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The Placidus house system at high latitudes
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Ruud66



Joined: 05 Apr 2009
Posts: 47
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Posted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

waybread wrote:
But none of this is grounded in theory, or in the mathematics of what a particular system says about the cosmos. (Is there a celestial equator out there, really?? Or is it just a convention?)

Waybread,
While rereading I discovered this little aside-question of your earlier post and my imagination immediately started racing away with it.

Is the celestial equator really out there? No, of course it isn't, you can't find it in the sky, even if you point your telescope right at it. Which is what you were suggesting, I think.
Is it a convention? Maybe it is, but I would rather call it a model.

A model is a tool that enables you to look further than what is immediately apparent and it is referring to a particular experience. In the case of the celestial equator we refer to the fact that any celestial body that is found on it, will spend an equal amount of time above and below the horizon during one diurnal cycle (equal>equated>equator.) It so happens that the circle for which this is true is in a plane that is perpendicular to the rotation axis of the earth and runs through the centre of the earth. The rotation axis of the earth is another of these models.

Similarly, the ecliptic, which we take as the guiding circle of our zodiacs, is an imaginary circle in the sky where we see all the eclipses happening, both of the sun and of the moon. And if we look closer, we can see the sun on its yearly path moving along that same circle. And this ecliptic circle happens to be the plane of the yearly revolution of the earth around the sun.

We cannot see all of the experiences that our models refer to all at once, but if we connect the dots, we are able to construct these models. And in doing so we have transcended the limitations of time, so to speak.

I think house systems are models too. They should be referring to a particular set of experiences aswell and not just be a play of geometries.
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Ruud66



Joined: 05 Apr 2009
Posts: 47
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Posted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 9:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul wrote:
Quote:
To re-explain what I said further in the post of mind you quoted this from, imagine the mundane arc intersects the ecliptic at, say 70º - the point at which a mundane arc becomes a house system, as it’s currently used by astrologers, is that this point is subsequently projected at 90º arc.
Quote:
Now you may wish to adopt a mundane house system where the entire mundane arc demarcates the area between houses, but this is typically not what astrological software, or indeed tables or formulae for house division that are done by hand.
Quote:
To return to my point then, my first challenge or point of disagreement, is that we ought to separate the mundane house arcs from the astrological houses themselves - at least insofar as actual astrologers use them in practice.
Quote:
Astrologers, typically, do not occupy the spaces between those arcs as the ‘houses’. Now whether or not they should is entirely another matter.
Quote:
Remember: I’m not advocating a reinvention of what houses should be or how they’re calculated, you may be, but that is not what I’m doing, so my points are not related to that - my points are to point out, essentially, where the emperor has no clothes, and in doing so hope to draw attention to the fact that all the houses have problems at the poles so we can have a more reasoned discussion of house systems generally, but including “problems” at the poles.
(Emphases are mine.)

Paul,
Your approach comes as a complete surprise to me. I see now that you have tried to explain this through many of your posts, but I didn't understand until now: didn't understand, because I couldn't conceive of it. This approach is so far removed from how I see things in astrology that it took me ages to grasp your meaning and I'm still struggling with it.

Are you saying that the way astrologers typically use house systems should take primacy? That there the essence of the subject is to be found? That the heart of the matter is in the art of interpretation?

What I find particularly hard to understand is where you say that you want to keep yourself out of it and that you're really sympathetic about using a mundane house system, for example. I see this as contradicting your other statements.

My greatest difficulty is understanding what you're trying to achieve with this approach. Where does this lead to? What is the next step? Aren't you on a dangerous path of relativistic positions?

And do I understand you correctly?
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Paul
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Posted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ruud66 wrote:

Are you saying that the way astrologers typically use house systems should take primacy? That there the essence of the subject is to be found? That the heart of the matter is in the art of interpretation?


In a sense yes, that's exactly what I'm saying. But, I feel I need to quantify that a little. My focus has been more about exposing what astrologers are doing from what they think they're doing and how they act in practice - sort of to point out the emperor's new clothes where it comes to astrology. In that sense I'm trying to step outside and look at astrology, but also astrologers from the outside in and examine the claims they make and so on and what problems that arise from that. And of course the astrological software that this entails is a key part of that - how astrologers typically conceptualise houses.

That's because my posts are more about examining astrological uses of houses starting without any premise that any of them work better than another - I'm not trying to give my preference for how they should work or be calculated. This is what I'm trying to draw attention to is things like when people say "placidus doesn't work in the poles" that we can examine the ways that might be true, but then also ways in which all the houses may not work in the poles - or indeed for anything else.

