Fortune has to do with everything, that we have no control over. Fortune shows life as destiny; how we undergo life. For the Hellenistic astrologer the Lot of Fortune was so important that all houses were renumbered from this Lot. If the Lot of Fortune is locted in radical House five, then that house is the first House of Fortune.
Intro to Traditional Astrology – Mad Sage Astrology
The sixth natal house is then the second house from Fortuna, etc. The Lot of the Daimon, also known as Lot of the Sun, indicates where we undertake life. It shows one's belief, his faith, and not just in a religious way. A secondary meaning is one's profession, work. In Hellenistic astrology a technique is used involved with both Lots. There is also a timeline of important developments in the history of astrology by century available in an appendix.
Extensive footnotes and a 23 page bibliography will help you dig deeper after your curiosity becomes inevitably piqued by what you learn. This second reason is related to the first but pertains particularly to our understanding and practice of astrology itself. It is one thing to read a modern book about the planets, signs, aspects, and houses, with their significations explained.
It is another entirely to examine the way these concepts were understood around the time they were created. You are in for a very deep dive into the richness and subtlety of the basic elements of the chart with this book. From a 43 page chapter on the meanings of the planets to a 73 page chapter on the signs of the zodiac. Chapters on configurations and on houses go beyond just explaining the history and use of aspects and houses. Brennan examines attempts to reconstruct the many subtle distinctions in meaning associated with complex configurations.
He also tackles the confusing and contentious issue of house division.
His explanations are always clear and emphasize the significant historical facts. As I mention in reason number 3 below, modern astrologers have a lot of misconceptions about traditional forms of astrology. It is often the case that astrologers assume that older interpretations of astrological signs and configurations will be overly fatalistic nonsense.
Ancient astrology was more orientated toward fate and objective reality than to subjective psychology. However, it is also true that there was much more richness, nuance, and individuality associated with what things meant in any chart. In other words, the chart has more to say. In these days of Sun sign astrology, astrology tends to get over-simplified and dumbed-down. If you are serious about improving your understanding of astrology and its basics then this is the book for you. What every astrologer needs is a clear explanation of the original meanings of the basic components with their myriad distinctions and nuances explained in a lucid fashion.
Brennan gives this with an objectivity lacking in most treatments, and he imparts an understanding of how the components fit together. If you want to come at those basic chart elements from a totally psychological angle at that point, that is fine.
However, you will do so with a much firmer and richer tool kit of distinctions at your disposal. Modern astrologers have a lot of misconceptions about traditional astrology. Traditional astrologers also have a lot of misconceptions about Hellenistic astrology. Heck, even astrologers studying Hellenistic astrology are likely to have some misconceptions about the history of the texts they are studying and the nature of some of the concepts within them. Is Hellenistic astrology part of an obsession with the ancient Greeks, or was its practice actually more strongly associated with the Roman Empire?
Was Hellenistic astrology a gradual melding of late Babylonian and Egyptian astrology with Greek mathematics and philosophy, or was it more of a sudden invention, or both, and to what extent? How did historical events, like the fall of the Roman Empire, impact the practice of astrology? Brennan clearly addresses these questions and topics of contentious debate in an even-handed and scholarly manner.
Many of the biggest misconceptions that astrologers tend to hold pertain to the history of their art. Are you one of those astrologers who characterizes early traditional astrology too narrowly as one single fatalistic paradigm or set of formulas? Or too broadly as being totally different with each early astrologer? Brennan provides a good overview of the way that a handful of foundational early texts helped establish a common system used by dozens of astrologers in diverse and broad ways over the following centuries.
Chapter 2 which explains the early history has dedicated sections exploring the pros and cons of theories of development, discussing the evidence for each. One can find information about the source of various techniques, whether it be late Babylonian astrology, late Egyptian astrology, one of the foundational texts of Hellenistic astrology, or something else entirely. It is not uncommon for astrologers to associate Hellenistic astrology with a rigidly fatalistic perspective. However, Chris has a whole chapter Ch.
Brennan discusses how astrologers differed as to whether they viewed astrology as a study of signs or causes.
Hellenistic Astrology: An Overview
Additionally, they differed in terms of how predetermined or fated they thought life to be. They also differed in the extent to which astrology was said to reflect fate. Of course, many additional perspectives are possible. Certain issues of practice are more subject to contentious debate than others. Few are more contentious than the nature of house division, the use of the tropical zodiac, and issues pertaining to when planets are benefic or malefic.
Brennan devotes an entire chapter to the house division issue Ch. Multiple sections of Chapter 7 Planets explain the distinction between benefics and malefics.
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This includes a discussion of how malefics can signify positively and benefics adversely. Sections on sect and an entire chapter on bonfiication and maltreatment conditions Ch. These distinctions go beyond rote labels of good and bad to get at our deep need to untangle the complicated web of strain, gain, loss, and pleasure so integral to the human experience. I have personally struggled with misconceptions regarding textual integrity.
The texts of Hellenistic astrology are very old and many do not survive in an early form in their original languages. Many of our English translations actually reflect later translations from Byzantine compilations, Arabic translations of Pahlavi translations of Greek, or even Latin translations of Arabic translations from the High Middle Ages. It is good to know the source of a given text and whether there is known evidence of corruptions and insertions. This is not just a book on the history and philosophy of early astrology.
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It is also a manual for using some practical Hellenistic techniques. After taking a deep dive into the history of astrology and the original set of factors, you will want to learn some practical Hellenistic astrology. However, it should be noted that his treatment just scratches the surface in terms of the available techniques of Hellenistic astrology see 6 below for more on this.
The point is to whet your appetite and inspire you to start reading source texts. Learn to see the chart the way astrologers did for about the first or so years that horoscopic astrology was practiced. I enrolled at Kepler College , where I studied for a year and received two certificates and several elective credits. In June stepped into the role of Vice President, and I look forward to serving the community in every way I can.
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I use traditional rulerships, focus on the seven traditional planets, use only the five classical aspects, and predominantly use whole sign houses. However, I do use outer planets sparingly and use Placidus houses as an overlay. I prefer exploring the themes, tones, and colors of the future a year at a time, the goal being to give context rather than divine exact future events.
For my future-based work, my main techniques used are annual profections in combination with solar returns.