Is Astrology True?
Astrology is based on a fundamentally different world view to materialistic causality.
It has its origins in an older, pre-scientific stratum of consciousness, when man’s relationship to the Cosmos, amongst the cognoscenti, was defined by sacred geometry, numerology and the adage ‘as above so below’.
Astrology is more concerned with the sun and planets and their relationship to the earth, than with the stars themselves, which simply provide the backdrop to the cosmic drama, marking the 12 regions of the zodiac.
The division of the ecliptic* into 12 ( to form the Zodiac ) is symbolic, dependent on the interplay of the 4 elements - Earth, Air, Fire, Water - with the 3 qualities - fixed, mutable, cardinal.
This gives rise to 12 pairings: Fixed Earth, Mutable Earth, Cardinal Earth etc, and each of these pairings is assigned to a 30 degree segment of the Zodiac.
When the system was set up 2000 years ago (or whatever) a constellation of stars within each Zodiac segment was designated to carry the symbolic qualities for that segment, eg a group of stars in the Fixed Earth segment were designated as Taurus the Bull, as the animal symbolically best represents the qualities of fixedness and earthiness.
* ecliptic: the great circle representing the apparent annual path of the sun relative to the stars.
Numerology retains its significance in modern science, and for good reason. Mathematics is the language of physics, used to express our deepest realisations of our relationship to the Cosmos. Einstein’s fundamental equation E = mc² relating energy and mass, illustrates this perfectly; but intriguingly, in this and so many other equations, quantities are found to be related by simple integer ratios or integer powers. For example, Bohr’s equation for the energy of an electron in a hydrogen atom:
E = - me/8²n²h²
Why 1, 2, 4 & 8 ? Why not 1.6363, 2547 etc ?
The integer numbers are a deep mystery which fascinated Jung. According to Marie Louise von Franz, Jung’s most famous disciple –
“Number should not be understood solely as a construction of consciousness, but also as an archetype, and thus as a constituent of nature, both without and within.” (von Franz: ‘Number and Time’).
In other words, Jung understood that number, particularly, I would say, the integers 1-4 (which sum to 10), through their organisation of both matter and consciousness are the key by which the apparent duality of mind and matter can be reconciled. Therefore, ‘as above (outer reality), so below (inner reality)’.
The seven astrological planets represent the seven fundamental energies which manifest our being (read the chapter ’Descent of the Gods’ in C.S.Lewis’s book ‘That Hideous Strength’. Lewis beautifully expounds his deep understanding of the planetary archetypes).
The position of these planets on the ecliptic (Zodiac) and the geometric relationship between them, by division of the circle into 2, 3, 4 etc, determine our personality.
This is difficult to comprehend unless one can grasp both the importance of number in structuring the Cosmos and the fact that there is no differentiation in reality between that which appears to be outer and that which appears to be inner.
It could be said that the apparent outer world is a projection of the deepest unconscious layers of the mind, as organised through number. Number also provides the key to access these deep layers.
Astrology would appear to be antagonistic in its relationship to science – it is a threat to the scientific world view (which is based on a number of fallacies), because if it is true, then there is a major problem with the basis of our scientific understanding.
It is interesting that properly conducted scientific experiments to determine the validity of astrology have found that there are indeed correlations between the planetary positions at birth and choice of profession.
In ‘The Case for Astrology’ John Anthony West describes “the solid body of contemporary scientific and statistical evidence that substantiates the astrological premises”. The response of the scientific community to these threatening revelations is revealing, if not surprising!
Despite looking at astrology over many years it isn’t that easy. Symbolism doesn’t translate well into language, and the rational mind becomes confused. Sometimes astrology is uncannily accurate, and at others tempts one into making predictions which fail to manifest.
Astrology works best for oneself, rather than for others -because of this people should take up the study themselves rather than have others do the interpretation for them. It seems that the rules for this stratum of consciousness are different from the ones we are used to.
Consider: in symbolic language a thing can be both itself and its opposite at the same time. For example, wet and dry are facets of the symbol ’water’ which can manifest as present (wet) or absent (dry). However, wet and dry are also opposites when considered as attributes of Yin (wet), and Yang (dry).