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AP - Thoughts on redefining 'modern astrology'

 
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Deb
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Joined: 11 Oct 2003
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Location: England

Posted: Tue Oct 21, 2003 12:49 pm    Post subject: AP - Thoughts on redefining 'modern astrology' Reply with quote

10 Jul 2003

Richard:

This is a fine site but may I make a suggestion?

I should like to see all references to “modern Astrology” replaced by the phrase “popular astrology”. That should make it clear that simplified techniques gain wide acceptance because a large number of people can use them, even without committed study.

We should be vigilant against allowing traditional astrology – which is after all the mainstream product – to become defined as a specialist topic.

What do you think?

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Deb:

I’m still trying to decide what I think about this. I have mixed feelings, I understand the point you are making but I can’t quite wholeheartedly agree. There’s nothing I hate more than seeing people with a smidgen of astrological knowledge assuming that’s all there is to know, but I also think that there are some astrologers using modern techniques because they’ve made an informed decision and the way that they use astrology suits their style of practice.
But most of the people I am thinking of have studied astrology deeply; they are aware of traditional techniques and fall back on them appropriately.

Hmmm, my full thoughts on this would occupy several pages but I don’t think its quite fair to link all aspects of modern astrology under a ‘popular (ie., uncritical)’ tag, and I think you’ve missed out the view that some people trading in ‘traditional techniques’ are just as guilty of not understanding astrology properly. How many sites do you see on the web offering automated horary services - for a fee?

That said, my pet hate at the moment is seeing ‘predictive astrologers’ making fools of us all in the media by vainly using astrology to make predictions for the camera. One day last week I watched the BB astrologer explaining why only 2 of his predictions had been correct whereas an OAP off the street managed to get all 5 predictions correct using nothing more than ‘common sense’. Then I turned straight to my daily paper to read the astrologer admit that his prediction about someone’s success at Wimbledon was wrong (he was surprisingly defeated at an early stage) but it wasn’t really wrong because some transits have a delayed effect. The worst thing is, this sort of stuff is done by ‘experts’ – people who have studied the subject and ought to know better.

So anyway, I think that there is 'traditional astrology', 'modern astrology', 'popular astrology' and 'crap' and the most important thing is for people to realise that these distinctions exist.

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Tom:

I kind of like Richard's idea. I don't know that "popular" is all that perjorative, but I have a feeling modern astrologers would object. It is more flattering than one astrologer's name for it: "Muffy Starbright" astrology.

"Modern" has the connotation of "up-to-date" that assumes anything else is "out-of-date." This is contemporary thinking in a nutshell, and it is not limited to astrology.

Perhaps the neutral word "contemporary" is a plausible alternative. It changes with the times, as they all love to think is the best way to be, it is accurate, it lumps all the psychological, esoteric, and whatever other "schools" of astrology neatly together, and is more neutral than "popular."

Interesting question, Richard.

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Sue:

I'm still not sure what you mean by 'popular' astrology. Is it anything not traditional, including such astrologers as Dennis Elwell or Liz Greene, or are you specifically talking about the stuff of newspapers such as Mystic Medusa etc.? I don't necessarily equate modern with popular particularly if it is used in a disparaging way. While my interests are predominantly with traditional astrology, I feel that much of modern astrology has a lot to offer. I learn a lot from people such as Elwell and Greene even if I don't always agree with them.

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Deb:

Quote:
"I kind of like Richard's idea. I don't know that "popular" is all that perjorative, but I have a feeling modern astrologers would object. It is more flattering than one astrologer's name for it: "Muffy Starbright" astrology."


I love that! Would definitely not mind changing all the references if I thought I could get away with it.

The thing is, I consider myself to be a modern astrologer, living in a real, up-to-date world and serving modern people with modern issues using traditional astrological techniques. This is probably one of the reasons I find this hard: I’ve no interest in building bridges or barriers between ‘modern’ and ‘traditional’ astrology, especially at a time when the traditional roots of astrology seem to be getting more respect and attention quite naturally. I think it’s best if astrologers stop making issues about differences in technique and just let the astrology speak for itself.

There’s always going to be a ‘popular’ end of any study, where you’ll find an awful lot of people knowing just enough to sound informed. But if it’s in someone to be a good astrologer then they’ll want to probe the subject, understand where its come from, what it really means, and why. If they don’t have that kind of feeling and passion for astrology, I’m not really interested in their views anyway.

We all started off with ‘modern’ techniques didn’t we? But still ended up exploring traditional techniques as a way to deepen our knowledge. (Don’t you think its strange – lots of people turn from modern techniques to traditional techniques, but I’ve never heard of anyone turning from traditional techniques to modern techniques). Even so, I don’t think we need to be vigilant about safeguarding the role of traditional astrology because it’s just ‘there’ when you are ready for it.

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Ekati:

Why don't you try "pseudo-astrology" *smirk*

Suits them fine... Laughing

There is an ancient joke about this doctor who knows nothing of medicine. One day he is called to see a patient who is not very ill and his friends keep reassuring him that he will recover. The doctor after examining the patient tells him "my friend, I will be honest with you. you are very sick and are going to die". Then the doctor asks for his fee and leaves. The patient after some time recovers from his illness and one day he meets this lousy doctor on the street.

The doctor without losing his temper, greets the former patient and asks him how are things in Hades. The former patient replies "oh fine fine, but when I went down there I noticed that the judges were upset with you, because you kept the sick people from dying. and because of this they considered punishing you. but I defended you and said to them that it would be unfair, since you are not really a doctor...."

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Graelhaven:

hmmmmmm, I'm not certain to whom you are refering when you use a general term such as popular astrology. Rob Hands Planets in Transit is the singularly most read and well known work amongst the astrologers I know, and I'd call him popular...though I'm not certain how modern I'd call him? he strikes me as a kind of da Vinci lost in time... (probably one of the reasons why I like him so much)

While I understand the distinction you are trying to make, I'd rather like to point out that its a fairly irrelavant point. people discussing horary or electional astrology are apt to already know the diference and not be in that discussion mode. (though I suppose you might find the occaisional renegade who pops in to rant)

AS to some of the entertainers and their predictions...I'd rather hope one would note the disclaimer on their so called predictions that state the 'predictions are for entertainment purposes only'. I like to refer to the newspaper predictions as HorribleScopes as they are generally a frighteningly bad bit of generality.

anyway, my 2 bits for the morning... hope your day goes well.
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Posted: Wed Oct 22, 2003 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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