The Astrological Journal May 2017
Victor Olliver's Editorial
The zombie-land of the past
Much of this issue was edited during the recent Venus retrograde in Aries/Pisces. I don’t know about you, but for me personally, one major feature of that time was the sudden reappearance of people I’d forgotten about and/or had not seen in many years, as well as a reflexive tendency to think of past relationships. To take two instances: a magazine publisher I’d not conversed with in over a quarter of century got in touch to find out the whereabouts of a mutual friend; and then in the same week, a psychic I’d last consulted well over a decade ago (and not been in touch with – she didn’t even know of my career detour into astrology) phoned me out of the blue to warn me not to do something foolhardy: that day she’d had an intuition to call me urgently, and indeed her intervention did stop me from sending a potentially life-changing email. I allowed myself to be influenced by what she said if only because her call left me wondering how on earth she could have known what I was contemplating at that moment. With natal Venus on IC (opposite Saturn on MC), you might say that I am particularly sensitive to this planet’s retrograde associations.
I reminisce because there is much in this issue that took me back to my zombie-land of the past. Carole Taylor’s soulful essay on element imbalances invokes E.M. Forster’s A Passage to India, a novel that I (as you, probably) studied at school: in a moment, my mind’s eye saw again both the old thumbed copy of my A-Level English Literature course and the tale’s cosmic wasp, the harbinger of Mrs Moore’s passing. And I recalled how much I hated my English teacher – an ancient homicidal fury was revived. Erin Sullivan’s piece on the Sun and Moon in families, and her important point that as astrologers we ought not strictly to assign gender roles to planetary agencies, took me on a surreal return journey to D.H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers which in my teens stirred up feelings of embarrassed recognition.
Ludicrously, even Liz Hargreaves’ fascinating examination of Louis XIV’s birth chart served to remind me that I had once been persuaded by a clairvoyante that in a past life I had blossomed in the king’s court at the Palace of Versailles – as a frightful dandy, no less. A whole chapter of life was resurrected just by the thought of the phantom Louis. No, I have no personal memory of him.
I could go on. But allow me to take a bow and move on. I have had quite enough of the (my!) past.
Two remarkable scientists
Elsewhere, two late scientists are remembered. Astrologer Tim Burness’ friendship with the Nobel Prize-winning chemist Sir Harry Kroto is surprising. Kroto was an outspoken nay-sayer of all things religious-mystical-esoteric (he was a noted Humanist), yet he gave Tim an unsolicited £40 after he’d read his birth chart analysis. Was it just for the labour, or something more? I must ask Tim some time. Eminent statistician and psychologist Prof. Suitbert Ertel (who died in February of this year) was that rare scientist who voyaged into the unorthodox fields that the Brian Coxes of our time can only fantasise about through disparagement. In particular, Ertel recognised the merit in Michel Gauquelin’s Mars Effect research on athletic champions, as Robert Currey relates in his appreciation.
This is the editorial from the May 2017 edition of the Astrological Journal, the UK's premier astrological magazine.