I like what Derek and Julia Parker have to say in one of my favorite books, The Compleat Astrologer.
Astrology has always served to enlarge our understanding. Changes have been made in recent years that promise to have a major effect on the progress of astrology; the new directions it can be expected to take, and the attitudes people are likely to adopt towards it.
These changes are mysterious and illuminating. Progressive astrologers, attempting to relate astrology to a science-oriented society are working with hardheaded scientists. Looking at other points of view, common ground has been discovered in the field of biological rhythms and cycles, enough to show that astrologers and scientists are becoming very compatible.
The age of Aquarius holds a new fascination for the younger generation in search of meaning, although astrology is for people of all ages and generations. It knows no cultural or age differences. Astrological truths are for all of us and hold us all together as a human family.
But is astrology true? You must discover this for yourself. No one can be persuaded simply by being told about it. You have to choose to learn more about it. To understand the influence of the heavenly bodies on mankind, we must understand the science behind astrology and the techniques of its art. Astrologers honor and respect the truths of past masters. We want to cast a deeper, clearer light on human life.
A star was the ancient Sumerian symbol for divinity. The stars provided a very impressive background to the interaction of other celestial bodies. Today we are naturally aware that the sun and moon exert a strong physical influence on our lives. Back then, the Sun kept people warm and faded in the winter; day alternated with night, the sea rose and fell with the tides. These were mysterious processes of growth and decay, and the ebb and flow of the natural order helped provide a physical explanation of the universe.
From the viewpoint of earth, the stars turn around us in the pattern that is virtually unchanging from one year to the next. The shifts that constantly occur were so slight that they were hardly noticed by the earliest observers. The seven major bodies were noticed because of their rapid movement against the starry background of sky. Early observers noticed the Sun, Moon, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. In Babylonian times there are stories written about the planets, sun and moon representing gods with the power to direct or intervene in life, each one being allocated power over an area of human experience.
For example, Mercury was seen as a quick, cunning and wise god. Mars was the ruler of violence and war; Jupiter was a benevolent king-like ruler of men; Saturn was seen as a distant cooling sun in exile; quick-tempered and cruel. Gradually, as these associations gained in authority, they were joined together to form the basis of astrological lore.