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The Temperament
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Billy



Joined: 10 Oct 2008
Posts: 25

Posted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Huh? My remark vis-à-vis "an investment in a fixed idea" was made with regard to the tenacity with which "late modern" astrologers defend ideas that are actually misinterpretations of traditional astrological concepts. No matter what Jung or Greene et al. state to the contrary, air and water are not opposite types, any more than earth and fire are. One would have to invent an entirely new system of astrology, completely disconnected from its predecessors, in order to make such an argument. And this is precisely what modern astrologers have done: they have invented an entirely new system of astrology, one in which air and water are opposites, and one in which sign rulership is based on affinity. This system has no consistent symbolic or theoretical underpinnings other than the preferences and wishes of its designers.


First of all it’s not clear to me, at this stage that any misinterpretations have been made here.
The humors go back to Hippocrates/Aristotle. At this time all sorts of ideas were feeding into the Hellenistic mindset. One thing to bear in mind about Psychological Astrology is that to some extent it bypasses astrology post Ptolemy. It seems to me they are often arguing that by the time Ptolemy, Valens, Dorotheus..., etc started writing some of the essence as to what astrology was designed to do had been lost and misunderstood. We will have to wait for all these translations to be finished for a fuller picture. R Hand gave a fascinating talk about this available at You Tube, called ‘Astrology, Morality and Ethics’.

If we explore the hot/cold/wet/ dry idea then earth/air and fire/water have less in common, in a more overt behavioural sense. I was looking at this temperament/type issue in relation to the Thema Mundi:

Earth and Air// Water and Fire are in 30/90/150 degree rels’s = One hard aspect
Earth and Fire // Air and Water are in 30/90/150 degree rel's = One hard aspect
Earth and Water // Fire and Air are in 60/180 degree rel’s = One hard and one easy aspect.

So the geometry suggests earth/water and air/fire have the most in common, the Jung/Greene view, or at least get along better and it doesn’t say whether water should be opposite fire or air.

What Jung and co are saying is when you are functioning in a certain way then something else becomes unconscious.
‘If I consciously function as a ‘feeling’ type, and handle the world on the basis of emotional judgements, the unconscious will compensate through a masculine soul image which is rational. As a woman my animus will then be highly logical and it will appear in dreams as a man or as an image of male logos, such as an eagle. Alternatively it will be projected onto the outer world and be carried either by men I fall in love with, or by intellectual vehicles to which I am strongly attracted’. (Maggie Hyde -Jung and Astrology, 92).

Hyde is overall quite dubious as to whether Jung’s model can be superimposed onto the chart, and not just the ‘types’. She quotes Hand from ‘Horoscope symbols’:
‘…one example among many of astrologers trying to make a one-to –one translation from one symbol system (Jungian psychology) to another (astrology). Often this is done in order to legitimise astrology, but this is unfortunate, because psychology understood as a system of psychology in its own right has a symbolic framework much more powerful than any in orthodox psychology’.

So the response to this from a psychologist would be where’s the evidence for this ‘powerful’ and the response from a psychological astrologer, of whom Hand is a big fan (these days at least), is they don’t superimpose. Greene was trying to deepen and expand temperament theory and bring it into the modern world. Tom demonstrates this in his thoughts on Mitchell and desire. Here you can see the genesis of ideas as to the modern ‘feeling’ type. Hyde says Greene ‘ does not seek definite correspondences. In practice her approach is better termed the showing of the psyche, rather than ‘the map’.

Quote:

I'm not sure what this means. Moreover, I find the term "psychological astrologer" imprecise at best. "Psychological" in what sense? Freudian? Jungian? Adlerian? Kleinian? Rogerian? Maslowian? Skinnerian? Elliserian? Laingian? Reichian? Lacanian ? Existential? Phenomenological? Relational? Interpersonal? "Psychological astrology" might mean anything, and might, therefore, mean nothing.

Also, are the practitioners of "psychological astrology" certified clinicians whose credentials are recognized by an accredited institution? Or are they simply enthusiasts who have read a few books on pop psychology and taken a few classes from a self-described "psychological astrologer


All of these potentially, plus others. The idea is to use a model or perspective that elucidates something on the chart. Look at what Greene does, sometimes she will talk about Klein, sometimes Freud, sometimes Adler, etc. What I think psychological astrology lacks is enough understanding of academic psychology. But I don’t know if this is a lack of knowledge or a sense that some of these ideas lack relevance. One dictum of Psychological astrology is to see someone who can understand your chart better than another person. So if you have a load of Scorpio see a Freudian, Leo see a Jungian and so on. Also if you are very watery (or phlegmatic) see an astrologer who has some personal knowledge of this themselves.

As to qualifications, astrology is unregulated.

Quote:
again, I think this mixes apples with oranges, and is another result of the disconnect between traditional and modernist understandings of astrology. traditional astrological delineations are normative, not descriptive: they are not intended to tell you what you are really "like," but what you should really "be." they offer a language script rather than a data description


One of the things I have noticed on this thread is the idea has been postulated that 'temperament ' doesn’t always work. However 'type' always works, if Jung is right, since this is hard-wired into someone’s brain. (At least this is how I understand it, Jung was nothing if not ambivalent on a whole range of things including Astrology). So if psychological astrologers are right about a horoscope being able to say something about this then in theory we won't have any exceptions to the rule. I can’t see why this can’t be assessed. It’s been a while since I was involved in experimental design but I think I could knock something up in a few days. The problem is getting the subjects and I think we would need very young children here and lots of them! Plus we would need some talented Psychological astrologers and I doubt at this time there would be many more than 20-50 in the world, maybe less, and this 'group' as far as I’m aware aren’t interested in this sort of test.

