Astrology can seem like an intimidating discipline. People have been watching the stars for over 3000 years, and there’s so much to learn. And when it comes time to doing Pagan or Wiccan ritual or spellwork, there may not be a desire to pore through tons of different books to find the right time, astrologically speaking. So in the end you decide that the timing is not that important, even though you really want to enhance your work with astrology, right?

 If this sounds like you, Practical Astrology for Witches and Pagans is your answer. Ivo Dominguez does an excellent job of giving you the resources you need in a handy volume.  You’ll find short but useful descriptions of all of the planets, including the various glyphs, as well as the signs and an overview of the astrological chart and how it works like a clock.

 Of course, no book like this one would be complete without a look at the signs and the elements in astrology. Those are certainly present. But what makes it different from other astrology books is that it focuses on the “energy” or the flavor of a particular sign instead of how that sign would manifest in a person.

 One of the exercises I found especially interesting was the attunement meditation for the “elder planets”, the planets that could be seen with the naked eye: The Sun, the Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. Since each planet rules a particular day of the week, Dominguez provides an activity that involves doing a particular meditation on a given day for a full week. He admits that he’s stripped down the exercise because he really wants you to try it, and I love the concept of attuning yourself to a particular planet’s energy.

Another short section of the book I enjoyed is “Adapting to the When”. In other words, it’s about how to choose the right time for a particular magickal undertaking. I agree with Dominguez that it’s best to begin with the end in mind, to borrow a phrase from Covey, and elect to do your spellwork or ritual work at a time when the astrological factors favor it.

 Unfortunately, however, real life gets in the way, and sometimes we can’t wait for a particular transit or aspect to occur because we have to do the work. So the author also addresses adapting to different astrological conditions as they arise; he asserts that the more comfortable you become with astrology, the easier it will be to make changes on the fly, and I wholeheartedly agree.

If you’re interested in bringing astrology into your ritual work or spellwork, you really need to have Practical Astrology for Witches and Pagans on your shelf. To me it is an excellent resource that shows people how to put astrology to work in a practical way.

~Review by John Marani

Author: Ivo Dominguez, Jr.
Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC, 2016
pp. 196, $18.95 US

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