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Astrological Encyclopedia
Studies in Astrology

"To the Rosicrucian student astrology is a phase of religion, basically a spiritual science. More than any other study it reveals man to himself. No other science is so sublime, so profound, and so all-embracing. It portrays the relation between God, the macrocosm, and man, the microcosm, showing them to be fundamentally one. Esoteric science, investigating the subtler forces that impinge upon man, the Spirit, and his vehicles, has charted their effects with no less definiteness than has academic science the reactions of sea and soil, plant and animal to the solar and lunar rays."

   The six prior volumes of this series of astrological interpretations have been received with such an enthusiastic welcome by so many astrology students everywhere that we are pleased to add No. 7 to the series. Elman Bacher's profound knowledge of and devotion to the spiritual aspect of the stellar science, along with an uncanny understanding of human nature, made it possible for him to present illuminating astrological treatises which undoubtedly place him among the best of modern esoteric astrologers. As the truth and value of his spiritual interpretation of astrology become more and more generally accepted, his presentations will serve increasingly to help people know themselves and fulfill their highest destiny. Before passing into the higher realms in the early 1950's, Mr. Bacher expressed a keen desire to have us publish his articles in book form, and although we deeply regret that he did not live to see his articles made available to the public in this convenient form, we are happy in knowing that his wish is being fulfilled.


   To the Rosicrucian student astrology is a phase of religion, basically a spiritual science. More than any other study it reveals man to himself. No other science is so sublime, so profound, and so all- embracing. It portrays the relation between God, the macrocosm, and man, the microcosm, showing them to be fundamentally one. Esoteric science, investigating the subtler forces that impinge upon man, the Spirit, and his vehicles, has charted their effects with no less definiteness than has academic science the reactions of sea and soil, plant and animal to the solar and lunar rays. With this knowledge we may determine the astrological pattern of each individual and know the relative strength and weakness of the various forces operating in each life. To the degree that we are in possession of such knowledge we can begin systematic, scientific character building-and character is destiny! We note times and seasons cosmically advantageous to unfolding undeveloped qualities, correcting faulty traits, and eliminating destructive propensities. The divine science of astrology reveals the hidden causes at work in our lives. It counsels the adult in regard to vocation, the parent in the guidance of children, the teacher in management of pupils, the physician in diagnosing diseases, thus lending aid to each and all in whatever position they may find themselves. No other subject within the range of human knowledge appears to hold for this day and age the possibilities open to astrologers for helping people to their own dignity as gods-in-the-making, to a greater grasp of universal law, and to a realization that we are eternally secure within the caressing fold of Infinite Life and Boundless Being.

Dramatic Art

   The instinct to act is as primordial to human nature as is any other instinct. Consider the natural tendency of all people to emphasize or intensify communication-by-speech with gestures and facial expressions. This natural emphasis is that which is cultivated by intensive training in dramatic art, just as the natural beauty of the speaking voice is cultivated in the art of singing. To dramatize, means to intensify — in whatever form or through whatever medium. Consequently, dramatization is one of the archetypal attributes of all the arts — the organized expression of a specialized "point" of emotional reaction, thought, or realization. Even the playing of two or three octaves of a scale on the piano (usually not thought of as being particularly beautiful) can be dramatized by use of tonal dynamics in such ways that its mechanistic identity as a "scale" is transformed into a "point" of expressive musicality. Technical skill can, and sometimes does, serve to produce art-work that is universally designated as mediocre. Artistic mediocrity is, essentially, art produced un-inspirationally. Inspiration in whatever form — and there are many ways by which it can be experienced — is the most highly dramatized form of human experience in no other way do we experience reaction and realization with greater intensity. As Mars and Moon are "lower-octave" impregnation and receptivity, so Sun and Neptune are "upper-octave" impregnation and receptivity. The chalice of Neptune receives the down-pouring of solar power into the "soul-seed" (the little circle at the bottom of the Neptune-symbol), the symbol of spiritual or psychic impregnation which, in any form, is inspiration; and inspiration is always a designation of response to solar love-power — the sign Leo, of the Great Mandala. The Pisces of Neptune is the upper-octave of the water-trine, initiated by the cardinal Cancer, which is the triune principle of sympathetic vibrational responsiveness. Sun and Neptune are (in composite) the planetary identity of Father-Mother God-hood of humanity.

