Natal Astrology
There are several different ways one can approach an interpretation of a birth chart. For me the ideal way is to fuse the exoteric with the esoteric, but this is not always relevant to the needs of the client. Some clients may want to know mostly what might be considered practical considerations such as if they are likely to be rich or no, receive an inheritance, whether they will have children and if so how many, when or if ever they will be married, what kind of profession or career they are best suited for, etc. These types of questions were the common sort of stock before astrology was reborn in the 20th century. Many astrologers today neglect to address such concerns and want to only focus on one dimension, such as the psychological or the, dare I say, reincarnational types of astrology (a branch I am highly skeptical of). However I am of the opinion that because it is the astrologer's duty to serve his/her clients as effectively as possible a good astrologer should be capable of interpreting the birth chart at several different levels. The more "real world" questions listed as examples above, and the predictions made by the astrologer concerning them, can in fact be very useful to the client on both psychological and spiritual levels because they provide a more practical means to approach life. For example if the chart reveals that the person is very unlikely to bear children then this piece of information, while perhaps difficult to hear for someone aspiring to procreate, can allow them to approach their existence without the expectation or the fantasy of having children thus eliminating an unnecessary distraction in their life. However please note that nothing is rigidly predetermined by the birth chart and everything is subject to the influences of greater levels of consicousness (again some would say the "Will of God") and thus should the person one day bear a child then such a situation would be a great blessing. 
Now there may be those people who are more interested to look at the chart for guidance in terms of their spiritual life. This is probably where we find the greatest value in astrology. We must ever remember that the spiritual dimension always includes the more mundane or exoteric dimension and thus a person's spiritual development cannot be seen separately from the rest of their life (their spouse, their friends, their enemies, their money, their career, etc.). In an interpetation focusing on the spiritual dimension it is natural that we also want to bring in elements of psychology and esoteric philosophy. The chart cannot really reveal to a person information that will bring them enlightenment. Instead it should be seen as a road map to life and, in this context to, faith. The goal of this kind of interpetation would be to identify the person's strengths and weaknesses as he/she treads the conscious way and to help them discover what kinds of teachers and philosophies or practices will have most meaning for them. We also want to identify key moments in the past so we can understand how they fit into the greater cycle of the client's life and conscious development. If possible we should see if we can find the time period in which an awakening occured (very often this is some radical crisis that pushes the individual into a new mode of thinking and acting), and identify future time periods wherein the client may encounter certain opportunities for growth.
If astrology is to have any practicality at all then a birth chart should not be read without some guidelines given to the astrologer by the client. "Tell me about myself" is not the purpose of a reading, specific concerns and questions need to be asked in order that it can be not only practical but also meaningful. In many situations horary astrology is sufficient, but when we need to look deeper into the whole life of the person then natal becomes necessary.
Lars Panaro
© 2017 Lars Panaro
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