Firdaria: An Introduction


Firdaria: Image by Saturn and the Sun Astrology

Firdaria: An Introduction to the Life Periods of a Persian Time-Lord Technique

The purpose of this article is to introduce Firdaria, a timing technique of Persian origin. Although this time-lord technique is not of Hellenistic origin, it does make use of sect, a well-documented concept that, alongside traditional astrology, grows in popularity. Essentially, Firdaria are the nativity’s life periods, divided into uneven years by chronocrators. However, while Hellenistic techniques such as annual profections and zodiacal releasing do not emphasize the ascending and descending nodes, the Firdaria accentuate the nodal axis for specific periods (5 years in total). When activated, both planets and the nodes are considered to be equally important time-lords, comparable in fortitude to a progressed Sun and further activated by transits.

This article will introduce the reader to the Firdaria, define said concept, and explain its conditions. Of pertinence, it is important to note that this summary focuses more on the nodal variation of Firdaria as opposed to placing the nodal axis after the seven stars for both sects.

Life Periods of the Firdaria

The Firdaria are the periods of life governed by chronocrators or time-lords. Elucidated in Abu-Ma’shar’s On Solar Revolutions, Firdaria, a time-lord technique of Persian origin, unfurls the nativity into irregular chapters. Each of the Firdaria periods are divided into variable years with a punctuated time-lord: either one of the seven stars or one of the nodal points. Not unlike other traditional timing techniques, the quality of each firdar or life period is dependent upon the condition of the nativity’s activated chronocrator.

Firdaria, Sect, and Chaldean Order

The life periods of Firdaria are arranged according to the structure of sect and Chaldean order. As the celestial initiator, the sect luminary unravels the first firdar, and completes a seventh of its corresponding years in solitary rulership. After the sect light’s first isolated period, the luminary is accompanied by a fellow star or sub-ruler. Excluding the periods governed by the nodal axis (where no planetary sub-rulers intervene), after completing a seventh of their independently governed firdar periods, all planets are accompanied by sub-rulers.

Oronce Fine, Le sphere de monde: proprement dicte Cosmographie: manuscript, 1549, MS Typ 57. Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.

Chaldean Order: based on planetary speed, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Mars, Jupiter,and Saturn. The visual inclusion of the heptagram simply traces the planetary days, beginning with Monday (Moon), traced below to Mars (Tuesday), followed by Wednesday (Mercury, and so on, concluded (in this order) with Saturday (Saturn). This is not to be confused with descending Chaldean order, which places the stars in order from slowest (Saturn) to swiftest (Moon). Additionally, heptazone sequence begins with the Sun, followed by Venus, Mercury, Moon, Saturn, Jupiter, and Mars. When the heptagram for heptazone sequence is traced, the traditional planetary days begin with Sunday and end with Saturday. While heptazone sequence is not part of Firdaria, it is interesting to compare both orders.

The Years of the Alfidar

Some of Firdaria’s first documented descriptions are recorded in Abu-Ma’shar’s The Thousands, Great Introduction, and On Solar Revolutions. Of these three texts, On Solar Revolutions describes Firdaria in its clearest cohesion. Here, Abu-Ma’shar explains the numerical value assigned to the seven stars and the ascending/ descending nodes as follows:

“Each of the seven stars, and the Ascending and Descending Nodes, has certain determinate times, and each star administers to the native in accordance with its proper firdar. The firdar of the Sun, then, is 10 years; of Aphrodite, 8; of Hermes, 13; of the Moon, 9; of Kronos, 11; of Zeus, 12; of Ares, 7; of the Ascending Node, 3; of the Descending Node, 2 – altogether, they are 75.

In the case of diurnal nativity, then, the Sun takes the governorship of the first firdar, then Aphrodite, then Hermes, then the Moon, then Kronos, in accordance with the order of their zones. In the case of nocturnal nativities, the Moon takes the first firdar, then Kronos, then Zeus, then Ares, in accordance with the prior order.”

In accordance with sect and Chaldean order, Ma’shar assigns the planets and nodal axis specific numerical periods. Beginning with the Sun in day charts, there are 10 solar years, 8 for Venus, 13 for Mercury, 9 for the Moon, 11 for Saturn, 12 for Jupiter, and 7 for Mars. The same numerical correspondence applies to night charts, with its start initiated by the lunar sect light. For both sects, the ascending and descending nodes are given 3 and 2 years, respectively.

For nocturnal nativities, there is a nodal variation which places the ascending and descending nodes after Mars and before the Sun, coinciding with the early 40s (39-44). In part, this variation is proposed by Zoller, taking into account the circular arrangement of planetary sequence. Regarding diurnal nativities, the nodal axis directly proceeds planetary (Chaldean) order: nodal variation does not apply to diurnal nativities.

Kalynovych, Life As…

As previously discussed, after a principle star’s firdar period completes a seventh of its solitary rulership, sub-rulers accompany each planet (aside from the nodal axis, which has no sub-rulers). Ma-shar’s description of the sub-periods follows as such:

“Except that when one of the stars is governor, it itself manages a seventh of its proper years; then the remaining stars participate with it in a signification for good or bad things in accordance with a seventh of its own firdar. And the beginning will be from the star that has the firdar, while the star lying next under it will participate first, then the star following that one. — the reason for the participation of the remaining stars with the one star is that the years of the firdar of each star has been extracted from those that have a relation to the twelve zoidia; but in a peculiar manner, the Ascending and Descending Nodes, since they do not further participate with any star, assume the management only after the completion of the years of the seven stars and after the native has completed seventy years, because they do not have domiciles.”

