Hermetic Astrology II



Astrology and Reincarnation
(1987; second edition 2007)

Astrological Biography
(1989; second edition 2007)

Volume II of Hermetic Astrology is described below.

To order this volume click here and here.

The Star of the Magi and the Life of Christ
(1991; second edition 1998)

Robert Powell
- Towards a new Wisdom of the Stars -
Volume II: Astrological Biography

(San Rafael/CA: Sophia Foundation Press, 2007)

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

(From Longfellow's poem "A Psalm of Life")

Author's acknowledgements


With grateful acknowledgements to Will Sucher (1902-1985) for the encouragement he gave to my research work, to friends who contributed their help in one way or another, and to Professor Konrad Rudnički for his preface to this second edition.


Hermetic Astrology
Volume II
Astrological Biography


CHAPTER 1: Karmic Relationships
CHAPTER 2: Further Aspects of Karmic Relationships
CHAPTER 3: An Example of Astrological Biography
CHAPTER 4: The Spiral of Life (up to 21)
CHAPTER 5: The Spiral of Life (21 onwards)
CHAPTER 6: The Hermetic-Astrological Science of Destiny
CHAPTER 7: The Hermetic House System
CHAPTER 8: Uranus, Neptune and Pluto
CHAPTER 9: The Second Coming and the New Age
CHAPTER 10: The Hermetic Calendar

APPENDIX I: The 7-year Periods (Septennaries)
APPENDIX II: Computations
APPENDIX  III: The Jewish Calendar


Preface to the second edition

Konrad Rudnički

In the first chapters of this book we read simultaneously from two directions. We read the life stories of Richard Wagner, Friedrich Nietzsche, and King Ludwig II of Bavaria in their incarnations in the nineteenth century as well as in their previous incarnations. At the same time we read about the planetary configurations accompanying the conception, birth, and death of these individuals, as well as about configurations which marked various events in their lives. We can experience that the two perspectives - biographical and astrological - not only run parallel but also are strongly interconnected. However, it becomes clear that no biographies of these personalities could be written on the basis of astrological computations alone.

The author shows that the destiny of individuals is certainly connected with the positions of the celestial bodies, that some regularities, some ties, some rules can be observed here, but that notwithstanding this, no strict regularities exist. Moreover, he indicates that without a certain degree of clairvoyance no serious astrological studies of destiny can be carried out. The idea is even expressed that real astrology requires initiation. The description of striking configurations of celestial bodies in relation to the dramatic course of life of some well-known personalities reads as a good piece of fine literature.

This work shows us how to calculate hermetic charts, horoscopes of conception and birth (relating to the embryonic period), horoscopes of death, and how to apply these various horoscopes to describing the spiral of life concerning the unfolding of life in seven-year periods, a line of development which reveals many regularities. The book demonstrates how the stellar configurations during the embryonic period are reflected again and again in the subsequent periods of life.

Completely new for most readers is the part of the book dealing with the last three known planets in the solar system: Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto. The author is of the opinion that the names given to them are deeply meaningful in the light of spiritual science. He draws upon Greek mythology, particularly upon Orphic cosmology, to extend Rudolf Steiner's description of cosmic evolution. This book by Robert Powell has many important merits and is certainly a most interesting one!

Professor Konrad Rudnički
Astronomical Observatory
Jagiellonian University
Cracow, Poland


To the Reader

This work is addressed to those who are seeking a true astrology such as was cultivated in the mystery temples of antiquity. It has little in common with the popular astrology of today, which for the most part represents a profanation of the sacred science of the stars. Hermetic astrology is intended to serve as a stepping-stone to the mystery wisdom of the stars, in the spirit of the Mercury Star Journal, which the author edited from 1975 to 1981. Mercury = Hermes, and in a deeper sense Hermetic Astrology can be viewed as a continuation of the impulse that was represented in the Mercury Star Journal.

The Mercury Star Journal came into being in order to continue the Star Journal (1965-1974) of Willi Sucher, whose life's work was devoted towards the development of a new star wisdom (astrosophy). Owing to the esoteric nature of With Sucher's work, however, it has not become widely known. Similarly, owing to the intimate nature of the content of Hermetic Astrology, especially on account of the indications concerning the previous incarnations of various historical personalities, this work belongs ideally to a circle of friends who are prepared to go beyond an intellectual appraisal, to allow the content to become a concern of the heart. It is in this spirit - for those who bear the impulse towards a new star wisdom in their hearts - that this work is being published.

