Monday, September 7, 2009

Natal Chart Analysis: “Let go. Jump in.”

The natal chart is the cornerstone of all astrological analysis. It is a snapshot of the heavens at the time and place of birth. The natal chart for an individual reveals a plethora of information about the entity in terms of both their past incarnations and their intentions for this life. Unraveling the natal chart reveals unconscious motivations and patterns as well as the potential for growth.

Below is a very brief analysis of a natal chart for a 30-yr old married female. This represents just a few major points that I feel are significant. It starts with some general information and then gets more specific.

Natal chart (click to enlarge)


The horoscope chart is divided into four major quadrants. The cusps of the 1st, 4th, 7th, and 10th houses represent the dividing lines of these quadrants. The 1st house/7th house cusp line (bold horizontal line) represents the horizon. All planets above the horizon at the birth are above this line and all planets below the horizon are below this line in the chart. This line represents the divide between the inner and the outer focus of the individual.

In this chart, most of the planets are located above the horizon line but three major outer planets are located below the horizon. This would suggest that, in general, she tends to make decisions based on outer motivations (i.e. laws, family, and friends) and based on what she perceives to be expected of her. However, with the outer planets below the horizon, this would suggest that with maturity, she is gaining more of an ability to discern based on her own inner beliefs and yearnings without the need for outer approval.

In terms of the left and right sides of the chart, it is quite obvious that for the most part all of the planets are located on the left side. This suggests that she is someone who tends to be self-motivated in terms of taking action and making changes to her life direction. Unlike her, people with planets dominant on the right side of the chart usually get cues for life changes through the people in their lives rather than from inner yearnings.

In this case, we would say that she tends to be the initiator of her life direction and that she has a tendency to judge her choices according to what she perceives is expected of her. Though as she matures, she is developing more of an ability to go forth with her own direction according to her own discernment and set of personal morals without as much of a need for outside approval.

Elements & Qualities

Each of the 12 signs of the zodiac has one element and one quality associated with it. The elements include fire, earth, air, and water while the qualities include cardinal, fixed, and mutable.

In terms of the elements, she is dominated by fire and earth energy and is relatively lacking some air and water energy. Fire is the energy of inspiration and creativity while earth is the energy of practicality and order. She is likely to attract partners and friends who exhibit the air and water energy that she lacks. Air is the energy of intellect and sociability while water is the energy of the soul and emotional realm. She is NOT without these energies but just has less access to these energies than she does with the fire and earth energies.

In terms of the qualities, she is dominated by mutable energy, has average fixed energy, and is relatively lacking in cardinal energy. Cardinal energy has to do with leading, and starting new projects. Fixed energy has to do with loyalty and sticking with things which have already started and seeing them through to the end. Mutable energy has to do with flexibility and the ability to adjust in life.

In general, we would say that she has a slightly more difficult time getting new projects off the ground but once they are in motion she tends to stick with them and adjust herself as needed to ensure their completion.

The Ascendant (or Rising Sign)

Most people are familiar with their astrological Sun-signs which are based on what time of the year you are born. But most people are unaware of their ascendant sign which is the sign that was rising on the eastern horizon at the time of birth. In the natal chart, this is the sign which is where the 1st house begins. The ascendant, or rising sign, represents our ‘front door’. It represents how we present ourselves to people when they first meet us and is used by us as a shield, or a mask. It represents how we perceive we are supposed to be in order to be accepted by our family, friends, and anyone else in our lives.

In this chart, we see that the sign of Virgo was rising on the eastern horizon at the time of her birth. Virgo is a modest, helpful, and logical energy. But it can also be hypercritical and obsessive compulsive with details. Somewhere along the line, she perceived that being a modest and helpful servant that approached life logically was the ‘acceptable’ way to be. She learned that organizing herself, her possessions, and her life path was an acceptable approach that would yield ‘predictability’…a highly valued quality in her perception. Also, because she presents herself this way, most people would describe her as such upon meeting her. They would say that she is organized, detail-oriented and someone who is very capable of taking on remedial tasks with very few errors.

The Moon

If anyone is able to penetrate the mask and enter through our front door then this is where people meet up with our ‘burglar alarm’. The Moon in our charts represents our unconscious programming and our reactive instincts when we feel threatened or worse…when we feel vulnerable. It also represents are perceived needs in order to feel safe.

