Friday, January 14, 2011

Astrology is still the same just as ‘A Rose by any other Name’!

When astronomer Parke Kunkle announced that the astrological signs aren’t right, all he did was state a fact known and understood by astrologers throughout the ages.  Yes, Western tropical astrology differs from what is called sidereal astrology, astrology based on the constellations (used by Vedic astrology). 
Most (but not all) Western astrologers use the tropical system, meaning that we base our astrological forecasts on the earth’s cycle of the year.  On Spring Equinox, we say Aries begins because Aries symbolizes new beginnings.  On Winter Solstice, we understand that the sign of Capricorn is highlighted because it’s a time (or it was before modern technology) when people have to pull together and get organized if we’re to survive the winter months (Capricorn symbolizing our social structures).  These astrological truths are a metaphor of the energies involved. Astrology is a symbolic system as well as a science – although they don’t call it astrology, biologists at Vanderbilt University have published a paper proving that the time of day and the time of year you are born affects your body and brain chemistry.

Because of the earth’s tilt, wobble and rotation, over thousands of year we got out of phase with the constellations. In fact, every 72 years or so, it moves about 1*.  It’s called precession and it has moved the sign rising on the Spring Equinox from Aries back into Pisces.  That’s why we’ve been living in what is called the Age of Pisces since around the time of Christ.  And we’re all hurrying to find the Age of Aquarius, when the constellation of Aquarius will rise with the Spring Equinox. 

Right now, there is a discrepancy of about 23* between the tropical zodiac (measured by earth seasons) and the sidereal zodiac (measured through the stars).  Which means that those of your born during the first 23 days of a tropical sign are pushed back into the previous sign.  But does it change your personality?  I don’t think so.  It’s like saying the Pluto’s realm of death, destruction and rebirth no longer has power since scientists have decided it isn’t a planet.

So how do astrologers work with this paradox?

Let’s play with this for a moment. If we put Pisces where Aries used to be, what we get is a Piscean vib to our sense of identity and our need to discover new horizons to conquer (all Aries traits).  During the age of Aries, when the constellation of Aries rose with the Sun at Spring Equinox (2000BC to 1CE give or take a century or so), warriors were harder, crueler, more focused on killing and looting and conquering. It was all about them!  During the age of Pisces, which has a more spiritual bent, warriors began to fight for God – or at least what they wanted to believe was God’s will.  And now at the end of the age of Pisces, we see our soldiers fighting to protect the weak, defend the truth and rebuild nations. 

The archetype of the Warrior has changed.  We still need warriors, but now we see them as more compassionate (Pisces) and willing to die for their country, not for gain and power, but because they believe it is right. (We’re not talking about their leaders reasons for going to war.)

So you could say that there is an underlying Piscean energy that changes how we look at each sign of the zodiac.  And it is true. When Aquarius rises at Spring Equinox, there will be an underlying vib of Aquarian idealism, group unity and independence that will influence how Aries and other signs behave.  It’s about the evolution of the archetypes.

So all of you out there who are Aries in the tropical system but Pisces in relationship to the stars, you still are working on the Aries task of finding your identity, learning to be brave and exploring the unknown.  You just do it in a Piscean manner. 

Now about those Babylonians who changed the zodiac from 13 signs to 12.
Most ancient cultures used to measure time by the Moon – so many of our words for time and measurement are based on the Moon.  Moon calendars use 13 months as a marker for the year.  So, those old Babylonians probably shifted to a solar calendar, since it more suited their patriarchal mindset.  It was during that time that women began to lose their powers and their equal rights, and so the Moon also got demoted as our time-keeper.  

As you all know, the myth is that 13 is an unlucky number. This is a masculine superstition, since 13 is sacred to the Goddess.  
So, the 13th constellation is named Ophiuchus or Serpentarius, the Serpent Bearer and Serpens, the Serpent.  Ophiuchus means the man who holds the serpent.  It is an ancient constellation invented around 3500BC, when it was opposite the Sun at Spring Equinox and it symbolized triumphing over the darkness of Scorpio, on which the man treads. Ophiuchus was also associated with the great Greek healer Aesculapius, whose snakes symbolized wisdom and transformation.  The good doctor had power even over death.  

At some point, Ophiuchus was united with Scorpio, since the Sun moves through the constellation of Scorpio rather quickly and through Ophiuchus during the rest of the month.  Perhaps the ancients recognized that although the darkness of Scorpio and death must be faced and gone through, there was healing on the other side.  And of course, that’s how we define Scorpio today – Scorpios must face the dark dragons of their own passions and win through to higher wisdom and transformation.  
A rose by any other name would smell as sweet. . .


  1. Thank you for this explanation, Cathy! Really interesting!

  2. I love you lady! Great info. Your one of my favorite Bards!