Basic Chart Interpretation – Step 2 – The Physical Chart

Basic Chart Interpretation – Step 2 – The Physical Chart

by Alison Price

This post is part of a series on basic chart interpretation and how to read a natal chart. The other steps are listed below and will be developed soon.

Step 1 – The birth chart data – time, date and place.

Step 2 – The physical chart – printing and highlighting main features.

Step 3 – Preparing for the interpretation – margin notes

Step 4 – Your interpretation – detailed notes


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.

House Rulers

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.

Chart Ruler

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.

Most Elevated

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.

Oriental Planet

Note the oriental planet in this case it is Venus.

Lunar Phase

Note the lunar phase in this chart for Rosie it is a gibbous Moon phase.

Essential Dignity

Find the essential dignity of the planets and write the score on the left of the aspectarian. the aspectarian is the triangle-shaped grid at the bottom left of the chart.

In this chart we note that Mars gets a score of -5 for being in Libra and Venus of -4 for being in fall in Virgo.

Mutual Receptions

Note all mutual receptions in the chart. Interestingly enough in Rosie’s chart there are two mutual reception pairs, Mercury and Venus are the first pair and the Moon and Jupiter are the second.

On the back of the natal chart page you will also draw the dispositor tree using these handy mutual receptions as your start.

Alison


Watch the video about highlighting a birth chart as part of your chart preparation process.

Note that it refers to another birth chart but show sthe process that you will use for every chart you cast.

 


 

Mutual Reception

Mutual Reception

Mutual Reception

Two planets may be in mutual reception when each planet is in the other planet’s sign.

 

Example: The Sun in Cancer and the Moon in Leo are in mutual reception because the Sun rules the sign of Leo and the Moon rules the sign of Cancer.

 

Technically planets in mutual reception need a Ptolemaic aspect joining them to be considered in mutual reception, but this strict rule can we waived now and then I believe.

A planet in its own sign cannot be in mutual reception with another planet.

Mutual Reception by Sign

When mutual reception by sign occurs, and each planet is in the other planet’s sign, it’s like the two planets have entered the party but it is crowded.

Only at the “aspect” have they found each other in the melee.

Then when it’s a Ptolemaic aspect they fall in love in the Moonlight.

Sigh…

 


Relationships Bonds

When two planets are in mutual reception it creates a bond between them that cannot immediately be seen as with an aspect.

Mutual reception is like a back-channel of energy that flows but you can only see it when you take a closer look.

Like when someone is chatting behind your back to another person and they have an allegiance to them and you don’t realise they are related, like cousins, and that is the connection.

 


Mutual Reception Pairs

Aries

  • Sun in Aries and Mars in Leo
  • Moon in Aries and Mars in Cancer
  • Mercury in Aries and Mars in Gemini
  • Venus in Aries and Mars in Taurus
  • Jupiter in Aries and Mars in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Aries and Mars in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Aries and Mars in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Aries and Mars in Pisces
  • Pluto in Aries and Mars in Scorpio

Taurus

  • Moon in Taurus and Venus in Cancer
  • Mercury in Taurus and Venus in Gemini
  • Mars in Taurus and Venus in Aries
  • Jupiter in Taurus and Venus in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Taurus and Venus in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Taurus and Venus in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Taurus and Venus in Pisces
  • Pluto in Taurus and Venus in Scorpio

Gemini

  • Sun in Gemini and Mercury in Leo
  • Moon in Gemini and Mercury in Cancer
  • Venus in Gemini and Mercury in Taurus
  • Mars in Gemini and Mercury in Aries
  • Jupiter in Gemini and Mercury in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Gemini and Mercury in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Gemini and Mercury in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Gemini and Mercury in Pisces
  • Pluto in Gemini and Mercury in Scorpio

Cancer

  • The Sun in Cancer and the Moon in Leo
  • Mercury in Cancer and the Moon in Gemini or Virgo
  • Venus in Cancer and the Moon in Taurus or Libra
  • Mars in Cancer and the Moon in Aries or Scorpio
  • Jupiter in Cancer and the Moon in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Cancer and the Moon in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Cancer and the Moon in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Cancer and the Moon in Pisces

