The Building of the Temple:
Astrology and the Meaning of Number
Rev. Pam Crane
Published in CAO TIMES 1978
The meaning of Number has been the study of many scholars throughout man's history. I have read only a little of their work; it is as the foundation of the significance of astrology that Number most occupied my mind.
Accordingly, this contribution to the literature is based on astrology itself; I make no apology for attempting an analysis of the meaning of numbers that is founded on a system dependent for its own meaning on numerical principles, since our experienced universe is so full of circularities that I see no reason to assume that their presence is inevitable proof of fallacy. Astrology, of all disciplines, relies on this interdependence of meaning for its very structure and life.
The introduction into astrology of the use of harmonic analysis (chiefly through the work of John Addey here in England) has tremendously extended the astrologer's equipment for understanding. It has also re-emphasised the underlying simplicity of our complex ideas. To understand Number is to comprehend the significance of relationships illumined by harmonics in the natal pattern. It would seem from the following simple analysis that the reverse is also true - to clarify the astrological nature of each harmonic sheds light on the meaning of its own number.
The key to the significance of each harmonic and its number is found in the sequence of Signs as they come into focus through the harmonic series from the 1st to the 12th; generated from the point 0° Aries.
2 Aries - Libra
3 Aries - Leo - Sagittarius
4 Aries - Cancer - Libra - Capricorn
5 Aries - Gemini - Leo - Scorpio - Capricorn
6 Aries - Gemini - Leo - Libra - Sagittarius - Aquarius
7 Aries - Taurus - Cancer - Virgo - Libra- Sagittarius - Aquarius
8 Aries - Taurus - Cancer - Leo - Libra - Scorpio - Capricorn - Aquarius
9 Aries - Taurus - Gemini - Leo - Virgo - Libra - Sagittarius - Capricorn - Aquarius
10 Aries - Taurus - Gemini - Cancer - Leo - Libra - Scorpio - Sag - Capricorn - Aquarius
11 Aries - Taurus - Gemini - Cancer - Leo - Virgo - Libra - Scorpio - Sag - Cap - Aquarius
12 Aries - Taurus - Gemini - Cancer - Leo - Virgo - Libra - Scorpio - Sag - Cap - Aqu - Pisces
In the above table, the Signs are in bold as they each make their first appearance.
By the 7th harmonic, all the Signs have been accounted for with the single exception of Pisces, which finally completes the series in the twelfth harmonic. The accompanying diagrams will make the relationships of the Signs with the harmonics clearer.
1. ONE. That which in harmonic astrology is known as the First Harmonic comprises the whole circle: 0° Aries is both the Alpha and the Omega point - a concept of selfhood which is attributed to Divinity. Taken simply as a single point on the circle, we can understand Oneness as the seed of being, a singularity with no reference to any identity beyond itself, or any direction beyond its unique place. It represents a point of initial existence which is both a triumph over nothingness and the most extreme limitation of being; there is both pure assertion of self and acute lack of extension beyond the self. Yet there is the potential for either remaining locked in the seed-self, or encompassing the totality of the twelve Signs that lie between this point as 0° Aries and the same point as 30° Pisces. There is a similar symbol of beginning and completion here in the point on the circle as there is in the Solar symbol of the point within the circle. If only for this reason, the exaltation of the Sun in Aries is not inapt; but in Oneness, in Aries, the circumference is emphasised rather than the centre, that which is generated by the spirit and the heart, and which encloses them, rather than the spirit and heart themselves, an unmated, assertive energy expressed through. Mars.
ONE can therefore be understood in terms of Manifestation and Selfhood.
2. TWO. The Second Harmonic sets up a wave with two peaks only - at 0° Aries and 0°Libra. These two points of focus on the circle are directly opposite each other. The first contact that Self in Aries has made the Universe beyond him is with Libra, the Other. The 7th Sign has entered with the 2nd harmonic. It is the sign of Venus; and 2 is also associated with Taurus, the 2nd sign, also ruled by Venus. The 7th sign/2nd harmonic and the 2nd sign both therefore describe relationship - but the nature of this relationship is substantially different in each case. Here, there is direct confrontation with the Aries/1 Identity. Whereas adjacent signs are greatly dissimilar and constitute an ultimate complement to each other, the polarity expressed in 1/7, Aries/Libra, offers contrast in kinship; the opposing signs must both be either Cardinal, Fixed, or Mutable - so the fundamental behaviour-pattern is the same for each; both must be either Positive or Negative in expression - so the direction of energy, whether Projective or Assimilative, is the same.
