Commentary by Linden Leisge
This manuscript is the first to mention the concept of Paranatellans. A concept of polar opposites. It embraces the idea that the opposite constellations of the Zodiac and the decans are the symbolic representations of the stories of the Bible and the Greek myths. This principle is shown in many types of myths from India, Egypt, and other myths of some importance to the Major religions of the world. This idea is not in Spiritual Astrology or in the Bible stories presented in the Sacred Tarot. But it clearly shows the origin of the Biblical ideas from the concept of the Paranatellon along with the idea that the characters of the constellations where woven into the stories of all lands and religions. It is possible also for the student to see many more parallels if the student is diligent in researching this matter by a study of the Mythology of many ancient cultures. Another idea presented here is the one about how to direct the desire, and emotions (Love and Wisdom) by Wisdom. This is the main theme of the Aquarian age. More of these ideas of Ancient Wisdom are being discovered by the research of Graham Hancock in the book Underworld and others who are diligently looking for the Truth of history and the development of civilization. Which continues to be resisted by Atheistic Materialist in academia because it conflicts with the prestige of those in control of our schools and Science or Scientism.
Serial No. 73. Course VII - C.
The Religion of The Stars.
That the, ancient Sages not only ascertained the inf1uence of each sign and decanate of the zodiac upon human life, but also pictured the, precise influence of each by means of corresponding constellations, need not remain a matter of surmise to anyone with enough initiative to observe the life and characteristics of people born when each is rising, or in a general way, when occupied by the Sun. Taking for granted- as a working hypothesis to be demonstrated later- that the same sages, inheriting the wisdom of a more spiritually enlightened age, attached to each of these signs and decanates religious ideas that represent facts found in nature, and the necessity arises to ascertain exactly which pictured constellation was portrayed to symbolize each zodiacal sign and decanate. As we have stated in the previous lesson, the constellations do not occupy the same position nor the same number of zodiacal degrees that the signs and decanates do. The zodiacal constellations, however, have the same names as the zodiacal signs, so that it is easy to locate the constellated picture representing the influence of each sign. But the name of each Decanate has not been preserved by history; being among the records destroyed by the religious crusade against astronomy and astrology. In order, therefore, to find the correspondence between the decanates and the constellated Decans, it becomes necessary to have a map giving these pictured ultra-zodiacal constellations in the positions they were anciently formed to occupy.
Anciently the constellations embraced only those stars contained within the symbolic pictures, but modern astronomers in their ignorance of everything occult, have expanded these constellations to embrace the various adjacent areas, and have mostly neglected the pictured representations altogether. Therefore, we cannot rely upon any modern astronomical atlas for the correct size and sequence of the constellations. Alexander Jamieson published in a school atlas about 1820 the pictured constellations latitude of the ancients, with the Longitude, Declination, R.A. and Latitude of each correctly mapped for that Year. Jamison obtained these from some large, highly emblazoned, foreign monkish charts, which were reduced according to scale. Whence Jamison obtained these old celestial maps, no one appears to know. But they are the most authentic maps of the ancient heavens we now possess, and are to be found reproduced in Henry Melville's "Veritas" published in London 1874.
In determining the order of sequence of the constellations there are two possible methods that might be followed. The positions of the heavenly bodies are determined in one of two ways- either by R.A. and Declination, measured along and away from the Celestial Equator- or by Longitude and Latitude, measured along and away from the Ecliptic. Due to the fact that the earth's axis is slowly changing the relative positions of the constellations by right Ascension changes from age to age; but the variation by zodiacal Longitude is almost nil. Also, in practical astrology the ancients, as well as moderns, use the zodiacal Longitudes of planets and constellations- the star positions recorded by both Hipparchus and Ptolemy being given in terms of Celestial Latitude and Longitude. Modern astronomers usually use R.A. and Dec. Both ancients and moderns start with the first point of Aries both for calculating Longitude and R.A. The reference can safely commence with the first point of the constellation Aries as corresponding to the first point of the sign Aries, and proceeding around the heavens in the regular order of succession we find that each succeeding zodiacal sign corresponds to the succeeding zodiacal constellation. And the same method being followed with the ultra-zodiacal constellations, or Decans, each succeeding decanate from the first point of the sign Aries will correspond to the succeeding Decanate from the first point of constellated Aries. Thus as astrologers reckon by Longitude, the first constellated Decan by longitude corresponds to the first 10 degrees or decanates of Aries; the second Decan in Longitude corresponds to the second 10 degrees, or decanate of the sign Aries, and so on. We hope the student will understand this matter in detail and avoid the impression that the correspondence between Decans and decanates is in any manner arbitrary, It is in fact, exactly the same method employed to determine the correspondence between signs and pictured zodiacal constellations, which all astrologers recognize.
