Studies in Astrology


Elman Bacher

Volume VIII

Chapter V


   The word "adolescence" means "to continue to grow." In its application to human involution and evolution it refers to the periods on various octaves which succeed each new turning-point. It is the process during which is manifested the unfoldment of potentials after the new identity has been established. Abstractly, "adolescence" is a part of the "childhood" of the octave; it is not maturity--it is the unfoldment toward the maturity of the octave. In music, each "C" inaugurates a new tonal octave--a "turning- point" in the tonal spectrum; the "adolescence" of the musical octave would be al1 the tones between that "C" and the next one--above or below it--depending on the direction of the musical passage.

   Abstractly, the "childhood" of human-experience octaves might be designated as "being born," "starting school," "becoming an adolescent," "becoming a parent, or a worker, or a teacher." All of these designations refer to new points of experience. A man who has only one child-- only a few years old--is an "adolescent" in father experience. Another man, who has a number of children who are all adult, or even married and themselves parents, is in the maturity of father-experience. The younger father is in the process of parentage-maturing; the older man has reached maturity in this particular >experience. "Fatherhood-motherhood," as a new turning-point of identity, is established when the first child is born; the experiences between that time and the adulthood of the last child of the family is the "growing-up of parentage." When the "baby" of the family has reached the status of a self- sustaining adult, the father and mother reach their maturity, as parents. The birth of each child into the family is, in turn, a "variation" of the basic parentage identity because each child brings in a different vibratory pattern on which the parents must, in the ensuing years, exercise their potentials of Love-Wisdom. The development of each child is coincidental with a different "adolescence" of the parents, as a fraternal husband-wife "team."

   Give yourself a little mind-exercise on the word "adolescent." Turn your attention to many phases of Nature and observe the processes of "growing-up-ness:" the growth of plants and trees and the maturing of their flowers and fruits; the development of young animals and birds; the unfoldment, even, of daytime and nighttime that follows the appearance of the Sun and the Moon on the Eastern horizon. The seeming "arc" in which the Sun and Moon travel across the sky from horizon to horizon is a natural symbol of "manifestation and childhood," "adolescence," "maturity," "decline" and--with the disappearance of the luminaries below the Western horizon--"transition." This is a natural symbol of Cosmic Beauty because it symbolizes the essential pattern of all Life-expressions in their unfoldment of potentials, maturity and, finally, recession into subjectivity.

   The subject of this discourse is the concrete application of the word "adolescent" as it refers to a specialized phase of human experience. It is the timing for manifestation of the Bi-polar essence of the individual; he manifests a new maturing of his physical organism, his emotional potentials and a most significant evidence of his karma. (We will-- for simplicity--use the masculine pronoun "he" as the subject; but "he" will refer to any adolescent, male or female.)

   The first mandala we will study is a very simple one: a circle with the horizontal diameter; the symbol for Aries at the left point, the symbol for Libra at the right point. From the standpoint of the "on-going- ness" of the individual's life, this mandala is the arch-symbol of polarity, of which the Capricorn-Cancer diameter is the first basic variation. These two signs are "masculine" in the sense that they picture the dynamic individuality--"capable of initiating causes"--of male and of female, respectively. But, in relationship to Aries, Libra is "feminine" because "she" symbolizes the effect from (or reflection of) causes that were expressed by the Individuality.

   The two radii which comprise this diameter--appearing as a "single line"--are the archetypes of the two semi-circles. All of the potentials of the first six houses (of the twelve-housed wheel) are implied in the Aries-radius; those of the upper six houses are implied in the Libra- radius. The semi-circles are simply the unfoldments of resources initiated by these two cardinal signs. Therefore it is shown, in a way so simple as to be almost deceptive, that the horizontal diameter itself comprises the polarity- potential of the entire circle.

   As a result of the generative action of the parents (Capricorn-Cancer) this line is an effect: horizontal, feminine, resultant, matter, the begotten. But as a symbol of dynamic expressiveness of the individual human, it is a cause--the effect of which is the Capricorn-Cancer diameter symbolizing maturity of the individual, during incarnation in parenthood or any other expression of "life-giving-ness."

   So now we see the "magic" of symbology: the Cosmic Principle of Cause-and-Effect, in bi-polar expression (both abstract and generic) pictured by one and the same line. Give this a lot of meditative thought with reference to your own experience as a human. Your expressions as an individual are symbolized by Aries; your emotional-reaction-awareness of your complement is Libra. But--your expressions and your reactions are all you; your complements are living symbols of those elements in your physical and generic being which have not yet been fulfilled by your individuality.

