Part II: The Origins of Longitude and Latitude

©2000 by Angel Z. Thompson

Astrology gives meaning to time and helps us understand events and human nature. However, astrology is basically an abstract discipline of the mind, removed from life by paper and symbols. As a result, astrology doesn't always work the way we think it should. Location astrology is a concrete expression of planetary energy. It is not removed from awareness but becomes part of life's experience. When we position ourselves in the place of the planets on earth rather than looking at them in the sky or symbolically on paper, we stimulate the energy of the planet and can experience it's power in your body, mind and emotions.

Traditional Astrology is a study of movement through time. The radical chart is picture of the planets as they are arranged in the heavens at the moment of birth and is connected to earth by the longitude and latitude of the location. Your position on earth determines the arrangement of the planets because where you are determines what you are able to see. For example, at 9:00 am PST in California, the sun appears to be rising. At the exact same moment in New York, it is 12 noon and the sun is high in the sky. Placement colors the phenomena of time.

The radical chart is connected to earth through a specific longitude and latitude. When the longitude and latitude change, the chart also changes. The planets are exactly the same but the connection to the earth, or the zodiac wheel, is different. For example, a birth in California at 9:00 am has the sun in the l2th house while another birth, at the same moment, in New York has the sun in the l0th house because of the difference in time.

Life only happens where you are. We all have had the experience of going to another place really feeling like a 'different' person. In New York, we get that 'New York state of mind'. In Los Angeles, the sun and sea helps us relax and slow down. Different places can bring out different aspects of identity. When you are in a location different from your place of birth, or when you move away from your place of birth, a "Relocation" chart shows another aspect of your personality.

A relocated chart is calculated using the longitude and latitude of the new location, and adjusting the time to compensate for any difference. (When it is 6:00 PM in LA, it is 9:00 PM in New York). The relocated chart is set for the new longitude and latitude and the time of birth is adjusted so it aligns with the time of the new location. This does not change the position of the planets but it does change the wheel with a new ascendant, Midheaven and house cusps and because the angles change, planets can gain or lose power and influence.

This makes astrology a moveable feast and your destiny multifaceted. If you don't like your chart, change your location and you change your chart. Change your latitude, change your attitude."

If you want to see how your life would be in different locations, you could spend all day, relocating your chart to different places. Alternatively, you could use an Astro*Carto*Graphy Map. An A*C*G map doesn't look like a typical chart with a wheel, signs of the zodiac, houses, and aspects. Instead, it is a flat map of the world, with vertical lines drawn through it. Each line marks the places on earth where each planet reaches maximum angularity or because of relocation, where each planet would be in one of the angular houses (1st, 4th, 7th or l0th houses).

The angles are the most powerful spots in the chart. Planets positioned on the angles have maximum expression and power. Their action is made manifest in the world of physical phenomena and their qualities are the most visible and obvious characteristics expressed by the individual. The power of planets in succedent and cadent houses, by and large, is latent, hidden, below the surface, sub or unconscious. The energy of these planets is fomenting, brewing, forming and it is only when they come to the angles (either by progression, direction or diurnal motion) that their energy will be unleashed.

A complete and comprehensive understanding of the natal chart is essential in order to determine the effect of the planet when it becomes angular. Usually, it is beneficial for a planet to be on an angle because it stronger, and will be more active in the individual's life For example: A premature baby, born in CST, had Sun, Mars and Mercury in the l2th house, (potential for a weak constitution) and almost died. Relocated to California, the Sun, Mars, and Mercury moved to the first house (potential for a very strong constitution) and lived.

An individual, born in Los Angeles, had the Sun in the secretive and hidden eighth house and was agoraphobic. Relocating to New York moved the Sun into the angular seventh house and he became more outgoing and confident.

Sometimes, it is better for the planet to be off the angle. For example: JFK had a presidential chart in Boston, but in Dallas, Texas dangerous aspects of his chart became angular and he was assassinated. An individual born in Los Angeles, had the Sun and Jupiter in the angular fourth house and was completely dominated by his mother, who was overprotective. When he relocated to New York, the Sun and Jupiter moved into the third house which gave him more freedom of expression. He was now able to integrated the powerful energy heretofore projected onto the mother and became a world famous psychic.

In some cases, a person will relocate in order to escape a natal prophecy. Bruce Lee was born in San Francisco, and in order to escape the family curse, his father relocated him to Hong Kong where he would be safe. And he was safe until he moved back to San Francisco where he died, The family curse sealed his fate, Similarly, Christopher Reeves was born with EST, in New York. When he relocated to PST, in Hollywood, he became Superman. When he returned to Virginia and EST, he fulfilled a natal prophecy, becoming quadriplegic.

What if there is no possibility of relocation, or a planetary line goes through an undesirable or inaccessible place? You can still take advantage of this technique by using the law of correspondence. Don't want to move to Siberia? Listen to Russian music, eat snow cones and frozen fish, exchange letters with a pen pal from Omsk, watch Dr. Zivago, or use your imagination to bring a bit of Siberia into your home "If the mountain won't come to Mohammed, Mohammed must go to the mountain."

