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(religion, spiritualism, and occult)

The orbits of most of the planets in the solar system lie in approximately the same geometric plane, which is why we are able to draw an astrological chart using only a two-dimensional representation rather than one with three dimensions. There is, nevertheless, a variation in the tilt or angle of these orbits, and at any given time most planets are positioned north and south of the celestial equator (the plane described by projecting the Earth’s equator against the background of the stars). This variation is measured in degrees of declination. Two planets are contraparallel when they lie on opposite sides of the celestial equator and have the same degree of declination (e.g., one planet at 10° declination and the other at-10°). Planets with opposite declinations are said to have a relationship similar to an opposition. Relatively few astrologers take contraparallels into account when interpreting a horoscope.


DeVore, Nicholas. Encyclopedia of Astrology. New York: Philosophical Library, 1947.
Hand, Robert. Horoscope Symbols. Rockport, MA: Para Research, 1981.
The Astrology Book, Second Edition © 2003 Visible Ink Press®. All rights reserved.