Our method of procedure in the following pages will be first to give the spiritual interpretation of a zodiacal sign as revealed by its pictured constellation, and then proceed with each decanate of the sign in its proper order and reveal its religious import as symbolically pictured in the corresponding constellated Decan by the Sages of antiquity. It wi11 not be possible, through lack of space, to give an interpretation of each in all its variations- but enough will be given to put the student on the right track, and to convince him that every religious myth and allegory found in the Sacred Books of the world today has been derived from, and are mere verbal renditions of, the ideas symbolically represented of old in the starry firmament above.
In the course of our studies we wi11 have occasion to use a few astronomical terms employed by the ancients. The constellations north or south of the zodiacal constellations that rose on the horizon at the same time were called Paranatellons that rise, and these that set at the time a constellation rose were called Paranate1lons that set. The Chaldeans, from whom the Greeks borrowed the idea placed great importance on the Decans and Paranatellons; for it involves the consideration of polar opposites. Thus, when the sign Aquarius rises on the Eastern horizon, the same degree of the opposite sign, Leo, sets on the Eastern horizon; and figuratively the Man of the Zodiac- call him David if you wish- slays the Lion of the Zodiac; for the Lion sinks below the horizon into oblivion and the Man ascends into prominent view. Turning from the Bible to the mythology of the Greeks- as a single example, we find the constellation Orion with a zodiacal Longitude exactly opposite, or 180 degrees; from the constellation Scorpio. Whenever the constellation Scorpio rises, the paranatellon constellated Orion, sets, and vice versa. In practical astrology the opposition is the aspect of an antagonism, but also having some significance in partnerships. We need not be surprised, then, to learn from Greek mythology that Orion, the greatest hunter in the world, boasted of his ability to conquer any animal in the world and to punish his vanity a Scorpion sprung up out of the earth and stung his foot causing his death. Looking at a celestial atlas we find the foot of Orion that apparently rests upon the ground to be in zodiacal Long. of about 20 degrees Gemini and the Sting of the constellation Scorpio to be in zodiacal Long. of about 20 degrees Sagittarius- exactly opposite. Therefore, when the Scorpion rose above the horizon of the earth, Orion descended out of sight below the horizon in the West, a vanquished Hero.
Still another ancient technical matter needs to be called to the attention in this place. When a star rose at Sun-setting, or set at Sunrise, it was called the Achronical rising or setting. When a star appeared above the horizon just before the Sun, it was called the Heliacal rising of that star, and when it sunk below the horizon immediately after the Sun it was called the Heliacal setting. We have the authority of Ptolemy for the statement that stars of the first magnitude may be seen rising and setting when the sun is 12 degrees below the horizon, those of the 2nd. magnitude when the Sun is 13 degrees below, those of the 3rd. magnitude when the sun is 14 degrees below, etc. This data is of the utmost importance in making calculations from ancient observations, which are frequently given in terms of the Heliacal rising or setting of some star.
