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About the Planets

The planets in astrology represent the actors in life's drama. The planets symbolize the forces which make things happen, interpreted in whatever context is appropriate. On a global scale, the planets represent forces of nature which cause weather, for example, and other natural phenomena. In social or cultural terms, they represent people, institutions, and organizations playing on the national or the world stage; or, more psychologically, they represent forces working within the collective consciousness of a group, a nation, or the world at large. For an individual, the planets represent the various functions of consciousness through which that person interacts with the world around him or her.

In every case, the key element of the planets is action: the planets represent the forces that make things happen. Planetary motions, therefore, trace out the unfolding course of action in any situation. As the planets touch sensitive points in a horoscope, and as they interact with one another through the angles they form, we see the ebb and the flow of the plot of life.

Remaining stricly on an individual level of interpretation for the time being, we can think of the planets as functions of consciousness -- as the distinct modes of activity through which an individual consciousness interacts with its environment on all levels: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. Each function operates in a particular manner and serves a particular purpose within the consciousness as a whole. Sometimes the various functions work in harmony with one another, while at other times they clash and pull the person in several directions at once. Although the underlying psychology of a human consciousness is extremely complex, the planetary motions enable us to see clearly the various forces at work and their interactions with one another.

The planetary motions are most often referred to an individual natal horoscope for interpretation. The ways in which these "transiting" planetary motions interact with the individual horoscope bring the abstract concepts behind the planetary symbols to a focus upon and within a specific individual. They depict the complex interactions among the various forces and functions in and around the person on all levels: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. They show, in short, what is happening to that person, as well as how he or she is responding.

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