In our last post we examined the general approach of delineating Solar Revolution and what we ought to look first at it. We discussed the Ptolemaic Ages and their rulers and how to incorporate the knowledge of them into our Solar Revolution delineation. We saw that the ruler of the Ptolemaic Ages gives an overall, more general picture of the underlying influences in more broader spectrum of years. We saw that the Sun would rule 19 years, which is really not a short period of time, and also examined how important the Solar Revolution for the year when Sun took the rulership of ages really is, and how this underpin all the other influence factors for the years and revolutions to come. In a way, there are two beginnings, the one beginning is the natal chart itself, and the other is the beginning of the chart of the revolution of the year when the planet ruling the Ptolemaic Ages took the control of the ages. In our subsequent posts we will see that we ought to look at the revolution when the Firdaria ruler also took the control, so we will have one more “beginning” into our examination.
Abu Ma’shar’s approach is not simple, but it is worth incorporating it in your astrological practice. Prediction through Astrology is not an easy task, it requires disciplined and right astrological thinking, knowledge and skill. This is why we will try to incorporate this approach in more than one post. This will presupposed that the individual practice of the techniques learned will be necessary if one wants to incorporate the knowledge gained into a astrological skill and wisdom.
I don’t know yet how many sequels this intention of mine to introduce Abu Ma’shar will have.
This is due to the reason that I’m a student and not a teacher or master, and I’m still learning every day something new from this beautiful art, which makes me excited and have the desire to share it with all the other people. There fore, I will leave this title open and the sequels may be 5,6 or more; as I will learn with the months, years to come I would surely post it and share all the things learned with the readers of this blog, if God wills.
We read, study and speak about astrology every day, but when a person comes to you as an astrologer and asks a simple question: “What to expect in this year“, all the debates, all the opinions on the subject stop and you ought to be a practical astrologer who would accurately give prediction of the events of the year this particular person is asking from you. They do not want to know when Abu Ma’shar was born, who he was, nor that he ever exist. All they want to know from you is the prediction; not a consultation, not a psychology mumbling, not a philosophizing, but a prediction of the year: what should they expect in the year in front of them.
I hear from the astrologers often today that Astrology can give only a broad scope of events, not a details of someone’s life. While there is some truth in this, I would not agree with this completely. Astrology does not lack details, astrologers and their adequacy do. We will see by examining Abu Ma’shar’s approach that Astrology is capable of giving details, and I think this is why Abu Ma’shar is complex subject for many.
Ibn Ezra’s Considerations Before Judgment
I know that we speak about Abu Ma’shar here, but I hope you will not sue me for introducing a little assistance from Ibn Ezra. Not that Abu Ma’shar lacks this, nor that we can’t do it without these advises of Ibn Ezra, but I just found them useful and not in contrary to Abu Ma’shar, just putted in another way.
These are from “The Book of Nativities and Revolutions” from Ibn Ezra, translated from Hebrew by Meira B. Epstein, and edited from the Latin translation by Robert Hand.
Consideration before judgment is a tittle given by Rob Hand I think, it is not a tittle given by Ibn Ezra, but fits the purpose.
In it Ibn Ezra shares some things one need to know in approaching delineation of every individual horoscope.
1st thing one need to take into consideration is from which nation the native is. Because, if you find in his nativity, and consequently by an individual revolution, that he will become a King, for Israelite this could not be possible, because says Ibn Ezra, “it has been already made clear from the Great Conjunction, which is the conjunction of Saturn and Jupiter that this nation would be in exile”.
So, having this mind, you can’t predict kingship of a person who just can’t be a king in the times in which it is born. In other words, one need to compare the individual horoscope with the actual mundane events around and take measures from this.
Also, if you find Saturn in 9th in Israelite, you would not say that his religion is improper, because Saturn rules the Jews, but in the nativity of a Muslim, this would be so, because the Muslims are mundane represented by Venus, and Saturn as a natural malefic in 9th house of religion would show its improper effects on this subject in the life of the individual.
2nd thing is to judge from the regions. One born in the back then called Kush, even though if he has Venus and Moon rising with the ascendant degree, would not designate the beautiful face of the native nor white. Similarly, if the ruler of the nativity is Mercury, one would not judge that he will be learned in all sciences, because people from Kush lack this because of the excessive heat of the Sun. You will compare him with the people inside the region, and he will have some things above the things average there, but he will not be comparatively above the standards of some other region.
Kush was a southern province of Nubia, now Republic of Sudan in Africa.
3rd thing is the consideration of the Great Conjunction on each country.. That is, to consider the mundane influences. So, if some mundane event for your city, predicts catastrophe of greatest measures, for example, that the citizens will be killed by sword, even though the individual horoscope does not shows death by sword, it will be so because of the mundane influences, and the individual is a part of the whole. So what effects the whole, effects him too.
4th thing is to consider the revolution of the world. For if some revolution of the world shows that disease will come into your place, you will most probably not be prevented from it, because the individual chart can’t cancel the general.
Remember that these considerations were given in a time when diseases can ruin whole cities.