Using Chaldean order, Firdaria sub-periods include the accompanying stars joining each sequential chronocrator. Additionally, during the 3 and 2 years of the ascending and descending nodes (after the native has completed 75 years) respectively, there is no inclusion sub-periods. The quality of the nodal axis depends upon the condition of its dispositor and pertinent transits. Upon completion of the 75-year period, in diurnal nativities, the cycle newly commences with the Sun.

Day Charts (Sect Light is the Sun)

Sun: 10 years, Venus: 8 years, Mercury: 13 years, Moon: 9 years, Saturn: 11 years, Jupiter: 12 years, Mars: 7 years. After Mars, the Nodes are included so that the ascending Node takes 3 years, and, finally, the descending Node takes 2 years.

* After the full completion of the planetary rulership sequence, the ascending and descending nodes are included, for the periods of 3 and 2 years, respectively. In total, this concludes a 75 year period, where the solar period would then commence anew.

Night Charts (Sect Light is the Moon)

Moon: 9 years, Mercury: 13 years, Venus: 8 years, Sun: 10 years, Mars: 7 years, Jupiter: 12 years, Saturn: 11 years. After Saturn, the Nodes are included so that the ascending Node takes 3 years, and, finally, the descending Node takes 2 years.

* After the full completion of the planetary rulership sequence, the ascending and descending nodes are included, for the periods of 3 and 2 years, respectively. In total, this concludes a 75 year period, where the lunar period would then commence anew.

Night Charts and Nodal Variation

Following the order mentioned above, a variation for nocturnal charts is to place the ascending and descending nodes after Mars and before the Sun. As mentioned earlier, the nodal axis coincides with the early 40s, 39-44. It is interesting that ‘middle-age’ or the ‘mid-life crisis’ occurs during the start of the descending node. Because their is no corresponding domicile for the nodal axis, as Ma’shar explains, judging the quality of the nodal axis depends on the condition of the nativity’s dispositor.

It is said that Robert Zoller had difficulties with interpreting the correct order of the firdar for nocturnal charts. Bonatti subtlety suggests that the nodes should be placed after Mars, but, given that wording becomes obscure, it is difficult to ascertain. However, when compared with the guidelines presented in Ma-shar’s On Solar Revolutions, the nodal years are placed directly after the seven stars. Therefore, as a cautionary perspective, it is important to evaluate, discern the efficacy of techniques with variable applications, such as Firdaria, prior to its practical application.

Calculating Firdaria Periods

Calculating Firdaria periods is simplistic, and can be performed manually (although software programs and websites like provide automated calculations). Essentially, in compliance with sect and Chaldean order, Firdaria uses the seven stars and the nodal axis to unfurl the native’s life. Since the Sun rules day nativities, begin with the Sun for day charts. If the nativity is nocturnal, begin with the Moon.

The table below lists each period for both sects (beginning with the Sun and Moon, respectively). For the nocturnal nativity, I have included the nodal variation after Mars and before the Sun. As previously mentioned, the diurnal nativity remains unchanged, with the nodal axis at the end of the 75 years cycle. Upon completing a 75 year cycle, again, both sects begin with their respective luminaries. Note that the nodal variation for nocturnal charts is optional, and can be placed at the end of the 70 year cycle.

A Diurnal Chart with an Activated Sun Firdar

Along with the place, sign, aspects, and rulership, the natal condition of the Sun will be a primordial factor in determining the subjective quality of the solar life period. When in a solar Firdaria coupled with a Saturn sub-period, Saturn will saturate the solar experience, for better or worse, depending on its natal condition. If Saturn happens to be in optimal position, for example, including place (its 12th Joy), in its domicile/ exaltation, well aspected, and even agreeable term, the native can experience a successfully bountiful (Sun) period spent in diligent laboriousness (Saturn). In other words, the macro-experience of the solar Firdaria is colored by the condition of Saturn, the micro-delineator of the Firdaria. Once again, for nodal delineations, the qualitative condition of the period depends on the nodal dispositor.

Combining Firdaria and Annual Profections

Annual profections can often echo the themes experienced via Firdaria and its sub-periods. Judging the yearly experience of profections alongside the Firdaria can provide further insight into the quality of any given year, depending on the condition of both time-lords. Using the malefic-contrary-to sect for this example, a Saturn profection year in a nocturnal nativity being, simultaneously, the descending node’s dispositor, can indicate a period of subjectively challenging experiences. Depending on the places punctuated by Saturn, and given the malefic’s natal condition, these experiences can be more or less significant.

The Firdaria: Summary

The Firdaria are the periods of life governed by chronocrators or time-lords. Elucidated in Abu-Ma’shar’s On Solar Revolutions, each of the Firdaria periods are divided into variable years with a punctuated time-lord: either one of the seven stars or one of the nodal points. Not unlike other traditional timing techniques, the quality of each firdar or life period is dependent upon the condition of the nativity’s activated chronocrator.


