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Q. What is astrology, and why should I bother to find out about it?

A. The short answer to that question is, “Timing is Everything.” When you use astrology, you can tell when it’s the best time to do something to change your life, or whether it’s best to stay right where you are. The movement of the planets, the way they interact with one another and how they relate to the way the planets were when you were born will give you information that makes your life easier. Astrology is as old as humankind. Some call it a science, others say it’s sorcery. Wherever your opinion might fall on that spectrum, you certainly can’t argue about one fact: it’s wildly popular! People love to read their “horoscopes,” which are mini-advice columns based on the date on which they were born. Beyond all that, astrology is the study of how the planets, and sometimes the “stars”, affect the things that happen here on Planet Earth. No one knows why it works. No one understands how it is that people born within the same zodiac sign (the time period when the sun goes through one of 12 special constellations) seem to be so similar. This information has been around since the beginning of humankind’s arrival on earth and to this day it remains popular because it just rings true! There are tons of ways to use astrology, and you’ll learn about them by visiting ReadTheStars.com every day. You can read, watch and listen to fascinating information about yourself, your friends, your spouse, your family; or you can learn how astrology affects the news, politics, weather and sports. Astrology is also used to help people time events such as weddings and business meetings; and there are even techniques that can help deeply frustrated people find lost objects! Astrology is a form of “divination,” which loosely means it has the ability to help us see through to the ultimate truth of a situation through some unseen wisdom. It’s a bit like reading Tarot Cards or using the I Ching, but it’s a lot more complicated. Because there is such a wide variety of factors involved in astrology, we can get many more details about our daily lives, and answers to some of our most burning questions in very personal ways. It’s not as easy as you might think to become an astrologer. I studied for about 13 years before I was actually certified by the National Council of Geocosmic Research Professional Astrologer’s Alliance! Now, yes, I can read the stars, but I also learn something new every day - and I want to share it all with you. So, even without all those years of study and testing, you too can benefit from the wisdom of astrology. All you have to do is keep coming back to ReadTheStars.com as often as possible!

Q. What’s My Sign?

A. The Zodiac Signs are special constellations that appear along the celestial equator of the earth. They divide the sky into twelve portions. As we look at the sky from Earth, we see how the sun goes through each of these constellations, or signs, at different times of the year. When you were born, the sun was in one of these signs – your sun sign! Here are sun signs and the time periods they cover:

  • ARIES (March 21-April 20)
  • TAURUS (April 21-May 20)
  • GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
  • CANCER (June 21-July 21)
  • LEO (July 22-August 21)
  • VIRGO (August 22-September 20)
  • LIBRA (September 21-October 21)
  • SCORPIO (October 22-November 21)
  • SAGITTARIUS (November 22-December 20)
  • CAPRICORN (December 21-January 20)
  • AQUARIUS (January 21-February 20)
  • PISCES (February 21-March 20)

Q. What if I’m “On the Cusp”?

A. Lots of people are born on the days on either end of one of the zodiac sign time periods, and not all the lists of dates you might see are the same. Because the sun’s motion and our calendar are not totally in sync, the days the sun is in one sign or the other might change by a day or so. It can be hard to tell, if you’re born around the 21st or 22nd of the month, if you fall under one sign or the other, or if you could be a little of both (a condition known as “on the cusp”).  In my opinion, there is no such thing as “on the cusp.” When you were born, the sun was in one sign or the other sign. If you can’t be sure just by the date, you can do one of two things. You can get your time of birth and have your chart cast by an astrologer or an on line calculation service; or you can read for both signs and figure out which one suits you the best. (You may want to ask some friends and family about that, though, if you want an objective opinion!)

Q. What is a RETROGRADE?

A. From time to time, you will hear people in astrology talk about this or that planet being "retrograde."  For a period of time, a planet may seem to be moving backwards through the sky.  This happens because of the relative motion of the planets and the various speeds they travel at as they make their journeys around the sun.  Compare this to being on one of two trains, both going forward.  Because one is moving faster than the other, the second train will seem to be moving in reverse.  When a planet is retrograde, it means we get a "break" from the full strength of their influence for a time.  The outer planets such as Saturn, Uranus and Pluto spend much of the year moving in retrograde, and we notice their motion more around the times they "station," or get ready to change direction, backward or forward.  When faster moving planets such as Jupiter, Mars, Venus and Mercury go retrograde, we tend to notice the absence of their full force more acutely.  The characteristics of the planets in retrograde tend to affect us inwardly.  Most often we notice Venus Retrograde, when feelings about former relationships (as well as communication from ex-relationship partners) come out of the woodwork, and Mercury Retrograde, when Mercury's function of allowing us to communicate smoothly is lessened.  During Mercury retrograde, difficulties with contracts, electronics, transportation and just about any human activity that involves getting something from one place to another commonly arise.  Check ReadTheStars.com regularly.  There will always be articles, horoscopes and other postings that point out when the retrograde periods begin and end.

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