The Lots of the Luminaries – Part 2

Some Thoughts on Spirit and Fortune: What’s the Difference?

Most sources tell how these Lots are calculated. Some explain further, how, for example, the Lot of Fortune was a potential candidate to be the hyleg in length of life calculations. There are a few sources where we can actually learn about how these two important Lots were delineated.

Vettius Valens[2] is one of the few that takes great pains to describe these Lots. He quotes from an earlier text when discussing the Lot of Fortune,

For him who wishes to ascertain the matter of happiness more exactly, I will return to the Lot of Fortune, which is the most necessary and sovereign place, as the king[3] mysteriously explained beginning in the 12th book saying,

“. . . for those who are born in the day, it will next be necessary to count distinctly from the Sun to the Moon and back from the Hōroskopos to prescribe an equality, and for the resulting place to see whatever star it meets with [conjoins], and what or which are in relation to it [i.e. aspects it] – – the squares or triangles, all in all, as it was placed among the stars. For from this consciousness of places you can make a clear judgement beforehand of the circumstances of those who are brought forth.”

Petosiris also explained the matter similarly in the Boundaries’, though others have treated it differently, which we will also set out in the appropriate place along with other guidance for clarifying the argument concerning happiness. But for now we must discuss the method in question.[4]

For in the 13th book, after the prooemium and the disposition of the zōidia, the king attacks the Lot of Fortune from the Sun, the Moon, and the Hōroskopos, which he mostly works with and makes mention of throughout the whole book, and which he judges to be a supreme place. Concerning the Lot of Fortune, he has indeed presented the inversion and reversal as a riddle.[5]

It would appear from Valens comment, “which he mostly works with”, that this earlier sage worked primarily from the Lot of Fortune indicating something of its former importance. Very inaccurately, many today call these the Arabic Parts. They are not Arabic and in fact, pretty much all of the lots the Arabic Era astrologers used were from a much earlier period.[6] But especially the Lot of Fortune is very old in origin.

There are other sources such as Paulus Alexandrinus who wrote:

And fortune signifies everything that concerns the body, and what one does through the course of life. It becomes indicative of possessions, reputation and privilege.

Spirit happens to be lord of soul, temper, sense and every capability, and there are times when it cooperates in the reckoning about what one does.[7]

When we come to the Arabic Era, Abu Ma’shār writes extensively on the Lots in the 8th treatise of his “Greater Introduction”,

This lot [Fortune] is called the lot of well-being [happiness], and it signifies those same things that are signified by the luminaries. But the peculiar qualities that it signifies are those things that concerns the soul (nafs): its fortune and its vigour and what concerns the life and the body and wealth and the poverty, gold and silver, those things which are easy and those difficult, praise and reputation, on recognition and the authority which one is born to, the support, the reign, the power, the elevation and all things which are desirable. It signifies moreover that which is present and that which is absent; that which is manifest and that which is hidden . . . This lot is first above the other lots in the same way that the Sun prevails in splendor on all stars and it is the highest and noblest of the lots.

Bonatti, later in the 14th century, paraphrases Abu Ma’shār’s earlier work and writes in his “Liber Astronomiae”,

The extraction of the pars fortunae is extracted from the luminaries, which, as the ancients said, are of equal strength for good . . . And this part is preferred above all the other parts in the same way as the luminaries are preferred above all the other stars. Similarly, the Sun is more splendid than all the other stars and called the diurnal luminary because day occurs by his rising and is removed and made night by his setting. The Sun signifies the natural life and the other things, which have been discussed in the chapter on his signification, and the Moon is the luminary of the night and the benefic significatrix of bodies and of all things, just as was said elsewhere in her chapter . . .. This part signifies the life, the body, and also its souls, its strength, fortune, substance and profit, that is: wealth and poverty, gold and silver, heaviness or lightness of things bought in the marketplace, praise and good reputation, and honours and recognition, good and evil, present and future, hidden and manifest, and it has signification over everything.[8]

In order to clearly distinguish the differences and similarities between Fortune and Spirit, I would like to start by examining two quotes from Vettius Valens’ “Anthology”.

Whence the Lot of Fortune and the Spirit will have much power over the imposing and turning back of actions. For, the one [Fortune] shows matters concerning the body and handicrafts, the Spirit and its ruler, matters concerning the soul and the intellect, and actions through discourse and through giving and receiving. It will be necessary, then, to consider in what kind of zōidia [sign] the places [topical houses] and their rulers are, and to combine the natures of these zōidia for the determination of action and fortune, and for the kind of action.[9]

Actions,[10] then, are always taken especially from [the lot of] Spirit and its ruler. For there are some who have bodily actions such as working with their hands and bodily afflictions as a result of bearing burdens or exercise, and others [who have actions] from speech and knowledge and actualisations of the soul. Wherever more stars should incline,[11] whether to the lot [of Fortune] or to [the lot of] Spirit, [from] thence will be indicated the matter of action. It is necessary, then, to compare the actions and the general support, whether the nativity is notable or mediocre, or else happy or poor, or in dispute or irregular, so that the effects in the distributions should also become clear ahead of time.[12]

In the first citation, Valens tells us that both Fortune and Spirit are essential to, or have much power over, a person’s actions or “what they do” [the greater praxis]. He tells us that there are two essential distinctions:

  1. Fortune and its ruler signify matters concerning the body, bodily actions and “handicrafts” and the “qualities of the soul”. He further elucidates what he means in the second citation by emphasizing, “…such as working with their hands and bodily afflictions as a result of bearing burdens or exercise”. There is the direct connection between a person’s physical well-being and skills producing actions that are either fortunate or unfortunate.
  2. Spirit and its ruler signify matters concerning intellect and ‘actualisations’ of the soul (will). In the second citation, he further explains that Spirit produces actions originating in the intellect, speech, knowledge, and what he calls “actualisations of the soul”, what we call ‘the will’.

