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Is Uranus Associated with Aries?
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Michael Sternbach



Joined: 01 Mar 2014
Posts: 509
Location: Switzerland

Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 2:43 am    Post subject: Classical verses modern rulers - is there a reconciliation? Reply with quote

Hi Mark & Paul,

Here is my response re your replies to my post of Mar 06, 2014 1:39 pm. Since you are asking me to elaborate several fairly complex matters, in order to answer adequately, my post is not going to be exactly a short one...

Mark wrote: Fri Mar 07, 2014 1:03 pm (also the following quotes)
Quote:
A malefic in traditional astrology is about excess. Too much cold, dryness, moisture or heat.


I do understand the concept of a malefic carrying an "excess" of a Aristotelian quality. Nevertheless, wouldn't you agree, they are all just fine the way Nature has made them? That being said, I admit that the "malefics" sometimes have a particularly challenging or destructive effect - even though this depends on a number of factors, not the least of them being how well an individual (or collective, for that matter) is able to integrate these energies into their lifes and give them adequate expression. The name "malefic" seems to be a rather unfortunate one (pun unintended); it is bound to make people (astrologers) think of something negative! But it may be difficult to get rid of this term, for historical reasons.

Quote:
Secondly, though, this is only a generalised position. We always need to take account of the specific circumstances of each chart . Numerous things can transform a natural benefic into an accidental malefic. Hence we look at essential dignity and reception, aspectual contacts, house placement and rulership, planetary phase , sect etc. From all this a so called natural benefic like say Jupiter can end up operating in quite a malefic ie destructive manner in a chart. So the traditional outlook is a good deal more subtle than many seem to realise.


I, for one, do realise this. Actually, this is exactly what I wrote. Of course, in the traditional scheme this modification by circumstances applies to "benefics" as well as "malefics" - so why not consider both of them rather neutral in the first place?

Quote:
... in practical terms I think relatively few modern astrologers would go quite as far as you and suggest that all planets are effectively 'common' or neutral to start with ... I have yet to hear anyone describe Pluto as ‘neutral’ ... Ok people may have a more psychological understanding of how this planet operates but if this planet isn’t regarded as a malefic I don’t know what is.


Neither do I! Wink Therese recently wrote to me that in “Evolutionary Astrology” Pluto is equated with the soul.

http://skyscript.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8106

I agree with her that this seems to go a little too far, though. But consider: No Pluto = no putrefaction (dead bodies of all species lying around everywhere – yuck!). No sex life!!! No Mickey Mouse comics! At least in the modern astrological understanding. - Sure enough, Pluto's lectures are rather harsh sometimes.

Quote:
[Iamblichus] is interesting though in presenting a more interior understanding of the operation of the planets that reminds me somewhat of Ficino.


Well noted, Mark. I referred to Ficino in a related context in Therese's thread mentioned above.

Mark wrote: Fri Mar 07, 2014 2:41 pm (also the following quotes)
Quote:
The problem I have with your perspective here is that the classical rulership system wasn’t understood as being based on the geocentric placement of planets. It was based on how the other signs (and by implication their rulers) related to the signs of the two luminaries i.e. Leo + Cancer.


Paul wrote: Fri Mar 07, 2014 2:58 pm (also the following quotes)
Quote:
Can you explain this point? It seems like you were positing some logic and then pointing out that Uranus breaks that logic, and rather than conclude that the logic is faulty it seems to be taken that the scheme is incontrovertible and it reveals some deep truth about Uranus, rather than just logically see that the scheme, of which people devised, appears to lack logic and consistency.


Believe me, I have given a lot of consideration to the traditional rulership system. No matter how the ancients commented about it, the fact remains that there are always two planets of opposite (complementary) nature facing each other in this diagram. Which obviously corresponds with their order in the geocentric (Ptolemaic) system in the manner which I have outlined:

Moon (innermost) - Saturn (outermost)
Mercury (second innermost) - Jupiter (second outermost)
Venus (third innermost) - Mars (third outermost)

However, the Sun occupies the central orbit in the geocentric system (that would be the fourth, independent from where you start counting).

Now, the order given still holds if you switch to a heliocentric perspective - except that the Earth and the Sun exchange their positions. And, of course, the Moon falls out of the picture altogether as it is circling around the Earth. For reasons of symmetry, in the heliocentric model, an innermost circle may be substituted for the Moon's, belonging to the planet Vulcan (no, not Mr. Spock's home world). I hear some of you exclaiming: What else is Michael going to throw in?! However... such a body in the vicinity of the Sun has been sighted by a number of astronomers in history, but was always lost again - so it could never be confirmed. Nevertheless, many astronomers state good reasons for the existence of one or several small bodies orbiting the Sun very closely; they call them vulcanoids. In recent times, there are great efforts being made to observe them, involving the use of telescopes on plains and satellites. Once one of them will be established as a fact, it conceivably may be named Vulcan. For what it's worth, consider that notable esotericists like Steiner, Bailey, and Cacey included Vulcan in their systems. So from a heliocentric perspective, Vulcan (or a system of vulcanoids) would replace the Moon as a "counterpoise" to Saturn. - But this would be a theme for another thread.

Now, if we expand our heliocentric picture, Uranus is indeed balancing the Sun, in full accordance with the extended rulership system. This is why I said that Uranus is leading us from the geocentric to the heliocentric perspective. Is this logical? Yes – at least in a Uranian sense!

Mark wrote:
Quote:
There is of course a real dilemma for moderns in the current rulership scheme. The beauty and harmony of the classical system has been destroyed and its inherent logic lost.


