Dispositor Trees Your Chart’s Backstory There are many techniques that you can use to read a chart and one method that I particularily enjoy is the dispositor tree. Your dispositor tree shows the back story and how the energy is flowing behind the scenes of your...
The Lunar Cycle The Sun and Moon’s synodic cycle The Moon takes one month to orbit the Earth. The Moon phase cycle starts at New Moon when the Sun and the Moon are conjunct. This happens once every month. At New Moon we can’t see the Moon when it is close to the Sun...
Every time you attempt to read a chart there are so many things to look at it can be daunting.
Here I have brought the essence of chart reading down to five features to consider. These are things you will always consider when doing any chart reading. If you practice this type of high level chart your interpretation you will get to the heart of your chart reading soon.
These five tips will sharpen your focus so you don’t go off at a tangent or wander down a chart reading back road.
1 – The Dominant Broad Stroke
The dominant broad stroke refers to the background feel for a chart shown by the quantity of plan at and their distribution throughout the char. It does not consider individual planets.
You count the visible planets only and this will always add up to seven. The seven visible planets are the Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.
The broad strokes that you count are:
The two polarities of active and passive.
The four elements of fire, earth, air and water.
The three modes of cardinal, fixed and mutable.
The four hemispheres of north, south, east and west
The four quadrants numbered first, second, third and fourth.
In all of this find the highest possible number and focus on interpreting that broad stroke.
2 – The Chart Ruler Complex
The chart ruler is the planet that rules the sign on the ascendant. If it is one of the three signs with two rulers (Scorpio, Aquarius or Capricorn) then look at both rulers.
Look closely at this planet and discover it’s message. Understand this planet by sign, house and any aspects it receives in the chart.
It is strong if it is in its own sign or in exaltation. Or in other words if it has essential dignity.
It is strong in accidental dignity which is the natural house of its sign. So for example, Mars in the eighth house is strong because Mars rules Scorpio the natural eighth sign.
Notice if it rules the hemisphere, quadrant or house it tenants.
If it has only soft aspects it is supported but if it receives only hard aspects it is afflicted. A combination of both is neutral.
See if it dominates the chart by being most elevated, oriental, the final dispositor or is it in an angular house (first, fourth, seventh or tenth). These positions add weight.
See of it forms part of a major aspect pattern and if it dominates the pattern. This placement adds weight.
Check if its motion is direct, stationary or retrograde. being direct adds weight and retrograde detracts.
3 – The Sun Complex
Understand the Sun in the chart by sign, house and any aspects it receives.
Fully explore the message of the Sun in the chart.
4 – The Tightest Aspect
To find the tightest aspect you have to consider the aspects between the planets and the orbs.
Look for aspects between the planets and not the points. The planets to consider when looking for the tightest aspect are; the Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Pluto and Chiron.
Do not consider any points like the Ascendant, the Midheaven, the lunar nodes or the part of fortune etc.
I also do not consider the asteroids unless you use them in your daily astrology practice. If not then ignore asteroids including Ceres.
Only look for the five Ptolemaic aspects which are the conjunction, sextile, square, trine and opposition.
Find the aspect with the tightest orb which should be 00 00′. See which aspect it is and understand the meaning of this aspect. look at the two planets in the aspect and how they will work together in this chart and in this aspect.
Check the house and signs that the tightest aspect lies over and understand what this means.
5 – The Prominent Major Aspect Pattern
You need the find the most dominant major aspect pattern in the chart.
Some charts may not have a major aspect pattern. And if so then skip this step. Major aspect patterns in order of importance are:
If there is more than one major aspect pattern of the same type, say you have three T-squares, then find the tightest orbed T-square, the non-disassociate T-square and the one that includes the chart ruler, the Sun or the final dispositor.
Find this major aspect pattern and fully understand the planets involved in it by sign, house and essential dignity.
Use these 5 tips to help you read a chart quickly and easily.
The Physical Chart – Printing and Highlighting Main Features
This time I going to share with you some of my process and the focus will be on the natal chart. I will answer the following questions that plague new astrologers.
Once you have the chart cast what do you look for? What is important? What is not worthy of consideration and where do you start?
The image below is of a chart for Rosie and she is one of my clients. I have not shown the chart details that is; the time, date and place as that is not important.
What we are going to be looking at is how to prepare a chart for reading after you have printed it out and before you start.
This is like step 2 of the natal chart reading process.
What to Print
In Solar Fire or your other astrology program print a chart with a half aspectarian in the corner as shown above. This is a standard chart so you should have no problem doing this.
Write the house rulers against every house cusp. Start at the ascendant and in this chart (above) I have written Jupiter/Neptune and drawn a bubble around them at the house cusp.
Quadrant and Hemispheres
Draw a circle in the top right of the page. Draw a cross in it with one horizontal line and one vertical line.
This shows the four quadrants (1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th) and the four hemispheres (north, south, east and west).
Only counting the visible planets from the Sun to Saturn count how many planets are in each quadrant.
In this chart there is one planet in the first quadrant (Saturn), two planets in the second quadrant (Jupiter and Venus), three planets in the third quadrant (the Sun, Mars and Mercury) and one planet in the fourth quadrant (the Moon).
Elements and Modes Table
Draw a table of four columns and three rows.
On the top label the columns F (fire), E (earth), A (air) and W (water). On the side label the rows C (cardinal), F (fixed) and M (mutable).
Add the number of visible planets (the Sun to Saturn) and write the quantity in the appropriate cell in the table.
Add up each row and column. The total will always be seven.
Find the chart ruler which is the planet or planets that rules the ascendant sign. In this case, it is Pisces so the ruling planets are Jupiter and Neptune. Colour in each instance of the ruling planets in yellow.
Major Aspect Patterns
Find all the major aspect patterns.
In this chart there is a stellium of the Sun, Neptune and Mars and a Moon yod of Mars, Pluto and the Moon.
Bracket the stellium and highlight in red so you can see it easily.
Colour the yod in green to relate to the quincunx colour which is green.
The idea is to bring forth the main features of a chart through the use of colour so you can easily see the main points when you pick up this chart again next month.
If you are reading many charts a week you do not have time to reread each chart to discover the main threads. they should be highlighted the first time around.
Note the most elevated planet in this case it is Mercury (although I originally noted Mars in the drawing and I can’t change the image.