By Noel Tyl (author of “The Horoscope as Identity” and the twelve volume series
“The Principles and Practice of Astrology”)
Recently, I had my horoscope analyzed by a widely touted computer service It took two months to complete. I was prepared for revelation. When I received the read-out, any hope for insight, discovery, or vindication was displaced by sheer entertainment: my life consisted of static descriptions, amounting to something like ten lords a-leaping, nine maids a-milking, eight swans a-swimming … and no golden rings’
It appeared that I was well-packaged, had good shelf position, and often stimulated impulse acceptance — I was a commodity. But so much was missing that a seasoned astrologer could see within ten seconds looking at ·my horoscope, the computer did not see. Simple deductions were overlooked by the machine when they would be the spine of my entire life analysis in the hands of a skilled astrologer, one who would translate description into deduction, deduction into behavior.
Computer description techniques do not stop with machines: there are horoscopes being done by many people that do little more than enumerate, pidgeon-hole, and measure the feathers on the partridge and the pears on the tree. Astrology is so very often static in delineation, suspended in reference, and sterile in service
To us as practitioners and teachers, this is nothing new. Often, the difference between Static delineations and living analysis is attributed to the difference between astrologers: some are cook-book chefs and some are artists. This stems in part from the individual make-up of the individual astrologers. — But I feel that overemphasis of the artistic potential of one practitioner is at the expense of the scientific potential of the other Perhaps, to improve our service, we should look at the techniques we all have available to us in the XX century, to beep Astrology in pace with the times. Perhaps we are astrologers at all levels, of all skills, of similar dedication are not using enough of what is around us to understand the world that is within.
In science, at the turn of the century, human behavior was measured in terms of response to stimuli: the flutter of the eyelid to intensification of light; skin response to heat and cold. At the same time, Leo and Sepharial were measuring Transits and Progressions in stimulus-response theory: the life would flutter, heat up, or turn cold in response to astrological stimuli. — We all know those foreboding paragraphs, those dreaded inevitabilities that described man on a shelf waiting to be marked down by Fate or somehow lost within the market.
This was science: something makes something happen dependably. This was Astrology for the most part in a time when limited travel opportunities and limited educational opportunities affected the symbolism of Mercury and Jupiter when social stratification limited the ambition and the significance of Saturn; when social-sexual mores limited the potentials of creative expression throughout the horoscope. Neptune was very young and promised to help explain characterlogical and behavioral anomalies; Pluto was yet to come … and so was a new century.
Science was stimulus and response. XX century science began to look to the inner man, to his own inner stimuli. The art of deduction and artistic interpretation were born to join physiological awareness. In this century of psycho-analysis and behaviorisms, man can travel and learn as never before; he can express his ambition and social awareness as never before; it is a time when individuality is accentuated. Monuments of academia, society, and government have toppled to the intensified wills of people. Psychology has become the science to understand individual behavior.
As XX century astrologers, we are psychologists. We make measurements and descriptive deductions as before, but — in these faster, more individualized times — we must convert descriptive measurements into actual behaviors; we must give deductions the substance of developmental expression. Every astrologer, every student can enrich his service through Astrology by using Psychological premises.
For example: Psychology recognizes individuality through the concept of NEED. Needs make things happen. A person feels a need, responds in action, hopes for reward, gains fulfillment or frustration, and makes behavioral-developmental adjustments. The personality develops in relation to the measure of success and failure of need satisfaction. Needs bring personality to life.
Beginning a horoscope analysis with an awareness of the reigning need shown within it immediately brings the horoscope into vital behavioral development.
We see the reigning need through the symbol of the Moon. Our libraries are filled with books describing the Moon in its Signs. The descriptions are invariably static: the Moon in Virgo gives good mental ability; the native is usually quiet, unostentatious and unpretentious; “the Moon in Leo makes one ambitious, self-confident, self-reliant, theatrical”, — As soon as we turn the words around, introducing the concept of need, recognizing the voice of the individual in arranging his life as he needs it to be, our analysis of the horoscope immediately takes on a dynamic that is behavioral rather than descriptive: the native with the Moon in Virgo needs to prove his mental ability; the native with the Moon in Leo needs the center of the stage to fulfill his life among others.
As soon as we mention the word need, our own XX century minds begin to tell us how such a person reacts to himself, how such a person ·expresses his individuality. The aspects to the Moon will condition the reigning need with what psychologists call “need press” the House placement and dispositor dynamics involved with the Moon and its aspect configurations will illuminate how and where the reigning need operates for the individual. Transits and Progressions will tell us how the need is developed within time, within the environment.
A small alteration of words introduces a dynamic living concept of behavioral energy. Houdini with his Moon in Sagittarius needed to project himself into public awareness. This soaring need was in the Tenth House, within a Fire Grand Trine, and was sextile to Saturn (supporting ambition). We immediately begin to feel the showman, the self-advertiser, the essential need that made the man a legend. Need analysis of the Moon in Sagittarius reveals potentials of behavior so much more eloquently that a static description of being jovial, benevolent, loving sports, quick restless manner, ingenuity, etc.” – The point is that Houdini – or anybody else – is not simply “something” rather, he needs To BE something. In this light, it is impossible to shelve a personality and label it. It becomes much easier and More productive to see a personality as its own magician, affecting its own process of becoming. Then, every measurement of development within time has a goal, an arena in which to grow and fulfill itself.
