For those who are not already aware of it, a horoscope is not a text which tells us what will happen next week!
A (birth) horoscope forms a picture of the positions of the planets at the time of a person's birth. The name comes from Greek 'hora' = hour and 'skeptomai' = look. The interpretation of this chart is only the second step, first extensive calculations must be undertaken to form a basis for interpretation.
The calculations can be performed on a pocket calculator, whereby you still need ephemerides to find the positions of the planets as well as house tables. You will need one or two hours to calculate a birth horoscope, depending on your level of experience.
In this era of advanced computer technology its easier to use an Astrological Computer Program, which produces a horoscope containing more or less extensive text interpretations magically on the screen. There are additional advantages when complicated calculations are necessary, for example to produce solar, synastry, composite or transit charts. You'll find more information about Astrological Software under Software Tips, Suggestions and Addresses.
First we would like to explain the terms we just used with which beginners may not be all too familiar:
Today individual Astrology is based on the Birth Chart (Radix) which is used for further calculations. A birth chart is an individual analysis of our aptitudes, talents, weaknesses, fears and emotions. In this day of modern psychology birth charts are not seen as inescapable fate, but as an opportunity and a challenge, which can help us reach our potential as depicted in our horoscope.
A Solar Chart is used to analyze a particular year more closely. First the return of the sun to its exact position in the birth chart is determined. This point in time is then used to calculate the horoscope.
Synastry, Composite- and Combine horoscopes are used to examine personal relationships. While Synastry charts are created by comparing two different horoscopes, Composite and Combine produce one chart out of two different horoscopes. For example a Composit Chart is done by calculating the midpoint of a common planet in the horoscopes, for example the center between a woman´s Venus and her friend´s.
Transit Charts calculate what laymen commonly associate with astrology a 'peek into the future'. The planet´s current positions are set in relation to the birth chart.
Generally the planets,
houses and signs are interpreted the same way in each type of horoscope. It's easy to interpret any type of horoscope once the basic principle and the energies are grasped, aside from finer details of course.
One question can't be avoided: why people assume that gazing at the stars can provide information about life on earth? Here we should avoid terms such as 'influence'. It´s helpful to imagine the entire universe and all its life forms in relation to each other, so that nothing can be seen as isolated event or entity. The principle 'as above so below' explains how the time quality presiding at the time of birth may show consequences during a person's entire life. These ideas are easier to understand in their historical context. Man has always watched the heavens in order to recognize the cycles for determining the proper times for planting and harvesting. As society developed people became interested in their individual personalities and began applying astrology to personal use. Today it is still possible to make a horoscope for a country (oriented on the exact time of the state's founding) or for some other earthshaking event. The interpretations of these horoscopes are often fascinating.
The central Astrological terms such as the zodiac, the houses and the planets will be explained in more detail on the following pages. We would like to emphasize that the explanations are designed to arouse your curiosity about this boundless field. We would like to encourage you to delve deeper into this body of knowledge and to develop the necessary intuition. Use this chance to develop your own kind of Astrology. This is one area which has not been limited by strict rules and regulations, but is open to individual sensitivity. Astrology is just as diverse as the life which it describes!