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How many Astrological Methods do we need?
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3D



Joined: 19 Jun 2005
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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:01 pm    Post subject: How many Astrological Methods do we need? Reply with quote

It has been bothering me for quite some time that we astrologers seem to need so many different and at times contradicting methods and techniques to arrive at (often also contradicting) results.

Deb wrote in a thread about house systems:
Quote:
I am completely perplexed as to why people want to use two systems of houses simultaneously though.

This reminds me of a discussion about how to measure economic results of a business unit when suddenly somebody said:
“If you get two different results for the same business, then at least one of them has to be wrong”. Very simple – many were perplexed – but that makes sense, doesn’t it?

Translated into lingua astrologica, this could read

“If one Astrologer uses the NAIBOD and the other the PTOLEMY key, then at least one of them has to be wrong”

“If one Astrologer uses in mundo Directions and the other in zodiaco, then at least one of them has to be wrong”

“If one Astrologer uses Equal Houses and the other Placidus Houses, then at least one of them has to be wrong”

“If one Astrologer uses the tropical and the other the siderial zodiac, then at least one of them has to be wrong”

And so on…..

Why can’t we agree on certain universally accepted standards? Are the countless techniques/methods a smokescreen to divert from our inability to achieve the results what we sometimes claim? Are astrologers just individualists? Or is astrology divination in the sense that it does not matter if we are reading the clouds, tea leaves or the wrong (or right) chart?

Confused Confused

René
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Olivia



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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Because wherever two or more are gathered, there will always be politics.

That's the short answer, anyway, but it's true.
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Deb
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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Rene

This is a good question. It made me think about some recent comments by Steven Birchfield, where he quoted Ben Dykes' view that we can destroy the creative astrology when we obsess about trying to control it. The full post can be found here:

http://skyscript.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=4563&start=29

I'll just reproduce one comment because I think it may be relevant to your question:

    The ascendant could have been anywhere from -4 to +2 degrees from its actual position and still given the same signification. For me the question is just how necessary is it to obsess over exactness when the techniques the ancients used to make predictions allow for a margin of error? Just how much shall we strain at gnats and swallow camels?

That, for me, would answer the view that either the Naibod or the Ptolemy key is wrong. I personally accept that the Naidbod key is more accurate, and yet I believe the Ptolemy key is more astrologically 'correct' (the zodiacal degree is designed to signify a day) - one astrologer would look at this mathematically; I would look at it symbolically. But what I've generally noticed, is that in many situations astrologers use different approaches and still come to common conclusions.
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Why can’t we agree on certain universally accepted standards? Are the countless techniques/methods a smokescreen to divert from our inability to achieve the results what we sometimes claim? Are astrologers just individualists? Or is astrology divination in the sense that it does not matter if we are reading the clouds, tea leaves or the wrong (or right) chart?


I dont think the diversity of techniques is the result of intellectual cowardice or an intentional motivation to deceive and create what you describe as 'a smokescreen'. On the contrary I think these differences often come from from very sincere and passionate differences on what seems correct to each individual.

Is any technique as good as any other? Personally, I see this as a matter of human consciousness and what we can resonate with. I believe if an astrologer is open and has faith in their basic approach then yes a variety of techniques can work.

In his book 'The Moment of Astrology' Geoffrey Cornelius makes the valid point that one difficulty for most astrologers is that they have never encountered other divinatory systems in depth before coming across astrology. They therefore ascribe it unique characteristics. In fact we find such differences amongst other divinatory practitioners. However, astrologers are more literal than most and more likely to ascribe all the answers to this or that technique. This literalism comes from the fact that our symbolism is derived from planets and the movement of the earth rather than a pack of Tarot cards or set of I Ching coins.

In Zen Buddhism there is story about not confusing the finger pointing at the Moon for the Moon itself. I feel it has some relevance to our discussion. I dont know if anyone else will agree.

Here is the story:

Quote:
The nun Wu Jincang asked the Sixth Patriach Huineng, "I have studied the Mahaparinirvana sutra for many years, yet there are many areas i do not quite understand. Please enlighten me."

The patriach responded, "I am illiterate. Please read out the characters to me and perhaps I will be able to explain the meaning."

Said the nun, "You cannot even recognize the characters. How are you able then to understand the meaning?"

