Over the past few decades, “chaos theory” and “complexity theory” have emerged as new scientific models for understanding chaotic and/or complex systems. Chaos theory has grown out of physics and mathematics. Complexity theory has developed mainly from studying biological and human systems. These theories share a natural alignment with the spirit and practice of astrology, more so than other attempts to use astrology with the concepts of modern science. The current configuration of Uranus and Pluto makes this an auspicious time to discuss chaos and complexity theory with astrologers.
Earlier this summer Nelson Mandela was hospitalized, was repeatedly placed in critical condition, and released from his hospital to go home. No news for month. Then, as the world found out quickly, on Thursday December 5 he finally departed from this life.
International media was well prepared for his death, and the press coverage has had carpet bombing dimensions. Saying goodbye to Mandela has become a major international event and most national leaders will be on hand for his memorial service this week. Now is the perfect time to look at his life and his astrology. First a little biographical background is helpful.
-- by Joseph Crane.
An examination of the astrology of this Presidential campaign, using many difficult predictive techniques, is a complicated enterprise. Here are some of the things I have surmised from my investigation.
Obama and Romney do not like each other or even respect each other; in fact they drive each other a bit crazy. There’s also sufficient Mars intruding on the first debate that it may be a rhetorical Armageddon. Expect an October surprise of some kind, one that will make Obama look bad, although his campaign will probably survive intact. Romney may wilt sometime before the end of the campaign, a victim of physical stress or exhaustion.
Charles Dickens, great novelist of the 19th century, has his “bicentennial” this month that is being celebrated across the world with parties, parades, readings; recently there have been many featured books and articles and blogs about this great literary man. He is known for many full-length novels such as Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, and Tale of Two Cities, but is particularly known for having written and published the shorter A Christmas Carol that helped to revive the once-fading holiday and give it a secular tone. Many of his works, especially A Christmas Carol, have been adapted to stage screen, and television. Dickens’ works were successful in their own time and made him a celebrity on both sides of the Atlantic. Below we will look at his chart using both modern and classical techniques.
The Harmonics  is probably earlier than the Tetrabiblos. Although Ptolemy is well known for his astronomy and astrology, he was also one of the ancient sources for theories of harmony.
The work studies this universal field of knowledge for which music and geometry are considered subsets. Much of the material in Harmonics is exclusively concerned with music, including setting up exact number ratios for the different modes.
The Harmonics Book III applies his previous exposition of intervals, scales, and ratios to ethics and psychology, and to astronomy and astrology. Unfortunately, some of Book III has been lost to us. In Chapter 9 of Book III, Ptolemy presents the astrological aspects and their ratios to one another. Curiously, in this presentation Ptolemy does not use degree numbers for the aspects. Instead, he considers the twelve zoidia as discrete units and the whole number relationships between them that yield moriai and epimoriai. This discussion might have fit better into the Tetrabiblos Book I, within his treatment of the qualities and relationships between whole zoidia.
Here’s a chart example to demonstrate many of the major themes of the Hellenistic tradition of astrology. In this essay I refrain from outright interpretation and simply discuss how one would see a chart according to the Hellenistic tradition. I choose a person well known to many Americans as both or either a politician and an entertainer.
Rush Limbaugh, according to some (Democrats), was the de facto leader of the Republican Party, yet he has never held elected or appointed office. He is an influential talk-radio host and self-proclaimed spokesperson for the conservative cause. He has been a national figure for the past twenty years. He has helped steer many a political cause, his depictions of liberal politicians can be devastating, and he is not particularly beloved by women. Yet even some liberals find him an entertaining guilty pleasure.
Let’s take our time with what we have here. First of all we’re seeing his astrological chart using whole sign houses, the original house (or “place” topos) system. In the next image of his chart, to make the contrast more clear, I have deleted the Midheaven degree, which in the ancient tradition was mostly used for predictive purposes. I have included the Ascendant that always falls somewhere in the first house or place.
Ptolemy’s Digression: Astrology’s Aspects and Musical Intervals
Statement of the Problem
This essay addresses a problem in the development and continuity of astrology: how do astrologers, past and present, account for the astrological aspects? Aspects are the means by which a planet or position (Ascendant, Lot of Fortune) has contact from another planet or other planets. Once an astrologer has designated planet or a position to answer a question posed to the astrological chart, aspects to the designated position provide information to answer a question and determine an outcome.
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