I started writing this but then noticed Ari has posted a substantial reply. But I thought I’d post it anyway, in case it also helps at all.
As Ari pointed out, any aspect must be related to its part in the bigger picture of the whole Phasal cycle - which is based on the planets orbiting the Sun.
… the planets all orbit the Sun from different distances and at different speeds meaning each planet takes a different amount of time to orbit the Sun. As we know those planets closer to the Sun move faster while those further out move slower and take longer. This is reflected in their differing speeds of movement through the Zodiac - in the chart one of the planets moving faster around the chart than the other.
When looking at any two planets the outer planet will, on average, be moving more slowly around the Zodiac than the other (more) inner planet, which is closer to the Sun. Therefore, in it's journey round the Sun, the faster planet will always be overtaking the more slower moving (outer) planet. This means the alignment of the planets with each other is constantly changing – the two planets are in a cyclic relationship with each other which repeats over time - time and time again. This ongoing relationship between the two planets is shown by their Phasal Cycles.
Whenever the faster inner planet catches up to the slower (more) outer planet - and they are at the same point in the chart - a New Phasal cycle begins.
As the faster moving planet then pulls away from the slower one the separation between them increases until they are exactly opposite each other in the chart (waxing
part of cycle). Then the separation starts decreasing until the faster inner planet has caught up to the slower planet again and the cycle ends (waning
part of cycle). This whole cycle is the Phasal cycle.
Both the Waxing
halves are each broken down into 4 equally sized phases, making 8 phases in the whole cycle. Each phase is a 45 degree segment of the zodiac (chart), all adding up to 360. The end of each phase is a critical junction point, or gate, into the following phase. Between any two planets the conjunction and opposition mark the beginning and midway parts of the cycle, and all the other aspects will occur once in the waxing half, and once again in the waning half.
Planets represent different energies we have to fulfil various different functions in our lives. We direct our energy into different functions required by the situations and circumstances we are involved in. Just how we integrate inside us the energies used to fulfil these differing functions is shown firstly, in a general way, by the phase between the planets, and within that, more specifically by any aspect occurring between them – in the way that aspect manifests in that particular phase.
When two planets start a new cycle their different energies completely combine into a single new energy – this seeds something new - an intention or purpose, related to the combination of those two energies. As the energies have totally combined its not possible at first to really know what is happening, and the only approach to life that can be taken as far as those two functions (now a combined energy) is concerned, is an instinctual one. It’s a subconscious sense of the new.
The whole waxing half of the cycle is about gaining more consciousness of this sense of new intention and purpose, the nature of which will be shown by the two different functions involved. Finding personal meaning for the new intention is necessary, so as to focus that energy in a direction as a purpose that will actualise and thus fulfil the intention. This involves gestating the energy, growing meaning for it inside first - lots of experimentation with things until the meaning becomes clear. Then developing the purpose as a personally identifiable thing to give it shape and form, at least for oneself. This can be very satisfying. However as the planets move through the waxing phase the personal identification with the new purpose has to be relinquished to allow further growth and interaction with others, regarding it, to happen. Once this has been achieved the new purpose can be established in a social context which is necessary to validate it, and also infuse the process with the further energy required to bring the intention to full expansion.
The waning half is about fully actualising the new intention in a social context, which requires a full merging of one’s purpose within the existing structure, rules, regulations, understanding and taboos etc of the society in which this process is happening. This requires ever more expansion of consciousness as any remaining personal identification and attachment to the process/activity creates blocks and obstacles to its fulfilment, and eventual fruition within a collective context. But once this has happened, the purpose has been fulfilled externally (to oneself), and an even greater satisfaction is experienced.
However, since the purpose has now been fulfilled a loss of meaning starts to take over. Thus the process starts moving back inside where a deeper meaning for the original intention can be searched for – what was that all about, where do I go from here, and what does that really mean for me now? Also, the integration with society - that was required to fully establish the purpose externally and thus bringing satisfaction on that count … now also loses meaning – the integration was only for that specific purpose. For this reason, and also to get a better perspective, the person has to separate from the prevailing consensus views concerning their purpose, and see their intention from a more individualised point again, so they can then relate it to a larger sense of reality, whatever that may be to the person. Through this final part of the cycle the person can now discover a more ultimate sense of meaning for the whole process, now that it has come to a culmination, completion.
Of course it can take many lifetimes for two planets to complete a full phasal cycle. The particular phasal aspect that any two planets are in, in the chart, shows where the Soul has got to in it's development of those energies/functions, firstly in the larger unfolding of their whole phasal cycle, but also the orb will show how relatively new or old any particular aspect is for the Soul (although I never came across anywhere where Jeffrey gave any details about that in terms of actual measureable time).
An aspect does actually have a basic generic meaning, but it operates very differently depending on whether it’s in the waxing or waning half of the cycle. So that’s the first thing to determine, and it will show you which phase it’s in. Ari has written about the sesquiquadrate in all it's different phases (and of course reading up on it in Pluto II).
Most websites will have an aspect grid to show you the aspects. To see what phase an aspect is in one way is as follows … [This works but a different, and more simpler way is described below by Ari & Steve which would be good to check out first. This method described by them is the preferred EA method because it is a very simple method]
1. Start with the slower moving planet. Degree Phase Aspect
(Remember that, being at the centre of the solar system, the Sun doesn’t orbit around anything (within the solar system) so it has no movement, no speed at all – it is the “slowest” planet of them all in that sense).
eg Neptune at 0 Scorpio.
2. Moving anticlockwise around the chart (the direction all planets move in), counting the number of degrees to the other, faster moving, planet.
(The exception is with the nodes when they are the faster moving point. As they move around the chart clockwise, you move clockwise round the chart when counting the degrees they are from the slower moving planet).
eg Venus at 14 Gemini
=> There are 224 degrees from 0 Scorpio to 14 Gemini. Then look in the list below to see it’s phasal aspect.
Our example: 224 is in very close orb to a Full Sesquiquadrate (224.99)
0 New Conjunction
30 New SemiSextile
36 New Decile
40 New Novile
44.99 New SemiSquare
45 Crescent SemiSquare
51.43 Crescent Septile
60 Crescent Sextile
72 Crescent Quintile
80 Crescent BiNovile
89.99 Crescent Square
90 First Quarter Square
102.86 First Quarter BiSeptile
108 First Quarter SesquiQuintile
120 First Quarter Trine
134.99 First Quarter Sesquiquadrate
135 Gibbous Sesquiquadrate
144 Gibbous BiQuintile
150 Gibbous Quincunx
154.29 Gibbous TriSeptile
179.99 Gibbous Opposition
180 Full Opposition
205.71 Full TriSeptile
210 Full Qunincunx
216 Full BiQuintile
224.99 Full SesquiQuadrate
225 Disseminating Sesquiquadrate
240 Disseminating Trine
252 Disseminating SesquiQuintile
257.14 Disseminating BiSeptile
269.99 Disseminating Square
270 Third Quarter Square
280 Third Quarter BiNovile
288 Third Quarter Quintile
300 Third Quarter Sextile
308.57 Third Quarter Septile
314.99 Third Quarter SemiSquare
315 Balsamic SemiSquare
320 Balsamic Novile
324 Balsamic Decile
330 Balsamic SemiSextile
359.99 Balsamic ConjunctionRelative speed of the planets / points
Moon's South & North Nodes