Another important point which is only too often overlooked is the position of Mercury with regard to the Sun. When Mercury is in a lower degree of the same sign as occupied by the Sun, or in any degree of a preceding sign, he rises before the Sun and, so to speak, carries the rays of the Day Star forward. But when he is placed in a higher degree of the same sign as the Sun or in the sign following that occupied by the Sun, then he rises after the Orb of Day and is, so to speak, overshadowed. Therefore it has been found that when Mercury, the planet of mind, logic and reason, rises before the Sun, it gives a keener, better intellect than when he follows the luminary.
ARE YOU HELPING YOUR STARS?
One not infrequently hears students of Astrology express their annoyance at the way the stars work. They complain that the evil directions are always on time and marked in their effect, while very often the good directions seem to have little or not influence and they wonder why. Have you ever realized that you cannot possibly get something for nothing, any more than you can create something out of nothing. This holds good whether you want a loaf of bread, a position, favors, or anything else. If at any time you seem to get something without paying for it, you will have to settle later, and settle with interest, for it is nature's law of Justice that nothing is given for nothing. There must be an equivalent in one way or another; the scales may be tipped in one direction for a long time, but as surely as the pendulum swings equally to one side of the neutral point, so surely will the scales of justice swing, and swing until the balance is reached.
This holds good in Astrology; it is said that "God helps the man who helps himself;" you may also say that the stars help the man who helps himself, for they are God's ministers and it should always be remembered that the stars show tendencies, they mark times when opportunities are ripe, but they never under any circumstances compel anyone to act in this, that or the other manner. But neither are the directions haphazard events, they are lessons and experiences for us, of which we may avail ourselves, or not, as we choose within certain limits. For instance, the Moon comes to a square of Mars, and it will bring to us an opportunity to lose our temper, and get into trouble thereby, then when the trouble is over and we sit down to reflect on the occurrence we will most likely say to ourselves: Well, what fools we were to allow a little thing like that to play havoc with our happiness. On the other hand if the Astrological student uses his knowledge in the proper manner, then he should know what the effect of the Moon square Mars will be, he should resolve beforehand to be calm and say: Here is an opportunity for me to rule my stars. I am going to keep my temper well under control so that no matter what happens, I shall maintain my equilibrium. Then, when the opportunity comes along to lose his temper he may stand firm. Although he may feel the passions surging within, he may stand outwardly quiet, keep a cool head and when the danger is past he will have gained a victory and learned the lesson which it was intended he should learn. Or suppose it is a square of the Moon to Saturn; this will cause people to worry and look upon the dark side of life, but the astrological student may say to himself when such a configuration is approaching: No, I am not going to worry; worry will not help matters, it hinders, because it takes from me all my strength, wherewith otherwise I could overcome conditions. I am going to look at the bright side of the matter and see what I can do to remedy this trouble.
As a matter of fact most of the things we worry about never come to pass, and if the student can learn under this planetary direction to keep his equilibrium, to stop worrying, then he has ruled his stars and learned an important lesson. Thus, if he helps his stars be learning the lessons which they re endeavoring to teach him, the evil directions will not have the same power over him as if he simply sits down and folds his hands saying: "Well, I cannot help it, I am under the evil directions and naturally things are bound to go wrong in every particular ." There is in the horoscope a dominant factor, namely, the Individual Will; bear in mind that the horoscope shows only tendencies and it has no power whatever to compel you; compulsion is from within yourself. You, in the final analysis, are the dominant factor in that horoscope, and can by an exercise of sufficient will power rule your stars. It is admitted that we are all weak, and therefore not able to exercise the necessary will power at all times; but that is exactly why these evil directions are sent to us, to enable us to cultivate a stronger will to do the right thing at the right time and it depends upon ourselves whether we shall be compelled by circumstances from without or by our own will from within. Surely that is the proper way, and astrological students above all other people ought to be able to guide their lives safely amid the rocks and shoals of existence, because they have proper warning, they know what is coming, and they should prepare for it.
On the other hand it is asked: Why do the good directions not bring a corresponding measure of benefit? And the answer to that question is, for the same lack of co-operation. It is as absolutely necessary to help our stars in one direction as to hinder them in the other. Are you out of a position with perhaps the family exchequer running low and no means in sight wherewith to replenish it; but your hopes centered upon a strong favorable direction such as perhaps a trine of the progressed Moon to the ruler of the Sixth House or the Sun? Under these conditions you feel sure, from an astrological standpoint, that you are going to obtain a good position which will put you on easy street. Very well, you may be sure that the opportunity will come, but do not expect it to be laid in your lap without a single effort on your part; if a thing is worth having it is worth going after, it is worth making the very best efforts to get it; do not neglect any detail, dress yourself carefully, but not showily when you go to see the person who has it in his power to bestow the favor, remember, first impressions are important; have all your ammunition ready in the shape of recommendations and everything else that you would have were you not depending upon an astrological aspect to help you get the position. Use every proper means if impressing the prospective employer with your ability and you may depend that your effort will be successful, for you have helped your stars, you have grasped your opportunity. Or, are you about to embark in a business venture with some one else and you feel very confident because the Moon is trine to the Sun and Venus in the Seventh House? Be careful that you do not lay aside your caution on that account, thinking that under such a direction no one can come into your partnership who is not all right. If you do, you neglect your part and you will have no reason whatever to blame the stars if later on it is shown that the person is not all you expected him to be. Nothing is needed in the world today in the same degree that we need common sense, and this applies to the department of astrology, as well as to every other department of life. Opportunity may be likened to a toboggan slide between ourselves and our desires; it is necessary for us to make an adequate initial effort in order to launch our sled upon this incline, but once we have done our part, then everything will go along swimmingly under favorable directions, for then the stars are with us to impress others in our behalf, or to strengthen our penetrative power so that we may know what is best for us.
If you want to know positively the power of directions, even transits, as will call the actual position of the stars in the sky, take an ephemeris and note the moon's aspects for the current month. When the Moon is in opposition to Mars you will find in people a general lack of energy and ambition, they would rather tear down than build. When we have a conjunction of Mars and the Moon, people will be active and energetic, but impulse rather than common sense will govern, hence they will accomplish little good, and may do harm without intention. But when the Moon and Mars are trine, there will be a general desire among people to do something of a constructive nature, and they will meet with success in such efforts. And last, but not least, when the Moon is square to Mars it will make people irritable, quarrelsome, destructive, ready to fly at each other, unreasonable and unmanageable.
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