The context of need theory expands to all the other planets as well. The delineations of the other planets reveal subsidiary needs: Saturn suggests the need to fulfill a particular kind of ambition; Jupiter suggests the need to gain a particular kind of opportunity, reward, and recognition in life. For example, Houdini’s Saturn was in Aquarius: his need to fulfill ambition had to be through some unique social projection (Winston Churchill, Bob Hope also). His Jupiter was in Virgo: his reward and opportunity need was extremely dependent upon painstaking attention to details, care and caution … certainly the personality dimension that saved his life repeatedly.
Blending the need suggestions of Saturn and Jupiter within the horoscope is extremely rewarding in vocational analysis. If one has Saturn in Virgo, we know that analysis of ambition will reveal a need to rely upon detail. We know from our knowledge of life that the behavior that will follow this need will assimilate drudgery easily in order to prove a point conclusively. With this kind of need, this is how a person behaves in these times. If this same person has Jupiter in Leo, suggesting the kind of reward he will need in his life, for recognition of his ambition, we know it will be highly theatrical. He will need the center of the stage; he will need appreciation greatly, even more than financial reward.
Putting these needs together, the challenge upon the identity will be to place his ambition and life development within some area that will bring him the kind of reward he needs. “Detail management” can attract attention, appreciation, can be extremely, dramatically valuable in a show business tax office, for example; a controller for a professional sports organization; a travelling business manager, etc.
With the description of subsidiary needs, we immediately are analyzing behavior within the process of becoming. Static descriptions are left b~hind. Aspects and House placements define these needs more clearly. Blending with the reigning need in terms of the Moon 1eads the analysis still further. Measurement of developmental pressure — Progressions and Transits suggest behavioral substance in terms of life-needs. an analysis of growth is achieved by wedding individual need-energy with environmental press within time.
Psychology offers the astrologer so much within need theory. For example, Abraham Maslow, a professor of psychology at Brandeis University, asserted that man has an inborn nature that is essentially good, never evil. The novelty of this theory when it was introduced was that most psychological theories assumed that man’s instincts and motives were bad and must be trained to do good work through socialization. (How many astrologers and astrological texts assume the same?)
Maslow maintained that man becomes wicked, miserable, or neurotic only because the environment has made him so. In other words, man becomes negative when his needs are not fulfilled in good enough measure by his interaction with the environment. As soon as frustration is removed, aggression disappears.
Maslow’s motivational theory is based upon a hierarchy, a priority or potency of needs. He suggests that needs follow a hierarchical order from the need of the greatest potency to the need of the least; when the stronger need is fulfilled, the next need upon the scale asserts itself and demands fulfillment. The order begins with the physiological needs such as hunger and thirst, then the safety and shelter needs, needs for belonging and love, then esteem needs, needs to know, and thon aesthetic needs. All persons share this continuum. Astrologically, the Moon ‘s position and aspect condition will represent the reigning need embracing specia1 dimensions, the whole hierarchy that works toward self fulfillment.
Whereas aggression disappears with the decrease of need tension, the re-introduction of tension can bring back into the personality frustration energy that produces greater growth and fulfillment by stimulating need tensions at some higher level on the personal continuum. This is the phenomenon we witness during strong Progressions and Transits: need tension is re-introduced upon the individual continuum. The tension demands response. Fulfillment of the aroused need supports further growth.
How often do we see individuals who haveo stopped doing things in life? Their major needs are satisfied or are aslesp. Life has become routine. They look to the astrologer to divine some magic change. Perhaps, in the knowledge of need theory, it is our job to develop tension, re-introduce aggression at some level within the individual ‘s continuum of needs in order to stimulate further growth and interest in life The perceptive astrologer accomplishes this by helping the client to build self-motivation, to energize the hierarchy of needs in a way that makes things happen, that brings the personality to life,
Understanding need theory within astrology is related closely to understanding the management of tension. We live in an era and within a culture that place upon us more tension than ever before in history. Our mechanized society and the pressures to excel as individuals threaten us continually At the same time, our luxury-oriented style of living tells us to avoid this tension at all costs! This is the dilemma that triggers nervous breakdowns, bad backs, divorce of all kinds, and the fears of anonymity.
Knowledge of need theory respects the individual in his own personal terms and can help within the dilemma. Astrology can guide the individual to preparation for and acceptance of tension. The process of becoming can be vitalized by strategic awareness of individual needs, their tension and fulfillment within time. A personal astrology must be as alive as the person
We live in a century of Psychology, of science dedicated to understanding individuality. It ray be a symptom of the Aquarian Dawn, but it is definitely an era in which our Astrology must recognize the whole of the individual, not in static terms of century-old descriptions, but in terms of dynamic personality function, fulfilling personal needs.