Quote:

how can one be reverent toward a tradition one is not even aware of, let alone understands?


How do you know what Greene knows about the tradition, have you spoken to her? I assume from Tom’s posts that he is unfamiliar with psychological astrology but I’m not certain of this I’m just drawing various inferences from what he writes and what he doesn’t. He says he has read some Greene but found it verbose and meandering, has he enough understanding of psychological models to be able to make much sense of it? I think you are assuming way to much here, the reason I said reverence is that Greene often goes back to the source whether this is myth, Plato, the Thema Mundi whatever, she notoriously changed the 'modern' idea of the IC as mother saying it was always father or parents in the tradition and this is what she found with her clients. People seem to assume she won’t start using for example, Hellenistic timing techniques tomorrow, why?

Quote:
again, apples and oranges. cancer, scorpio, and pisces are signs of the zodiac, not qualities of temperament. you start from the wrong position and depart from the wrong place.


Are you arguing here that Hippocrates or whoever developed this theory without reference to then current thinking as to the relationship between elements, cycles and seasons. I don’t follow you here.

In terms of a time line, discussion about elements started between 500-600BCE. Once the early horoscopes started being created and this elemental theory was assimilated into it, the signs/constellations already had certain meanings projected into them.

Quote:
Modern astrology tells you what you are like and what you could become: traditional astrology tells you who you are and what you should be. The destinations may seem similar (transcendence on the one hand, transformation on the other), but the points of departure are very different. The modern approach is pharmaceutical: blitz the organism. The traditional approach is alchemical: turn lead into gold. The modern approach is diagnostic; the traditional approach is remedial

Modern astrology seems obsessed with enlightenment to the detriment of darkness, while traditional astrology first acknowledges the darkness ("you love old, hard-featured women or poor dirty wenches!") and then moves toward transformation (not transcendence) into the light. This, at least, is how I see it.


You would need to define 'modern' astrology. Psychological astrology is almost the opposite of what you see 'modern' astrology as being. Firstly, with a nod to Jung, Alchemy often crops up. Secondly it is often seen as very dark. See Greene's 'Dark of the soul’. Here she explores serial killers, psychopaths, Third Reich, scapegoating and so on.

I don’t mean to make fun of your thinking but you can’t be anything until you become something and what you are like is who you are. Psychological astrology intends to be ‘remedial’ and transformative this is its raison d’etre. Its central premise is if you don’t know what’s generating your behaviour then you are likely to just repeat them.

Tom demonstrates, with his analysis of Mitchell’s chart on the other thread, how his lens explores the surface of Mitchell’s psyche. He is an astrological cognitive-behaviourist.
The question is do these unconscious drives, motivations and complexes, the focus of depth psychology, exist and can a horoscope say something about them? If you think they don’t then you really have no need for Psychological astrology and can just carry on seeing people in these more simplistic terms.

The goals of Psychological Astrology can be summed up as:

· Know thyself

· As above so below
To achieve the miracle of the one thing

· Turn lead (unconscious) into gold (conscious)


What Psychological Astrology books have you read Andrew?
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Andrew



Joined: 31 Dec 2004
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Posted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 2:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Yes it is broad, but that doesn't make it inaccurate. I think Andrew's observation of the differences between transformative and transcending are also accurate, but I'm sure they don't apply to 100% of all astrologers.


Yes, thank you Tom, that's the gist of what I meant. Do we transcend or do we transform? These are perspectives that have influenced virtually every religion throughout history. The normative Judao-Christian-Islamic take on this is that we transform: the body is transfigured into spirit, incorporated into spirit, resurrected. It is not abandoned, not left behind.

Dualistic philosophies say: we transcend the body. The body is but a shell to be left behind. Foster Bailey, on the death of his wife Alice, wrote: "Mrs. Bailey gained her release from the limitations of the physical vehicle." This perfectly expresses the Theosophical attitude toward matter: matter is a vehicle from which we seek release; transcendence, not transfiguration.
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Andrew



Joined: 31 Dec 2004
Posts: 360

Posted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
So the geometry suggests earth/water and air/fire have the most in common, the Jung/Greene view, or at least get along better and it doesn’t say whether water should be opposite fire or air.


Jung writes about the four functions: typology. Greenbaum writes about the four humors: temperament. Again, apples and oranges. And again, in temperament theory, the qualities of hot and dry (which generate fire) are not opposed to the qualities of hot and moist (which generate air).

Quote:
As to qualifications, astrology is unregulated.


But psychology isn't unregulated. If someone claims to counsel others from a psychological perspective, using various therapeutic modalities, but lacks the requisite training and certification, he or she is misrepresenting his or her qualifications. This is at best unethical, and at worst, illegal.

Quote:
Plus we would need some talented Psychological astrologers and I doubt at this time there would be many more than 20-50 in the world, maybe less, and this 'group' as far as I’m aware aren’t interested in this sort of test.


