Saturday, October 22, 2016

Keys to Unlock Astrology

Keywords used in interpretation of zodiac signs and astrological houses are a handy tool, especially helpful to beginners who wish to learn more about the ancient art. There are several websites online offering lists of keywords - for example HERE, under "Introduction to Astrology."
Among astrology-related books lining my shelves is "Astrological Keywords" by Manly P. Hall. The author is described here as:
"One of the metaphysical giants of the Twentieth Century, Manly P. Hall spent decades researching eastern philosophy, occult studies, astrology, and a wide variety of related topics at a time when such subjects were still unknown territory in the western world. It is in no small measure due to his extensive writings and teachings that these subjects are so widely known today.

A prime example of the visionary Balsamic Moon type, Hall had Sun in Pisces, Moon in Aquarius. He earned an honorary Ph.D. in literature, was a 33rd Degree Mason, was a Rosicrucian initiate, and wrote over 200 books."
Another post on Manly P. Hall, among the archives, can be read HERE.

Astrological Keywords has been re-printed many times from 1958 onward, my copy is the 1978 version. It contains a treasure trove of astrological information. I'm borrowing, here, from the last chapter headed: "Snap Judgment".

Mr. Hall tells us that
"While a detailed analysis of character depends upon a profound knowledge of the science of astrology, the possession of certain fundamental keywords enables the student to arrive at remarkable conclusions, which, while not complete, will adequately demonstrate the accuracy of astrology."
For me, this pencil sketch style can often be far more convincing than pages and pages of scholarly interpretation.

Mr. Hall provides 8 examples to illustrate his point. I'll borrow his snap judgments about three of the best known personalities he features.
"Abraham Lincoln -
Aries rising - courageous, ambitious, idealistic. Sun in Aquarius - humanitarian, religious, progressive, tolerant. Neptune, Saturn and Antares (fixed star) conjoined in 8th house: a tragic and violent death. Mars and Uranus in 7th house: unhappy marriage. Capricorn in mid-heaven: high honor and great sense of public duty and responsibility. Venus opposing ascendant in Aries - features irregular but conveying an impression of beauty, sweetness or kindliness. A glance reveals these elements in the horoscope of America's martyred president, Abraham Lincoln.

Sir Francis Bacon
Aquarius rising with Sun opposite ascendant "spiritual and scientific progressivisim and diplomacy. Sun in 12th house: disgrace or imprisonment. Mercury conjunct Sun in 12th: the brilliance of his mind left unrewarded and obscured by the enmity of his contemporaries. Sagittarius on mid-heaven: high philosophical and religious attainments. Uranus in 10th house: erratic fortune and public place. Mars in Scorpio in 9th house: religious and political intrigue. This is an astrological sketch of the personality of Sir Francis Bacon, Chancellor of the British Empire and father of modern science.

Thomas Edison
Scorpio rising, a scientist. Leo on 10th house, a leader. Sun in Aquarius, a mind turned to Aquarian concerns - an inventor. Mercury in Aquarius, electricity. Neptune in Aquarius an inventor and investigator. Thus we may sum up the outstanding characteristics of Thomas Edison." (Inventor of the light bulb, among other things).
I didn't realise, until I'd finished typing these, that the subjects are all Sun Aquarians. I looked quickly through the other 5 examples in the chapter and oddly there's another Sun Aquarian, an Aquarius rising, a Pisces rising, a Sun Pisces, and a Leo Sun with Uranus in Aquarius. The author, Manly P. Hall, had Sun in Pisces, Moon in Aquarius (as stated in his memorial above). I wonder whether there was a little astrological nepotism going on here? Or are Aquarius and Pisces, for some reason, best able to demonstrate the efficacy of snap judgments? Curious.

[This is a lightly edited post from my earliest astrology blogging days.]


mike said...

Manly Palmer Hall, master of esotericism, reminds me of Joel Osteen, founder of the Lakewood Church, Houston, TX, the largest Protestant church in the USA. Both made tons-o-cash by eloquently regurgitating for their generous patrons. I'm not opining that they are (were) charlatans, but there is enough controversy surrounding these two to provide doubt, at least in my mind. If they can deliver messages that provide a spiritual foundation for others, then good enough.