With this chart, we once again meet up with Virgo energy as the Moon was in the sign of Virgo at the time of her birth. This just accentuates the qualities with which she already comes across. When she is at her most vulnerable she will insist on order and predictability and will feel most comforted when she perceives that her life is planned well. She may resemble Monica from ‘Friends’, for example, and compulsively clean when she feels vulnerable (Courtney Cox actually has a Virgo Moon in her chart which is part of the reason why she could play that role the way she did).

However, the Moon’s house placement complicates matters as it is found in the 12th house of secrets and escape. Even though she is comfortable coming across with Virgo energy as seen in her ascendant, when she is at her most vulnerable she finds it difficult to honestly express her need for order and perfection and may try to appear more ‘in control’ and less like she is ‘in need’ of control. She may also be tempted to escape from life’s unpredictability through movies, alcohol or other avoidance techniques.

The Sun

Imagine a life without fear or the need to protect ourselves. Imagine if we perceived that it was ‘okay’ to come across as who we really are inside. In that imaginary life we would come across with our true inner essence which is represented by our Sun sign energy. The Sun represents our ‘true self’ and the life force from which our embers burn. The greatest gift that we can offer the world would be to fully express our Sun energy and use it in the most positive way that we can.

In this chart, the Sun was in the very last degree of Leo (29°) at the time of her birth. At its most positive, Leo energy is generous, expressive, creative and generally a ‘source’ of energy. Negatively, Leo energy can be self-centered, stubborn, and boastful. Leo energy is about expression in its purest form without the need for a purpose. Having this Leo Sun in her 12th house is like hiding or storing away this pure creative energy. As someone who has Virgo rising and a Virgo Moon, she likely ‘perceives’ that personal expression is only ‘okay’ if it has a purpose or if it is useful. Therefore, she likely perceives Leo energy in its more negative manifestations (i.e. stubbornness, boastfulness, and self-absorption). This leads to a general lack of self-acceptance which is often unconscious. She may feel ‘guilty’ when she isn’t expressing herself with a purpose. It can be difficult to just let loose and have fun if she perceives that there are things to accomplish.

However, the 29th degree of a sign represents a sense of urgency. And with her Sun at 29° Leo, there’s little doubt that at some point in her life she will unleash her pure creative Leonian energy…most likely through some useful, service-oriented avenue of expression (Virgo rising).

Image of the Masculine and the Feminine

In most cases, our images of the masculine and the feminine are developed through our perception of our parental figures. Like us, our parental figures are complex and dynamic but there are always those parts of them that seem to stick out more significantly to us. We will often even disagree with our siblings in terms of our perceptions of our parents as well. While there is no overarching objective description of our masculine and feminine influences found in our birth charts, there is the subjective impression and our personal perception of those influences.

In this chart, the Sun is in Leo on the 12th house cusp and it is conjunct Venus and Jupiter (both in Leo). When I see this configuration, I immediately receive an image of a father figure with an abundance of creative talents and abilities but which were or are somehow sacrificed or locked in away in a closet out of fear. This could be the man who is a great singer but shrinks at the idea of actually doing something about it in terms of recognition, for example. He could have an entrepreneurial disposition and yet remain at a more traditional type of work setting out of fear or concerns for safety. I am speculating, of course, but my point is that her image of the masculine is that of a very positive creativity that somehow gets blocked in its expression.

The Moon is in Virgo in the 12th house and is conjunct Saturn in Virgo while squaring Neptune in Sagittarius and sextiling Mars in Cancer. This immediately conjures up an image of the mother figure who stresses hard work and sacrifice as primary virtues of living well. The Moon is also in a conjunction with the North Node of the Moon suggesting that her relationship with her mother has been the more influential relationship for better or for worse. Therefore these qualities of hard work and sacrifice at the expense of enjoyment are well ingrained in her. She may have also experienced her mother as someone who was cold with affection if, for example, her chores were not complete. There’s a perception here that love is a reward for what you ‘do’ and love is not received freely without putting in your time and doing your work. She may have also perceived her mother figure as an escape artist through alcohol, day dreaming or any other form of escape. She likely perceived her father figure as more free with love and affection than her mother figure but the sense of sacrifice and escape was felt from both sides.

Her parental influences are obviously more dynamic than these simple descriptions but she picks up on these particular ‘parts’ of her parental influences because these qualities are mirrors for her own inner imbalances and life’s work. It is impossible to see our own face without a mirror, and our parental influences often play this reflective role for the purpose of our own inner recognition.

Her Resume

There are some clues in a natal chart as to what themes have been prevalent in the person’s past before the current incarnation. Any karmic issues (energetic imbalances) are revealed and often present themselves in our lives for the purpose of resolution, or alignment.