In order to clearly understand what is meant, since both the significance of Fortune and Spirit directly imposes or hinders actions, then, we perhaps need to examine a little closer what ideas the Greek word for action, praxis, is conveying. Praxis is an awkward word. Grabbing hold of it is difficult because it sounds so much like ‘practice’ and ‘practical’. All these words are of course related. In its most general sense, it did mean the actual experience of doing particular activities, which is the sense of the word used in the English translation.

Valens, like the Stoics, Aristotle and Epicurus, accepted the principle laid down by Plato that all action is goal-directed, having a purpose or serving a purpose, and is undertaken in order to get something worth having for the agent or to avoid something it would be better not to have.

In its greater sense, praxis meant the process of doing things or of putting into effect and it included almost any activity which stood open to a free man of that time and it excluded from this wide frame only the manual labour connected with the work of the slave and to a certain degree, of course, also the theoretical activities of thinking, reflecting, and “gazing” or theoria.

Seen more precisely though, a further distinction between actions[13] was made by Aristotle in his Nicomacean Ethics, which has enormous bearing on our topic. In it, he makes a distinction which he calls praxis and poiesis. Poiesis represented a productive making, which means the artistic production and manufacture of goods and/or works, and the efficient management of concrete tasks. It was characterized by a type of technical (techno) knowledge, skill or ability (a.k.a. qualities of the soul). Praxis, on the other hand, referred to responsible, self-determined, ideal-guided action (doing), as is manifested for example in political or religious life. In this kind of action, praxis has qualities not necessarily found in poiesis.

Poietic actions always aim at a result, a product—the manufactured object—and its meaning and value are determined only to the doer by the outcome.

 Praxis actions, on the other hand, always carry their meaning and value in the act. They fulfill their purpose only when “something good and just” is done, something that is greater than the merit to the individual acting. The greater purpose is independent of whether or not the action actually also succeeds in reaching what was wanted through the doing.

For example, building a bridge represents poietic action whose value is determined only by its result: the built bridge over which one can cross a ravine. On the other hand, a gift donated to the needy out of compassionate, brotherly love is good, even if for some reason it never reaches those for whom it was intended.

Let’s try and put these distinctions in terms that are more current. The recording studio technicians’ actions are to make a recording that is in itself both worthy to sell and is a reflection of his personal aptitude and technical skills. This is poietic action. On the other hand is the musician who is creating the music, the actualisations of the qualities of his soul, intellect and communicative processes. The music carries its worth in its making and it is directed for the “good” and “pleasure” of others! This is praxis action.

In these distinctions, we also find the essential differences between the significations of the Lot of Fortune (poiesis) and the Lot of Spirit (praxis) and the actions (the greater praxis) imposed or hindered by them.

Valens appears to simply reiterate Aristotle’s distinctions in the second citation when he says, “Actions, then, are always taken especially from [the lot of] Spirit and its ruler”. This is as Aristotle distinguishes in Nicomacean Ethics;

Choice is the starting point of action: it is the source of motion but not the end for the sake of which we act [praxis] . . . The starting point of choice, however, is desire and reasoning directed toward some end. That is why there cannot be choice either without intelligence and thought or without some moral characteristic [hexis]; for good and bad action in human conduct is not possible without thought and character. Now thought alone moves nothing; only thought which is directed to some end and concerned with action can do so.[14]

In both types of action, choice is the starting point. But the inherent difference is that praxis includes such motivational distinctions as character, human conduct, social awareness and that the end of the action is for some good greater than the individual. With poiesis, choice and the motivation for choice do not require any particular conviction, moral or otherwise – only necessity and desire. Praxis on the other hand requires these other convictions to set it in motion. Following Aristotle, Valens saw this type action as the most important action!

The Greek philosophy proposed an interaction/transformation of “matter” to “form”.[15] The Sun was attributed to “sameness” [nous] and the Moon was “otherness”.  The Sun was archetypically seen as the perfect thought of Divine Intelligence while the moon was seen as the form that thought took which was something “other” than pure thought.  Quite simply, the Sun represented “spirit” and the Moon “physical manifestation”.  The cyclic change of seasons was considered one of the best examples of this.

The extraction of these Lots is from these individual parts, i.e. the Sun, the Moon and the Ascendant. The Sun was the author of life, the natural vitality or natural life, actualisations of the soul, eminence, reputation and honours. The Moon was more than just physical life, it was the soul incarnated in a physical body; the author of generation and corruption of all bodies (material form), and the Ascendant is the native’s physical body and qualities of the soul. When we consider then either the Lot of Fortune or Spirit, we are considering the native’s life and its well-being, his actions and how the qualities of the soul ultimately translated into such things as a native’s wealth and reputation and what one is endowed with in order to obtain those things.

The Part of Fortune is the Lot of the Moon and closely associated with the Moon and the physical manifestations. It was regarded as just what made a person not only happy but successful or unsuccessful, eminent or unknown, and was an indication of physical illnesses.

The Part of Spirit was associated to the Sun and therefore more interested in the “why” we do things, the action of doing, the moral convictions (or lack of them), will, character and the intellectual state as well as the related illnesses.

The Lot of Fortune then, originating in the Divine Will and executed through relational proportions of the planets, is a passive process setting parameters wherein the “source of motion” [choice] is influenced in regards to the physical and material actions of the native and what they can and cannot produce. It either “imposes or turns back” the realm of purely material actions. It will give significations for health, wealth, profession, eminence, reputation and all material things that profit the native physically and materially.

In like manner, the Lot of Spirit sets parameters influencing actions. These actions are vitally different carrying their significations and values in the act and fulfill their purpose only when something is done that is greater than the merit to the individual acting. Like the Lot of Fortune, Spirit will also give significations relevant to health, wealth, profession etc. –But with this difference; it will be useful in determining motivation distinctions such as character, human conduct, and social awareness telling us something of the actualisations[16] of the qualities of the natives’ soul, intellect and discourse!

 

[2] Born 125 C.E. died ca 175 C.E. A contemporary of Ptolemy he wrote a massive compendium consisting of 12 treatises on Greek Astrology. It is probably the largest Greek astrological text still extant from this period. He offers over 135 astrological charts and delineations that he says he himself made.