The difference, the contrast, lies in the planetary nature of the signs in opposition - the archetype Aries/Libra presenting Mars with Venus, assertion with acknowledgement, male with female (Adam with his Eve), energy with relaxation, war with peace, speed with stillness, sharpness with softness, wound with salve, rough with smooth, angle with curve. Because the manner and direction of behaviour are similar it is possible for 'I' to identify with 'Other', and to become it - yet the contrast teases; the Other is what the I is. not, and challenges him to conquer or absorb that difference. If this is successful, there is intimacy of mating; if unsuccessful, the challenge of confrontation may lead to antagonism and battle. Here Love and Hatred meet. The challenge may more abstractly represent opportunity, a chance to test the other sides of the nature.
TWO can therefore be understood in terms of Polarity, 'Otherness', Confrontation.
3. THREE. The peaks of the third harmonic wave from 0° Aries fall at Leo and Sagittarius, the fifth and ninth signs, associated respectively with the Sun and Jupiter. This is an especially stellar harmonic in the true sense of the word; the Sun is both ruler of Leo and exalted, traditionally and aptly, in Aries, and is our parent star, while Jupiter is the most star-like of all the neighbour planets (emitting radiation and governing its own system of satellites) and Sagittarius leads the human eye into the heart of the home galaxy. One element only of the four is active here, and this is Fire. The quality found in the third harmonic is essentially subjective, and projective: the self, initiated in Aries, establishes and perpetuates its identity in Leo through the things and people it enjoys, that echo its identity and reinforce it, and also through its creation - arts, children, educated minds, ideas - that bestow a kind of immortality on the self that begot them. Further, there is a push outward from the exclusive worlds of Self and self-expression towards the inclusiveness of shared ideas and enthusiasms; the spirit of adventure challenges the self to stretch its potential to the uttermost, and to add judgement to spontaneity. In Leo. the self sets its heart on things, ideas, people - becomes attached - while in Sagittarius it learns the possibilities of freedom from ties, and its successes test its capacity for liberality or indulgence. The 'I' is learning all the time about itself, through its gifts and experiences, through seeding and exploration, through its dominion.
THREE can therefore be understood in terms of Selfdiscovery, Spontaneity, the Free Unfolding of the Spirit.
4. FOUR. In the 4th harmonic, repetition is found not only of the initiating Aries, but also of Libra, the polarity. It is the two remaining peaks on the four-fold wave that distinguish this harmonic and lend their attributes to the principle of FOUR - here for the first time appear the fourth and tenth signs, Cancer and Capricorn; for the first time self-projection is balanced by assimilation in these two 'negative' signs. THREE burns entirely, being nothing but Fire; FOUR offers the first experience of all four modes of being, employing ardour, thought, sensitivity and practicality. In ONE man is born, in TWO he confronts his mate, in THREE he establishes his dominion, in FOUR the idea of the cardinal cross and the correlative anglesof the horizon and meridian focus his attention on his place and work in the world, his origins and his aspirations, his past and his future. He acts. He puts down roots with a wife, a home-maker; he assimilates tenderness and learns to protect; he works for emotional security; he defines boundaries and becomes familiar with his territory as the Moon defines a limit for the Earth. Eve spins and Adam digs - he assimilates facts and applies them as he strives for material achievement and security. Until now his world has been timeless and limitless, he has been prompted only by the moving Spirit, the Voice of the Lord in the Garden - FOUR is the number of incarnation as the limits of form, of space and of time are experienced through Saturn and the Moon. Man has taken up the cross of matter. He knows that need for growth and nourishment; he works and eats, and conscientious but without conscience, as he is still innocent, his drives are simple: he is obedient to the Spirit and to necessity. No Fixity or Mutability characterise the fourth harmonic; no values are formed, no manoeuvring is needed.
FOUR can therefore be understood in terms of Necessity, Productivity and Orientation.
5. FIVE. The fifth harmonic is distinguished by the disappearance of Libra and the reappearance of Leo. Capricorn persists. The key experiences that enter here are those of Gemini and Scorpio. Simplicity vanishes; THREE was all Fire, FOUR all activity, but FIVE is complex. Self and its aims are coloured by a new subtlety and curiosity of mind, and a fixed determination to survive the ultimate test and know the truths that were hidden. Two squares are formed within this group of signs - Aries/Capricorn as in FOUR, and Leo/Scorpio. To the sextile potential of Aries/Gemini/Leo and Scorpio/Capricorn is added the discomfort of Aries/Scorpio and /Capricorn, Gemini/Scorpio and /Capricorn, and Leo/Capricorn. The relationships are tense through their alien qualities.