Leo

  • The Moon in Leo and the Sun in Cancer
  • Mercury in Leo and the Sun in Virgo
  • Venus in Leo and the Sun in Libra
  • Mars in Leo and the Sun in Aries or Scorpio
  • Jupiter in Leo and the Sun in Sagittarius
  • Saturn in Leo and the Sun in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Leo and the Sun in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Leo and the Sun in Pisces
  • Pluto in Leo and the Sun in Scorpio

Virgo

  • The Sun in Virgo and Mercury in Leo
  • The Moon in Virgo and Mercury in Cancer
  • Venus in Virgo and Mercury in Libra
  • Mars in Virgo and Mercury in Scorpio
  • Jupiter in Virgo and Mercury in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Virgo and Mercury in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Virgo and mercury in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Virgo and Mercury in Pisces
  • Pluto in Virgo and Mercury in Scorpio

 


 




 


Libra

  • The Sun in Libra and Venus in Leo
  • The Moon in Libra and Venus in Cancer
  • Mercury in Libra and Venus in Virgo
  • Mars in Libra and Venus in Taurus or Scorpio
  • Jupiter in Libra and Venus in Sagittarius or Pisces
  • Saturn in Libra and Venus in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Libra and Venus in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Libra and Venus in Pisces
  • Pluto in Libra and Venus in Scorpio

Scorpio

  • The Sun in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Leo
  • The Moon in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Cancer
  • Mercury in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Gemini or Virgo
  • Venus in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Taurus or Libra
  • Jupiter in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Sagittarius and Pisces
  • Saturn in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Scorpio and Mars or Pluto in Pisces

Sagittarius

  • The Sun in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Leo
  • The Moon in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Cancer
  • Mercury in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Gemini or Virgo
  • Venus in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Taurus or Libra
  • Mars in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Aries or Scorpio
  • Saturn in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Capricorn or Aquarius
  • Uranus in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Aquarius
  • Neptune in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Pisces
  • Pluto in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Scorpio

     

    Capricorn

    • The Sun in Capricorn and Saturn in Leo
    • The Moon in Capricorn and Saturn in Cancer
    • Mercury in Capricorn and Saturn in Gemini or Virgo
    • Venus in Capricorn and Saturn in Taurus or Libra
    • Mars in Capricorn and Saturn in Aries or Scorpio
    • Jupiter in Capricorn and Saturn in Sagittarius or Pisces
    • Uranus in Capricorn and Saturn in Aquarius
    • Neptune in Capricorn and Saturn in Pisces
    • Pluto in Capricorn and Saturn in Scorpio

    Aquarius

    • The Sun in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Leo
    • The Moon in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Cancer
    • Mercury in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Gemini or Virgo
    • Venus in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Taurus or Libra
    • Mars in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Aries or Scorpio
    • Jupiter in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Sagittarius or Pisces
    • Saturn in Aquarius and Uranus in Capricorn
    • Neptune in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Pisces
    • Pluto in Aquarius and Saturn or Uranus in Scorpio

    Pisces

    • The Sun in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Leo
    • The Moon in Pisces and jupiter or Neptune in Cancer
    • Mercury in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Gemini or Virgo
    • Venus in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Gemini or Virgo
    • Mars in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Aries or Scorpio
    • Saturn in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Capricorn or Aquarius
    • Uranus in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Aquarius
    • Pluto in Pisces and Jupiter or Neptune in Scorpio

     

    Conclusion

    And that’s the lot. It is quite a comprehensive list and one chart may or may not have any mutual receptions.

    You may decide to only use the traditional planets from the Sun to Saturn and this would be the case for creating a dispositor tree.

    Starzclass

    Aspiring Astrologer Activity: Mutual Reception

    In your astrology journal and using a chart with a mutual reception, please do the following:

    • State the two planets in each other’s sign.
    • Decide if there is a Ptolemaic aspect between them or not.

    Extend Yourself

    • Interpret the mutual reception pair by considering the planets, signs, houses, house rulers, aspect (or not) and possible energy that can be brought forwards as they are in cahoots with each other (100 words).

    Mars in Gemini – The Juggler

    by Alison Price

    Mars

    The red planet is known for its energy, effort being expended and activity.

    This is the planet that gets you off the couch as something inspires you take action. It is all about overcoming inertia and any sluggish behaviour that may have been plaguing you recently.

    Martial energy will push forward through the meaning of the sign and there is always a shift in momentum when Mars changes sign.





