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benefic planets versus malefic planets

 
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sasha_i



Joined: 06 Apr 2005
Posts: 288
Location: Bucuresti

Posted: Wed May 24, 2006 9:47 pm    Post subject: benefic planets versus malefic planets Reply with quote

First of all I would like to make some preliminary remarks:

1.Ancient people regarded planets as gods. Not only Mesopotamians, Egyptians, but also Maya, or Aztec people.
2.These was also the opinion of Plato in Republic or Plotinus (The Six Enneads).

Now that I made this introduction I will bring in discussion the following fragment from Iamblichusís ďTheurgia or The Egyptian MysteriesĒ(Reply of Abammon, the Teacher toThe Letter of Porphyry to Anebo)-Part I THE GODS IN THE SKY NOT MALIGNANT:

"Thy next question raises a difficulty in another form "How is it that some of these gods are givers of good and others bring evil?"

This conjecture is taken from the casters of nativities, but it falls short of actual fact in every particular.

For they all are not only good, but in like manner, also the causes and authors of benefits, and they likewise all revolve (in their orbits) with reference simply to the One God, according to the beautiful and good alone.

Nevertheless the bodies which are subject to them, themselves possess extraordinary powers; some of these powers being firmly established in the divine bodies themselves; but others going forth from them into the productive principle of the world, even into the world itself, and likewise passing down in proper order through the whole realm of generation, and extending without impediant even to incomplete races. ď

In respect, therefore, to the powers which inhere in the bodies of the divine ones in the sky, there is no doubt that they are all similar. Hence it is left for us that we shall discourse upon those which have been sent down here, and which have become intermingled with the sphere of generated existence. They extend in the same way preservation of the universe, and encompass the whole realm of generated existence after the same manner.

They are both impassive and unchangeable, although they are present in the changeable and passive.

The realm of generated existence being of many kinds and constituted of things diverse in character, contends against the oneness and indivisible essence of the gods with its own contrary and factious nature, discordantly and factiously.

But it admits the impassive essence after the passive manner; and in short it participates of them according to its peculiar nature and not according to their power.

As, therefore, that which comes into existence partakes of real being, as by heredity, and the body receives the incorporeal essence after a corporeal manner, so likewise the natural and material bodies in the realm of generated existence, it may be, participate in a disorderly and discordant manner of the non-material and śtherial bodies, which are above the realms of nature and generated existence.

They are absurd, therefore, who attribute color, figure and the sense of feeling to mental forms, because those that participate of them are of such a kind; and so are they also who impute malignity to the bodies in the sky because their participants are sometimes bad.

For unless the one who is participating had some such aberration at the beginning, there would be no such communication. But if that which is imparted is received as being foreign and inimical, it may, perhaps, become as something different, and to those belonging about the earth, it is evil and disorderly. This participation, therefore, and the commingling of aura of the realm of matter with that of the non-material realm, becomes a cause of much essential diversity in the inferior races; and besides these, that which is given forth in one way, is received after another.

Thus, for example, the aura of Kronos (Seb) is dense, but that of ArÍs (Mandu) is impulsive; yet the passive generative receptacle in those belonging in the realm of matter receives the former according to its consolidation and coolness, but the latter according to the warmth beyond the usual condition.

Hence do not corrupting influence and the disproportionateness come through the deviation of the recipients, which is productive of inharmoniousness, pertaining to the realm of matter and impressionable?

Hence the feebleness. incident to regions in the realm of matter and earthly existence, not being capable of the genuine power and absolutely pure life of the divine ones of the śtherial region, refers its own condition to the Primary Causes -- just as though a person distempered in body and not able to endure the life-giving warmth of the Sun, should have the audacity to affirm from his own condition, the falsehood that the Sun is of no benefit to health or life.

Something of this kind, however, may be the case in the general order and constitution of the universe, as the same things may be the means of safety to the universe and to every one, through the completeness, both of the things that are possible and those by which they are possible, but are harmful to the imperfect through their specific lack of harmony. Likewise in the motion of the universe, the revolutions in like manner maintain order in every respect, but some one of the parts is injured now and then by another, as we see occurring in a dance.

To repeat the statement once more, it is the natural tendency of partial and incomplete things to decompose and undergo change. It is not proper, however, to attribute this peculiarity to the universal and primary causes, either as being inherent in them or as extending from them into this lower region.
Hence, from considerations of such a nature, it is demonstrated that neither the gods (of the planets) in the sky themselves, nor their gifts, bring evil."