5th thing you need to take into account, is the consideration of the family. Because, if someone is born into a family of minister, and other in a family of servants, and if the revolution (and nativity supports prosperity and high social status) shows dignity in that year, the first one can become a King and the second one merchant.
6th thing you need to look ought, is the consideration of the chart of the King. Because, if the chart of the king shows that he will enter a war in this year, you would most probably not be spared from it, even though your individual chart shows prosperity and all the good things. So you must always look at the individual chart in the general context of the world surrounding you.
7th thing you need to observe, is the consideration of the Nature. If you cast an election chart to travel with ship oversea, and you put Jupiter and Venus on the ascending degree, you can’t neglect the natural factors like probable storms and general prognostication of the weather. Your own electional chart can’t cancel the nature’s purposes.
8th thing in the considerations before judgment is the native’s wisdom and knowledge of the science of the stars (i.e. Astrology). By this knowledge you can prevent your self from excessive heat when Mars happens to transit your ascendant, by balancing your humors through the means of diet for example.
So, you ought to have all these in mind when you approach delineation. Abu Ma’shar says the exact same things in his book, only in other way.
In order to approach this great subject of Revolutions and to take all in to consideration, we must approach deductively and inductively as well, and explain the tools one by one. Therefore, here we will discuss the incorporation of the Profections to the Solar Revolutions.
“In a revolution of years it is good to look at the horoscope of the nativity, and to compute one sign for every year, and where it applied, that one will be the sign of the profection, whose Lord will be the Lord of the Year” (Abu Ma’shar – On Solar Revolutions, Dykes trans., p.74)
We talked in our previous article, that Abu Ma’shar was following Vettius Valens in assigning the lordship to the planet which is actually in the sign of the annual profections, instead of the ruler of the sign, because the presence is more immediate and strong than the rulership. If there is no planet in the sign of the annual profections, we should look at the Revolution if there exist some planet which ingressed the sign. If there is no such planet and the place is empty in the nativity and in the revolution, only in that case the ruler of the sign is taken as the Lord of the Year.
What you need to take into consideration here is the following:
1. You will notice which sign is that sign by number from the ascendant. For example, if Cancer is rising, Scorpio would be 5th sign and in 28th year will be the sign of the annual profections.
2. See whose domicile, whose exaltation and whose triplicity is that sign.
3. Look at the planet/s that falls in that sign in the nativity, particular Lot or twelfth-part.
4. Look at the aspects this sign is receiving from the planets around the wheel. From what sign or degree, bound or ninth-part is the aspect made.
5. Look if there is a planet in the same sign in the revolution, or aspects to the sign, or particular twelfth-part. Look at those planet’s state in the nativity and revolution as well.
6. Look where the sign of the annual profections falls from the revolution’s ascendant and vise versa.
The State of the Lord of the Year (LOY)
Then what you need to observe is the state of the LOY in the nativity and in the Solar Revolution.
Is it direct in each figure (natal and revolution)?
Is it retrograde?
Is it combust or Under the Sun’s Beams?
Is it in its own places or not?
is it receiving bad or good aspects, from benevolents and malevolents?
Is it in good or bad zodiacal shape?
Is it oriental or occidental?
Is it in sect or contrary to the sect in favor?
Compare all the testimonies in the nativity and in the revolution for measuring the power of the LOY. If same configurations were repeated in both figures, the significations are more strong. If they are dissimilar in the most of the cases, then judge the mediocre.
For example, if in the nativity Mars as LOY makes square to the Sun and is contrary to the sect in favor, but in the revolution is in trine relationship and of the sect in favor, then the bad significations from the natal figure, will be somewhat lessened in the year. If Mars was trine Jupiter and was in sect in both figures, then judge more positive things and etc.
This is a sample nativity. The smaller icons around the wheel are the twelfth-part of the planets and points. Morinus software does not calculate the twelfth part of the houses so we will do this by our selves.
We will investigate the 27th year, so the annual profections came to the 4th sign Libra and Moon will be the LOY because of her presence there.
The sign is 4th from the ascendant. Issues of home and family will be activated.
Whose sign is this? It is Venus’ sign. What is the nature of Venus? It denotes Love, desire for sexual bonding, pleasures, music, enjoying and etc.
She is in the 6th sign, which is a wicked place and for sure not happy for all the significations of Venus. She can’t perform here, this is a cadent and weak place, also wicked. She is non-profitable, and whatever she likes to bring, falls apart in some way.
She is also peregrine.
Whose exaltation Libra is? It is Saturn’s exaltation. Saturn natally does not aspect the sign, he is turned away but he is by transit in the sign.
Whose triplicity Libra is? It is Saturn’s, Mercury’s and Jupiter’s triplicity.
Is there are a twelfth-parts in that sign? Yes, the twelfth-part of Venus is here, so again we have accentuation on Venus here.
We must go back to the nativity once again and delineate it.
