Astrology Book Review: America Is Born (Regulus Astrology LLC/Dr. H.)

May 16, 2009 by  

Nun in Thought. Astrology Book Review: America Is Born

The full title of this book is America Is Born: Introducing the Regulus USA National Horoscope. In it, the pseudonymous author, Dr. H., brings his horoscope rectification skills to bear on the U.S. national horoscope. He uses medieval astrological techniques and a great deal of historical data to arrive at a rectified version of the well-known Sibly horoscope for July 4, 1776.

Along the way, he demonstrates his primary direction sequence as a means of predicting events from the horoscope, as well as Abu Ma’shar’s method of directing planets via primary motion through the bounds (aka the planetary terms). As was the case with Dr. H.’s previous book on rectification, much of the really juicy material resides in the book’s appendixes. For example, Appendix C contains the rectified horoscopes of several individuals who strongly influenced the U.S. national consciousness, and the links between their horoscopes and that of the USA.

Briefly…

Another excellent, substantive book from Regulus Astrology, America Is Born is primarily suited to intermediate and advanced astrologers. Dr. H. really works the medieval techniques, and assumes his readers will have some familiarity with such methods. This is a book for enthusiasts of mundane astrology; the art of predicting political and public events, but many methods are presented that could also be used for natal horoscopes, such as directing planets through the planetary bounds. America Is Born is best read in conjunction with, or after, A Rectification Manual, which goes through the building blocks of astrology in greater detail.

Structure & Contents

America Is Born has perhaps the most fascinating preface I have ever read – in an astrology book or elsewhere. In it, the author discusses the symbolism of afflicted Mercury in the USA natal chart, suggesting that astrologers, being Mercury-ruled, are in particular danger should they make public their predictions of US events. This is interesting, but begs the question whether other Mercury-ruled professions in the US are in similar danger with going public (writers, finance people, accountants, lawyers, etc.).

Chapter One discusses the role of national horoscopes in mundane astrology, showing that the widespread adoption of the national horoscope really arose with Charles Carter in the 1950s. Dr. H’s book makes a compelling case for the use of such horoscopes, but one should note that such usage is not traditional; the medieval astrologers used planetary conjunctions and ingresses to make mundane predictions.

Chapter Two jumps right in, using primary directions to test the broad-brush positions of the Sibly chart; the chart’s sect and the position of the Moon. Chapter Three is an interesting meta-analysis of the “astrological moment,” the time that is most propitious for an astrologer to actually perform a rectification.

Chapter Four details Abu Ma’shar’s system of distributors and participators. This is essentially the method of moving a planetary significator by primary motion through the planetary terms. This method is a time Lord system, so for example, the distributor for 27 Aquarius 51 (the position of the Moon in the Sibley chart) is Saturn/Aquarius. Saturn refers to the Egyptian term ruler for that position. The author’s point is that we do not simply look at the nature of the planet ruling the bound, but also the sign, and we interpret them as a whole. The participator is a planet which has most recently contacted the point under examination (27 Aquarius 51 in our example), and which must be analyzed as a time Lord of the same influence as the distributor.

Chapter Five introduces the calculation of primary directions, with the author taking us through some of the key steps of calculating primaries. This is a very useful chucker for those who want to learn how to calculate primary directions, as well as those who want to understand the astronomical justification behind this method. Chapter Six gets to delineation and comparison of important events and periods in the United States history compared with some of the distributors of the time. For example, the period between May 27, 1960 and September 28, 1966 was ruled by Venus/Leo. The author’s attributions to this influence include Camelot, cocktail culture, and the Rat Pack, all indicative of pleasure, partying, and celebrity.

Chapter Seven introduces all of the planet-ascendant primary directions of the Regulus USA horoscope. This is the participator portion of Abu Ma’shar’s method introduced in Chapter Five. Chapter Eight starts with the Moon and its directions to the Regulus USA horoscope. The subsequent chapters all discuss each of the planet’s primary directions; the Sun through Jupiter, in Chapter 15.