Another technique that enables us to take the planets from the sky and place them on the earth is called "Local Space Astrology". In a Local Space Chart there are no signs, houses or aspects. Instead the Sun, Moon and planets are calculated by a space-oriented technique called azimuth and altitude and drawn around a 360 degree circle, like a compass. The planets are placed according to their direction on earth. This gives a map of the horizon surrounding a birthtime or an event, a circle in which all the planets play out their individual roles within a specific environment.

When you place furniture, equipment or yourself on the planetary lines the energy of the planet can be felt and experienced. For example, if you place your computer on your Pluto line, it might act mysteriously, breaking down and causing you grief. The same computer, placed on the Uranus or Mercury line works much better. Placing the dining room table on Saturn's line might cause indigestion every time you eat. The same table, on a Venus line, will bring more enjoyment to all your meals.

What if a planetary direction originates in a place that is impossible to utilize, for example, the Sun point is in a closet? Don't give up, thinking you can't bring the Sun into your life. Remember the following: Directions have wide orbs so you don't have to be exactly on the compass number; somewhere in the general area will be sufficient. Next, all directions run on a straight line. NORTH eventually becomes SOUTH, Northeast becomes Southwest and so on which means that anywhere along the continuum will activate the line. Just make sure that the furniture or yourself faces the direction you desire. For example, you want to place your dining table on a Venus line but Venus's direction is NORTH and the dining area is at the SOUTH end of the room. Place the table so the head of the table faces NORTH and Venus.

Sometimes it is impossible to move the furniture so, just like in A*C*G, by using the law of correspondences, we can use items that represent the planet, placing them where we want that planetary energy. If the dining room table is on the Saturn line and can't be moved, using copper accessories or a silvery blue tablecloth will bring Venus to the table.

A word of caution: Each horoscope is unique. In some charts, Saturn brings peace and prosperity while in others, Saturn brings trouble and woe. In some charts Venus is light-hearted and cheerful while in other charts Venus is indulgent and lazy. Be sure to study the horoscope carefully to determine which planets have the most positive effect in the individual horoscope. These well-placed planets should be accentuated and made more powerful through the use of their colors and objects. Poorly placed planets can be rendered harmless and even helpful by utilizing their lines for non-problematic areas. For example, a stressful Saturn is no good in a dressing room but can serve effectively as a place where the valuables are stored. A telephone placed on a Pluto line may break down again and again though a vibrator used for sex will function perfectly.

To try this interesting technique, you need a local space chart. This can be generated by a computer program or you can draw it yourself Start with a 360 degree circle, and use the Midheaven, which is due south, as the starting point. The Midheaven is the only point in the chart that corresponds to the actual compass. Next, mark the North, which is opposite. Extending from the Midheaven, each 45 degrees will mark another direction (the East will be 90 degrees from the Midheaven. Then, using your natal planets as a reference, place planets in their new compass directions. This is only about 70% accurate but since each direction spans 45 degrees, it is close enough for 'field work' or when a computer report is not available.

Regardless of the method used to obtain the local space map, the next step is to draw a diagram of either the entire building or just one room and, using a compass to help you, determine the direction the front door faces by standing in the doorway and looking out. This is called the "facing direction" and from it, you can determine which directions fall into what part of the space. For example, if the entry door faces SOUTH, place the local space map within the interior with the SOUTH aligned to the SOUTH facing entry. If the entry faces WEST, align the WEST point with the entry door. Now discover where each planet is located in your home or office. Local Space Astrology gives meaning to space and helps maximize the potential of your planets.

To further refine these techniques, we use Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese art of placement. Feng Shui is a study of energy and how it affects the spaces we occupy. Inherent in this study is a deep understanding of the characteristics and personality of the eight directions. Each direction is associated with an element, a planet, a color, a shape, and literally hundreds of correspondences.

Understanding the effect of the planets on physical space is a way to experience your horoscope in your home, office, or anywhere you are, giving you the opportunity to enhance or diminish planetary energy..

Want more love in your life? Relocate to a place were Venus is in its own or a favorable house. Or, use your A*C*G map and go to the place where Venus is angular. Or, use your local space chart to position yourself on your Venus line at home or work. Or use feng shui and colors or objects to enhance the directions of love and affection.

As we take the stars from the sky and position them on earth, we enrich our astrological understanding of the power of place. We don't have to be victims of our horoscopes. We stand poised between Heaven & Earth as the techniques of spatial astrology help us enhance every area of life and enable us to change destiny into a "moveable feast".

See Part I here.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Angel Thompson is a well known astrologer and feng shui practitioner who for the past twenty years has been building the bridge between Western astrology and Chinese philosophy. Her approach and her interpretation is humanistic yet practical. She combines the location techniques of astrology with the solutions and cures of compass school feng shui to create harmonious spaces for her clients. Angel is the acclaimed author of Feng Shui, How to Achieve the Most Harmonious Arrangement of Your Home and Office, published by St. Martin's Press in 1996, which is now in its sixth printing! To order a copy or to find out about Angel's services, visit her Web Page or send e-mail.

CREDITS: The background tile is by ABC Giant.