1. Tanya, why do you believe in astrology?
I don't believe in astrology - it is not a religion, or system of faith. But I have both studied, and practised, the subject for 25 years...and have continued to find astrology to be a useful, rewarding and valuable tool for self-awareness and understanding. The accuracy of my work is not confirmed by myself...but from feedback from my clients.
2. If astrology as we know it has survived for such a long period, why? Is it because we have a need to understand and predict our behaviour, or is it because it rings a genuine truth?
Probably a combination of both. We, as humans, tend to feel uneasy about our uncertainties and the contradictions in our make-up, and an accurate birthchart and analysis can go some way towards increasing our understanding of ourselves and why we might appear so multifaceted.
3. It may be argued astrology is unethical because it dispels us of the responsibility for our own behaviour. For example, a person could commit a crime and blame its occurrence on the chance alignment of the stars.
No one should be allowed diminished responsibilities for their own decisions. Life is a learning experience, and despite our "given lot" it's up to each of us to operate in as much of a spiritually informed manner as we can. Despite some grey areas, there is a generally accepted demarcation line between right and wrong, which we alone choose to knowingly cross. Astrology does not hold your fate is its hands - it"s meant to be used as a guide or map to help increase self-awareness along your individual path in life. Screaming "victim" to the astrological blueprint is therefore unacceptable. At best, we can acknowledge our predicaments, but we can't blame them. Every one of us holds the ultimate responsibility for our own life.
4. What do you see as the most important influence in a birthchart?
The interpretation of a birthchart must take into consideration the planetary positions in signs, houses, their aspects, the Ascendant, Midheaven, elements, quadruplicities, etc etc. It's like putting together a jigsaw puzzle - with each piece of the chart being interlinked. Some influences are likely to be stronger, others weaker - but they all rely on each other to complete the total picture.
5. With such a multitude of influences from the planets, sun, moon, rising sign, conjunctions and so on, what room does astrology make for environmental, cultural and genetic influences?
Maybe it's time we all conceded that there is more than one contributing factor to our make-up and circumstances. It seems to me that to attribute absolutely everything to one single truth is a limited line of thinking that is possibly erroneous in its dismissal of everything else that is involved.
6. Tanya, have you ever had doubts in astrology?
I don't believe that anything in life should be accepted on faith alone. Therefore the best way to deal with any doubts that arise is to test theories, research, ask questions...and then take the necessary amount of time required to find comprehensive answers to those questions. Kahlil Gibran said, ¨He who does not seek advice is a fool. His folly blinds him to the Truth and makes him evil, stubborn, and a danger to his fellow man."
7. In a general sense why do you think people choose to doubt it?
The following quote seems to say it all:
¨There is a principle which is bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments, which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance; that principle is contempt, prior to investigation.' Herbert Spencer
8. Tanya, being a Sun sign columnist do you believe it's accurate to place so much emphasis on the sun sign which ignores the multitude of other influences within a horoscope.
It's true that there is much more in a personal chart than just the Sun sign, but when writing for magazines and papers you have to write within workable parameters. For a start, you're writing for the general reader, so you have to go on the broad categories that Sun Signs cover. Beyond that you would have to have each individual's time, date and place of birth - which would make the whole operation of a column impossible.
The point, though, is that there is enough interest to warrant Astrology columns. The information given in these columns is astrology on an introductory level, pitched at the casual lay reader who may want to investigate further with a personal birthchart. Where possible, I offer the option of this more in-depth service through an accompanying advertisement. It's then up to the reader if they want to know more.