[3] This “king” is believed to be Nechepso, the Egyptian pharaoh who presumably wrote an important astrological textbook along with Petosiris between 200 – 400 B.C.E

[4] Section 3 of Book 2 – – “The Anthology” – – by Vettius Valens, translated by Robert Schmidt and published by The Golden Hind Press 1994 (Project Hindsight)

[5] Section 11 of Book 3 – – “The Anthology” – – by Vettius Valens, translated by Robert Schmidt and published by The Golden Hind Press 1994 (Project Hindsight)

[6] There are some lots that are very special exceptions. Those were primarily dealing with mundane astrology, the rise and fall of religions and dynasties and their prophets and kings. Those appear to be of either a Persian or a Babylonian origin and extracted specifically for mundane considerations. Al Bīrūnī considered that some astrologers took extracting Lots too extreme.

[7] Chapter 23 – “Late Classical Astrology: Paulus Alexandrinus and Olympiodorus” – translated by Dorian Gieseler Greenbaum, M.A. – published by ARHAT

[8] Mathematici de Astronomia Tractus X universum quod judiciariam rationem nativitatum or simply Bonatti on the Arabic Parts as translated by Robert Zoller © 2000 New Library Limited.

[9] Book II, section 20 – The Anthology – by Vettius Valens, translated by Robert Schmidt – Golden Hind Press © 1994

[10] Praxis – ‘what one does’

[11] This is a criterion for determining whether the Lot of Fortune or the Lot of Spirit should be used for ‘activities’. The astronomical term ‘incline’ means to approach, in other words to apply to [aspectually or by conjunction].

[12] Book IV, section 7 – The Anthology – by Vettius Valens, translated by Robert Schmidt – Golden Hind Press © 1996

[13] What I will refer to as the greater praxis

[14] EN 1139a31-36

[15] What we call individuation today!

[16] ac•tu•al•ize -ized¿, -izingvt.

1          to make actual or real; realize in action

2          to make realistic

ac¿tu•al•i•za¿tionn.

Webster’s New World Dictionary ©1995 Zane Publishing, Inc.   ©1994, 1991, 1988 Simon & Schuster, Inc.

The Lots of the Luminaries – Part 1

The Astrological Signification of the Lots

Now you are probably wondering, “What does astrological influence have to do with this study of the Hermetic Lots?” The answer is simply, everything!

Understanding the signification, application and delineation of these Lots begins with understanding them in the context in which they were conceived. Otherwise, they become totally useless and irrelevant and why reformist astrologers virtually abandoned their use altogether with the exception of one, the Part of Fortune, and that one with doubts!

The problems we’re faced with are difficult. As with the planets, the ancients never directly address the issues of just what the purely essential natures of the Lots are. With the planets, we have practical lists of their significations (as in Al Bīrūnī, Ibn Ezra, and William Lilly) or just a purely materialist physical description of their elemental natures such as in Ptolemy.

We are faced with much the same problem with the Lots. We are told of their existence, how to extract them, when and where to extract them, and for what purpose they are extracted. Only superficially, in practical demonstration, are we given any indication of where they get their essential natures, what those natures are and how and why they have a signification for a native through the natal constellation. This is why it is important to understand the nature of astrological influences and the philosophy attached to their conception.

We must look to the context of the philosophy in which the Hermetic Lots were conceived. This was the philosophy of the Platonists, and Hermeticists. As I briefly explained, this philosophy asserts that influence is NOT exclusively natural physical laws but rather that the natural physical laws are evidence of the power and influence originating on the level of the Divine Intelligence and Will, in the supercelestials (the Empyrean), and is given its form in the material world conforming to the active Will of the Creator.

The conceptual influence of the Lots is not the result of natural materialistic laws. The power of the Lots originates on the level of Divine Intelligence and Will. In this case, however, their substance receives its form as mathematical proportions of the differing active essential natures of the planets involved in their extraction.

To get to the heart of this matter I would like to look to the fourth century Byzantine astrologer, Firmicus Maternus.

 [12] Now that we have carefully explained the course of the Moon, let us turn to the discussion we promised in this work, namely, the explanation of Fortune. We cannot explain the essence of Fate unless that place is investigated carefully. We must consider the Part of Fortune with as much care as all the other points in the chart; I shall point out easily how it is discovered. When you find it, observe the combinations and aspects of all the planets and then you will be able to understand the uses of the Part of Fortune.[1]

With these words, Firmicus introduces the reader to the importance of the Lot of Fortune. There are a couple of essentials in his opening words. First, he tells the reader that you cannot explain the essence of Fate unless the Lot of Fortune is examined carefully. What is the essence of Fate? At the beginning of Project Hindsight’s’ efforts at recovering the astrological record of the Hellenistic Era, Robert Schmidt wrote an article that dealt with this concept of the essence of fate in Greek philosophy. It is worth quoting here.

 Fate, what the Greeks called Moira, is perhaps best understood in this context as a cosmic principle of binding apportionment, at work both in the heavens and on Earth. It does not make a man a man, or a planet a planet, or in any way constitute the essences of things; thus, it is not a metaphysical principle in the sense that it concerns being as being. Instead, it takes as its province what is generally regarded as contingent or accidental — matters that were excluded from serious philosophical consideration by the Athenian philosophers themselves as being ultimately unintelligible. It is Moira that makes a man such and such: dark-haired rather than light-haired, wealthy rather than poor, healthy rather than ill, and so on. Moira is a principle of apportionment in that it counts out, divides, or distributes. From all the possible events that can befall human beings, Moira selects and distributes to each individual his or her “due portion.” It is also Moira that measures out the span of the individual human life and arranges that the appropriate events happen in “due time.” At the same time, Moira is a principle of recombination and synthesis. It binds together the various allotments in the different areas of the individual’s life into a whole. From this point of view, a human life is a “package deal.” Ultimately, the triumphs in one’s life only make sense when we consider the tragedies, the peaks when we consider the valleys. The various events in a given human life can be truly bound into a whole only if they are binding on a given individual — that is, if Moira attaches to him or her, a destiny. Thus, from this point of view, the ultimate meaning of an individual human life is inextricably bound up with the fate concept.

