New Moon in Virgo: Is Astrology subjective or objective?

As astrologers we each have our style, preferences, and orientation for our practice. Every month, we choose a question about our professional astrology practice, and collect your responses here.
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New Moon in Virgo: Is Astrology subjective or objective?

Postby Katerusko » Sun Aug 16, 2015 8:13 pm

Is Astrology human-made or an objective natural system? Is there really a goat and a crab up in the sky? We know different cultures have derived different meanings and figures from the constellations, and it worked for them. So is astrology working as a result of our projected thoughts, or can we trust it to be beyond our own minds, to reflect a greater cosmic order?

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Full Name: Kate Rusko
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Re: New Moon in Virgo: Is Astrology subjective or objective?

Postby Katerusko » Sat Sep 12, 2015 11:01 pm

Henry Seltzer

This really is an interesting question. And it leads to others - such as "we know it works" but how? I myself feel that the universe is more complex, amazing and, indeed, spiritual, than our little conventional knowledge, based on a strictly rational approach, gives credit for. We humans at this stage of our development are like eighth-graders that are so happy that they now know something that they make the (understandable) mistake of thinking that they know everything. So to make a stab, rather than providing an answer to the unanswerable, I would say that if astrology is a natural system, run on what we might call "synchronicity," and alive through other-dimensionality, it is part of our human condition - also alive through spiritual elements far beyond what we can see and feel in our 3- or 4-dimensional physical surroundings. Meaning that whether what works in this magical way is a projection onto nature from our mysterious minds and psyches -- or is truly "out there" in super-reality -- matters very little. In any case it is beyond our present quite limited level of understanding. And I, for one, am Ok with that.

Laurie Ann Naughtin 

I believe it to be a natural system. The pictures in the sky have changed over the years, the ancients used them to match the seasons and explain the natural energy at that moment of time. They are a constellation of fixed stars which move on the average of one degree every 70 years or so. I believe it to be time and seasonal based

Heiltje le Roux

The ancients observed and made connections between nature, their outside world, and their experiences of their internal feeling world. As each constellation rose in the night sky at regular intervals throughout the year, each sign became an archetype for a particular human experience at that time of the solar cycle. This yearly, rhythmic, external physical phenomenon, over eons of time became an internal psychological mindset of understanding.

Let us place ourselves in the ancient world of the northern hemisphere, and witness the cycles of life, to which we as humanity are all subject, even if we are unaware of this.

Ancient man began breeding their domesticated goats at such a time of the year that their young would be born in springtime in order to survive and grow strong into winter. Aries, the ram became the beginning of new life, the initiating of new cycles of life, spring.

This life needed to survive in order to provide value. Man had to consolidate, feed it and secure their livestock. Taurus, the bull, became connected with the values of domesticity, rootedness and safety.

Gemini, the twins, is the time of assessing the value thus far; there are various options available, making thinking and communicating necessary. Twin mindsets began to exchange, argue, negotiate, network, buy and sell.

Once acquired, man had to nurture his assets. Summer begins and provides plentiful. Cancer the crab holds on and runs home to hide it. This is motherhood, the hide-away in safety until it is time to emerge again.

In high summer the sun is at its zenith, Leo the lion is at the top of the food chain, everything is growing to its potential. The leader must watch over his children and rule over his subjects benevolently.

Virgo marks the end of summer, the harvest ready for collecting, hard work is needed in order to sort and organize, critically analyzed to make the correct assessments for the next cycle, a renewed virginal state.

Libra the scales, must engage to invite others and attract trade and begin to agree, or else the oncoming winter might bring loss. Endeavors need to be measured, agreements negotiated, contracts respected to ensure partnerships and prevent enemies.

Scorpio brings autumn. If partnerships have been truthful, there will be deep sharing of resources to ensure survival, if not, death will ensue, be it relationships or endeavors. Undercurrents must be sensed to warn who will not survive the winter, the sting. Seeds will go underground to overwinter.

In Sagittarius all people come together around the fire and tell stories, higher mind develops, the guru explaining insight and meaning. Deep winter approaches with the possibility of death, this invites philosophizing. The man-horse as archer aims for higher truths, or in the lower aspect, carnal horse runs, avoiding responsibility.

Capricorn in midwinter confronts responsibility and commitment to build the future and teach accountability for all actions. With meagre winter resources, there is need to compensate to ensure a functional structure for spring and the new cycle. The goat must climb up the mountain to avoid getting stack in the mud, the skeletal midwinter landscape clear.