Abū Ma-shar, On Solar Revolutions

Birchfield, Steven, 2005,

Copyright © 2019 Saturn and the Sun Astrology. All rights reserved.

Classifying Signs in Traditional Astrology

In astrology, sign classification systems promote the qualitative understanding of any given (sign-based) relationship. The purpose of this article is to demonstrate sign-based relationships relative to the obeying /commanding signs, their harmonious configurations, and oppositions. By exploring the significations of the ascensional signs, divided into sections below, further intricacies can be generated for educational purposes, equally applicable to chart delineations.

The Indirect and Direct Ascensional Signs

Dividing the zodiac along its ascension line, the twelve signs are classified into two groups of six. Simplistically, of the twelve signs, six are of indirect or crooked ascent while the other six are direct. This vertical division accentuates the lesser and greater ascensional times of the indirect and direct signs, respectively. Comparatively, signs ascending directly, from the start of Cancer to the end of Sagittarius, coincide with greater ascensional times, while signs of crooked or indirect ascension, from the start of Capricorn to the end of Gemini, have lesser ascensional times.

The configuration of (vertical) signs crossing the (horizontal) ascension divide are deemed to interact in concordance. Of course, depending on the author, this form of agreement differs in description. Ptolemy, for example, notes these signs as ‘seeing and hearing’, but omits specification (between signs that ‘see’ and ‘hear’). Medieval authors such as Abu Ma’shar reference the crooked and direct signs as relating ‘for prosperous actions’ alluding to the signification of a probable alliance. Despite the varying explanations, the underlying message is one of favorable consent.

Obeying and Commanding Signs

As signs straddling the solstices, obeying and commanding signs, horizontal from left to right, correspond with the arrangement of antiscia. When signs coordinate by sharing the same hour, they are said to compliment each other in a form of obedience. When signs are paired by individual degrees, or antiscia (antiskion), they are deemed to formulate a co-operative alliance. In essence, this counter-penumbra (skia= ‘shadow’, anti= ‘counter’) is said to form a potent, virtuous coalition. While the discussion of antiscia (and contra-antiscia) will be limited here, in order to fully explore the degrees of each sign pairing, it merits a separate (future) post.

A few terms: In Greek, prostassonta (or keleuonta) refers to commanding, while akounta is the term for hearing.

Via sign modality, the horizontal scheme begins and ends with the cardinal and mutable modalities. Therefore, from left to right, cardinal Capricorn obeys mutable Sagittarius, fixed Aquarius obeys fixed Scorpio, mutable Pisces obeys cardinal Libra, cardinal Aries obeys mutable Virgo, fixed Taurus obeys fixed Leo, and mutable Gemini obeys cardinal Cancer.

Therefore, to facilitate memorization, the indirect/ direct arrangement follows this pattern, via modality, from left to right:

1. Cardinal obeys mutable.

2. Fixed obeys fixed.

3. Mutable obeys cardinal.

4. Cardinal obeys mutable.

5. Fixed obeys fixed.

6. Mutable obeys cardinal.

This sequence encompasses all twelve signs, since the ascension line equally divides the zodiacal signs into two groups of six. For short: 1. CM, 2. FF 3. MC, 4. CM, 5. FF, 6. MC.

Crossing the Ascension: Harmonious Aspects Between the Obeying and Commanding Signs

Obeying and Commanding Signs to the Left and Right, respectively.

When obeying signs relate to commanding signs via trine or sextile, the dialogue is considered to be more agreable. In the diagram above, following the basic obeying/ commanding relationship, I begin to add the harmonious sextiles and trines to the top and bottom, respectively. Note that for the purposes of simplicity, clarification, and to prevent confusion, this first diagram is intentionally left incomplete. In other words, only the obeying and commanding signs via horizontal configuration are rendered, while introducing only four additional aspects, via sextile and trine (at the start with Capricorn to Scorpio and Virgo, and ending with Taurus and Gemini to Cancer and Leo, respectively).

The final diagram (displayed below) discloses all possible configurations between signs crossing the ascension line. In other words, given the example above, Capricorn, obeying Sagittarius via ascension, simultaneously obeys Scorpio via sextile, and Virgo via trine. The scheme continues the basic horizontal configurations, until it ends with indirect Taurus obeying Leo, and in sextile to Cancer (the trine to Virgo is added in the following diagram). Gemini, the last of the crooked signs, traditionally obeys Cancer while in sextile to Leo (its trine to Libra is, again, included in the last diagram below). To reiterate, note that these configurations are only formed betweeen signs crossing the ascension line, and that the harmonious configurations share the same electric/ magnetic expression. (*)

Obeying and Commanding Oppositions

Deemed contrary in esteem, oppositions still follow the obey/command principle. In the diagram below, all oppositions are illustrated, considering their locations naturally cross the ascensional divide. Indirect Capricorn opposes direct Cancer, indirect Aquarius opposes direct Leo, indirect Pisces opposes direct Virgo, indirect Aries opposes direct Libra, indirect Taurus opposes direct Scorpio, and indirect Gemini opposes direct Sagittarius. From the top of this diagram, first crooked or indirect sign, Capricorn diagonally opposes Cancer, as the rest of the signs follow a diagonal pattern, from left to right. Similarly, the obeying/ commanding sextiles and trines also align in diagonal symmetry.