"Truth has nothing to do with words. Truth can be likened to the bright moon in the sky. Words, in this case, can be likened to a finger. The finger can point to the moon’s location. However, the finger is not the moon. To look at the moon, it is necessary to gaze beyond the finger, right?"


As I see it the differing astrological techniques represent a plurality of different 'fingers' all pointing at the 'Moon'. It not a question of one being fundamentally better or more true than the other. They are all means to an end rather than an end in itself. However, human diversity necessitates that we all select different paths or as we talk about in Buddhism 'skilful means' to our desired goal.
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''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus
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3D



Joined: 19 Jun 2005
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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Olivia,

Quote:
Because wherever two or more are gathered, there will always be politics.

That's the short answer……….


I’m sure one can see it that way Laughing

René
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3D



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Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Deb,

You address the question of preciseness and control. I agree with you on that. So is it a universally accepted agreement that it doesn’t matter if we use NAIBOD or PTOLEMY because we don’t need to have so precisely? – I wouldn’t have a big problem with that.

Maybe my example Naibod/Ptolemy was not a good one to express the more fundamental issues.

Quote:
But what I've generally noticed, is that in many situations astrologers use different approaches and still come to common conclusions.

Agreed. My closest astrology friend uses the Doebereiner Method, a method that is very strange to me and one that I would not use. But when we interpret a chart, we arrive at the same, a similar or a complementary result. I can’t remember a contradictory interpretation.

Many ways lead to Rome. As long as they lead to Rome, not one to Paris and the other to Cairo and a third to London, fine. That much individualism should be there.

It’s getting difficult when the approaches are contradictory. Take tropical/sidereal for example. If both tropicalists and siderialists use the same rulerships, their results are not complementary, they are contradictory if applied in the same context.
Just as an example, to solve that conflict, I would be happy to agree that there is a Siderial Zodiac (only one Ayanamsa, please!!), Earth Houses (tropical zodiac) and topocentric places (the Houses). Three spheres, each with its own meaning.

I’m not a control maniac but I don’t like fogginess and obvious contradiction.
Astrology is of course not purely rational, there is another dimension to it. But it has that rational part, too, and that part should be treated with rationality. I like Bernadette Brady's allegory "The Eagle and the Lark". We should get our Eagle flying high. And let our Lark sing from there.

It’s late already, I stop here

René
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###



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Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Astrology is of course not purely rational, there is another dimension to it. But it has that rational part, too, and that part should be treated with rationality.


But do astrologers know when to yield to the irrational, the quietly ever-present and necessary irrational? Try to get a feel for the whole vast sky. Does it truly feel safely and comfortably rational? Thinking 'More sky, less astrology' might be a good corrective and a good way to bypass all those methods.
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3D



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Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Kirk,

You wrote
Quote:
But do astrologers know when to yield to the irrational, the quietly ever-present and necessary irrational? Try to get a feel for the whole vast sky. Does it truly feel safely and comfortably rational? Thinking 'More sky, less astrology' might be a good corrective and a good way to bypass all those methods.


It is a real challenge to know when rationality has done its service and the time for intuition has come. But I wouldn’t see the two as mutually exclusive or competing. Where to draw the line probably depends on how somebody is inclined.
‘More sky, less astrology’ – hmm – a way to bypass all those methods is switching to sky omen reading. Intuition pure, no need for calculations….. Wink

René
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3D



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Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mark,

Interesting post. As I wrote in my previous post to Deb, many ways lead to Rome and I don’t mind as long as they lead to Rome (=reliable result) and as long as they are described in detail, and can be understood by other people (replicability). And I would add that they should be ‘teachable’. Many students starting to learn astrology are deeply confused by the many competing methods though.

Geoffrey Cornelius is, once he has defined the ‘moment’, very traditional in his method to delineate it: Planets, tropical Signs, Placidus Houses, main Aspects. I found his book interesting but didn’t agree with all his ideas, especially when he compares other divinatory techniques with Astrology. I can’t see what – in terms of technique only, the ‘Eagle’ – separating yarrow sticks or laying Tarot cards should have to do with calculating a chart of pre-existing planets, not influenced by us humans. What follows all these (rational) acts is of course the same: intuition (the Lark) comes into play.