Aquarius the man sees the potential vision for the survival of mankind beyond the empty winter landscape, manifesting ideas directly from the universal stream of consciousness, the waters of life being poured into the revolutionary mindset, to innovate the next phase of life.

Pisces dissolves what is no longer viable. The snow is melting, warmth starts, mist rising, obscuring the landscape, blind faith that the seeds are there, out of sight. The unseen world makes itself felt in nature’s mysticism. Two fishes tied swimming in opposite directions, one remains in physical reality, the other in intangible Spiritual essence, reborn in God, in order to find that elusive inner Truth. For Life must be reborn for the cycle to continue in spring.

Richelle Steyn

If the cycles of the moon effect the tides, so too must the cycles of the moon effect beings on earth. If the moon has an impact on earth in this way, then there is no reason not to believe that other cosmic bodies have an impact. I think thousands of years of human observation of cosmic bodies, combined with concurrent observation of phenomenon on earth, established a philosophy of relationship between the two. This knowledge must have grown and evolved with new, ongoing observation/research and further philosophical speculation - to end up with what we have today.

Sandra-Leigh Serio

I think astrology is an objective natural system but affected and influenced by human perception and cultural considerations. In addition to that, astrology also reflects a greater cosmic order that we interpret by our own projections and observations. So it is human-made AND a natural system somehow integrated to help us understand many philosophical questions about our time in the Earth plane. Interesting, not everyone can understand, learn or even care about astrology. I think this makes it rather exclusive to certain soul groups and I am very happy to be part of that soul group because astrology has brought much meaning and purpose to my own life and also allows me to help others find their way, too.

Jen Chen

My understanding is that astrology is a tool humans designed to assess and predict cosmic influences. The principle of this tool design is based on long term observation and experimentation, but it is limited to whatever we have known to this point. And like any tool, it has strength and weakness of its functionality and/ or how we use the tool. And that is how different astrological system can offer perspective in the deployment.

Margarita Logovatovskaya

In the sacred book, the Bible, there are indications that the luminaries were created before the creation of the earth. In the book of Job one can read these verses: "Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements—surely you know! When the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy?" (Job. 38: 4-7). It says that the stars, which symbolized the luminaries of the sun and the moon, existed before the creation of the Earth. The creation of the luminaries implies that the created cosmic order also existed. The luminaries served for counting days, seasons, years as follows: "... And God set them in the firmament to give light upon the earth, And to rule over the day and over the night. And to divide the darkness from the light. And God saw that it was good." (Gen. 1: 17-18).
The Bible also says that God has calculated the Universe. And if the luminaries rule the march of time on the earth, then it means that the absolute and cosmic order exists, which is calculated the entire universe. This mechanism is clearly more than human strength and intelligence. In bible times, solar and lunar eclipses and other unusual celestial phenomena considered to be signs. Since the ancient times people with great respect only touched the mysteries of the universe. Perhaps then there were people who could influence the course of cosmic events, interact with the power of heaven. But this implies a higher level of consciousness, when a person possesses power which is beyond the earth and going into the depths of cosmic universe.

Jack Hopkins

Being able to come to some idea about the world around us is a fundamental function of all life, not just human life.

Children learn how to play games, baby lions learn to hunt, science tells us that even plants can learn and remember. The ancients associated the element of Air with the power to abstract and understand. It's a huge concept and it covers everything. The cells in our body possess it, the history of countries and civilizations reflect it. Making sense out of experience undermines all life.

Now that we've got an idea, we've got to find a means to communicate it. Thus emerged language and all forms of transmitting the information. The written word, art, dance, and all forms of capturing our mental children took form. Tradition and law are high on that list, as well as philosophy and the funny pictures the scribes would assign to different portions of the sky.

Is Astrology human-made or an objective natural system? The easy answer is humans are citizens of the objective natural system. The deeper question is "Is Astrology true"? This is like saying "Is gravity true?", although modern science would have us believe not.

All ideas evolve. When Newton came up with the concept of gravity, he had no idea that gravity comes in waves. We know that now. In a similar way, the ancient sky pictures are a sort of root idea that needs to be examined further. We may replace the Turtle with a Crab, but the concept remains. We may develop a deeper understanding of how Capricorn energy manifests in human life, but unless I'm wrong, the framework has and will stand up to the test of time.

