Wednesday, July 23, 2014

American Holidays and their Astrological Parallels

Another copy-typing marathon from my volume of The Best of the Illustrated National Astrological Journal, 1933-1935, edited by E.A. Wagner (1978).

I found this article interesting, but perhaps to people born in the USA, and who are astrology buffs, it will be "old news". It is old anyway, from the 1933 section of the volume. I discovered, by the end of the piece, that the inspiration for writing it arose from the establishment of a "President's Day" on 30 April 1933 - something which didn't survive - for clues as to why, please read on!

The American Holidays - Their Parallels to the Forty-eight Constellations of the Ancients
by Elbert Benjamine (- aka C.C. Zain)

The Ancients pictured for us, by means of forty-eight constellations, the parallels which exist between things on the earth and the influences in the sky. Each ancient constellation pictures either one of the twelve signs of the zodiac, or one of the decanates into which each sign is divided. These stellar pictures reveal not merely the physical, but also the spiritual, significance of the particular section of the heavens occupied by a planet.

To illustrate this principle, all too frequently neglected by astrological practitioners, I shall here apply it to the persistence of the strictly American holidays.

Astrologers are wont to say that if a child is born when the vibrations in the heavens, as shown by the birth-chart are different from the vibrations of the child's character, the child will not live. The same holds true of any church festival, or even of a national holiday. Unless the holiday is born, and observed, when its character is the same as the chief influence in the sky, that holiday will die; that is, be discontinued.

The chief influence in the sky, insofar as holidays and kindred things are concerned, is indicated by the sign and decanate in which the Sun is found. The significance of the particular place where the Sun is thus found is revealed by the constellation which pictures the sign, and the constellation which pictures the decanate, or ten degrees subdivision of the sign. If, for instance, any astrologer were to be asked which zodiacal sign rules the home and the homeland, he would answer the sign Cancer.
Now our Fourth of July is observed to commemorate the establishment of a homeland. And on that date the Sun is in the sign Cancer.
We do not celebrate the Fourth by prayer and thanksgiving; but by firing cannon,  exploding fire-crackers, and other pyrotechnics, both physical and vocal, calling for expostulations from the press to try to make it more safe and sane. These are all Mars expressions. And on this day the Sun has passed into the Mars decanate of Cancer.
Both the Crab which pictures Cancer, and Hydra, picturing the decanate, warrant further consideration. But, because such treatment would require a whole article, let us move forward to Labor Day.

Our Labor Day has not the same purpose, nor is it celebrated the same as May Day in Europe. It is a day commemorating the efforts of the common people. The common people are ruled by the Moon. Monday is the day of the Moon. Consequently Labor Day is observed on Monday. The first Monday in September.

Astrological usage allots the sixth house and its zodiacal correspondence, the sign Virgo, to labor, and the Sun at this time has moved into the sign Virgo.

It is the second decanate of Virgo, pictured in the sky by the constellation Hercules. Now Hercules is not renowned for reciting verse or attending Sunday school, he is famed for his great labors. The observation of a day when the Sun is in the section of the zodiac pictured by this great hero is a tribute to the tremendous importance of the work of the common people in the world's affairs.

Thanksgiving comes next in the national calendar. It is a day of prayer and feasting. the religious sign of the zodiac is Sagittarius, and its ruler, Jupiter is the religious planet. The festival is held on Thursday, the day of Jupiter, when the Sun is in the devotional sign Sagittarius.

To each sign and decanate astrologers have given a key-word denoting the most significant influence. The key-word of the first decanate of Sagittarius, where the Sun is found on this day, is Devotion. It is pictured by the constellation Lyra, the Harp, signifying praise being offered to God in music and song. It pictures the thanksgiving decanate of the zodiac.

Sagittarius is pictured as a huntsman. The turkey is American in origin, and the early settlers obtained it by hunting. Even today, in many sections, the occasion is observed by a Thanksgiving Day hunt.

Jupiter is the planet of abundance. He likes a bounteous spread, and this is the day when the table groans under the weight of sweets and viands, and is traditionally adorned by the largest American game bird. The turkey obtained in the market is slightly removed from those that still run wild.

On the twelfth of February we celebrate Lincoln's birthday. He was the great humanitarian, and the Sun is in the humanitarian sign Aquarius, pictured as a man pouring blessings from an urn upon the earth.

The Sun is in the last decanate of Aquarius, pictured by Cetus, the Whale Monster. This monster devoured the fairest youths of Greece, and fair Andromeda was chained to a rock for this vile creature to destroy. But she was rescued by Perseus. The key-word of this decanate is Repression.
Lincoln is revered not for military exploits and not for cunning. He is honored for destroying the monster of slavery. Even as Perseus slew the hideous creature and released Andromeda, so Lincoln slew the greedy institution of human slavery. He loosened the shackles and abolished one terrible type of Repression.

