The Personal Planets

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In This Chapter

^ Contemplating the personal planets in astronomy, mythology, and astrology ^ Understanding the planets in the signs

^ Interpreting Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn in your chart

7he Sun and the Moon carry masses of information. All by themselves, they provide a skeleton key to your psyche. But to fully grasp the complexity of your own horoscope, you need to include the planets.

To ancient astrologers, that meant noting the positions of Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn — the only planets visible from Earth. For thousands of years, stargazers assumed that there were no other planets. Then, in 1781, an amateur astronomer in England discovered another planet, and the race was on. Today, astronomers argue over how many planets there are in the solar system. Some claim there are only eight. Others insist there are 23 — and counting. The answer depends entirely on whom you ask.

Astrologers regard those five planets, the ones you can see for yourself in the night sky (and sometimes during the day), as the ones with the most immediate impact on the individual. That's why Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn are known as the personal planets. The outer planets, which aren't visible without a telescope, are less personality-driven and more generational in their effects (with exceptions that I note in Chapter 10).

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