An astrologer racks her brain cell….

As part of the process of promoting “Jupiter meets Uranus”, I have been doing some interviews. This one was particular fun to do, since Wendy of that excellent site The Know It All Astrologer sent me a list of questions which I was not expecting at all! The unexpected, of course, is useful for jolting one’s remaining brain cell into something approaching dynamic action….


Interview between The Know It All Astrologer and Scottish astrologer Anne Whitaker


Anne W
Anne W

What transit always shows up for you in surprising ways?

They all do, especially the long-lasting ones. The deep challenges that force our growth lurk in the realms of the unconscious, just waiting to hitch a ride on the nearest really tough transit. For example, I didn’t think that ten years of Neptune transits was going to involve an enforced descent into the Underworld for most of that period! However, the good news is that I have now emerged, much improved (unless you ask my husband….!) with enough notes to keep me writing for a further ten years.

What is your funniest transit or retrograde experience?

There are several, not all of which can be aired publicly! The one which comes immediately to mind is the occasion, in March 1985, when Saturn turned retrograde on my 28 Scorpio IC. In the middle of lunch with an old friend who at that time was a bank manager, without warning, I passed out. Just then, a friend of his, who was also a bank manager, was passing by the restaurant window. I came round and insisted on going home – very groggily, with a bank manager holding me up by each arm. Very Saturn in Scorpio, don’t you think?!

Would you rather be ruled by Uranus or Jupiter? Why?

What a question! Both those planets are strong in my horoscope, Uranus in the tenth house leading an eastern bowl shape, with Jupiter in the third closing the bowl, and the two in bi-quintile aspect. My Ascendant is also on the Jupiter/Uranus midpoint. However, if forced to choose I would go for Jupiter, provided the aspects weren’t too difficult. My reasons are probably dictated by the stage I’ve got to in life: that disruptive, eccentric, unpredictable, stubborn individualism characteristic of a Uranus-ruled life feels too tiring to contemplate now!

Jupiter’s boundless energy and optimism, ability to inspire others and be inspired by the more positive dimensions of  life, and willingness to be open to a sense of meaningful connectedness to that which is greater than oneself, are especially attractive to me at this point.

What advice would you give to someone learning how to read their own chart?

One, there are dozens of ways of evading personal responsibility – resolve at the outset never to do so by blaming your horoscope or your transits for your difficulties in life.

Two, realise that objectivity is something to be aspired to, which can never be achieved by mere human beings. This being the case, try to recognise that you can be most objective and therefore most helpful by reading the horoscopes of strangers, provided you have appropriate training and supervision. When approaching your own horoscope, or those of your loved ones, you will inevitably colour the planetary picture before you with your own hopes and fears.

Three, the illuminating light which is gradually cast as your understanding of  the symbols in your chart grows, will be wonderfully helpful in shedding light on your gifts, pains, motivations and aspirations. But bear in mind that possessing astrological knowledge has a shadow side – for example, I have never known anyone including myself who didn’t look at upcoming transits, especially of Saturn and Pluto, without a certain amount of fear. To help my astrology students with this,  I used to point out that 99.9% of the human race from the beginning of time has managed to stagger through life without the aid of astrology! So – enjoy the fascination of  deciphering the astrological map of your life. But don’t get too precious about it – and be aware that this wonderful knowledge has a double edge….

What astrology books do you re-read or use the most?

The two astrologers who have most inspired and educated me have been Liz Greene and the late Charles Harvey, with both of whom I was fortunate to study – unofficially from the mid-1980s and formally between 1995 and 1998. As reference books for my interest in mundane astrology, my three favourites are: The outer planets and their Cycles by Liz Greene,  Anima Mundi – the astrology of the individual and the collective by Charles Harvey, and Mundane Astrology by Michael Baigent, Nicholas Campion and Charles Harvey.

My copy of Stephen Arroyo’s Astrology, Karma and Transformation , that wonderful in-depth companion on the ‘stormy journey of the soul’ is now so well-thumbed that it is starting to fall to bits – and when I feel like some outrageous, light-hearted, funny, but deadly accurate astrological analysis I turn to Debbi Kempton-Smith’s Secrets from a stargazer’s notebook.


Anne Whitaker has been an astrologer since the 1983 Jupiter-Uranus conjunction in Sagittarius. She also has a long background in adult education, social work, counselling and supervision. Anne holds the Diploma from the Centre for Psychological Astrology where she studied with Liz Greene and Charles Harvey (1995-98 London, UK), an MA degree, and postgraduate diplomas in education and social work. Based in Glasgow in Scotland, she is now focusing on writing, and on running “Writing from the Twelfth House” which has just been included in the prestigious and prolific USA astrology blogger Jude Cowell’s Top 10 Astrology Blogs 2009.

(permission to re-publish this interview, first posted on 18 June 2009, has been given by The Know It All Astrologer)

900 words copyright Anne Whitaker 2009

Licensed under Creative Commons – for conditions see Home Page

5 thoughts on “An astrologer racks her brain cell….

  1. Wonderful Interview!

    I especially appreciated this answer:

    “…resolve at the outset never to do so by blaming your horoscope or your transits for your difficulties in life.”

    Thanks so much, Alexander – your comment as always much appreciated. I see our paths are now crossing at Astroluxx as well! Anne

  2. Anne,

    My goodness! How things have grown and spread here! I know so little of astrology I might as well be reading Urdu in some cases, but it’s still inviting and non-pretentious writing, as good as an engraved invitation to learn more.

    I found an entry I’d missed, from 2005, about the cutting of the tree. It’s well-written and even more apropos today, when it’s not only trees that are being cut down but whole communities that are being undercut by arrogant and self-serving bureaucracies.

    Best wishes for the book!

    Linda – EXACTLY as you were writing your comment, I was emailing you! And asking you what you thought of the tree article – thanks for what you say. I think many of us are angry about self-serving bureaucracies, whatever nation we live in these days. Thanks for the visit! And some day you should sign up to learn astrology – I think you’d love its deep perspectives – way beyond the Sun Sign columns…Anne

  3. Hello Anne, just a quick note to say that I enjoyed the interview and definitely approve of your choice of books! 🙂

    Thanks Susannah! Mutual approval society re our book choices is now born…..! Anne

  4. What a wonderful interview, Anne and Wendy.

    My own 10th h Uranus esp appreciates your view of maturity preferring a more restful life out from under Uranian rays – now how may I establish that, if you please? ;p

    Zeeks! Just noticed you added a link for me at end – thank you so much, Anne. Jude

    Hi Jude

    great to have such positive feedback, which I’ll pass on to Wendy. When I’ve worked out how to combine a dominant 1oth H Uranus with a peaceful life, you’ll be first on the list for the recipe…..! Anne

  5. Gawd, nearly missed this as well – this site is so full of juicy wee titbits that I’m afraid to miss anything and it’s freaking my Virgo ascendant out!
    Lots of love,
    Haven’t you noticed yet that freaking out your Virgo ascendant is one of my life’s small but significant pleasures? See you soon! A xx

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