Putting it All Together: The Symmetry of Concord

Obeying/ Commanding, Including, Sextile, Trine, and Opposition

Obeying/ Commanding, Including, Sextile, Trine, and Opposition

After observing the fundamental relationship between crooked and direct signs, strictly crossing the ascensional line, I added the sextile, trine, and opposition configurations, and arrived at the diagram above. In other words, this pattern is a result of studying the basic interaction between obeying and commanding signs, including those in harmonious aspects. Again, the core rule is that signs must cross the ascensional line in order to participate in a configuration that adheres to the commanding/ obeying principle. A sextile between Capricorn and Pisces, for example, is unable to extend beyond the left side of the diagram, and would contradict the relationship between obeying and commanding signs.

If the interaction between crooked and direct signs is indeed one of agreement or amant, then the symmetrical arrangement of its possible configurations is a visual affirmation of this acquiescence. Equally, signs promoting dynamic camaraderie as a result of equidistant ascensions (or in the words of the ancients, ‘giving themselves for prosperous actions’) are visual declarations of concordant symmetry.

Copyright © 2019 Saturn and the Sun Astrology. All rights reserved.

Notes: (*) ‘Electric’ and ‘magnetic’ are the terms I am currently using as substitutes for gender.

Etching by K. Kalynovych.

Hand-drawn diagrams are my own. Please do not reproduce without permission. As noted above, I have arrived at these diagrams by studying the source texts referenced below.


Paul of Alexandria, Introduction

Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos

Dykes, Benjamin (trans.), Introductions to Traditional Astrology: Abu-Ma’shar and al-Qabisi

Brennan, Chris, Hellenistic Astrology

Full Moon in Virgo

Full Moon in Virgo

Full Moon in Virgo

Occurring within seven hours of perigee, the syzygy Full Moon in Virgo beckons the fertile earth’s patient procreativity. As the solar light newly bathes in Pisces’ oceanic undercurrent, the lunation’s ruler, Mercury, resides in polarity to its domicile and exaltation. Orchestrating the Moon and resurfacing from under the beams as it enters its pre-shadow phase*, the Messenger merges intuitive guidance with the prudence of meticulous artistry.

The lunation’s emphasis on the exiled Messenger is further exacerbated by its conjunction with Neptune and the absolute, elemental air-void that permeates the celestial composition. As the stars swerve past the vacant airy trigon, the consummation of immediacy pervades earthly obligations. While the Virgoan lunation affords the patient application of physical productivity, its operative fortitude is primordially instinctual and dynamic.

At 0°42′ Virgo, the Full Moon is in the bounds of procuratorial Mercury, where the Messenger is traditionally deemed noble and eminent. However, currently exiled in Pisces, Mercury navigates tempestuously alongside Neptune and the Sun. Although graced by Jupiter, the traditional logician must still operate via dynamic intuition, an illogical method for the calculating Courier.

Nearly exact (at a distance of 36′), the full Moon in Virgo conjoins fixed star Regulus. The effulgence of the royal Persian star, cor leo, is attributed to the qualities of Jupiter and Mars. With the Virgoan Moon, Regulus promotes natural leadership propelled by amorousness and devotional drive. Embracing the lunar Bethulah, the Lion’s Heart bestows the courage to succeed amidst adversity.

Virgo Decan I: The Orb-Weaver

Virgo’s first decan evokes emblems carved by laborious temperance. Akin to the seemingly precarious grace of a gossamer’s glint, there is occult fortitude in the prudent cultivation of cyclical artistry. Assembling each silken filament with painstaking toil, the orb-weaver’s magnetic labrynthine becomes its efficient source of food. However, in order to accomplish this meticulous feat, a somber sacrifice is made in the form of energetic expenditure.

Noted by Agrippa, “the first face of Virgo ascendeth the figure of a good maide, and a man casting seeds; it signifieth getting of wealth, ordering of diet, plowing, sowing, and peopling”. As such, the agricultural artisan recurrently surveys the fertility of the strewing soil, patterning a craft capable of life-affirming sustenance. Both the spider and human laborour exchange physical hardship for nature’s nourishment. Echoed in the Picatrix, “this is the face of sowing, plowing, the germination of plants, of gathering grapes, and of good living”. The material sphere’s abundance is afforded to the weaver of intricate webs, fermenter of fertile soil, all at the humble cost of interminable perseverance. Arachnid or human, nature’s discerning eye secretively calibrates its offerings to the worker’s degree of servility.

Lunar Mansion Twelve: Al-Sarfah
The Full Moon in Virgo falls under the twelfth mansion of The Changer, Al-Sarfah. Thematic of juncture and severance, this lunar mansion is depicted as a man battling a dragon. When the Moon journeys through this mansion’s renewed cycle, Al-Sarfah cautions against conflict and confrontation [3].