Therefore I am advocating a revised system that (in my view) restores the harmony and logic of the classical one. See my earlier post Mar 02, 2014 5:03 pm. Note that in this scheme classical planets are facing classical planets, and transsaturnians transsaturnians. The latter with the exception of Uranus opposite to the Sun, for which I have given an explanation in that same post. The two symbolical snakes fitted into the zodiac, one belonging to the Sun, the other to the Moon, once again bestow pivotal roles to the Luminaries, much in the way they own in the classical system.

Mark wrote:
Quote:
There is no necessity to dismember the traditional rulership scheme if you want to work with the outer planets in charts.


As I wrote in aforesaid post, I do respect the classical scheme, but some of its planets now become co-rulers. By the same token, it seems reasonable to assume that the transsaturnians are co-rulers of the hitherto only "classically ruled" signs - which may, to a degree, reconcile those who think that Pluto should be assigned to Aries. And still to be found planets accordingly to further signs in the order of the signs (for example, Therese - by the way, your Zoroastrian text fragment is fascinating Wink ).

Mark wrote:
Quote:
Are people really going to assign the incredibly slow moving bodies like say Eris, Makemake or Sedna to the remaining signs?


I would not suggest giving rulerships to any Plutoids for the time being, even though it stands to reason that all them show various attributes of Scorpio, with Pluto as the principal body. After all, he is the brightest of their kind (as seen from Earth) and his rulership of Scorpio is well accepted by most modern astrologers.

Why the slow movement of a body should disqualify it as a sign ruler is beyond my comprehension, frankly.

Mark wrote:
Quote:
The notion that the discovery of a new planet will somehow come to the rescue is in my view nothing more than a pipedream.


I don't think that anything I can say would change your conviction - and I have no intention of doing so! Rather, I respect your traditional vista in the same manner Waybread does. However, as mentioned in the aforesaid post, there is evidence on several lines of astronomical reasoning for further major planets out there. There are number of relevant scientific articles available online. Take it from me - their authors are anything but opium smokers!

Paul wrote:
Quote:
Can you explain? I am not following how Uranus assumes a role akin to the Sun for the inner planets. What is this relationship/role that is so similar? What is the role of the Sun to the inner planets (which is presumably not true for the other planets) that is similar to the role of uranus to the transsaturnians?


Well, simply, I do consider the transsaturnians as a class of their own, corresponding however to the classical planets. Since Uranus is the innermost of them, this puts him in a position comparable to the Sun's among the classical planets. O. k., you may object to this that there are seven “classics” but (in my scheme) only five transsaturnians. I have a theory regarding this, but as it is a little complex, outlining it here would go a little too far... Additionally, my statement is in keeping with Uranus being regarded as an analogous Sun based on his “radiant nature”.

May the Force be with you Smile
Michael


Last edited by Michael Sternbach on Fri May 02, 2014 10:33 pm; edited 1 time in total
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waybread



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Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 6:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul, just a refresher on Mark's OP:

Quote:
Modern astrologers confidently assert that Uranus rules Aquarius. We are taught to accept this in modern astrology schools nowadays like milk in our cornflakes. But is the logic of this view really convincing?


It becomes more plausible if not convincing, if we consider similarities between Saturn and Uranus. If we're taught to assimilate very much in modern astrology, the radical difference between Saturn and Uranus would be one precept. It has started to bother me, more and more.

I think your bewilderment about my take on Raphael comes from your assumption that I use him to bolster some argument other than the ones I have been making all along. This isn't the case.

My description of Raphael on "Herschel" was based largely on what he wrote, so that people could see how Uranus appeared in an early (the early?) treatment of it. I tried to show his logic without endorsing it. That's pretty much it.

Raphael did get me thinking, however, on whether-- despite his turgid prose-- there might be something to his alignment of Saturn and Uranus. I think there is something, but not because they are brother malefics.

If I articulate my views on Saturn and Uranus, hopefully I can clarify their joint operation.

Saturn. We could start with the possibility that both planets appear, to some, to be "cold and dry." Modern astrology would deal more with the attributes or functions of planets, and Saturn in this modern context is (metaphorically) the cosmic Bill Collector. Pay your bills on time, and normally your personal finances can go smoothly. Don't pay your bills on time, and you have a bad time with the collection agency. But really, a call from the collection agency isn't some sort of Hard Luck: bill-payment actually works in a rational fashion. Similarly, save money, and you have money in the bank. Don't save money, and the universe isn't conspiring against you when your bank account is empty. A major key word for Saturn is self-discipline.

Bad things happen to good people, and Saturn's rewards to his pupils may only be inner strength and experience, yet these are useful later in life. Saturn deals with truth: in a very material, mechanistic fashion. It has its own inexorable logic.

Uranus . Take the perspective of an American looking at the British class system of 100 years ago. On one level, it made tremendous sense to its perpetrators (of all classes) as the Natural Order of Things. To me, it sort of reeks, to build a society on hereditary privilege and poverty, using tools of hegemony to keep the lower classes in their place. There is nothing inherently rational about it.

Or take another perspective: 50 years ago, women were routinely excluded from professional schools and professions for a variety of biased reasons that later didn't hold up at all.

Uranus, then, pushes its own kind of inexorable logic. Repressive social systems are not truly logical, and are manifestly unfair. People in power see no reason to relinquish power voluntarily, unfortunately, no matter how unsound their grip on power, so this is why Uranus seems so revolutionary. I don't see Uranus as about revolutionary wars in the sense of armed conflict, as Uranus is about the arguments for a more just society, that could only be achieved through war as a last resort.

Uranus is fundamentally about extending the frontiers, whether personal or social. But if all it achieves is some sort of childish disruption for no purpose, those frontiers do not get expanded.