   Dramatic art had its inception in ceremony; ceremony, in turn, was man's way of personalizing, by action-symbols, his spiritual realizations. Ceremony and myth are two ways of saying the same thing: exotericising, by action and story, that which represents humanity's concepts of life-principles Man's truth is "Life's truth seen in a mirror;" the mirror is the evolutionary status of the emotional consciousness of the evolving being. The art of acting is the most completely personalized of all the forms of interpretative art-using as instruments the voice of the singer and the body of the dancer. The dancer moves in specialized rhythms, the singer "speaks" in specialized tones, the actor (by movement and speech) has something of both. The great actor fuses two highly specialized talents; that of panto-mime, which is "literalized dancing," and that of line-reading, which is " literalized singing." Great acting formalizes certain esthetic principles just as great prose-writing does; the movements of the dancer and the vocal expression of the singer correspond to acting as poetry does to great prose- writing.

   Keeping in mind that "to dramatize," means "to intensify," let us now consider the significance of the diameter Leo-Aquarius, fifth house signs of Aries-Libra, as the archetypal symbol of the principle of dramatic expression. This diameter is the polarization of that which is essentially symbolized by the fifth house or the Great Mandala — the individualized radiation of emotional powers. Leo, fixed fire, is the initiating sign of the fixed cross, analogous to Aries and Sagittarius of the cardinal and mutable Crosses, respectively. It is the love aspect of the archetypal I AM and because of sequence-position, it is the releasement of that which is established in the fourth house. Its keyword is I release and it is pabulum for not only the other three signs of the fixed cross but for the active expression of the Sun in the horoscope.

   Generation is Scorpio-eighth-house as individualized releasement is Leo-fifth-house, polarized spiritually and by genius through Aquarius-eleventh-house. We must keep in mind that power, as the Sun Principle, serves no purpose unless, and until, it is released and radiated. All the love in the human heart, all the creative endowment, all the inspired manifestive or interpretative genius are relatively meaningless if they are not expressed, and it is through Leo-Aquarius and Sun-Uranus that we express creatively, as far as humans can be creative. It is through the love attribute of Leo that we contribute emotional vitalization to relationships and to our work. Through it we find the resource of that which is focused complementation, is Scorpio-generation-and regeneration. Leo is the arch-symbol of natural, spontaneous joyousness, the dynamic attribute of which the passive and transitory realization is called "happiness." Only through joyousness do we truly love, truthfully manifest or interpret, and sincerely serve. Even in "blood, sweat, and tears," joyousness is an inevitable factor in the consciousness of the artist; to be "un-joy-ful" is to be un-loving and un-radiative, in the creative sense of the word. The sorrows of Leo-Sun are rooted in the lack-of opportunity or congestion-of-ability to exercise love-radiation to other people or to work. The agonies of Aquarius-Uranus are rooted in inability to meet the gravitational challenges of Moon-Saturn and in the "birth-pangs" of bi-polar manifestivity. Unindividualized human consciousness is represented by the sequence of the first four zodiacal signs — Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer. The radiativity of this octave of primitive awareness is in the sign Scorpio, fifth house sign of Moon's Cancer — the instinct to generate forms as a releasement of desire resources. With individualization, however, the person moves in evolutionary sequence one step ahead to the Leo-Aquarius diameter and his desire-radiation is transformed into at least a primitive aspect of love-consciousness and individualized power-consciousness. Individualized power-consciousness is the first "must" in the development and fulfillment of manifestive or interpretative artistry. So, the artist of whatever kind must know that he is a power, and personal integration must be effected before that power-consciousness can be expressed. Now, to the playwright and the actor:

