I introduce part three of the Astrology Challenge – my quest to see if the astrologers can explain how the ancients worked out all those detailed rules astrologers use. Featured astrologer today is Penny Thornton.
Penny was good enough to write me a very friendly and fairly lengthy email with her thoughts on the subject. She seemed very genuine and helpful, and I don’t want to be too hard on someone who undoubtedly means well, but I have to say her email was long on words but short on hard information. I will quote just a few relevant parts:
You pose a salient question. And, of course, as a practicing astrologer, I wish I had a neatly prepared answer.
we can only make assumptions as to how and why they derived any meaning from the planets and constellations. But given that these ancient civilizations saw omens in the flights of birds and sheep’s entrails, why not the stars?
from the beginnings of man, when his entire survival was based on nature and the elements that, without TV to enlighten him, the starry sky at night gave him plenty to look at and to derive meaning from. And somehow across the millennia an intricate system of knowledge developed, in part through empiricism, in part psychic guesswork and a mish-mash of myths and legends.
Summary – she doesn’t know but it’s similar to reading sheep’s entrails… er, they made it up.
Tomorrow – the Research Director of the National Council for Geocosmic Research. Now she must know the answer.