    Gemini the Twins

    Gemini is the sign for multi-tasking and Mars in Mercury’s active sign helps you keep all the balls you are juggling in the air. The more balls you have the higher you have to throw them. Yeah…

    You may not get much finalized at this time but there will be lots of activity and brainstorming.

    Get you thinking cap on and forge ahead, carving out your ideas for world domination.

    We want to see you win.

    Mars in Gemini

    Gemini is not the easiest placement for Mars. It can work for you and it depends on what you are trying to do.

    Mars is all about activity and having the energy to expend. The knack is to make an effort where it matters.

    It is best to work with the cosmic energy and not against it.

    What will you juggle this time?




    The Astrologer Asteroids

    Guest post by Tanja Flanjak

    The Astrologer Asteroids

    Asteroids are still not as widely incorporated into astrological studies as they should be. Like planets, they are more than just solidified gases streaming throughout the universe.

    They contain their own magic and energies that offers a plethora of insight and information into a person and their journey here on earth.

    If you are familiar with asteroids than the usual Juno, Vesta, Chiron, and Ceres, just to name a few, will be the most commonly used. However, did you know that there are quite a few asteroids that are directly connected to the study of Astrology?

    The ones listed below are known as the “Astrology” asteroids. Depending on their placement in your natal chart, they can indicate a love of Astrology, and or a career as an Astrologer.

    Stargazer 8958

    Astrowizard 24626

    Astronomia 1154

    Zvedotchet 6465

    Urania 30

    Starchik 32770

    Celestechild 17503

    The rule of thumb is, if you have any of the above asteroids conjunct your ascendant, north node, midheaven, in the ninth house, or making positive aspects to all, then these are excellent indicators of being an Astrology lover.

    So take a look and see if Astrology is part of your cosmic fate.


    Tanja Flanjak

    The starspeak of a 24 year old aspiring Astrologer using the stars and cosmos to navigate her way through life.

    Her Aries Sun gifts her with a fiery passionate drive, her Cancer ascendant allows her to be connected to the cosmic womb, and her Pisces Moon makes her an imaginative mystical translator of cosmic knowledge.

     


     

    Composite Midpoints – Where do You Connect? – PDF eBook

    Composite Midpoints – Where do You Connect? – PDF eBook

    by Alison Price

    An Astrology guide.


    Composite Midpoints

    Much like holding hands, see how your planets reach out to connect with other people and where the energy lies between you.

    Composite midpoints is an ancient method for chart reading but is as valid today as before.

    • Learn about this hidden but simple astrological technique.
    • Discover how to calculate your midpoints with other people.
    • Gain insights into your personal and business relationships with others.
    • Explore your close relationships through the dynamic of composite midpoints.


    Get your copy now

    Download your digital PDF eBook now.

    $5.99 US





     

     

     

    10 Job Seeking Tips when Mercury is Retrograde

    10 Job Seeking Tips when Mercury is Retrograde

    10 Job Seeking Tips When Mercury is Retrograde

    You may have heard something about Mercury retrograde and wondered what it is and what is does, and what to do and what not to do, or you may have even thought, “So what?”

    If you are interested in finding a job or growing your career, see what to do when Mercury is retrograde, so you can make the most of every moment.

     

     

    Planetary Energy

    To make the best use of planetary energy it is all about going with the flow and that means taking the meaning of the planet and noticing if it is holding up a “stop” or “go” sign.

    One example of planetary energy that you can see is the Moon and the tides.

    The Moon pulls the waters of the Earth and creates two high tides and two low tides each day.

    As each day moves on the times for the tides constantly changes. But every day there will be two incoming tides and two outgoing tides.

    It is at the incoming tide that you can yell “Surf’s up!” and trot down to the beach to practice your surfing.

    Well if you live on the coast and have a surf culture perhaps like in Hawaii, but you get the picture.

    You can only surf when the tide is coming in.

    There is no point in paddling out to hope to surf in if the tide is going out. Right?

    About Mercury

    Each year Mercury will be retrograde three times at around four-month intervals and for about three weeks each time.

    Each year the dates are different.

    You can find the exact dates when Mercury will be retrograde for the next few years below.

    You can mark these dates in your calendar now and lock out this special time.