 Relative to human beings, the planets are the instruments of Moira… However, the stars and planets are themselves no less subject to Moira than human beings. For instance, it is Moira that divides the ecliptic circle into twelve signs and apportions to each its own unique astrological role in the cosmic soul, which constitutes its own destiny. Without the operation of Moira, the zodiac is simply a continuous band of space without any obvious beginning or end, lacking any astrological meaning. But it is also Moira that recombines the signs of the zodiac into a system, so that they may be related to each other according to the triplicities, quadruplicities, etc.[2]

The Greek word for ‘lot’ is klēros (plural klēroi). This word means ‘lot’ in the sense of an allotment or apportionment. It is essentially synonymous with moira which also means ‘lot’ and ‘fate’. If we want to understand the essence of fate, or “binding apportionment”, the essence of Divine Will that apportions the accidents and circumstances that make an individual’s life unique, then we must understand the significance of the Lots in the nativity. As Robert Schmidt explains, “It binds together the various allotments in the different areas of the individual’s life into a whole.”

With this thought in mind, let us consider one of the oldest extant Astrological texts we have,

 Thy mind well purg’d from vainer cares compose, for now my Muse is eager to disclose, the nicest secrets; which observ’d, impart Fates laws, and prove the surest guides to Art…

 …Our studies, poverty, wealth, joy and grief, with all the other accidents of life she parcels out; to proper stars confines the Lots [apportionments], in equal number to the signs. These graced with proper names and place contain the various fortunes incident to man…

 … when the birth’s first minute hath decreed the first Lot’s station, then the rest succeed in following signs; each fortune takes its seat in proper order, till the round’s complete…

 … These Lots which thus decreed to signs contain the various fortunes incident to man; As planets join with a malignant ray, or <like> kind; or as the rolling skies convey to different Hinges,[3] so the Fortune spreads, and well or ill the whole design succeeds…

 … Fortune’s the first: This name our art bestows and what it signifies the title shows. Where house is found for all that may conduce to house, either for ornament or use. What train of servants, what extent of field shall aid the birth or give him room to build: When large foundations may to houses, roof’d if friendly planets aid…[4]

With verse, Marcus Manilius introduces the reader to the Lot of Fortune, the chart it produces and the fortunes that are bound together as the result of its significance, “the Fortune spreads, and well or ill the whole design succeeds.”  The Lot of Fortune, the sign it was allotted, and the planet that ruled it was what bound all of the subsequent fortunes (Fortuna houses) to the native and the nativity.

 And since my venturous Muse hath bound in rhyme, the various labors of the round of time,…Which to the twelve Lots conveniently assign’d determine all the Fortune of mankind… But lest you should imperfect schemes complete, now justly suit each labor to its seat; first find the place by Fortune’s Lot possessed, (Fortune the first, and leader of the rest) that done, to following signs in order join the Lots, and give each labor to its sign:[5]

It appears to me that these lots, Fortune and Spirit, work in ways that guide and direct the apportionment of circumstances concerning actions; sometimes seemingly appointing what the nativity seems incapable of producing.

The binding of an individual’s destiny[6] is through the Lots and they signify the actions imposed or hindered of each person and the execution is performed through the planets in the signs and houses! In other words, without the essential signification of these lots, an individual life has no cohesive meaning; it is just a random and inconsequential series of events. And the two Lots most strongly signifying this “binding apportionment” are the Lots of Fortune and Spirit! This is why, secondly, Firmicus tells the reader, “We must consider the Part of Fortune with as much care as all the other points in the chart.” The words that are important are, “with as much care”!

[1] Book IV, chapter XVI – “Matheseos Libri VIII”  – By Firmicus Maternus – translated by Jean Rhys Bram and published by Astrology Classics

[2] “The Facets of Fate: The Rationale Underlying the Hellenistic System of Houses”by Robert Schmidt

[3] I.e., to different angles or pivots

[4] Book III, Chapters 1-3 – Astronomica – by Marcus Manilius (c. 10 – 20 AD)  and translated by Thomas Creech 1697 AD

[5] Ibid

[6] Destiny in this sense is the total of the circumstances and events that are unique to each individual. The topics of “Destiny” are common to all men, that of the 12 houses, but they are unique in experience to each individual; what the medieval authors called “accidents”.

War in Heaven

Hieronymus_Bosch_073War in Heaven
Hyeronymus Bosch

 

The recent thoughts of Pablo Ianiszewski F.  in ISCA has motivated me to write, after a long period of silence while busy writing my last book.

I have raised a few points which, if they are not true,  certainly they are worth to be discussed.

In my ancient studies of astrology I tended to see the planets as the primary causation of the facts . Malefic planets caused harm, the benefics, benefits.

But after years, I have approached a non-causal, a more synchronic view of the events. The understanding of this synchronicity, if it can be sought in the celestial configuration, will not occur because the planets cause harm or blessings on earth.

I would like to point out that I agree with my colleague Pablo Ianiszewsky. An excess of  heat or cold is not conducive to the development of life. This is not under discussion.

Probably the fact that some planets are more distant from the Sun, the creator of life, led the astrologers to divide them in their basic characteristics. The more distant from the Sun  the  more malefics would the planets turn out.  Jupiter is an exception, probably because it has an affinity with Sagittarius which  makes a trigon with the Sun, the diurnal luminar, and with Pisces which makes a sextile with the Moon, the nocturnal light. The mix of aspects with luminaries, added to the distance of the Sun, must have influenced the ancients in their classifications in hot, cold, wet and dry.

This ground raises many questions that I do not want to discuss here, but one thing perhaps may be quite interesting to have in mind i.e. that  such classification depends on the human view of the elements, and it changes culturally, as we can see in the Eastern philosophy in which the element wood or metal also have room.

What I really would like to bring about in these few lines is that the intrinsic planetary essence goes far beyond the earth and that we know nothing about the planets, which are beings, each of them having their own inscrutable cosmic purpose and having to seek it far beyond the pettiness of our little world.

My view is that, we, as human inhabitants of this part of the universe, the earth, embedded in one of the hundreds of galaxies, depending essentially of the Sun, the principle of all life, tend to classify the visible planets according to the effect they cause to us.