Moon is a ruler of the nativity and she is in 4th sign in which this year the annual profections falls. Moon and Cancer on the ascendant denotes sensitive nativity, a nativity which somehow wants to hold on to the people, in a way with clingy. The connection of Moon and Venus, among other things, shows the appetite for love and pleasures, foods and every kind of enjoying. Moon applies widely to Venus and Venus receives her but from cadent place and peregrine.
So, this sextile between Moon and Venus would be highly activated in this year.
Is there a lot in the sign of the annual profections? These Lots are found there:
Pars Hyleg/ Lot of Work and Kingship/Lot of Faith/Lot of Exaltation and Lot of Journeys.
They will all have some significance in the year. For example, Lot of exaltation showed that the nativity would achieve some recognition in the year. The nativity is a musician and he aquired a recognition in the year. The Lot of Work and Kingship also denotes this.
So, you would merge the significations of every particular lot activated through the sign of annual profections.
One note of caution though. The significations of the Lots would have been more strong if for example the ascendant of the revolution hits some Lot directly, like in the example I gave in my previous post about the Lot of Mother.
What aspects this sign receives from the planets in the nativity?
Venus is regarding it by sextile as we already said. Jupiter and Mercury by square, and Sun by trine. Mercury in relation to the Moon will be important for the intellectual knowledge this persons acquires in the year. Jupiter for the religion and faith of the native because rules 9th and naturally signifies this. Sun for career and status because rules 10th and naturally signifies this. Sun is in airy, human sign and the aspect is by trine. It may be that people would assist the native to achieve some recognition in this year, but this is less then promised and what was hoped for because Sun is in detriment . From which degree Sun throws its rays to the sign of annual profections? From a masculine and smoky degree. Abu Ma’shar in Great Introduction says that this smoky degrees are “shadowy” and “gloomy”, they signify “small mishap” not as much as the dark degrees. They are like neutral (though more inclined toward bad quality) in quality to do good (like the bright degrees) or bad (like the dark ones). Mercury is in a bright degree but otherwise is peregrine, though received by Saturn and Mars. Mercury received by its oriental superior masters in bright degree shows good mental qualities. By accidental determination and rulership of 12th also shows enemies and mental arguments because of the square to the Moon as ruler of the nativity and LOY.
Now lets look at the revolution.
Are there planets in the sign of the annual profections (Libra)?
Saturn is there! In this revolution Saturn is a malefic contrary to the sect.
Saturn in the nativity rules the 7th is in 5th of the pleasures.
We need to weight the indications now.
In the nativity Saturn is of the sect, direct and oriental, in alien sign but received, in good house.
In the revolution Saturn is contrary to the sect, direct and oriental but will turn retrograde just two days after the birthday!
So, Saturn is a mixed bag, and in this revolution is more inclined toward bad significations or at least nor producing good qualities of events. Sometimes the badness is looked in the lack of good. It is not necessary to happens something enormously bad thing in order the quality of life to be felt as lacking in positivity or enjoyment. What we can see here is that a poor Saturn just to be stationing, contrary to the sect, cadent by divisions, a malefic by nature, standing upon the ruler of the nativity and LOY, which is Moon and aspecting by domination Venus in 12th of the revolution, will for sure negate some pleasures and enjoyments.
Now lets look at Moon and Venus. In the nativity they are in sextile, Moon widely applies toward Venus and Venus receives it. In the revolution they aspect each other by square!
Lets weight those two.
In the nativity Moon and Venus are contrary to the sect in favor. Venus is in a bad house and cadent. The same is in the revolution, she is in a bad house and cadent, but in sect.
Mediocre judgments. So, there will be amorous event in the year (natal ascendant falls in 7th of the revolution, this is further signification), but there will be denying, struggle and conflicts because of a woman or with a woman which will eventually lead into separation.
Moon is in Virgo, a sign which is of those that signifies “searching for marriage” as Abu Ma’shar puts it.
The twelfth part of the 7th house of the revolution falls with the Moon in Virgo, again testifying about the importance of the partnership in this year, but also activating the Venus square, alongside with the significations of the 7th house.
And so on. There are much more deeper things to investigate in this revolution, but we are going step by step here, and this article get longer then I expected so I must stop here and leave the other indications for the future article.
One more thing I want to point out here is the calculation of the twelfth parts. You will take the degree and minutes of the actual planet or point in the chart and you will multiply it with 12. Then, you will start to count that distance from the beginning of the sign where the particular planet or point stands.
I only gave a shallow judgments on the particular revolution, in order to show the application of the techniques. From this one can see how complicated is the judgment of a particular prediction, even in post factum explanations; one need to take many significations into consideration and not only to pronounce things based on intuition or quick judgments. Prediction requires rational astrological thinking and application of certain tools and techniques based on years and years experience from the elders.
Till the next time: practice, practice and practice.
Rabbi Avraham Ibn Ezra – The Book of Nativities and Revolutions, translated and annotated from Hebrew manuscripts by Meira B. Epstein, edited with additional annotations from the Latin Translation by Robert Hand.
Abu Ma’shar – On Solar Revolutions, translated and edited by Benjamin N. Dykes, PhD, the Cazimi Press, Minneapolis, Minnesota 2010