Art of Combination

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Combing several Horoscope Factors is not simple

The assessment of the various horoscope factors and their interrelations, in other words, the process of horoscope interpretation. The most important maxim is that the total is always greater than the sum of its parts.

The first step is to consider the relationship between following factors:

In the case of the slower moving planets Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto, the house position is considered to be more important than the sign because it is the more individual of the two factors. Many people - not only those born in the same year but in some cases a whole generation - have these planets in the same sign of the zodiac. Their aspects and house positions therefore reveal more about their individual colouring.

A further step is then

  • a compilation of recurring themes.

The Astrological Alphabet (of Zipporah Dobyns) can be a source of help in this respect. For example, Mars in the tenth house (= Mars-Saturn) and Saturn in Aries (= Saturn-Mars) both express related themes. If a variety of different horoscope factors express a similar theme, its influence will be strengthened. Competing themes may end up moderating or to a certain extent canceling each other out.

A deeper penetration into the inner workings of the horoscope is possible by working with the rulers.

These can either be house rulers or sign rulers. By taking into account the rulers, it is possible to uncover connections between houses, planets and signs as well as between individual planets.

The art of combination begins with small steps - even the simple observation that the Sun is in Gemini is one step in the process of assessing the multitude of horoscope factors and the relationships between them. This process, which is initially often confusing and daunting, becomes easier with practice and is essential for being able to assess the importance of factors both on their own and in combination with others.

The art of combination requires both a logical method and intuition. For example, when interpreting an aspect pattern the aspects must be calculated but the pattern itself is understood intuitively.



  • Ebertin, Reinhold, 1972, The Combination of Stellar Influences, American Federation of Astrologers