I remember that Alchabitius saw Saturn esoterically as the first planet to which all the others follow. He says that Saturn is the first to operate on conception after the shedding of semen in the womb, contracting and unifying the matter with which the being is formed. Also in the Poimandres, it is said that the soul descends through the celestial spheres. Rudolf Steiner followed more or less this tone, when he explained that the soul comes from the universe and creates the skeleton through Saturn, until arriving at Venus that beautifies the flesh and finally reaches the Moon, rounding of the forms, shortly before the birth.

Much is supposed, but nothing is known for certain about planets and their intrinsic nature.

I have more and more the impression that the planets are not concerned with events on earth, but with their own interplanetary relationships.

I have raised the hypothesis that the chaotic or harmonic events that we experience have to do with the way the planets treat each other.

Evil derives from the evil way that one planet deals with  the other in a specific structure and this is reflected in efects  on earth, in a specular way, as it happens in the entire universe.

For example, if Mars attacks Jupiter, without mutual reception and especially being in a higher position, that is, considering as the majority of astrologers, that the planet in higher position is the one in the right, events will happen according to the nature of both, but the massacre will be especially bloody for everything that represents justice.

If things go the other way, and Jupiter is in a position above Mars, the result would be the victory over criminals, smashed by justice.

By this I mean that a square, just to name a kind of aspect, has a different meaning if one planet has a superior position in relation to the other. This explains the fact that there are squares that come to good and others that come to evil.

Even the trigons, an aspect of friendship, in a case where a malefic is one making the aspect, can have a paltry result if the malefic is in a superior position.

It is as if one o the planets falls from the high smashing the one beneath him.

I will quote one fresh example, a fact that happened today in my country, when our president, visibly suspected of criminality, was released by the court to follow his mandate, instead of suffering an impeachment.

Let me explain: Jupiter in Libra occupied the the 7th house, Libra, when the Sun entered in Cancer. Saturn, the ruler of the MC,  was cadent and retrograde,  occupying the 9th house.

Jupiter was then in a superior position, so we could imagine that ethics should prevail and this is a possiblle way to understand retrogradation: Saturn was walking towards Jupiter. This movement between planets in strong reception is always surprising, because turns out the lower planet pretty active  in his movement towards the other. Faced with the deep relationship between the two, one planet in the sign of the other, Jupiter ruling Sagittarius and Saturn ruling Libra for exaltation, I predicted in the  beginning of the third quarter of the year that the president would obtain support.

In fact, Saturn, ruler of Midheaven, constrained the law( Jupiter), which weighed against him, and favored Jupiter with  facilities, in the generous Sagittarius way, with which Jupiter has so much affinity.

Had the position of the planets been changed by signs the result would be different.

Brazilien people got a bit disapointed, that is fact. But the result  essentially is neither bad nor good from an universal point of view.

In this way, duality, in my humble opinion, is only one facet of ONE and same thing: that “thing” that human mind does not reach and that in its smallness calls good or evil.

Clélia Romano, DMA ( writed at August the 3rd of 2017)

 

 

 

TERROR IN THE SKY : BOMBING IN MANCHESTER

On May 22nd 2017, 12 years after the July 2005 London Bombings, Great Britain was again the victim of a vicious terrorist attack. This time the city of Manchester was the scene of the tragedy when a bomb exploded during a show of a pop idol. 22 people were killed and 59 seriously wounded.

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A previous terrorist attack happened when on July 7th, 2005 four Islamist extremists separately detonated three bombs in quick succession aboard London Underground trains across the city , latelater,a fourth on a double-decker bus in Tavistock Square. Fifty-two people were killed and over 700 more were injured.

Another deadly terrorist incident happened in 1988 when the Pan Am Flight 103 exploded above Lockerbie.

THE HELIACAL CYCLES AND ” THE PATH” OF THE PLANETS

So, there is an interval of 12 years between the explosion in Manchester and the London Bombing in 2004 and 29 years between Manchester and the bombing of the Pan Am flight.

Twelve years is the heliacal cycle of Jupiter whereas 29 corresponds to the heliacal cycle of Saturn.

An astronomical planetarium shows us that Jupiter was heliacally rising above England around October 9th, 2004. This happened at the 4th degree of Libra, close to the ascendant of the horoscope of England of 1.01. 1801. ( 7° Libra). This is, at least according to Nick Campion’s Book of World Horoscopes, the most useful horoscope for the United Kingdom.

If we go back to the previous assault, it happened in London on July 7th, 2004, this is 9 months after the heliacal rising of Jupiter.

This new heliacal cycle, twelve years later, started around October 15th,2016 when at sunrise Jupiter became visible after combustion. This happened again ,of course, near the ascendant of the horoscope of Great Britain, this time at 8° Libra.

Seven months and 15 days later after this heliacal rising, the dreadful bombing happened in Manchester.

In modern astrology, we would not be inclined to connect Jupiter, this great benefic, to such negative events as terrorist attacks. However, this is not what we see in Mesopotamian Astrology.

In the excellent book ” Babylonian Planetary Omens- Part Four ” of Reiner and Pingree we read several texts of “omens” of Jupiter which do not exactly promise eternal sunshine and roses. On the contrary, they even often portend bad times to come.

According to the texts of the astrologer-priests of Mesopotamia, the quality of Jupiter, and the other planets for that matter, greatly depend on the place of the horizon where they make their first appearance. (heliacal rise) and secondly by the planets and stars which are visible in the sky at this very moment.

The heliacal rise of a planet always happens at a particular place at the horizon. This is the sector or “the path” where the planet becomes visible. These 3 paths which divide the eastern horizons are dedicated to the cosmic trio of the Babylonian chief gods in the Babylonian pantheon: Anu, Ea and Enlil.

These paths were known and used as early as the birth of the Babylonian Astrolab where 36 stars were divided in 3 columns, representing these 3 paths, each with 12stars.

Anu is the creator of everything and is the god of heaven; he rules the eastern part of the horizon. Enlil was the god of destiny and of everything between heaven and earth and rules the northern part of the horizon , whereas Ea (or Enki) was the god of the underworld and the ocean and rules the southern part.

