How it all began

One day when I was twelve I discovered my birth certificate among some papers in my mother’s closet.  For some reason, my eyes went immediately to my time of birth and I memorized it: 1:12 p.m.  That was my first encounter with astrology.

My next encounter took place during a time of crisis in my mid-twenties.  At  the advice of a friend, I ordered my first natal chart analysis.  Filling out the order form was easy because I had known my birth time for years!

The report was computer generated.  Some parts rang true, other not as much, and the pieces didn't fit together well.  Nevertheless, I knew I had stumbled upon something great.

A few years later I had my chart 'read' by a coworker who had trained at the Faculty of Astrological Studies in London.  The spark of interest became a fire, and I knew I had to study for myself.  My friend recommended several books to get me started. I read those, then many more.  I studied my own chart over time.  I started analyzing charts for family and friends.

I loved astrology, but it took me hours to prepare a natal reading.  I used the typical ‘cookbook’ approach, relying heavily upon reference material.  Although my readings were generally well received, the process was too cumbersome.  When it came right down to it I didn't really know what I was doing, even after years of study!


The problem

Modern astrology encompasses a wide swath of techniques.  The student faces an array of confusing choices: which zodiac to use, and why?  Which of a dozen house systems to choose for dividing up the sky?  How many aspects to consider?  What about Chiron, asteroids, and 'transneptunian objects'?  And—most importantly—what does all of this stuff actually mean?

I wondered how such disparate approaches could all claim to be valid.  It made no sense to me.  There had to be a better way.


The breakthrough

One summer’s day while my daughter frolicked in the local wading pool, I read an article in The Mountain Astrologer interviewing John Frawley.*  The article mentioned horary astrology, something I had never heard of.  Horary wasn’t natal, but it utilized a clear methodology that produced reliable results.  Perhaps this was the method I was seeking!

Inspired, I enrolled in Mr. Frawley’s horary apprenticeship.  I soon realized that I had struck gold.  In early 2005 I emerged as a Horary Craftsman. Aware that horary was just the beginning, I dreamed of enrolling in the natal apprenticeship.  The time finally arrived, and in June of 2010 I began my natal studies.


The culmination

I completed my natal apprenticeship on June 6, 2012, a day made doubly special by the rare Venus transit of the Sun.  A few weeks later I received my diploma from the Master himself during his lectures in Chicago.

I am forever thankful to John Frawley for his excellent teaching and his warm support of my development as an astrologer.

*Plumb, M. (2003). Astrology as a Sacred Science: a Conversation with John Frawley. The Mountain Astrologer, Aug./Sept. 2003, 82–89.