Appendix A provides a list of events used for the chart’s initial rectification, comprising about five small-type pages. Appendix B gives a list of all ascendant directions by primary motion, direct and converse, that had been presented in previous chapters. For example, approximately the first three years after 1776, the distributor was Mars/Sagittarius sextile the Moon. Given that, per Dr. H.’ s analysis, this Moon has as one of its significations the political philosophy of human equality, it is fitting that the Revolutionary war (Mars) should be connected to these ideals. Appendix C shows the influence of directing through the balance on individuals, specifically those who particularly exemplified an era in American history. For example, the rectified horoscope of John Marshall, with his Capricorn Saturn in the 12th house, is associated with the Saturn/Capricorn distribution in the United States horoscope.

Appendix D details the author’s test of the efficacy of Egyptian versus Ptolemaic bounds, concluding that the Egyptian bounds are more accurate. Appendix E shows the author’s results from test of solar arc directions as compared to primary directions. He concludes that solar arc directions show more public events, where his primary directions show events more directly tied to the individual.

Observations

In some ways, America Is Born is a more specialized book than the author’s prior manual of rectification. This is because many of the techniques introduced in the previous book are taken for granted here, but for astrologers interested in the political prediction or interpretation, America Is Born is a gold mine of historical and astrological information. For starters, there are few horoscopes purporting to show the beginning of the United States of America that are as well supported as the one presented by the author in his book.  There are certainly few horoscopes supported by as much test data, and additional information (much of it at the author’s website, Regulus Astrology). For those who use national inception horoscopes, the author makes a very compelling case that his rectification should be used. Highly recommended.

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America Is Born: Introducing the Regulus USA National Horoscope

Dr. H. (pseudonymous) via Regulus Astrology LLC

Regulus Astrology LLC, 2008, 407 pages, paperback.

USD 39.95

Available from astroamerica.com, amazon.com and astrologers.com

Astrology Book Review: Astrologia Gallica, Book 25 – Universal Constitutions of the Caelum (Jean-Baptiste Morin, trans. James Holden)

April 25, 2009 by  

Astrology Book Review: Astrologia Gallica 25, Morin

Book 25 of Morin’s Astrologia Gallica, a text on mundane astrology, is available for the first time in English, thanks to James Holden’s recent translation.   Mundane astrology, which focuses on predicting events of political and national/international magnitude, is a complex area of the art, one that few people have completely mastered.  The Universal Constitutions of the Caelum is a very coherent and practical treatise on the subject, and English-speaking astrologers everywhere should rejoice that it is finally available to them.  An abbreviated version of Book 25 was translated into French by astrologer Jean Hieroz in 1946, and until now, Hieroz’s was the only non-Latin version available.  In contrast to modern astrologers of the time, who were blindsided by WWII, Hieroz used Morin’s methods to correctly predict the war, and his 1939 article for an astrological journal is included in Holden’s translation as an Appendix.

 Briefly…

The Universal Constitutions of the Caelum is not necessarily an introductory text, in that it assumes the reader’s familiarity with numerous astrological terms and concepts.  However, the “how-to” methods of mundane analysis presented by Morin are straightforward and easy to apply.  This book is best read with a pen in hand, because Morin gives step-by-step instructions on interpreting a mundane horoscope.  As is typical for him, Morin gives many examples of his method; in conjunction with Jean Hieroz’s article on WWII, the reader can see for himself the application of Morin’s principles.  Similar to other Morin books, The Universal Constitutions of the Caelum deserves careful study.

Contents & Structure

Book 25 is separated into two parts; the first is the more theoretical one, while the second focuses on practical application of mundane methods.  However, there is a significant amount of overlap, which means that one should read the entire book, not just skip ahead to the “good parts”!

Part I begins with chapters setting forth the basic concepts of mundane astrology, starting with a discussion of its validity.  Morin’s key concepts include the doctrine of subordination of horoscopes; the notion that mundane horoscopes do not act alone, but like nesting dolls, they are a manifestation of a larger cycle.  Therefore, the reader is directed to examine the lunations preceding an Aries Ingress, for example, and look for repeating themes among the horoscopes.