In her chart, there is a lot of guilt associated with the perceived ills of her self-indulgence. In some way she has had experiences of being the center of attention and has experienced how that can all fall apart when one forgets that our creative expression can be shared and not just idolized. In some way, she has carried over some guilt associated with her own ability to express herself and lead others. While she has certainly developed her own creative self-expression in a very positive sense, she may have had times where she misrepresented herself to preserve her own image within whatever ego she was indulging at the time. She also tended toward being in control of her life and potentially the lives of others. She has carried over a fear of things falling apart if they are not carefully controlled. On a soul level, she points the finger at her own self-indulgences as the reason for things having fallen apart and her lack of self-forgiveness for this represents her most poignant karmic debt.

Because of her own perceptions of her past experiences, she may find herself in situations in this life where she gets anxious when things are not in order or under her control. She may also get anxious and judgmental when she sees someone expressing themselves freely without a purpose. To her these conditions represent ‘danger’ and should be stopped. Because she was willing to twist information in her favor in the past, in this life she may find that putting things into the proper words is very difficult and takes more effort than it does for most. She may also find that maintaining connections with people in her immediate environment (i.e. neighbors, siblings etc.) takes extra effort and these connections seem to dissolve and fall apart all too easily. Also, because of her guilt, she may find herself in many situations where she sacrifices her own wants and needs to help others. Unconsciously, she feels as though it is her fate to serve others’ needs and to neglect her own creative yearnings. She can be a sucker for a sob story and find it difficult to say ‘no’ to any request for help.

Her Contract

The natal chart can also serve as a contract for the current life in terms of intentions and growth. Parts of our contract deals with balancing out our karma from the past while other parts deal with breaking new ground and having new experiences.

While there is much information with regards to her intentions, one theme dominates the overall picture. It is very clear that one of the primary intentions of this life is to learn about forgiveness, letting go, and having faith in life. As someone coming from experiences of being in control and being able to direct her life, releasing these tendencies can be a challenge. In order to put herself on this eventual path her life is no doubt strewn with tests along the way which force her to release what she cannot control and to discriminate in terms of where she is willing to serve. She can feel overwhelmed with responsibility for the world’s problems or at least for the problems of those people within her own piece of the world. Her first lesson is to learn how to forgive herself for her own perceived faults and errors of the past. Without this first step, she can feel like she owes it to everyone to help them and that she needs to ignore her own creative yearnings in the process. Her real challenge is learning to forgive and love herself enough to allow herself to be discriminating in her choices.

Catering to the masses can have its positive and negative components. Positively, she has been blessed with an enormously creative mind and an uncanny ability to understand and anticipate upcoming trends which are about to befall the masses. She no doubt is ‘ahead of her time’ with her ideas. But because she is so sensitive to her effects on others this has probably lead to feelings of isolation and feeling unaccepted as people may not be ready for what she is more than ready to create. This perception of being unsupported for her ideas and creations has been a gift however, since it can also inspire her to become her own source of support and spiritual nourishment. When the wells of nourishment come from within, there is no way that the outside world can turn off the spigot. It is only around the time of the first Saturn Return (~age 29) when the feelings of rejection and isolation can begin to be perceived in this positive light. And it is at this time when she would be first willing to trust her self and trust life enough to actually take a chance on any speculative creative ideas that she may have been cooking up behind the scenes.

She is being called to a life of self-empowerment where she directs her own efforts honestly and integrally. As time goes by, she gains more personal strength and more personal initiative. All it takes is that first step of self-acceptance and self-forgiveness where she decides that she is worth it and that she is not responsible for everything and everyone else around her. She knows that she is a generous person who is willing to serve but it is only when she can discriminate and make her own decisions about who, what and when she will serve that she will fully utilize her most positive potentials. There is also considerable ambition noted here and without a proper outlet this can lead to the more tyrannical potentials of her past. She needs an unconventional service where she can bring something new to the table for the world or at least for her world. She is full of ideas and when she is in alignment with this flow she seems to run into just the right people at just the right time to assist her with her ambitions. But when she follows a more traditional path and ignores her own creative yearnings, she can fall right back into old patterns of detail-obsession and the tyrannical direction (bossing) of other people.

Current Spotlights

While the natal chart is a snapshot of the time and place of birth, the planets keep moving after our birth at their different rates of speed. By tracking the location (green planets on the outside of the chart) of the planets relative to our natal charts we can recognize time periods of significance with regards to the planets involved. While there is much more going on with this chart than I will discuss here, the following are some of the more significant recent happenings in my opinion.

The Sun makes its annual trip around the zodiac and spends roughly one month in each of the 12 houses along the way. This time of year (late August through mid-September) is when the Sun moves through her 12th house. In her natal chart, the 12th house (letting go, forgiveness, release, and healing) is probably the most significant house and so represents the most significant realm of life in focus for this incarnation. So it makes sense that we are highlighting this realm of her life with this reading right now.

Saturn spends approximately 2+ years in each sign and takes approximately 29 years to make one trip around the zodiac. Saturn represents structures, form, reality and work. Saturn transits can feel very negative and heavy when they occurring but in retrospect they are like having a janitor clean up the house in which the visit occurs and we can feel a lot lighter in terms of those realms after it is finished. From early September 2007 through September 18, 2009 (yes, just days away), Saturn is touring her 12th house as well. To add to this, Saturn is in her 12th house in her natal chart which means that Saturn made its first 29-year return during these last two years (September 2008 through June 2009 to be exact) as well.

These last two years with Saturn touring her 12th house have been a period of releasing old patterns and learning how to let go of control and to have faith. I would venture to guess that this period has been by far the most grueling emotional test she has ever faced. With major natal planets in that house it just made it all the more intense.

It started from September 2007 through June of 2008 when Saturn first entered the 12th house and immediately made a conjunction with her natal Sun. For that part of this two-year purging episode she was forced to deal with the part of her father figure that represents her own blocked creative potential. She came face-to-face with seemingly insurmountable barriers with regards to her own assumptions about following through with her own desires. By June of 2008, she had come to some conclusions regarding these matters.

Then in late August 2008, Saturn made a relatively quick conjunction with her natal Moon which also included a sextile to her natal Mars. This was a time for a personal heart-to-heart with herself. Basically she was at a point where she was deciding whether she was going to fall into old patterns or take on new territory. She was dealing with the part of her mother figure that represents the inability to merge work and enjoyment which therefore leads to sacrifice. With the sextile to Mars also occurring, this was an opportunity to follow her own ambitions and not fall back into patterns that she knew would not work for her in her life path.

Then after a 2-3 week breather, Saturn made its first return to her natal Saturn from September 2008 through June 2009. The first Saturn Return is considered the astrological birthright of adulthood. The first 29 years or so are considered a period of growth and karmic balancing. The next 29 years are the period of maturity and taking on our chosen path. The third (and usually last) 29 years are the period of release and dissemination of all that we have acquired and learned for the betterment of others. In her particular case (the first Saturn Return with natal Saturn in the 12th house), this return period represented a threshold from the old way of trying to control life and feeling responsible for others to a new way of surrender and release to life and the development of a new personal spiritual support system from which this trust can flow.

Now as Saturn approaches its final days in her 12th house, she is likely feeling the load lighten a bit each day. The last two years have been pretty intense but the good news is that Saturn is leaving her 12th house on September 18, 2009 and won’t be back for almost 30 years. The next 12th house transit won’t be nearly as intense as this one either. Now that Saturn has essentially cleaned out her closet and released all things that are no longer necessary, the transit through the first house over the next 2+ years will be a time of building the new self based on the new awareness gained from the 12th house transit. The 12th house transit was about removing the blocks and the 1st house transit is about building new structures and facing the world in a different much more emotionally mature way. Self confidence will grow gradually over the next two years but not without confidence tests along the way. When Saturn reaches her natal Pluto in her 1st house in the Fall of 2011, this will set of a new cycle of personal empowerment. She will no doubt come into her own authority at this time. But what she does with it is up to her.


These last two years have been pretty rough to say the least. But the good news is that this period has been an essential and very important period relative to the overall karmic imbalances and the intention of this particular incarnation. In retrospect, she will look back on these last couple of years as the cornerstone of her re-alignment with her true path. The more she learns to forgive herself and others, release old hurts, and just generally have faith in herself to successfully integrate her dynamic creative potentials with her existing responsibilities, the more joy she will experience. These last two years have put these theories to the test by exposing her to situations that have triggered old patterns so that she had the opportunity to practice release and forgiveness. Perhaps she did not see it this way when going through it, but in retrospect she just may have a new understanding that she can apply to the rest of her life.

Sometimes I try and pick a song that really sums up a chart. Usually a song will come to my head as I analyze the chart configurations. A great song that was in my head for this analysis and that sums up this general life path and especially the last two years of this life in my opinion would be: Let Go” by Frou Frou.

And so it is…

Readers, this was just a taste of what type of information a Natal Chart Analysis can offer you. If you’re interested in a complete analysis for you or someone you know, please contact me at!

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