    About Retrogrades

    Apparent retrograde is the optical illusion of something going backward and in this case, it is the planet, Mercury.

    Imagine you are on a train and moving along at a fair pace then suddenly you come upon another train on the next track.

    The other train is going slower than you are so your train overtakes it but the other train seems to be going backward.

    Both trains are driving forward but one seems to be going in reverse. That is the illusion of retrogradation.

    That a planet is retrograde can be interpreted as a time to change the pace and adjust your approach to things.

    When a planet is not retrograde it is direct.


     

    Mercury’s Retrograde Periods for 2021

    January 30th to February 21st from 26°27′ Aquarius to 11°01′ Aquarius.

    May 29th to June 22nd from 24°41′ Gemini to 16°09′ Gemini.

    September 27th to October 18th from 25°28′ Libra to 10°09′ Libra.

    Mercury Rules

    Every planet rules different things in life.

    Mercury rules communication, writing, signing, meetings, learning, schools, trading, auctions, merchants, agents and middlemen.

    In everyday life, this means all your shopping, buying and selling, texts, phone calls, emails and general chatting, as well as gossip, comes under Mercury’s influence.

    In the workplace, Mercury covers resumes, recruiters, interviews (by phone and in person).

    It also is concerned with paperwork and anything you sign, like a job offer.

     

    Timing is Everything

    There is a sequence in each retrograde cycle and five main parts:

    1. Mercury enters the pre-shadow period of about ten days before the actual retrograde starts.
    2. Mercury stations retrodgrade.
    3. The retrograde period itself, usually 3 weeks.
    4. Mercury stations direct.
    5. The after-shadow time of about a week and a half after Mercury has been retrograde.

    Phew.

    Before Mercury goes retrograde (and is direct) do the following:

    • Write your resume crafted for each specific job
    • Compose targeted cover letters
    • Apply for jobs via email and snail mail
    • Call companies on the phone
    • Reach out to your contact list and tell them you are looking for work
    • Take the initiative to let your family, friends, and others know you are searching for a new job
    • Start a short course on something you need in your job to build your marketable skills
    • Join professional societies and attend Meetups in your field
    • Create and develop your LinkedIn profile
    • Accept initial interviews
    • Sign job offers

    All of the above should be done when Mercury is not retrograde and preferably not in its shadow period.

    When Mercury is retrograde do the following:

    • Revise your resume
    • Refresh any cover letters
    • Get your filing up to date of jobs for which you have already applied
    • Write a list of companies and people with whom to follow up and contact them again
    • Research current thinking in your industry
    • Set up alerts for leads
    • Schedule second interviews (phone and in person)
    • Review job offers
    • Prepare your paperwork for jobs you plan to apply for after Mercury is retrograde as you wait for it to go direct

    During Mercury retrograde periods you can follow up and work on things that you have already done when Mercury was direct.

    Don’t start new things when Mercury is retrograde because if you do they will most likely be reversed when Mercury goes direct.

    Sometimes you have no choice because a job advert or interview comes up when Mercury is retrograde and you need a job so you have to go. In these instances be aware that the terms will change.

    As Mercury goes direct after the retrograde period, and if you did apply for a job or had an interview during the retrograde time, you can expect to return again and again for further interviews, or the job itself is shelved, or the job is morphed into something else altogether. 

    When Mercury is retrograde, avoid starting new things because if you do, you will have to review them later as Mercury goes direct.

    Recruiters

    Companies usually act in good faith when they place an advert for an opening in their business, but the effect of Mercury retrograde changes the terms or the agreement and thus they may no longer need the person that they were originally looking for when Mercury was retrograde.

    This cuts both ways for people looking for work and recruiters.

    Companies and career consultants are better off only placing vacancy adverts when Mercury is direct and communications are clear.

    If a recruiter seeks a candidate during the retrograde period they will have to spend three times as long emailing back and forth and interviewing people that cancel and can’t make it for whatever reason.

    All of this time-consuming effort is due to the Mercury retrograde effect which impacts communications, trade, and agency.

    The Square Aspect

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    Quadrants

    Quadrants

    by Alison Price Quadrants There are four quadrants; the first, second, third, and fourth quadrants. They are numbered starting from below the ascendant and in an anti-clockwise direction. Quadrants are formed by the ascendant/descendant axis and the MC/IC axes which...