And what would be your criteria for identifying whether a psychological astrologer is "talented"? Would there be any independent verification of such claims?

Quote:
How do you know what Greene knows about the tradition, have you spoken to her?


I wasn't referring to Greene in particular but to "psychological astrologers" in general.

See, for example:

http://horoscopicastrologyblog.com/2008/01/08/a-rejoinder-to-glenn-perrys-article-from-ancient-to-postmodern-astrology/

Quote:
I don’t mean to make fun of your thinking but you can’t be anything until you become something and what you are like is who you are.


And you know this how, precisely?

Quote:
Its central premise is if you don’t know what’s generating your behaviour then you are likely to just repeat them.


Is the central premise sound? While there may be some merit to this, it is hardly a guarantee of anything. I've known individuals (including a few practitioners) who've been in therapy for years, who continue to repeat their behavior, regardless of the amount of insight they have into it. Insight alone doesn't seem to resolve much of anything.

Quote:
He is an astrological cognitive-behaviourist.


Solely on the basis of his postings on this forum, you've been able to determine his therapeutic perspective. C'est incroyable!

Quote:
What Psychological Astrology books have you read Andrew?


Greene, Sasportas, all the rage in the 1980s. I don't dislike Greene: her book The Astrology of Fate is one of my favorites. But, sorry to say, fire and air are not opposites. That's where she's wrong.
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Billy



Joined: 10 Oct 2008
Posts: 25

Posted: Thu Nov 06, 2008 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:

Jung writes about the four functions: typology. Greenbaum writes about the four humors: temperament. Again, apples and oranges. And again, in temperament theory, the qualities of hot and dry (which generate fire) are not opposed to the qualities of hot and moist (which generate air).


But it's apples and oranges for you not Greene et al.
It's water and air that we are discussing as 'opposite' not fire/air, these are seen as similar, extrovert/masculine/yang if you like.

Quote:

But psychology isn't unregulated. If someone claims to counsel others from a psychological perspective, using various therapeutic modalities, but lacks the requisite training and certification, he or she is misrepresenting his or her qualifications. This is at best unethical, and at worst, illegal.


If they did this it would be, but do they? In Greene's case she is working as either an astrologer or a Jungian analyst. Very different ways of working.

Quote:

And what would be your criteria for identifying whether a psychological astrologer is "talented"? Would there be any independent verification of such claims

How do you determine how any astrologer is talented?. It's usually a peer-review exercise.

Quote:

I wasn't referring to Greene in particular but to "psychological astrologers" in general.

See, for example:

http://horoscopicastrologyblog.com/2008/01/08/a-rejoinder-to-glenn-perrys-article-from-ancient-to-postmodern-astrology/



Is Perry a talented Psychological Astrologer? He seems to have written a very dubious article here, which would suggest he might lack the rigour to be 'peer reviewed' as an expert. I have read some of his articles and find him operating at a very different level of sophistication to Greene.

Quote:

Is the central premise sound? While there may be some merit to this, it is hardly a guarantee of anything. I've known individuals (including a few practitioners) who've been in therapy for years, who continue to repeat their behavior, regardless of the amount of insight they have into it. Insight alone doesn't seem to resolve much of anything.



Insight comes from astrology and psychotherapy. Different types or qualities of insight. In the former you can obtain this from a chart in a more 'intellectual' sense. In the latter for example, developing a tangible insight into your moon-Pluto opposition may takes years of therapeutic support as it may involve coming to terms with repressed, traumatic and painful feelings.

What's your point about continuing to behave in a similar way? Are you suggesting psychological astrologers, if not all astrologers, and psychotherapists are wasting their time and we are all doomed to just repeat the patterns and mistakes of our past?

Quote:

olely on the basis of his postings on this forum, you've been able to determine his therapeutic perspective. C'est incroyable!


Tom has told us his views of psychologists and Liz Greene. Plus he has revealed how he would seek to find Mitchell's temperament and how he would seek to explain her 'behaviour'. It's not a therapeutic perspective it’s a mentality or perspective. I used to work as a Cognitive -Behavioural Therapist I found it didn't suit my type/temperament, amongst other things.

Quote:
Greene, Sasportas, all the rage in the 1980s. I don't dislike Greene: her book The Astrology of Fate is one of my favorites. But, sorry to say, fire and air are not opposites. That's where she's wrong.


I can't get much of a picture about your exposure to the texts from this. I ask as in my experience those who criticise this approach tend not to be familiar with it.

Greene, and those who think Jung's model of the psyche is not only 'accurate' but ‘fits’ (to varying degrees) the astrological mandala think you are 'wrong'. So we have an impasse. However, unlike you, I don’t think they see ‘type’ as negating this hot/cold//wet/dry system just refining, deepening and modifying it.
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Tom
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Posted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
How do you know what Greene knows about the tradition, have you spoken to her? I assume from Tom’s posts that he is unfamiliar with psychological astrology but I’m not certain of this I’m just drawing various inferences from what he writes and what he doesn’t.