In parallel to its Ptolemaic influences, Saturn and Venus, Al-Sarfah alludes to Saturnian limitations, while affording Venusian affirmations of harvest and allies. Nearly echoing the descriptive tone of the Full Moon’s bounds (for intimate strife enshrouds Virgo’s first two terms), both mansion and Egyptian term coincide with a cautionary restraint in personal relations.

Full Moon in Virgo: Configurations and Bounds

The full Moon carves an applying trine with the scarlet malefic. As the ferocious star overcomes the Moon, Mars is hosted by Venus (in Venus’ prolific and fertile term). In Taurus, the Warrior must abide by the benefic’s reconciliatory rules, a foreign concept to the naturally severing properties of (malefic) Mars. Via sign and degree-based trines, the full Moon aspects both malefics, Mars and Saturn, respectively. Likewise, the Saturn-Venus-Pluto copresense harmonizes with both luminaries.

The Piscean Sun is copresent with Neptune and Mercury, as the watery stellium is overcome and ruled by jubilant Jove. Of the three stars, Mercury applies via degree-based square to Jupiter, as the latter star overcomes the Messenger. Fortunately, still in its domicile, the Greater Benefic’s sign-based square to the Piscean stellium (including degree-based square to Mercury) lessens its tension. Resulting from Mercury’s thricely cast sextiles to Saturn, authoritative friction, while likely, is afforded amelioration. Under this lunation’s lens, the primary sextile is visually scrutinized, as the Messenger’s partile ray to Saturn nearly calibrates the ethereal Piscean sway with the Stoic’s stability.

In repetitive trios, the applying, degree-based Mercury-Jupiter square (exact the following day at 21°06’ Pisces-Sagittarius), is the first (of three) during Mercury’s journey through Pisces. Likewise, the first Mercury-Neptune conjunction (previously exact at 15°34’ Pisces) currently separates and applies on March 24th and April 2nd, respectively. Finally, the Jupiter-ruled Sun is in the terms of Venus, as the emerald goddess structures her affirmations within the boundaries of Saturn’s stoicism.

Excessive Earth and the Elemental Air-Void

Full Moon in Virgo

Of the seven visible stars, Jupiter remains in his fiery domicile as excessive earth coagulates the Virgoan Moon’s elemental composition. Newly undulating in Pisces’ oceanic current, the Sun accompanies the Messenger, merging water with the strewing soil. While excessive earth overtly focuses on preserving existing conditions, practical efficiency and material concerns potentially dominate theoretical and ethical principles.

The Elemental Air-Void

As the solar light’s departure from Saturn’s stoic Water Bearer projects the lunation’s air-void, experience is primordially manouvered by the material, emotive, and dynamic spheres. Depleting its abstract qualities, against this elemental composition, the subtlety of air is concealed. Consummated by immediacy, personal detachment is a notable challenge, coupled with the Messenger’s tempestuous exile in Pisces.

Since the unifying properties of air are compromised, uncooperative behavior compromises partnerships, surging hesitance while adjusting to new people, ideas, and insights. In essence, the air-voids’ impediment spawns from an inability to objectively approach internal and external circumstances.

Irrationality surges as a response to poorly assimilated ideas. While the body’s response to the inconceivable can produce physical ailment and aggression, these reactions are (however inappropriately) intended to abolish threat. Physically, excessive air can lead to a highly activated and extremely sensitized nervous system. Consistent meditation and restful, recuperative retreats are necessary for replenishment and the prevention of cerebral exhaustion.


Full Moon in Virgo: Summary

Nearing exact perigee, the Full Moon in Virgo illuminates the earth’s prudent fertility. Scrutinizing the sect light, the Piscean Sun bestows intuitive guidance merged with the patience of meticulous artistry. However, in exile and polarizing its Virgoan domicile and exaltation, Mercury’s opposes the very lunation it governs.

Simultaneously in the bounds of Mercury, the lunation’s emphasis on the exiled Messenger is exacerbated by its conjunction to nebulous Neptune and the elemental air-void that permeates the celestial composition. As the stars swerve past the vacant airy trigon, the consummation of immediacy pervades earthly obligations. While Jupiter overcomes the Piscean stellium (Sun, Mercury, and Neptune) via degree and sign-based square, the absence of air necessitates reason before instinct.

While the Virgoan lunation affords the patient application of physical productivity, its operative fortitude is primordially instinctual and dynamic. Gathering these insights, mindfulness in relational efforts requires the application of impartial surveillance. Acclimating to air’s sanguine temperament, a third-person narrative must aid the tempestuous Messenger.

* The Full Moon at 0°42′ Virgo is exact on 2/19/19, at 10:53 AM EST.
* Two hours prior to the full Moon in Virgo, Mercury begins its pre-shadow phase at 16°6′ Pisces at 9:19 AM EST, on 2/19/19.


Agrippa, Henry C., The Three Books of Occult Philosophy

Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos

Warnock, Christopher, The Mansions of the Moon

* Etchings by K. Kalynovych.

Copyright © 2019 Saturn and the Sun Astrology. All rights reserved.