Thereby it is hoped that the research presented in the following pages may serve as a stimulus to encourage others to take up hermetic astrology. In order to avoid any misunderstanding, however, a word of warning must be added here - at the outset - concerning the interpretation of the results of this research. The astrological "laws" of reincarnation discovered by the author and published in this work do not enable previous incarnations to be calculated. For, the mystery of reincarnation is inaccessible to intellectual speculation. No amount of speculative reasoning combined with computational skill can ever penetrate this mystery. It is along other paths - whereby, instead of the brain, the heart becomes an organ of knowledge - that knowledge of reincarnation becomes attainable. In this deeper sense is this work truly a concern of the heart. And those who read it from this point of view will recognize that the contents of the following pages are only scattered fragments serving as indicators on the way towards a new wisdom of the stars. Truth to tell, this new wisdom of the stars can hardly be communicated in book form; for it is a matter of inner knowledge and experience attained during the course of spiritual growth. But for those who feel called to embark upon this path of inner development leading to a new wisdom of the stars, Hermetic Astrology may help to provide a basic orientation with regard to the essential nature of the human being's relationship to the world of stars.

Volume II of Hermetic Astrology supplements and develops further the research findings described in Volume I. The two main findings in Volume I, arising from astrological reincarnation research, are:

(1) the sidereal zodiac is the authentic astrological zodiac; and

(2) the hermetic chart (based on the Egyptian-Tychonic system) is of

major significance in the field of astrological reincarnation research. The hermetic chart forms a foundation for hermetic astrology, which comprises a new science of destiny (karma). Whereas Volume I ("Astrology and Reincarnation") is concerned with the nature of birth and death (the mystery of reincarnation), Volume II focuses upon the course of life between birth and death (how karma comes to expression in biography).

Volume II can be read independently of Volume I, provided that the two findings referred to above are acknowledged, at least as a "working hypothesis. To begin with in Volume II ("Astrological Biography"), the question of karmic relationships, i.e. relationships between human beings from one incarnation to the next, is examined with reference to some historical examples. Then the science of astrological biography is discussed, and some viewpoints concerning the astrological houses and the outermost planets (Uranus, Neptune and Pluto) are outlined. Lastly, the spiritual aspect of hermetic astrology - considered as a spiritual path - is looked at in relation to spiritual impulses active in the twentieth century.



"Who am I? Where do I come from? What is my task in life?" These are fundamental questions - existential questions - which many people in our time are asking.

Astrology has long sought to answer these questions, and - as many have found - it goes a long way towards providing insight into the basic questions of human existence. Yet astrology - as it has developed up until now - has its limitations. This is because the key to astrology - that which explains the foundations of this ancient science - has not been taken into account up until now. The key to astrology is reincarnation, and it is this key which is taken into consideration and applied in hermetic astrology.

Reincarnation is not only the key to astrology - it also helps to answer the existential questions posed above.

"Who am I?" The answer to this question provided by traditional astrology is expressed in terms of the horoscope of birth. Hermetic astrology goes a stage further by viewing the birth horoscope in terms of the horoscope of death from the previous incarnation. (The relationship between the horoscope of birth and that of death in the previous incarnation comes to expression in terms of the "laws" of reincarnation.) It is in gaining insight into previous incarnations that the deeper answer to the question "Who am I ?" lies, and it is into this mysterious realm - that of reincarnation - that hermetic astrology endeavours to penetrate. Hermetic astrology thus represents an extension of traditional astrology - extending it to take account of previous incarnations.

"Where do I come from?") To look back into previous incarnations is an initial step towards answering this question. A further step is to look into the realm in which the human being dwells between incarnations - the realm of the planetary spheres, reaching up to the zodiacal sphere of fixed stars. Hermetic astrology seeks not only to take account of previous incarnations, but also of the human being's cosmic life - his cosmic existence in the realm of the planets and the zodiac between incarnations on the Earth.

"What is my task in life?" Knowledge acquired through looking back into previous incarnations should not be an end in itself. It becomes of value when it is directed towards the future. In this respect hermetic astrology is essentially future-orientated, in that it seeks to view the sequence of the human being's earthly incarnations in the context of his mission in relation to the Earth and mankind. The nature of the human being's task in his present life can be understood from his previous incarnation(s), whereby in hermetic astrology an overview is sought - an overview of the human being's mission which unfolds step by step from incarnation to incarnation.

In embarking upon a study of hermetic astrology, the reader will find that he encounters a new world - a world with its own unique cosmological system. This was already known in the cosmology of the ancient Egyptians, but has long since been forgotten. However, there is a major difference from the days of ancient Egypt: since the Crucifixion and Resurrection the moral center of this cosmological world is Jesus Christ. He it is, who is to be found at the center of hermetic-astrological cosmology, and it is through Him - ultimately - that knowledge of previous incarnations is gained. For He is the Lord of karma, who has an overview of each human being's sequence of earthly incarnations, who knows each human being's mission, and who helps each human being to fulfil his karma (destiny). Hermetic astrology is essentially Christian astrology, for it looks to Him - the Lord of karma - as the ultimate source of all knowledge concerning reincarnation and human destiny.

