It is true that astrology has existed for millennia and that no one knows precisely when its appearance began. On the other hand, its decline in Europe, and particularly in France, is relatively recent. How to understand why the professional Astrology is so badly recognized in France, the Country of the Sun and the Lion, without looking at its history?
In the course of the history of Western civilization, astrology has been condemned several times. However, the last time, around the 17th century, was by far the strongest. It is for this reason that the last 3 centuries have been particularly difficult, and I think astrologers have had to fight as never before to demonstrate the accuracy of astrology in the face of scientific rigor and public judgment. It is a fact that, in the eyes of society, we astrologers are not accepted as normal people, exercising a “normal” profession.
In France, we do not talk about astrology in the business world, in the scientific world, it’s even banned, even if they use it! I have the impression that “the inquisition” expresses itself like a ghost in our French society. Yes, it is inscribed in the unconscious of the French Collective, it is his inheritance.
Often when someone asks me, “What are you doing in life?” I hesitate to tell the truth, and I feel hurt without even being hurt. I am sure that every professional astrologer has been confronted with this situation at least once in his life.
Of course, with the experience, the expertise and a loyal clientele that confirms our astrological practice, this feeling of being unrecognized and rejected slowly but surely decreases over time. We are gradually regaining our confidence in ourselves and in our loved astrological profession. Still, our self-confidence is delicate, because our profession is deeply marked by Chiron, the first mythological astrologer, who is one of the archetypes of Western culture. It is of a “Chironic” nature and that is what we live at the level of the Western collective.
I wonder if this “famous wound” will eventually heal one day. Can our Western and Cartesian society (Saturn) accept Astrology (Uranus)? Will the son love his father? Will the father love his son? Can we forgive ourselves?
I really believe so. The liberation of Ch (i) ronic suffering occurs when we finally forgive every bad remark, comment and every acidic critic. Because we will always be criticized, it is normal and human.
But why this process of letting go and of forgiveness is so difficult in France?
France the Land of the Sun and Leo, the culmination of patriarchy in the centre of all the centres
Once upon a time in France, during the great 17th century, came the advent of rationalism thanks to the French mathematician and philosopher René Descartes (1596-1650). This happened in the land of Leo, where Uranus (astrology) is in exile and Neptune (subtle essence) in fall: an excellent ground for a masculine and centralised expression attached to his power, to the Sun.
The thought of René Descartes joined that of Francis Bacon in the “masculinization of thought.” René Descartes was the founder of rationalism and Cartesian science, of modern philosophy and the “consumption” of nature: very Yang and Solar, astrologically in phase with the archetype of the Lion of France. And coincidentally, it happened at the time of Louis XIV, the Sun King, the absolute monarch, the greatest of the Kings of France.
The natal chart of René Descartes
Descartes outlined the framework of scientific rigor, strongly influenced by the teaching of the Jesuit Order. This male Catholic congregation, “Society of Jesus – Societas Jesu”, a military discipline, was founded in Paris in 1534. It set itself the goal of evangelization and spiritual and intellectual education, and opposed the use of astrology by the general public. In the natal chart of Descartes, his link with the Jesuits is represented by Neptune in Leo, 7th angular house, trine stelliume of planets in Aries: Uranus, Jupiter, Pluto, Sun.
” I think, so I am “
He was a man of great prudence, even shyness, good planner, strategist and critic with his planet Saturn Rx in Virgo to service or interest in “real-world”, practical and practical affairs, calculated (in Virgo). His chart shows a person endowed with a great perseverance, sharp mind, curious, analytical and critical, very inclined towards the sciences and details (Saturn Rx in Virgin sextile-trine Mercury in Aries). Saturn retrograde in Virgo trine Mercury shows his nature of the great thinker, deep and with strong and detailed structure, which is confirmed by his quote where he puts his thoughts in connection with his existence “I think, so I am”. Also, it is a need to be recognized by its very analytical, practical and concrete thinking structures. So, without a doubt, we can confirm his gift for mathematics.
According to Descartes and even Francis Bacon, we must consume our mother Earth. For the moment I find it very surprising and without appreciation for the Nature and the planet Earth even with his Venus is in Taurus trine Saturn in Virgo.
