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Posted By: Luis on: 08/20/2006 06:37:24 ET
Subject: RE: Definition of Planet?

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I'm following the debate with great interest. In my opinion there are two best approaches (from the astronomical viewpoint)

1/ Everything that is pretty much round because of its own gravity and orbits directly around the Sun. Quite scientifical but with doubts for a range of objects.

2/ Everything that orbits the Sun and is bigger than Mercury (or, alternatively, does not belong to a large population). This would exclude Pluto and I really couldn't care less, as it's clear now that Pluto belongs to the Kuiper Belt as much as Ceres is part of the Asteroideal Belt.

But from the Astrological point of view, all this, not just the Astronomical debate but the fact that so many objects have been discovered recently poses many interesting questions.

For instance many astrologers use Chiron, which is little more than a small piece of debris but, for some reason, exclude other simmilar or even bigger objects. Uh?

I try to have a rationalistic approach to Astrology (else I couldn't be able to persuade myself I'm not ranting when I talk of Astrology) and in my opinion the issue of which objects affect what is everything but solved. There's just not enough experimentation among astrologers and everything seems based just in traditions, ancient or modern - opinions after all as long as they are not backed by a corpus of experimentation.

I'm tempted to think that everything that moves over there alters the electromagnetic Solar and Earth fields in one way or another. The macrocosmos has a different shape every minute and therefore the microcosmos also do (or vice versa, if you wish).

But we are still very far from the day we will be able to read in the sky with certainty. That's why most astrologers have an "intuitive" approach.

Still, you could make charts with the seven traditional planets and get many answers, and you can use a whole array of asteroids and (if you don't go mad in the attempt) get good answers too.

Personally, I use Ceres a lot. I think that important events like the so-called discovery of America are not properly described without Ceres. Ceres seem to reflect Earth in the skies (but it's also sort of Jovian), maybe it's the astrological archetype of "Mother Earth". But I wouldn't be able to assign it any clear rulership.

I'm also unsure of the "definitive" planetary status (in Astrological perspective) of Pluto (and therefore Xena) but it's quite clear that Pluto (or Pluto-Charon, if you wish) has a strong significance in Astrological terms. so will probably be the case off Xena when it's more studied.

In the end it's a matter of simplification: the lower the resolution: the less detailed the picture, the greater the resolution: the more confuse the mess. When chosing to take this or that planet or planetoid, the astrologer is applying resolution levels or even color filters to an image that otherwise may be too complex to understand.

In any case, the map is not the territory and Astrology tries to get oriented by means of reading a map. Should we mark in the map all peaks that are greater than 1,000 km or anything over 200 m.? Should we mark only towns over 1 million people, those over 100,000 or any village with more than 100 people? You choose. Too many dots will render the map unreadeable, too few may be excessively simplistic.

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