Unity is the goal assumed at birth and the end product achieved through life. These days, we call it “getting it all together”. The final freedom from tension is reached through death, a return to unity with the Creative Spirit. With every step of development to that end, there is a tension to achieve a new or greater unity. In the process of becoming, unity is a matter of degree.
The process of psychological or astrological synthesis uncovers the inclination to unity and defines the tensions en route, the degrees of fulfillment. Psychology postulates stages of development within life, and Astrology measures the development of inclinations within time. Both seek to understand the reason for and the efforts of change with reference to a goal of personality completion. Needs make things happen. Needs must be what we measure.
Indeed, my computer horoscope analysis measured me descriptively, but not functionally. Every aspect had a decimal orb-reference. If I were to meet with the computer personally, I know the distance measured from my nostril to my ear lobe would be accurate. But what would it mean? What is the need for the measurement? — Think of all the measurements possible within the horoscope! Think of how many techniques and refined measurements you have learned to do but have discarded with experience and skill! We learn, perhaps not soon enough, how eloquently a few measurements can speak.
The meeting between astrologer and client -between any two people — is a dynamic moment of awareness. Few measurements need be taken. If the person is introduced as a priest, we immediately have a cultural expectation of his mode of behavior; by definition of his job, we assume his needs in life. After meeting, perception comes alive: we might notice that the priest bites his nails. The individuality is speaking individualistically through the social label. Perhaps his personal needs are in tension with his ambition, his position taken in society for reward or recognition. Perhaps we see that the priest arrived driving a red Jaguar. Further deductions about individuality are possible, but only a few social “measurements” were made.
Astrologically, looking at a horoscope is a meeting with an individual. If all the planets are above the horizon, a very telling configuration, we see an individual who is “top heavy”, perhaps going into life leading with his chin! If all the planets are below the horizon, the “heavy bottom” could suggest a reticence. Planets to the East or West: a tilt of personality significantly toward Ego or Others. The geometry of the whole tips us off to the composition of the parts. We react graphically to the identity as an individual in our presence. With the quickest of overall measurements, we absorb much of the whole.
Analysis of the Sun and Moon together tells us the energy and reigning needs of the life; the Ascendant suggests the dimension modifying social exposure; analysis of mind, aesthetic, applied energy, reward, and ambition needs tells us living dynamics within life behavior. — These measurements are enough because they are measurements of function, the meeting of needs with environment in the development of time.
But when measurements remain descriptions — when needs are not recognized, when the tensions behind potential change are not seen — we tend to search for more and more measurements to solve our dilemma, to help us to translate our deductions into behavior. It is at this point that each of us must change from computer to analyst. We must do what no machine yet can: we must program our store of knowledge with an awareness of life in living terms, using all the disciplines around us, exploiting psychological need theory, philosophy, religion, aesthetics, business, medicine, and law to do the individual justice, to share a life in living terms.
The astrologer inherits the wisdom of the past but must adopt the knowledge of the present. He expands his present legacy as far as knowledge will allow into a future of service, integrity, and revelation.
Some astrologers fall easily indeed into artistic synthesis, translating deductions into dynamic behavior. Some astrologers remain too easily within the trap of static descriptions. The focus is upon the astrologer and his or her wholeness even more than it is upon the horoscope at hand. How full the astrologer must be! How open to expansion and growth! Being able to shift approach, levels of empathy, scope of interpretation, style of delivery, utilizing all possible to bring synthesis to life is the reigning need of all of us in this field. — These thoughts are focused in one mighty sentence by Dane Rudhyar written long ago as a light to us all: “No astrologer — and as well no psychoanalyst — can interpret a life and destiny at a level higher than that at which he himself functions.”
These words motivate the sensitive astrologer. They delineate the need of us all: to know more about life … to achieve a fullness of function in the fullness of time.
(The translation of XX century psychoanalytic theories into astrological deduction is fully studied in Mr. Tyl’s volume Astrology and Personality, volume 5, The Principles and Practice of Astrology.)
THE PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICE OF ASTROLOGY (12 VOLUMES) for home study and college curriculum. By Noel Ty1.
Volume 1: HOROSOOPE CONSTRUCTION …………$3 . 95
V.2: THE HOUSES: THEIR SIGNS AND PLANETS……..$3.95
V.3: THE PLANETS:THEIR SIGNS AND ASPECTS……..$3.95
V.4: ASPECTS AND HOUSES IN ANALYSIS………….$3.95
V.5: ASTROLOGY AND PERSONALITY……………..$3.95
V.6: THE EXPANDED PRESENT…(progressions)….$3.95
V.7 :INTEGRATED TRANSITS……………………$3.95
V.8: ANALYSIS AND PREDICTION………………..$3.95
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V.11: ASTROLOGY: ASTRAL, MUNDANE, OCCULT*……..$3.95
V.12: TIMES TO COME*………………………$3.95
THE HOROSCOPE AS IDENTITY by Noel Tyl …….$10. 00
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