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Declination & Latitude in the tradition

 
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 12:17 pm    Post subject: Declination & Latitude in the tradition Reply with quote

I am trying to gain a better understanding of the use of declination and latitude in the tradition.

I have found this article a useful introduction to the subject:

http://www.declination.org/history.htm#traditional

There does seem a clear link between the declination of the Sun and the idea of antiscion points. Although as Deb's article points out the idea of Antiscia may well have been inspired by Neo-Pythagorean philosophy.

http://www.skyscript.co.uk/antiscia.html

In terms of the use of latitude I am familiar from horary that a stars proximity by latitude will increase its importance if it is close to a key point in terms of zodiacal longtitude.

Again from horary there is the idea that a planet is strengthened or weakened in a judgement depending on whether it is high or low in latitude and north or south of the ecliptic.

However thats about the extent of my knowledge on the subject!

I am curious about whether the parallel aspect has a traditional orgin and if so how was it used?

As its currently understood in modern astrology a Parallel aspect is when two Planets have equal distance in declination on the same side of the equator. A similar effect to the conjunction. Contra-parallel is the equal distance in declination on opposite sides of the equator and is similar in effect to the opposition aspect.

I had thought this was what what Placido de Tito was referring to in the Primum Mobile but that appears mistaken according to thelink above.

Instead De Tito appears to have been proposing the Parallel in Mundo. This has to do with a similarity of relationship between two planets on opposite sides of, and the same distance, measured along the Equator, from any one of the four angles of the horoscope.

So I am now wondering does the idea of parallels of declination have an origin in the tradition at all? What about parallels of latitude when two planets are the same number of degrees of arc North or South of the Ecliptic?

Any comments, feedback, clarification or constructive criticism please?

Mark


Last edited by Mark on Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:48 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Maurice McCann



Joined: 24 Oct 2005
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 1:12 pm    Post subject: Declination & Latitude in the tradition Reply with quote

MarkC writes,
Quote:
I am curious about whether the parallel aspect has a traditional orgin and if so how was it used?


It was the Sun's north parallel of declination at noon at the summer solstice that inspired Ptolemy to designate the Sun as ruler of Leo and the Moon as ruler of Cancer, along with the other planets. (Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos, Robbins trans. pp. 79-80). It was from the Sun's parallel of declination that he was then able to designate the planets' detriments, falls, and the other essential dignities.

Today we mistakenly say that the Sun has entered 0 degrees Cancer at the time of the summer Solstice, which would of course place its antiscion at 30 degrees Gemini, one and the same point. This is the only day in the year, supposedly, when the Sun occupies this one position by all three aspects, namely longitude, parallel of declination and antiscion.

Maurice.
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Maurice,

I appreciate you spending your time on this. I know you have a lot of expertise in this area. I actually have a copy of your book: ''The Sun and the Aspects'' which expands the point you made somewhat further.

Its the best book I have seen available on the traditional approach to the aspects. You provide an interesting alternative explanation for the origin of the aspects. Also your comments on the southern hemisphere and the dignities are radical but most thought provoking. The chapters on how the the 19th century astrologers drifted away from traditional techniques is also fascinating. I highly recommend this book to all students of the tradition.

Your website has a lot of useful information too on horary and the tradition generally.

I have found a link to an article by you on Bonatti which appeared as ''Some Comments on Bonatti's Liber Astronomiae Part III'
Published by Project Hindsight Latin Track Vol. XI.

Quote:
It should also be noted that the moiety of orbs of the planets apply to parallels of declination and the antiscia exactly the same as in major aspects. The belief that parallels are allowed one and a half degrees and the antiscia one degree does not make sense. There is no logical reason as to why divisions should be made between planetary orbs in major aspects, parallels or antiscia, their orbs are all the same.


Full article:
http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/mcmcann/bonatti.htm

So were parallels of declination a technique used by Bonatti then? If so how did he use them?

I am assuming the idea of the contra-parallel is a purely modernist concept?

