A little story of humanistic astrology
Astrology is intimately linked to its time. The way it has evolved depends on men, the environment and society in which they live, and especially their concerns, their questions towards life, nature, the "divine", and their relationship to all this.
Thus astrology today, and especially Humanistic Astrology corresponds to the man and woman of the 21st century, which no longer have the same questions that man and woman from 1st century of from the Middle Ages.
The origin of astrology dates back to the days of ancient Egypt (4000 years BC). Even Atlantis (10 or 20,000 years BC)... Western astrology has its roots in Chaldea, a region in Mesopotamia, and developed itself during the 6th century BC. That does not mean that before the men were not connected to the sky and planets, but they approached them differently. The 6th century BC is a key period of transition, the time of Buddha, where human values have been deeply transformed.
Representation of the celestial sphere
Since Chaldea, astrology has developed and spread in the Mediterranean countries, Greece, Rome (individual horoscopes) and Egypt. Ptolemy, the "Prince of astrologers" made a synthesis of all knowledge of the past, and linked it to his own understanding (1st century). Ptolemy's work remains the foundation of all occidental astrology.
Rudhyar says that to understand the essence of astrology, we must forget Ptolemy and the medieval astrology, to achieve the vital depths of archaic humanity.
What is astrology ?
Astrology is based on the law of analogy which presupposes the existence of a universal agent, a vital substance filling all space.
The analogy replaces one thing with another, ie by observing the planets, which are a physical reality, and their positions in the sky, you can find the equivalent in man, in internal functions related to each other.
Astrology is based on the physical reality of the world.
Astrology is the study of stars. In the sense that the largest (the macrocosm) is identical to the smallest (the microcosm), astrology connects heaven to man. The observation of the sky allows us to understand man and integrate its development in cycles.
Humanistic astrology places man at the center of the chart, he becomes the main component ; there are no determinating factors or influences of planets on humans. Each man has his free will and decides alone for his own life.
The study of a chart will show us the possibilities, the potential that everyone can use and develop for his accomplishment. The study of cycles will enable us to decode stages of life, understand the challenges and crises that arise, and how we can integrate and tranform them.
Dane Rudhyar, who created the term "humanistic astrology" has been a pioneer in this area by linking astrological traditional culture to Jung's psychology of depths and the esoterism of Alice Bailey and HP Blavatsky.
Dane Rudhyar was born in France under the name of Daniel Chenneviere in 1895. He emigrated to the United States in 1916, he was then musician, and began a career in New York. He found later an interest in the esoterism and Buddhism. Interested in astrology, he discovered the writings of Jung in the 1930's. He then had the idea to link the two, and since 1935 he began publishing articles that are revolutionized he world of astrology.
He no longer speaks of character, forecasts, astral influences beneficial or malevolent, but places man at the center of the chart.
For Rudhyar, the astrological chart is a tool that helps us to see the possibilities and potentialities of a person at birth.
Rudhyar is also a philosopher. He integrates human in his history and society, and seeks to change the person in an individual (meaning not divisible), so that everyone finds his or her place in the society and the whole. There is an intention behind the universe, astrology and the chart tell us what we potentially are, and how we can respond to this intention to the universe by living our chart.
Humanistic astrology works in this context, it is a tool for understanding the human being, and his evolution. Each person can seek through humanistic astrology to understand the meaning of life and become a true individual, not divisible.
Rudhyar says the events are not important, the way we use them enables us to transform ourselves inwardly.
Mandala drawn by Rudhyar
In humanistic astrology, we use the mandala chart, in which the axis of the horizon is perpendicular to the axis of the meridian. All the deep understanding of the chart stands on the mandala chart.
Rudhyar says : "In the Astrology of personality, I defined a mandala as "a magic circle containing a cross or some other basically fourfold formulation". adding that "every birth chart is the mandala of an individual life".
[...] The basic factor in a mandala being the center, it follows that no mandala make sense unless we know to what its center refers.
[...] What I demand of my birth-chart is that it should tell me how I can truly become an individual able to actualize as fully as possible my birth potential. It can tell me these things [...] only if this birth-chart has the "I" at its center. It has to be the mandala of my individual selfhood, and not a mandala to guide mankind-as-a-whole." (Extract from "From humanistic to transpersonal astrology" Dane Rudhyar, The seed Center.)
On this basis matrix, the principal axes correspond to the cross of incarnation.
If one places the man at the center of the chart standing, his feet are rooted to the bottom (IC Imum Coeli), his head pointing towards the Midheaven (MC Medium Coeli). The arms are stretched horizontally.
The axis of the meridian is the "backbone" of the individual, the roots of each mingling with common roots of humanity at the center of the Earth, and the head pointing towards a unique symbolic star, signifying completion, achievement, accomplishment. The axis of power is based on the release of power, individual power concentrated in the IC projects itself in a form of collective-social power at the MC.
The axis of the horizon symbolizes how a person is aware of his unique selfhood at the Ascendant, and aware of others as different persons at the Descendant. This is the axis of consciousness, a constant relationship is established between self and others.