Wednesday, 17 June 2009

William Lilly's Nativity - continued

My decision to publish William Lilly's true nativity here was made after much thought.In terms of circulation, the internet is second to none, but it has many drawbacks, too. I wanted the widest possible audience for an astrological fact. Too often astrologers are deluged with opinion and it is time that a few facts were introduced into a daily diet of pre-digested whimsy. William Lilly's nativity, offered for your interest here, is a fact, but not a universal truth. It is a fact because it exists and because it was the calculation which Lilly himself used (Elias Ashmole tells us so). It is not a universal truth because it is a personal instrument rectified to Lilly's own satisfaction and so broadly comes under the heading of opinion. Nevertheless, it is Lilly's opinion, not that of an enemy. I don't understand why it is that astrologers appear to accept so readily that Gadbury's approximation is good enough to work with. But, unfortunately, this is just an example of an attitude which helps to perpetuate less than rigorous scholarship. I am not a scholar, I am an astrologer who has engaged in serious study and research, even so, I am capable of providing the sources of my information so that readers may form their own opinions.

There is only one astrological system. It may have evolved over the centuries, but it remains fundamentally the same and anyone who has even looked at the authors of the past will see that. However, method does vary and we can link that to cultural changes, yet the system remains recognisable from one age to another - until the 20th century that is. William Lilly is important because he presents the system in a way that modern minds can readily understand because his time is much nearer to our own. Still we have to deal with the cultural differences, but nothing so vast as that when we try to approach the medieval period or the classical. William Lilly is important because he speaks of astrology as it was, not as it became through the Enlightenment. He speaks of astrology as a magical art, inextricably linked with the other hermetic arts. William Lilly is important because he practised what he preached and his success will never be matched by anyone in this age, we simply do not have that level of understanding. Our culture has robbed us of the means by which we might approach the subject and we have lost innocence, as William Blake might say. And yet we still claim astrology as our own...

The very least we can do is to get our facts straight.

My thanks to Luis Ribeiro of Academia de Astrologia (link shown right) who produced this video.

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