So I’m really enjoying teaching my NCGR Level 1 class at Parks and Recreation here in Halifax. Everyone has been having fun, they have gotten really good at finding the personality in the chart, ( we just did “can you guess who…” – Muhammad Ali – this evening) they can do basic time checks and even draw the chart by hand!

But last week and this week we had to finally knuckle down and do the MATH.

It was hard watching the light go out in their eyes, watch the frustration and the head scratching…. this is not the easiest stuff in the world! Indeed, many would say we are all wasting our time, that computers do it all now and we don’t have to bother…. and at times I am almost swayed by that idea….

But then I consider how critical it is for us as astrologers to be able to viscerally grasp the steps to a chart erection, to have a clear understanding of why we do each step and to spot ( and correct) any errors in the resulting chart. Computers, you know, are a smart as toast! If we type garbage in, we get garbage out. So those of us who have run the gauntlet of chart calculation are much better placed to spot and correct errors.

We don’t want our professional credentials to be outdated and inappropriate, but I am making the case here that requiring knowledge of Celestial Math and Geocentric Astronomy of our up and coming young professionals is a case of being cruel to be kind. They need the breadth of understanding this discipline offers, because at some point they in turn will need to explain it to the next generation. If we water it down now, then who will carry the torch forward?

It is hard work, more than a bit confusing, but my money is on my students: we will get there – and just like Everest, the view will be fabulous!


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