These paths are determined by the azimuths where the heliacal risings occurs and every planet had its “favourite” sector to rise : Jupiter was happiest in the path of Enlil ,whereas Mars , preferred to rise in the path of Ea, ruler of the underground.

So, when the astronomer-priest observed a heliacal rise of Mars in the path of Enlil (which was for Jupiter) it was considered as a bad omen. There is also documentation that, if Jupiter rose in the path of ANU , it was interpreted as bad news for the ruling king.

It is, in this instance, interesting to see that the heliacal rising of Jupiter in 2004 and 2016 occurred in both cases in the path of ANU, which, according to the texts is the most difficult sector to rise.

When we look at Saturn, we see that in 1988 Saturn rose heliacally on January16th 1988 at 27 degree in tropical Sagittarius. The disaster in Lockerbie happened about 11 months later after Saturnus’ heliacal rise, on December 21st.

29 years later ( heliacal cycle of Saturn) on January 7, 2017, Saturn rose again at the same place and between the same stars. Five months later after the beginning of the new cycle, on May 22nd, there was that horrible terrorist strike in Manchester

THE HOROSCOPE AND THE SKY

The chart for the moment of the explosion ( Manchester, May 22nd 2017-22:34) shows a Last Crescent Moon exact on the IC when Mars is close to the descendant and makes an opposition with Saturn ,also close to the horizon. The Moon is going to the conjunction with Uranus and is squaring Pluto.But it becomes really interesting when we include the sky and fixed stars in our interpretation: At the moment when the Moon, in her phase of last visibility, reaches the IC, Antares, royal star of a martial quality in the heart of the constellation Scorpius, is exactly rising at the eastern horizon. Antares is extremely powerful, since, together with some other stars in her constellation, she will be visible for almost the entire night. So, the least we can say is that the combination of Antares with the Moon is shaping an exceptional powerful paran.

Mars is combusted by the rays of the Sun which is near the Pleiades and is situated between the stars which form the top of the horns of the constellation Taurus ; Al Hecka and El Nath. According to Bernadette Brady, El Nath is the point of attack and viewed as the force of the Bull, symbolizing a great and horrible weapon. When El Nath is combust (invisible by the beams of the sun) the violence may come totally unexpected, as a predator in the night.

There is also the fixed star Spica which shines exactly at the MC. This may appear somewhat odd as Spica is traditionally considered one of the most fortunate stars in the sky. However, this is not always the case; we read in the “Liber Hermetis ” that , when Venus is aspected by Mars, or, when Saturn is on the Ascendant, Spica is losing her beneficial influence, and corrupts the angular house where the star is located. We can see that in the chart of the explosion Mars is making a sextile with Venus and that, in addition, Saturn is near the ascendant.

For closing, we can only notice that , as 5000 years ago, the heavenly writing is still demonstrating what is happening on earth and that the maxim ” as above, so below ” did not lose its validity.

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The sky above Manchester at the moment of the explosion

My notes on the 2nd round of the French election

France 2nd round election

(the chart: Opening of the Polls 2nd round France, 7 May 2017 8:00:00 CED -02:00:00, Paris, France 02e20’00 – 48n52’00)

I took the ascendant for Macron as he won the first round and is the favorite to win the election. Therefore the 7th is Le Pen. The degree of the Midheaven is the office or the prize if you want.

Mercury, the lord of the Ascendant (Macron), applies to Saturn, the Lord of the 10th (by division – 9th whole sign) (the office). However, that being said there is something that makes me question whether or not Macron in fact will win. Saturn is retrograde in the angle of the 7th and Mercury is applying from the 11th and the domicile of Saturn’s fall, Aries. Now the medieval astrologers called this “returning” (radd in Arabic). When the pushing planet (Mercury) applies to Saturn, which is retrograde then it returns the matter to Mercury.

“But “returning” comes to be in two ways. One; that a planet would be joined to a planet under the rays, and it would not be able to retain what it received from it, and thus it will return it. Secondly, that a planet would be joined to a retrograde planet, and it returns to it what it received from it on account of its retrogradation.

The second case is what we have in this event chart, Mercury joining to the retrograde Saturn. We are told that a returning either destroys the matter or that there can be situations in which the matter will come to pass none the less. “…perhaps the returning will be with fitness, or perhaps it will be with detriment.”

Abū Ma’shār goes on to say; “returning with fitness comes to be in three ways.”

1. “…that the planet to which it is pushed is receiving the pusher.” In our chart it would be fit in spite the retrogradation if Saturn received Mercury. Does Saturn receive Mercury? As I first said, it is in the sign which is Saturn’s fall. Abū Ma’shār in another place describes this as one coming to another from its enemies house. Mercury is only in the triplicity of Saturn which was a very, very, weak reception at best. Pretty much the consensus among astrologers was there needed to be at least 2 of these lesser dignities to indicate a semi-strong reception. Had Mercury been at 25 Aries he would have been in both the terms and triplicity so we could have said that it is received. But that is not the case and therefore cannot say he is received and finds grounds for fitness from this consideration.

2. “…that the pusher is direct in course and the one to whom it is pushed is burned up or retrograde, and both are in an angle or in the follower to an angle.” Well we do have this with Mercury and Saturn. Mercury is direct and in a succeedent house (the 11th) while Saturn is retrograde and in the angle of the 7th. So I honestly have to answer yes to this consideration. Both are either in an angle or what follows an angle (succeedent).

3. “…that the planet [receiving the pushing] would be burned up or retrograde, [or] cadent from the angles, and the pushing planet in an angle or in a follower to an angle. But if they were so, and the cadent or burned or retrograde one received the arrangement, it destroys the matter. If however the receiver returned to the pusher and the pushing one was in an optimal place, it will make the matter fit after destruction.” This is not the case here, since Saturn is in an angle while retrograde.

I therefore find the 2nd exemption to be a compelling one that supports the matter will be accomplished.

Abū Ma’shār further says, “Also, its returning with destruction comes to be in two ways.”