In Part I, Chapters 7 and 8, Morin discusses the specific characteristics of eclipses and planetary conjunction horoscopes.  In Chapter 9 and subsequent chapters in Part I, he gives guidance on interpretation of mundane horoscopes. 

The first step is to select ruler(s) of the horoscope, which are those planets that are especially powerful, and whose reemergence in subordinate horoscopes provide timing of the potentials promised earlier.  Here, Morin gives an interesting technique of ruler selection; focusing on the angle subsequent to the Primary Point of a horoscope.  For instance, an Aries Ingress with the Sun in the 12th house would have the Ascendant as the angle, and its rulers, occupants, and aspects would all be essential to determining the ruler – and thus the main theme — of the Ingress.

Chapters 11 and 12 provide details on the places where a mundane horoscope’s promise would most likely manifest, and the specific times in which the events will occur.  In his prediction of WWII, Jean Hieroz utilized the latter methods with consummate skill, and comparing Morin’s instructions with Hieroz’s application is most instructive.  Chapters 14 and 15 focus on the kinds of events one might expect with certain rulers (e.g.: Saturn and Mars ruling the mundane horoscope are bad, but fixed stars make them even worse).

Part II begins with a discussion of the elemental composition of mundane charts, and the planets’ behavior in signs of various elements.  This is especially important for weather prediction, a subset of mundane astrology.  Morin then goes on to emphasize the importance of the Aries Ingress as a description of a year’s events, with special attention to the rulers of the Ingress.  Chapter 4 is an excellent summary of the qualities of the planets when they are rulers of the year, with discussion of the fact that the luminaries can also be rulers of the horoscope, something the ancient astrologers did not address.

Chapters 5 -7 focus on the planetary qualities primarily for weather prediction, providing handy lists of planets in aspect and in various signs.  For example, Venus in Aries, as in the 2009 Aries Ingress, “under the sun beams produces humidity; when oriental, thunder and rains; when occidental, winds; when static, humidity.”

Chapter 8 gives an interesting list of aphorisms for determining events from the rulers’ motion; Morin considers all planets to bring rain when they are retrograde, for instance, though this tendency is emphasized when the planet is in a moist sign, a humid Lunar mansion, and in aspect with Venus or Mercury.  Chapters 10 and 11 are chock-full of aphorisms for further weather indications contained in the Aries Ingress and lunation horoscopes.  Chapter 13 provides guidance on comparing subordinate charts; such as that of an Ingress and a subsequent lunation.  Chapter 14 explores the intersection of place and horoscopes.  Chapter 15 gives guidelines for interpreting the appearance of comets.  First, one is to determine the planetary nature of a planet (mainly by its color), and then look at its position in the zodiac, interpreting the comet similarly to a planet in that sign.  Chapter 16 provides details on daily weather predictions, and some additional factors that go into such a specific prediction.

The Appendixes are particularly useful, giving a method for determining planetary strength, the WWII prediction of Jean Hieroz, WWI horoscopes, tables for the year 1625, and a list of the elemental qualities of the lunar mansions (and the mansions’ location).

Observations

A highly recommended text on mundane astrology.  The number of concrete guidelines and tips in this book justifies careful reading and re-reading.  James Holden’s translation, as always, is careful and thoughtful, with plenty of footnotes.  His preface is informative and places the book in appropriate context for the reader new to Morin.  A worthwhile addition to any astrologer’s library.

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Astrologia Gallica Book Twenty-Five: The Universal Constitutions of the Caelum

By Jean-Baptiste Morin (trans. from the Latin by James Herschel Holden, M.A., Fellow of the American Federation of Astrologers)

American Federation of Astrologers, 2008, 241 pages, paperback.

$24.95 on astrologers.com and astroamerica.com

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Astrology Book Review: The Book of World Horoscopes

July 22, 2008 by  

This week, we’re reading The Book of World Horoscopes by Nicholas Campion, the second fourth edition (two of which were self-published) of an instant classic. Campion undertook the monumental task of assembling foundation horoscopes of most of the world’s countries, and published his collection in 1988. However, with empires falling and many new countries emerging out of the rubble, the necessity of a new edition soon became apparent.

