Transits, progressions, and lesser-known predictive techniques such as Saros cycles and Return charts are explored. In Predictive Astrology: The Eagle and the Lark , an illuminating chapter dedicated to transits offers students of astrology tools to help personalize the meanings of transits in individual lives. Another chapter is dedicated to secondary progressions. Brady devotes a chapter to Time Maps, a tool that helps astrologers put the pieces of predictive work together. This book is outstanding for its clarity.
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By Bernadette Brady. To write a book takes a large amount of support, encouragement and patience. For providing this, as well as endless editing, my deep thanks go to Darrelyn Gunzburg. Once upon a time there was a lark who was renowned for her beautiful singing. Her song was judged by all who heard her to be the sweetest sound on earth. From dawn to dusk she would sing her song and as she sang, the beginnings of a desire grew.
The desire was to sing for the gods. She realized that if she could fly high enough the gods would be able to hear her. So the lark leapt into the air and flew as high as she could, but her wings tired and although she sang, she knew that the gods could not hear her.
Determined now more than ever, she decided that she would climb the highest mountain and then fly from the peak. But even this could not get her high enough to be heard in heaven.
One day she saw an eagle soaring high in the sky, far higher then she had ever flown and she knew with unbounded certainty that if she could fly as high as the eagle, the gods would hear her beautiful song.
So she watched the eagle and when he landed, she approached the huge bird. The small but brave lark explained her dilemma to the great eagle and asked if he would carry her on his back so that, together, they could entertain the gods. Now the eagle was aware of the gods because he could fly in their domain and yet, ashamed of his raucous voice, he never had the courage to contact them. Eagerly he agreed to carry the tiny lark.
Tentatively she climbed onto his back and with a stretch and a flap of his mighty wings, he set aloft. Higher and higher they soared. The lark was almost too scared to look down and yet onward still they flew.
The lark had never been this high. She could see the whole world spread out beneath her. And then, all of a sudden, they were there. The tiny lark knew that now it was her turn, the eagle having done his part. Firmly she stood up on the eagle's back and, filling her lungs with air, began to sing. Heaven was filled with her glorious music. The gods were astonished at the power of the eagle and enthralled by the beauty of the lark's song. The eagle was no longer ashamed and the lark was filled with joy.
Together, as a team, they had brought music to the gods. Since time began, the human race has quested the future. Whether it be the knowledge of a successful hunt, the weather patterns, the movement of the enemy or the outcome of a journey, to know the future was to have an advantage.
This need was so great that every tribe or clan had its own seer, sage, shaman or priest. This person's role was to explain the unexplainable and give meanings and patterns to seemingly random events, thereby reducing fear and creating greater stability.
If the tribe's seer died, then the tribe would find or project these skills onto another individual. The human race has come along way since those first early scratchings on cave walls.
But the need for the seer has not changed. In our modern world there is still the unexplained, the uncertain future and the need in the community for some individuals to see ahead of time. So the modern community seeks out individuals who, willingly or unwillingly, will take on the role of the seer. There are many pathways which lend themselves to the ancient projection of seership.
Scientists predicting outcomes, the bureau of meteorology predicting weather, election forecasters predicting results, and the economists predicting the economy are seers on the side of the establishment. Clairvoyants, psychics, tarot readers, numerologists, tealeaf readers and astrologers are, in the public's eye, the seers of the non-establishment.
Thus as we decide to study astrology to fulfill our own needs, all too often, within a few weeks of commencing study, the student's friends will not only want to know about themselves but also want the student to be their seer.
The student's personal quest for truth and meaning in life thus becomes burdened by the community's ancient longing for a seer. Predictive work in astrology is also enmeshed with the collective's need for mystery, wonder and spirituality.
So as astrologers we find that the pathway to predictive astrology, which begins as a personal quest for knowledge, turns into this minefield of other people's expectations. In order to negotiate a clearer path through this minefield astrologers have put a great deal of energy into developing new predictive techniques, and in a striving to fulfil the needs of the community we keep trying to build a better, and therefore, safer wheel.
But herein lies the paradox: for if predictive astrology is a quest, then it will unconsciously be considered unreachable, for it is in the nature of a quest that it should not be achieved too easily. In addition the projection of seer can also be so overpowering that no sane individual would want to carry it.
So astrologers can, like Jason of Argonaut fame, constantly seek, without recognizing what they have already achieved, and place predictive astrology so high above them that, no matter how hard they try, it cannot possibly be obtained. Thus the first point to be made in pursuit of reliable predictive astrology is: Recognize that you can already predict using astrology and how impressive this is to a lay person.