The two new signs are double signs - Gemini through its own duality and Scorpio through the dual rulership of Mars and Pluto. There is a symbol for this stage of man’s unfoldment; it is the Caduceus. The wings of Mercury (Gemini) surmount the staff entwined with serpents (Scorpio) and this was carried by both the Greek Hermes and the Roman Mercury. Hermes Psychopompus had a direct link with the Underworld and its god, as his task was to ferry the souls of the dead to their last home in Hades. The duality of Mercury was understood by the alchemists as the agency that links opposites and combines all qualities represented by the other six visible planets; on the caduceus the two wings and the twin serpents link the opposites of the heavens and the depths. Scorpio and Pluto signify power - and the ‘tacitly recognised supreme power’ (to quote Jung) is the intellect, or knowledge, the realm of Gemini/Mercury. As far as we know, excepting the central Sun (and Neptune at the extreme of its orbit), Mercury and Pluto between them contain the whole of the Solar System, and it may be on this account that alchemy assigns to Mercury a role of great importance in the quest for wholeness and perfection. Both the Prima Materia and the Lapis Philosophorum are represented by him. Wholeness is related to healing; yet the ‘bright mystery of healing has behind it the dark one of poison’ - the poison that is characteristic of the Scorpion's sting, and of the intestinal and venereal diseases connected with the harsher working of this sign. The unique link between Mercury and Pluto is emphasised by the combination of Mercury with Sulphur to form its ore, Cinnabar, ‘a dense, heavy, passionate red that seems to bore violently into our eyes’. Sulphur is the only mineral with which Mercury will associate intimately, and has long been connected with the phenomena of the occult realms. It is both ubiquitous, subtly and powerfully transformative, intensely self-combining - and these extremes are reflected in Scorpio/Pluto, in all that they stand for, in the highest and lowest exercise of power.
In FIVE, then we see the Serpent enter; the man allows himself to be persuaded to eat of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil that is in the midst of the Garden; innocence is lost forever with revelation and the opening of the mind, and life is marred by sexual shame and the struggle for survival. Man's self-will in Aries/Leo/Capricorn, intensified by Scorpio, and made fully conscious through Gemini, has forfeited the right to the ease of perpetual dependence; he is thrown entirely on his own resources to succeed or fail, to work his way back into grace, or to become more and more and more self-sufficient and separate from his Maker. It is in FIVE that Saturn may manifest as Satan, in alliance with power-seeking Pluto, as one extreme of man’s newfound potential to attain to the heights of revelation or sink to the depths of despair and degradation, through the exercise of his faculties and his will. ...his ‘Daemon’.
FIVE may therefore be understood in terms of Self-distinction, Knowledge,Power, Will and Moral Choice. Mortality.
6. SIX. The sixth harmonic is the essence of the male urge in its widest sense - implying also its ‘shadow’, the purely female - as projectivity alone is stimulated here. In THREE the self remained intent on exploring its own capacities, the impact of its identity; in SIX the fully developed intelligence comes into play with the appearance of AQUARIUS among the human qualities. Thoughts and their exchange in companionship now extend to the fresh impulse - the Original Idea. The mind has become creative, innovative, disobedient; man has aims beyond the personal drives and ambitions, he has become a social creature. Separated from his Parent and from established values, he must create his own civilization, taking the lead himself, using his reason to construct a set of principles that logic cannot fault, and that will underpin a just, liberal, progressive and cohesive society. For the first time he takes not only his mate but his fellow-men into account, and cares for them - or exercises his freedom of choice and opts for a life of total independence outside the law or beyond the norm. For the first time social values decree whether he is an acceptable individual or a misfit. The role of the man is seen as distinct from the role of the woman, and as long as the roles remain defined society will operate smoothly - this holding true whether the social structure is patriarchal or a matriarchy. SIX is expressive of the entirety of human history since the dawn of intelligence and the rise of modern civilization. In a few nations the social ideal has reached its peak, or very nearly ... which may imply a major shift in world consciousness which is already showing the symptoms of moving into its next phase.
SIX can be therefore understood in terms of Individuality, Citizenship, Intellectual Maturity, Social and Sexual Roles.