The pictured constellations are Universal Symbols employed to express Spiritual Truths as ascertained by the Adepts of the Golden Age. We shall expect to find in the mythology of every race, therefore, in so far as it has been handed down from the distant past, the elaboration of the ideas the pictured constellations symbolize. And as these constellations, as we now possess them were derived from the Greek Celestial sphere, and each picture is a character well known to Greek Mythology, it seems logical to conclude that the simplest key to their interpretation is to be found in the allegories woven about them by the Greeks- both constellations and myths having been derived from the Initiates of Egypt and Chaldea. Having determined the gist of the matter as derived from Greek sources, we may then turn to the Sacred Books of any land, confident we will find there also a similar story with an identical significance- tho probably interwoven with the notions, customs, popular desires, and local history of the people by whom preserved. In each case we may take the starry constellation as the basic spiritual fact presented as a universal symbol; about which will be woven the Phantasies of the people- just as every dream of individual man is composed of a significant factor, about which are woven by his desires, and the suggestions offered by remote and remote events as well as by environment, a network of minor details of little real consequence.
At start we will take an example in which we may well omit the Grecian element as it relates to a sequence quite familiar to every reader, and also embraces at once the whole circle of zodiacal figures. We may mention in this connection that all nations who were devoted to The Religion of the Stars, held to the doctrine that man once occupied a more spiritual plane of life, that he descended to earth for the purpose of gaining certain necessary experiences, and would finally win his way back to the heavenly home in full conscious knowledge. History records that the Druids held to this belief. Heroditus affirms the Egyptians of his day taught this idea. It is plainly stated in the Hindu Vedas as illustrated by the following extract-"As ten thousand beams emanate from one central fire, thus do ten thousand souls emanate from Him, the one Eternal Soul, and return to Him". This doctrine as taught in the Mysteries of Egypt and Greece is fully set forth in lesson, Serial No.1-" The Ritual of Egyptian Initiation". In our present effort to exemplify the stellar correspondence with this idea we will take the Bible.
Aries, the first sign of the zodiac, and the Exaltation of the Sun, is, as every astrologer knows, the sign of Creative Energy. The Book of Genesis opens with an account of creation. The Ego of man was never created- but there was a time when it was indrawn to the soul-sphere of its Angelic Parents and given a differentiated existence, a spiritual birth.
As the Sun is the vital principle so the Moon is the formative element. The Moon is exalted in the second sign of the zodiac, Taurus, which is the sign of greatest fecundity. Therefore, immediately following the various acts of creation as recorded in Genesis, all things are commanded to bring forth abundantly. The newly-born Ego commences to manifest thru various forms.
The third sign of the zodiac is the first human signs and, is pictured as the Twins, Gemini. Having made all things fruitful, the God of Genesis proceeds next to make man- and forms him in His own image, male and female. As life and action is but an expression of sex, following the general biological law, the higher life evolves the more highly differentiated and specialized becomes sex. So the first self-conscious being in the zodiac is represented as a male and a female. In the involution of the Soul, the Ego being unable to descend lower as such, evolves a positive and negative soul-monad. For every male soul there is a twin female soul- for both physics and metaphysics hold to the law that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.
The fourth sign of the zodiac is Cancer the sign ruling the home and domestic life of People, The second chapter of Genesis, which comes next, tells specifically how woman was formed- really how dual souls sprang from a single Ego, and gives the details of their life in their home, the Garden of Eden. As applied to the involving soul, this Garden of Eden is the Spiritual plane. And it is interesting to note that the first Serpent of the sky starts with the middle Decan of Cancer, the middle of the garden, or home- and the bible mentions the tree as being in the middle of the garden. This constellated Water (Cancer) snake, Hydra, extends the full length of the four constellations, Cancer, Leo, Virgo, and Libra, which correspond to the four Companionship Houses of a birth-chart- its head being in Cancer and its tail ending in the last of Libra, connecting the two domestic constellations Cancer and Scorpio. In fact all the creative serpents in the sky commence in the constellations that correspond to Companionship Houses; which is quite proper, for the serpentine spiral which we call life is the result of the interaction of positive and negative forces. The Houses are given in detail, with their significance, in lesson Serial No. 47.