For the record, I studied, worked, with, read about, took lessons from the astrologers of the day when I began in the 1980s, all of whom are considered "psychological" astrologers. The authors I immediately recall reading were: Forrest, Arroyo, Rudhyar, and Greene. I left astrology for about 6 or 7 years for reasons that have nothing to do with astrology, and came back to it studying with Noel Tyl because unlike anyone I had read or studied with before, Tyl presented a systematic approach to reading the natal chart. I liked that - still do, but I gave up Tyl when I discovered the tradition (via Deb's magazine "The Traditional Astrologer" - thank you Deb). I do not claim omniscience in psychological or traditional astrology, but in most cases I have a better background in modern astrology than many modern critics of traditional astrology have in the tradition, e.g. Glen Perry.

There may be some out there, but I don't know anyone involved in traditional astrology that didn't start out with modern psychological astrology. I know few psychological astrologers who have much knowledge at all about anything of substance prior to Alan Leo. That sort of thing only bothers me when they criticize the tradition. Try this test: ask a psychological or any modern astrologer for that matter what he or she knows about Luke Broughton. I'd be surprised if many of them have even heard of him. Broughton died in 1899 and if they don't go back farther than that, they don't go back very far.

I've heard famous astrologers refer to Alan Leo as a traditional astrologer, which not only is pretty funny, but demonstrates a lack of knowledge of what came before. In other words they see Leo as typical of what came before Dane Rudhyar. I also wrote, on this thread I believe, that many if not most of the prominent psychological astrologers now practicing and teaching, simply didn't have access to the older texts, when they were learning. This is particularly true of American astrologers. We have no counterpart for Elias Ashmole. You can't study what isn't generally available. My own belief, barely documented, is that the very reason for modern psychological astrology is the lack of knowledge of what came before. And that lack of knowledge is primarily due to the lack of available resources.

I read Liz Greene's book Saturn a New Look at an Old Devil. after I was assured that everything I would ever need to know about astrology is contained in that work. It fell a bit short of those expectations. I also read, or tried to read one of those Q & A books of Greene's that she wrote with, I think Howard Sasportas, and it was here that I gave up on her. I thought Dane Rudhyrar was the all time champeen at avoiding getting to the point. He's been outdone. I do not recall the title of the book, but I'm sure it is here in the house somewhere. I have an unnatural attachment to books, even those I don't like.

Shortly after the publication of Greene's book Neptune, in an early issue of The Astrologer's Apprentice, John Frawley assured his readers that everything we needed to know about Neptune was contained in one particular article of his. I think he used it for predicting rain. (Please no angry retorts; it was a joke).

Because of a recommendation made by Robert Hand at a lecture, I tried Steven Arroyo. Not much there either. At this point I was beginning to realize that if this was all astrology had to offer, it didn't have much. Arroyo's claim that he studied all forms of astrology, found them wanting, and therefore developed his own, is hubristic to say the least. He didn't take traditional astrology back any further than Rudhyar that I could see.

In short, my journey through that field is probably typical of people who ended up where I am. No one starts with traditional astrology. In fact, to my knowledge, there is no contemporary book on traditional astrology that is intended for absolute beginners. One Kevin Burk wrote something along those lines, but when he included Chiron, I think it lost its bearings.

Finally, regarding about my opinion of psychologists. That was, admittedly, a broadside and not intended to be interpreted as my belief that all psychologists or psychotherapists are charlatans. I've known a few over the years and they are mostly nice people. I just don't think that psychologists' opinions on astrology have much merit unless they know some astrology, and taking the opinions of contemporary psychologists to make points about how traditional astrology works is not valid.

My real problem has more to do with what passes for psychotherapy. The study of psychology, that is the study of human behavior, is fascinating. Lately I'm coming around to the idea that instead of concentrating on Jung, or Freud or Adler we need to pay more attention to Pavlov. I know people who say they benefited greatly from their own psychotherapy. I don't think it should be outlawed.

Tom
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###



Joined: 08 Jul 2004
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Posted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom,

I'm not advanced enough with temperament to enter into a discussion of it full of confidence, but I'll give it a shot anyway.

Your remarks about the phlegmatic type really bug me. Laughing Not because they aren't flattering, but rather because they seem to be merely judgments and moralizations against certain traits and behavior that indeed could stem from the phlegmatic type, but aren't at its core. You've described exaggerated extreme behavior of the type, the kind of criticisms cholerics would make in annoyance and impatience about phlegmatics.

What is missing is a 'heart-of-the-matter' concise definition or description of the phlegmatic temperament, a neutral statement. There are 4 types which blend together to form a system of describing human temperament. Phlegmatic is one necessary element of that system, so we should therefore be able to list the essential qualities it contributes to the system without moving on to a discussion of 'fixing' phlegmatics with heat and strong malefics. It's interesting that Mars and Saturn are considered malefics due to immoderation, yet they can be reformed enough to shape up a lazy drunk phlegmatic. You give the impression that the phlegmatic temperament is flawed to begin with and must have outside help in order to be of any value. Yet you don't seem to want to address the fact that the phlegmatic as one of the four serves to balance and influence the others. I truly don't think you are aware of the strong bias you carry against phlegmatic qualities and how much that has influenced your posts.


Are you giving the core of the phlegmatic here?:
Quote:
I'm referring to the desire nature that is the driving force in the phlegmatic temperament. The desire for instant gratification is one way to look at it. The desire for pleasure is another. Why do today what can be put off until tomorrow? The native is driven to submit to his or her desires and requires outside help directing the life, i.e. usually a strong malefic. Otherwise the ever changing desires ruin the native.