7. SEVEN. After SIX comes the seventh harmonic - the phase expected to supersede the current stage of mankind's evolution. Two signs enter for the first time here, leaving only one now unrepresented, and these are TAURUS and VIRGO. Until now the only Earth sign has been Capricorn: the ideas of contentment and service have gone unrepresented, and only ambition has been held up as a desirable motive for work. ‘Getting on in the world’, ‘working one's way up the ladder’ have been at least the Western spur to achievement ever since there have been ladders to climb - but now in the 20th century there is a change; ‘work satisfaction’ is a phrase increasingly used as more and more people are obliged to play merely an essential and useful part in the social structure, all the ambition of Capricorn necessarily transmuted to Saturn’s insistence on the rigid organisation of methods, timesheets and workforce. The ‘satisfaction’ so far has been the demand for higher and higher material recompense, the concept of ‘service’ reduced to an increasingly disgruntled insistence on the group identity; the massive organisation of multiplying peoples has led to ever-increasing intricacies in structure and a proliferating bureaucracy in which all kinds of pettiness flourish. Virgo at its worst has been reducing, levelling, pigeonholing, labelling all that is mighty almost out of existence. It is the age of the ‘mean’, the ‘average’, the ‘normal’ ... the mediocre and the merely statistically significant; these are the molehills Virgo vaunts as mountains. Mercury has gone mad: the world runs on bits of paper - paper agreements, paper qualifications, paper transactions, paper money, paper relationships, paper experience. If it isn't on paper, it isn't real. Taurus, emphasising a need to come closely to grips with fundamental reality, distorts into an entrenched materialism, a fixed, blinkered obsession with productivity and the value of ‘things’. Material indulgence has never been so gross and so widespread, nor so much of humankind’s brilliance sacrificed to short-term, futile satisfactions.
However, this may be a bridging period. As the 21st century gets under way there are fine things emerging here and there already out of the highly-organized litter. The earth signs are re-focussing man's attention onto the Earth herself: Taurus has nudged us into a consideration of Ecology, and Virgo prompts us to Economy. Man is beginning to tidy up after himself and to study his relationship to his (ie the Earth's) resources. Even Ceres, ruler of Virgo and their guardian, has been elevated to (dwarf) planetary status, culturally an equal now with Pluto! The life of creativity and ideas in SIX has been supplanted in SEVEN by a return to ground-level and a realisation of Man’s relationship to his environment. CANCER has reappeared in SEVEN to remind him of his origins: a tree cannot grow mighty and strong without deep roots, and man must now pursue a fresh understanding of the roots of his civilization and of his own personality. He begins to put himself in context: and in so doing learns new ways of being - selflessness, gentleness, humility, commonsense, the capacity to care and to make proper provision. SEVEN is almost universally a sacred number; the signs comprising its meaning entirely exclude (apart from Aries) those conveying the meaning of the number FIVE. Thus these numbers are complementary to one another, and SEVEN may be said to be everything that FIVE is not. while each needs the other to complete the unfinished nature of man.
In FIVE man found his separateness and his power and his pride; in SEVEN he finds the qualities of Meekness, of Sharing. FIVE is all assertion and aggressiveness; in SEVEN we find Receptivity and Peace. ‘Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the Earth.’ ... ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.’
From SEVEN onwards the temple builds with no new stones until TWELVE. Nevertheless the arrangement of signs at each stage imbues the number with special meaning. In a sense though, SEVEN has brought man to a kind of completion; his spiritual balance has been restored.
8. EIGHT follows on Seven; the outstanding quality here is a negative one - the total lack of mutability. The signs of Mercury and Jupiter are absent. All is Cardinal and Fixed, enterprise and evaluation; the mind is not brought to bear on man’s activity at this stage in its neutral, adaptive role; only inasmuch as it serves relationship through Libra or Aquarius. There is no flexibility; judgement and discrimination are not exercised - life is governed by the recognition and acceptance of rules, roles, and hierarchies. The relationships of phenomena and activities to each other are established and form the framework for man’s progress. The lack of curiosity, of questioning, of adventurous spirit, may contribute to a strong sense of universal order and rightness, and great stability ... and what ultimately we may hope will follow as a fulfillment of SEVEN in the future. But establishments may crystallize through this lack of flexibility, doctrines become stale, rigid attitudes give rise to interpersonal and international strife as the polarities focus on their differences. If we have failed to redeem ourselves through the experience of SEVEN during the twentieth century, EIGHT will be a terrible test of basic survival amid confrontations between man and his mistakes - the acid tests indeed.
EIGHT will be understood as Cooperation or Competition, the Awareness of Order, Active Allegiance, that which is Taken for Granted, the Testing-ground ... reflecting the accepted meanings of Scorpio, the eighth sign and the eighth house in the wheel.