The fifth zodiacal constellation is Leo. The sign Leo is natural ruler of pleasures, desires, children and affection thru the fifth house of any horoscope. The first constellated Decan of Leo is Crater, the cup. This Cup rests upon the back of Hydra, the tempting serpent. A cup was, and is, the symbol of affection, its contents representing the emotions. So we next find the woman of Genesis desiring to taste the fruits of experience. The Soul, now on the astral, is tempted to experience incarnation in matter.
The sixth zodiacal constellation is Virgo. Virgo is the discriminative sign, and as ruled by Mercury is an intellectual and scientific sign. Therefore, the serpent Hydra, extending at the side of the constellated Virgin, commands the fruit of the tree of knowledge, And Virgo people are the great repositories of knowledge today. Their minds are often crammed with facts. And being so discriminative we find the Virgin displaying the practical judgment of the sign, for the serpents words- "that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil", were subsequently verified, And here arises one of those paradoxes, so common in all Sacred Books, and which makes literal interpretation impossible; for on the face of things the Serpent is made more veracious than Deity- God stating death lurked in the fruit of the tree, and the Serpent contending Wisdom and not Death lay in the eating. However, universal symbolism reveals that the spiral form of a serpent is the symbol for creative energy in action. Wisdom is possible only thru successive lives and deaths constituting evolution- proving the correctness of both statements. Eating of the tree of experience brings both wisdom and death and perhaps life also. It represents the impersonal soul on the verge of incarnating for the first time in matter and filled with anxious expectations.
The seventh zodiacal constellation is Libra. Libra is the sign of the house of partnership and marriage, and we find the woman partaking and offering the fruit to her husband. The first Decan of Libra is Serpens, another starry serpent, the second Decan being Draco, the third serpentine creature of the heavens. And it is a significant fact that what we call Serpens, the first Decan of Libra, was called Eve by the Chaldeans, and practically the same name by many other ancient nations, and to this day by the Persians. The woman of the bible is not called Eve until she submits to the temptation of the generative serpent. Hydra is a water snake, the feminine creative energy of Cancer. Serpens is masculine, commencing in a positive sign and being held in the hands of a man, Ophiuchus, who holds the first Decan of the sex-sign Scorpio. Draco, being the second Decan of Libra, is the true evolutionary movement resulting from the combination of Hydra and Serpens, Partaking of the fruit, as applied to the Soul, signifies its first incarnation in matter. Their eyes being opened signifies the sensitiveness developed thru evolution from mineral upwards thru the vegetable, incarnation in the vegetable kingdom being described as clothing themselves in fig-leaves.
In stellar matters the hour-hand on the dial of the constellated universe in always the Sun, the Moon marking the starry minute. While the Sun passes thru the first six signs of the zodiac which we have just been considering the days are longer than the night, light more prevalent than darkness- so far as this hemisphere is concerned. Therefore, these six Summer signs, and their corresponding constellations are considered to symbolize the realm of Spirit, and the other six signs and corresponding constellations, due to the fact that when the Sun is in them there is more darkness than light, are considered Material, or Winter signs. And, it is by no means chance that the ancients placed 21 ultra-zodiacal constellations, or Decans North of the zodiac, and 15 South. In the Hermetic System of Names and Numbers as used by the ancient Magi, the number 15 corresponds to the planet Saturn, Black Magic and the Devil- and while the Sun is in the South, Night is longer than day, and the Sun passes thru the Winter region of Satan, or Typhon, or Saturn. The number 21 (see Hermetic System) corresponds to the Sun and to Adeptship- and when the Sun is in the Northern signs the days are longer than night, Osiris, the Sun, triumphs over Typhon. The head of the Serpent Eve, or now called Serpens, which is the first Decan of Libra, as pictured in Jamieson's atlas occupied the zodiacal Longitude between 10 and 20 degrees Scorpio- and the sword of Perseus lies between 10 and 20 degrees Taurus, directly opposite. This sword, which more will be said about, later, when inverted takes the form of the cross of Calvary. It is an astronomical fact that this sword- you may call it the sword with which Peter cut off the ear of the soldier who sought to captivate the Sun of God, and as the sword is in the hand of Perseus who occupies the Sagittarius Decan of Aries, and Sagittarius in the natural ruler of the house governing Priests; so it was the ear of the high priest's servant that was severed- rises point first. But half a day later it sinks below the western horizon at the very instant the head of the serpent rises in the East- and it sinks with point down and hilt up, in the form of a Christian Cross.