   The playwright is a specialization of (either one or both) prose-writer and poetry-writer. However, by the specializations of his art, he is more essentially the writer of poetry than prose, even if he doesn't (and most playwrights don't) write specifically in verse. The writing of plays involves not only an instinctive at-tunement to the principle of rhythm but also to the inherent musicality of vocal values. He must, because acting is pantomime and action as well as speech, know something of the movement-values that are inherent in dance. A sense of "time-proportion" is as necessary to his work as is a sense of "space-proportion" to the painter or "tone-proportion " to the composer. Time-consciousness is what we call the consciousness of sequence of reaction and realization. "Human reactions and realizations" are what the playwright presents in esthetically organized "dramatized" form. Actually, the "doing" that is represented on the stage is the objectification of sequences of individualized reactions and realizations. On the stage or in real living, this "doing" is always an outpicturing of inner states. And the protean mentality or understanding of the playwright makes it possible for him to construct the action of his play in accordance with a deep "inner knowing" of individualized time-consciousness. The playwright may or may not seek to present a message in his work; but what he does present, either as "message" or "pure drama," is the organization of his concept of archetypes reflected through individual or composite human consciousness. Read any play worthy of being designated as dramatic art and you will find, somewhere, an "emotional point" that is the archetype of the whole play, however complex in structure it may be. The art of manifestive drama (playwrighting) is the harmonious and expressive organization of elements which are focalized, as the tree is focalized in its seed, on this emotional point.

   The Great Astrological Mandala with Aries Ascendant, cardinal structure-points connected in a square, the water-signs connected in a triangle, is the symbolic picture of that which all art seeks to interpret. Here is the human family — the male and female of "parent and child," male and female in immature and mature states, and the fourfold interchange of physical, generic, and evolutionary polarity. The trine of water-signs is the principle of sympathetic vibration by which manifestors and interpreters "tune in" on archetypes to be expressed through individualized concepts in esthetic media.

   The second presentation of the Great Mandala has the fixed signs at the structure-points, Leo as Ascendant, Scorpio as base. This is the mandala of all manifestive (creative) artists, radiating from their resources of creative power, polarized by the genius of Aquarius, to fulfill a karmic inspirational redemption of the group-subconscious of humanity. The position of Cancer as twelfth house sign of this mandala shows us that the radiative potential of the Leo-Ascendant is derived from a deep resource of sympathy, of which "parenthood" is the archetype. No truly great playwright does his finest and most inspired work basically impelled by a desire to make millions in money or to attain this and that of fame or applause. He does it because he can't refrain from it and live, any more than truly mature people can live (in the real sense of the word) without contributing to life. The playwright or other manifestive artist, is a spiritual parent, an "epigenitor" of his archetype. The Scorpio base of this mandala points to the psychological base of intense regenerative desire-power. No great artist of any kind is a "psychological milk-sop;" there is deep perception, profound understanding, strong sexuality, intense emotions and, consciously or unconsciously, a blazing aspiration, in all of them.

   The third basic presentation of the Great Mandala has Sagittarius on the Ascendant, mutable signs at the structure-points, and Pisces as base. This is the mandate of the interpretative artist who at-tunes himself to the concept of the manifestor and makes of himself a vehicle for the embodiment of that concept). It might be called, as abstract portrait of interpretative artist, the "mandala of individualized instrumentation." The interpretative artist disciplines, develops, and organizes his abilities and faculties in order that he may qualify for inspirational exercise. There have been a number of artists in the fields of drama, dance, and music who have qualified for designation as both manifestor and interpreter. Of the interpretative artists there are two basic types:

   One type is that of the archetypal personality of which there are — and have been — several noteworthy examples in the field of motion-picture acting. Representatives of this type, in silent and sound movies, are such as: Rudolph Valentino, Theda Bara, Mary Pickford (as "America's Sweetheart" of years ago), Douglas Fairbanks, senior, Mae West, Clark Gable, and others. The outstanding example of the archetypal personality in today 's movies is "Bing" Crosby — the "world's troubadour." (1951).