Quote:
As I see it the differing astrological techniques represent a plurality of different 'fingers' all pointing at the 'Moon'. It’s not a question of one being fundamentally better or more true than the other. They are all means to an end rather than an end in itself. However, human diversity necessitates that we all select different paths or as we talk about in Buddhism 'skilful means' to our desired goal.

I like this Finger-Moon story. But I do think that there are good and better techniques. The best technique is however, as you say, the one with the best affinity to your mind. But it is still a technique, and as such should be rationally explainable, not arbitrary or contradictory.
I think there is a growing attitude ‘it’s right for me, so what?’ not on Skyscript, but especially in the German speaking area. ‘Anything goes’ is not debatable but it is not Astrology as I understand it.

René
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Olivia



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Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2009 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think that's where the problems hit, René. No, everything can't be anything.

When I first started studying astrology - more years ago than I care to admit - all there was was modern. So the fifth house was Leo was the Sun was children. Except they'd still tell you that Leo and the Sun are barren - but this was back in the 1950s (ouch!).

What's up with that, I wondered? And got a lot of funny looks.

Then all the past life, astrology can't predict the future stuff started coming in, and Carl Jung, despite his PROFOUND misunderstanding of alchemy and the elements, got enshrined as God. So did Rudhyar, and he's barely comprehensible at times. Other times he steals stuff from Aristotle, but doesn't tell you.

What a mess.

I knew astrology worked somehow. It was just too elegant not to. And I started trying to just track transits and progressions and got some hits on predictive work, but I was awash in a sea of confusion. So I left and went back to reading Lenormand cards - they haven't been psychologised - yet. Still do read them, for that matter.

Then the revival of traditional astrology happened and I came back. Happily. Though when people start telling me that charts can and have to be rectified to the precise second of birth, my eyes start to glaze over. Hey - I like directing the ascendant by term, it's been an extremely useful predictive technique.

But it's not the only predictive technique in the world, and yes, a chart will still work if it's a few minutes off. It certainly did for our forebears, and I don't think we've surpassed them yet - we haven't even caught up.

There are people in astrology who are very passionate about science, and I'm glad most of them are around. And some are more interested in history. And some in divination. I reckon we need all of us.

Read, look at history, understand as much of the WHY as you can - how come people did this? Given how much time and how many different places and cultures traditional astrology spans, some of it is probably going to make a great deal of sense to you, and you'll find you can use it yourself.

That's the best advice I can give you.
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Eddy



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Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interesting topic René.

Quote:
This reminds me of a discussion about how to measure economic results of a business unit when suddenly somebody said:
“If you get two different results for the same business, then at least one of them has to be wrong”. Very simple – many were perplexed – but that makes sense, doesn’t it?
In social sciences and related sciences like economy and law this is possible. Results often depend on what you look for. Example. In 2006, the year of the Dutch elections, a research institute on economy in relation to policy (CPB) had made a long term prognosis on the policy of each political party. Due to 'lack of time' the environmental issues weren't implemented in the research. In the results it turned out that the left green party wouldn't book a strong progress in the future. This party complained because they saw their investment in the environment as something that would pay itself back on the long term. Olivia's comparison with politics is therefore is to the point.

In astrological terms this can be compared with predicting a good marriage based upon a natal Venus-Jupiter conjunction which is directed by the Ascendant at age 25. If this conjunction would receive a natal square aspect of say Mars the (if there is one) marriage might not be so good at all. Doing an incomplete job could lead to incomplete results.

The question is now when a job is incomplete. This is one of the main points astrologers would disagree about. What is incomplete to the one is overcomplete to the other. Both traditional and modern astrology could risk to be so overcomplete that one can see everything one wants. Using 97 lots at one time or dozens of asteroids increase the chance of finding something that works sometimes and doesn't work other times. Overcompleteness is especially "usefull" in hindsight interpretation. Since astronomers discover many objects, especially modern astrology is susceptible to this. Software programs that have all these possibilities are rather a curse than a blessing. It gives possibilities to calculate everything and make people cry out things like: "Oh my god, my converse solar arc progressed Juno - Sedna midpoint is in a septile aspect to my natal Chiron-Pluto midpoint in the 22.5° dial in my 11th harmonic chart, and I'm com-plete-ly stressed out!". Hopefully most people use their common sense and don't work this way.