When the Sun passes into the sign Libra the nights become longer than the days, the serpent has triumphed over the, Virgin - for the Sun passes directly from Virgo into the Decan of Serpens in Libra. In so doing it passes over the Celestial equator, the equinoctial cross, or marriage of Summer and Winter signs. The constellation Libra is pictured as the Balances. It aptly pictures the period when days and nights are equal, being weighed in the balance. Libra is the sign both of enmity and of marriage, the balances being represented by the two scale-pans united by an equilibrating bar. The balances are also a universal symbol of equilibrium and inflexible justice. Therefore we find the God of Genesis calling Adam to account and passing judgment upon him. It must seem rather strange to orthodoxy that God should have been walking in the Garden in the cool of the day; but it certainly is an appropriate way to express the thought that the Sun has passed from the hot days of Summer across the Equator into the cool days of Winter. The second Decan of Libra is Draco, the Evolutionary Serpent- and after Eve explains how she was beguiled, the Lord (Lord when found in Sacred literature may always correctly be rendered Law)- placed a curse upon the serpent. He told the Serpent(Lord means master, and Natural Law is the Ruler of the Universe), that he must hereafter go on his belly and eat dust all the days of his life. The Soul incarnated in matter, no longer free to soar thru spiritual realms must cling to the earth, and must live on the product of the soil. Zoology records no snake that literally lives on dust, but all physical life subsists on the product of the soil, or of dust.
The third Decan of Libra is Lupus, the Wolf. The wolf is a universal symbol of enmity and destruction. It occupies that part of the heavens directly opposite the last Decan of Aries, the Ram, When the Wolf rises its paranatellon, which sets is Aries, the sheep- from whence we discern the origin of those passages that refer to the Wolf and the Lamb, and the Wolf in Sheep's clothing. Both constellations are not visible at the same time, one disappearing when the other rises. So we find the Lord saying, I will put enmity between thee and the woman- the wolf rising after, or following the woman of the sky, Virgo. And when the soul enters physical life it comes under the law of struggle for survival- and only survives by preying like the Wolf, on other forms of life- either vegetable or animal. Libra also rules the seed, and the enmity is stated to be "between thy seed and her seed". Also, we discern that there is a natural relation between creation as symbolized by the Sheep, and destruction, symbolized by the opposing Wolf- the sexual energies being always diverted into one of these two channels, constructive or destructive- the antagonism between mere brute desire, and the intelligent use, as represented by the scientific sign of Woman.
The eighth constellation of the zodiac is the Scorpion. It corresponds to the house of death, and is also a symbol of procreation- life in one form being always the death of another form. It rules a Public house, yet has a strong significance on domestic life. The first Decan of Scorpio is Ophiuchus, the man who wrestles with the Creative Serpent. Serpens is pictured as passing between the thighs of Ophiuchus, being firmly held by the latter in a mighty struggle for supremacy. This is man's struggle for supremacy over his sexual nature. Israel means one who wrestles with God, and we find in Gen.32:24 Jacob wrestling with a man until break of day- though in the constellations he wrestles with the procreative Serpent known to us as Serpens and in the orient as Eve. Also Jacob's thigh is out of joint even as is that of pictured Ophiuchus. Jacob refuses to permit the serpent to depart until it blesses him-"Thy name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel; for as a prince thou hast power with God and with men, and hath prevailed." Creative energy, the manifestation of sex, being the One Force in the Universe he who can control and direct this Serpent Fire, -as the Hindoos call it, is blessed and has power over things and men. The creative fire is the fountain of life, as Jacob says-"I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved. And as he passed over Peniel the Sun rose high upon him, and he halted upon his thigh." By looking at the pictured constellation it will be found that the Creative Serpent does rest upon the thigh of Ophiuchus, and it is well known that the procreative, energies of the Sun in the first decanate of Scorpio, are stronger than in any other place In the zodiac; the Sun rising in the first decanate of Scorpio, corresponding to the constellated Decan, Ophiuchus, on whose thigh rests the Serpent, being the strongest possible combination for sexual energy.
