AstroFaces and Culpeper

Click to watch video!

According to the Astrofaces introduction:

Astrofaces is a research study seeking to verify Astrology for modern science with photographs of subjects grouped by the zodiac signs of their Sun, Moon & Ascendant. Do people who share the three most prominent factors in the chart resemble each other?

It’s an intriguing study but so far the findings have been limited by the variability of photos and the current state of FRS, facial recognition software. Click the following link to read more and also to add your birth data and a photograph. Here is the LINK: Astrofaces.com

You may have read Sun Sign astrology books that discuss physical characteristics of people of certain Sun Signs. Like the rest of this type of astrology this is an oversimplification. Astrofaces is one project that attempts to rectify this by adding the Big Three or Sun, Moon and Ascendant and below I have an except from Nicholas Culpeper, 1616-1654, who like other traditional astrologers attributed one’s looks to the Ascendant or rising sign and its ruler. By Astrofaces I’d be a combo of Cancer, Gemini and Scorpio and by Culpeper I’d be Mercury, but fixed, with some Sun and Venus because I have a Gemini ASC and my Mercury, the ruler of Gemini is in Scorpio, (a fixed sign) conjunct the Sun and Venus, square Mars and all under the horizon. How about you? Read below and let me know…

Portrait_of_Nicholas_Culpeper_Wellcome_L0014459Traditional astrology attributes one’s looks to the Ascendant or rising sign and its ruler and also to any planets that conjunct it closely. Here is what Culpeper, wrote in his Opus Astrologicum about a person’s physical appearance based on the rising sign, ‘By comparing the Planet with the sign he is in, the description of the body is found out.’ Also, ‘by considering the strength of the Planet, his aspect to the Sun or Moon, his being with fixed Stars, either of, or opposing his own nature, with his being above of under the earth. For Planets, when they are above the earth, give far taller stature then they do when they are under the earth.’ One can see he is addressing basic concepts of dignity and sect. He continues with triplicities and more but the pdf (see link) is hard enough to read these in…  in general descriptions of the Planetes, he says,

The Sun presents one of a brown or yellowish colour, and forehead, great hazle eyes, sharp and piercing, quick-sighted; of no great stature, yet fleshie, and full-boned: he hath a long beard, and is quickly bald, a generous creature, high-minded, aiming at no base or mean things.

The Moon declares one with a pale and whitely face, mixed with but a little redness, if any: of mean stature, proud, of an auburn hair, flowe of speech, fat and flegmatick; short arms, fleshly hands of a mutable condition, often removing from place to place; a wearish peevish creature, seldom contented; neither delighting much in action nor idleness.

Saturn signifies a man with a black swarthy colour, big and large eye-brows, black and little eyes, thin beard, and sometimes none at all; thick shoulders, and sometimes crooked; heavie impish looks, tall stature: he goes with his head stooping forward: lean face, thick lips: he delights to be alone, and is always musing: he hits one leg against the other as he goes: he can hide his anger, and his tongue will tell no tales of his heart: willful, envious, malicious, fearful, proud, and slovenly; covetous, aiming wholly at his own ends.

Jupiter represents a man tall of stature, of a brown muddy complexion, an oval visage, high forehead, fair gray eyes, light brown hair, a handsome well-set strait body, large belly, great thighs, great well-proportioned legs, long feet, a sober, well-spoken, well-conditioned man, desiring to benefit all men; not covetous, nor caring for the goods of this world.

Mars describes one of an high colour, slender, yet strong, and well-set; a round sun-burnt face: his hair yellow or [flaxen]; hazle eyes, quick, sharp and piercing; furious looks; proud, presumptuous, valiant, full of words, boasting and lying.

Under Venus are born people of a whitely-brown colour and complexion; black and quick eyes, little eye-brows, red lips, cherry cheeks with little dimples in them; the [lower] lip somewhat bigger then the upper; a neat, well-composed, and well-ordered body; strait, but of mean stature, affable, courteous, merry, wholly delighting in curiosities.

Lastly, Mercury gives a creature of a tall stature, black hair, long lean face, high forehead, long strait nose, lean lank body; long fingers, and lean; long feet; and he goes swinging one arm; a witty subtil man, full of talk, and of no great fidelity, unless Mercury be in a fixed signe.

Here is a link to Opus Astrologicum

This is a bio of Culpeper from Skyscript
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When does the Sun actually change Signs?

ecliptic2
pic from http://www.astrologyclub.org

Have you noticed that the Solstices occur on a different day each time and that the beginning and ending dates for zodiac signs are different depending on which book you read?  Did you wonder why one year Cancer begins on the 21st and the next on the 22nd? This is because both solstices and sun signs relate to the Sun’s path along the ecliptic and the Sun doesn’t change from one sign to another at exactly midnight. See Kelly’s article below for a table that shows this better. These variable dates can be a concern if you are born on one of those days when the Sun is changed signs, sometimes you’ll hear it referred to as a cusp and people will say you aren’t really one or the other but that isn’t true. The Sun moves through all 30 degrees of one sign before passing into the next so even if you are born close to a boundary you’ll be either 29 degrees Cancer or even 0 degrees Leo. 0 degrees Leo is still Leo and an astrologer can easily look up your date in an ephemeris and tell which on side of the cusp you fall. Or you can check your own using the ephemeris links below.