Washington was the founder of a nation, and its first ruler. That he had the wisdom and unselfishness to establish it as he did makes him a great character.

His birthday is observed the twenty-second of February, at the time when the Sun has entered the first decanate of the sign Pisces. Pisces is a sign of restriction, and it was these restrictions that Washington removed.

The decanate is pictured by Cepheus, the King; and Washington became the ruler of an independent country. The key-word of the decanate is Verity. It expresses the time worn thought that The Truth Shall Set you Free. The type of rulership established by Washington set a precedent, and most of the western world followed it by adopting the republican form of government.

Thus have we passed over the five main American holidays. But, perhaps, this year we have established a sixth.

April thirtieth, 1933, was observed as President's Day.

On that day the Sun passed into the second decanate of the sign Taurus. Taurus, as every astrologer knows, is associated with money. And this day was set apart to do homage to the man who is making so valiant a struggle to free his people from the afflictions of a money-mad world.

The second decanate of Taurus, where the Sun is on this day, is represented by the constellation Orion. A mighty bull is pictured in the sky, pitching down upon Orion to pin him with his horns to the earth, even as the money powers have pinioned the people in poverty for the last few years. Orion wields a great club and does battle with the Bull.

The key-word of the decanate is Struggle. And the day commemorated the struggle of our president against the powers of money greed. He uses the "big stick" quite as effectively as does Orion.

To most, the Hebrew version of this combat is more familiar than the Greek, for the Greek Orion is none other than the Hebrew Moses.

Moses came down from Mount Sinai and found his people worshiping a golden calf, representing this same greed for wealth. Even as our president has set aside many out-moded laws, so Moses was wroth and broke the tablets of the law which he had with him.

Moses did not permit this greed for gold to destroy his people. He smote the golden calf, broke it in pieces, burned it in the fire of political purification, and strewed it on the life-giving waters of a wide and sympathetic distribution.

Nor did he fail to use this bull, or calf, or wealth for some good purpose. For he made the Children of Israel all drink of its purified ashes. He distributed the wealth among all the people, nor left it in the hands of a paltry few.

And if our president, following the example of Moses, as pictured in the sky, leads his people out of the wilderness of this depression; if he smites the sacrilegious idol of Mammon, and causes wealth to be widely distributed and freely circulated, we shall have another national hero.

If he successfully follows the footsteps of the constellation in the sky which depicts this present struggle, we may be sure of a new and permanent holiday.

Hat-tip HERE

From Wikipedia
When Franklin D. Roosevelt was inaugurated March 4, 1933, the U.S. was at the nadir of the worst depression in its history. A quarter of the workforce was unemployed. Farmers were in deep trouble as prices fell by 60%. Industrial production had fallen by more than half since 1929. Two million were homeless. By the evening of March 4, 32 of the 48 states – as well as the District of Columbia – had closed their banks. The New York Federal Reserve Bank was unable to open on the 5th, as huge sums had been withdrawn by panicky customers in previous days. Beginning with his inauguration address, Roosevelt began blaming the economic crisis on bankers and financiers, the quest for profit, and the self-interest basis of capitalism....

 Wall Street's Bull sculpture


mike said...

Well, from what I can determine, President's Day of April 30, 1933, didn't survive, because it never existed! Could be wrong, but I can find no evidence to support that claim. There is the notation on the post card: "...MINNESOTA...Alone of all the 48 states honors the New President by naming three towns...".

So, I believe that Minnesota, ALONE, had a special commemoration April 30, 1933. Maybe the author of your book, E.A. Wagner, lived in Franklin, Delano, or Roosevelt, Minnesota, and thought that the local event went national or something...?

mike (again) said...

P.S. - I didn't realize that the designation "Presidents' Day" was a state's determinate:

Washington's Birthday is a United States federal holiday celebrated on the third Monday of February in honor of George Washington, the first President of the United States.

It is also a state holiday in most states where it is known by a variety of names including Presidents Day and Washington's and Lincoln's Birthday and officially celebrates, depending upon the state, Washington alone, Washington and Lincoln, or some other combination of U.S. presidents. Some states celebrate Washington and the third president Thomas Jefferson but not Lincoln."

Twilight said...

mike ~ There isn't an author of the book I have, only an editor of the compilation - of articles from magazines - during their 1933-1935 period.

The article I've copied was actually written in 1933, so something must have been goin' on then.

How about this:

April 30, 1933 ---
U.S. Withdrawal from the Gold Standard...The Roosevelt administration took the U.S. dollar off the gold standard to give the government greater control over monetary policy to spur the American economy.

Maybe certain factions got excited and named the day impulsively....then the nation thought better of it and ditched the idea.

Anyway, it's a curiosity worth recording I thought.