Quote:
What I find particularly hard to understand is where you say that you want to keep yourself out of it and that you're really sympathetic about using a mundane house system, for example. I see this as contradicting your other statements.


I feel compelled/forced to introduce myself, because I feel nobody is following what I'm saying unless I accept some of their points - I'm trying to do that by saying, sure I get it, I'm sympathetic, but this is not my focus. I dont' mind a little bit of a "by the way" or "aside" if people feel they'll understand me better as a result, but I don't want to detract from my main focus.

Quote:
My greatest difficulty is understanding what you're trying to achieve with this approach. Where does this lead to? What is the next step? Aren't you on a dangerous path of relativistic positions?

And do I understand you correctly?


It's an attempt to move away from seeing houses as things which exist in themselves - they do not. They are constructs/models used by astrologers and for the most part, they are utterly ignorant of what they're doing with them or what they model.

I'm jaded by conversations that reduce the problem of houses to being "can my house system be used anywhere in the world" kind of mentalities. And in that way of thinking, they equally think "oh Placidus is a bad house system in general becaues it can't be used at the poles" and then "quadrant houses suck cos they are so fragile they break at the poles" and the more articulate might say "quadrant divisions, cos the MC is under the horizon, breaks".

And whilst they do that, they're not thinking about the fact that actually in practice houses have things like house rulers, have properties like cadent, angular succedent and so on, and that is where the real problem is, because everything else, such as calculation, is secondary to how they're used in practice.
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Ruud66



Joined: 05 Apr 2009
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Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Posted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul,

I read in your posts that you're not interested in calculation and conceptualisation of house systems, that you are "examining astrological uses of houses starting without any premise that any of them work better than another" and that you're "not trying to give my preference for how they should work or be calculated."
I see now this is a valid approach and that it is maybe the only way to educate astrologers about house systems and the misconceptions they may hold about the them.

My question to you: why does that mean that you oppose the research into the conceptualisation of house systems? Because that is what I've been trying to do all along.
Yes, it means that I leave astrologers free how they choose to apply the house systems in their work, however misguided that use may be. That is not really my focus.
But everytime I come up with a conclusion that I make from a theoretical point of view, you point out that the real problem is in the astrological practice. Yes, you're right, that is important! But does that mean that my focus is invalid and must be attacked?

Let me give you my view on astrological practice.
I see the practice of astrology as magic. It is exactly what you do if you perform magic. What is magic, roughly speaking? What I've seen of it (and that is just a little bit), it is a connection a person makes between the "normal" world and the spirit world. The spirit world is the underlaying quantum soup of infinite possibilities from which the phenomena we call "real" arise. These phenomena arise out of the spirit world (or dream world) because of one thing: consciousness. Human consciousness, collective consciousness, the consciousness that is underpinning all things and even empty space.
In other words: if you know what you're doing, you can create a bridge between the world of phenomena and the world of infinite possibilities with your consciousness.
Carlos Castañeda calls this the tonal and the nagual: the first and second ring of power.

What I've seen happening is that you can create a ceremony that is very deep and life-changing, by utilising simple tools. Tools you can find anywhere: a dead branch of a tree, a stone, a little bit of tobacco, some colorful candy from the supermarket, etc. etc. If, by your intent, you create a magical tool out of these everyday objects, you have performed magic and the ceremony is going to be very real and deep indeed. Feng Shui, that I talked about earlier in this context, is also magic in this sense. (Obviously, I'm not talking about magic how it is presented in fantasy stories and movies.)

Now, astrologers also perform magic by saying, intending and knowing with every fiber of their bodies that the zodiac has twelve signs and they work for them in the way they envision it. This has been done by the founders of astrology, who obviously knew what they were doing.
For houses of the horoscope this is a bit trickier, for reasons we all know: different choices lead to different systems.

My teacher, Karen Hamaker-Zondag, once told the story that she was on an astrology congress in America and she listened to a world renowned astrologer talking about the chart of a celebrity. But she discovered that the horoscope that was displayed was completely wrong. I don't know the mistake they made, maybe AM instead of PM, maybe a wrong date or year, but the interpretation was spot-on. Karen recalculated the horoscope correctly and she said she could see now the things that were said in this correct horoscope much more clearly.

Another example that I'm aware of is the Dutch astrologer J.B. Gieles (1918-2007) who created and worked all his life with the "Minus-One System of Progressions", which means that you start secondary progressions one year earlier. For example, the progressions of your 40th year of life can be found in the ephemeris on the 41st day of your life. This astrologer was able to make the most astounding predictions of great accuracy with this system. He was able to correct you on dates in your past and say: no that didn't happened in that year, it was a in this year, go, look it up! And then it turnes out he was correct and you were wrong.
And I'm sure there are numerous other astrological techniques that only worked for the astrologers who invented them.
I see the practical use of houses in the same way. If you choose your system and you believe in your choice, it will work for you if you're a good astrologer. It is surprisingly similar to choosing a Tarot deck, for example.