9. NINE depends for its meaning again on a conspicuous lack; this time the series is bereft of Water. The only subjectivity is that of Fire. Nine is dry as the desert where so many prophets have wandered in search of wisdom, confronting the harshest reality. Sentiment is driven out in NINE; depth is bypassed as the eye of man ranges wide and high; the occult is either ignored in favour of the actual, or extinguished by vision and revelation. Practicality, clear thought, and inspiration preclude the cloying of emotion. There can be an academicism here that is proverbially dry as dust and seems quite inhuman - but passion lives in the Fire. NINE provides a great contrast to the confrontations of Eight; all is called into question once more, nothing any longer taken for granted - but, unlike high-flying SIX, ideas and ideals are related to practical realities through Earth, capable of sane application. At its best, then, NINE embodies wisdom, even inspiration of the highest kind; characterises the prophet or the leader, the man of judgement and zeal, the philosopher and teacher, capable of passing on the fruits of his experience. Too harsh a focus on the virtues of the intellect and the objective view can however lead to a gross lack of sensitivity - NINE can seem very unfeeling, as it relates and understands without empathy. This is the remoteness of the Law, of the Priesthood, of the Scholar, of Government ... a detachment to which many souls feel instinctively hostile, and to which numerous others have aspired.
NINE has the balance of dignity and humility natural to the true aristocrat, of vision and simplicity natural to the truly intelligent - these at its best. Otherwise NINE may indeed display snobbery, or highbrow elitism, or harsh expediency.
Fundamental to NINE, therefore, are Detachment, Understanding, Authority, Judgement.
10. TEN sees only one essential polarity missing - all signs are present save for Virgo and Pisces. TEN therefore lacks in its character the idea of service, which was present in Nine; even though the ability to care is potential here in the five signs now added to FIVE, implying the spiritual completion of the distinct individual aware of both his own power and his interrelations with others. From the sequence of SEVEN only Virgo is omitted; acknowledgement of the need to reconcile Self with Others has not yet bred in man a sense of obligation, of altruism beyond necessary interactions. Man is not yet complete enough to be able to afford utter selflessness.
The focus in TEN - as in the tenth house and the sign of Capricorn - is on Self-interest,Major Issues, Achievement, Political Interaction, Business... all that excludes the small-scale, the everyday, the remedial, the trivial.
11. ELEVEN. At the stage of ELEVEN almost all the archetypal qualities are assembled; the synthesis of man's potential is nearly complete. Virgo has been added to the TEN, reintroducing an essentially humane element of concern for welfare, desire to be of communal service, appreciation of the humblest units that make their often unnoticed but essential contribution to the efficiency of the Whole. ELEVEN is almost perfected - and can become complacent; a kind of Hubris can enter man's nature in the assumption that he and the world have everything to offer each other, that he has reached full understanding, and is totally integrated with nature and his fellows. He has grasped the meaning of his past, appreciates and can handle the necessities and the minutiae of the present, and works conscientiously toward a practicable future for the planet. The danger, the threat to his ultimate fulfillment, lies in the rational, analytical, critical and discriminatory faculties here developing to peaks of finesse; common to Virgo and the eleventh sign, Aquarius, these can lead to a prevailing reductionism that blinds the vision of man to any grandeur, any glory beyond the immediately discernible.
ELEVEN is painfully incomplete, its vision at once far fuller than any that has gone before, and yet tragically limited. If ELEVEN is a number of imbalance, it is so because of this final failure, this falling-short at the last minute of the ultimate aspiration to break through from the familiar, the predictable, into the province of dream. Yet, the very attainment of this crisis-point in conscious realization offers man the granting of a wish; it is at this point - at the eleventh hour - that man has his precious chance to glimpse the promise of something totally new, and to desire to grasp it. Now or never, he breaks triumphantly through or falls back. Humanity as a whole is nowhere in sight of this stage; but in every corner of the globe there are countless individuals who are poised on the eleventh step, facing a bombardment of challenges and temptations, to accept the vision of the way ahead or to remain enslaved to the fascinations of matter. Here are clearly seen the snares of fastidious Virgo, and that fraught dichotomy of Aquarius with its twin rulership - the balance of power precarious at a perpetual moment of fracture.
In ELEVEN man realises Crisis of Consciousness, his World’s Perfection, Spiritual Choice, Hubris, Incompletion, Preparedness, Conviction.