The ninth constellation of the zodiac is Sagittarius. Sagittarius is positive and masculine being pictured as half horse, half man, whose full drawn bow aims an arrow at the heart of the sexual constellation Scorpio. Sagittarius is the ruler of the house of philosophy and religion- called the house of the higher mind. It is a dual sign, and when the animal part of the sign is dominant those born under it act upon impulse, but when the human half is dominant they act from the highest motives of generosity and benevolence, being ruled by philosophical and religious conceptions. The reference to bringing forth children in sorrow, signifies the mental children of experience, gained in physical environments, and which as the outcome of religious conceptions, finally brings wisdom to the soul. That "thy desire shall be to thy husband" signifies that evolving above the animal, the desires are no longer determined by the animal impulses, but are controlled by the masculine faculty of reason the outcome of the philosophical conceptions signified by the human half of the sign of the higher mind, Sagittarius. Thu desires of man should be controlled by wisdom.
The tenth zodiacal constellation is Capricorn. Capricorn is an earthy sign, ruled by the sorrowful planet Saturn. It is the natural ruler of the house of business. So, we find the Law cursing the ground, and speaking of the sorrows which astrologers at the present time allot to Capricorn- as well as the tribulations of that sign. Also, it refers to the business propensities of the sign- "in the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread", and to the fact that when the Sun enters the earthy sign Capricorn its rays are weakest and vitality lowest, this being the sign ruled by the planet Saturn, significator of Disease and Death-"for dust thou art, and unto dust salt thou return". Capricorn has the head, front quarters, and twisted horns of a goat, but is represented as having the tail of a fish. The head of Capricorn is directly opposite the head of Hydra in Cancer, the fish part of Capricorn starts at a point just 180 degrees, or opposite, the starting point of the body of the water snake Hydra. Water is the mother of all physical life as biologists are well aware. The fish's tail of Capricorn implies water. Cancer is the true mother sign of the zodiac- but the fish's tail of Capricorn also implies the affectional and maternal attribute- particularly as the two Decans in later Capricorn are occupied by Fish. So, next in the order of scriptural passages we find that Adam called his wife Eve; because she was the Mother of all 1iving, the word Adam meaning red earth- just as thru the influence of water, or the Mother principle, the Earth, or Capricorn, brings forth all living things. And as applied to the Soul it signifies that all acts are prompted by desire- Eve, or Serpens, or Desire, being the mother of every experience, either physical or mental. The Law now provides Adam and-his wife with coats of skin- for evolving up thru the vegetable kingdom the soul next finds itself clothed with an animal body.
The eleventh zodiacal constellation is Aquarius, pictured as a man with the Masonic 24 inch gauge in his left hand and an urn under his right from which flows a stream of water, in which the Southern Fish of the last Decan of Capricorn disports itself. Virgo is the Woman of the zodiac, and, Aquarius is the Man of the zodiac. Both are scientific signs, the woman holding in her hand the branch of the tree of good and evil, and Aquarius having obtained the instrument with which to measure and gauge facts, and also learned to use his emotions and desires at the behest of intelligence, as signified by the waters flowing from his baptismal urn. So, we find 0enesis stating-"And the Lord God said, Behold the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil". This means that the soul having arrived at the self-conscious estate of man has a moral responsibility resting upon wisdom acquired thru experience. The scriptural passage does not end here, but goes on to say-"and now lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life and eat and live forever".