Quote:
The ascendant could have been anywhere from -4 to +2 degrees from its actual position and still given the same signification. For me the question is just how necessary is it to obsess over exactness when the techniques the ancients used to make predictions allow for a margin of error? Just how much shall we strain at gnats and swallow camels?

That, for me, would answer the view that either the Naibod or the Ptolemy key is wrong. I personally accept that the Naidbod key is more accurate, and yet I believe the Ptolemy key is more astrologically 'correct'
In case of the directions I think the aim of the different 'key' theories is not the accuracy but the quest for a satisfying theory. Or as in the "Primaries - Keys" thread where Graham wrote:
Quote:
Point taken about the danger of desperately seeking more and more precision; I'm rather trying to find a principle for a primary key which I find symbolically coherent, so that I can feel comfortable using the key, not because I think it will suddenly pinpoint everything to the day


Quote:
one astrologer would look at this mathematically; I would look at it symbolically.
This is another main point where astrologers could disagree upon. It comes close to the natural v. judicial astrology issue. The former approach could risk to disregard the human behind the chart, the latter could be susceptible to the overuse of techniques that lack a rational basis. (like using the mythical figures names of recently discovered asteroids to indicate their meaning). These two approaches doesn't necessarily need to collide, they even may have a common source. The mathematical/astronomical facts stirs the human mind which subsequently expresses itself through symbols. One of the reasons I prefer to do as much as possible hand calculations is not only to understand what is actually happening from a mathematical point of view but also to balance the symbolic approach. This brings harmony between the left and right hemisphere of the brain. The ancient astrologers were expected to know their maths, know the astrological systems and to have a good sense of morality.

Quote:
I dont think the diversity of techniques is the result of intellectual cowardice or an intentional motivation to deceive and create what you describe as 'a smokescreen'. On the contrary I think these differences often come from from very sincere and passionate differences on what seems correct to each individual.
That's what I think too. A few years ago one of my courses was 'Comparative Law'. This is about comparing the law systems of countries. Sometimes with the aim of harmonisation (like in the EU). For example when you buy a car of someone then under Dutch law the car is yours when you finally get the car. In French law however the car is already yours when you have agreed on the deal and payed for it. The roots of western private law lie in Roman law but have been nationally 'coloured' in each country and mixed with other traditions like Germanic and Saxon laws. Therefore there are differences. The practice of harmonising law is not simply a mixing or horse trading but it goes deeper. The basic meaning of the rules is researched. Private law aims at a balance between parties in which reasonability is aimed at. What decision is best to leave two parties satisfied. Therefore it is the aim of the rule that is looked at.

This could also be applied to astrology; a study of 'Comparative Astrology' would research the aims of the different systems, like Mark explained with the different fingers pointing to the Moon. Just mixing Indian and Western astrology for example would lead to unsatisfying results. However looking for a common basis and understanding how the different types of astrology evolved on different soils would help to mutual approach the systems. This would be in line with Olivia's remark:
Quote:
Read, look at history, understand as much of the WHY as you can - how come people did this? Given how much time and how many different places and cultures traditional astrology spans, some of it is probably going to make a great deal of sense to you, and you'll find you can use it yourself.


The 'comparative' element is very difficult though. What to do if systems have grown apart?
Quote:
It’s getting difficult when the approaches are contradictory. Take tropical/sidereal for example. If both tropicalists and siderialists use the same rulerships, their results are not complementary, they are contradictory if applied in the same context.
This is a good example of traditions that symbolically and litterally (through precession) grew apart. A view could be that both zodiacs have their value but that the emphasis on them should be much less than usual. The symbolism stems from an era when both systems coincided and precession was unknown. What one can do is to research the origin of the techniques and meanings of the signs (through the exaltations for example) and try to find out what was meant by the symbolism.

