Modern Mind, Traditional Technique
by Wonder Bright
One of the great advents of modern astrology was its merger with 20th century psychology. Certainly when I first studied the subject this connection is what drew me in. I’m driven by the need to understand others and when I can, to help them. Astrology cast those efforts in a totally new light. Suddenly, behavior in others I previously found confusing occurred to me as natural and even admirable. Better yet, astrology provided practical tools, right out of the box, which guided my efforts to listen, empathize, and advise.
Having caught the bug, I decided to attend Kepler College. There I studied the history of our craft, and also the techniques original to it. Being totally new to the astrological community, and certainly to the ancient teachings. my studies there were my first introduction to the differences in thinking between modern astrologers and the emerging traditional community. However, though the techniques were new to me, the use to which I wanted to put them remained the same. My interest was wholly practical: what were the Hellenistic techniques and how could I put them to use within a modern consulting practice grounded in character analysis?
You can imagine my delight when using traditional techniques caused a shift in perception similar to the one that occurred when I first discovered astrology. My ability to identify the core essence of a chart and what mattered to the native increased tenfold. The methods simplified my search for the strongest conflicts of the chart and brought past wounds and patterns firmly into view. While it’s true that traditional techniques were, in many ways, designed for prediction and certainly can be used for that, predicting events is not their limit, nor their sole power. If what you’re after is what matters most to your clients, and helping them play to their strengths whilst minimizing weakness, then traditional methods are hard to beat.
In my lecture at the 2013 NCGR Astrology Conference: Everything Under The Sun, I will address three components of the ancient framework that render traditional techniques perfectly suited for the modern practitioner:
-Hellenistic astrology is derived from a philosophical model that perceived the universe as perfect and sym
metrical – created by Divinity and rendered flawlessly.
-This “perfect cosmos” is illustrated by the way in which the ancients conceived of the zodiac, as a 360 degree circle divided into 12 equal parts with each sign opposing its polarity. This zodiac, which astrologers still use today, has an interdependent counterpart in traditional methods via their elegantly simple house system. The whole sign house system underscores the dynamics of polarity by bringing them directly into focus within a chart, whereby each sign equals a house.
-The ancient system of planetary rulerships beautifully illustrates the fundamental perfection of the cosmos as envisioned by the ancient mind, bringing to life hidden interactions between the houses and the areas of life most important to the native.
During the lecture, I will illustrate these principles using the charts of people in the audience. The technical focus will be on finding the Sun and its location relative to the Ascendant, as well as to notice the sign/house placement that is ruled by the Sun. Through this simple process, the elegance of the ancient methods will be revealed to be of tremendous value and benefit to the modern practitioner.
Wonder Bright (yes, that’s her real name) studied astrology at Kepler College and has also tutored privately with Demetra George. She has been seeing clients for over a decade and divides her time between analyzing people and taking photographs of them. You can read all about her adventures on her blog at www.starsofwonder.com.