Saturn plus Uranus We can see in science how these work together. Uranus provides the new idea, but Saturnine discipline brings it to fruition. In engineering, Uranus thinks up the new invention, but Saturn gives it concrete form and structure. Like Icarus, humans have always wanted to fly. Uranus works out the idea of an aircraft, while Saturn tightens the nuts and bolts on it.

Of course, people sometimes experience unwanted sudden change. A man tells his thunderstruck partner that their relationship is over. A sudden accident leaves a driver badly injured. Sometimes change is good: the life-changing job offer, the unexpected piece of good luck.

Today, change is a constant part of life, in a way that was unimaginable in, say, 1400. Do you want the latest cell phone and apps? What do you think about "driverless" cars?

To return to Raphael and the negative character traits he associates with it: Uranus is sometimes associated with freedom, whether personal or social. But do you really have personal freedom if you have no options to express your individuality? To a man committed to conformity, someone who dares to express her uniqueness may appear to be dangerously out-of-line. I get a sense that Raphael was such a person.

Intriguingly, Silicon Valley was an early working environment that dropped dress codes (as meaningless) and encouraged employees to brainstorm new ideas (as profitable). Raphael might have greeted such innovations with horror.

However, some of Raphael's Uranian personality traits read better today, and might almost describe some acknowledged inventive geniuses.
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Michael Sternbach



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Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Erased by the author because solely related to a technical problem.

Last edited by Michael Sternbach on Fri May 02, 2014 10:35 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Mark
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Posted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 11:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Waybread - re: yours of Fri Mar 07, 2014 10:28 pm

Quote:
As I've said repeatedly, if people with to practice a conservative traditional astrology, that is fine with me. If astrology means anything, your horoscope might even suggest that you appreciate tradition and order; just as mine might suggest I prefer a more modern approach.


No I prefer to think I uphold the cause of truth and light against the forces of darkness! But you raise the interesting point about whether our approach to astrology is purely a matter of taste and whether our personal astrological configurations may determine our outlook. I know the London based astrologer Frank Clifford has light heartedly suggested traditional astrologers tend to have ‘Saturn issues’. Maybe a lot of moderns have Neptune issues? As an astrologer my experience confirms there is certainly something to this kind of argument.

Quote:
One unexpected insight that your thread has revealed for me, is that I would actually prefer to keep modern and traditional astrology as separate schools that nevertheless share a rich and common heritage.


I agree with you on that. Amongst tropical astrologers I think this is the most fundamental issue that separates astrologers in their delineation of charts. We may disagree on house systems, aspects, or particular niche techniques like lots, antiscia, midpoints or asteroids. However, I see this issue as effectively an unbridgeable difference. Especially,with the increasing trend in modern astrology to not even consider traditional rulers of signs. I confronted this issue in my Association lately when we discussed who should run our beginners classes. Should our teacher be an modern astrologer who only uses modern rulers or a more traditional astrologer who works with outers but uses traditional rulers? I try very hard as a Chair to not to let my personal astrological beliefs colour decisions like this but I was deeply uncomfortable that someone could be teaching astrology without any consideration given to the traditional rulers whatsoever.

There is no denying we are going to reach fundamentally different delineations based on our choice of rulership system. I know some astrologers that think that if we dropped the dogmatic labels ‘traditional’ and ‘modern’ we could let go of our perceived differences and work more collaboratively together. Personally, though I don't think this issue can be brushed under the carpet. I see this as a very practical difference in how charts are delineated not that dissimilar to the difference between tropical and sidereal astrologers. Arguably, its not as serious a division as that but it is a significant barrier to sharing a common delineation approach in charts.

Quote:
At some point in the road, however, the traditionalists took the fork to the left, and the moderns took the fork to the right.


Historically,the process was less linear than that but I take your point.

Quote:
By analogy: some people like only representational art. Others are happy with impressionist, abstract, or post-modern art. One is not objectively "good" and the other objectively "bad" because the only way that art can be judged is through the lenses of one's own subjective experience.


I prefer the music analogy such as say Classical or Jazz? However, the point is identical.

Quote:
So to me (not to you!) if I lose some traditional dignities that's OK, because the trade-off is gaining an expanded solar system.


Despite what some may think I don’t work for the astrological thought Police. If that is your take on astrology then good luck to you. All I can authentically state in reply is that this is not an approach I resonate with or choose to work with.

I don't really know what you mean about an 'expanded' solar system. In what sense? Is this a point about incorporating the trans-Neptunians?

Quote:
"My modern astrology" seems highly logical to me, but then I don't like a lot of modern astrology, either.


Its evident from this thread that what is logical to one person isn’t necessarily logical to another. I think all we can honestly do is follow the kind of astrology that makes sense to us.

Quote:
If I accuse traditional astrology of having a blinkered mentality, where does this get us?


Fair comment. I accept that was quite an intemperate way to make my point. I guess I was somewhat frustrated that you and some other modern astrologers adopted quite a defensive attitude to this thread. I had been hoping to discuss this topic of Uranus from first principles. However, I now accept that was really a very unrealistic expectation of astrologers for whom their astrological world view is based on an assumed rulership connection between Aquarius and Uranus. As someone who doesn’t see Uranus as ruling anything the issue of a Uranus association to a sign other than Aquarius carries no deep emotional charge for me. In that sense I really had nothing to lose by exploring a thought experiment with this issue. I can see the topic is a lot more threatening to those already working with a Uranus-Aquarius linkage as a given.

I suspect the feedback here is probably only a microcosm of the kind of reaction such ideas would generate in the wider astrological community! I guess challenging people’s cherished beliefs is not going to win you any popularity votes.