Here is an Ephemeris to check your own birth date: Link Astro.com, Swiss Ephemeris Files 

Here is a good article in which Kelly Surtees shows why these cusp dates may look confusing. Link: Kelly’s Astrology – Sun Changing Sign, Dates for 2015

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Welcome Autumn!

zodiac_signs_28318_lgSeptember 21st is the Autumnal Equinox: The day the Sun enters Libra and the beginning of Autumn. In the same way that the Solstice marks the days of longest and shortest “light,” the Equinoxes mark the day of equal light. Nox is the Roman goddess of night so equinox literally means “equal night.” The glyph for Libra represents the setting sun expressing the balance between night and day. In traditional Astrology, the Sun is “exalted” in Aries while halfway through its circuit along the ecliptic, it is in “fall” in Libra, Aries’ opposite sign.

The rising of the constellation Libra marked the beginning of the New Year in ancient Egypt. Equinoxes are the two points in the year (March 19-21 and September 21-23) when the Sun crosses the celestial equator. At these times, day and night in Northern and Southern hemispheres are of equal length. The Spring (vernal) Equinox occurs midway between the Winter and Summer solstices; the Autumnal Equinox occurs midway between the Summer and Winter solstices. The Autumn equinoctial festival of Mabon mirrors the spring equinoctial festival of Oestara with the Light and Dark forces of the Universe switching ascendancy.

In myth, the goddess Persephone departs the earth to join her husband in the underworld. It is time to give thanks for the summer and to welcome the impending dark. Traditionally, this is when some of the heaviest work of the agricultural year begins. The harvest is stored away, the farm animals are measured against their feed and decisions are made about how many to keep and how many to slaughter and eat. This is why so much Thanksgiving feasting goes on now. Fresh meat and fruit only last so long.

Symbols of Autumn:

Blackberries, cranberries, wine, gourds, pinecones, acorns, nuts, corn, apples, pomegranates, ivy

Foods of Autumn:

Breads, nuts, apples, squash, pomegranates, and pumpkin pie.

Colors of Autumn:

The colors of the sunset: violet, orange, russet, maroon, brown, and gold.

Stones of Autumn:

Libra is pink tourmaline, opals and rhodochrosite. Scorpio is topaz, bloodstone, and yellow agate. Sagittarius is turquoise and jasper.

Activities of Autumn:

Making cider and wine, gathering seeds and seedpods, walking in the woods, Halloween, and Thanksgiving celebrations, Christmas shopping.


Moganshan_4871

photo: wikipedia

This is the Year of the Wood Horse

And just in time to celebrate… here is a free lecture from The Teaching Company.

You know how much I love history… and The Teaching Company. This one’s part of the course, Foundations of Eastern Civilization, by Dr. Craig G. Benjamin, Associate Professor of History in the Frederik Meijer Honors College at Grand Valley State University in Michigan. In this lecture, you will:

  • look at the political rebellions that led to today’s republic,
  • meet Mao Zedong, Sun Yatsen, and Chiang Kai-shek,
  • and witness conflict between Nationalist and Communist parties.

Click to listen: Teaching Company Free Lecture

Click to learn about the course: Foundations of Eastern Civilization

Click to learn more about the Chinese Zodiac

Click here for other element Horse years

Check out my flashcards | Quizlet

I set up some flashcards on Quizlet. You can use them to study or to test yourself.

Astrological Dignities

Tarot: Minor Arcana: Golden Dawn correspondences

Some characters from Greco-Roman Mythology

Please let me know if you find any booboos!

Mythology Monday – Olympians and Olympics

The gods of Olympus, after whom the Solar Syst...

The Olympians:

Spending the first weekend of the Olympics in Olympia was a fun coincidence.  According to Greek Mythology, the Olympian gods are Hermes, Artemis, Hephaestus, Aphrodite, Zeus, Hera, Apollo, Ares, Athena, Poseidon, Hestia and Demeter. Hades was not usually included in lists although he is a brother of Zeus and Poseidon, etc. The Olympians are second generation gods who took over the earth, sky, ocean and underworld after defeating the Titans. The term “Olympian” refers to Mt Olympus. Each god has their own home, made by Hephaestus, the smith-god, but  Mt Olympus is where they hold court. The Milky Way is called the road to Olympus. It bisects the ecliptic, or path of the Sun, which includes the constellations associated with the god’s homes, the Zodiac. Continue reading “Mythology Monday – Olympians and Olympics”

Pet Sun Signs

I believe Astrology is the best way to learn about yourself and those close to you. While Sun sign astrology can describe one aspect of a person, detailed astrological insight requires accurate birth data in order include their desires, learning style and motivations. Think about what this kind of insight could provide you about your pets…

What kind of issues will they be likely to have?
How can you motivate them?
How nervous will they be about new experiences?

