets here show the strength of the intellect and the agility of the spirit. It also contains early education and awareness.
Relates to Cancer. It’s angular and also the house of endings. Its natural ruler is the Moon. It shows home, the start and the end of our life, inheritance. It’s the house of destiny – it contains the basis of our character. It’s a place of security and privacy of the person. If it’s emphasized by the planets it points to patriotism and asceticism.
Relates to Leo. . It’s succedent and also the house of life. Its natural ruler is the Sun. It shows love, creativity, children, fun, games, childhood and sports. Here we have artistic traits and gifts. If its emphasized by the planets it makes the person very erotic and directed to romantic relationships. Traditionally it is also called the house of luck.
Relates to Virgo. It’s cadent and also the house of values. Its natural ruler is Mercury. It shows work, health, services, submission and earnings. The Sun and Mars in this house strengthen vitality and energy while bad planets don’t generally mean poor health.
Relates to Libra. It’s angular and also the house of relations. Its natural ruler is Venus. It shows all partnerships. It contains all that we are missing, the traits of a partner that we seek in life to fulfill our own personality. It is also related to public work, so it’s generally emphasized in politicians.
Relates to Scorpio. It’s succedent and also the house of endings. Its natural ruler is Pluto. Traditionally it’s called the house of death. It shows the endings of life cycles and movements to something new over the ruins of old. It also shows the sexual character of a person and it’s tendency to occult.
Relates to Sagittarius. It’s cadent and also the house of life. Its natural ruler is Jupiter. It shows higher mind, science, ideals and philosophy. Here we can find distant travels (physical and spiritual), the church and religion but also the public opinion. It can also show glory or fame.
Relates to Capricorn. It’s angular and also the house of values. Its natural ruler is Saturn. It show the position in society which the person will achieve in life. These are the ups and downs in life, the accomplishment of all ambitions and the influence on society. The aspects of the planets in this house are very important.
Relates to Aquarius. It’s succedent and also the house of relations. Its natural ruler is Uranus. Here we have the ability to make friendships, hopes and desires in life, love we get from others but also the circumstances on which we cannot influence. This house is also called the happy house, and it’s ruler shows the place we direct our wishes.
Relates to Pisces. It’s cadent and also the house of endings. Its natural ruler is Neptune. It shows the hidden traits of a person. Here are his sorrows, secrets, disappointments, isolations but also mercy and care for others. The more planets it contains the more it gives a dose of mystery. This house shows closed spaces, hospitals, prisons and refuge.
The planetary aspects
Astrology is not only based on the position of the planets in the signs and houses, but it also contains the influence of the planets between themselves and in relations to four cardinal points in horoscope: ascendant, medium coeli, discendent, imun coeli. “Aspects” are relations between the planets and other stars, expressed in degrees. We differ stronger and weaker aspects and soft and hard. Besides that aspects can be directional, progressive or transit.
Hard aspects cause conflict between the planets. They cause problems of psychological nature or from the surrounding (depends on the signs and houses in which the aspect is located). Fighting these problems many people undergo severe life periods, but when they learn to face the problem it opens many new possibilities to the individual, now stronger as a person.
Soft aspects help the person express his inner abilities. But every aspect has two sides: hard aspect can result in great development of personality while soft aspect can become totally unused, especially when there is no balance and there are a lot of soft aspects that contribute to laziness and wasting time.
Conjunction is the strongest of all aspects. It unites two or more individual energies of the planets. Three or more planets in conjunction we call stellium.
Opposition is the strongest of the hard aspects. It brings difficulty, but it also demands dealing with the problems which contributes to development.
Trine is the stronges of the soft aspects. It combines individual strengths of the planets enabling them easy expression.
Square is a strong aspect but weaker than the opposition. Basically, the square’s energy is similar to that of a trine but it is intensified to such an extent that the energy is said to be stressful.
Sextile is a strong aspect, but weaker than the trine. It indicates ease of communication between the two elements involved, with compatibility and harmony between them, but only provides opportunity, requiring effort to gain its benefits.