Descartes and his Mars out of bounds – contribution to the decline of astrology
Descartes was not the only one nor the first who contributed to the decline of astrology, but he was the first to be so strong, perhaps because of his Mars out of bounds in 24N59 (21° 57’Gemini).
This boundless intellectual warrior claims that the consequences of his actions, of thoughts (Mars in Gemini) will go very, very far (out of bounds) by tracing the scientific path (Mars in sextile Pluton) up till today.
It is the rigor of scientific rationalism and the rejection of Yin, nature, the unconscious world, the implicit world, astrology, and so on.
He had no planet in water, which reveals a lack of emotion, feminine energy (he did not know his mother, she died at birth), a lack of YIN, a difficulty to discover his emotional world.
This Mars out of bounds in Gemini represents very clearly, in the first sign of air, “I think” and his spirit of thinker. He was highly respected by Louis XIV (Sun – the King, coloring the stellium in Aries and Mars is also the depositor of this stelliume in Aries), already mentioned.
Then, Mars in sextile with Pluto, representing the profound of its very rational model of “iron (Mars) and power (Pluton)” with excellence and masculinity. He marked the following centuries as the greatest philosopher of antiquity, but in the opposite sense, separating science and spirituality.
According to Christine Gonze Conrad, this mechanistic revolution produced a break between man and the cosmos.
“It breaks the solidarity between man and the cosmos that was the essential foundation of science and astrology since its invention by the Mesopotamians in the third millennium ACN. The universe loses its soul and its symbolism revealing truth “
(“Heavenly Writing” page 99 C.Gonze Conrad)
This model is at the antipode of the astrological model where the macrocosm and the microcosm reflect each other. So, this Mars out of bounds went a long way, in the future until today.
This mechanistic and masculine revolution and the way of thinking of René Descartes became the way of thinking of the Western world, first presented by France and the French Academy, the cradle of European culture and science and very much influenced by the interests of the Catholic Church. Descartes has sown a philosophy that has spread throughout the Western world, but to a lesser extent in Protestant countries like England, which is currently one of the leading countries in astrology.
In France this scientific vision, very rigid and rationalist, has become culturally and traditionally the conventional and even national opinion, it is in the DNA of the French Nation. Judgment and criticism are extremely strong (Saturn is in exile in Leo). Descartes has become one of the cultural symbols of France, country of a fixed sign, which does not like change, it is a question of existence “to be or not to be”.
And to survive in this new framework of scientific thought, astrologers have begun to reduce Astrology to causal relationships, bringing it into the impasse where it is now. But Astrology does not fit into the materialistic framework of Descartes who still walks on this world, without forgetting that it was the first science and it will be the last.
We can note that Astrology was the only science in all the histories of civilization, rejected first in France with Louis XIV and his faithful business minister Colbert on Jesuit influence, then following the cultural example and scientist of the French Academy in most universities in Europe. I think this is the biggest reason why astrology and astrologers in France have difficulty developing and staying in time. Personally, I had a lot of experience of rejection, threat and humiliation when I introduced myself as a professional astrologer, without being able to show what I can do with a rigorous astrological analysis.
The effects today
So, Descartes has so clearly marked this era of the scientific revolution and of a divorce between science and nature, between metaphysics and physics. This period is the great decline of Astrology, called the mechanistic revolution initiated by Galileo and the heliocentric system. It was a rejection and a decline of Astrology and its divinatory foundations. The twin sisters, Astrology and Astronomy have been divided, which unfortunately still works.
It remains for us astrologers to assume our astrological practice, to develop it with love and devotion, to forgive and let go because we know with certainty that Astrology, if our practice is based on professional ethics, is a human science that helps people. We have yet to live our archetypal vocation of Chiron in wisdom and peace.
Next time I will tell you about the Sun King, Louis XIV and his connection to Astrology. He was still a man of great influence in the zenith of patriarchy, even a great European leader of his time. As well as very great French astrologers at the same time, Jean-Baptiste Morin of Villefranche, last astrologer of the French Academy.
Professional astrologer ISAR C.A.P
Global Director of ISAR for France
+33 6 13 55 55 23
Bibliography: “Heavenly Writing” Christine Gonze Conrad