To wrap things up, do you see now that we are trying to do similar things, but from opposite ends of the spectrum?
You value the tradition as it is, the structure of the house system with the angles or turning points and the ideas of angular, succeedent and cadent and the accidental dignities that arise from that, and also the interconnectedness of the house lords. And then you point out to astrologers where their thinking is too simplistic, while also being sensitive to the relativity of the astrological practice.

I want to know how things work and I see that they don't work as expected at the poles. So, the question I ask is: how was the arena of the houses set up originally? What can I learn from that? And how can I reformulate the house systems from the very beginning in such a way that their behavior in the arctic and antarctic gets included? If I may use a not so humble analogy: I try to do with the house systems what Einstein did with Newton's theory of gravity. Widening the theoretical viewpoint and language to include situations that were not thought of in earlier times. In other words, I'm trying my hand at some magic.

You're saying everytime: it is only in the astrological practice where everything becomes apparent. I'm saying everytime: it is in the first idea of the conceptualisation of a system where it all begins.
I don't see where either approach contradicts the other, because we'll meet each other in the middle.
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Paul
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Posted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ruud66 wrote:

I read in your posts that you're not interested in calculation and conceptualisation of house systems, that you are "examining astrological uses of houses starting without any premise that any of them work better than another" and that you're "not trying to give my preference for how they should work or be calculated."
I see now this is a valid approach and that it is maybe the only way to educate astrologers about house systems and the misconceptions they may hold about the them.

My question to you: why does that mean that you oppose the research into the conceptualisation of house systems? Because that is what I've been trying to do all along.


Well I think you've misunderstood me, it's not that I'm not interested at all in calculation, but rather that I'm primarily interested in asking what it is we're trying to calculate. If you remember, my discussion on this started with a comment about the MC in whole and equal, and how this consideration, because the focus is always about how to calculate the houses, overlooks the problem of the houses, even for equal and whole.

My focus then is still on trying to recognise what it is we ought to be calculating and only then focusing on the calculation. Until then, what exactly are we calculating? And who are we calculating for?

It isn't that I'm against calculation, it's that it implies that problems of house division at the poles is purely/chiefly one of calculation, but I think instead that the problem is not knowing what is we're calculating.

Quote:
But everytime I come up with a conclusion that I make from a theoretical point of view, you point out that the real problem is in the astrological practice. Yes, you're right, that is important! But does that mean that my focus is invalid and must be attacked?


But I'm not attacking it.

I think it's best if you feel this way that I step away from the discussion. It's not my intention.

Quote:

I don't see where either approach contradicts the other, because we'll meet each other in the middle.


I agree, I think if you look over my posts you'll see my trend is to discuss calculation, but only in the context of its application. For me it's not about only one or the other, but providing a context for why and what we're calculating.
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Ruud66



Joined: 05 Apr 2009
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Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands

Posted: Thu Sep 27, 2018 7:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul wrote:
Well I think you've misunderstood me, it's not that I'm not interested at all in calculation, but rather that I'm primarily interested in asking what it is we're trying to calculate.

This is exactly what I'm trying to do aswell.

Quote:
My focus then is still on trying to recognise what it is we ought to be calculating and only then focusing on the calculation. Until then, what exactly are we calculating? And who are we calculating for?

My impression is that we take a different route in doing this as I tried to explain earlier.

Quote:
It isn't that I'm against calculation, it's that it implies that problems of house division at the poles is purely/chiefly one of calculation, but I think instead that the problem is not knowing what is we're calculating.

Can I ask you to elaborate on what you mean with 'calculation' exactly? I have seen that you use that word in (to me) surprising contexts. For example, when I try to go deeply into the conceptualisation of a system, you react by saying that it is not about the calculation, as far as you are concerned.

Quote:
But I'm not attacking it.

I think it's best if you feel this way that I step away from the discussion. It's not my intention.

Paul, we have a real talent for misinterpreting each other's words, it seems. And I have a partile Mercury-Mars conjunction in Aries in the 5th: I enjoy being attacked, providing things don't get personal or ad hominem, which has not happened with you yet: on the contrary, I'd say.

Quote:
I think if you look over my posts you'll see my trend is to discuss calculation, but only in the context of its application. For me it's not about only one or the other, but providing a context for why and what we're calculating.

But where does that lead to? I don't see how you get closer to understanding what 's happening with the houses in the arctic if you focus on the application and for whom you are calculating. I can only see relativism with such a focus.
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