Update: Actually, I notice your latest reply to Paul is getting more into the kind of territory I want to discuss. We may not agree but at least we can kick some ideas around and clarify our own thinking.

Quote:
Howbeit we reconsider other sign "associations" within a traditional dignity/debility framework?


Your welcome to open a thread on this. Let me make clear I don’t accept the astrological tradition uncritically. Its important to keep an open mind and keep asking questions. Otherwise me become astro clones. I have recently been re-examining the sign quality system used in medieval astrology in relation to dignities. I think it has some internal contradictions. I therefore intend to open a thread on that topic at some point on the traditional forum when time allows.

Quote:
Should we see whether a planet in degree "x" in sign "y" is really strengthened if the planet is in its own terms?


There are actually several systems of terms/bounds/confines in traditional astrology. Most popular are those of Ptolemy and the Egyptian system. I use the Egyptian system myself simply because it seems to work better in my experience.

Quote:
I don't take the "timeline" point at all. Each of us today benefits from modern inventions (like the Internet) that didn't exist in the millenia previous to roughly 1970. We don't argue that calculations require an abacus or slide rule simply because they are older.


The timeline point is actually your point Waybread! You were using the precedent of history to support the modern rulership system. You suggested it had been working for astrologers for over a century. I countered with the antiquity of the classical rulership system.

However, I don’t base my support for traditional astrology on such arguments. If a system of astrology cannot hold up in praxis its historical precedents are irrelevant. Having said that I do wonder why astrologers would use methods that don’t work for two millennia.

Quote:
I take your point that Uranus in Aquarius should work better there if it actually rules the sign. The trouble with coming up with either mundane or genethliacal evidence is that:

1. The original affinities (dignities, debilities) were never set up as based on evidence, but rather on the basis of idealized schemtics. Then "rulership" has multiple meanings. I think Uranus thematically "rules" aviation and science, as well as Aquarian house cusps.


Another issue for traditionalists is that planets can have several rulership relationships. Curtis Manwaring made this point earlier in this thread. I would certainly be looking at the bound rulers for Uranus in signs not just the domicile ruler.

Quote:
2. Evidence from mundane of nativity astrology would really have to be couched as a large-scale study to see whether Uranus is "king of the castle" in Aquarius. We cannot be too Eurocentric in mundane astrology, for example. We have to define a whole lot of parameters and terms. We have to eliminate biases, if possible, from the study design.


I agree about the danger of cultural bias in any mundane analysis. There is also the problem of differences in historians opinions on what the key dates are. Plus what should we study? Revolutions, wars, creation of dynasties/kingdoms, intellectual and technological breakthroughs, political reform or repression? Also what of major pandemics, natural disasters, or famines? The kind of issues we select may contain an unintentional bias. The biggest bias is expecting things to be there due to our preconceptions and then only highlighting anything that fits that view.

Quote:
3. Uranus was last in Aquarius from 1996 to 2003. I would see this as a time of all kinds of technological innovation; and a time when social mores became increasingly liberalized. I note that invention or innovation dates are typically earlier than their "democratization." For example, cell phones were invented in the 1970s and 80s, but when did "everybody" get one, such that they changed society?

Before that, Uranus was in Aquarius from 1912 to 1920. Of course, this was the WW I period, but more than that, it seems like a tipping point into modernity in so many ways. American women got the vote in 1920, and shed their highly restrictive heavy clothing, to cite one example. It was a period when Americans first began to take to the road as automobiles became affordable ("democratized.) Commercial airmail became common.


Good point about extension of the franchise. A similar thing happened in Britain in 1918 with the Representation of the People's Act which gave women (over 35!) and all men the vote for the first time.

Certainly, we had revolutions that overthrew dynasties in Russia, Germany, and Austro-Hungary. We also had the Easter rising in Ireland.

But there is a darker Saturnian side to this period too. WWI was a truly epic event. This world war led to unprecedented loss of life. Ironically, new technology such as the machine gun, poison gas, and artillery bombing contributed significantly to the increased number of deaths from previous conflicts.

Almost forgotten now the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-1919 led to either slightly more or less deaths (estimates vary) than WWI and WWII combined. Probably more than 4 times the number of fatalities in WWI. This was by far the worst pandemic since the Black death.

If we start from a preconception Aquarius is all about political, social and technological progress we may ignore or sideline important things like this.

Quote:
So much of astrology is subjective, Mark!


Agreed!

Mark
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waybread



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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark, thanks for your thoughtful reply. But did I actually catch you in a more mellow mood, or what??? We actually agree on some things.

Just a couple of points, though.

I never thought of myself as having an "emotional" attachment to Uranus as the modern ruler of Aquarius. But even if I did, that would be irrelevant to the discussion. An argument has to stand or fall on its own merits, independently of whatever emotional charge someone might attach to it.

I could claim that you have an "emotional" attachment to traditional astrology, but that would be irrelevant to the question of how well it works in practice.

We could equally unprofitably engage in a discussion of whether traditional astrology worked really well for 2000 years. I suppose we could even score it like a football match. If traditional astrology could point to signal successes, one could also point to its dismal failures-- as occasionally noted by leading traditional astrologers themselves. One wonders why, if astrology worked so brilliantly, it died off in European universities-- for a variety of reasons ranging from a church ban to campus politics.

Possibly we could envision a sort of pure astrology that worked brilliantly in the hands of gifted and expert practitioners, but throughout history many astrologers have not worked at this level of expertise, and it beocmes difficult to separate the discipline from the practitioners.

Also, where a traditional astrologer might see clarity, I could point to disagreement if not confusion. Babylonian or Egyptian terms? They don't agree; and if anyone knows the origin of the terms, I would love to hear about it.

