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The Astrology Podcast

Ep. 192 Transcript: Zodiacal Releasing: An Ancient Timing Technique

The Astrology Podcast

Transcript of Episode 192, titled:

Zodiacal Releasing: An Ancient Timing Technique

With Chris Brennan and Leisa Schaim

Episode originally released on February 11, 2019


Note: This is a transcript of a spoken word podcast. If possible, we encourage you to listen to the audio or video version, since they include inflections that may not translate well when written out. Our transcripts are created by human transcribers, and the text may contain errors and differences from the spoken audio. If you find any errors then please send them to us by email: theastrologypodcast@gmail.com

Transcribed by Teresa “Peri” Lardo

Transcription released June 16, 2021

Transcription updated February 21, 2024

Copyright © 2021 TheAstrologyPodcast.com

CHRIS BRENNAN: Hi, my name is Chris Brennan, and you’re listening to The Astrology Podcast. In this episode, we’re gonna be talking about zodiacal releasing, which is an ancient timing technique. So today is – what is it? Wednesday – no, it’s Tuesday, February 5th, 2019, starting at 5:17 PM here in Denver, Colorado, and this is the hundred and 92nd episode of the show. Joining me today is Leisa Schaim. Hey Leisa.


CB: And yeah, so we’re gonna be going through zodiacal releasing today. For more information about how to subscribe to the podcast or become a patron of the show and get early access to new episodes as well as other bonus content, go to TheAstrologyPodcast.com/Subscribe.

All right, so let’s jump right into it. We’ve got a big show to do today. We did a big one last month with the electional astrology episode, and this was another one that I’ve been meaning to do forever because this is one of my core techniques – this is one of our core techniques – and I’ve been putting it off for a long time, but it’s finally time to do it.

All right, are you ready? How do you feel about – we’ve got a lot to cover today.

LS: I’m slightly daunted. We have a very long outline, but it’ll be, I think, really good material, so.

CB: Yeah. So we’re gonna be approaching this – maybe we should say from the outset that our main goal is to introduce this technique to beginners, to people that are not familiar with it or only have very little passing familiarity. We are gonna create kind of a dialogue so that it’s not just purely a lecture like some of my other lectures on zodiacal releasing. And we’re hoping we can integrate some, like, anecdotes and other things like that that will make it still somewhat interesting or useful for those that are already familiar with the technique, although this is gonna tend to be more of an introductory type discussion on the subject rather than a more super advanced one.

LS: Right. But we will at least be dialoguing about it rather than it being a straight lecture.

CB: Yeah. And that being said – about it being, like, a beginner thing – this is actually one of the most complex timing techniques that exists in astrology, one of the most complicated ones. And usually it’s something that I introduce at the very end of my book – it’s in the very last chapter of my book, and it’s also the very last chapter of my course, where I have a full – it takes me 18 hours to introduce the entire technique. So even though I’m calling – this as an intro lecture for the technique, it’s still gonna be a somewhat advanced lecture, but it’s also one of the most interesting and, like, compelling and powerful techniques that I’ve found and that I use regularly in my practice. So I think it will be worth it for those even if you find the discussion challenging.

LS: Definitely.

CB: All right. So what other preliminary things should we mention? Is there anything else we should get out of the way, just that you can think of off the top of your head?

LS: Not that I can think of off the top of my head.

CB: All right. Well, let’s jump into it.

LS: Okay.

CB: All right. So first things first – you’ve heard on the podcast, if you’ve listened to it for a while, references to this collection of timing techniques known as time lord techniques or time lord systems. And what these are – it’s a collection of lost timing systems that have been recovered from ancient astrology over the course of the past 20 or 30 years. And the premise of the time lord systems is that not all placements in our birth chart are activated at all times, but instead some parts of the birth chart are sort of lying dormant and waiting to be activated, especially through one of these techniques. And once those placements are activated, the natal promise or the natal potential of the placement is awakened and unleashed in the life of the native for better or worse.

LS:  And I think that’s one of the most striking differences. It’s not the only one, of course, but between modern and traditional astrologies or approaches to a chart, because modern astrology always assumes that things are more or less always active or equally available or equally expressing themselves, all the different placements. And it’s actually a really interesting and different approach to think about some of them as being a little bit quiet at some times and then getting really kind of, like, awakened, and that’s just, like, kind of a fascinating difference to me.

