Traditional vs. “Modern” Astrology

astrologyThis article was originally posted in July of 2007.

Somewhere along the line astrologers split into two camps as some moved forward into humanistic or psychological astrology (leading into evolutionary and transformational astrology) and some moved backwards towards traditional or medieval astrology. Rob Hand was one of my favorite authors, and his book Planets in Transit is still one of the very best resources available on that subject. In 1992, just as Uranus and Neptune conjoined in Capricorn where the flood of new ideas (Uranus) confused and befuddled (Neptune) established conventions (Capricorn), Rob began a study and collection of ancient astrological texts called Project Hindsight. I’ll come back to Rob Hand in a moment.

Modern astrology has its roots in the work of Dane Rudhyar, who pioneered the concept of self-actualization through the astrological system in what he called “humanistic astrology” which was more psychological in nature than the predictive astrological system of the past that was more event-oriented than person-centered. Although Rudhyar had studied and written about astrology since the 1920s, it wasn’t until the Uranus/Pluto conjunction of the 1960s that he revolutionized the astrological world with his book The Astrology of Personality. Rudhyar had been influenced in the 1930s by the archetypal studies of Carl Jung and depth psychology, and he utilized these ideas in his revolutionary approach to the new astrology.

Chiron’s discovery in the late 1970s brought with it the ancient idea that the key to healing is found within the wound, accelerating the movement towards an astrological system that
provided healing of psychological wounds. The outer planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) became known as the “transpersonal” planets which accelerated that personal growth and healing from outside of the individual, and the inner planets were revealed as functions […]

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By |2009-05-28T19:46:05-04:00May 28th, 2009|Astrology|Comments Off on Traditional vs. “Modern” Astrology

Why Sun Signs are Stupid

I love this video from – and while I completely agree with his rant against reducing astrology to a simplistic look at sun signs, I would like to point out that all of us do have Suns, and they are all in signs, and that the Sun is the most important single piece of the chart.  However, it is still just one part of a celestial puzzle, and every piece is an important one.


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By |2009-05-19T08:16:36-04:00May 19th, 2009|Astrology|Comments Off on Why Sun Signs are Stupid

Video: Introduction to Horary Astrology

Christopher Warnock has a beautiful video series on traditional astrology.  I don’t practice these techniques myself but this video is a good introduction to the horary technique.  Some knowledge of astrology is necessary to understand the techniques applied here, though.

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By |2009-04-03T07:53:03-04:00April 3rd, 2009|Astrology|Comments Off on Video: Introduction to Horary Astrology

An interview with Deb Houlding on traditional astrology

When I was at the Blast astrology conference in September I attended a lecture by Deb Houlding, proprietess of the fabulous website, on the ancient art of Horary.  Although my astrological skills fall squarely in the field of modern astrology, which is more humanistic and geared towards spiritual evolution than the more ancient methods, I confess I am fascinated by the ancient techniques and their claims to exactitude and details.

Skyscript has an  by Garry Phillipson which I recommend for everyone.  Even if you don’t know much about astrology you’ll find the story of how she became interested in astrology in general and in the Renaissance techniques of William Lilly in particular quite fascinating.

The more we learn about the incredible field of astrology, the more there is to know.  Not one of us, no matter how learned, can ever claim that we have mastered it!

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By |2018-06-11T13:07:17-04:00March 22nd, 2009|Astrology|Comments Off on An interview with Deb Houlding on traditional astrology

Venus retrogrades today and casts her spells in reverse

Venus turns retrograde this morning, shortly after being squared by the Moon at 8:06 am.

Venus usually slips through our lives like a whisper, and we barely experience her transits.  Her influence is usually soft and encouraging and I often say that we only really take notice when we experience discomfort of some kind.  Even the challenging transits of Venus are benign, offering us only an opportunity to indulge in greater indulgence.

Perhaps the timing of this retrograde Venus at the height of Girl Scout Cookie season could spell disaster to some of us (me), but what else does this retrograde period have in store?  Planets are said to be traveling in retrograde motion when they appear to move backwards from our perspective on earth. During these times their influence causes us to look back instead of forward as we encounter the experiences of that planet.

Venus is famous for her influence on relationships.  As the goddess of love and beauty, she bestows an attractive power and grace, but that attractive power draws more than love.  It can also be a magnet for financial wealth and personal possessions so in that way, Venus is said to rule our values and the things that we love as well as the people. Venus also rules our ability to love and relate to our self, and the kind of talents and personal resources that we possess as well as the material possessions.

This Venus retrograde period occurs in the forceful sign of Aries.  In Aries, Venus has been more motivated to grab for the gusto – to impel us to go after what we want and who we want. Venus turning retrograde makes that more difficult.  We still have the desire, but the actualization of […]

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By |2009-03-06T05:10:41-04:00March 6th, 2009|Astrology|Comments Off on Venus retrogrades today and casts her spells in reverse

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