The first volume of Hermetic Astrology provides an introduction to hermetic-astrological cosmology and reincarnation research. Thus, Volume I - Astrology and Reincarnation - opens up the domain of reincarnation and karma in the light of astrology. In addition, this volume contains what is possibly the world's first scientific proof of reincarnation, presented in terms of the first and second "laws" of reincarnation.

Volume II - Astrological Biography - is concerned with karmic relationships, i.e. with human relationships which are carried over from one incarnation to the next, and how destiny unfolds in the "spiral of life", where each ring of the spiral amounts to seven years of life. In Volume II, therefore, the foundations are laid for the hermetic-astrological science of destiny, which is something completely new in the history of astrology.

Hermetic astrology is a new science of the stars concerned with and based upon reincarnation, and embodying a new science of destiny. These two volumes are intended to serve as an introduction to this new science of the stars, for all those who are interested in the deeper, existential questions of life.



For many people interested in astrology who have read Hermetic Astrology Vol 1: Astrology and Reincarnation, since its publication in 1987, a central question has been: How reliable are the reincarnation examples given there? This question is of fundamental importance, since the whole basis of the research findings presented in Hermetic Astrology I, which form the foundation of a new astrology, depends upon the reliability of these rein-carnation examples. The principal research findings established in Her metic Astrology I may be summarized as follows: (1) the sidereal zodiac is the authentic astrological zodiac, since the reincarnation of the soul is guided by the movements of the Sun, Moon and planets through the signs of the sidereal zodiac; (2) it is not only the geocentric but also the helioc entric movements of the planets through the signs of the sidereal zodiac which are of importance for the birth configuration chosen by the reincar nating soul.

Substantial evidence for these research findings (1) and (2) could not have been arrived at without the study of numerous reincarnation exam ples, which the author carried out over a long period of time. It was for this purpose - and not for the sake of publicly revealing deep mysteries - that the step was taken of publishing the reincarnation examples given in Volume I. Moreover, as discussed at length in Volume I, the most import-ant principle of reincarnation research is moral development. For, it is through taking up a path of moral-spiritual development that each indi vidual is able to arrive for himself or herself at the truth of reincarnation statements - this being an essential step on the way towards carrying out reincarnation research.

Focusing now upon the question of the truth of the reincarnation state ments presented in this work on hermetic astrology, a distinction must be drawn between Volume I: Astrology and Reincarnation and Volume II: As trological Biography. Volume I includes a total of eighteen reincarnation examples (twelve in Table 18 and an additional six in Table 24). Of these examples, fourteen are referred to directly by Rudolf Steiner in his lec tures entitled Karmic Relationships, and another concerning himself is re ferred to indirectly. With respect to this latter example, in a confidential letter written by Rudolf Steiner on May 14, 1904, which was published in 1984 (see Rudolf Steiner, Complete Works, Vol. 264, p.55), he wrote: "In my earlier life several centuries ago a personality played the role of with-drawing me from a certain family situation and made it possible for me to take the necessary steps leading to my calling (in that life) as a Catholic priest." This confirms the research finding indicated in Hermetic Astrology I that there was no incarnation between the death of this Catholic priest on March 7, 1274 and Rudolf Steiner's birth on February 25, 1861 - see Table 18, reincarnation example (9)

In the case of reincarnation examples (10), (II) and (12) in Table 18 of Hermetic Astrology I, although also referred to indirectly by Rudolf Steiner in Karmic Relationships, they are essentially the result of inde pendent research. Thus these three reincarnation examples from Volume I must be distinguished from the remaining fifteen examples presented there. Whereas Rudolf Steiner is the direct source for these fifteen exam ples, he may not be held responsible for the other three. Thus, in consider ing the truth of the eighteen reincarnation examples listed in Hermetic As trology I, Rudolf Steiner is the "guarantor", so to say, of fifteen of these examples, the truth of which will not be disputed by anyone who is thor oughly acquainted with his life's work. But who can guarantee the truth of the other three reincarnation examples?

Here it is necessary to look more closely at the source of these three reincarnation examples. In fact, it is a matter of three different sources, all anonymous: two who communicated with the author (examples 10 and 11), and one who communicated with Willi Sucher (example 12). In each of these three cases the author applied not only hermetic-astrological methods for testing their validity (including the "laws" of reincarnation discussed in Hermetic Astrology I), but also the method of "biographical comparison". It is a basic truth of the working of karma (destiny) that each incarnation is a metamorphosis of the preceding incarnation(s), and that a biographical comparison of successive incarnations of an individu ality generally reveals certain underlying relationships between the biogra phies of the different incarnations. This is brought out in a remarkable way in the biographical studies of the reincarnation examples (from Ru dolf Steiner's Karmic Relationships) presented in the five-volume series Destiny in Repeated Earthly Lives (Schicksal in wiederholten Erdenleben), ed. Wolfgang Schuchhardt, Philosophisch-Anthroposophischer Verlag, Dornach, 1982-1987). In the last analysis, however, neither the method of biographical comparison nor the astrological comparison of birth and death horoscopes between different incarnations can give absolute cer tainty with regard to the validity of a reincarnation statement. Ultimately it is spiritual cognition - of a very highly developed kind - that can verify with absolute certainty the truth of a reincarnation statement.