   Now, in reference to the four-quadrant, twenty-eight- year cycle of the wheel, the period we designate as "adolescence" is the third quadrant--counterclockwise--from Aries, the one that is initiated by Libra The generic elements which were objectified in the prenatal period are now objectified by new octaves of emotional consciousness and outpictured by other humans. At this "new birth," "I AM" is transposed--as a musician transposes into a different key--into "WE ARE." The subject walks around in time and space and perceives "parts of himself" reflected by persons of complementary polarity-patterns. The scorn, bashfulness, antipathies, etc., which adolescents exhibit toward those of the opposite sex need not be objects of anxiety of parents; fear is the normal, natural reaction of the human-being when he is brought face-to-face with something he doesn't understand. However, when boys and girls respond to the power of attraction of each to the other, in bi-polar couples, we witness the charmingly ludicrous performances of "young things" trying to orient themselves in the distracting, fascinating dimensions of new emotional octaves. Such dramatizings, such tricks, such gigglings and weepings, such dreamings --both by day and by night--such new self-confidences and courages followed by their complete deflations, such vanities and true beauties, such hopes and disappointments, such star- lightings and moon-glowings, such irritations and absent-mindednesses, such fantasies, and such ideals and worshippings!

   Not only do the "young things" go through the travail of "new Beginnings" at this time--their parents do too! Sex-consciousness is attended by the need to understand sex; how do the parents, individually and as a team, deal with this phase (it is not essentially a "problem" except in their own minds) of their children's growth as individuals and their own as parents? Family-polarity really "goes to town" at these times: the son (and his girl-friend), the daughter (and her boy-friend), the parent who is husband-father (as well as "older brother" to his son because he has gone through the same experience himself) and the one who is wife-mother and "older sister," all are in processes of union with their unfulfillments-- individually, as couples, and as a family-group.

   Sex-education, as is any other phase of educative process, is symbolized by Gemini and the third house in the sense that any little child can learn the names and purposes of "things concerning sex" many years before he becomes adolescent. In the third quadrant of the wheel the educative process transcends the "mere naming of things."

   When the child becomes conscious of his sexual nature, his education must involve a learning to understand the principles of sexuality as they manifest in his being and in all Nature. When parents, because of "congestions in ignorance," confine their sex-instruction simply to names (sometimes, pathetically, not even that much) they fail their responsibility to their adolescent sons and daughters. Let us point our attention at the third quadrant of the mandala: Three signs are represented-- Libra, Scorpio, and Sagittarius; add the symbols of the latter two to the mandala. Libra is the turning-point, the new awareness of "We Are;" Scorpio, Fixed Water, is the desire to sustain the "we are" as its complement, Taurus, is the desire to sustain the individuality. "Traveling through Scorpio" is the releasement of generative resources at puberty, the physical changes, the magnetic processes of sexual attraction and the instinctive urges to make the "We Are" manifested chemically in physical union. Scorpio symbolizes the resource of most intense aspiration to realize the ideal of uniting personality with soul. Anyone in love who addresses the beloved as "my soul" is not being just emotionally fatuous--he is putting into words a recognition that the vibratory nature of the loved one has ignited the lover's consciousness of spiritual identity.

   Adolescence is the "pre-natal period of parenthood" and, as such, it is the timing for ignition of the person's inner ignorance and inner wisdom concerning the principles of generation and polarity- relationship. And, in this "ignition," very important facets of "secret karma" are manifested; karmic residues of unfulfilled relationship-patterns are "brought out into the open" after the dormancy of childhood. The adolescent's own latent fatherhood is now emerging as an effect from his expressions as husband-father in his last male incarnation; so with the girl--her previous wifehood-motherhood now reappears for further fulfilling. Since the father and mother have been, up to this time, the living symbols of "man with woman," the emergences of adolescence can intensify the affectional patterns of the child's feelings toward either parent or both of them, or a latent animosity can now appear. The boy has become conscious of "female" as a Life-symbol, so it is to be expected that his feelings toward mother and sister will intensify--according to his generic elements--and a deeper sense of affection and comradeliness toward the father and brother or a growing sense of rivalry toward them (as "fellow males") can manifest. Also "transferences of affection" from husband to son or from wife to daughter can take place in the emotional patterns of the parents because the "new adult male" and "new adult female" can represent, to the parent of the opposite sex, a symbol of new love. Many times the mother tries to recompense herself for marital frustrations by extending her wife-love to her adolescent son and so may a man to his daughter. Absolutely nothing "evil" need be intended by these transferences but when they happen they are evidences--effects--from having repeatedly expressed according to emotional congestions. The often-seen tragic congestions of intense mutual feeling of family-pairs toward each other are evidences of past relationships of a deeply emotional type--the persons are "nailed together" by the magnetic attraction of unredeemed desire forces. If these attractions are not decrystallized by the exercise of mutual respect of individuality, then the relationships take on the coloring that we call "generic complexes" and the adolescent phase, in such case, results in a congestion in old patterns rather than a liberation for greater fulfillment.

