November 24, 2015

CASTING AND READING HARMONIC CHARTS



Harmonic charts are like no other charts and have their own special set of rules, but they are few, and well worth learning because harmonics are some of the most accurate predictive tools in the astrologer’s toolbox. They are so useful that they can rectify a chart in minutes when a narrow span of time is known (born at breakfast, born at dinnertime), or if choosing between two times (Was John born at 7 A.M. or 7 P.M.?), and can reveal distinctions between twins.

There are only two places online, of which I’m aware, to observe them in use. One was the website of Dymock Brose. [1] The other is the website of Alice McDermott, one of our most knowledgeable and notable contemporary astrologers. [2]

To novice astrologers, harmonics can seem daunting. The planets don’t adhere to the normal rules. In "normal" astrology, we are bound by the constraints of time and space that require Mercury and Venus to remain within forty-five degrees of the sun at all times. Not so with harmonics. They may be anywhere in the chart. In "normal" astrology, the moon’s nodes are always opposite each other. Not so in harmonics. They often make no aspect to each other at all. In "normal" astrology, the midheaven is the zenith of the chart, and it also appears to be significant in harmonics, however, there’s also a floating midheaven which may appear anywhere, and the house in which it floats is always significant.

Harmonics provide a way of seeing the underlying patterns in a chart. Divide everything in the chart by two, and the oppositions stick out. Divide everything by five and all the quintiles appear. We can divide it by any number of which we can conceive, and each has an implication of its own. For instance, the fifth harmonic is associated with knowledge and skill, the seventh with creativity, and the eighth with effort, energy and its expression in the world. I recommend reading Working With Astrology (which also covers midpoints and Astro*Carto*Graphy) by Harding and Harvey. [3] SolarFire astrology software (and probably others with which I’m not familiar) will calculate these charts for you. If you don’t have astrology software, you can create them free of charge at Astro.com by using the Extended Chart Selections options. You can also calculate them by hand, but it’s tedious.

The most useful to me, and one of my personal favorites, are age harmonics, where we divide the chart by our age (or by whatever age we’d like to see), and the most definitive aspect reveals in a glance what’s important for the year. Very often, the most definitive is the closest aspect between two planets, but it might also be a stellium or a major configuration. Prove this to yourself now by calculating the harmonics for the age you married, or the age of some other highly significant year in your life. But first de-select all the asteroids, fixed stars and other extras with which young astrologers like to clutter their charts. Use only the ten planets of our solar system, the moon’s nodes and the part of fortune. When you’ve stripped the chart down to those basics, then you may add back Chiron, the eastpoint and the vertex for a second look. If you simply must have all that clutter, experiment with it later. For now, keep it simple. Once you’ve cast the harmonic chart using your known time of birth, cast it again using a birth time a mere five minutes off. See the huge difference?

The other harmonic charts I use frequently are daily age harmonics. This is a harmonic chart calculated for whatever portion of the year we’d like to see into, focusing in on a specific day, and read the same way as age harmonics.

To get the harmonic number for a specific day:

         1. enter 365.24220461 into your calculator’s memory, and then clear the entry field.


2. Now retrieve the Julian day of your birth.

In Solar Fire:

    • Open your chart
    • Click on Reports
    • Click on Chart Analysis
    • Near the top right, find "JDE = " a seven digit number followed a decimal and six more digits. If you were born at any time in the 1900’s through 2099, the number should begin with a 24. Use only the numbers that precede the decimal.


Online:
Use the Julian Day converter at http://aa.usno.navy.mil/data/docs/JulianDate.php I tried several others and this is the only one that gave the right answer quickly and simply.
  
Ephemeris:

You can also use your ephemeris, but it will require some counting and it’s important to understand that some of them use a different starting point from software. Don’t mix apples and oranges. You are likely to find the number at the bottom of the page where the phenomenon is listed.


3. Now retrieve the Julian Day of the day in question, past or future. Want to see what the harmonics were on your 16th birthday? Your wedding day? The day you finally broke up with that bum? Call this your target date.


4. Subtract the Julian Date of your birth from the Julian Date of your target date.

5. Divide the answer by the 365.24220461 stored in your calculator’s memory. Click on "="

6. The result should be your age at the time in question, followed by several digits after the decimal point. Use the first six of those numbers, and put them in the harmonic field of your software program.

Here’s an example.

Stevie Nicks won a Grammy on February 23, 1978 Julian: 2443563

Stevie Nicks birth date is May 26, 1948 Julian:                  2432697

Equals                                                                                10866

Divide by 365.24220461

Equals  29.750121

29.750121 was her age and the fraction of the year which had passed since her previous birthday. Because her birthday is in May, and she won the award nine months after her 29th birthday and three months prior to her 30th, the fraction following the decimal is a high number. Her next age harmonic following this one would be 30. If she had won the Grammy the week after her 29th birthday, the age harmonic number would look more like this: 29.019099. If she had won it the week before her 30th birthday, it would look more like this: 29.9718992.

Casting a Daily Age Harmonic chart takes a bit more effort, but it’s not difficult, and once you’ve done a few of them, it becomes second nature.

[1] members.ozemail.com.au/~dymock  (If link breaks, try the Wayback Machine.)

[2] aliceportman.com

[3] Harding, Michael and Harvey, Charles. Working with Astrology The Psychology of Harmonics, Midpoints and Astro*Carto*Graphy. Arkana Books, a division of Penguin Group. 1990

© Lesia Valentine 2016 All rights reserved. Do not copy or distribute without written permission.

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