Quote:
I found his book interesting but didn’t agree with all his ideas, especially when he compares other divinatory techniques with Astrology. I can’t see what – in terms of technique only, the ‘Eagle’ – separating yarrow sticks or laying Tarot cards should have to do with calculating a chart of pre-existing planets, not influenced by us humans. What follows all these (rational) acts is of course the same: intuition (the Lark) comes into play.
Colin Wilson's book "The Occult" tells about 'solar science' which is the modern science like astronomy and physics etc. and 'lunar science' all kinds of divination like tarot, I Ching etc. While these divination methods mainly depend on what one would call mere coincidence (of the cards laid down and the thrown coins), astrology depends on the 'hard facts' of science. Astrology therefore is in theunique position of solar and lunar science. This allegory can be extended to the difficulty of constructing a luni-solar calendar while it is much easier to construct apart calendars. This apparently incompatibility of hard facts and symbolism makes it very difficult to practice astrology. At birth of a person one can immediately calculate directions and progressions in full exactness for the next 70 years. This is not sufficient for prediction. One must also have a look at the social circumstances of the person the situation of the country etc. However I think the practice of astrology helps in developing a sort of intuition in which one gets to the right conclusion. This makes astrology hard to 'test' or to place it in neatly fitting rules.

Quote:
I think there is a growing attitude ‘it’s right for me, so what?’
This can be problematic as psychological effects are involved with this issue. However it should be possible to do some self-observation/self-research without finding it immediately condemned as the 'it-works-for-me-syndrome'. Of course there is the pitfall of self suggestion. But this is also possible in the interaction between astrologer and chart owner/client. This has been demonstrated in psychological tests. So there is also the possibility of the 'it works for my clients'/'it works on this and that celebrity' which I think is even worse than the 'it works in my case' remark, after all in the latter case the only one who is fooled is just the person itself. I believe self observation and experiment is possible, just like it is possible to research if one gets drunk from alcohol. One just should care to use as few elements as possible. Natal chart delineation is always a bit tricky because of (self)suggestion. This is less so in the case of prediction, however here also one should take great care.
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Mark
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Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 6:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Rene,

Quote:
Interesting post. As I wrote in my previous post to Deb, many ways lead to Rome and I don’t mind as long as they lead to Rome (=reliable result) and as long as they are described in detail, and can be understood by other people (replicability). And I would add that they should be ‘teachable’. Many students starting to learn astrology are deeply confused by the many competing methods though.


I agree. I suppose that is why I much prefer traditional astrology. Much of modern psychological astrology is vague to the point of incoherence at times. I am certainly not arguing for throwing rationality out the window and simply going on just intuition. Looking at horary for example there are a set of clear rules than greatly assist a judgement. The problem with a purely intuitive approach is that it cannot really be taught and the answers follow no clear path that others could follow. I would suspect a group of experienced traditional astrologers could reach a fairly similar view on a series of horary charts. However, that is only one part of the phenomena we call astrology today. Other peope come to astrology with different motivations. To some people astrology is more important as a therapeutic or esoteric tool rather than a predictive system to give meaningful realistic indicators on life events. You might have noticed my doubts on house systems on the other thread. Again one would imagine millenia of astrology could have resolved this or which zodiac is best etc etc etc. Part of the problem is that astrology is so complex one can always ascribe an outcome to different influueces in the chart. This is why I keep coming back to the consciousness of the astrologer. I believe the astrologer has to have total faith in their technique. Call it the 'Tinkerbell effect' if you like but once we become riddled with doubts it cripples our ability to make the magic work. I am experiencing a bit of that myself right now on house systems. Confused

I suppose that does raise the question on whether the analogy I used of pointing at the moon holds. Yes I am starting to doubt my own point! Perhaps in traditional astrology we are. Also some modern types of astrology focused on predictive accuracy and precise delineation. For example Noel Tyl, Uranian astrology, and the Huber school teach their students a clear system of astrological delineation. I dont happen to follow these approaches but at least there is a clear system one can relate an astrological analysis to. You would think that we could agree if for example modern or traditional rulers work best? However, we cannot. Both sides sincerely believe the other side has it wrong. If astrology is repeatable one would imagine this could be demonstrated clearly one way or the other?

Are we really all aiming for the same destination? While we I might expect a valid predictive tool to have some degree of verifiablity amongst astrologers some astrology fits more into a purely healing or mystical paradigm which has little interest in timed accuracy. Eddy's term 'comparative astrology' seems quite useful. In religion the Christian aims for salvation through faith in Christ while the Buddhist aims for freedom from the round of karma and rebirth and the suffering attending it. Both the end and means differ. Some types of astrology are so fundamentally different I cannot see any hope of consensus.