CB: Yeah, because in modern astrology, it’s largely psychological and largely character-based, and those are thought to be things that are more or less largely present somewhat continuously throughout the life – maybe in different forms or maybe they grow and develop in different ways, but for the most part, there’s an assumption going into that all of these placements can be read as somehow relevant for the entirety of the life consistently. Whereas one of the weird things in most forms of ancient astrology, not just Hellenistic but also Indian astrology, is this idea that some of the parts of the chart are not relevant until specific fixed times in the life, and then they will become activated and will manifest something. But whatever is promised at the moment of birth is not necessarily constant.

LS: Right. Yeah. And so you can see that with different techniques with the, you know, Indian like you said, with the dasha system, with annual profections, with zodiacal releasing, there’s different time lord techniques to show when these things are awakened. And it’s not just an idea. Once you start actually, you know, watching the techniques work, you can actually see that this is in fact the case.

CB: Yeah. And so that’s a really important point that the time lord systems – so the time lord systems, many of them didn’t survive into modern astrology in the 20th and early 21st century because they were contained in ancient Greek and Latin and other texts that were lost or that didn’t get transmitted and translated into modern languages, and so they sort of fell out of the astrological tradition as a result of that. And it was only starting especially in the 1980s and 1990s with some of the translations of ancient astrological texts and the movement to translate these texts from ancient astrology into modern languages that suddenly we started – the astrological community started rediscovering some of them. And there was a lot of excitement around that initially, but there was also a lot of, not confusion, but they weren’t necessarily, like, easy techniques. They took a lot of work to understand how to apply them. And that’s been part of the process that’s been going on over the course of the past couple of decades, is individual astrologers working with these techniques and recovering them and recovering how to actually apply them in practice with clients. And that’s a lot of what I’ve been doing for most of the past decade or two, and you as well.

LS:  Yeah. And it’s interesting because there was that first wave where the techniques were kind of being rediscovered but maybe not super popularized as far as people even being able to understand how to read the texts and understand exactly what was meant. And then people who’d been working on that kind of making it more easily understandable to, like, the average astrologer perhaps in order to even begin this process of starting to work with the techniques and testing them out. And now we’re kind of, like, at an interesting phase after those first two phases of them being much more popularized at this point and more people kind of being able to experiment with them and see what’s happening.

CB: Yeah. Well, now that there’s been – it’s like, the initial phase is translating the texts, but once the texts were translated into English, they were still incredibly difficult to read, and it took a special type of person who was like, able to sit down and like, work through those translations. Then there was also debates about the interpretation and how the text was translated and whether we got it right or whether there are different interpretations. Then we started applying some of the techniques and like, trying to learn them in practice, and that took sort of almost, not a full generation but at least a decade. And the result of that eventually was like, the publication of my book, for example, in 2017, Hellenistic Astrology: The Study of Fate and Fortune, which presented one of the first overviews of Hellenistic astrology that included techniques like this. And then Demetra’s book just came out this year, where she also goes into some of that stuff. And I think she does mention zodiacal releasing somewhat briefly, right?

LS: Briefly, yeah, she does.

CB: Yeah. Okay. So, but now it’s time, now that there’s been over a decade of astrologers using these techniques in practice, now we can start introducing them to a wider audience, and that’s gonna help increase the research. Because one of the points that I wanted to make at some point here, and maybe I should just say it up front, is that some of these techniques are so complicated but also so powerful that we realize that we’re still just scratching the surface and there’s still a lot there to understand about them. So I’m gonna present – we’re gonna present – our approach and our understanding of the technique as it is today at this point in early 2019, but I’m sure there’s still lots of parts of the technique that have yet to be fully understood or yet to be fully discovered, and that’s part of why I wanted to do this podcast is to open up that research effort to a broader audience at this point and get more people involved. But I think it’s important sometimes to acknowledge… I think sometimes people are reticent or avoid acknowledging what they don’t know. Sometimes like, acknowledging what you don’t know or focusing on the things that you do know, you do feel solid about and not necessarily worrying about the things that you don’t know is really crucial, and it’s not like, a skill, but it’s something that sometimes I feel like people aren’t as comfortable with as they should be.

LS: Definitely. Yeah. That it’s not a shame to say, “I know this, and I’m not sure about this yet.”

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So we’ll go through that at different points and try to explain the things we do know and we do feel solid about in terms of research into the technique over the past decade or so as well as the areas that are open for future research.

