Background on Astrology

We do not intend to go into the details here of Astrological interpretations as these are widely available through books and the web, rather we will concentrate on the esoteric perspective and knowledge not normally encountered in traditional sources.

The Basic Premise

The basic premise of Astrology is that the birth chart, as determined by the birthdate, birthtime and place of birth, provides insights into the character and makeup of the individual whose chart is being evaluated.
More specifically, the birth chart represents the positions of the planets with respect to the twelve constellations or signs, Aquarius, Pisces etc., and the position of the eastern horizon with respect to the constellations gives us the Ascendant and the placement of the twelve houses at the time of birth. Each planet then contributes different characteristics depending on which sign or house the planet falls in. Also the angular relationship (aspects) between the planets at the time of birth gives further information about the individual. All these different pieces of information are then combined to give us an overall picture of the incarnating personality. The sun sign is only a small, though important, part of that picture.

That Astrology has stood the test of time is, we think, a pretty good indicator of the correctness of the basic premise. Indeed, after many years working with Astrology there is no doubt in the author's mind that it represents a valid source of information about ourselves and the world.

How Astrology Works

The question that naturally arises then is how does Astrology work? How can the positions of the planets at the time of birth possibly determine the character of a person?
We believe that the answer to that has two components.
Firstly, there is a certain amount of direct influence from the nearest planets and in particular the moon. It is well known that people behave differently around full moon.
However, by far the main reason that Astrology works is because of prior arrangement. That is, the soul apart from choosing the parents, chooses the date and in most cases the time of birth so that the chart "works". In other words the natal chart represents a "blueprint" of the energies and tendencies that are being brought in by the incarnating soul.
This is done so as to provide the individual another avenue for self understanding. An opportunity to learn about one's purpose and goals for coming into this particular incarnation.

As regards the timing of events (planetary transits) in one's life, the same basic principles apply. It is not the movements of the planets that cause the events to occur but we believe that the events are timed to coincide to significant astrological transits in such a way that the Astrology 'works'.
One's guides help to 'orchestrate' such events where appropriate.
We also note that this does not imply that all aspects of one's life are controlled or predetermined.
Major lessons or experiences that the soul wishes to learn or go through are planned in consultation with one's guides before coming into incarnation.
In most cases the guides are successful in influencing circumstances in order to create these experiences, however nothing is fixed in stone. Plans can and do change along the way as the events unfold and free will plays its part.
From the author's observation, not all transits produce significant events, however if a significant event is planned it usually coincides with the appropriate transits.

The Hindu Chart versus the Western Chart

As many readers would be aware Hindu astrological charts differ from the Western chart by a rotation factor that changes slowly over time due to the precession of the equinoxes. Currently the two charts differ by a rotation angle of about 24°.
The Hindu siderial system tries to maintain the relationship of the zodiac signs with the corresponding constellations by adding a correction factor to the starting point in order to take into account the procession of the equinoxes.
The consequence of this is that a person can for example be a Libra in the Western chart but a Virgo in the Hindu sidereal chart.
The question that naturally arises then is which chart is correct, and how can these be reconciled with the fact that from the accumulated experience of many Astrologers both charts seem to work.

From the above explanation of how Astrology works we can see a way out of this dilemma.
The answer is that both charts work. They can both be correct precisely because it is not the planets themselves that determine a person's characteristics but rather the birth date and time are chosen by the soul so that the chart gives meaningful information to the person whose chart is being read.
So if it is determined prior to birth that an individual is likely to have a particular chart done, by virtue of being born in a particular country, taking into account their probable life path, etc, then the birth date and time will be chosen in such a way as to make it meaningful for that type of chart.