People thousands of years in the future will likely look at Scorpio, perhaps under a different name, and still ponder about its energy and ultimate meaning.

Sue Minahan

This question spells out to me the exact defining element of astrology's mystery. Astrology is the co-creation of collaborative genius and insightful intuitive manifestation. We could return to the ancient Greek philosophers who queried if a circle existed because we saw it's form such as the moon, and therefore imagined the perfect circle -- or, if we knew the concept of a perfect circle and looked to see where in this earth existence that form was represented. The fact I see is that it's two sides of one axis, one spectrum unified in teamwork.

It also reminds me of whether Darwin or literal biblical explains our existence correctly? Why not both? in the sense that all of life evolves and in each of life's core essence is the source that evolves.

The fact that different cultures determine different pictures in the sky, only relates to my way of thinking, that it's similar to the myriad of languages existing and even lost since the beginning of voice. Somehow symbols are agreed upon enough to warrant individuals to share their thoughts, their desires, their needs, their stories, their truths, and their fears and loves. Symbolic differences may be the only difference -- not the essential messages transcribed or translated from one soul to the next.

And as in dreams -- it's the symbols that we individually relate in our psyche that permeate the landscape of that intuitive time. So, while we have a common grassroots of experience and may share certain symbols, none-the-less, many current dream studies say that our own dreams talk directly to us, using the symbols and values that we create and understand.

So, that's the deal with the crab the horse the lady with the wheat the twins the bull and goat.

Our symbols in Western astrology work for we who study the entire system of nuances and detail. It's the working language for us. And it'd be a matter of translating as best as possible the symbolic references of another system -- though, they never quite match up.

Relating now directly to: "?is astrology working as a result of our projected thoughts, or can we trust it to be beyond our own minds, to reflect a greater cosmic order?"

Yes, we may trust a greater cosmic order. Living as we are a spirit incarnated with a body on this earth plane, our soul connects to all energy in every form or non-form. Whether we are conscious or not, our projected thoughts stem from the cosmic patterns of movement of energetic cycles. To separate from this causes distresses and it may be the goal of obtaining conscious clarity through our self-described pains that humanity desires to address, in a manner of making our own identity of importance.

The fluidity of grasping the moment with whatever it offers to create, rather than control for one's own reason, requires leaps, like the syntax of our nervous system as thoughts bounce from one end/dendrites to the next.

Life is not necessarily linear. Even birds hardly fly like the crow. They stop and go. Move and change. That is trust. Trust is not linear. Trust is because we work with it as an experience that teaches us to turn on the light again and go further, or even in the dark because we will have another vision, another path, another light that shows how our thoughts worked, like 20-20-hindsight vision looks clear.

I love the idea of cosmic order. Not that it relates at all to man-made order. The system is so far-reaching and embracing the small to the large. Always new. So, using the blue-print of astrology to guide us along to see the vast possibilities of how life and each person constructs their personal life is fascinating. More so than what people buy in the grocery check out line to cook up or not to cook. Such is life -- to cook up our own recipes or menus.

Perhaps the need here is to know that there are many chefs and cuisines and diets and nutritional methods. So to know that we differ in tastes, possible allergies or toxic foods, times when we prefer to eat our major meal morning noon or night, or eat multitude small ones, or as a Tonga friend of mine in his 70's he has a super nutritional drink and one meal at night. The point being, yes, trust our minds. Trust our symbols to speak to our minds. But realize too, that our interpretation and inspiration is through our lens, best as it may be to speak for all. So, take advice and feedback from others, with their suggestions or requirements. Maybe their spice is the answer to life.

Lutia Lausane

Hi Forum Friends: It seems to me this question requires an answer framed in poetic experience. This is how Beatrice responds in Dante’s Divine Comedy (Paradise, Canto 2)

The heaven whose beauty shines with countless lamps
from the deep mind that turns it takes its stamp
and of that image makes itself the seal;

and as the soul within your living dust
diffuses through your body’s different parts
adapted to its various faculties,

just so does the intelligence unfold
in bounty which the stars have multiplied
while turning ever in its unity

Different virtues mingle differently
with each rich stellar body that they quicken
even as the soul within you blends with you.

True to the glad nature from which it flows,
this blended virtue shines throughout that body,
as happiness shines forth through living eyes,

and from this virtue, not from dense and rare,
derive those differences of light we see:
this is the formal principle that gives

according to its virtue, dark and light.