1. “…that the pushing one would be cadent, and the retrograde or burned one to which it is being pushed is in an angle or in one following an angle.” As already established, Mercury (the pushing one), is not cadent it is succeedent. So this consideration is not applicable.

2. “….that the pushing one and the receiver are cadent or burned, and it will return to it what it received from it with its arrangement destroyed, on account of its condition of retrogradation or being under the rays: and the pushing one could not be able to advance with that matter. Then it signifies that there is neither a beginning nor end to that matter.” This condition requires that both the planet applying and the planet being applied to, are either cadent or combust. Again this is not the situation. Mercury is succeedent, direct and free of the Sun, and Saturn while retrograde, is angular and free of the sun, so neither is this consideration applicable.

The lord of the 7th (Le Pen) is retrograde and not joined to the significator of the Midheaven. Therefore I have to give this contest to Macron. But what is interesting is that he is from the “house of the enemy” of the government. Poor France!

Note:

This prediction was first published to the private astrology group, Company of Astrologers, on Saturday the 6th of May, 2017. Following is a copy of my “activity log” from Facebook to document when I published it.

activity log

Quotes from Abū Ma’shār are from his “Greater Introduction”.

 

The Constitutional referendum in Turkey 2017

The 16th of April 2017, the people of Turkey will vote on sweeping changes to their constitution giving their president unprecedented power. Proponents of the “yes” campaign, say the proposed “Turkish style” presidential system will ensure the country no longer risks having weak governments, and insist the stability will lead to a long period of prosperity. The Yes campaign of course is proposed and is backed by the ruling Justice and Development (AK Party) Party of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan (surprise surprise?)

Voting is taking place between 07:00 (7 a.m. – 0400GMT) and 16:00 (4 p.m. – 1300GMT) in Turkey’s eastern provinces of Adıyaman, Ağrı Artvin, Bingöl, Bitlis, Diyarbakır, Elazığ, Erzincan, Erzurum, Gaziantep, Giresun, Gümüşhane, Hakkari, Kars, Malatya, Kahramanmaraş, Mardin, Muş, Ordu, Rize, Siirt, Sivas, Trabzon, Tunceli, Şanlıurfa, Van, Bayburt, Batman, Şırnak, Ardahan, Iğdır, and Kilis. These provinces consist of 38% of the countries area but represents only 23% of the population.

For the rest of the country, ballot boxes opened at 8 a.m. (0500GMT) and people would be allowed to vote until 5 p.m. (1400GMT).

The reason for the time difference is that the sun rises and sets earlier in the east of the country than in the west.

I therefore have cast the chart for the opening of the polls at 07:00 but will use the capital as the location.

The Ascendant is 13° c 35’ (Taurus). Lady of the Ascendant is Venus (representing the people of the nation) in her exaltation Pisces in the 11th house; a very strong position being oriental and direct.

An interesting note is that the Midheaven falls in the 9th (the Law) and the moveable sign of Capricorn. The proposition being voted on of course is a change in the law! The 10th whole sign is Aquarius. Both the 10th by counting (Aquarius) and the 10th by division (Capricorn) are the signs ruled by Saturn. However Saturn in Sagittarius falls in aversion to its domicile in Capricorn. It is therefore a poor significator for the law. I would look rather to Mars in the Ascendant which is the exalted ruler of Capricorn and also sends his aspect co-present with the degree of the Midheaven in Capricorn.

Very simply in this chart, the lady of the Ascendant, Venus holds a partile aspect with Mars in her domicile, receiving him and pushing her dignity on to it. There is nothing that could have been a stronger “yes” in the chart. But there is a second testimony equally powerful. We see that the Moon (universal significator of the common people) joined to Saturn.

For better or for worse, it would be difficult for me to see how this chart could not be indicating anything other than a resounding yes vote for the Constitutional amendments.

 

13:25

16.04.2017

 

Addendum 14:11 by Steven Birchfield

One comment from  Behiye Kayran in Turkey was very significant, and that is that Venus has always been the significator of Islam. And we see it strongly receiving the constitutional amendments. On the other hand I just noticed in my chart that the Moon (common people) actually joins the Sun first (the opposition). However because the Sun falls in the the weakest part of the heavens in the 12th …. and the strength of Venus is more powerful and strong than that of the Moon I would have to say it is going to pass although it is clear there is a split between two divisions of the people…. those that are secular (the Moon) and the Islamist’s (Venus).

Astrology & Urbanism: the magical foundation of Baghdad

By Pablo Ianiszewski F. / Edited by P. James Clark

The battered city of Baghdad hides an astounding story of which few people are aware. The life of its busy streets has not always been accompanied by bombings and devastation. Its birth takes us back to t time when Magic was part of everyday life. Although its location was the site of several human settlements since the second millennium BC, the foundation of the city itself dates back to the 8th century.

Caliph Al-Mansur (714-775 AD), second ruler of the Abbasid dynasty, wanted to build a majestic capital for his reign, for the city of Damascus in Syria still had the memory of its former Umayyad rulers. It was thus that the new Caliph, after careful exploration of the region, decided to establish his capital to the east, in a splendid place bathed by the waters of the Tigris and protected by the shadow of date palms. But a good geographical location was not enough. In order to begin the work, he had to choose the right time by consideration of the influence of the stars to ensure long-term stability and strength of the city. That was how the magical founding of Baghdad was conceived.

The work was carried out by two reputed astrologers of the time, the Persian Naubakht Ahvazi and the Jew Mashallah ibn Athari. Both sages worked, along with a handful of students, in the long process of selecting a promising day and time to begin building the city. They made extensive calculations of celestial movements and positions, in an age where all operations had to be performed by hand. When searching for a suitable date in advance, they made use of their knowledge in Elective Astrology, that branch of celestial art in charge of choosing the most favorable astrological moments to successfully perform some important task. Used by the Babylonians for almost all civil and religious activity of a certain magnitude, the Caliph could not but use it for his great city. Like everything in this Hermetic science, astrological choices are based on the principle that the end is hidden in the beginning, so that the outcome of any enterprise depends on the quality of the time in which it began. Hence, with regard to the construction of a city, it is imperative to start the work at a duly selected moment.

