Are you familiar with the work of the UK-based astrologer Drew Biggin? If you’re not, let me tell you a little about him. Better yet, you can check out his blog at No Nonsense Astrology – So Long Sun Signs. As the name suggests, Drew’s slant on astrology is that it’s more, much more than just sun signs. As a Neo-astrologer, Drew’s specialty is examining charts with a focus on the Gauquelin sectors. The sectors are named after Michel Gauquelin, a French psychologist and statistician who made a lasting contribution to the field of astrology. Drew kindly agreed to tell us more about the use Gauquelin sectors in astrology.
Michel Gauquelin and the 36 Sectors
Michel Gauquelin, founder of Neo-Astrology, wanted to take a serious, scientific look at the effects of the heavenly bodies on human behaviour. This meant abandoning the traditional 12 houses. Instead, for statistical purposes, he divided the chart into 36 sectors; sectors which represented nothing but pieces of sky.
To his amazement, he found that some, not all, of these sectors were particularly powerful – these are known as Plus Zones. Gauquelin found that:
- Scientists/physicians were often born with Saturn in a Plus Zone.
- Sports champions were often born when Mars was in a Plus Zone.
- Actors were often born when Jupiter was in a Plus Zone.
- Writers were often born with the Moon in a Plus Zone.
The fascinating thing about Plus Zones is that they are all grouped around the astrological angles – the Ascendant and Midheaven (the most powerful zones) and the Descendant and IC (slightly weaker, but still strong). It seemed that the ancients were right to place emphasis on the Four Pillars of the Sky. However, their judgement was slightly off.
The ancients believed that the most powerful areas of the sky were the Angular houses – the First, Fourth, Seventh, and Tenth houses. They believed the houses following the angles – the Twelfth, Ninth, Sixth, and Third – to be weak, or Cadent.
Gauquelin discovered the opposite – while parts of the Angular houses were indeed strong (the latter areas, closest to the angle), he found that planets seemed to have the most powerful impact on character, and, as a result, vocation, when they were in the supposedly weak houses – especially, the Twelfth and Ninth.
Grain of Gold
While the ancients were wrong about which houses were the most powerful, it seems that some of their planetary interpretations were correct. Blood-red Mars did make people more assertive. Jupiter did give people jovial temperaments. Saturn did make people quieter, and saturnine. And the Moon did make people express their feelings more.
However, Gauquelin found no evidence to support the influence of the Sun, Mercury, or the outer planets. That doesn’t mean that they don’t have any effect, it just means that we may be a little off when it comes to our interpretations.
Sadly, he could find no evidence of the zodiac affecting personality. Nor could he find evidence supporting the traditional/modern house meanings.
Mysticism Vs Maths
While some astrologers may argue that there’s no place for number-crunching when it comes to the heavens, the fact remains that Gauquelin did prove that there was a reason to believe in astrology. For that he should have been applauded. Instead, he was ridiculed by some scientists, and completely ignored by many astrologers – clearly those who still insist that the Twelfth is the home of bad spirit and oxen have turned a blind eye to his advice.
Michel Gauquelin took his own life in 1991. While his books slowly go out of print, the sales of sun sign/love sign/Jungian astrology books thrive.
Sad, but, in a world where sun sign columnists are millionaires, inevitable.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Drew Biggin is a Neo-Astrologer and the creator and writer of No Nonsense Astrology.com.