The Living Signs

Hellenistic Astrology – The Living Signs
part 1: Introducing the Zoidia

by Steven Birchfield

Zeus with Ganymede

The broad river of Modern Western Astrology has evolved over the centuries, incorporating a variety of tributories, from sources as diverse as the Babylonians, the Egyptians, Greeks, Indians and Arabs. Steven Birchfield, an astrologer and philosopher, has been writing a series for us on Hellenistic Astrology, the underlying basis of our system. This section begins his fascinating exploration of the Living Signs…

This essay has been a rather ambitious project I’ve been working on for several months and it appears it may be a while longer before it is completely finished. However I wanted to begin publishing it in the individual parts as I feel comfortable with the results. So what is now available is pretty much finished and as I finish the other sections I will be including them.

I wanted to discuss the ‘Signs’ on perhaps a little different level in this essay. We are all used to seeing a lot of interpretations of the ‘Sun in the Signs’ or the Moon or the other planets in the Signs. You don’t hear much about the signs themselves. In fact it is pretty consistent that when the ‘signs’ are discussed as a subject themselves, we find the traditional descriptions most prevalent where their elemental nature, mode of action, physical attributes, etc. are described.

There is another side however that appears with remarkable consistency throughout the major early writers, a side that has perhaps fallen off a bit into obscurity and ambiguity. In order to understand this side we will have to go back a ways in our astrological history and try to regain just what the early Hellenistic astrologers meant when they used the term we call ‘signs’.

Please read on….


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