12. TWELVE. It is only when the vital step is taken to TWELVE that man achieves his truth; it is only in TWELVE that the last remaining, and sequentially last zodiacal sign makes its appearance. By Seven, all of the qualities but this one have assembled; from Eight to Eleven these recombined with varying emphases; at last the sequence is complete with PISCES and man has vaulted the divide that opened at Eleven to make the Transcendent his own. In Pisces he is Christed, born from the Virgin, the near-perfect, who manifested in Eleven. Here at last man moves beyond the material, back toward his source. He acknowledges dream, knows altruism, yearns toward the life of the spirit, experiences himself and all creation as of the same substance. Faith supersedes logic; the observer becomes the participant. Jupiter and Neptune wed in the twelfth sign the virtues of empathy, generosity and wisdom. The work is completed - and everything that has been striven for, achieved, and valued, may be renounced entirely as suddenly all previous necessities are dead weight in the new freedom. Or they may be transformed along with the man through the same alchemy. The spark of Life has leapt the last gap in the circle where Alpha is rejoined by Omega and found its next level.
And this is crucial to TWELVE; we may pursue a circle endlessly, forever coming back to where we began, or we may work our way onto a spiral - one which leads us unerringly upward onto a level above the former, or inexorably down onto a level degraded. In TWELVE man finds his height, or his depth, or the pain of eternal repetition; for TWELVE, like the twelfth house and sign, both ruled by enigmatic Neptune, is both Heaven and Hell as a whole lifetime - an entire evolution - is reviewed and summed up. It is a gentle judgement; the Self knows without thought or utterance what it is and must next become. In this transconscious knowledge lies Man's ecstasy and Man's despair. His utter sensitivity leaves him now open to suffering - to passion - and to compassion. He suffers - admits and accepts - the totality of experience. Never is humankind more vulnerable, nor so much in need not only of mercy and forgiveness but of his own forgiveness toward himself. Through an act of atonement he may, and must, become at one with himself again where the twelfth step mysteriously becomes the first and the man is source of himself remanifest in ONE. Redemption will point him on a higher-winding path - or loose him from the tortuous wheel altogether: damnation - in effect a self-condemning through much mistakenness - may lead him back onto the same circle, or direct him deeper into the origins of his unhappiness to relearn himself. As with a man or a woman, so with a civilization: many may have passed before our own, undulating hazardously between the heights and the depths of their progress until direction became irrevocable. Humanity as a whole seems pitifully far from its redemption, despite the exhortations of prophets and the courageous, tender example of the Christ and many saints.
TWELVE signifies Integrity, Spiritual Experience, Empathy and Compassion, Faith, Summation, Vulnerability, Perfection, Transconscious Knowledge, Fate.
All the foregoing may serve to illumine the meaning.of aspects or harmonics found in a birth-pattern. If two planets are linked by a significant aspect, then in the appropriate harmonic chart they will appear as a conjunction - the most potent combination of forces. For example, the Sun and Venus in Quintile (an arc of 72°) will create a Sun - Venus conjunction in the 5th harmonic chart; a Mars-Saturn square natally will emerge as a conjunction in the chart of the 4th harmonic ... and as an opposition in the 2nd harmonic chart.
Some established interpretation of numbers and patterns will be found reinforced; for instance the ‘Finger of Fate’ made by two planets each semi-sextile to a third between them and quincunx to a fourth, is a strong combination of forces in the twelfth harmonic.
I have attempted here to present a simple matrix of understanding, a distillation of meaning, a source from which the student may draw inferences of his on her own. It is desirable to expand these essential and fundamental ideas and explore them in astrological and philosophical practice - additionally to apply them to other sacred texts and sources of twelve-fold symbolism. One of the richest of these is found in the New Testament - in the twelve foundations, twelve stones, twelve gates, twelve angels and twelve trees of the Holy City, as revealed to St. John the Divine. The City has no temple in its midst; it is the dwelling of Godhead and of the Christ, and by this token becomes the uttermost Temple of the Spirit.
At every level of consciousness, at every stage of awareness, the Temple is being built throughout creation; the history of a nation is the painful placing of stone on stone, life after life of each human soul is a slow structuring, species build through trial and error toward their particular perfection. The foundations and the forms of the Temple are universal. Each one of us is moving slowly, often fitfully, closer to that heart of truth and divine love whose light outreaches, enfolds, and irresistibly calls us to build its perfection into ourselves and bring it home at last.
“And behold, I came quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have the right to the Tree of Life, and may enter in through the gates into the City.”
(Revelations: XXII 12-14)
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