I think a lot of the ills of modern astrology developed when it was partnered with a couple of bedfellows.

Modern astrology started from a theosophical base. This was why it pruned off a lot of the praxis of traditional astrology. It wasn't trying to locate the lost cat or predict your marital status, it was trying to speed you on the pathway to spiritual enlightenment. For that, you don't need to worry about pitted degrees.

Also the ban against fortune-telling in many places was very real in the early 20th century, which discouraged the more predictive types of astrology.

Similarly psychological astrology seemed in the 1970s and 80s to bind astrology to Jungian and even Freudian theory. For that, one need only focus on those elements of astrology that parse well in the new idiom. "If it doesn't fit, you must omit."

This isn't to justify these schools of modern astrology, but hopefully to explain them.

Although my own methods are modern, I (and many of my "tribe") have little interest any more in theosophical or psychological astrology. In a very general sense, I think my approach is one that a Vettius Valens or William Lilly would have understood, which is being helpful to people with practical problems. Not psychoanalysing them or telling them they're vermischt because of past-life karma.

I don't see an either/or binary between modern and traditional. Modern astrology has vast areas of overlap with traditional astrology. I do see us as representing different schools of thought beyond the common core. I vote for a "reformed" modern astrology that honours its roots without defining itself by them, and while aligning itself more with the post-Uranus solar system that we cannot "undiscover."

I can't understand the problem with choosing an instructor based upon whether s/he uses modern or traditional sign rulers. As I noted above, I use both in natal charts, and they work just fine. A good pedagogical method, for any controversial subject, is simply to present the students with both sides of the story, and to suggest that as they learn more astrology, they will decide which one/s they prefer.

Michael, I read Jeffrey Green's boks on Pluto, about how he thinks it symbolizes the soul. I truly disagree. To some extent the entire horoscope symbolizes the soul; with particular points like the sun, MC, and NN indicating its key missions. I think Pluto is extremely important, and that it works well as the modern ruler of Scorpio. To me, Pluto is a ruthless, bullying sort of energy if it cannot be turned into a stand for self-transformation. I would describe its negative side as "soul destroying" energies, with the phoenix being its positive metaphor. Sexuality is a Mars-Venus function-- so I note Mars as the traditional ruler of Scoprio.
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Nixx



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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Should our teacher be an modern astrologer who only uses modern rulers or a more traditional astrologer who works with outers but uses traditional rulers?


I'd say neither. In this era it would surely make more sense to explore various thinkings, probably chronologically, for numerous reasons. Not least this rulership issue, a few charts might not be able to ‘resolve’ it but you should end up being able to make a much more informed choice.

It might be difficult to find someone in your area with a detailed understanding of the ideas of all the noteworthy/pivotal Western Astrologers. But presenting a broad overview of each ought not to be too much of a stretch after a bit more reading here and there.
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Michael Sternbach



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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 3:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

Mark wrote: Mar 09, 2014 12:36 am
Quote:
I know the London based astrologer Frank Clifford has light heartedly suggested traditional astrologers tend to have ‘Saturn issues’. Maybe a lot of moderns have Neptune issues?


Mark, I have to say this... contrary to what you might think in light of your last post to me, I don't consider myself simply a "modern" astrologer, I'm just as much a "traditional" one. I am modern, for example, in my understanding of the transsaturnians and the houses as closely related to the signs as well as by taking a certain psycho-spiritual approach toward astrology; but traditional in my use of equal houses, only aspects that are multiples of 30°, and occasionally lots and fixed stars (not any kind of sidereal zodiac as such).

Does this mean that I have both Saturn issues and Neptune issues? You bet! Laughing

Mark wrote: Mar 09, 2014 12:36 am
Quote:
However, I see this issue as effectively an unbridgeable difference. Especially,with the increasing trend in modern astrology to not even consider traditional rulers of signs.


Much like Waybread, I don't see the differences as that unbridgeable. I can't imagine any contemporary (Western) astrologer delineating charts exactly the way the ancients did anyway. Plus there are as many astrologies as there are astrologers, and it would seem that it has always been like this. Most astrologers are picking the raisins from astrology's rich storehouse that they personally find interesting, that makes sense to them, that gives them good results in their practice. Much like psychotherapists etc. do in their fields. And why shouldn't they?

There is just ONE universe out there that we are trying to make sense of in whatever way we can. I have yet to see a physicist who would say "I'm a Newtonian physicist" or "I'm an Einsteinian physicist", even though there is plenty of disagreement among physicists as well.

Additionally, consider that astrology, just like other sciences, has always been in a state of flux, and will continue to be.

Even as far as the seemingly all-important rulership question, Waybread and I (and no doubt many others) do well with using both the ancient and the modern system side by side.

Mark wrote: Mar 09, 2014 12:36 am
Quote:
I had been hoping to discuss this topic of Uranus from first principles.


Sorry if somehow I got you wrong - but I thought we are talking about the assignment of a rulership based on first principles here (from our individual perspectives). Inevitably, it lead us far beyond your original question re Uranus-Aries, though. There is nothing wrong with throwing an unconventional thought in, but you can't predict where it gets you (especially with Uranus being involved). Congratulations for sparking such interest that lead to one of the longest threads in the history of astrology! Thumbs up

Mark wrote: Mar 09, 2014 12:36 am
Quote:
I can see the topic is a lot more threatening to those already working with a Uranus-Aquarius linkage as a given.


