The Twelve Letter Alphabet, sometimes called the twelve “Archetypes,” underlies much of the presentation of planets, signs, and houses in modern Western astrology.  In my view, this has led to the distortion of much of astrology’s fundamental symbolism. Many other astrologers have come to the same conclusion, yet this system persists.
This article, the result of many years of frustration with the conventional presentation of astrology, has as its goal that astrologers question their explicit and implicit use of the Twelve Letter Alphabet.   A case can be made for putting this system away forever, and I attempt to make that case here.  For newer students I’d like this article to be a “patch” to decrease their confusion and help them think things through when they encounter different versions of astrological symbolism.  For more experienced astrologers and astrology teachers, I would like to stimulate some long-overdue conversation.

CLICK HERE for the full 26-page article.


With Uranus transiting Aries for the first time since 1927-1934, cookbook astrology would predict a New Birth of astrology's relevance around the world by 2019. As with so many beloved astrological catch-phrases, “New Birth” is vague, generally applicable and perhaps ultimately meaningless in any informative sense.

Astrologers historically have enjoyed highlighting significant technological revolutions accompanying Uranus transits: Uranus’ archetype is considered synchronous not just with inventions and technology but with astrology itself.

Since coming into the study of astrology, I have deeply pondered the mechanism behind its magical and profound workings.  Any student of the subject has surely been amazed by its exactitude and precision in the timing of events, bodily illness, and passing moods that sweep through us in any given day. It is the unending and uncanny accuracy of astrology that keeps me motivated to continue my study. I also believe that astrology can be used to aid in healing. For instance, medical astrology can often be as accurate as a laboratory test, yet looking at the astrological chart is completely non-invasive.

Glasscock, Robert—a personal anecdote, by Robert Glasscock

Somebody once said to me, resentfully: “You get everything you want, don’t you?”

Now, that’s an interesting question and one I’d never thought about. I realized that, to this man, it seemed I DID get everything I wanted.

by Enid Newberg

I don't know of any astrologer who doesn't jump at the chance to learn more and increase his or her skills. I am certainly no exception to this rule. And this leads me to a pet peeve I have with many otherwise wonderful articles and lectures: I cannot tell where the information came from!

Dear Marv:
Please settle a long standing bet between myself and

my mother; Do the stars Impel or Compel?  -- Lazee in Leucadia

Dear Lazee,
If I only had a nickel for every time someone asks me this question... well, I'd have a lot of nickels! You would think this would be a "no brainer" for an astrologer to answer, and it is; but as usual the question is an onion best peeled gently, so as not to tear the eyes.

Astrologers of the 20th century were fond of this saying, but who was the first? Well, if you "Google" it you get a bunch of red herrings. Rosemary Guiley in her Encyclopedia of Magic and Alchemy quotes Dane Rudhyar as coining this phrase. The only problem with this is that she is wrong. Rudhyar actually says something quite different in his essay Must You be the Victim of Your Stars, (see http://www.khaldea.com/rudhyar/astroarticles/ starvictim.shtml). He actually says the "stars" may compel.

It has been said that we each stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us. I know this to be true in my own life, and I know from my studies at Kepler College that it is also true in the field of astrology. Over the twelve months, I have read a great deal about Ptolemy. And while I still don’t understand everything he said or did, I am amazed at what he and the ancients accomplished without modern technology. I am also amazed by the great scientific minds that continued to evolve the ancient science of astrology forward by not only building upon the previous generation’s foundation but also by expanding it.

As we have another eclipse this Sunday, July 11, it seems a good time to consider the Moon's nodes. Astronomically, the nodes are the points where the Moon's orbit around the earth intersects the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun (and planets) around the Earth. Whether it is a north or south node is determined by whether the Moon's orbit is has crossed the ecliptic going toward the Northern or Southern Hemisphere. When this intersection of the Moon's orbit and the apparent path of the Sun and planets occurs during a new or full moon, we have an eclipse.

Astrologically, there are different schools of thought with regard to interpretation of the nodes. In general, traditional astrology treated the South node as malefic and the north node as tentatively benefic. Vedic astrologers in India do not like either one. Here are some early interpretations: