The Astrological Journal March 2015
Victor Olliver's Editorial
"Fate and Destiny are different animals, I think," wrote Dennis Elwell back in 2004. "Destiny is higher; it has more to do with one's potential, or dharma, or divine plan. Destiny is something for which we must strive; Fate is what happens to us if we don't. Both are visible in the birth chart." In this issue we republish the essay, in which he makes these points, as part of our tribute to a man described by many as one of the 'greats' of astrology. Personally, I'm getting to know him posthumously since I had not read him at all before his passing of last year. Had we met I am certain we'd have argued. My reward from such an encounter might have been enlightenment if not a bruised ego.
Mike Harding's wonderful memoir on Elwell has a sting in its tail: he does not like the arrival of the Sun sign horoscope in Journal. To be honest I had expected a storm of protest. None came (at time of writing) - except that sting. Goodness knows what reaction Jessica Adams' asteroids Sun chart on p.64 will provoke. I'm hoping curiosity rather than baffled deflation preceded by a sigh. Test the Sun chart. See if it works for you. As Elwell wrote of popular astrology back in 1975, in his essay 'Is There A Solar Chart?': "If it contains only a grain of truth it deserves attention, and there is no reason why it could not be nurtured by proper research to produce a mass astrology far more accurate than can be expected in the present state of our knowledge." Now, there's a thought.
Pam Crane's debut astrology crossword has a cynical purpose: it is to turn Journal into a guilty pleasure. Into an addiction. Yes, there is a prize to be won. Frank C Clifford also starts a new regular in which the importance of accurate birth detail and reliable information sources is emphasised in profiles of notable people. And if you can quite separate yourself from these enticements, you'll discover Alan Oken's esoteric piece on Earth and its rightful place in the horoscope; Anne Whitaker's lyrical contemplation on the much-misconstrued 12th house; an interview with the editor of Switzerland's Astrodienst - one of the largest astrology websites in the world; and Wim Weehuizen's fascinating piece on lunar occultations of the planets and what these may signify.
And I've not forgotten our extensive analyses of the UK General Election of May 7. Nick Grier boldly names the man likely to win this contest while Roy Gillett places the event in wider astrological, political and social contexts (as well as outlining likely outcomes). And Christina Rodenbeck performs a merciless astro-vivisection on Nigel Farage. "Cheers for that!" as he might say, rictus stiffly in place.
Thank you for your many congratulations on my first issue - not least from past editors Carole Taylor and John Green. My cunning plan is to get more copies out onto the shop shelves and into the hands of people seeking a serious but worldly approach to astrology. There's simply nothing out there in the market for such a demographic. Such a step (confined to my imagination at present) has risks: Journal would soon lose its value if rigour became diluted. Yet it is perfectly possible to remain credible while embracing aspects of the commercial. It's all about intent and USP - unique selling point.
But that's for a notional future. I won't tell you what I see coming....
This is the editorial from the March 2015 edition of the Astrological Journal, the UK's premier astrological magazine.