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Heptazone and the Single Degrees of the Stars

Heptazone and Single-Degree Divisions

The purpose of this article is to introduce the concept of heptazone as it directly relates to monomoiria, the single-degree division of the stars. Upon defining both terms, their interrelation will be discussed, in order to contextually integrate both concepts. For the purposes of clarification, this article does not focus on earlier planetary schemes (such as Egyptian order), and solely intends to discuss heptazone as it relates to monomoiria, and its corresponding, sequential planetary scheme.


Heptazone, Greek for planetary sequence, follows the standard, Alexandrian order of the stars via mean motion. Heptazone dates back to the first century B.C., and, according to Holden, is speculated to be a century older. [1] The planetary sequence for heptazone is Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, the Sun, Venus, Mercury, and the Moon. This basic sequential scheme aligns with the order of the 36 decanates, their corresponding diurnal/ nocturnal hours, and the order of the stars’ single-degree division. Each of these correlations are discussed in the passages below.

Heptazone and the Thirty-Six Decanates

The order of the thirty-six decans, or sectors of the seven stars, are arranged in the same order suggested via heptazone. Therefore, following heptazone sequence, 10° of each sign is attributed to its pertinent (sequential) star.

Beginning with Aries, Mars receives the first decan of the Ram, its corresponding (10) degrees, followed by the Sun, and finalized with Venus, the last decan of Aries. Following this order, Taurus is allotted Mercury (10), the Moon (20), and Saturn (30). Again, the three decans of Gemini correspond to Jupiter (10), Mars (20), and the Sun (30). Essentially, the entire structure of the decanates begins with Mars, as the planetary domicile of Aries, and follows heptazone sequence throughout the twelve zodiac signs. This order ends with Mars, the final decanate (and last 10 degrees) of Pisces. As an informational supplement, the table below intends to facilitate this explanation.

The thirty-six decans following sequential heptazone as discussed in Paulus’ Introduction.

Just as the memorization of essential dignities is useful, recalling basic heptazone order affords immediate access to planetary arrangement. This is helpful when identifying specific planetary decans, including their significance in lunations, as well as the diurnal and nocturnal planetary hours. The relation between heptazone, planetary hours, calendar days, and monomoiria are explored below.

The Sequential Scheme of Heptazone Encircling the Heptagram

heptazone and heptagram

Planetary sequence (heptazone) encircling the planetary days (via heptagram).

The standard heptagram traces the planetary days, starting with Sunday and ending with Saturday. When paired with heptazone, the heptagram’s final planetary day begins heptazone sequence: Saturday, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and the Moon. Aligning with the sequence of the planetary hours, planetary order via mean motion (Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and the Moon) likewise unfurls the calendar week’s planetary order (Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, and Saturn). As the Sun begins the basic heptagram sequence of planetary days and Saturn ends it, so does Saturn begin heptazone sequence as the Sun becomes its terminal.

Heptazone, Planetary Hours, and Monomoiria

Coordinating with the planetary hours, heptazone also determines the sequence of single-degree division, more commonly known as monomoiria.

Following heptazone sequence, each planetary hour aligns with each sequential, single-degree division (monomoiria) for each sign. This applies to all signs relative to planetary ruler, their corresponding (planetary) day, and hour. Similar to the commencement of the decans (as the first 10 degrees of Aries are attributed to Mars), monomoiria assigns its first single degree to the respective star’s domicile (coinciding with Mars), immediately followed by standard heptazone sequence. In other words, if the sequence begins with Mars, as is the case with Aries and Scorpio (as shown below), it is followed by the Sun, Venus, Mercury, the Moon, Saturn, and Jupiter.

The single degree division scheme, beginning with the diurnal and nocturnal domiciles of Mars via Aries and Scorpio, end with the nocturnal and diurnal domiciles of Saturn, via Capricorn and Aquarius, respectively. As represented below, horizontally, the seven stars have the following order: Mars, Venus, Mercury, Moon, Sun, Jupiter, and Saturn. Vertically, following each planetary domicile, from 1-30°, the usual heptazone sequence applies (to each individual degree).


Heptazone, Monomoiria, Planetary Days and Hours

While the first degrees of each sign correlate with the commencement of each planetary day, at 24 degrees of each sign, the corresponding planet aligns with the final planetary hour of each night. To elaborate, for Sunday, regarding the 24th single degree of Leo, Mercury coincides with the final hour of the night. For Monday (Cancer), the final hour is designated to Jupiter, for Tuesday (Aries/ Scorpio) there is Venus, Wednesday (Gemini/ Virgo), there is Saturn, Thursday (Sagittarius/ Pisces) the Sun, Friday (Taurus/ Libra) the Moon, and for Saturday (Capricorn/ Aquarius) the final hour is that of Mars.

Saturn: The First Heptazone Star

Using Saturn as the first star in heptazone order, Saturn becomes the day’s lord and governs the entirety of said day. Immediately, Saturn is assigned the first hour, where it is simultaneously the ruler of the day and starting hour. In procession, the second hour is assigned to Jupiter, yet the day is still surveyed by Saturn. The standard heptazone sequence continues until the eighth hour, when Saturn is, once again, the day and hour-ruler. Furthermore, heptazone order repeats with Jupiter as the ruler of the ninth hour. Once the first hour of the nocturnal sect arrives, Saturn remains the day ruler as Mercury rules the first nocturnal hour. The second hour of the night is attributed to the Moon, and by the third hour, again, Saturn governs both the day and nocturnal hour. The nocturnal scheme proceeds accordingly, concluding with Mars, and commencing anew with the day of the Sun.