I have comments to this fragment, and I spent allot of time wandering what is the exact meaning of this fragment, but first I would like to see your comments.
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Gunhilde



Joined: 10 Jun 2006
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Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 2:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My comment is that I don't understand any of this; it sounds like academese. Can someone translate into laypeople-speak?
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Lainie



Joined: 25 Jan 2006
Posts: 142
Location: Long Beach, NY

Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 9:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

By different degrees (of feeling) humans do NOT like change. Those planets which represent change have gotten the reputation of being "malefic." Also, we humans do NOT like to be told "NO" and therefore, the planet which represent that word, Saturn, was, in the past, thought to be malefic.

We are all in a state of change all the time. When the change makes us feel good, we think it's lucky. But in a way that's just coincidence. There's an old saying, "It's a truly ill wind that blows NO one good." And it is true that what is a tragedy for one person can be good luck to another.

What IS true us that there are in truth, VERY difficult and unlucky "aspects", and the more of these there are by natus or transit, the more "malefic" it feels.

However, I do believe there is one planet that I, personally, feel is malefic....and I have had MANY arguments over this belief..... and that is Neptune. Neptune's ENTIRE FUNCTION is deception..... in many, many forms. Some of these forms feel good and even bring about "good" results..... but unfortunately, Neptune's basic effect is "fear" - "confusion"- "deception"- "obsession" - "addiction" - "ignorance" - "unconsciousness" - well, I could go on. Once having a strong Neptune, one is vulnerable to it's most powerful effects. The worst is being prone to self-deception and lack of consciousness.
Remember, Neptune rules "oblivion".
BUT.... because it also rules "transcendence" it seems to be a necessary energy. Where would we be if we "could never" pretend? LOL.... as soon as we realized we would all one day die we might just end our lives on the spot!! Neptune has it's function.
Lainie
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sasha_i



Joined: 06 Apr 2005
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Location: Bucuresti

Posted: Tue Jun 20, 2006 10:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I understand from this fragment is that planets are essences and that essence canít be good or bad, beneficent or malefic, or at least that they could be good in the sense of the Bible phrase that the whole universe, with its structure and principles is good.
Only the nature of the material world (with some exceptions), has oppositions like good and bad. So, only nature is prone to constant change. But as I say I think that the fragment speaks about planets as essences, and about the things from earth as nature combined with essence or just simply nature without essences (but nature as a material manifestation of the superior creative essence-I hope Iím helping!!! Excuse me if I donít).
Clarifying (I hope) this issue it comes the next one.

The fragment tells us that there is at least a connection between planets and things (lato sensu) and the nature of the things, or that there is also a connection not with the nature but also with the essence of human beings (more clearly to speak the soul or anima).
The fragment states that those things, human beings, have their power independently from the influence of the planets, power coming from their generative character of their existences.

The third issue would be:
Those things or human beings are subject to the influences of the planets, but they are subject only in accordance with their nature and essence.
They participate to the rays of creation, but in a more or less corporeal manner (with few exceptions), diverting it in some way.

Conclusion:
Planets are impassive and unchangeable, they manifest their essence, influencing the lower spheres (more material in some way). From another perspective the realm of generated existence is constantly different, continually changing, manifesting the superior rays more or completely in a corporeal manner (either constructive or destructive).

I must state that what I have said is just my point of view about what Iamblichus says in this fragment.
In other words I tried to clarify the text. Just to clarify and nothing else.
From this point, after clarifying what the author wanted to say, we could talk about the real issue of this topic:
Do we have to take textual the astrological concepts or there is something else involved here like for example, a key of the truth, an algorithm of future?
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astrojin



Joined: 15 Nov 2005
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Posted: Wed Jun 21, 2006 3:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Last edited by astrojin on Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
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yuzuru



Joined: 01 Apr 2005
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Posted: Sun Jun 25, 2006 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Again and again the same old threads repeating of the "enlighted astrologer" trying to prove tradition is wrong and Alan Leo right.
The answer is simple, without malefics no prediction.
The rest is only the new age pseudo phylosophy that modern astrology think it is an universal truth.
Why don`t study tradition before think you can change it ? Or else just practice modern astrology... all modern astrologers are in agreement here there are no malefics. All who really follow the tradition know that malefics exists.
So don`t waste everyone`s time which this so pre made conclusions trying to prove that 5000 years of knowledge should be substituted by your so enlighted self help phylosophy
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MarkF