Desire is quite a strong and active thing, really. Desire can make a person go out and violently take that which is desired, or not so violently fulfill the desire. Desire can also cause a different kind of action in driving a person to seduce from life's bed in order to attract the desired thing. The main point I want to make is that desire just is. It has helped humans reproduce better than any devised five-year plan.

You started with the general desire nature as phlegmatic's driving force and moved on to the specific desires of instant gratification and pleasure. Then you end up with an always-in-the-present orgy that prevents anything constructive from ever being accomplished.

Quote:
What the desires are will vary from native to native, but more often than not it will be a desire of the moment or the simple wish to "feel good." "The sixties aphorism, "If it feels good do it," is pure phlegm.
More often than not? There's the assumption that desires are bad, short-sighted and usually harmful. The link to the phlegmatic temperament is reiterated. This is moralization. Rather than seeing the phlegmatic temperament as part of a system of four temperaments it is judged as weak and faulty 'more often than not'.


And:
Quote:
Temperament is broad brush stuff. It is not fine finish work.

Choleric = warrior or athlete.
Melancholic = the farmer
Sanguine = the scholar
Phlegmatic = the slave (slave to the desires; can't put off gratification)

If temperament is not fine finish work, why do you give phlegmatic the extra specific touch? Warriors get to be warriors, farmers are down on the farm, scholars read and study, but your slaves are only bound to their desires and want to feel good NOW. More essentially and more truthfully slaves are bound to another person and do the hardest and most dangerous work. Slaves are for the gratification of others, not themselves. Slaves are indeed bound to a master, but using them to say that they are bound to their own desires is another example of moralization against one of the temperaments and avoiding the central core and contribution of the phlegmatic temperament.
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Tom
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Posted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I'm not advanced enough with temperament to enter into a discussion of it full of confidence, but I'll give it a shot anyway.

Your remarks about the phlegmatic type really bug me. Laughing Not because they aren't flattering, but rather because they seem to be merely judgments and moralizations against certain traits and behavior that indeed could stem from the phlegmatic type, but aren't at its core. You've described exaggerated extreme behavior of the type, the kind of criticisms cholerics would make in annoyance and impatience about phlegmatics.

What is missing is a 'heart-of-the-matter' concise definition or description of the phlegmatic temperament, a neutral statement.


I'll try to get back to the rest of your post later, but I want you to know that I think you have a point. And on the personal side, I have a strong phlegmatic streak myself and find what I've written to be uncomfortable. Sometimes the truth is uncomfortable. I do think that pointing out that it is difficult to direct the phlegmatic temperament is about as neutral is it is going to get.

I also want to admit here and now that the approach I take to temperament is not easily expressed and I usually don't have a hard time find the words I need to express things. This is no one's fault but mine. I think that this problem goes to the heart of the matter that you mentioned. More on that later.

One thing I wish to get out right now is that these definitions (they're not mine nor are they original with me) are not intended to be universal and the last word. Most importantly: they are the first word. They are what is underneath everything else. The temperament is the beginning of the delineation, not the end. It is simply not true that phlegmatics are doomed to a life of self-indulgence and that absolutely everything they do is unproductive, any more than it is true that cholerics and sanguines are destined only for success. Ted Bundy was choleric, and an occasional self-indulgence never hurt anyone. The point in finding the temperament is to try to pinpoint these roots of behavior and work with them. Janis Joplin and Joni Mitchell are strong phlegmatics. Joplin couldn't get past it for very long. Mitchell led a very productive life and still does. She has problems; we all do. When I think I"m uncomfortable describing my phlegmatic streak, I think how uncomfortable it must be to have your life, failings and all, dragged all over the internet.

The phlegmatic temperament gets the short end of the stick in many ways. It gets the worst press in the old texts. In a lecture Dorian Greenbaum summed this up perfectly when she said that the texts all say "Fire is good and everything else pretty much sucks." That is an accurate summation of the texts. And she is predominantly phlegmatic according to her. Phlegmatic is the most difficult temperament to work with. If that is judgmental so be it. Frankly, I don't have too much of a problem with being judgmental. It helps keep us out of trouble sometimes. Some people just have a rougher go of life than others. If we can locate the source of the difficulty then find ways to work with it, we've accomplished something good.

Tom
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Papretis



Joined: 27 Feb 2005
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Posted: Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It should be easy to find some example charts of strong temperamental influence in AstroDatabank. I took first the sanguine temperament, because I’m a bit suspicious about labeling sanguines as the “thinkers” or scholars. It’s not my experience about the core of the sanguine temperament. I think the main point about it is the social skills – certain light, warm, engaging, charming quality. Let’s take a few examples:

1. Rudolph Valentino, a romantic movie hero from the 20’s, got very early Libra rising (of course we must be careful with the birth time here), the Moon was in Libra too and the ruler of the Moon, Venus – though an evening star and therefore phlegmatic herself – was in another Air sign, Gemini. The Sun was in Taurus, therefore the season was sanguine too. 7 out of 10 points to sanguine according to the Greenbaum system.

