Manly P. Hall haled from Toronto and had a depth of knowledge which I can only envy. He has a bead on exactly what our society's problem is and how we as individuals can still reach our potential. Worth a listen even though it is long.
One of the more lifelong useful courses I ever took while at the university was not a university course at all. It was a course i took in Kabbalah. Ancient wisdom about how to live and how to better understand, appreciate, work with the human "condition" and transcend the ego, among many other things, Kabbalah, when I have used it, has been extremely helpful. Kabbalah, which is a universal understanding transcending ordinary religion, can be seen as the spring from which religion sprang. Kabbalah presupposes that you take responsibility for yourself and work on your own consciousness. Religion does not. Religion is what happened to man as he "fell" in consciousness and no longer wanted to know or be responsible for his choices in creating his own existence. I am not dissing religion per se - if that is what you want and is right for you in the moment, so be it. We are all moving along a continuum. However, in some sense modern religion can be seen as an escape from responsibility. If you can go out and be less than heartful toward others and then come and get absolution without any form of restauration or true change of heart or behaviour, what is up with that? Or put it this way, even though Christ clearly taught that love was all and we were not to judge, some of the most judgmental of all are religious adherents. Kabbalah is another post or several, since it is a vast repository of understanding. Here I actually wanted to speak in general to astrology.
Astrology is a branch of understanding which is also ancient. There are many permutations of astrology - Egyptian, Indian, etc. It is based on the Kabbalah as well as the realization that the heavenly bodies - planets and luminaries (sun, moon) - exert an influence on us. The astrological chart, which is based on the whereabouts of the planets at the time and day and place of birth, helps to give a blueprint of the energy and traits which the new incarnate brings to this plane. It is not the extent of the person's possibilities but rather it is a starting point. The sun (day of birth) being that force which is most abundantly available to the person. The ascendant (hour of birth) being how she is seen by others. The moon is the past life carry-over on the emotional level , the unconscious patterning if you will. Mercury is the mode of communication, learning, travel, etc. Mars is the energy, or in a woman's chart the type of man she finds attractive. Venus is the love nature or in a man's chart the type of woman he finds attractive. Jupiter is the fortune or the expansion in life. Saturn is the lesson in life. Uranus is disruption. Neptune is the higher love nature, devotion, and more. There is then Pluto/Chiron and a few other factors, which I will leave for another time.
Like a wheel within a wheel these zodiac signs at the time of the birth, headed up by the ascendant are set into the houses, one to twelve. One is the personality, two the money or earning, three is communication, four is the home and family, five is the fun, amusements, love affairs (short-lived), six is health, seven is marriage/partnerships, eight is legacies, nine is philosophy, ten is the career, eleven is friendships, associations, and twelve is the subconscious or hidden matters. There are different patterns or groupings of planets possible. It is not a simple matter to interpret a horoscope and yet it gives insight into the person, which is most valuable.
Two years ago, I had a professional astrologer, The Queen of Cups, as she calls herself, do a reading on my chart and it was quite amazing. Even though I am very familiar with my chart another person's perspective is quite interesting, since we can be either overly optimistic or pessimistic with ourselves. Be sure to not just skim the surface of this subject. Water from the deeper well is clarifying and gives wisdom!