In episode 119 of the podcast, Dr. Bernadette Brady attended the show to talk about the astrological meaning of eclipses and how astrologers saw and worked with them in both ancient and modern times.
Bernadette has a PhD in Anthropology and is tutoring the MA in Cultural Astronomy and Astrology at Trinity Saint David, University of Wales. In 1992 she published a book called The Eagle and the Lark: A Textbook of Predictive Astrology, which contained an influential chapter on the use of eclipses in Western astrology.
In the first part of the show we talk about how eclipses were seen by astrologers in the ancient Mesopotamian astrological tradition, and later we pass over a discussion of eclipses in modern astrology, including their influential work on the Saros cycle and the concept of eclipse Familys.
You can find more information about Bernadette on her website:
Below are the show notes outlining some of the points we raised in the discussion, followed by links to download or stream the recording of this episode of the podcast at the bottom of the page.
First a brief announcement:
Announcement: Great American Eclipse Documentary
I recently interviewed a team of California filmmakers who are making a documentary that focuses on the great American solar eclipse. The title of the documentary is Umbra and is directed by a podcast listener named Natalie Rold.
The production of the film is funded through a crowdfunding website called IndieGoGo. They are currently about 60% on the way to their funding goal. The deadline for funding the project ends next Tuesday, August 22nd.
After meeting the team involved in this project, I think this is going to be a really great movie and I want to encourage all of my listeners to look into it and do their part to help the group fund the project .
You can find more information about the project on the IndieGoGo page:
Umbra: The American Eclipse Documentary
If they’re able to meet their funding goal, we should see a really well-made documentary that talks about both astronomy and the astrology of the Great American Solar Eclipse by next year.
- A lot of attention for the so-called Great American Eclipse will take place next week.
- I thought Bernadette would be a great person to talk to on this topic as she is known in the astrological community for her work on eclipses.
- We introduce Bernadette and talk about her background in astrology.
- Author of The Eagle and the Lark: A Textbook on Predictive Astrology (1992)
- The eagle and the lark contained a large chapter on eclipses.
- The astronomy of the eclipses.
- Define the basics.
- Eclipses occur when the lights fall on the same path for latitude and longitude
- Connection between eclipses and the knots.
- The path of the solar eclipse casts a shadow on certain parts of the earth.
- The experience of darkness in the middle of the day
- Astrological views on eclipses
- Eclipses as some of the earliest types of astrological omens.
- How were eclipses seen in ancient times?
- Eclipses in the Mesopotamian Astrological Tradition
- Almost 40% of the moon tablets in the Enuma Anu Enlil were on Eclipse Omen.
- The solar eclipse is often interpreted as a negative omen, though not always.
- The Mesopotamians mainly focused on secular astrology.
- Eclipse reconciliation rituals in Mesopotamia
- Fate is seen as negotiable.
- The replacement king ritual.
- That negative signs could be averted was the motivation to predict eclipses.
- Later traditional views on eclipses.
- In medieval astrology, eclipses did not always coincide with an event immediately.
- Eclipses in modern astrology
- Not necessarily viewed as negative, but powerful.
- Important if they are close to planets in the natal chart.
- Bernadette recommends the use of tight balls of 2-3 degrees.
- House placement of a solar eclipse
- Illuminates an axis for 12-18 months.
- In this way, not a one-off event, but often a sequence or series.
- Bernadette notes a kind of placeholder quality for eclipses.
- The eagle and the lark contained a unique and innovative chapter on eclipses and the Saros cycle.
- Introduces the concept of the Saros cycle.
- Article on the Saros cycle on the Bernadette website
- Discussion of the Saros cycle and its use in astrology
- Eclipses as belonging to families or cycles.
- Each Saros series creates a solar eclipse of 18 years plus 9 to 11 days.
- Moves 10 degrees each time.
- Similar expression
- Study the past to predict the future.
- Casting a chart for the birth of each Saros series.
- This diagram shows all future eclipses in this series.
- The importance of studying astrology from a historical and cultural point of view.
Check out this episode
You can either play this episode of the podcast directly from the website or download it to your computer as an MP3 by using the buttons below: