Astrology: skeptics welcome.
When you think of astrology, what first comes to mind? Is it your sun sign, the weekly horoscopes you see in newspapers, or a wonky new-agey scam? If you’re in the latter group, I’m here to tell you that astrology is not a crock of you-know-what, but actually has some historical merit to its practice. While I’m not here to convince you that astrology is the be-all, end-all way of understanding yourself (because nothing is), I can inform you as to how it can be a useful thing to utilize as you see fit.
Let’s first look at astrology’s historical roots, shall we? The first mentions of astrology date all the way back to Babylonian and Hellenistic days, with ancient Egyptians having been one of the first societies to develop extensive knowledge around it. Astrology was also developed as a way of further understanding the mysteries of the universe and was known as a way to combine science and religion. The first known horoscope was read in 410 BC, so astrology is older than most modern religions!
While there’s of course no surefire way to prove that astrology is legit, it is based on mathematical principles and diagrams — so even if you don’t believe the interpretations, you can rest easy knowing that it’s based on actual charting. If you’re curious about the interpretive piece and want to explore a bit more, here are some tips for how to make the most of astrological readings.
1. First, Use A Trusted Source
The horoscopes you see in tabloids or on cheap news sites aren’t a good place to find out how your fate lies in the stars. If you’ve ever read your horoscope and thought “This is so not true...and very generic!” you’re probably right. To get a better quality astrological prediction, ask yourself some questions: Does the astrology reader have any sort of legitimate credentials? How long have they been practicing? Do they talk about details like the planetary influences on your sun sign? Do they only mention your sun sign (you have other signs that influence your personality, too)? Before picking up any sort of secondhand source, do your homework on their background.
2. Map Out Your Birth Chart
This is probably the most important step in getting accurate astrology, and also where individuality comes into play. Every one of us has a birth chart that shows where the planets, stars, and all 12 signs of the zodiac were in the exact moment and location of your birth — yes, the time and location of your birth do influence your astrological fate! This is where individuality comes into play, since two people having the exact same placement is extremely rare, if not impossible.
Your birth chart will also tell you what your moon sign, midheaven sign, and rising sign are, which also can say a lot about how you’re perceived in the world and your personality. There are so many free tools you can use to map out your birth chart for free, one of which you can check out here.
3. Consult Experts
If you really want to get the most accurate and highest-quality reading, the best place to go is to an expert. Getting a professional astrological reading or charting will give you the best information by far, since you can talk one on one with a professional astrologer who has spent decades in their profession.
I would recommend getting basic principles of astrology down first before doing this, however, since otherwise you may not understand the significance of everything they tell you in your session. Self-study also never hurts, since it’s a free way to get the less complicated stuff down before you get into talking to experts about some of the more technical aspects. For example, you might want to map out your birth chart and do some reading of it yourself before having a professional astrologer do it for you, so that you can go in with questions and already have an idea of what to expect.
4. And Remember, It’s Supposed To Be FUN!
If there’s one thing I want you to take away from this, it’s that astrology is, first and foremost, supposed to be fun. Even if you don’t find it’s particularly enlightening for you, it can be interesting to think about how the planets could influence you. Going into things with an open mind will make it a lot more fun than if you’re just looking to be proven right in your skepticism.