Aim For the Gist

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Jim Eshelman
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Aim For the Gist

Post by Jim Eshelman » Mon Jul 09, 2018 6:57 pm

Long-time participants in this forum have seen me, many times, refer to concentrating on the core elements of a chart primarily - adding other details as matters of finesse once you understand the essential idea of the chart. Another way to say this is, "aim for the gist" when interpreting a nativity. Participants in the Wednesday-night LA classes are already warming to the idea of understanding a horoscope of a personal balance of greater and lesser strengths of ten clusters of needs - just a small bit can help you go a long way.

This approach is, I think, well stated by a Garth Allen article that appeared sometime in the '50s or '60s in American Astrology and was then reprinted in the 1974 American Astrology Digest. Here is an excerpt from a segment titled, "First Things First."
Garth Allen wrote:Understanding a chart is a matter of e pluribus unum - coming to one broad, integrated mental picture of the chart's planets, aspects, signs, and houses as a well-knit organization. One of the axioms of biology could be cited here to convey the idea, i.e., "all good traits in planets, animals, and humans tend to go together." The same is true of bad traits. There are always exceptions, of course, hence the importance of the phrase, "tend to."

A person with only elementary training in psychology knows how useful this axiom can be for, given two or three traits and attitudes of some unidentified person, it is possible to draw up a fairly accurate list of the other traits and attitudes he probably has and holds in order for the known characteristics to feel at home in the same personality [emphasis added]. This is famously true, for instance, regarding political or social inclinations, where one or two revealed facts about a man's beliefs will automatically fill in the picture as regards other viewpoints.

When it comes to reading a horoscope, if you correctly discern a few of the native's most prominent characteristics from it, chances are you can deduce considerable detail about his personality from those forefront facts alone. It is almost wasteful, methinks, to spend hours and days trying to interpret a bulky clutter of teeming figures, minor aspects and persnickety tabulations of all conceivable chart circumstances.

These all have meaning, of course, but their meaning is strictly subservient to the logical demands o the one sweeping picture which should have suggested itself to your mind soon after you set up the basic chart. There are worlds of information to be dredged from the simple conclusion that a person is chiefly Jupiterian with Martian overtones, is somewhat "mutable" in temperament, and has a creative flair along manual rather than mental lines. So aim for the gist of the chart as a whole and the details will fall into place more or less by themselves.

Also, don't be afraid to take advantage of knowledge arrived at by nonastrological psychologists just because you are afraid of being called unorthodox by your astrological brethren. Psychology as a body of knowledge has much to offer to astrology. To illustrate, psychologists tell us that peple who defy conventions and seem to enjoy shocking their neighbors by extreemely nonconformist prctices and manners are people whose outward happiness is pure bluff to mask deepseated inferiority complexes. Their rebelliousness is rooted in inner faers and a phobia against anonymity.

Hence, take care how you handle the delineation of Uranus - you may inadvertently be ascribing the wrong thing to the wrong planet because of mental enslavement to the key words. It will be a glorious day when modern psyvhology anbd astrology get married. Astrological texts will then have a refreshingly new, more ueful slant on the human condition.
Jim Eshelman

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Re: Aim For the Gist

Post by SteveS » Tue Jul 10, 2018 2:44 am

Thanks Jim for posting these Bradley writings from old AA articles. It has been said these AA article by the early fathers of Sidereal Astrology form the 'best astrology book ever'.

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