You can answer these questions about your pets by studying about their Sun Signs.

Continue reading “Pet Sun Signs”

Kindle Love!

I always loved the aesthetics of a book, the bindings and covers, the quality paper, printed fonts, the whole package. I never thought I would prefer an e-reader over a book, but I do.

Let me list some of the benefits of the kindle:

It is small enough to read in bed and still “turn pages” one-handed.

I can carry 100+ books with me at all times.

My bookmarks don’t fall out and get lost.

I don’t end up using important bills, photos or tickets as bookmarks.

I like to take notes when I read and the kindle allows me to annotate and highlight digitally. The best part is that I can then download my notes and highlights directly from the kindle into a text file on my pc.

Makes packing for a trip easier, and lighter. Really, what is the hardest part of packing for a trip? Making sure you squeeze enough books into your suitcase, right? I mean now I only need to bring one or two print-books  just in case the kindle and my pc simultaneously malfunction or the plane crashes and I am marooned on an island.

I can play Panda Poet on it.

The battery lasts forever.

The range of available books is incredible. I have archaeology, anthropology, astronomy, nutrition, running, ethnography and even some fiction on mine.

Public domain books are available for free.

If one was so inclined, Kindle can be accessorized with skins, covers etc.

I love my kindle!

Happy New Year!

I’ve been out of touch a long time and I have a lot to catch you up on. I am listing events in order of chronology rather than importance, and as always, not using anyone else’s names in case they don’t want to be google-able.

October: I started a Masters Program at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David. The degree is Cultural Astronomy and Astrology. Cultural Astronomy is a newish term for the fields of Archaeoastronomy and Ethnoastronomy. In plain English, the exploration of all the ways mankind relates to the sky. The program site says, “We define Cultural Astronomy as the ‘study of the application of beliefs about the stars to all aspects of human culture, from religion and science to the arts and literature. It includes the new discipline of archaeoastronomy – the study of astronomical alignments, orientation and symbolism in architecture, ancient and modern”.

My study buddy from Kepler started with me and I met lots of new people through our meetings online. Then, my dad had a medical procedure and I was able to use it as an excuse to see him for his birthday. He came through the ordeal in fantastic shape and it was great to see the St Louis contingent, especially while the weather was nice. We went to one of my favorite sites, Daniel Boone’s home. The house and land are just beautiful and the tour is always good.

November: By the time I came home from St Louis, Mom was feeling really poorly so I flew down to Orlando. She decided not to undertake more invasive chemotherapy and had been referred to hospice. We had a really good week and thanks to our great petsitter, Scott was able to spend some quality time with her as well. Her condition declined rapidly after that. The hospice nurse came by every few days and mom’s friends stopped by to sit with her, bring me coffee and give me breaks. She passed comfortably the evening before Thanksgiving. Many friends came by that evening and we ended up having an impromptu memorial for her and with her. She had an extensive network of friends and it was great hearing all of their stories. Scott collected some great pictures of her and put them on Facebook. I can’t link to them here so I’ll make a separate page for them later on.

Scott flew down again to help me with her affairs and two of her friends insisted we take some time off. One gave us a pass to Disney and we had a wonderful time at Epcot. Mom always enjoyed Disney. She was a serious a roller coaster fan. In fact, the first time she and I went, we rode every roller coaster in the park and the runaway mine car twice.  Another of her friends knew that she had wanted to see Harry Potter at Universal with us, so he made sure we were able to see The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. It was fantastic! We both agreed that the Hogwarts castle ride was the best either of us had ever been on! Mom would have loved it.

December: Scott and I flew home to Seattle and spent some time trying to adjust to life at home and without mom, and of course, work on my paper for the semester. I think Robby thought I was never coming home because he would not leave my side for days. My professor gave me an extension until the day after Christmas. Ironically, he was also my professor at Kepler College in ’07 when Mom was first diagnosed as terminal. There were six topics to choose from and I chose “Is Myth a Primitive Superstition?” Somehow, Word and Endnote, my citation software,  disagreed over who had more control of my document. Word won and actually disabled the link between them. This resulted in Word deleting my current paper and “recovering” a previous version of it. It took Scott a day and a half to get the problem tracked down and software reinstalled and a more correct version of the paper recovered, proving, once again, that in-home IT is essential. I checked in with my Kepler study buddy to find out how her paper was going and found out she had dropped out! ACK! Shock, betrayal, all that stuff… I didn’t even call her back for 2 weeks! Sorry, babe, I’ve recovered now. I am happy with how the paper turned out and although I am not posting it here, if you’d like to read it, just email me!

Well, that is my report for the last quarter of 2010. I am looking forward to 2011 and to the start of next term in February, Research Methods: Ethnography and Fieldwork, and I have found a new study buddy who actually lives nearby. I just hope Research methods doesn’t overlap too much with BA level statistics because I barely survived all that math.

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