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The Astrologer's Newsletter - September/October 2008

Letters to Transit

Re: Birth-time Editorial (July 2008)

What really is the 'correct birth-time'?

In my observation, this question is one about which many of us do not think clearly or logically.

Here are some of my ideas about the subject.

To cast a chart we use ONE moment in time. I am of the view (not original to me) that the 'birth moment' is the time of the cutting of the umbilical cord, as this is the first moment of physically separate existence.

Taking that as the starting point, it quickly becomes apparent on reflection that there may exist large margins of error even in birth-times taken from birth certificates, official records of one kind or another, or even confirmed times from the mother or another person present at the birth. The implications of this are far-reaching and important, I feel, for our work, in a practical sense. As mentioned in Val's excellent editorial, inaccurate charts can still be useful as teaching aids. However, if we are working with an individual's life, discussing important issues which involve timing, more caution is needed, I feel.

Here are some of the obvious implications of this consideration .........

1. It calls into question the validity of any large-scale statistical study which requires use of the Angles, which of course can shift radically with a corrected birth-time. GIGO (Garbage In, Garbage Out), to quote Lois Rodden, mentioned in your article!

2. It encourages a more flexible approach to working with an individual chart, unless and until the time has been verified by a thorough and systematic process of checking. Starting from the basis that the time could well be wrong, we proceed accordingly when examining transits, progressions, etc, especially.

3. It flags up the 'divinatory' element within our work, where useful and accurate information can be offered to a client, even on the basis of an inaccurate chart.

4. It encourages healthy doubt about birth-times which are rounded to the half, or even quarter-hour. After all, there is only a 15:1 chance of being born exactly on any of these points!

5. It highlights the need for working astrologers to understand the principles of rectification, and how to check a chart for accuracy.

6. When enquiring as to the source of a client's birth-time, we may need to be prepared to question its accuracy.

7. When working with transits, progressions, solar arcs etc and discussing timing, we need to be sure to state the proviso that the accuracy of what we say depends on the accuracy of the birth-time.

I'm sure that others might have additional thoughts on this ....

Melanie Reinhart, Astrologer



Re: Making Good Use of Astrology (May 2008)

I am writing in response to the excellent letter written by Phyllis Byne "Making Good Use of Astrology", which appeared in the May/June issue of Transit.

I, too feel that the study and/or a basic knowledge of astrology is vitally important to all mankind, and I hope to see it soon incorporated as part of a regular school curriculum, starting as early as possible in an individualís life. As a practising part-time astrologer, I am acutely aware of its great help to others, especially in helping one to live one's 'gifts' (as evidenced by oneís natal and progressed birth charts, and transits thereto). And it is of course invaluable in all matters of relationships.

Given the upcoming transit of Pluto into Capricorn with its enormous elimination/transformation potential in all structures, I think that we are indeed on the threshold of astrology becoming a very vibrant and necessary tool to achieve the rebirth that this planet so very much needs.

I am reminded of a recent quote: "Think globally, act locally", and what better way to do this than through the astrological window of life.


Elizabeth M Robinson


Certificate from the Faculty of Astrological Studies and member of the Astrological Association

Rhode Island, USA