Hall's personal life and manner of death [ ] were surrounded in controversy. He supposedly wiped clean all traces of his personal life, leaving minimal behind for biographers.
"Nor did his vast knowledge help his personal relationships. Hall was married twice, the first ending with his wife's suicide; the second, almost 20 years later, was to a woman who was emotionally abusive and was classified by the FBI as a certifiable nuisance. Both marriages were childless. Sahagun doesn't believe Hall's second marriage was ever consummated, and there were rumors that he might have been gay. Whatever the case, this was a man who lived primarily in the world of books and ideas, and also one, it's important to note, who had always warned of the dangers of putting spiritual leaders on a pedestal. 'All followers who offer to adorn and deify their teachers set up a false condition,' Hall wrote in a 1942 essay. 'Human beings, experience has proved, make better humans than they do gods.'"

I read several books that he collaborated for the Rosicrucian Fellowship. They were wonderful to read and provided mental-spiritual exercises (esoteric "secrets" of lost knowledge) toward attaining our true purpose as spiritual beings. I don't believe the exercises were any more helpful than the average person might acquire from meditation or yoga, if even that. For all the millions that have read and digested his arcana, we should have many advanced, spiritual beings wandering the Earth.

With that said, I do believe one can make astrological, snap judgements. I certainly do and quite often...I love being judgemental...LOL. I only have Jupiter in Aquarius and N Node in Pisces, so I'm not qualified to proffer whether those two signs are better at it than others.

Twilight said...

mike ~ I'm no fan on M.P. Hall in general, and I doubt he was the originator of the keyword system in astrology, but his little book, subject of this post, came as one of a job-lot of pre-owned astrology books I bought at E-bay way back before I began this blog. Most of that collection have now been given away (via the blog), "Astrology Keywords" was retained along with a handful of others. a) It doesn't take up much shelf-space, and b)it's a handy go-to if off-line. :-)

Regarding the uneasy feelings about writers and "spiritual" types such as Hall, synchronistically, before I read your comment I'd been reading a current piece and long thread of comments at The Archdruid Report:
(I was led there from my fave "naked capitalism" site).
I was beginning to get that same uneasy feeling you describe about Hall and Osteen - not from The Archdruid's own blog post exactly, which is thought-provoking, but from the adoring commentary.
The Archdruid's other, non-political blog is

I'm perhaps being unfair to AD, and maybe we both are to M.P. Hall and his ilk, but I've always had uneasy feelings about "spiritual" would-be leaders and "spiritual" pontificators of any stripe.

Anyway,...back to keywords...I'm in favour of these, at least. :-)

mike (again) said...

Should money come along concurrent to being a spiritual guru, what's to not like?!

Manly P. Hall's estate was worth between $10 million and $50 million, depending on source.

Joel Osteen:
"He lives in a $10.5 million home, which boasts six bedrooms, six bathrooms, three elevators, five fireplaces, a guest house, and pool house, and he also owns his former home, valued at $2.9 million, according to CultureMap Houston. Some critics of Osteen take issue with this fact. His estimated net worth is over $40 million. 'Joel Osteen, whose book sales and related stuff generates a reported $55 million, claims an individual should not feel guilt for possessing lots of material wealth. Instead, one needs to thank and praise God for the acquired wealth,' Celebrity Net Worth reported."

Someone I'd forgotten until your post is Jack Parsons, another strange occultist and contemporary to Hall:
Parsons had direct contact with another (in-)famous person, L Ron Hubbard. Birds of a feather...

mike (again) said...

Returning to your keywords and recognizing such in others, maybe being one, recognizes one. The two signs in my chart having the most planets are Scorpio (Sun, Mercury, Venus) and Virgo (Moon, S Node, Saturn). I can usually sense those two signs in others with personal planets in those two signs. Also, Taurus...the polar magnetism I suppose.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Ah yes, there's that ($) of course! Helena Blavatsky also has been on my no-no list since first reading of her and her gang. I love some art styles of that late 1800s period moving into early 20th century (Art Nouveau and Art Deco) but the rest of the scene, not so much.

Twilight said...

mike (again) ~ Oh yes, recognition, "it takes one to know one" kind of thing in astrology - aka in my book as astrodar - does seem to work. It probably works better for you with multiple planets in one sign, than for me with a more scattered chart. But I still do encounter astrodar sometimes, mostly involving Aquarius or Aries (natal Sun and Moon), not necessarily in person, even from actors and others on TV/film - which I do find a bit creepy, actually. :-)