The Book of World Horoscopes starts out with a substantive Introduction, which lays out the philosophical underpinnings of mundane astrology. In it, among other topics, Campion discusses the U.S. horoscope and its attendant controversies. The author writes: “This modern Gordian knot is crying out for a conceptual sword,” and suggests an interesting approach that might take us away from the barren search for the moment of the U.S. into more fruitful and practical areas of research. Specifically, Campion recommends the approach prevalent in Great Britain, which is to use any of a number of event charts, including the coronations in 973 and 1066, and a few others. Finding the common points between a series of historical charts could be useful in the U.S. horoscope as well.

National Horoscopes Aplenty

Campion then goes through the national horoscopes, often several charts per single country, if doubt exists, or if many event charts are used as in the Great Britain example above. The book is organized in alphabetical order by country name. Each horoscope gets a descriptive paragraph or two identifying the source for the time, date, and place. The horoscope for Afghanistan, for instance, is set for midnight of July 17, 1973, when the King’s brother-in-law struck a coup d’etat. The author acknowledges that there are several possible horoscopes for Afghanistan, which has had a succession of governments over the last 35 years.

Indeed, it is this honesty and dogged focus on not favoring one horoscope over another that helps the book get to the nearly 700-page monster that it is. The readers are given pros and cons of all feasible horoscopes that Campion identified for each country, and quite a smorgasbord it is. For some of the better-documented countries like the United Kingdom, Russia, and the U.S., we get a dozen charts or more. Data fiends, rejoice! However, even many of the less-followed countries merit more than a single chart under Campion’s watchful eye; Zimbabwe has three horoscopes, with a very substantial essay including some of that country’s additional potentially chart-worthy events.

The 12 Appendixes

By the time he reaches Zimbabwe, Campion is truly on a roll, giving the impression he didn’t want to stop just yet. Some of the best materials in this book are the extras in the Appendixes. Campion gives an Appendix of inauguration horoscopes, another on the beginnings of the political parties, Appendix 3 contains city and town horoscopes, Appendix 4 has the inception charts for several key financial events, such as the start of the New York stock exchange, the EU, NAFTA, and OPEC. There are 12 (yes) appendixes total, with several focusing on war and military horoscopes, another on the traditional sign assignments for different regions of the world, and for the continents. A personal favorite is the appendix of World Horoscopes, as proposed by various astrologers through the ages. The chapter also includes other speculative horoscopes, such as that for the birth of Christ.

Finally, we are treated to a 150-page listing of degrees for all the mundane horoscopes listed in the book. For instance, we know the upcoming Solar Eclipse will occur at 9 Leo, so we look up the degree and note that Israel’s chart for de jure independence, May 15, 1948, has the Moon at 9 Leo, and we can then investigate the eclipse’s impact on Israel’s chart further.

The Book of World Horoscopes is very substantial, and would be a fine addition to any astrologer’s library, providing hours (or is it years?) of browsing and experimentation. There are those who will say that it is imperfect, but consider the chaos it replaces. We can certainly critique many of the author’s decisions for inclusion or exclusion of charts, but we now have a starting point from which to do so.

The Book of World Horoscopes

By: Nicholas Campion

Published by the Wessex Astrologer

38.00 GBP (about double that in USD)

671 pages, paperback.

If you have written or published an astrology book you would like reviewed on Gryphon Astrology, please contact me at nina [at] gryphonastrology.com or write to me here (don’t forget to include your contact info).

Lunar Eclipse of August 2008: Iran at War?

July 10, 2008 by  

Lunar Eclipse of August 2008: Iran at War?

The lunar eclipse on August 18 holds many clues about the possibility of a Western war with Iran. There has been much saber rattling from both Iran and Western nations, and the speculation about a possible military confrontation is running high. A major military intervention would definitely be seen in Iran’s horoscope, as it would cause substantial disruption to the country.