   If this period is to result in individual ongoing- ness, the parents must exercise their Love-Wisdom as never before and the adolescent must strive to learn more about the principles of generation and relationship than he ever knew before. The parents become teachers and the children become students; this is one of Nature's ways of encouraging impersonalization of the emotional attachments within the family organization. It is "Uranus at work" to decrystallize Scorpio-Taurus-congestions from the past. The emotional and desire-resources of the adolescent male and female must be encouraged to extend into the octaves of healthy individual mate-love. The parent who seeks to discourage this development makes bitter karma. Parents who "exercise this constraint" do so because their own frustrated urges (intense desires) are permitted to transpose normal and natural protective concern into a voracious "something" compounded of possessiveness, egotisticalness, and fear. Herein lies one of the most important responsibilities of parents as thinking people. The woman who makes her son a substitute-symbol for "husband" and at the same time retains the status of "wife" to the man she married is deflecting the reality of her marital identity into something that resembles a terrible illusion. The same for the man who, in compensation for marital disappointments, makes use of his daughter's womanly affections and devotion. Such relationship-mix-ups are tragic and "human tragedy" is summed up in "congestion in desire-ignorance." The transmutation of "tragedy" is releasement of congestions.

   When the "We Are"--the marital individuality--of a husband/father-wife/mother team is maintained in mutual Love-Wisdom, the individuality of the son and daughter is automatically respected, since neither parent has need of "emotional substitute-symbols." Then instruction regarding "facts and principles of love, marriage, and generation" can be naturally, intelligently, and inspiringly given and absorbed. Hence the adolescent is rhythmically conditioned to enter the Sagittarius-part of the third quadrant as he or she opens naturally to new realizations of old wisdom. From that, he/she is prepared, in consciousness, to "reach the Midheaven" and enter the fourth quadrant as an adult--a "younger contemporary," as man or woman--of the parents. To give the instruction and to absorb it is to fulfill the Capricorn-Cancer line--fulfilling parentage responsibility and fulfilling the requirements of parenthood-to-be.

   (If "learning calculations" is the "childhood" of the astrologer, then his "adolescence" is the study of symbols in their individual and collective significance; "maturity" is in outgiving of what has been learned; as consultant, writer, lecturer, and teacher, the astrologer is "spiritual parent" and he takes his place in the ranks of World-servers; in this service he is in the "adolescence" of his "elder-brother-ship-to-be.")

   TECHNICAL: it is suggested, from the author's experience, that the study of the adolescent's chart be made in this way:

   1. Careful analysis of each natal Moon-aspect; of squares and oppositions to planets in Cancer (ruled by the Moon) and their correctives.

   2. Analysis of squares, oppositions, and correctives of aspects to the planet which "disposits" (rules the Moon-sign) the Moon.

   3. Analysis of the seventh house of the horoscope as the resource of the "I Am" that emerges, in adolescence, as "We Are;" that which is to be fulfilled principally in the marital relationship.

   4. List--by careful calculations and in sequence: all aspects made by the progressed Moon to planets which it legitimately aspects in the natal chart before and after it opposes its natal position the first time --approximately in the fourteenth year; "pattern" this listing so that you are made aware of each corrective to every congested aspect; it is necessary to know to what extent the subject is capable of decrystallizing his desire-congestions.

   5. Include in this listing every solar eclipse that falls in this period of the "progressed Moon opposing its natal position"-- even if the listing of progressed-Moon aspects extends beyond the time when Moon-opposes-Moon--and it could.

   6. Include the date when Saturn, by last direct transit opposes its natal position; this and progressed Moon opposition-its- natal-position is the vibratory focus of the adolescent period--the "building- in" vibratory mechanism.

   We suggest use of mandalas for focus of concentration in order to release your interpretative awareness of the subject's generic potentials.


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