Start Your Journey To Self-Discovery Among the Stars By Plotting Your Birth Chart Today
You probably already know your zodiac sign, even if you aren’t very interested in western astrology. I think it’s safe to assume that nearly everyone has clicked on “free horoscope” at least once.
But did you know that your birth chart contains additional insight that reaches beyond the cliche life lessons crammed in sun sign horoscopes?
What is a natal chart?
An astrological chart is a snapshot of the heavens at the moment of your birth that focuses on the position of the planets as viewed from your birthplace. The line that stretches across the width of the chart represents the horizon (labeled AC for ascendant and DC for descendant).
Astrologers believe that the birth chart represents the most subconscious & constant driving forces in an individual’s life – the underlying foundational components of their personality. Many believe this chart is a spiritual tool which holds the secrets to an individual’s past lives, karmic history, & future.
According to Sara Coughlin’s interview with astrologer Janelle Belgrave, a natal chart contains all sorts of clue to an individual’s “personality, drives, fears, parental relationships, siblings, children, psychological patterns, and more.”
Your birth chart is more unique and individual than your birth date alone!
Aside from your zodiac sign (what astrologers call your sun sign), you also have a moon sign and a rising sign. Your sun, moon, and rising (or ascendant) signs make up what western astrology recognizes as The Big Three.
The placements of the planets Mars, Venus, Jupiter, Uranus, Neptune, Saturn, and Pluto all traditionally have individual and collective impacts on a chart too.
It might sound overwhelming at first, but generating your birth chart is easy with modern technology.
Be sure to print or screenshot your chart and keep it handy for the next time you run across an astrology book or article.
Follow these steps to plot your personal natal chart!
To get started generating your natal chart, you’ll need three things:
- Date of birth (day, month, and year)
- The name of the city or town where you were born
- Your exact birth time if at all possible (in local time; the computer will calculate daylight savings time and time zones)
Once you have your exact birth time, date, and place, follow the instructions below for drawing up your chart!
A Note About Birth Times and Locations
The location you were born and the exact time of your birth are both necessary to generate the most accurate natal chart possible. Because various planets and points sometimes change zodiac signs at rapid speeds, absent birth information or an inaccurate date and time entry may lead to incorrect chart placements.
Being just four minutes off can change placements by entire degrees and distort the calculations necessary for most house systems. This means that having the wrong birth time could result in you reading for unreliable placements you may not actually have.
Chart aspect patterns (grand trines, t-crosses, cradles, etc.) and planetary aspects (squares, oppositions, conjunctions, etc.) should also be considered unreliable unless the natal chart is generated using an exact time.
- Now that you have your birth date, birth place, and birth time, head on over to astro.com.
- Click Free Horoscopes on the top menu bar.
- You will be routed to a page with options for horoscopes, forecasts, and reports. Click Extended Chart Selection underneath the Horoscope Chart Drawings section.
- In the Guest box (the first option), click the Data Entry link. Read the data privacy popup and click the checkbox if you agree to the terms.
- You should be at a form labeled Birth Data Entry. Enter your information including your name and gender (does not affect chart), birthday/date, birth time, country, and birth town/city. When you enter your birth town, you’ll need to wait for a drop-down list to appear so you can select the correct city from there. Otherwise, you’ll get an error.
- Click continue. (You don’t need to worry about Extended Settings unless you need to manually set the time zone (very unlikely).
You should be at a confusing looking screen with a bunch of different options. You’re free to play around with these options, but I’ll help you generate what I consider the easiest chart format/layout to start with.
Ignore the partner setting. It won’t do anything with the options I’m having you select. Also leave the chart type, chart drawing style, and start date options as the default.
7. Scroll down until the third blue header which says Display and calculation options. Make sure this box is expanded.
8. Select Chiron off in the second column Traditional astrology options and select only major aspects (0,180,90,120,60°) in the third column Aspects. Your selections should look like the image above.
9. Click the Click here to show the chart button.
You should now be looking at your very own personal western astrology natal/birth chart. Groovy.
Make sure you screenshot or print your chart so you don’t have to go through this whole process again later!
It’s also a good idea to click the PDF Additional tables button and to screenshot or print this too as it offers a different format and additional information.
If you’d like to create a free account on Astrodienst where you can generate and save dozens of charts (highly recommended), click on MyAstro in the top left and follow their steps for account creation.
Now that you have your birth chart, you can get started interpreting how placements signify certain aspects of your life and fortune!
If for some reason you find yourself lost reading these instructions, you can also watch this YouTube video for help generating your chart on Astrodienst.
Try generating your chart on some of these sites as well!
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