In regard more technique orientated astrology one might expect more common ground. Of all the astrology I have looked at traditional horary comes closest to this. However, that is probably because much of it has been taught within a very narrow prism of traditional technique ie primarily around Lilly and the 17th century. What happens if older techniques gain more favour and people start insisting Alcabitius, Porphyry or other house systems give more accurate readings? Accidental dignity of a planet is crucial in horary and astrology generally. If we cannot even agree what house a planet is in can we ever hope to agree about anything?

Quote:
Geoffrey Cornelius is, once he has defined the ‘moment’, very traditional in his method to delineate it: Planets, tropical Signs, Placidus Houses, main Aspects. I found his book interesting but didn’t agree with all his ideas, especially when he compares other divinatory techniques with Astrology. I can’t see what – in terms of technique only, the ‘Eagle’ – separating yarrow sticks or laying Tarot cards should have to do with calculating a chart of pre-existing planets, not influenced by us humans. What follows all these (rational) acts is of course the same: intuition (the Lark) comes into play.


In a nutshell Cornelius argues horary is the purest form of astrology because it consciously abandons any attempt to describe astrology in terms of causes and scientific laws. In addition he notes the astrologer can actually be reflected in the chart delineation.

A tacit acknowledgement that the astrologer is a participant in 'the moment' not just a totally separate bystander. Horary has always posed a dilemma for those that espouse a purely naturalistic astrology. Astrologers such as William Ramesey or Charles Carter have objected to such an appproach. Similarly Ptolemy had no time for astrology for an astrology that could not be related to natural phenomena. Ptolemy the 'scientist' sought to rationalize astrology as much as possible and wanted to separate it not just from other divinatory traditions but most of all the divinatory strand of astrology itself.

This ties into Eddy's comments:

Quote:
This is another main point where astrologers could disagree upon. It comes close to the natural v. judicial astrology issue. The former approach could risk to disregard the human behind the chart, the latter could be susceptible to the overuse of techniques that lack a rational basis. (like using the mythical figures names of recently discovered asteroids to indicate their meaning). These two approaches doesn't necessarily need to collide, they even may have a common source. The mathematical/astronomical facts stirs the human mind which subsequently expresses itself through symbols.



This is probably a debate that existed since the origins of astrology.

Eddy also stated:

Quote:
Colin Wilson's book "The Occult" tells about 'solar science' which is the modern science like astronomy and physics etc. and 'lunar science' all kinds of divination like tarot, I Ching etc. While these divination methods mainly depend on what one would call mere coincidence (of the cards laid down and the thrown coins), astrology depends on the 'hard facts' of science. Astrology therefore is in theunique position of solar and lunar science. ......At birth of a person one can immediately calculate directions and progressions in full exactness for the next 70 years. This is not sufficient for prediction. One must also have a look at the social circumstances of the person the situation of the country etc. However I think the practice of astrology helps in developing a sort of intuition in which one gets to the right conclusion. This makes astrology hard to 'test' or to place it in neatly fitting rules.


I remember reading this book in my teens and being very taken by this notion of 'Solar' and 'Lunar' knowledge systems.

Eddy does have a point. Certainly in history astrology and its practitioners upheld both ''Solar' and ''Lunar knowledge'' and advanced both. Astronomy and astrology were once a unified art and science. However, from the early modern period the two disciplines have completely divided. While astrology may use the hard data of astronomy is it really a 'Solar' science producing repeatable evidence today?

I think Cornelius has a good point in drawing comparisons between astrology and other divinatory traditions. Again horary is a good example. Its true horary and traditional astrology are probably stronger on having more rational rules that can be followed. Still lets compare it to Tarot which I have studied. Tarot cards have specific meanings. Moreover their interaction can be compared to the aspects in astrology and their placement or 'spread' to the houses or departments of life. Tarot even has a notion of 'dignities' which means certain cards are stronger next to some cards than others.

Clearly, there are differences too. While in astrology its 'as above so below' in other systems it can be 'as below so above'. In the case of Tarot, I Ching or Runes its the microcosm mirroring the macrocosm rather than vice versa as in astrology. Historically, Cornelius points out the links between liver divination and astrological omens in ancient Babylon. Many scholars think the 'science' of liver divination was a precusror to astrology. Just as with later astrology the colour, shape, size, and markings of a liver were minutely assessed much as planets were later in the sky. I therefore support Cornelius in his central point that astrology originates from the same divinatory or omen based mindset as other systems used to day.

