Our NCGR Group Insights

by Robin Armstrong

                Over the Fall we have been introduced to three more systems of degree analysis. Each of the three are very distinct from the others. So much personal study time is necessary to do justice to any one degree system, that the addition of three more sets of degree meaning is overwhelming. None-the-less we persevered and looked at how the sensitive points in our own charts related. As you will notice the size of our journal has had to increase substantially.

                The first system we began to work with was the I Ching symbols as a zodiac of 64 divisions with a correspondence between each degree of the zodiac and a specific line within a hexagram. The I Ching dates back to the traditions, astronomy, and rituals of ancient China. It has always presented a means of learning through divination. Its traditions were oral until about 1200 BC. It is involved with the nature of duality: the firm and the yielding, which came to be known as yin and yang in more recent years. Scholars such as Confucius and Lao Tsu were familiar with and added to the material on the I Ching. From its very roots the I Ching represented an astrological tradition. The earliest record of the I Ching being in existence (and being used by an emperor) was 3,300 BC.

                The I Ching is a very detailed system with pages of information on each degree. Because of its detail and depth we have decided to proceed slowly. Each person was given the three hexagrams relating to their Sun’s natal position. In this system each degree has three levels of depth in it and three corresponding hexagrams. The verdict is still pending. Some members felt that this was the deepest and most profound symbolism yet encountered. Others, however had difficulty relating to the oriental logic. A few studies have been returned. The one’s in this volume concern only the first level hexagram. Our section “Degrees of Concern” also refers to the level one hexagram for the exact zodiacal degree of astronomical conjunctions that occur over the winter.

                While Charubel’s and Sepharial’s images have spiritualist roots, Alan Leo and Ada Muir held to the principles of theosophy. The I Ching symbolism transmutes the zodiac into oriental mysticism of the kind associated with Confucianism, Taoism, and Buddhism. Each system so far has presented its own interpretive challenges to the user. We seem to be assessing the archetypal images of various spiritual databases.

                The second system we studied is a very modern one. The symbols were obtained through the mediumship of John Sandbach of Kansas City. He calls them the Chandra symbols after the spirit guide that came through him. The Chandra symbols at first glance seemed very nice but somewhat light and even trivial. We read them, made a quick assessment and that was it. No big heavy hits, just a curious familiarity or association. We took the symbols home and worked with them for a month. On returning, everyone was positively impressed, and could relate to their degree symbols emphatically.

                These Chandra symbols became alive as each person concentrated on them. It was as if the more you concentrated on them, the more understanding developed. The symbols moved from rational thought to emotional considerations, and on to imaginative insights, with ease. They felt friendly and familiar. They seemed to direct you in a positive direction and yet still provided realistic contrast in looking at more negative implications.

                The feeling around our group is that these new Chandra symbols are something else! They are new, refreshing, and inspiring. Like a wise old master with the innocence of a child in his eyes. There is much to learn from Chandra. We are all going to do a lot more with these degree implications. Congratulations go out to John Sandbach for his successful accomplishment of bringing through a new set of degree symbols and getting them published.

You can order “Degree Analyses Part II: Chandra Symbols in the Horoscope” from John Sandbach directly.

To order send $8.00 US (this includes postage) to

John Sandbach, 3704 Baltimore St., Kansas City, MO 64111.

                The third set of degree meanings that we have studied come from Paulus Alexandrinus of Greece, circa 378 AD. In his degree assessment, called “Monomoiria”, Alexandrinus gives each degree a planetary ruler and leaves it to you to work on the emphasis implied.

                The work of this Greek Astrologer has not been adequately available in English until this past summer. Thanks to the pioneering spirit and dedicated zeal of three Roberts and one Ellen, who developed PROJECT HINDSIGHT. The three Roberts are Robert Hand, Robert Schmidt, and Robert Zoller. The Ellen is Ellen Black.

                Project Hindsight was initiated this year to translate into English the major astrological texts from Latin, Greek, and Arabic manuscripts. The emphasis is on a competent assessment of their astrological content and techniques. Five works have already been translated and published over the last four months. This enormous project is moving along rapidly and successfully. This material will change scholastic opinion about astrology, and it will both restore and preserve our western astrological heritage.

                You can help keep Project Hindsight moving. Subscriptions are available. Write to Project Hindsight, c/o Golden Hind Press, P.O. Box 002, Berkeley Springs, WV 25411, USA, or call (304)-258-5873. (Rob will probably answer.) Help make history. Subscribe to the Project Hindsight Journals. Keep the translators working. It helps us all.

                We took the Paulus Alexandrinus monomoiria home for a month and worked on them. It seemed difficult at first. Some gave up initially because of its lack of guided text or symbolic image. It was hard to think clearly or measure the effect. Getting a foothold seemed at first perplexing and evasive until we let go and just read into the planet degree symbol unconditionally. Once you began to think of your sun conjunct or in aspect to the degree ruler, associations could be made and ideas began to flow. This system grows on you. The more you reflect the more it is there. But it unfolds slowly over time as you contemplate the nature of the degree ruler. It sits there like a guardian angel …… silent but present.

                These planet associations grow and easily interpenetrate the fundamental understanding of the horoscope. Such as: if Mercury were the ruler then mercury would affect you as it is suggested in your natal chart ….. with all the pitfalls, challenges, and healing implications. If your mercury is afflicted then this would be a more difficult degree! Thanks to Project Hindsight (Vol. 1, Paulus Alexandrinus “Introductory Matters”) we are able to include the Table of Planetary Degree Rulers for your contemplation. They are not psychic, not mystical, …. they are astrological!

                Our plates were full this fall. We give thanks, but we did have to delay our introduction to the Sabian Symbols until next issue. We welcome any written input or degree assessments from our readers.