The twelfth and last zodiacal constellation is Pisces, pictured as Two Fish, inseparably united by a ribbon. A fish, being a denizen of the emotional element, water, has ever been employed as a symbol of love. It was so used by the early Christians who adopted the Religion of Universal Brotherhood as taught by the Initiate and Reformer, Jesus, and also by Apollonius. It was their custom to trace the sign of a fish as the password to their secret meetings. The only trees in the sky are the branch held in the hand of Virgo, and the branch bearing the apples of Hesperides held in the hand of Hercules. These pictured apples, from whence rose the tradition that Eve ate of an apple, are not an independent constellation, but they do rise at the identical moment the bow and arrow of Sagittarius does, being the latter's paranatellon that rises; and they rise at the identical moment the feet, or understanding, of Gemini sets. To be specific, the Soul had a certain understanding indicated by the feet of the mental sign Gemini. It was tempted by the desire for greater knowledge as signified by the tree branch held in the hand of the mental sign Virgo. It therefore ate of the tree of the apples that always appear when the feet of the Twins disappear, and rise with the philosophical and religious constellation Sagittarius. This far all seems quite clear, but the tree of life remains a mystery, and the Bible infers that God is anxious to prevent man from partaking of it for fear man will become as powerful as God- and so man is driven from the Garden.
As the three signs connected with this mystery, so far, Gemini, Virgo and Sagittarius are mutable signs, we would naturally look to the fourth mutable sign to solve the mystery. No tree now appears in Pisces, however, but instead are two fish which symbolize mutual love. There are but two zodiacal constellations in which two distinct figures are represented. And as the first Gemini, represents the separation of dual souls as distinct intelligent entities, Pisces, the two fish bound by the ribbon of love, signifies the reunion of male and female dual souls through the binding power of love. The first Decan of Pisces is occupied by King Cepheus, sitting on a throne with a scepter in his hand. Perhaps this scepter, formed from a tree is the original of the tree of life; for its form, symbolizes union. The second Decan is occupied by poor Andromeda chained to the rock of material interest. The third Decan Is occupied by the proud queen Cassiopea. To exemplify the idea of love, we find for the first time in the, heavens, a human family, all three members being represented by the three Decans of Pisces.
The tree of Life is the fountain of love, partaking of which intelligently- for the sign Pisces rules the feet, symbol of understanding and man will, as sayeth the Bible, live forever. The sign Pisces, as all astrologers know, is called also the, sign ruling the house of self-undoing and imprisonment. And as the middle Decan of constellated Pisces is occupied by poor Andromeda bound in chains and awaiting the advent of a huge sea-monster, Cetus, to devour her, it is apparent Cepheus and Cassiopeia have not altogether partaken wisely of the tree of life, also their beloved offspring would not be in such a distressing situation. Unfortunately the bible makes no mention of the self-sacrificing Andromeda- in fact, the passage about the tree of life chops off short in the middle, as if someone forbade more being written about it.
The Greek Initiates were more liberal in this respect than the Hebrew, and tell in detail how Perseus comes to the rescue in the nick of time and slays the hideous sensual creature that would consume her- but this will be explained when we get to Perseus, the last Decan of Aries. Passing from Pisces, the Sun starts a new cycle, as passing from earth the soul commences a new life in higher realms. The natural house of Aries starts with the Eastern horizon where the Sun rises, symbolical of spiritual realms from whence cometh all light. So we find the Law driving man forth from the Garden, just as he passes from earth through death, to another plane. The soul thus symbolically enters the l3th sign of the zodiac thru death, which is the original idea behind the popular custom that the number 13 is evil, and that if 13 are at table one of them is to die; just as there were 13 at the Lord's Supper- one passing on by way of the Cross.
And the Law p1aced at the East of the Garden, Cherubimís and a flaming sword which turneth everyway to keep the way of the tree of life. Man is not permitted to return to the region from which he has departed- for the flaming sword of the cyclic guard bars any retrogression in form. There are no 800 or more reincarnations in human form, going over and over the self-same lessons. The anthem of Creation is Eternal Progression. And there at the Eastern Gate of the sky today, as of yore, will be found Perseus, with cherubic wings on his feet, and in his hand the flaming award which he uplifts, a Tau with point up, symbol of regeneration, to keep the way of the tree of Life. And the Greek account indicates how he slays the monster of sensualism and frees his wife to be from the chains that make her a captive to material considerations, rather than to the promptings of a spiritual love, and thus hand in hand they partake of the Tree of Life.