While Mashallah and Naubakht sought the most suitable astrological moment, the latter’s family helped to design the city, drawing inspiration from the Sassanid capital of Gur, today Firuzabad, in Persia. They decided to give a circular shape to the floor, emulating the celestial vault and the movement of its luminous inhabitants, for just as the square represents the earth, the circle always evokes the sky. Circumference is the fundamental symbol of cycles, where time and motion are linked to the beginning and end of everything. It is the perfect figure par excellence, with its infinite sides equidistant from the invisible center, from which all possibilities of manifestation flow. In the circle we find the base of the oriental mandala, symbol of the universe and the graphic synthesis of the totality. A thousand years ago, the Baghdad plant was perfectly round for a compelling reason: it was thought to be a reflection of Heaven on Earth, bringing Paradise down.

It is speculated that the planimetry of the city may have been expressly designed to shape the celestial order by the arrangement of palaces, mosques and other public buildings, reflecting in the earth the positions of the stars for the day of its foundation. The idea of organizing the layout of the buildings according to an astronomical pattern was not new for the time. The Egyptians had already disposed much of their buildings following a scheme of celestial imitation, as the engineer and researcher Robert Bauval demonstrated in the 1990s. Although this type of thesis is not easy to prove, it is not crazy either, although it tends to raise bitter controversies with the most orthodox archaeologists and historians. In any case, the extension of the present city has more than surpassed the original circular plant, becoming a good example of this so typical modern disorder, a chaos in constant expansion that attends to nothing more than to demographic and economic pressures. In the 8th century, you can imagine, archetypal principles were attended that, by elevation, reflect a harmony and beauty that we have lost in our crowded and alienating cities.

And what day did the astrologers choose to found the city? In order to answer this it is inevitable to complicate matters a little and resort to the technical language of astrology. The chronicle recorded by the Persian mathematician and astrologer Al-Biruni indicates that the work began sometime on Saturday, July 31, 762, but he does not mention the time to lift the horoscope, as the astral chart does not have the cusps pointed out. However, knowing the rules of the art, it is possible to find the exact time and restore the angles of the figure. Given this, the team of astrologers could only have chosen 14:40 local time for the meridian of Baghdad. At that moment Jupiter was highly strengthened in his regency and term of Sagittarius, in hayz and stationary before turning direct, located right on the Ascendant. These factors are providential for traditional astrology, announcing political stability, economic prosperity, development of science and the arts, promotion of education, as well as justice, tolerance and cultural diversity. The astral chart in question was correctly found by the linguist and astrologer James H. Holden, to whom we owe the magnificent work “A History of Horoscopic Astrology”.

Unfortunately the Moon, which is fundamental in every elective chart, is peregrine, void of course and in via combusta on the horoscope of Baghdad, but the astrologers probably tried to mitigate these afflictions with two mutual receptions to Venus and Saturn, sadly not very effective because their lack of aspect, and a beneficial applicative trine to the Part of Fortune. However, we must remember that no astrological choice is perfect. Due to the great complexity of the firmament, it is inevitable that some negative factors will develop. Mars, the planet of war, opposes Jupiter and the Ascendant from the Seventh House, which among other things governs enemies. No wonder then that Baghdad was besieged and ravaged by the invasion of the Mongols under Hulagu Khan in 1258. The hordes of the steppes were brutal, killing most of its inhabitants and burning the city. In 1401 it was destroyed again by Timur, and in the following centuries had to endure the invasions of the Ottoman Turks.

It is ironic from a modern perspectice, that the round city of Baghdad was formerly known as Madinat as-Salam, the City of Peace. What is not taken into account is that the Abbasid capital was the jewel of civilization, knowledge and culture for half a millennium. The well-known Caliph Harun al-Rashid, great-grandson of Al-Mansur and fifth in line of succession in the dynasty, was who, next to its son and successor Al-Ma’mun, raised in the city the House of Wisdom (Bait Al-Hikmah), the most important center of studies of the time, with an extraordinary library where hundreds of translations were made to render the Greek philosophers into Arabic, along with the rishis of India, the wise men of Egypt and the Magicians of Persia. It was a kind of emulator of the great library of Alexandria in the heart of Iraq. Alchemy, chemistry, medicine, mathematics, astronomy, astrology, botany, zoology, geography and cartography were developed. Plato, Aristotle, Plotinus, Euclid, Hippocrates, Galen, Charaka, Sushruta, Aryabhata and Brahmagupta were translated, among many others. There worked the greatest scholars of the Middle East, such as the mathematician Al-Khwarizmi, the philosopher and polymath Al-Kindi, the renowned doctor Hunayn ibn Ishaq and the astrologer Thabit ibn Qurra. It was the golden age of Islam. In the House of Wisdom, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Sabeans and Zoroastrians met, leaving aside all their sectarian differences, joining forces in the pursuit of knowledge.

Baghdad was the richest city in the world and the intellectual beacon of its time. It came to have more than one million inhabitants, being the most populated city of its time. The stories of The Thousand and One Nights were told in its streets, while the song of the muezzin was heard from the minaret of the mosques, which rivaled in beauty with the walls of Babylon or the Mausoleum of Helicarnassus. In their observatories the movement of the stars were measured, in their taverns mystical poetry was recited, while in their gardens politics, philosophy and theology were discussed with the sound of the lute and the nay flutes behind. Let us not forget either that it is precisely in this same region of the globe that civilization itself arose, where writing, wheel, brick, agriculture, sailing, gardens, even the notion of city was invented. Iraq is the very cradle of science, religion and culture. The plunder and destruction of this long war, now transferred to the tribal and sectarian realm, has caused an irreparable loss for humanity. There are thousands of archaeological pieces that have disappeared in the midst of the war, fundamental parts of the history of humanity, not to mention the atrocities that have had to suffer the people of the country. The hordes of Mars are back, this time with bullets, drones and explosives. On the other side, religious fanaticism boils explosively, contributing to the destruction But Baghdad will rise again, as it has done many times in the past, or at least we hope so.