Rudolf Steiner's entire life's work demonstrates that he had developed this high level of spiritual cognition, and therefore the fifteen reincarna tion examples in Hermetic Astrology I stemming directly from him are trustworthy on an altogether different level from the other three presented there. With regard to these three reincarnation examples, it is in each case a matter of inspiration stimulated by means of an intensive occupation with Rudolf Steiner's indications on the individualities concerned in these three examples. This means that there is no one "guarantor" of the truth of these three reincarnation examples, but the author nevertheless included them in Hermetic Astrology I together with the other fifteen exam ples, being convinced - through his own research - that they are funda mentally true.

Of these three examples, one (example 12, concerning Friedrich Nietzsche) is also included in the following pages comprising Volume II. Partly on account of this reincarnation example communicated by Willi Sucher, the author was enabled to conduct his own reincarnation re-search, some of the results of which are presented here in Volume II. Apart from this example concerning Friedrich Nietzsche, and apart from two further brief references (in Chapter 8 to President Woodrow Wilson and in Chapter 9 to Novalis - these being reincarnation examples stem ming from Rudolf Steiner), all the reincarnation examples presented in Volume II derive from the author's own reincarnation research. Thus the author is the "guarantor" of the truth of the reincarnation examples pre sented in the following pages. Whilst not claiming to be infallible, the au thor is nevertheless certain enough of the results of his own reincarnation research to be in a position to commit these findings to print. Again, as with the reincarnation examples presented in Volume I, it is not for the sake of publicly revealing deep mysteries that these findings are published here, but in order to clarify certain far-reaching issues.

In taking this step the author does not seek to claim that his capacity for reincarnation research can in any way be compared with the highly deve loped faculty of Rudolf Steiner. Nevertheless the author is fully conscious of the validity of his own findings through spiritual research, and for him it is a matter of certainty that he stands upon the secure foundation of truth. This level of certainty, however, is the result of years of careful and painstaking research. For the author - and in this respect he has been helped through studying and teaching mathematics for a number of years - the findings of his own reincarnation research are as trustworthy and certain as those of any tried and tested mathematical formula. Just as the truth of Pythagoras' theorem is self-evident to every mathematician, so the statements concerning reincarnation examples to be found in the follow ing pages are self-evident to the author, who has rigorously avoided all elements of speculation and fantasy in the research he has conducted. In this respect the author is the "guarantor" of the reincarnation research presented in Volume II, just as Rudolf Steiner is the "guarantor" of all but three of the reincarnation examples given in Volume I.

However, it is not the intention of the author to be taken as an "authority". He asks that his research findings be taken simply as indications, and that they be treated critically, but with open-mindedness to the possibility of their being true. Thus, the findings presented in the following pages should not be accepted unconditionally, but should be tested by the reader, each through his own sense for truth. It is essentially the quest for truth which motivates the author, and in his pursuit of a new astrology it is - he believes - above all insight that may serve as the foundation for a new science of the stars, and not superstition or belief in authority. It is in this spirit that Hermetic Astrology has been written. And it is the author's hope that these two volumes on hermetic astrology may serve as research mate rial that may be taken up to help insight to become the common founda tion linking all those concerned with the development of a new wisdom of the stars.

In this respect I feel united in a spirit of brotherhood with the many peo ple working with the cosmological ideas of Rudolf Steiner and the related research of Willi Sucher, including the American researcher Paul Platt, who has recently published (1986/87) a three-volume work entitled The Qualities of Time (Golden Stone Press, Box 233A RD2, Ghent, NY 12075, USA). Some of the questions touched upon in Hermetic Astrology are to be found also in Paul Platt's work. In fact, Paul Platt shares with myself a debt of gratitude to Willi Sucher (1902-1985), whose work has been an important stimulus to both of us.

For myself, I look to Willi Sucher as a prime source - if not the major source - of inspiration for my astrological work. And as indicated in the following pages, it is Willi Sucher who may be regarded as the original pi oneer of the science of astrological biography outlined in Hermetic Astrol ogy II. It is as a tribute to him - as the founder of a new science of the stars in the twentieth century - that I would like this work on astrological biography to be viewed.


Astrology and Reincarnation
(1987; second edition 2007)

Astrological Biography
(1989; second edition 2007)

To order either of these volumes click here and here.

For information on Volume I of Hermetic Astrology:

Astrology and Reincarnation
(1987; second edition 2007)

click here.

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