For example, if you know that a person is going to have transiting Pluto conjunct the natal Ascendant at a given time, then as an astrologer you would expect some event to occur in that person's life. If you know no more than that, your prediction to the lay person seems amazing.
In addition, provided the birth time is correct, you can do this with a high level of accuracy. Acknowledgement of such simple feats in astrology, considered awe-inspiring by the general public, allows predictive work to be taken down from its pedestal. By recognizing the simplicity of these skills and how easily they can be taught to another, the minefield of projection becomes a little less dangerous.
However, this minefield can still exist and faced with this difficulty astrologers have three possible paths that they can follow: the first is to abandon the whole issue and firmly announce that predictive work cannot be done. This is not really an option but an external appearance adopted to push back the community's need for a seer. The second approach is through new methods and techniques such as high-powered computing, micro-aspecting and employing the ultimate in precision calculations.
Reams of data are produced with this approach, and astrologers are swamped by the numerous echoes of the same information rearranged in an infinite number of mathematical ways.
The average astrologer, confronted with this approach, perceives that the journey lies through a mathematical maze of confusion. The third approach is one of intuition. These astrologers abandon mathematical techniques and, without any real understanding of the tools that they are using, leap into the deep end and go-by-what-feels-right.
The difficulty with this approach is that it cannot be taught, explained or repeated and students following this example can find themselves in an empty void of vagueness and disillusion. Neither of the last two approaches is in error. The problem occurs when they are used exclusively.
For astrology is both an art and a science and has to have both components in balance for the best possible results. So an astrologer's intuition is like the tiny lark in the fable and the techniques and methodology of an astrologer's craft, the mighty eagle.
Separately they are both valid and valuable. Together they can achieve results before unreachable. The next step is to recognize when and how to use intuition. What is the point of intuitively draining your metaphysical batteries to reach a conclusion that could have been logically derived? Far better to sing with your intuition after logic has gone as far as it can go. The boundaries between eagle and lark must be observed and each one used in its proper time and place.
Too often one sees eagles balancing on the backs of squashed larks as astrologers derive immense volumes of data from confused or misunderstood origins. Similarly, if astrologers are not clear on what they have predicted via techniques and what they have predicted via intuitive leaps, then it is very difficult to know where they may have gone wrong and how to correct it.
This book is about the eagle, its strength and weakness, and where he can go wrong. It is about the lark and when to let her sing. The first step in the successful use of the eagle is to understand the nature of the beast. Thus it is important to acknowledge that the origins of astrology are in the world of science. Indeed it is the original science and its metaphysical doorways are reached through corridors of mathematics and astronomy.
In other words, an understanding of number-crunching and the logic of the techniques used are needed by the astrologer. It is easy in this computerized world to push a few buttons, get a horoscope printed out and let intuition flow, bypassing all the problems of learning how to calculate charts, progressions, returns, and so on. What flows, of course, is the song of the lark and if the song is beautiful, what a shame that it's sung from the ground rather than from the back of an eagle.
There is an old rule and a valid one: You only get out of something what you put in. Astrology is based on science and calculations and it seems, from my experience, that unless you are prepared to do your apprenticeship and learn the basis of the craft, the doors that astrology can open remain closed.
The lark may sing but it has no way of reaching the gods. Once you sort out the values of, and boundaries between, technique and intuition, you will be taking the first step towards predictive astrology. Then, with eagle under one arm and lark under the other, you will find yourself looking straight into the face of fate.
If we can read the dynamic patterns of a birth chart to give the timing and descriptions of future events, then we must not only acknowledge some master plan to which the individual is subject but also realize it is the very raw material with which we are working. For as astrologers we work with fate, just as a cobbler works with leather and a blacksmith works with metals.
Therefore, like any other trade or craft, we need to understand the raw materials of our trade in order to produce results. A blacksmith, in making a horse shoe, does not expect to produce a pound of butter for the simple reason that it is not within the capabilities of the raw material.
So what are the limitations of our raw material? What can it do? What can't it do? How much of a person's life is dictated by fate? Just as the blacksmith has to know the metal's limitations, the astrologer needs to know about fate's limitations. These how much, how often, type questions do not have easy answers but for the predictive astrologer they cannot be avoided.
Astrologers can only work with the part of an individual that is subject to fate. Thus the accuracy of any prediction is limited by the amount of involvement the individual has with fate.
Predictive Astrology: The Eagle and the Lark
Every language has an alphabet and predictive astrology is no different. What the astrologer is trying to do in formulating a prediction is to take the language of the Cosmos and translate that information into the conscious world of the client. The way in which we produce this information from the Cosmos is via the predictive system we use; i. However, no matter what system you used, there is one common thread and that is the definition of the basic units or alphabet with which the language or data is written.
Predictive Astrology : The Eagle and the Lark