The story following, if apocryphal, is instructive. Seeking directions to a specific street in Copenhagen, Sören consults his friend Georg. By reply he receives a map of Europe! Some answers make us wonder if we are asking good questions. Even street names, evidently, have this potential. Is there a street named “Am I knowable“?
Welcome back to the Astrologers’ Folio. It matters not how long you have been away—you are back–and at just the right moment!
In recent posts we have been considering First Principles, the Decanates, the Gematria (Hebrew letters) and some numerology. We have also explored the nature of waking and non-waking awareness—associating waking awareness with the Sun and non-waking awareness with the Moon. We have made it a point to repeat the axiom, “all unity is plural”. And last, we mention a refrain important to Western Mystery Tradition studies : G-d* is something Nature hath not made.
* [Omitting the letter “o” to complete the spelling of “God” was deemed an act of hubris and thereby to be avoided. The humbler abbreviation, “G-d”, for millenia–was the convention.]
Head spinning? We recall there are 36 First Principles and 36 Decanates. There are also 22 Hebrew letters; and the Hebrew word for “Life” is represented by the number 18. The rudiments keep coming and they are several.
What was the question?
Am I knowable!
Did you notice, two philosophers (not two astrologers), Sören Kierkegaard and Georg W. F. Hegel, are introduced to open this post? Is this the Philosophers’ Folio or the Astrologers’ Folio? Are they so different? Astrology, as a wisdom seeking endeavor, is a philosophy. In 1934 in Los Angeles, the renown ancient arts scholar and hermetician, Manly P. Hall, founded the Philosophical Research Society. In 1943 he wrote and published, “The Philosophy of Astrology“.
Philosophy, astrology included, makes enquiry of lived and conjectured experience. Philosophy differs from astrology by method not mission: each is truth seeking.
Philosophy marshals reason to militate premise from conclusion. Astrologers, for their purposes, rely almost exclusively upon symbols, color and numbers from which interpretive inferences may be constructed. The symbolic representation of lived and conjectured experience, astrologically speaking, is thereby virtually wordless. The written argument is the modality of choice for most philosophical discourse.
A natural philosopher, example, chemist or physicist, is different yet again, bound as the they are by the rigors of scientific method requiring hypothesis, then experiment followed by independent verification. No similar guardrails of protocol constrain Astrology’s capacity to wander or wonder. The Fool of the Tarot comes to mind. Much philosophical inquiry, other than the sciences, is similarly unbounded.
The provenance of the Philosopher: the outer world available to the senses in a waking state.
A priori, for the Astrologer, non-waking awareness as symbol, color, number and archetype.
The philosopher draws deeply from lived experience we associate with the waking state. The non-waking state is the domain of the Astrologer’s discovery. Philosophy narrates: Astrology visualizes. Philosophy relies upon words as Logos to move ideas. Imagery and associations propel astrological insight.
Philosophy and astrology routinely disappoint their sponsors. The philosopher writes tirelessly, deconstructs endlessly, only to determine there is yet another level of granularity, or opposition, less and less animated, more and more removed from life, to consider as first cause. Nineteenth century Russian novels come to mind.
The astrologer navigates the wordless landscape of the horoscope by the ‘moonlight’ of intuition not reason. In this sense, the astrologer has much in common with the shaman. Disbelief must be suspended. This is a key idea!
“Although we know a fair amount about the brain activity linked with reading, no one has isolated the mechanisms tied specifically to suspension of disbelief.” (As reported by Michael Mueller and published by Scientific American in January 2014).
Suspending disbelief may be a form of self-suggestion whereby waking (outer) and non-waking (inner) states conflate in Time. Think: Alice in Wonderland.
If we were fully individuated (Jung), fully actualized (Maslow), or no longer hysterical (Freud)—we would likely be silent–naked, unashamed, and safe. We would “arrive already loved!” to invite the remarkable Mariah Fenton Gladis to this discussion.
In the Western Mystery Tradition, the domain of heaven shares liminal space with the non-waking state.
The Astrologer’s privilege is to prepare. And to listen.
Am I knowable?
Suspend thy disbelief!
We bid you peace. Frater A
Should you have time to consider a musical reflection to accompany this post, we refer you to Jamie Reid’s instrumental performance “How Great Thou Art” —from the album “Psalms, Hymns and Spiritual Songs” by the Christian Artists Jazz Network. Post No. 7 is about transformation–where we begin to take seriously the domain of the non-waking deep-Self where “Thy Will be Done” awaits.
A Reference of symbols, charts and definitions important to Western Mystery Tradition studies is listed as Post No. 900. Enter “900” in the Search box to be directed to this location.
For your amusement and reflection, a few quotations follow to keep your company until our next opportunity to share what is good and lasting, in faith, together.
“I don’t believe in astrology; I’m a Sagittarius and we’re skeptical,” Arthur C. Clarke, science fiction writer, b. 1917 Sagittarius
“Music is monophonic in the Eastern world, especially if we’re talking about Indian music, Persian music. What we have in classical and Western world is harmony.” Hafez Nazari, b. 1979, living, traditional Persian music, dastgāh Leo
““Metaphorically speaking, a person’s ideas must be the building he lives in – otherwise there is something terribly wrong.” ,” Søren Kierkegaard b. 1813 (Provocations: Spiritual Writings of Kierkegaard) Taurus
“When we want to see an oak, we are not satisfied to be shown an acorn instead. In the same way science, the crowning glory of a spiritual world, is not found complete in its initial stages,” Georg W. F. Hegel b. 1770 (Preface to the Phenomenology of Spirit, 1807) Virgo
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