Helena Avelar (–2021)

Författare till On the Heavenly Spheres

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Okay, count me impressed. Avelar and Ribeiro have pretty much written the book I've been looking for for a few years now: a modern introductory text to traditional astrology. The authors have pulled together the basics from several ancient and classical sources and have written them up in a style that 21st-century readers will probably be more comfortable with. They have also been generous with illustrations and just about every point they want to make comes with a helpful diagram. Unlike many astrology books, they don't separate natal astrology out but refer to natal, horary, mundane, and elective throughout.

Regrettably, there are also some jarring flaws. For one thing, there's no index. The table of contents is detailed and it's followed by an excellent list of the illustrations, diagrams, and tables. These help, but they're just not the same as an index. If you want to quickly look up at what point "under the beams" turns into "combust," good luck. The book also needed another round with a proofreader. While most books have the odd typo here and there, some of this book's typos were in an important table or changed the meaning of sentences. Plus, there was the occasional just-plain-wrong statement. (Uranus can too be seen with the naked eye. I'm sorry if that messes up the rationale behind the perfect symmetry of the traditional system, but making factually incorrect statements about matters of science isn't going to help astrology's credibility.) I found the general tone of traditional = good; modern = bad irritating, as I have with other works. I understand the authors needed to clearly make the distinction between traditional and modern astrology, but sniping at modern practice seemed unnecessary.

But despite these criticisms, I really did enjoy this book. I got a lot out of their discussions of the primary qualities and the Parts, including information I haven't found in other texts. And it's hard to overstate the effect of reading about a difficult topic in modern English: I could devote all of my energies to understanding the astrology instead of also having to work my way through arcane sentence structures. It was a disappointment to come to the end of the book and find that the authors only gave a taste of what delineating a chart would be like in the traditional manner, but they hint that that will be the focus of a future book. Studying everything in this book may hold me until then.
… (mer)
Silvernfire | Jan 26, 2012 |


½ 4.7