(I think that era’s sense of virtue corresponds with our use of Truth.)

Joan Lainé

The iconic representation of what is seen in the stars is reflected in a peoples culture. However, the interpretation of how the planets and the stars affect behaviours and events would be based on the "elders and wise men" observing said behaviours and events, recording them and making the connections between a timely event and the position of the constellations in sky at that time. Initially it would be fairly simple to make the connections between shorter cycles, like the phases of moon or the passing of the seasons and the events, but over time, it would also begin to occur to the observer, that other stars and planets could presage an event happening or the behaviour patterns of a person born during certain periods of the year.

In addition, there is an energetic connection to the vibration of each planet, that would provide additional information and a more in depth interpretation of what their influence at a given time on a person and event. If this were not so, it would not be possible for the "elders" to have been able to provide detailed and astrological information simply by pure observation. it would also explain why predications could also seem so very obscure until humanity had the right words to describe what the event was. ( You may omit this if you wish since I have absolutely no scientific or logical way to explain this, expect that "I know it is so!")

The different layers of information provided in detailed astrology would not be available to man if there were no cosmic connection i.e. physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.

Justine Zheng

Personally, I trust astrology to beyond our own minds, and reflect a greater cosmic order. Astrologer, in some way, acts as a medium, to interpret these cosmic order and divine message to the earthly world.

I am teaching astrology classes now, when introducing " Why astrology works" to my students, I give them several theories to refer to. And also stress that: it is not theory that is important, but how we put astrology into everyday use. Astrology is a fantastic practical tool to make our life happy...if we only confine to "why-it-works", or even try to prove it right or wrong, it will lose its beauty and power.

Last but not the least, we cannot confine our life to an astrological map, we always need to enrich astrological symbolism with the new life experience, new clients, new culture in this new century....

William Sebrans

Perhaps the question could be phrased as: Is planetary/stellar influence on human life real?
In looking at it that way, it's possible to look at whether

1. the correspondences between the planetary movements statistically match certain behaviors, events and attributes,

2. do the planetary movements exert influence, - are they causal, or only correlative markers for the correspondences, if they exist.

As to #1, my bias is, based upon my own experience and the experience of 1000's of astrologers, is that there is statistically relevant correlation.

Whether the Sun is "in" Leo or Cancer, depending on either tropical or sidereal, or whether Venus is debilitated in Virgo making for difficulty in relationships or exalted in Pisces, and so on....
all are up for discussion, clarification and re-imagination.

But the overwhelming evidence suggests verifiable correspondences.

As to #2, i do not know, and neither does probably anyone else unless they are a 'Seer' in the deepest meaning of the word. As some astrologers say, astrology may not be true, but it works - and may be the operative philosophy.

My bias as to #2 is that it is an utterly connected Cosmos where all things are interacting in complex relationship and that accordingly it is likely that there is some relationship to planets influencing.
The mechanism of how, i could not say. The subtleties of where and when again, could not say.

My bias comes in part from long experience in the Gurdjieff work, and the writing of Rodney Collin there in "Theory of Celestial Influence", which proposes in detail how 'as above, so below' might actually work. The writing is broad, far-reaching and humble, which makes it believable.

Good question.

Kate Rusko

Yes, I think it is objective. And I also think it is the result of human attunement. It was once understood and accepted that the stars provided direction. They allowed one to navigate not only from point A to point B, but through life’s passages. Why would there have been a cosmic order then and not now?
No one seems to question the validity of looking for answers in subatomic particles or in the outer reaches of space. Ironically, we seem to have lost the subtlety to accept that which is most obvious: the divine plan that shines down us without fail.

Maurice Fernandez

In most immediate ways, we may say that astrology is a projection of the human mind, the one that actually “decides” to see a ram or a crab in the sky, and attribute particular meanings to them. We can also mention that the actual size of constellations is not 30 degrees equal as astrologers use, so this division is again human induced. However, just like a masterful artist paining on a canvas, where does the inspiration come from?

Astrology has survived the tests of time and authentication, against strong winds and fierce opposition, so perhaps there is something objectively true to it, something that the human mind TAPPED INTO, rather than projected on. We know that astrology works, whether the person is aware of it or not.
In other words, Astrology may be an extraordinary and successful system resulting from human’s natural response and sensitivity to nature and cosmic order—the ability to tune into pure Truth.

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