Nope, I don't feel threatened. Just enjoying a good discussion. Very Happy

Waybread wrote: Mar 09, 2014 7:32 am
Quote:
I read Jeffrey Green's boks on Pluto, about how he thinks it symbolizes the soul. I truly disagree. To some extent the entire horoscope symbolizes the soul; with particular points like the sun, MC, and NN indicating its key missions.


I wouldn't say that Pluto is symbolizing the soul either, unless, perhaps, you happen to be Darth Vader. I only mentioned this because Mark stated that there are hardly any astrologers who would even see it as neutral.

Waybread wrote: Mar 09, 2014 7:32 am
Quote:
To me, Pluto is a ruthless, bullying sort of energy if it cannot be turned into a stand for self-transformation.


Thanks for illustrating my assumption that how a planet's energy expresses itself depends on how it can be integrated!

Waybread wrote: Mar 09, 2014 7:32 am
Quote:
Sexuality is a Mars-Venus function-- so I note Mars as the traditional ruler of Scoprio.


Yes, sexuality is a Mars-Venus function as well. In astromedicine, Scorpio is representing the genitals, so Scorpio's primary dispositor Pluto would have to be taken into consideration in analysing somebody's issues in this area, physically and psychologically (psychosomatically). Plus sexuality most certainly does have a plutonian side to it, not only in its "darker" aspects but also in its potential for transformation and healing.

Best wishes
Michael
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james_m



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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i find these modern/traditional boxes others like to use repellent! i like nixx's suggestion on the teaching role.
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 5:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
i find these modern/traditional boxes others like to use repellent!


Hi James,

I think you have missed the context of what I was saying above to Waybread regarding the different rulership approaches.

I am not seeking to turn this into some ideological battle or setting up modern vs traditional trenches. I interact every week with other astrologers who take completely different views to charts than I do. We look at charts together with our different outlooks and offer our insights. So in terms of actual face to face interaction with other astrologers I suggest i have a lot more experience and practical credentials on this than most solitary web based commentators here.

Naturally, the labels traditional or modern contain considerable differences within them. They are not monolithic. Waybread pointed this out regarding modern astrology and i could do the same for traditional. Plus many people are eclectic and tend to borrow techniques in magpie style.

My point to Waybread was more practical and related to astrological praxis. I was simply commentating about how a group of astrologers gathered together choose to interpret charts. Differing rulership approaches is a significant difference in my experience.

Have you ever sat in an astrology group trying to delineate a chart with people coming from these different outlooks? Its not easy at times. Especially, if you have newbies trying to follow what is going on. Its can be very confusing for them. Thats why I think beginners are really better with one teacher giving a foundation based on one approach. Otherwise people come away very confused. They can always explore other views later.

We still manage to remain one Association despite our differences. But you cant banish praxis issues like this just because they offend your personal sensibilities. Would you want people to ignore discussion of different zodiacs too because it creates 'boxes'?

However, there are other differences in the astrological community that cut across these basic technique variations which are more philosophical. Especially, those that take a divinatory approach in contrast to those that see astrology in more causal/mechanistic terms. So in philosophical terms I might have more in common with a modern astrologer who takes a divinatory outlook than a traditionalist who sees astrology working through inexorable laws of the universe.

Mark
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i get it mark.. it is like dividing everything along sexual or cultural lines too. the distinctions serve a purpose that can just as easily detract from ones purpose. it depends on the context.
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

James wrote:
Quote:
i get it mark.. it is like dividing everything along sexual or cultural lines too. the distinctions serve a purpose that can just as easily detract from ones purpose. it depends on the context.


Its true I had a specific context in mind to the problem of working together with differing rulership systems. Still, I do think this difference reflects underlying philosophical contrasts too that will be transparent to anyone following this thread.

Mark
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amelia



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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 8:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Given the extent of this thread I thought an uber-Aquarian mystery chart might be in order

http://skyscript.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?p=86930#86930
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mark wrote:
Still, I do think this difference reflects underlying philosophical contrasts too that will be transparent to anyone following this thread.
Mark


it is true the terms (mod and trad) help to point the contrasts out.. the philosophical contrasts are a good discussion point too.

let me give you an example of what i am getting at that has some meaning to me in the jazz music world. ken burns wrote a book / did a show - on the history of jazz music that essentially excluded anyone who wasn't black.. some musicians were upset about that! just yesterday a radio show that happens once a week focused on the local jazz scene did a show 'women in jazz'. the show is run by a women and if it was just a one off - i understand and think it could make for an interesting show.. unfortunately it isn't. it seems more driven by a political agenda that those who play the music really could care less about.

anyone who is interested in astrology is going to have to be open minded and consider a number of different ways of getting involved in it. the distinctions help clarify the differences, but sometimes they lose sight of the bigger picture( think virgo verses pisces) - that being to understand astrology as a language better - and how it isn't so much about the style as it is about the substance. hopefully you get my point! i am always making parallels in the music i play and the stylistic choices available and am generally turned off by those who hold to a particular attitude about what ''real jazz'' is, but offer a parallel to the 'real astrology' crowd that seem to be reaching for a type of astrological fundamentalism.. that's all! uranus is an interesting consideration in light of all this!

amelia - thanks. i look forward to finding some time to participate.
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael Sternbach wrote: Sat Mar 08, 2014 2:43 am

Quote:
I do understand the concept of a malefic carrying an "excess" of a Aristotelian quality. Nevertheless, wouldn't you agree, they are all just fine the way Nature has made them?


Hi Michael,

Well of course its all only symbolism isn't it? But in astrological terms the planets have historically been seen as having different natures. This dates back to Babylonian times before the Greeks applied Aristotelian qualities to them.