2. Then another screen lover, Omar Sharif had Libra is rising again, the Moon was again in Gemini and the Sun was in Aries so the season was sanguine. 6 points out of 10 to sanguine.

3. Gene Wilder, an American comedian had Gemini rising, the Moon in Aquarius, the ruler of the Moon Saturn in Aquarius too and the Sun was in Gemini. 7 points out of 10 to sanguine.

4. Gloria Swanson, an “epitome of Hollywood glamour” in the swinging 20’s, had Sagittarius rising ruled by sanguine Jupiter, the Moon in Libra, the ruler of the Moon Venus in Aquarius and the Sun in Aries. That gives 7 points out of 10 to the sanguine temperament.

5. Gary Grant, the “quintessential handsome sophisticated male movie star of Hollywood’s Golden Era”, says ADB. Libra rising, the ruler of Libra Venus as a morning star making it sanguine, the Moon in Aquarius and the ruler of the Moon Saturn as well in Aquarius. 7 points out of 10 to the sanguine temperament.

This is actually quite revealing! A few of the most famous Hollywood charmers all had a predominantly sanguine temperament. They were probably better known for their charm than intelligence.

Then to the controversial phlegmatic temperament.

1. Franz Schubert, an Austrian romantic composer who died young: Cancer rises, the Moon is the ruler and it’s in Pisces, the ruler of the Moon, Jupiter, is in Pisces too, the Sun is in Aquarius so the season is phlegmatic, and the lunar phase is the first one which I consider phlegmatic. Schubert was 100% phlegmatic. He was unable to keep a permanent job and was mostly supported by his friends. If I remember correctly, Schubert was a notoriously impractical person. We must admit that Schubert seems to have many of the traits given by Tom to phlegmatics. There is a lot of sensitivity but also certain childishness and depedency on other people.

2. Lord Byron, a romantic poet: Cancer rising, the ruler of Cancer the Moon in Cancer as well and the Sun in Aquarius indicating a phlegmatic season. 9 out of 10 points to the phlegmatic temperament. I quote ADB:

Quote:
Extremely handsome, he had almost as much fame for his outrageous sex life as for his great works of poetry. Literary historians write that nurse May Gray awoke "precocious passions" in Byron when he was only nine years old. Scarcely out of adolescence, he embarked on numerous liaisons with partners ranging from married women to a choir boy. "Byron's Letters and Journals" (1973-94) freely confides his most intimate feelings and experiences. The details of his sex life - a remarkably varied one, including homosexuality at school and after, much whoring and tupping of servant girls, an orgiastic interlude in Venice, incest with his half-sister, and numerous seductions and liaisons within his own social class - have all emerged in graphic detail. At his second and final departure from England, in 1816, he was a monster of vanity and appetite, with one possibly redeeming quality; he could write.

Ouch! Tom was right again.

3. Ross Perot, an American billionaire and super-achiever with considerable financial skills and expertise. Cancer rising, the Moon in Cancer, the first lunar phase – that gives 8 out of 10 points to the phlegmatic temperament. As Kirk wrote:

Quote:
Desire is quite a strong and active thing, really. Desire can make a person go out and violently take that which is desired, or not so violently fulfill the desire. Desire can also cause a different kind of action in driving a person to seduce from life's bed in order to attract the desired thing.


Note the difference between the sanguine and phlegmatic temperament: both have to do with relationships but while sanguines are more subtle and maybe just flirting with passion, phlegmatics are into the real thing, subtle or not. And that makes phlegmatics prone to addictions, to sex, to people, to drugs... as Tom wrote, it's not a very flattering truth, though.
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Tom
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Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2008 12:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kirk,

I'm going to try to implement a suggestion Andrew made on the mundane forum by keeping things (somewhat) short.

I am simply not getting the idea across. Yes I've picked extreme examples. They are the easiest to understand. I can't explain the basics of the phlegmatic type by introducing all possible combinations with the other temperaments all of which will have an effect. Nor can I get the idea across, if I change the delineations to make them more palatable to the modern ear.

The delineations are not original with me. I quoted Culpeper to make that point. I also noted that the idea of temperament is not politically correct and here is probably the crux of the problem. We all have strengths and weaknesses and pretending that our weaknesses are endearing or someone else's fault changes nothing. I didn't choose to discuss phlegmatics. This is what came up in the discussion. Billy brought up the phlegmatic type. We could easily done the same thing with cholerics or sanguines. I stuck with the phlegmatic because Billy rejected the accuracy of the assessment. I tried to show that it was accurate with the only information readily available to me. There is more to Joni Mitchell than her problems. It's just that those problems demonstrated the accuracy of the assessment, in my view. We could have just as easily discussed melancholics of sanguines.

I did not say or imply that everyone that is strongly phlegmatic is that way and can only be that way. I'm describing the temperament not an individual. When it came to individuals I pointed out those characteristics in their behavior that were consistent with the temperament because the accuracy of the assessment was denied and I felt it was valid, and tried to demonstrate it. I never said that was all there was to the individual. This is no different than referring to the "Aries Type" without implying that everyone with an Aries Sun or Aries rising is this way exclusively.