Joined: 22 Oct 2003
Posts: 523
Location: Outside Washington, DC

Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I totally agree with how nonsensical it is to say that there is no such thing as a malefic or a benefic. Can anyone look at the history of the 20th century and not see something malefic? Of course every planet has two sides, and I know one astrologer who told me that she thought of Venus as the "most malefic planet" when I told her of something I had done while I was in a troubled time in a relationship. What I think is modern astrologyís biggest deficit is that it doesn't seem to use the terms of essential dignity and debility. Without those terms, you can't tell when Venus is helpful or hurtful, etc.

Another thing you'll see from modern astrologers, is that they say there is nothing that is all bad - except Mercury retrograde, and that's WAY bad. You'll see that one come up as something to blame all the problems of the world. And it's retrograde so often that no matter what happens either in the world or in someone's life gets blamed on Mercury retrograde.

Astrojin has it right.
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Sue



Joined: 11 Oct 2003
Posts: 945
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Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 6:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think the original poster is simply trying to get some feedback on this particular fragment. I do not recall any statement to the effect that there are no malefics and only benefics. It is very difficult to get a grasp of one small section of any authorís work and expect to be able to understand what they is saying. Iamblicus is particularly difficult because he can be so complicated. If you donít know anything about his triad system then this passage will not make sense. He is not suggesting that there is no such thing as benefic and malefic. He is certainly not arguing that there are no evil influences. In fact, most of the book is an explanation of his theories of differences between such things as divine beings and daemons. In fact, if he thought that he wouldn't have been so interested in theurgy. Theurgy is not, contrary to popular opinion, just another form of magic. It is an attempt to go back through the layers in order to be able to correct where things went wrong.

Basically, Iamblicus is saying that the nature of the planetary gods is divine and, as such, their natures are those of all divine beings. He explains that the planets partake of the nature of divine beings, albeit corporeal ones. However, there is much more to it. He was a Neoplatonist who believed in the theory of the triad so that everything came from the ĎOneí. It started from the monad whose first principle is nous (intellect). Between this and other principles a second ĎOneí followed. This was the producer of soul (psyche). The nous is further divided into two areas, the sphere of the intelligable and intellective. The intelligable is the object of thougth and the intellective is the domain of thought. This completes the triad. However, it gets more complicated than that. Through these principles flows other powers which are transmitted through generation. These are impassive and immutable but they proceed into that which is mutable and passive. But sometimes this transmission will go wrong when participation in a nature contrary to one's own takes place. It is the recipient of the contrary nature that has caused the evil, not the planet. In other words, it is not the planet itself that is malefic but that there can be malefic consequences, which are not the fault of the planet. This seems a bit like saying ĎNo officer, I didnít kill him. It was the gun in my hand that did that.í Iamblicus saidí Ďabsurd are those who ascribe depravity to the celestial bodies because their participants sometimes produce evil. For the participation from the first could not be a thing of this kind, unless the recipient had some mutation.í (Iamblicus On the Mysteries I XVIII 54-55 trans. Thomas Taylor).

But one thing he seems to be saying is that a difficulty arises when the recipient is unable to fully partake in the offer that has been imparted. Often, what is imparted in one way is received in another by terrestrial substances. He uses an example of Saturn and Mars where their natures are received by terrestrial substances in a way that is not in keeping with the true nature that was imparted. The problem is with the inability to receive the genuine power and most pure life of the etherial natures and thereforethe recipient transfers its own passion to first causes. Iamblicus gives the example of someone who is unable to tolerate the heat of the Sun and blames the Sun saying that the Sun is not useful to health or life. 'It is not proper to ascribe these to wholes and first causes, either as if they existed in them, or as if they prceeded to terrestrial substances from them. Hence, through these things it is demonstrated, that neither the celestial gods, nor their gifts are effective of evil.' (Iamblicus On the Mysteries I XVIII 55-56 trans. Thomas Taylor).

I did some work on Iamblicus last year but I am still nowhere near getting my head fully around it. He takes a lot of work but some of his views are very interesting. I like the idea of looking at how energies are received in the active and participatory sense. I would imagine that it is a very different view between 'this is what Mars did to me' and 'this is how I received Mars.'
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astrojin



Joined: 15 Nov 2005
Posts: 469

Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To MarkF and Yuzuru,

I agree...

To everyone else,

I really can't make any academic comments as I have not studied Iamblichus myself.

Regardless of what this thread is all about, if an astrologer (presumably modern) comes to me and claim that there are no malefic planets or malefic aspects or simply no malefics**...I keep my mouth shut (if I don't feel like arguing) and hope that he is right though I know he is WRONG.

Cheerio,

PS: ** with the right definition of malefics!!!
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Lainie



Joined: 25 Jan 2006
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Location: Long Beach, NY

Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Astrojin,
No competent astrologer will ever tell you there are no malefic aspects.

On this site there are many people in varying stages of studying the science and art of astrology.
It is so easy for those beginning students or even intermediate ones to take what someone says as "the truth" because the writer is articulate and seems to know exactly what he is talking about.

The worst way to teach astrology is to teach "absolutes".....this or that is good or bad, lucky or unlucky, etc., ALL THE TIME.

One MUST take so many variables into consideration before judging something. Yes, at the end it might be found that a person's Venus IS mostly debilitated....or Mars, or the Moon. BUT.... there are mitigating aspects, and transits, and progressions. NOTHING is the same for an entire lifetime.....neither good luck nor bad.

A good astrologer will warn a person when a crisis period is coming, and will cheer that person on when aspects & transits are "go" signals. A good astrologer won't make something sound worse or better than it actually is.

This balancing act is the "art" of astrology.
It takes time to perfect.
Lainie 8)
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sasha_i



Joined: 06 Apr 2005
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Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Again and again the same old threads repeating of the "enlighted astrologer" trying to prove tradition is wrong and Alan Leo right.
Why don`t study tradition before think you can change it ? Or else just practice modern astrology... all modern astrologers are in agreement here there are no malefics.


If this is a definitely statement I would try to ask you to be less passionate in discussions and not to make general statements from the beginning without trying first to talk and ask, or to continue the dialog.
But if it is not a definitely statement and if there is a chance for me to make you interested in a discussion, I would say that I didnít try to prove that tradition is wrong and Alan Leo is right. First I have few information about Alan Leo and his work. Second of all Iím not trying to say that tradition is wrong.

Iím the last person who could change tradition. I wonít practice modern astrology because Iím not interested. I could say that quite from the beginnings of my astrology, I tried to study traditional astrology.

Quote:
So don`t waste everyone`s time which this so pre made conclusions trying to prove that 5000 years of knowledge should be substituted by your so enlighted self help phylosophy


This is so obviously tendentious that I must give a very straight answer:
For God's sake whoís trying to waste your time?!

Regard the benefic and malefic planets I consider that generally, planets are neither benefic nor malefic. Astrological speaking planets are benefic or malefic (or possibly malefic in one sense and benefic in another sense or area). Again I repeat, astrological speaking. After all astrology is speaking about manís life and if it is a human instrument it must have this malefic benefic opposition. If you donít take this in consideration, YOU DONíT TALK ABOUT HUMAN REALITY. You could define this good or bad (because ones good is others bad) but again you canít give up to something that is the essence of human life.
To put this kind of immobility in the center of astrology (and more general in human life) is like entering in a phantasmagorical story, a never ending story, a no conclusion story (other than that inexistent human immobility). In the end after realizing that he must come back to reality, a so called astrologer would give a general useful advice that you didnít ask for.
So it is obviously for me that Iamblicos didnít know very much astrology, or didnít understand its structure. For him is pardonable, but for modern astrologers Ö

But there is also the opinion that a planet even when it brings mischief to someone is in fact working for the general progress of native, for a better understanding of life (even though it is hardly to say what is that final happy ending). It is possible, but in this case you would have to admit again that bad things actually happen in native life (and again we come to the necessary opposition malefic benefic), and that this is more likely the purposes of astrology than to tell you that there is a final reason for things that happen to you. This reason I think is more likely your own problem, your own puzzle. There is this tendency for modern astrology to develop with the help of astrology a whole manual of self enlightenment. This tendency transformed astrology into an initiation in different surrogated beliefs. Astrology must be an instrument not a mind control.
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astrojin



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Posted: Sun Jul 09, 2006 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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