The partial lunar eclipse in August is very important for Iran astrologically; it occurs in the sign Aquarius, which traditionally rules middle Iran, and the eclipse will also be visible in Iran. Eclipses can activate “hot” points in a chart, and if a war in Iran was impending, this eclipse would definitely be involved.  [For examples of the way an eclipse can activate a horoscope, read this analysis of China and the August eclipse.]

2008 in Iran and Influences from the Lunar Eclipse

The astrological year is measured from the time the Sun enters the first degree of Aries, i.e. the first day of spring. This year shows problems for Iranians economically, and the tightening international sanctions and economic fallout from the hostility between Iran and the West is shown by Mars in the sign of its fall in Iran second house of economic assets. Mars afflicts both the ruler of the people, Mercury, and Saturn, the ruler of the government.

Lunar Eclipse of August 2008: Iran at War? - Aries Ingress 2008 for Tehran, Iran

Aries Ingress 2008 Horoscope for Tehran, Iran

It will be a difficult year for the Iranian government, as shown by the ruler, Saturn, which is also the ruler of the lunar eclipse. Because Saturn is being afflicted by a very unpleasant Mars, the economic woes are going to weigh on the government more and more. Masha’allah, the ancient Persian astrologer, wrote that it was especially difficult for the king when his significator was the same as the ruler of an eclipse, and was afflicted by the malefics. All of these conditions are fulfilled in this horoscope, though the soft aspect between Mars and Saturn might show problems coming less from conflict than from a gradual tightening of the screws, as with economic sanctions.

Overall, I don’t see a strong potential for war in Iran this year. There may be an earthquake, however, as evidenced by Saturn in an earth sign in the fourth house, ruled by Mercury, the planet of earthquakes.

Lunar Eclipse and the Iranian People

It looks as though the tensions between Iran and the West will affect the well-being of the average Iranian most of all, apart from giving the Iranian government some sleepless nights. We have four planets in the fourth house in a Mercury sign, in an earth sign, and three of the planets are aspected by Jupiter in an earth sign. Again, there is a possibility of an earthquake; if it happens, it would be within three months or so of the eclipse. This seems more realistic than the probability of war.

Lunar Eclipse of August 2008: Iran at War? - Lunar Eclipse of August 2008 set for Tehran, Iran

Lunar Eclipse of August 2008 set for Tehran, Iran

The Full Moon of October 26, 2007 in Political Astrology

October 8, 2007 by  

Wreck in the Moonlight, illustrating Full Moon October 26, 2007 and its astrological meaning

Astrologically speaking, the Full Moon at 2° Taurus/2° Scorpio this month is very significant for the United States, and not for the better. This full Moon promises protracted violence, strife, and financial insolvency for the nation. The horoscope for the Full Moon, set for Washington, D.C., is below:

Full Moon October 26, 2007 and its Astrological Meaning.  Full Moon in the Horoscope.

The stationary Mars in Cancer (in the sign of its fall, so quite malefic) is conjunct the Midheaven of the preceding solar eclipse of September 11, 2007, and opposite the Moon in Capricorn in the Grand Conjunction chart of 1762. Finally, this full Moon is exactly on the cusp of the crucial 10th house of the King, when set for Washington, D.C.. This establishes the importance of this particular full Moon, which we can expect to trigger some fairly disturbing events. Note that this malefic Mars is aspecting Saturn on the malefic South node, which is conjunct the second house of money.

To round out this parade of horribles, William Ramesey (citing the Arab astrologers) writes that Mars in the 12th house means “the people shall be much terrified and troubled by their enemies, from whence shall proceed slaughter and effusion of blood.” While I believe we should hope for the best, this is not an auspicious chart, connecting slaughter and financial insolvency. It is not a far leap to make the connection between these testimonies, the Iraq war, and the current financial troubles of the United States. The dollar may well plumb new depths.

As lunation charts also have everything to do with the weather, with the Full Moon so prominent in the sky, the week starting on October 26th may be a somewhat wet/cloudy week for the nation’s capital.