Heptazone and the Seven Star Zones

Using heptazone, each of the seven stars is assigned a pillar or ‘zone’ in concordance with planetary temperature and related attributes. Due to its paralyzing frigidity, Saturn is allotted the first and nethermost zone, described by Paulus as ‘being very cold and lying in the frost.’ In direct contrast, surveying the secondary zone, Jupiter is described as nourishing, temperate, and a bestower of life. Mars, the lesser malefic star, is assigned the tertiary zone on account of its ‘destructive’ and fiery essence. Ascribed to ether, its fiery yet life-sustaining counterpart, the Sun, is afforded the fourth and central zone. Curiously aligned with her planetary Joy, Venus surveys the affirming fifth zone, mirroring the associations of conception and offspring. Described as ‘common’, Mercury is granted the sixth zone on account of its moisture and quotidian semblance. Finally, narrowing in proximity to earth, the Moon is granted the final, seventh zone. Here, the Moon is described as phlegmatic and ‘most powerful’. Likewise, the pallid sphere is said to embrace the diversity of all stars, and considered inclusive towards planetary divisiveness (an attribute afforded to Mercury in the Joys). Because the Moon occupies the final zone, in the heptazone scheme, this star is considered the foundational core that sustains the upper zones.

The Seven Zones of the Stars  

1. Saturn: Gelid – First Zone

2. Jupiter: Nourishing – Second Zone

3. Mars: Fiery-Destructive – Third Zone

4. Sun: Ether – Fourth Zone

5. Venus: Conception – Fifth Zone

6. Mercury: Moist/ Quotidian – Sixth Zone

7. Moon: Phlegmatic/ Inclusive – Seventh Zone

Heptazone and Monomoiria: Summary

Notes (and obligatory disclaimer): Described by Paulus in his Introduction, the zones of the stars remain a theoretical framework. As stated in the objective of this article, while earlier planetary schemes exist, the heptazone sequence is still worthy of exploration and research.

The convenience of combining heptazone with monomoiria resides in the seemless, sequential composition of planetary order via degree. Using the single-degree division of the stars, it is easy to reference a particular planetary decanate, day, diurnal, and nocturnal hour. Once a degree aligns with the day’s planetary ruler, this allocates a form of dignity, akin to the standard essential dignities of the stars.


Holden, James Herschel (trans.), Paul of Alexandria, Introduction to Astrology

Etchings by K. Kalynovych.

(Hand-drawn heptagram is my own).

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Copyright © 2019 Saturn and the Sun Astrology. All rights reserved.

February 2019 Astrology Forecast

February 2019 Astrology Forecast Calendar

Under the Jupiter-ruled first decanate, February emerges with the Saturn-surveyed Moon in the bounds of Mercury. Post Cazimi, Mercury is now blindingly under the beams, and will enter its pre-shadow phase on the 19th, coinciding with this month’s Full Moon. Seemingly bifurcated by Mars, February’s celestial composition formalizes on 2/1/19 with the friction of Mars confronting Pluto via square at 21°39′ Aries-Capricorn, squaring the ascending node at 26°32′ Aries-Cancer, and finally, conjoining Uranus at 29°11′ Aries, directly prior to its ingress into Taurus.

In the Martian terms of Sagittarius, Venus completes a jubilant trine to Uranus before committing to Capricorn’s structural stoicism. Ingressing into the Sea Goat on 2/3/19, Venus’ affirmative qualities grace the sector of one’s chart signaled by Capricorn. This ingress will impact nocturnal charts more poignantly, and can help calibrate charts burdened by Saturn’s more sobering lessons. While this shift from fiery, Jupiter-ruled territory to the solidified boundaries of earthy Capricorn are seemingly somber, the practical objectivity of Venus in the Sea Goat can elucidate and concretize endeavors. However, as elaborated below, contention can surface, partly resulting from Mercury’s condition in Pisces.

This month, simultaneously starting their journeys in the bounds of Venus, both Mercury and Mars ingress into their detriments, Mercury into Pisces (2/10/19) and Mars into Taurus (2/14/19). Stationing retrograde come 3/5/19, the Messenger in Pisces nearly foreshadows March’s mercurial challenges. Prior to this, on 2/19/19, Mercury conjoins Neptune at 15°34′ Pisces, the first in a sequential trio, and enters its shadow phase before its sextile to Saturn at 16°55′ Pisces-Capricorn. As for Mars, on 2/14/19, the red planet is graciously hosted by Venus. In Taurus, the Warrior must abide by the benefic’s reconciliatory rules, a foreign concept to the naturally severing properties of (malefic) Mars.

Nine sextile configurations forge February’s trajectory, beginning with Mercury-Jupiter at 18°15′ Aquarius-Sagittarius and ending with Sun sextile Mars at 9°2′ Pisces-Taurus.

As it began, February’s terminal is chiseled by the Capricorn Moon as Venus completes her journey through the Mars term of the Sea Goat. The notable air-void further accentuates the mercurial labyrinth that must be delicately traversed. On 3/1/19, Venus squares Uranus at 29°47′ Capricorn-Aries before ingressing into Saturn’s diurnal domicile (or sequel) in Aquarius.

