Welcome to Archai, an academic journal that explores significant correlations between cyclical alignments of the planets and the archetypal patterns of human experience.
From the Archives
Saturn and the Theoretical Foundations of an Emerging Discipline
About the Issue:
Saturn structures the rites of passage and initiations of life: at the precise time of birth Saturn fixes the natal chart, and it stands at the threshold of death. James Hillman’s essay “On Senex Consciousness” provides the foundation for this issue: it is an homage to the Saturn archetype, providing the backbone for the entire volume. The contributors—including Richard Tarnas, Keiron Le Grice, Jessica Garfield-Kabbara, and Drew Dellinger—offer articles on such subjects as the potential for a feminine re-visioning of Saturn, a philosophical investigation into the three modalities of time, the relation between psychological and archetypal complexes, the connection between participatory theory and archetypal cosmology, a review of Sean Kelly’s book Coming Home: The Birth and Transformation of the Planetary Era, and archetypal analyses of Dante’s Saturn return, the Saturn-Neptune complex in the life and works of Virginia Woolf, and the relation between karma, collective field dynamics, and the Saturn-Pluto complex.
From Archai Issue 2, 2010
There are few frames of reference more illuminating of individual and collective archetypal dynamics and psychological conditions than an archetypally informed knowledge of current planetary positions. In the following pages I would like to set out an overview of the major world transits of the outer planets that I believe are most relevant for understanding our current historical moment. In particular, I want to review both the most significant longer-term planetary alignments leading up to this era and, more recent, those that have unfolded since Cosmos and Psyche was completed five years ago, in 2005. On that basis, we can deepen and extend that book’s brief anticipatory analysis of the extraordinary convergence of planetary configurations of the 2008–12 period. This article is therefore continuous with the chapter “Observations on Future Planetary Alignments,” from the final section of Cosmos and Psyche.
From Archai Issue 5, 2016
Astrology is a soul-making practice. The astrologer participates in this sacred act by correlating experiences in the world with the movement of the planetary bodies. With its many incarnations, the soul passes through countless charts, each time living, growing, and creating from that chart’s unique archetypal structure. Astrology is a process of remembrance of the soul’s journey and calling. The natal chart reflects the soul’s karma, story, and potential for embodiment and expression. But the way the soul lives through the chart, and thus the archetypes, is also informed by the historico-cultural context into which one is born—the collective karma of the human species at any given moment of time. Every astrologer has heard that “whatever is born or done at this particular moment of time has the quality of this moment of time.” Every chart, whether for a person, place, or event, carries the archetypal qualities associated with the position of the planets at that moment. Perhaps less often considered is the way in which a new discipline is born out of its historical moment. Every discipline, like every person, comes from a tradition steeped in a rich and complex history. All things born during our current time are coming out of the tradition of patriarchy, thousands of years old, with its considerable gifts and immense challenges. Depth psychology and archetypal astrology, like most things born in our time in the West, have evolved out of the Greco-Roman and Judeo-Christian patrilineal traditions. History and tradition deserve our careful attention, both our reverence and our critical analysis. Each age carries forward everything that has come before it while at the same time evolving that tradition. Each age undertakes the collective soul-making of our species.
To read the rest of this article please see: “Re-Visioning Saturn“
An Evolving Perspective
From Archai Issue 5, 2016
For Jung, the call to individuate arises from the deepest sources of life and is supported inwardly and outwardly by the compensatory activities of nature. It is a call, therefore, that is not to be taken lightly. Both inwardly and outwardly nature strives unceasingly to bring about the realization, in the life of the individual, of a unique pattern of meaning.
Robert Aziz, Jung’s Psychology of Religion and Synchronicity
When I first began seeing clients as a psychotherapist, I found myself entranced by their stories and deeply moved by their struggles. As I listened to the themes of their lives play out and shape themselves into patterns in front of me, it was as though I could see strands of their psychic material weaving together into a Gordian knot. I could feel how when one strand was tugged, the entire knot reverberated in response, and my client would go into a well-worn, deeply problematic reaction. That reaction seemed to be fueled by a perception that did not appear to be an appropriate fit for the current situation, and often exacerbated existing relational issues, if not actually creating problems where they had not existed before. These problematic interactions often resulted in yet another life experience that validated the client’s painful beliefs about his or her place in the world, and added to the already complicated mass of related feelings, experiences and memories. I frequently found myself reflecting to my clients: “This is complicated.”