Quote:
That being said, I admit that the "malefics" sometimes have a particularly challenging or destructive effect - even though this depends on a number of factors, not the least of them being how well an individual (or collective, for that matter) is able to integrate these energies into their lifes and give them adequate expression. The name "malefic" seems to be a rather unfortunate one (pun unintended); it is bound to make people (astrologers) think of something negative! But it may be difficult to get rid of this term, for historical reasons.


Its true in our culture the word doesn’t go down to well with many. But I feel modern western culture has an excessively libertarian/free will view on everything. These ideas developed in cultures that took a more fated view of destiny. While I am not an ancient Greek/Roman I find some aspects of their outlook not too dissimilar to my own. I am influenced by Buddhist philosophy and the Stoic and Neo-Platonist outlooks have some interesting parallels.

Mark wrote:
Quote:
Secondly, though, this is only a generalised position. We always need to take account of the specific circumstances of each chart . Numerous things can transform a natural benefic into an accidental malefic. Hence we look at essential dignity and reception, aspectual contacts, house placement and rulership, planetary phase , sect etc. From all this a so called natural benefic like say Jupiter can end up operating in quite a malefic ie destructive manner in a chart. So the traditional outlook is a good deal more subtle than many seem to realise.


Michael Sternbach wrote:
Quote:
I, for one, do realise this. Actually, this is exactly what I wrote. Of course, in the traditional scheme this modification by circumstances applies to "benefics" as well as "malefics" - so why not consider both of them rather neutral in the first place?


I think you are missing my point that both 1 &2 need to be worked with together (from my perspective). Traditionally, Saturn and Mars start off as natural malefics in contrast to your starting point that all planets are basically neutral in operation to start. Where we agree is that these starting points are modified by what traditionalists call ‘accidental’ considerations. For example as the greater malefic Saturn has more destructive potential than Jupiter. For example, when Jupiter lacks dignity it weakens its protective potential. However, as a benefic its destructive potential is less than Saturn. In the traditional view nothing is as destructive as a debilitated malefic in a powerful placement by house/angle.

Mark wrote:
Quote:
... in practical terms I think relatively few modern astrologers would go quite as far as you and suggest that all planets are effectively 'common' or neutral to start with ... I have yet to hear anyone describe Pluto as ‘neutral’ ... Ok people may have a more psychological understanding of how this planet operates but if this planet isn’t regarded as a malefic I don’t know what is.


Michael Sternbach wrote:
Quote:
either do I! Therese recently wrote to me that in “Evolutionary Astrology” Pluto is equated with the soul.

http://skyscript.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=8106

I agree with her that this seems to go a little too far, though. But consider: No Pluto = no putrefaction (dead bodies of all species lying around everywhere – yuck!). No sex life!!! No Mickey Mouse comics! At least in the modern astrological understanding. - Sure enough, Pluto's lectures are rather harsh sometimes.


Mark wrote: Fri Mar 07, 2014 2:41 pm
Quote:
The problem I have with your perspective here is that the classical rulership system wasn’t understood as being based on the geocentric placement of planets. It was based on how the other signs (and by implication their rulers) related to the signs of the two luminaries i.e. Leo + Cancer.


Michael Sternbach wrote:
Quote:
Believe me, I have given a lot of consideration to the traditional rulership system. No matter how the ancients commented about it, the fact remains that there are always two planets of opposite (complementary) nature facing each other in this diagram. Which obviously corresponds with their order in the geocentric (Ptolemaic) system in the manner which I have outlined:

Moon (innermost) - Saturn (outermost)
Mercury (second innermost) - Jupiter (second outermost)
Venus (third innermost) - Mars (third outermost)

However, the Sun occupies the central orbit in the geocentric system (that would be the fourth, independent from where you start counting).


Michael Sternbach wrote
Quote:
The two symbolical snakes fitted into the zodiac, one belonging to the Sun, the other to the Moon, once again bestow pivotal roles to the Luminaries, much in the way they own in the classical system.


Ok. For me that analogy is far too abstract. Its clever I grant you though. But it really only incorporates the luminaries in quite an indirect way. The classical system has them at its very core. Moreover, it relates to nature in a way your argument doesn't.

Incidentally, can I just clarify are these ideas your theory or those of Rafael Gil Brand you have adopted? In your original post of Sun Mar 02, 2014 4:03 pm you seem to attribute a lot of these ideas to him and his article Lehrbuch der klassischen Astrologie?

Its not a theory I am likely to adopt myself but this re-working of rulerships you suggest is very thought provoking.


To quote from your original post of Sun Mar 02, 2014 4:03 pm

Michael Sternbach wrote
Quote:
I have found strong evidence that the classical planets that were formerly exclusively ruling these signs should still be considered co-rulers. For reasons of symmetry, it could be argued that Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto should then be co-rulers of Capricorn, Sagittarius, and Aries. This is an area open to research.


So you see Uranus as a co-ruler of both Aquarius and Capricorn! What evidence do you have then for Uranus co-ruling Capricorn with Saturn?

I suppose this arrangement means you only require two more planetary bodies to assign co-rulers to all the non-luminary signs.

Michael Sternbach wrote
Quote:
Now, the order given still holds if you switch to a heliocentric perspective - except that the Earth and the Sun exchange their positions. And, of course, the Moon falls out of the picture altogether as it is circling around the Earth. For reasons of symmetry, in the heliocentric model, an innermost circle may be substituted for the Moon's, belonging to the planet Vulcan (no, not Mr. Spock's home world). I hear some of you exclaiming: What else is Michael going to throw in?! However... such a body in the vicinity of the Sun has been sighted by a number of astronomers in history, but was always lost again - so it could never be confirmed. Nevertheless, many astronomers state good reasons for the existence of one or several small bodies orbiting the Sun very closely; they call them vulcanoids. In recent times, there are great efforts being made to observe them, involving the use of telescopes on plains and satellites. Once one of them will be established as a fact, it conceivably may be named Vulcan. For what it's worth, consider that notable esotericists like Steiner, Bailey, and Cacey included Vulcan in their systems. So from a heliocentric perspective, Vulcan (or a system of vulcanoids) would replace the Moon as a "counterpoise" to Saturn. - But this would be a theme for another thread.