Exploring February’s Elemental Air-Void

Essentially, the air affinity is akin to the third-person perspective of a book’s narrative, or a bird’s eye view of a moving picture: impartial surveillance of any given scenario.

In both mundane and natal astrology air-voids are cumbersome to navigate when the remaining elements are heavily activated. In other words, experiencing life through the active/ dynamic (fire), emotive (water), and material (earth) spheres can conceal the subtlety of air. If we look to its qualities, air is, comparatively, easily dissolvable against the remaining elements. Personal detachment is challenging, since the experiences are consumed in immediacy.

Since the unifying properties of air are compromised, uncooperative behavior can beget unsatisfactory partnerships, as hesitance surges when adjusting to new people, ideas, and insights. An amount of distrust and suspicion is applied to purely intellectual pursuits and people. In essence, the main air-void obstacle stems from the inability to objectively approach internal and external circumstances.

Air-voids are often linked to delicate nervous systems with psychosomatic manifestations. When ideas fail to be assimilated (mentally and emotionally), irrational reactions can surge. While the body’s response to inconceivable ideas can produce physical ailment and aggression, these reactions are intended to abolish threat. Physically, excessive air can lead to a highly activated and extremely sensitized nervous system. Consistent meditation and restful, recuperative retreats are necessary for replenishment and the prevention of cerebral exhaustion. Additionally, it is imperative to implement a change of scenery away from the quotidian in order to escape from systematic preoccupations, second thoughts, and interminable plans.

February 2019 Ingresses

  • 2/3/19: Venus ingresses into Capricorn
  • 2/10/19: Mercury ingresses into Pisces
  • 2/14/19: Mars ingresses into Taurus
  • 2/18/19: Sun ingresses into Pisces

February Lunations

  • 2/4/19: New Moon in Aquarius: At 15°45′ Aquarius, as the luminaries apply to a Jupiter sextile, the new Moon is copresent via degree with Mercury. In the background, the ongoing Saturn-Neptune sextile is exact. Likewise, the luminaries, in aversion to Saturn, Venus, Pluto, and Neptune, sextile the Mars-Uranus conjunction. Via sign, a Mars-Saturn square is activated. In the bounds of Venus, the New Moon falls under the Mercury-ruled second decanate.
  • 2/19/19: Full Moon in Virgo: At 0°42′ Virgo the perigee syzygy is in the bounds of Mercury, under the Sun-ruled first decanate. As the Moon’s ruler is ingressed into its Piscean adversity, the full Moon punctuates Mercury’s fleet-footed urgency with an ethereal sublimation. In Mercury’s bounds, the full Moon falls under the solar-ruled first decanate.
  • February 2019 Astrology Calendar

    • 2/1/19: Mars square Pluto at 21°39′ Aries-Capricorn
    • 2/2/19: Venus trine Uranus at 28°55′ Sagittarius-Aries
    • 2/3/19: Mercury sextile Jupiter at 18°15′ Aquarius-Sagittarius
    • 2/3/19: Venus ingresses into Capricorn
    • 2/4/19: New Moon at 15°45′ Aquarius
    • 2/7/19: Sun sextile Jupiter at 18°56′ Aquarius-Sagittarius
    • 2/7/19: Mercury sextile Mars at 25°40′ Aquarius-Aries
    • 2/9/19: Mars square Ascending Node at 26°32′ Aries-Cancer
    • 2/9/19: Mercury sextile Uranus at 29°5′ Aquarius-Aries
    • 2/10/19: Mercury ingresses into Pisces (adversity/ detriment) I
    • 2/12/19: Ascending Node stations direct at 26°24′ Cancer
    • 2/13/19: Mars conjunct Uranus at 29°11′ Aries
    • 2/14/19: Mars ingresses into Taurus (adversity/ detriment) II
    • 2/17/19: Venus sextile Neptune at 15°29′ Capricorn-Pisces
    • 2/17/19: Ascending node stations retrograde at 26°29′ Cancer
    • 2/18/19: Sun sextile Uranus at 29°21′ Aquarius-Aries
    • 2/18/19: Venus conjunct Saturn at 16°46′ Capricorn
    • 2/18/19: Sun ingresses into Pisces
    • 2/19/19: Mercury conjunct Neptune at 15°34′ Pisces
    • 2/19/19: Mercury sextile Saturn at 16°55′ Pisces-Capricorn
    • 2/22/19: Mercury square Jupiter at 21°06′ Pisces-Sagittarius
    • 2/22/19: Venus conjunct Pluto at 22°17’Capricorn
    • 2/23/19: Mercury sextile Pluto at 22°18′ Pisces-Capricorn
    • 2/25/19: Venus opposite Ascending node at 25°58′ Capricorn-Cancer
    • 2/26/19: Mercury trine Ascending node at 25°58′ Pisces-Cancer
    • 2/27/18: Sun sextile Mars at 9°2′ Pisces-Taurus

    Copyright © 2019 Saturn and the Sun Astrology. All rights reserved.

    Etchings by K.Kalynovych.