   The second type is that of the true dramatic interpreter, the actor or actress whose personality and personal equipment is pabulum for at-tunement to the concept of the manifestor. All great dramatic artists are of this type and they, in their persons and by their influence, are among the most conspicuous "inspirators" of the human race. The Sagittarius Ascendant of the "interpreter-mandala" portrays the esoteric (or psychological) priesthood of all dramatic representation. By the power of the actor, the essence of human personality-vibrations is represented in the roles he plays; these personality-vibration patterns are condensations of life-principles expressing through the human archetype. The inspirational projection of the actor fused with the skill and knowledge of the playwright contributes a vitalization of humanity's awareness of its own experience and identity as a life-expression. Man ever seeks to realize the truths of his archetype and, more than does any other art, drama has the power to "ignite" points of this realization. We do not really see our (individual) selves in the performances of great actors; we see "points of the self" outpictured. Our response to the impact of a great performance of tragic drama has the effect of lifting our consciousness from the "localized pain of our personal sorrows" into a vast participation of the sorrows and suffering of evolving humanity. The actor and actress are intermediaries between our consciousness of separative self and our consciousness of identity with the self-hood of our archetype, humanity. Give a little thought to your responses to performances of great acting. Do you recall the sense of "expansion into a larger self" by stimulus to your sympathy, your courage, your faith, your love, and your inspirations?

   Mention might be made here of one who, in her day, was considered by most to be greatest in the field of dramatic artistry and whose fulfillment of artistic endowment represented one of the greatest developments of theatrical art: Mme. Sarah Bernhardt. The career of this great French actress (she was a native of Paris and also of Scorpio) on the stages of the world covered a span of something like sixty years and, from a standpoint of sheer "quantity of expression," as well as of quality, it was a phenomenon of staggering proportions. She not only interpreted major roles from the classical, melodramatic, and lyric repertoires, but so great was the power of her vibration that she inspired the writing of a great number of the finest plays of her time — by such authors as Francois Coppée, Victor Hugo, Edmond Rostand, and many others. This woman was truly a priestess of dramatic art, consecrated with every fiber of her being to the fulfillment of an endowment that was truly a gesture of the divine to those on this plane. Read a good biography of her life. It will recharge your consciousness with a renewed faith in the power of beauty resident in the human archetype.

   In application to astrological reading, the symbolic essence of dramatic ability is Venus, Jupiter, and Neptune, the signs Pisces and Leo, and the fifth house. "Dramatic career" will involve certain favorable configurations with the Moon (as the symbol of the public) and also of the sixth and tenth houses. (The prodigious achievements of Mme. Bernhardt are shown by Sun in Scorpio in combination with a conjunction of Jupiter and Uranus; it is possible that she had both Moon and Neptune in Pisces — Twelfth House — with Aries Ascendant.

   Does the astrologer act? If so, what is his theater and whose lines does he read? A factor in the ethics of astrological service demands that the consultant astrologer submerge his personal feelings, thereby avoiding an infliction of negative vibrations on his troubled client, and that clarity of at-tunement to the horoscope may be effected. In this respect, he does exactly what the actor has to do. The astrologer, in his person and vibration, must dramatize serenity, friendliness, enlightenment, encouragement, and love. This is not "hypocrisy," though the word "hypocrite" does essentially mean "one who plays a part." The hypocrite misrepresents through a falsity of nature; the astrologer represents through the truths of human nature.

   The astrologer "reads the lines" of human nature as an explanation of life-principles functioning through a particular archetype. His stage is any place where he presents astrological truths for the enlightenment of the consciousness of other people, privately or publicly. The astrologer serves to dramatize the essential good of the person for whom he reads and, in this function, he proves his identity as brother-in-spirit to the dramatic artist.

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Contemporary Mystic Christianity

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