I have to express scepticism on your hopes for another planet between Mercury and the Sun. Astronomers pretty much abandoned the idea of a large planetary body in this zone around WWW1. There might be some tiny objects there but the chances of another undiscovered planet there seems very slim.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vulcan_(hypothetical_planet)

What about Ceres? It’s the only spherical asteroid and the largest by far. Plus astronomers consider it a dwarf planet. Not sure what sign it would tie in best to though.

Mark
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Posted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Michael Sternbach replied Sun Mar 09, 2014 3:11 pm
Quote:
Mark, I have to say this... contrary to what you might think in light of your last post to me, I don't consider myself simply a "modern" astrologer, I'm just as much a "traditional" one. I am modern, for example, in my understanding of the transsaturnians and the houses as closely related to the signs as well as by taking a certain psycho-spiritual approach toward astrology; but traditional in my use of equal houses, only aspects that are multiples of 30°, and occasionally lots and fixed stars (not any kind of sidereal zodiac as such).


Hi Michael,

I am not setting myself up as the astrological arbiter here on who can use what label. If you want to call yourself a traditional astrologer its your choice. I cant ban you and take away your membership of some traditional astrological guild. Smile

However, if language is to mean anything is has to set some definitions and parameters. For example, if I call myself a vegetarian but eat fish and chicken I am pushing past the boundaries of the general understanding of that term. For me at least your approach is not traditional because it rejects one of the foundations of classical astrology which is its rulership system.

I accept the word traditional has meant different things at different times. A few decades ago ‘traditional astrology’ often referred to the astrology of people like Alan Leo, Charles Carter or Ronald C Davidson in contrast to modern or psychological astrology.

However, in the English speaking astrological community today the term ‘ traditional astrology’ is seen as relating to medieval, renaissance and early modern astrology. More recently hellenistic astrological ideas have also been included under this umbrella term. While you may have been influenced by some ideas in that period your rejection of the basic rulership scheme puts your approach in a different category as I see it. Your clearly eclectic and do use some classical ideas but that in itself doesn't make a traditional (or neo-traditional) astrologer as I see it. If you disagree though thats fine. Its hardly a life and death issue either way.

Quote:
Much like Waybread, I don't see the differences as that unbridgeable. I can't imagine any contemporary (Western) astrologer delineating charts exactly the way the ancients did anyway. Plus there are as many astrologies as there are astrologers, and it would seem that it has always been like this. Most astrologers are picking the raisins from astrology's rich storehouse that they personally find interesting, that makes sense to them, that gives them good results in their practice. Much like psychotherapists etc. do in their fields. And why shouldn't they?


I think I clarified the practical difficulties I have experienced in my reply to James. The fact astrologers may be frequently eclectic doesn’t exclude the fact we have basic working principles that unite or separate us in practical terms. In my view choice of zodiac or rulership scheme are such issues.

Quote:
There is just ONE universe out there that we are trying to make sense of in whatever way we can. I have yet to see a physicist who would say "I'm a Newtonian physicist" or "I'm an Einsteinian physicist", even though there is plenty of disagreement among physicists as well.

Additionally, consider that astrology, just like other sciences, has always been in a state of flux, and will continue to be.


I don’t consider contemporary astrology as a science Michael so I dont really go with your basic assumption here. However, that discussion is really a topic on its own.

As I see it divination like astrology doesn't need to 'modernize' because it is based on symbolic or magical principles.

Quote:
Even as far as the seemingly all-important rulership question, Waybread and I (and no doubt many others) do well with using both the ancient and the modern system side by side.


Well fine. I used it for some years and was not satisfied with the results. However, that was my experience not yours. Ultimately, we all work with the approach that we personally resonate with and we perceive is working the best. Our choice of astrological tool kits are obviously different. Arguing this out any further is pointless in my view.

Mark wrote:
Quote:
I had been hoping to discuss this topic of Uranus from first principles.


Quote:
Sorry if somehow I got you wrong - but I thought we are talking about the assignment of a rulership based on first principles here (from our individual perspectives). Inevitably, it lead us far beyond your original question re Uranus-Aries, though. There is nothing wrong with throwing an unconventional thought in, but you can't predict where it gets you (especially with Uranus being involved). Congratulations for sparking such interest that lead to one of the longest threads in the history of astrology!


I don’t think anyone can really accuse me of seeking to dictate the course of this thread. If I did I obviously failed miserably! What I meant was hoping people might see this thread as more of an open ended thought experiment. Hence to have a discussion without an automatic presumption this was a debate on whether Uranus ruled (or co-ruled) Aquarius.

However, if you had included all my quote rather than just the sentence above you would see I came to realise the idea of excluding that Uranus=Aquarius outlook was highly unrealistic of me. And as you suggest it was also unreasonable as one can hardly make a case for one planet-sign association without giving others the opportunity to set out a contrary view.

Moreover, as I uphold a traditional outlook myself it could certainly be suggested I was just as wedded to a preconceived viewpoint on this issue as any modern astrologer would be.

Now you have added to the pot the idea of Uranus co-ruling Capricorn so I am very intrigued to see your argument to support this. It does seem quite counter-intutive to me.

Mark
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