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Articles on Astrology
 

Using the Sabian Symbols in Chart Angle Delineation

In astrology, the cusps of the four angles created by the horizon and meridian axes are referred to as the angles of the chart. These four important points on the chart wheel are commonly known as the Ascendant, the Midheaven or Medium Coeli (M.C.), the Descendant, and the Imum Coeli (I.C.).

The following article attemps to summerise Dane Rudhyar's delineation of the four angles as they are related to the Sabian Symbols. 

Ascendant: "WHAT is the essence-meaning or theme?"
Descendant: "WHERE will this theme lead to?"
Nadir: "HOW can one best act in order to succeed?"
Midheaven: "WHY this process?  What is the purpose of all this?

Specifically, for a Natal chart:

 Ascendant asks:  "Who am I?"
 Descendant asks: "Where am I going?"
 Nadir asks:      "How do I best get there?"
 Midheaven asks:  "Why am I living this lifetime?"

Discovering and meditating upon the correct Sabian Symbol for your Ascendant is a tremendously powerful experience for most people, as it clearly defines the consciousness-essence of the Self in the present lifetime.  An exact birth-time and place will always produce an Ascendant degree whose Sabian Symbol explicitly answers the question ‘who am I?’  If your consciousness is oriented along a path of self- knowledge then you will relate to the correct symbol immediately, as the connection clicks into place you may even experience a seeming relief at being reminded of something forgotten in the confusion of incarnate existence.  There is a definite sense of, that’s right!  I'd almost forgotten, that’s who I am!"

The Neighbouring Symbols

The Sabian Symbols are a dynamic symbol system that represents a seamless and never-ending evolutionary process. At certain points in their lives, some people feel a peculiar longing for identification with the next symbol in sequence after the one indicated by the chart, especially if the chart-indicated symbol describes a difficult or unpleasant process.  There can also be a desire to identify with the previous symbol, as it represents a process with which you are already familiar and comfortable.  The correct symbol for your current lifetime may or may not be the one that your ego would like to embody, however it is always, the one that you are in fact working on at a transpersonal level.
For this reason, try to temper your instinctive sense of identification, which may reflect a greater or lesser degree of ego projection, with a little objective analysis on your own part.

Cuspal Degrees

A cuspal symbol is an angle that, when accurately calculated, falls almost exactly on a degree cusp.  Many astrologers believe that cusps of any kind, whether sign or house or degree, are dynamic points that serve as transition gateways.  Allegorically: As you are passing through a door from one room to another, how can you say precisely when you are on one side of the door, and when you are on the other side?  Even when you appear to have just fully emerged into the new room, can you say that you now have no awareness of, or identification with, the room you just left?  Or can you say that you already know enough about the room you have just entered to be fully identified with its unique characteristics, vibrations, potentialities?

Composite relationship charts

Not surprisingly, the Sabian Symbols seem to work equally well for composite charts, revealing much about the interpersonal dynamics present in the relationship.  Composite charts are used to help a couple see what they are working on together and what the essence or purpose of their union is.  Further research definitely needs to be done here, so here are some suggested questions for the four angles when applied to a composite chart:

 Ascendant asks:  "Who are we together?"
 Descendant asks: "Where are we going?"
 Nadir asks:      "How do we best get there?"
 Midheaven asks:  "Why are we having this relationship?"

Suffice it to say, however, that using the Sabian Symbols may well prove to be a useful new tool in validating one or another method of computing composite chart angularity.

Event charts.

Event charts can be every bit as valid and enlightening as individual natal charts, for exactly the same reasons: they represent the beginning of a something, an entity, a gestalt of some significance. Event charts are often calculated for turning- point or traumatic life experiences, for the birth-points of new endeavours such as businesses, and so on.

Ascendant:  "What is the essence of this event?"
Descendant: "To what will this event lead?"
Nadir: "What kind of continuing activity will further progress in this direction?"
Midheaven:  "For what purpose is all this happening?"



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