When we are looking up to experts we follow or just hearing a friend share their astrological knowledge, we can hear the question, “How did they learn all that?!” enter our minds! In my path, I’ve used books to get a basic knowledge so then I could start really working and forming associations with my own chart—and later would start working with others’ charts! Whether you want to know how to utilize and work with your personal natal chart or eventually want to work with others’, here are some books that have been and continue to be defining in my work with astrology! These are perfect if you are wanting to build a solid foundation or looking for alternative perspectives or additional knowledge if you consider yourself an expert!
1. ASTROLOGY AND STORYTELLING BY ALICE SPARKLY KAT
I wish this was one of the first astrological books I had read! In this workbook, Alice Sparkly Kat provides a stunning, thought-provoking analysis about the implications of Western astrology being the predominant form of astrology. This book explores and redefines the zodiac signs in a way that applies to a modern, capitalistic society. It examines the intersection of astrology, our culture, and our biology in a way that will be deeply informative for the beginner, redefining for the intermediate practitioners, and create a paradigm shift for the expert.
The book is also a workbook! Designed to help you explore and write about your natal chart as a work of fiction, this book helps you create associations with your chart in a way that is usable and workable for you and by you. It can be used personally or in a group!
This is not your cut and dry astrology book of yore, but is intersectional, blunt, and has a critical, insightful take on astrology. I really could not recommend this text more whether you are a beginner or have been a professional astrologer for 20 years. It created a huge paradigm shift in how I consider zodiacal energies and components of my chart, and the importance of being a teacher in reading the charts of others versus a mystic that imposes definitions of someone’s being in a top-down strategy. she also has a new workbook that just came out that provides exercises, meditations, written exercises that follow planetary events and cycles. it also “frames mental health issues as social issues, because depression, paranoia, and anxiety are public feelings.”
2. THE ASTROLOGY OF SELF-DISCOVERY BY TRACY MARKS
This was the book that introduced me to the power of transits and how astrology is a living, breathing practice. In this book, Marks provides guidance for achieving self-development and accessing our potential through finding attunement and alignment to planetary influences. Like many more “modern” astrology books, Marks does not see astrology has being fatalistic, but every transit and placement as an opportunity to explore ourselves, our attitudes, thought-processes, and ways of navigating life. She shows how understanding astrology and the transits affecting us can provide a means of guidance in navigating through life.
I personally love how the book is structured as it starts with our moon signs and the importance of exploring and reconciling with our inner child, plus she devotes a great deal of time to the longer-term, outer planetary transits. I particularly loved how when she presents transits that are affecting her chart, whereas I may not have had an immediate association with the implication or “meaning” of that transit, she provides illustrative examples of how it affected her life. This really opened my eyes to how planetary forces influences our lives and made me really consider how I could start aligning myself with longer term transits in my life. Plus, she does an excellent job discussing how transits aren’t events we need to cower in fear over or dread, but are invitations to consider different aspects and dimensions of ourselves and ways of moving through life.
This book provided a sense of freshness, realness, and liveliness to my view and practice of astrology and I highly recommend this book for folks who want to take their understanding of astrology beyond their natal chart and understand it as a dynamic, every day discipline.
3. ASTROLOGY, KARMA & TRANSFORMATION BY STEPHEN ARROYO
i will fully admit that i am still in the process of reading this book, but aside from the information that arroyo has presented, i particularly love the angle he approaches astrology and its use. this angle would be moving away from predictive astrology more towards utilizing it as a tool for spiritual and psychological growth and development. i greatly appreciate how he encourages the process of reading someone else’s chart to be a conversation—much like what is illustrated and discussed in alice sparkly kat’s book—rather than natal chart readings as a display of prowess over being able to draw stunning, dogmatic conclusions from someone’s chart.
while the language of this book is centered around being an astrologer providing readings for others, i think anyone of any skill level would find this to be an enriching read. plus, i think it lays a wonderful groundwork for being a teacher and guide in delivering readings for others rather than drawing strict, dogmatic conclusions, if you were to ever decide to start offering astrological readings for others! these principles are even important to consider if you are just sharing information with your friends or have the privilege to look at their chart.
otherwise, this book provides wonderful insight and a great perspective on astrological topics such as karma & relationships, progressions, transits, the meaning of the Ascendant & its ruler, a positive approach to Saturn, and an in-depth look at pluto. this is an excellent book if you are looking explore your chart through the lens of self-development and understanding the karma of your chart.
4. ASTROLOGY FOR YOURSELF BY DEMETRA GEORGE & DOUGLAS BLOCH
this is a book that i have just decided to purchase and work with! while there are numerous books out there that are styled more as “textbooks” and provide definitive meanings of your astrological placements, my focus and interest—even in providing astrological insight to others—has rested in helping other create their own meanings and associations with their chart and overall spiritual practice! astrology has provided such a rich language and system for me to understand myself, chart a path towards my development, and particularly endure difficulty and turmoil in my life.
this book is a workbook that is designed to introduce you to and guide you through the language, art, and science of astrology, while also providing exercises to allow you to write your own chart interpretations! i promise that engaging in the activity of interpreting your own chart and creating your own associations is a powerful practice that will bring great meaning and depth to your life, understanding of yourself, and in laying a foundation to your astrological practice!
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE BOOKS?
See a favorite of yours on this list or have a book you’ve want to be included? Feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM me on Instagram! Otherwise I hope this provides some enriching resources as you learn more about astrology!