In Shamanic Astrology, we see the Birth Chart as a Mandala, drawing all elements of Life and Psyche toward the Center. The Center is the Temple we find ourselves in when we meditate on the Chart.
The Mandala reminds us also of the Journey around the Circle, which is where the Experience and Explorations occur. Without such creative activity, there could be little to draw towards the Center.
So the Mandala is a mystical symbol of the Philosophy of Going Out and Returning, and the Wheel is not, therefore, a burden, but a gift.
The Circle and the Cross
The birth chart is divided horizontally by the equator or Ascendant-Descendant Axis, and vertically by the Midheaven-Nadir Axis. These divisions make it that most ancient of symbols – the Circle enclosing a Cross which divides it into the four sacred quadrants.
The cross inside a circle is said to symbolize the Self (as Ego and Personality) in the crucible of matter, time and space, journeying through the mystical cycles of life, death and rebirth. The Soul – in the form of the Higher Self, stands at the Centre of the Mandala, exchanging energy with the Ego/Self as it moves through the four quadrants.
As the Wheel turns, the Higher Self distills and integrates the fruits of each phase through which the Ego passes. This whole process is enfolded within an even larger version of the Higher Self – the Soul. Thus as it moves through life experience, the Ego receives sustenance and illumination from the Higher Self which, in turn, is the point of Light emanating from the Soul.
What follows is a delineation of the twelve houses and their life themes understood through the lens of a planet and the Sign it is said to “rule”…