As for getting to the core: the temperament is the core. It is the basis. I'm trying to describe the foundation and I'm getting the impression some readers are looking at it as though I'm describing the finished building. The foundation is little more than a hole in the ground. When we see the hole, we cannot know what the finished product will be, but we can make a few deductions as to what it might be and what it is not, and what the building will look like if we put something here or there. A small, shallow foundation cannot result in a skyscraper, but it doesn't have to be a Cape Cod style house. There are options.

As I said in my previous post, the purpose in determining the temperament is to find out the primary motivations and then work with them. We've all seen talented people who do nothing with their talents. We've all seen less than talented people succeed wildly by their efforts. They directed their life with what they had. Temperament determines what needs to be directed and the rest of the chart tells us the best way to do that.

If we discover a significant amount of phlegm we might probe further and discover an admittedly lazy streak in the native. What is wrong with accepting the finding and working with it or around it in order to accomplish something positive? Ditto the short tempered choleric or excessively social sanguine? That is far better in my view than pretending it is something else and wondering why the native never grows or improves. Ross Perot's chart is a great example of a strong phlegmatic who chose to work with other things in his chart that channeled the phlegm into productive areas. The phlegm didn't change. It was what he did with it that mattered.

No one should take the delineations personally.

Tom
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###



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Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom,

Thanks for the replies. I think I'm having two problems: 1) Grasping the essential meanings of all four types, not just the phlegmatic, and 2) Seeing clearly when and to what degree a description of temperament is moving from the universal to a particular expression.


Quote:
In a lecture Dorian Greenbaum summed this up perfectly when she said that the texts all say "Fire is good and everything else pretty much sucks." That is an accurate summation of the texts.

There's no doubt that powerful judgments of preferred qualities have historically been built into the temperament system. Those judgments have seemingly rendered the system biased toward cultural standards and have very possibly caused it to become flawed enough to make it of limited use. This may be one instance of the traditional practitioners giving us a flawed practice that we should perhaps pass by and not use. It's something to consider, anyway.


Sari wrote:
Quote:
Note the difference between the sanguine and phlegmatic temperament: both have to do with relationships but while sanguines are more subtle and maybe just flirting with passion, phlegmatics are into the real thing, subtle or not. And that makes phlegmatics prone to addictions, to sex, to people, to drugs... as Tom wrote, it's not a very flattering truth, though.

I can't get past the idea of passion as hot. I would say passion and desire are related, passion being extreme desire. 'Burning with desire'. I don't see how we can associate the cold and wet phlegmatic temperament with such intense heat. Warm sanguine would seem more prone to hot passions.

Idea : Maybe we can link the phlegmatic with desire if we take desire to be more of an urge to bond with, unite with, take in (and become part of: wetness) rather than to simply take and have (remaining separate: dryness). I may be stating the obvious that has already been discussed by others, but I think it's helping me through this.

And then there's sex. I've never been very impressed with chatter of sex being a beautiful way of people coming together in sharing, etc. I've always thought it's more realistically seen as people getting their jollies. However, as we all know there are traditions – mostly eastern – of religious/spiritual sexual practices. So maybe here we are given something nice to say about the phlegmatic temperament. If it is indeed the urge to bond and unite then we can link the phlegmatic with spiritual desires and practices that emphasize becoming larger through connection. The East, where such practices are frequently found, is often considered more feminine than the West. Our judgmental Western male traditional astrologers maybe just couldn't quite grasp what it was all about, and strongly condemned the poor phlegmatic sot who deep down really just wanted to bond in some good temple sex. Confused
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Papretis



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Posted: Sat Nov 08, 2008 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kirk wrote:
I can't get past the idea of passion as hot. I would say passion and desire are related, passion being extreme desire. 'Burning with desire'. I don't see how we can associate the cold and wet phlegmatic temperament with such intense heat. Warm sanguine would seem more prone to hot passions.

Maybe “passion” is a bit misleading word. I’m thinking about water as the source of life. The scientists are seeking water from Mars to find out if it’s possible to find life in there (water = life). The foetus grows in amniotic fluid. You need fluids for a successful sexual encounter. The life got started in salty seas. In Finland women call a (usually older) man who shows his sexual desires too openly and in an inappropriate way with the word “limainen” (“phlegmy”).

In fact it seems that the phlegmatic type fits quite well with the Jungian Sensation type. The more I study charts, the more it seems that all the traditional temperaments fit with the Jungian types “like hand in glow”, but not in the way Jung or Greene thought. Melancholic charts embody the Thinking type with its strictness and need for control as we will see later. Probably sanguine is then the Feeling type and choleric is the Intuitive type.

According to the Greenbaum system, Barack Obama has quite evenly the other temperaments but he lacks phlegm. Could it indicate certain impersonal and “clinical” quality about him? To be phlegmatic is to be human. To be phlegmatic is to live life to the full and to make a few mistakes in the way. If you lack phlegm it’s admirable in many ways, but it may give you a certain robot-like, “too perfect”, "Dr. Spock" quality. Please don’t get me wrong when we are talking about the new president of the US, I was at least as happy and excited about the election of Obama as anyone in Europe.

Here are some melancholic charts:

1. Walt Disney: Virgo rising, the ruler of the Moon Venus in Capricorn, the Sun in Sagittarius and the last (melancholic) lunar phase gives 6 points out of 10. ADB says about him:

Quote:
Though the world cherished the myth of Disney as a kindly, happy storyteller, the truth is that he was "a tall, somber man who appeared to be under the lash of some private demon." With no particular sense of humor, he was, in fact, withdrawn, suspicious and controlling.

