Basic Astrology: Understanding Your Personal Universe

“Man is a Universe within himself.” – Bob Marley

The Universe Within

Astrology has fascinated me for many years; as a teenager, I pored over Linda Goodman’s book Sun Signs. Written in 1968 this was the first book on astrology included on the New York Times Best Seller list.

I struggled with self-confidence and depression as a child, desperately wanting to find myself and be okay with me. I began studying astrology to hopefully develop a better understanding of my personal makeup in order to find some part of me to love. This has helped me develop acceptance and honor my individuality.

Over the years I have learned a bit more about astrology–often completing charts on for friends and clients to help them learn about themselves. This has guided them on their own journey here on earth.

The following information is from a handout I developed to help others interpret their chart for the first time. Astrology is quite complex and amazingly accurate in its purest form.


sunset over a lake


Sun Sign

Your Sun Sign is your main influence. Your Sun Sign is determined based on which astrological sign the Sun was traveling through at the time of your birth. The Sun is in each sign for approximately 30 days each year. Your Sun Sign determines how others see you.  It governs your individuality, your distinctive style, & your drive to fulfill your goals in life.


Rising (Ascending) Sign

Your Ascending/Rising (these words are interchangeable) sign is the astrological sign that was rising over the eastern horizon at the time of your birth. Many astrologers, particularly the earliest ones, believe your Ascendant is just as influential as your Sun Sign & possibly even more important. Your Rising Sign determines your outward personality–your image that you project. It determines your self-sufficiency, self-determination & your self-interest. It signifies your goals, aims, & objectives & indicates the main thrust of your creative powers.

Your Sun Sign + Rising Sign = your unique impact on the world.


Moon Sign

Your Moon Sign reflects your more hidden aspects. Others may sense your Moon traits but do not see them outwardly. The Moon influences our emotions, instincts, and the unconscious. It is your inner core. Your Moon Sign regulates how you express joy and spontaneity, pursue pleasures & dreams, & how you react to emotional stimuli. It also determines states of jealousy, brooding, & fear.

Your Moon Sign influences your receptivity to others & how others feel about you. It has a strong influence on love relationships.



There are 12 Houses in Astrology – each describes a separate category of life situations & experiences.  The planets were located in a certain house at the moment of your birth. Each House represents a separate area & specific function of your life. Any house that has one or more planets in it is strengthened by their presence in specific ways dependent upon which planet is in that house.


The 12 Houses:

  • First – Self: your mannerisms, disposition, temperament & style
  • Second – Money & Possessions: what you will acquire & lose
  • Third – Communications: Self-expression/ family ties/ day-to-day travel
  • Fourth – Home: Home life past, present & future
  • Fifth – Creativity & Sex: Everything you do for pleasure & to express yourself creatively (the arts as well as pregnancy/children).
  • Sixth – Services & Health: Your need to help others & be useful in the world.
  • Seventh – Marriage & Partnership: Your mate/partnerships in marriage & business/divorce, & remarriage
  • Eighth – Death & Regeneration: Spiritual transformation/birth, life, & death & the afterlife/surgery/psychic powers
  • Ninth – Mental Exploration & Long-Distance Travel: higher education/exploration for depth & meaning/ foreign travel & business in foreign lands
  • Tenth – Career: Ambition, aspiration, & attainment/ standing in the community/outward expression of your talents
  • Eleventh – Hopes & Wishes, Friends: Long term dreams & goals/ Intellectual pleasures/ friends & acquaintances who serve your aspirations
  • Twelfth – Self-undoing; Spiritual Reward & Debt: Defines the limitations placed on your life/ The House of Karma – contains the rewards & punishments for the deeds one commits in the world. Psychic powers & meaning of life are associated with this house.


North Node

This is a point on your astrological chart that focuses on self-assessment and growth. The North Node is about introspection and self-improvement. Understanding your North Node helps you become aware of positive qualities you possess & should expand on, gifts to use, your life purpose, areas needing change, and skills to be mastered. Karma from past lives is addressed here.


Check out my article on Dream Recall for inner guidance.

Astrology is fascinating and deeply rooted in history. Some suggest this study of the universal impact on people and events goes back to Babylonian times. Rooted in our existence–there’s a reason for its continued following.

Learn more at

Let me know what you find out about yourself or please share any insight you have on the topic of astrology in the comments below!

Peace & Love, Sandra


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