When I talk to students and clients about astrology, there are two analogies I like to use: the toolbox and the kaleidoscope.
Part 1: The Toolbox
Why is astrology like a toolbox? Think of it like this. Every one of us incarnates into our physical lives with the same toolbox in which there are nine tools. (Vedic Astrology uses nine planets – the Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn, Rahu, and Ketu. For more information about the planets, please refer to archived posts).
We all have these nine “tools” positioned somewhere in our charts. These planets also rule the twelve zodiac signs which distinguish the houses of our charts. The time, date, and location of our birth determines which planet rules what house. The signs represent the masculine and feminine (the active or outward, and the passive or receptive) qualities of the planets– which I’ll explain in a future post.
Here’s the thing. We all work with the planets (the tools in our toolbox) differently. The condition the planets are in at the moment of our birth is crucial. For example, if someone is born when Jupiter is strong and well placed, that individual will use ‘the tool’ Jupiter in a much more prominent and effective way than someone who, let’s say, is born with Jupiter in a weak condition and poorly positioned.
How we act and react in this life has much to do with our culture and nationality, our family and religious upbringing, our generation and societal expectations or demands, and our karmic baggage we bring from past lives. Along with our varying levels of maturity, these conditions are why each of us handles the nine tools in our toolboxes differently. Our unique evolution and where we are spiritually conditions how we work with our tools.
We are born at the precise moment when the time, date, and place of birth lines up with our karma (our actions and reactions) and our dharma (our unique path). How perfect is the Universe to see to it that we all get a fair share, that we all come in with the same tools—but that depending on our own evolution (and free will) and the type of life lessons and experiences our Soul plans for us to gain new awareness through, how well we are able to use each of the tools in a particular lifetime varies as much as we vary from each other.
Astrologers and astrology students can determine by analyzing a chart how well a person can use their tools, noting which planet(s) will be preferred or the ‘path of least resistance’ and which planet(s) will perhaps be ignored, feared, underestimated, or even misused (not on account of the planet(s) but on account of the individual’s inability to manifest or take right action).
I hope the idea of the toolbox, certainly a simplified analogy, illustrates that no matter who we are, where we live, our race, religion, or gender, at the core of our true expression, we are all working with the same nine tools and learning to work with them in our own particular ways. Anyone who wishes to know more about the tools in their toolbox will benefit from an astrology reading or by studying astrology for themselves.
In Part 2 I share my thoughts on how the kaleidoscope is a colorful analogy to understand the science of astrology.