If the planet is not aspected it has difficulty in expressing itself. Maybe it’s badly incorporated into the rest of the horoscope, but also its influence can be significantly boosted because other celestial bodies are not in the way. So a non-aspected planet has to be carefully explained.
If it’s non-aspected:
- The Sun – weak effect, but still selfishness is emphasized
- The Moon – out of touch with home, family, heritage and emotions
- Mercury – difficulty in expressing ones opinion
- Venus – close relations are difficult to attain, the person needs more socialization
- Mars – lack of motivation and uncontrolled energy
- Jupiter – large part of the energy is spent on the creation of living conditions
- Saturn – difficulty in determining the limits of their own abilities, there is a need for self-discipline
- Uranus –difficulty in expressing our own personality
- Neptune – difficulty in expressing imagination and spiritual aspirations, but a commitment to art and religion
- Pluto – constant inducing emotional conflicts and difficulty in managing their own energy
Small amount of aspects in a natal chart talk about a weak personality and a monotonous life. A lot of aspects tell about a dynamic, complex and interesting individual. The nature of aspects is under the influence of the sign in which the planet is situated. It is important to know which planet is stronger and influential. Every aspect affects the area which is ruled by the house or houses in which the planets is located.
The configuration of the planets
When three or more planets are interconnected with an aspect, we get a configuration that has a special meaning in a natal chart. The configurations are easy to recognize. The most common are:
1. Stellium – A Stellium is a configuration that occurs when three or more planets are in the same sign or are in the same house. This places much focus upon the affairs ruled by this house and the tendencies shown by the sign involved. Strong will power, self-awareness, and a direct stimulation to action in a particular direction of development is shown.
2. The T-Square – This type of configuration occurs when two planets oppose each other and both are squared by a third planet. All of the planets are connected and their influences. The T-square is a difficult combination of aspects as it indicates the need to overcome many obstacles, but at the same time, it produces a strong driving ambition to do so. It can be cardinal, fixed and mutable. A cardinal T-square gives dynamic and energy, fixed stability and militancy, and mutable flexibility and adaptability.
3. The Grand Cross – The Grand Cross consists of four or more planets spread at intervals of approximately 90°. This kind of combination can become a very dominant point of a natal chart. It can be cardinal, fixed and mutable. The grand cross in cardinal signs demands forcefulness, in fixed it bonds people to trouble refusing them to change, and in mutable it tries to oversee the causes of the problems.
4. The Yod – A Yod occurs when two planets in sextile (60° apart) and both form an inconjunct (a 150° angle) with a third planet. The third planet in the inconjunct represents the action point of the Yod; the midpoint between the other two planets is the reaction point. This is also referred to as the Finger of God or the Finger of Fate and is an uncommon configuration. The configuration is usually troublesome and difficult to handle during childhood but can develop into an ingenious force in later period.
5. The Grand Trine – A Grand Trine occurs when three planets are placed an equal distant apart, approximately 120° from each other. Usually the planets are in the same element so we have a Grand Trine in air, earth, fire and water. In accordance with the element and depending on which planets are involved, it can be a kind of protection. The Grand Trine is a show of many natural talents. The fire offers enthusiasm and search for new possibilities, earth practical work and experience, air intellect and a flow of ideas, while water compassion and intuition.
6. The Kite – The Kite configuration is an extension of the Grand Trine. There is a fourth planet that opposes one of the three Trine planets. Kites will always be in the same polarity, either masculine (Fire and Air) or feminine (Earth and Water).
7. The Boomerang – The Boomerang looks very much like the Kite configuration except that the opposition is connected to the apex planet of the Yod. The first planet in this case really works as a boomerang because the solution of the problem can be only achieved in the opposition, bypassing the inconjunctions.
8. Mutual influence – It’s a relationship between the two planets that are in the other one’s natural ruling house. Its harmonious and complementary and it can be interpreted in two ways: as a conjunction of the planets, and as if the planets are in their ruling sign.