Foundations of Astrology- As Above, So Below
You’ve no doubt heard of astrology and perhaps even understand what it is or how it works. Or maybe it’s just a term that you’ve heard and haven’t given much thought to.
You know your sun sign, what more is there to know? It’s probably a bunch of woo-woo hippy stuff that doesn’t actually have any scientific basis, right?
Let’s start with a phrase you may be familiar with. “As above, so below” is a fairly common term that is actually a paraphrase of a hermetic text written in the late eighth or ninth century. This simple verse is often thought to be a reference to the supposed effects of celestial mechanics, or the movement of the planets, on terrestrial events or earthly bodies. By now, most of us are familiar with the effects of the moon’s orbit on the tides, earth’s orbit around the sun on the seasons, etc. Like clockwork, these cycles play out, day after day, season after season. But if one planet or sun can have those kinds of effects on earth’s cycles and inhabitants, why wouldn’t ALL planets have an effect of some sort? Well, astrologers believe that they do. Astrology is based on the theory that everything happening in the cosmos does have an effect on all of us.
Ancient Greek philosophers such as Plato and Hippocrates suggested that there are structural similarities between the human being and the cosmos as a whole, and coined the microcosm/macrocosm analogy that has been referenced throughout history. Simply put, there is a corresponding similarity in pattern, nature or structure between human beings and our universe. This concept views human beings as a smaller but representative part of the whole universe.
“Therefore, we may consequently state that: this world is indeed a living being endowed with a soul and intelligence...a single visible living entity containing all other living entities, which by their nature are all related.” Plato, Timaeus, 29/30; fourth century B.C.E.
The earliest evidence of astrology dates back to the 3rd millennium BC. For many centuries, astrology and astronomy were one and the same. Humans learned to live by the sky and by tracking the stars we could plan and predict certain cycles. Until the 17th century, astrology was considered a scholarly study along the lines of medicine, meteorology and alchemy. As scientific and technological advances were made, our need for astrology has changed.
As astrologer Kevin Burk says in Astrology: Understanding the Birth Chart:
“Astrology is the study of cycles. By observing the cyclical movements of the planets, we are able to gain a greater understanding of the cycles and patterns in our own lives. Astrology can be a powerful tool for healing and transformation, and it can be a key that can unlock a greater spiritual connection to the universe. Although astrology is not fortune-telling, when skillfully applied, astrology can be an extremely effective predictive tool. On a personal level, astrology…can give us insight into our personal issues, our patterns, our fears, and our dreams…Astrology is a tool that can help us understand and unlock our highest potentials, and that can teach us how to live in harmony with the universe.”
So remember, you are a part of this divine universe- As Above, So Below.