On the use of orbs if I understand you correctly you are suggesting extending the orb of application of a parallel of declination to the joint moeity of the planets concerned rather than the standard 1 degree orb?

Equally, on Antiscion you seem to be suggesting expanding the range of Antiscion to a similar orb as Ptolemaic aspects? Was this a technique proposed by any medieval or renaissance astrologers? Or are you just arguing for a logically consistent use of orbs here?

Sorry to hit you with so many questions! I am just really fascinated by this under-discussed area.

I am hoping to get a copy of Paul Newman's book 'Declination' soon when it is re-printed. However, I am not sure how strong it is from a traditional perspective.

Mark
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Maurice McCann



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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:06 pm    Post subject: Declination & Latitude in the tradition Reply with quote

Hi MarkC,
Quote:
So were parallels of declination a technique used by Bonatti then? If so how did he use them?
Not that I'm aware of, the expert in that field is Robert Zoller. I may give him an email in the next few days and get back to you.

You say, 'I am assuming the idea of the contra-parallel is a purely modernist concept?'

Lilly only mentions declination on p. 49 of Christian Astrology and does not refer to contraparallels. This sounds like a subject worth researching.
Quote:
On the use of orbs if I understand you correctly you are suggesting extending the orb of application of a parallel of declination to the joint moeity of the planets concerned rather than the standard 1 degree orb?

The idea was to stick with the moiety of the orbs of the planets as set out by Lilly and others and not change them because of the modern idea that aspects, including parallels and antiscions, have orbs. To repeat, the ptolemaic aspects, parallels of declination and antiscions do not have orbs, it is the planets that have the orbs.
Quote:
Equally, on Antiscion you seem to be suggesting expanding the range of Antiscion to a similar orb as Ptolemaic aspects? Was this a technique proposed by any medieval or renaissance astrologers? Or are you just arguing for a logically consistent use of orbs here?

The ancients never wrote about the orbs of the Ptolemaic aspects, or the orbs of the antiscions. I am arguing for a logically consistent use of the orbs of the moieties of the planets.

The Paul Newman book is worth buying, I have a copy myself.

Thanks MarkC for the above questions you have made me think a bit deeper about the answers.

Maurice.[/quote]
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Maurice,

Thanks again for your reply,

Quote:
The ancients never wrote about the orbs of the Ptolemaic aspects, or the orbs of the antiscions. I am arguing for a logically consistent use of the orbs of the moieties of the planets.


Sorry the kind of sloppy language I used previously does lead to sloppy thinking! What your stating does make perfect sense. If the orbs of planetary moieties really do matter as many of us were recently arguing on another thread their use needs to be consistent. However, I had thought with antiscia the point was the planet was on the precise mirror like point of Solar declination. If we start using Lilly's orbs for example that means the Sun & Moon could be linked by antiscion even though over 14 degrees away from the point of precise antiscion?. I guess your point is that as with ptolemaic aspects the connection does not need to be exact only in orb? Very thought provoking! Have you any experience of using this approach in horary? If one used this approach to both antiscion and declination it would presumably significantly increase the connections between the planets.

If you can find out any more about Bonatti's use of declination or latitude I would be most grateful. This seems an area where Lilly doesn't have an awful lot to say.

Thanks

Mark
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Maurice McCann



Joined: 24 Oct 2005
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 5:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi MarkC,
Would you believe it but William Lilly writes,'I observe the contrantiscion fals neer to the degree of Jupiter...' See p. 187 the final paragraph before he begins writing about the 3rd house of brothers and sisters etc.
So the answer is yes the older astrologers did write about contrantiscions.[/u]
I'll check further later and see if there are other references.

Maurice.
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Maurice McCann



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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lilly's quote should read 'I observe the contrantiscion of Saturn fals neer to the degree of Jupiter...'

Maurice.
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Mark
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Maurice,

Well perhaps I should study Lilly more before I start writing him off. Thirty years should about do it. Very Happy

It would be most interesting to see if Lilly makes any references to planets linked by declination in his judgements in Christian astrology. That should at least clarify his approach. The example you gave of Lilly's use of contra-antiscion doesn't seem to clarify if he was relying more on planetary orbs or the close proximity of Saturn to the actual antiscion degree of Jupiter. I guess its a question of checking out more examples in CA.