The deliverance of Andromeda by Perseus the union of soul's as symbolized by the two fish of Pisces, the re-collection of the fragments of the Sun-God Osiris by his faithful spouse Isis (Virgo, the paranatellon that sets opposite Pisces) in a very important moment. It is the moment symbolized by the Sun passing over from the old annual cycle to the new by crossing the Celestial Equator from Southern to Northern signs. This moment was anciently, and is today, considered very important by astrologers. It is now called the annual Ingress into Aries, and from a chart erected for this moment students of Mundane Astrology predict the events that will happen to the various nations during the ensuing year. It has the significance of passing from the old, or material, life, to the new, or spiritual life. And as the Sun in the source of virile power, his passing around the circle and again renewing his powers for another cycle was commemorated by the Jews by the rite of circumcision. And as it was known that all the planets also travel the zodiacal circle, seven full days after birth were allowed the male child before he was circumcised as an acknowledgement of the influence of the seven planets. Circumcision took place on the eighth day after birth; and was a hygienic measure of value, and also had the significance of consecrating the child to the Sun, and to a Spiritual Life.
Exodus 12, describes the Jewish Passover. This month (the month of Nisan, or Aries) was instituted as the first of the year, even as it now is the commencement of the year of astrology and astronomy. In the tenth day of the month each man must get a Lamb, As it was a Sun ceremony they must wait, until the Sun had passed into the decanate of Aries ever which the Sun has sub-rulership and in which the Sun has its strongest Exaltation, This Lamb must be in the first year of its life, for the Sun is in a new Aries, and without blemish- even as at birth one is sinless. This is a Mars sign, this sign of birth, and also the sign of violence. The Lamb, therefore, is slain to signify its transition to another plane of life. The blood of the Lamb is then daubed on the lintel and two side posts of the door to the house- to indicate the conditions surrounding both the birth into human life, and violent birth to a higher life.
The significance of daubing the blood on the doorway is the same as that symbolized by the ancient Dolmens. The Dolmens, mentioned in the last lesson, represent the avenue by which birth to a higher life is accomplished. As the new birth was to make the household as pure as babes, no 1eaven was permitted in the house for a period of seven days, for leaven is an impurity and symbolizes pollution. There was a feast in which the flesh of the Lamb was to be eaten with unleavened bread and with bitter herbs. The Lamb must not be eaten raw, nor sodden with water- for Aries is a fire sign, consequently the Lamb must be roasted, and any that remained in the morning must be burned with fire, to show complete transition to a dematerialized state. The herbs being the first growth of the new year are quite appropriate as symbols of new life- and are bitter to indicate that birth and rebirth ere not accomplished without discomfort.
The symbolism of transition to a new cycle is further strengthened by the feast being-"with your loins girded, your shoes on your feet, and your staff in your hand; and ye shall eat it in haste".
Egypt was the land of captivity to the Jews. Pisces is the sign of captivity to all astrologers. The Sun passes from the winter signs of darkness, directly from Pisces into Aries, the Ram. Aries is the first sign of the zodiac, the sign of birth, and of violent transition. So it commended Gen. 13:13. "And every firstling of an ass thou shalt redeem with a lamb; and if thou wilt not redeem it, thou shalt break its neck; and all the firstborn of man among the children shalt thou redeem". Using the Blood of the Lamb, as a Redeemer was a custom among the Jews and many other peopleís centuries before the advent of the Lamb of God whose blood, according to orthodoxy, is all-saving, and will wash away the sins of the world. The blood of the Lamb, considered from the standpoint of Initiation, is the spiritual Exaltation of the Soul thru the draughts from the affectional fountains of the river of eternal youth, Eridanus, the middle Decan of Aries.