2. Rudolf Bing, the General Manager of the Metropolitan Opera House: Capricorn rising, melancholic Saturn as the ruler, the Moon in Capricorn, its ruler Saturn in Capricorn and the last lunar phase: that gives 8 points out of 10. Quoting ADB:

Quote:
Acknowledging that he ran the Met as a dictatorship, Bing thrived on his 14-hour-a-day job, one of the most responsible, hazardous, complicated and controversial posts in the operatic world. (---) Ascetic and acerbic, he was known for his sharp, no-nonsense verbal playing of superstars.

3. Harold Pinter, one of the best known dramatists of the 50s: Capricorn rising, Saturn as the ruler, the Sun in Libra (indicating the melancholic season) and the Moon in Taurus give 8 points out of 10 to the melancholic temperament. Quoting ADB:

Quote:
Pinter’s works were complex, challenging and noted for their use of understatement.

4. Frederico Fellini, on Italian movie director: Virgo rising, the Moon in Capricorn, the ruler of the Moon, Saturn in Virgo and the last lunar phase give 6 points out of 10 to the melancholic temperament. ADB says:

Quote:
He thrived on chaos and confusion, and his films are noted for being weird, strange and exaggerated.

5. Josemaria Escriva de Balaquer, the founder of Opus Dei, a Catholic sect in Spain: Virgo rising, the ruler Mercury as the evening star making it melancholic, the Moon in Capricorn and the ruler of the Moon, Saturn in Capricorn too – that gives 7 points out of 10 to the melancholic temperament.

The common themes would seem to be control and seriousness but also artistic and philosophical gifts. I quote again Jung about the Extraverted Thinking type in Psychological Types:

Quote:
This type of man elevates objective reality, or an objectively oriented intellectual formula, into the ruling principle not only for himself but for his whole environment. By this formula good and evil are measured, and beauty and ugliness determined. Everything that agrees with this formula is right, everything that contradicts it is wrong, and anything that passes by it indifferently is merely incidental. Because this formula seems to embody the entire meaning of life, it is made into a universal law which must be put into effect everywhere all the time, both individually and collectively. Just as the extraverted thinking type subordinates himself to his formula, so, for their own good, everybody round him must obey it too, for whoever refuses to obey it is wrong – he is resisting the universal law, and is therefore unreasonable, immoral, and without a conscience.

In this sense it’s not surprising that General Patton had a predominantly melancholic temperament. That indicates discipline and the realistic attitude needed in a military career. Melancholy makes others to take you seriously. If you lack melancholy, people see you as a turncoat, suggesting this today and suggesting that tomorrow. Others may think that you lack depth and principles.
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Posted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paperitis hit on something very important: the lack of an element in the make-up is as important as the dominant make up. If we have a dominant phlegmatic with no melancholy, then we have a truly undisciplined nature. If we have a dominant phlegmatic with a melancholic streak, it can overcome a lack of discipline the phlegm implies.

Once we get to the individual we see how the humors manifest. But we need to see the humors as they are in their "pure" form in order to blend them and make some sense of how they works.

I just received a copy of the 1995 biography Patton: A Genius for War. It is said to be the most complete biography of the man, published in 1995 the 50th anniversary of his death. The author, Carlo D'Este, spends quite a bit of time on Patton's youth and his WWI experiences, a period many biographers skim over. This will, I think, give me a better insight into how his temperament played out.

In the very beginning of the book D'Este points out that for almost any American born after WW II the image that comes to mind when they hear the name "Patton" is George C. Scott standing in front of a huge American flag speaking to the troops. He also points out that the motion picture Patton had as its technical advisor General Omar Bradly, a man who despised George Patton. Much of what that movie shows us is Bradley's jaundiced viewpoint. There is much more to the man and I hope to demonstrate that with his chart.

Tom
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yuzuru



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Posted: Sun Nov 09, 2008 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Our judgmental Western male traditional astrologers maybe just couldn't quite grasp what it was all about, and strongly condemned the poor phlegmatic sot who deep down really just wanted to bond in some good temple sex. Confused


I remember Frawley saying that Sex is a good way to warm a really cool temperament !
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mattG



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Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2008 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some time back in this thread Tom said that no one starts with traditional astrology. Well apart from Linda Goodman the first book I bought was CA and if you can handle the Olde English it is an introductory book.

When I read about Fellini thriving on chaos I was reminded about someone who was trying to find what good managers have in common.The quality they looked for was an ability to manage well both in routine times and when it all started going haywire.They dropped the research when it was pointed out that best examples were Sun in Capricorn.

I am really enjoying this debate.Maybe it is because I am choleric and melancholic.

Matt
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Papretis



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Posted: Mon Nov 10, 2008 12:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tom wrote:
I just received a copy of the 1995 biography Patton: A Genius for War. It is said to be the most complete biography of the man, published in 1995 the 50th anniversary of his death. The author, Carlo D'Este, spends quite a bit of time on Patton's youth and his WWI experiences, a period many biographers skim over. This will, I think, give me a better insight into how his temperament played out.

Tom, if you get any additional insights about General Patton from the book, please share them with us.
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