However, I think we may be at slightly cross purposes. I was querying if the contra-parallel of declination was suggested in any traditional sources. I had always assumed the contra-antiscion was a solid traditional concept. I can see they both relate to opposing points of declination in theory but I assumed they differed as the contra-parallel doesn't require the planets to be linked by antiscion points to begin with.

Perhaps, my basic understanding of astronomy is letting me down here but surely antiscion points only relate to solar declination degrees? So an antiscion point connecting two planets doesn't mean they necessarily share close declination?


Mark


Last edited by Mark on Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:45 pm; edited 5 times in total
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Deb
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Posted: Tue Oct 17, 2006 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

References to Lilly’s use of antiscia are on p. 164, pp.186-187, p.255, p.257, p.258, p.263 and p.288.
These show that he considered Antiscia relationships to house cusps and planets. He left no evidence of using aspects to or from the antiscia (only conjunctions, although the contra-antiscion is obviously tied into the opposition of the antiscion), and he required an exact correspondence or a very close orb.
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Mark
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Posted: Wed Oct 18, 2006 12:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Deb,

I have just re-read your article on Antiscia with the link I gave earlier and I can see a lot of the answers to my questions were already there.

Quote:
In traditional astrology, conjunction by celestial latitude (which occurs when two planets are in the same hemisphere and equally placed north or south of the ecliptic) is important; but it was not part of the antiscia technique and should not be confused with the modem 'parallels of declination' which are measured instead from the equator. To ancient astrologers the direction and latitude of a planet were very significant, used to reveal much about a planet's power and fortitude. The best planetary position is to be in the northern hemisphere, rising in latitude; the worst in the south, descending. This consideration is especially relevant to the Moon, who is most fortuitous when northern, rising, and at the same time increasing in light.


From what you state it appears that with the important exception of Antiscia ,dealing with Solar declination points, the main focus in the tradition therefore appears to be latitude. In particular planet's relationship to the N or S of the ecliptic rather than looking at planets position in declination i.e. in relation N or S of the Celestial Equator.

I am intrigued by your research indicating Antiscion points were used in classical times from the Equinox as well Solstice points. Is it still correct to call this technique Antiscia? What signs would Aries/Libra be in relationship with? The next or last sign in zodiacal order i.e. Taurus/Scorpio or Pisces/Virgo? Does it fan out from these signs like Solstice based Antiscions?

I was also interested to see your point about an Antiscia possibly being unfavourable if a malefic was involved. Presumably, by the same principle a contra-antiscion could be favourable with the benefics involved?

Mark
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deeptiman



Joined: 15 May 2005
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Posted: Fri Oct 20, 2006 1:53 pm    Post subject: Intriguing mention of Dorotheus Reply with quote

Dear Fellows astrologers,
there's an intriguing mention about declination in Carmen Astrologicum.
Dorotheus of Sidon(first century AD),in the book 3 wrote:
"Look at the casting of rays in latitude also because sometimes a planet is aspecting from opposition,and if you calculate it in latitude and you find one (planet) in the south,the other in the north,then this is not in opposition..."
(Carmen astrologicum -book 3,chapter 1,page 81 -astrology classics publishers 2005).
I can't imagine exactly what Dorotheus is talking about here.In this chapter he was talking about a system of directing by terms,some kind of ancient primary direction,and talks about the importance of looking transits too... Any hints?
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Mark
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Posted: Mon Oct 23, 2006 11:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Deepman,

I will check out my copy of Dorotheus of Sidon. Thanks for that. However, as noted earlier it seems his focus is latitude rather than declination. Latitude is the position of a body North or South of the ecliptic while declination traces the position of a planet or star North or South of the Celestial Equator.

Like you I am not exactly clear what Doreotheus is referring to yet. I have a few ideas but I think I will have a look at this whole section in Carmen Astrologicum first.

Thanks again

Mark
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