Of course much of astrological symbolism is based on the actual movements of planets and the earth. Most of astrology relies on cyclical events rather than one off portents. Still, practical astrology is not the same as astronomy. Its fundamentally a symbolic interpretation of reality. Interpretaing symbols whether hexagrams, cards, runes or planets is a common thread. What links them all is the creative power of human consciousness to perceive connections that relate to everyday life. All divination systems rely on the same approach and their own set of 'rules'. Where astrology is unique is the diversity of techniques it offers and the precision it can provide on events. However, it relies on seeing life as a web of interconnections that is fundamentally meaningful.

For those incensed by or at least sceptical about the idea that astrology is connected to omens, oracles and divination I would like to recommend a book I first heard about through a review by Garry Phillipson here on skyscript:

http://www.skyscript.co.uk/rev_skafte.html

Its entitled 'When Oracles Speak - Opening yourself to messages found in dreams, signs and the voices of nature' by Dianne Skafte

Its not specifically about astrology but I think like Garry Philipson it has much to offer astrologers. You can get it very cheaply on amazon.
_________________
''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus


Last edited by Mark on Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:03 pm; edited 2 times in total
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3D



Joined: 19 Jun 2005
Posts: 125

Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Eddy

Thank you for your post. There so many interesting aspects that would merit being addressed individually, but let me just address two.

Quote:
Using 97 lots at one time or dozens of asteroids increase the chance of finding something that works sometimes and doesn't work other times. Overcompleteness is especially "usefull" in hindsight interpretation.
"Oh my god, my converse solar arc progressed Juno - Sedna midpoint is in a septile aspect to my natal Chiron-Pluto midpoint in the 22.5° dial in my 11th harmonic chart, and I'm com-plete-ly stressed out!"


My statement that if you get two different results for the same issue, then at least one of them has to be wrong was targeted specifically at hindsight results. What you describe here is a ‘technique’ quite often used that is not explainable and not teachable, and also not fit for predictions. It falls under the category ‘anything goes’, and it cannot be debated.

Quote:
Colin Wilson's book "The Occult" tells about 'solar science' which is the modern science like astronomy and physics etc. and 'lunar science' all kinds of divination like tarot, I Ching etc. While these divination methods mainly depend on what one would call mere coincidence (of the cards laid down and the thrown coins), astrology depends on the 'hard facts' of science.


My astrology friend is a PhD in mathematics, and he vividly dissents the idea of ‘coincidence’. He even says it can be proven that there is – mathematically - no such thing as a coincidence. It’s interesting that in German coincidence is called “Zufall”, literally meaning “that which falls to you”. So with I Ging or Tarot, how the cards or sticks fall mean ‘what falls to you’.
In natal Astrology, the child chooses the ‘moment’. In horary, the question determines the moment. In mundane Astrology, the Earth chooses the moment of the earthquake, or a group of politicians chooses to make an agreement.
But never in Astrology, we humans put the planets in a certain place like we do with sticks, coins or cards. – That’s the difference between Astrology and other divinatory methods, Mr Cornelius!

Just some thoughts, inspired by your post Smile

René
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Mark
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Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
In natal Astrology, the child chooses the ‘moment’. In horary, the question determines the moment. In mundane Astrology, the Earth chooses the moment of the earthquake, or a group of politicians chooses to make an agreement.


And the astrologer is off doing what while all this happens? Surely, without an astrologer to interpret the symbols implied in all this there is no astrology?

What about 'wrong charts' that still seem to work?

Mark
_________________
''Man is troubled not by events, but by the meaning he gives them"

Epictetus


Last edited by Mark on Thu Jul 30, 2009 8:00 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Olivia



Joined: 15 Oct 2008
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Posted: Thu Jul 30, 2009 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No we don't put the planets in different places, but we do choose the moment we ask a horary question - and the planets are always moving. The answer I get if I ask tomorrow morning may be completely different to the answer I'd get if I asked this afternoon.

I have some serious problems with the idea that a child chooses its moment of birth, but that might be straying a bit far afield of this discussion.
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