I am in the process of writing an astrological natal horoscope for my newest family member, L’il Cuz (LC for short). He was born in November, a Scorpio like his daddy, and his daddy’s daddy, too. In the words of The Electronic Astrologer, Maritha Pottenger, a natal portrait is:
… a map of the sky for your instant of birth, looking from the viewpoint of your birthplace. Your moment of birth gives a “freeze frame” — an exact snapshot of the positions of all the planets. No one else has the same horoscope as you — unless they were born in the exact same place, at the exact same minute, as you were.
Writing natal horoscopes is another one of my strange hobbies, along with blogging, reading Tarot cards, and my crystal ball collection. Like the others, no true “magic” occurs. As far as astrology goes, someone very human (and probably terrified) “made up” the “astrological” context for each planet and their places in the heavens — assigned meaning to the meaningless, and wrote it down. We’ve been passing on these arbitrary assignations for thousands of years.
The majority of the reports I give to my friends and family are automatically generated by a nifty piece of software I bought in the mid 1990’s that (astonishingly) still functions on my current PC. Its author, Ms. Pottenger, did (does?) not share my standard for grammar and proofreading so I refuse to simply copy and paste her verbiage, but as for the content, I do not write those parts, I merely proofread them. Other portions of this report I will derive from multiple sources. (I include a full list of credits at the back.) But the writing is mine.
I’ve written many natal portraits for adult friends, but I enjoy them more when I write them for newborns. A newborn’s life, as yet unlived, hasn’t conformed (or failed to conform) to any preconception that was written in the stars and transcribed in my sources. If, in fifteen years, L’il Cuz’s personality perfectly matches the 55+ page report’s description of his temperament, his strengths and weaknesses, and his romantic compatibility, I cannot be accused of shaping the outcome of this report based on what I already know. (If his personality doesn’t match, I always have charlatanism as an excuse.)
My bff gifted me with my own astrological natal portrait when we were both in our mid-twenties; she knew a service that charged a reasonable fee, and she felt strongly about having mine drawn. She presented it as a birthday gift, and I still have it. While I only agreed with about 1/3 of it the first time I read it, I re-read it not long ago, and now I find most of it to be spot on. The longer we live, the more complex we become. The more complex we become, the more easily the arrow shot wide at us finds a mark with which to connect.
But for the unlived, much less unexamined life, the potential qualities conjured by a natal horoscope are both beautiful and frightening. Like any Tarot card, a horoscope is a mere list of words, ideas, and symbols. Apply them as you contemplate the daily mysteries of your own life; you may gain insight, you may achieve a new perspective. Will it change your life? No, silly, of course not. Only you can do that.
LC’s natal portrait, the picture of my L’il Cuz, as painted by the zodiac and written in the stars, is a fun one. My Cuz (the proud father of L’il Cuz) captured a lovely picture of LC the moment he opened his eyes, looked out on the new, colder, less aquatic world, and saw his daddy’s camera staring back at him. Cuz’s dad (Papa Lou) has a similar picture that he took so many years ago — proud papas, both eager to capture every expression, every yawn — wary sons, both with the classic expression of, “Oh Dad, not again!”
No matter what is written in the stars, LC has so much ahead of him. Will that Moon in the House of Friends & Hopes & Wishes truly mean that:
his family may breed in him individualism, change, open-endedness and unusual approaches?
It’s hard to tell. We share DNA, and, well, that trait is in me. I’m a Pisces, 47 years older. So was it written in the stars or the DNA? Or does it actually — and truly — remain untranscribed until LC writes the story for himself?
If, at the time of his birth, because the Sun makes a challenging aspect to Neptune, will LC really be “inspired, swept away by passionate experiences (and have the capacity to touch the hearts and souls of others)?” Is he truly (and I hope so) likely to have charisma and a native, whimsical charm along with marked creative capabilities? Will I love him less if the stars are stupid? Never. L’il Cuz and I have not yet met, and I love him fiercely.
May the stars shine over him, blessings each bright light, all the days of his life.