To read the rest of this article please see: “Psychological and Astrological Complexes“
From Archai Issue 1, 2009
Through an exploration of the individual biographies, personalities, and the creative work of major figures in both popular and high culture, Richard Tarnas’s essay on the Saturn-Neptune archetypal complex gives a powerful demonstration of the multidimensional nature of the archetypes and their myriad forms of expression in the particulars of human experience. In a continuation of the method of analysis he developed in Cosmos and Psyche, Tarnas cites numerous examples from philosophy, science, politics, music, literature, and film as he explores the expression of the Saturn-Neptune complex in the lives of such diverse figures as William Blake, Oscar Wilde, David Hume, Sigmund Freud, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Samuel Barber, and Joni Mitchell.
To read the rest of this article please see: “The Ideal and the Real“
An Archetypal Analysis of Rafael Nadal’s Personal Transit of Uranus to Jupiter
Keiron Le Grice
From Archai Issue 2, 2010
Even in a career defined by a precocious level of achievement, for Spanish tennis star Rafael Nadal the fifteen-month period between January 2008 and April 2009 was extraordinarily successful. The likeable, courteous, and modest twenty-four-year-old from Mallorca embarked on an incredible winning streak that saw him claim the French Open title in Paris, the Wimbledon championship in London, win a gold medal for Spain at the Beijing Olympics, and reach the semi-finals of the other Grand Slam tournaments at the U.S. Open in New York and the Australian Open in Melbourne in 2008, before winning the Australian Open for the first time in early 2009. Nadal’s triumphant year was crowned as he claimed the coveted position as world number one in the men’s Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) rankings after years as number two in the shadow of the Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer.
To read the rest of this article please see: “Game, Set, Match . . . Nadal“
From Archai Issue 1, 2009
The concept of planetary archetypes, in many respects the pivotal concept of the emerging astrological paradigm, is complex and must be approached from several directions. Before describing the nature of the association between planets and archetypes, however, we must first address the general concept of archetypes and the remarkable evolution of the archetypal perspective in the history of Western thought.
The earliest form of the archetypal perspective, and in certain respects its deepest ground, is the primordial experience of the great gods and goddesses of the ancient mythic imagination. In this once universal mode of consciousness, memorably embodied at the dawn of Western culture in the Homeric epics and later in classical Greek drama, reality is understood to be pervaded and structured by powerful numinous forces and presences that are rendered to the human imagination as the divinized figures and narratives of ancient myth, often closely associated with the celestial bodies.
To read the rest of this article please see: “Archetypal Principles“
Archetypal Cosmology in Historical Perspective
Keiron Le Grice
From Archai Issue 1, 2009
At the turn of the twentieth century, when Sigmund Freud first developed the theoretical framework and therapeutic method of psychoanalysis in Vienna, one could scarcely have conceived of a movement less likely to exert a powerful, lasting influence on the modern mind. Controversial, taboo, ridiculed and rejected by many, psychoanalysis, with its theories of repressed libidinal impulses and childhood sexuality, radically contravened and challenged the deeply entrenched values, mores, and attitudes of the Victorian morality of the era. To many people at the time it must have seemed certain that psychoanalysis was destined to be quickly consigned to history, to be written off as a curious oddity, a failed experiment, a perverted and warped conception of human nature. The early reactions to Freud’s publications were scornful and scathing. According to Ernest Jones, Freud’s biographer and fiercest ally, “The Interpretation of Dreams had been hailed as fantastic and ridiculous . . . the Three Essays were [deemed] shockingly wicked. Freud was a man with an evil and obscene mind.” Psychoanalysis moreover, was an affront to the nineteenth century’s assured belief in progress and rational self-determination. The notion that the modern human being, despite pretensions to rational autonomy, was in fact the unwitting instrument of unconscious impulses and complexes, and that the pious morality of that time concealed a seething cauldron of instincts whose sublimated expression lay behind humanity’s most elevated cultural aspirations and achievements was a message both unpalatable and, seemingly, altogether untimely.
To read the rest of this article please see: “The Birth of a New Discipline“
Adapted from The Mountain Astrologer, 2011
In the following essay, I would like to describe, first, the key individuals and influences that contributed to the academic discipline and philosophical perspective called archetypal cosmology, and then its longer ancestry, the centuries-old traditions out of which it emerged.
It could be argued that the emergence of archetypal cosmology was in some sense inevitable, as scholars and researchers working in late 20th-century academia recognized the larger implications of the evidence for planetary correlations with the patterns of human experience. Given the extraordinary nature of these correlations, the obvious task was to pursue the research in a more systematic way, think deeply about the resulting evidence, then integrate this with the relevant ideas and conceptual frameworks from both the admired past, such as the Platonic–Pythagorean tradition or the work of Johannes Kepler, and the cutting-edge present, from depth psychology to the new paradigm sciences.