If you’re looking for a no-frills introduction to astrology, you’ve come to the right place. But this book isn’t just the theory; Bruce Scofield brings a wide-angle-lens approach to this rich and diverse subject, so that by the end of the book you will have a good grounding in a variety of astrological techniques and be able to interpret your own chart to a reasonable level; you will also have benefited from a mountain-top view, overlooking astrology’s fascinating and complicated past, and gain insight into how the different branches of the art developed and the battles with religion that ensued as they did so. For those who want to push further into the number-crunching a detailed Appendix teaches chart calculation from the ground up.
What Astrology Is and How to Use it was previously published by One Reed Publications as User’s Guide to Astrology, but we figured it’s so good we wanted to bring it into Wessex. Enjoy. You might also like Astrological Chart Calculations, which will teach you how to calculate a chart from absolute scratch.
A frequent social media question thrown at me is, ‘Can you recommend a book that introduces astrology? – something I can understand!’. There are in fact quite a few useful titles out there. But Bruce Scofield’s book is in a class of its own and should be recommended to any friend or loved one suddenly interested in studying horoscope.
His Foreword starts on a bleak note. Astrology we are told is not fashionable. Religions forbid it (my local vicar takes a more moderate view…) and scientists have no place for a reality that cannot be weighed and measured by lab geeks. This is all true. But never say never. The lucrative success of astrology apps, for instance, is one example of just how popular astrology is – at Sun sign level, at least.
Scofield proceeds to give an excellent tour d’horizon of astrology, addressing such themes as its place in relation to science and religion, and the different traditions and techniques. A succinct history is followed by exposition of the horoscope, its symbolic furniture (e.g., planets and points) and all the rest including chart sectors and forecasting by transits.
Most welcome is the chapter ‘Astrology Software’. Even now many astro-writers eschew computers in their ruminations when it would be hard to make a living from hand-drawing charts through manual calculations.
Scofield is plainly a natural-born teacher, and his no-fills approach is both refreshing and informative.
Victor Olliver The Astrological Journal April/May 2022