All right. So the Hellenistic time lord techniques – there’s been over at least seven of them. Valens talks at least about seven of them if not more – Vettius Valens, who was a astrologer from the 2nd century – and he’s actually the source of our technique for zodiacal releasing. He’s the only Hellenistic astrologer that preserves the technique. I think there’s one or two other references in passing, like in Rhetorius, who mentions it because he read Valens and so got the technique from Valens as well. And then there’s also an Indian astrologer where Kenneth Johnston – the astrologer Kenneth Johnson – mentioned to me that there’s a technique in the ancient astrologer Parashara that looks kind of similar to zodiacal releasing, and so it may have been transmitted at least in part to that tradition as well. So the Hellenistic time lord techniques are the equivalent of the Indian dasha systems, because it turns out in Indian astrology – because they’ve had a long and relatively unbroken tradition over the past 2,000 years – that they actually had some of these techniques that survive into modern times. The most popular dasha system is called the Vimshottari dasha system, which just about every Indian astrologer uses. And I’m hoping to do an episode, I think next – hopefully episode 193 might end up being on that technique. I’m interviewing an Indian astrologer to sort of compare and contrast how that dasha technique works compared to this time lord technique.

LS: Nice.

CB: So one of the things that’s interesting about that is that since Indian astrologers have been using these dasha systems continuously, whereas we’re just now recovering them in the West, Western astrologers actually stand to learn some things or could learn some things by studying Indian astrology about how Western astrology originally worked. Not because Western astrology came from Indian astrology necessarily, but because there was an interchange between the Hellenistic and Indian traditions 2,000 years ago, and so they exchanged a lot of shared concepts and had a lot of similar or shared understandings.

LS: Yeah. And it is interesting how, I mean, even if you know just the very basics about the dasha system, I mean, it’s pretty similar in terms of dividing, you know, the life up into chapters and, you know, activating or the idea of activating certain placements at different times. So, you know, even though there may be different specifics from there as far as how to interpret things, you know, this is already an idea that’s kind of out there in the astrology world.

CB: Yeah, so and that’s what it does, and maybe we should get to explaining generally what it does. This technique – and most time lord techniques – it divides a person’s entire life up into different chapters and subsections as if the life was a book and you could open it up and just look at like, the chapter headings for the person’s entire life in like, a table of contents or something.

So that you know when one chapter starts and when one chapter ends and then when the next chapter starts and when the next chapter ends. And when applying these techniques or when learning this technique, kind of imagine that. So imagine that you could look up the table of contents for your entire life and what that would look like and where the author of that would start and stop different chapters of your life.

LS: Yeah. And that’s kind of a fascinating thing to think about even if you hadn’t been using this kind of technique before, because I think people often think about their life more even casually in that way. You know, it’s like, “Oh, well, this was the time where I was in this state before I moved across the country. And then this was the time before I started this major new career.” You know, so it’s a familiar concept even if not with the technique itself yet.

CB: Right. Yeah. So it’s a familiar concept in the sense that we all do that, but then —

LS: Right.

CB: — actually in astrology, most of the timing techniques in modern astrology, it’s like, the primary technique is transits, and there’s other ones like secondary progressions or things like that that we tend to focus on them almost as being singular, specific moments in time when the aspect goes exact, right?

LS: Yeah.

CB: So we tend to focus on them as singular moments in time or singular events as a result of that. But the time lord systems are different because they instead conceptualize time as like, blocks of time, or as sometimes a series of events, but mostly as chapters and paragraphs for the most part.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah, so all right. So it breaks it up into chapters and paragraphs. You can also study it in zodiacal releasing from the perspective of different topics. So you can study it from the perspective of your career and overall life direction. You can study it from the perspective of health and bodily matters, and there’s also another application where you can study it relative to relationships, so different chapters in your life relative to relationships.

LS: Right. And these are all different timing sequences, so it’s not to say that you’re looking at one sequence and you can study it from all these different perspectives; there are actually different starting points for each one.

CB: Right, and we’ll get into that. So like I said, we’re gonna do a broad introduction to this. It’s one of the most complex techniques. The full lecture on this is 18 hours. We’re not gonna get to everything. But my main goal is just to introduce it to novices here and start to get more interest in it, especially because it’s starting to get integrated into more programs, and more software astrology programs as well as websites now have it available, and so people are constantly asking me what this technique is about and how to use it. And for a long time, this is something that I always have a balance in the podcast about like, how much to put out for free versus how much to keep back in my courses, and this is one of the techniques that for a long time I just kept back in my courses, but for this we’ll do a broad two- to three-hour introduction. And then if people wanna learn more, they can find out more information about it on my website, which is TheAstrologySchool.com, where I have an individual module on zodiacal releasing that’s 18 hours long, as well as the full Hellenistic astrology course that teaches everything in context.

LS: Right.

CB: Because one of the things that we’re gonna get to is there’s some basic prerequisite concepts, like sect, Arabic parts or lots, that are kind of like, part of this technique, that are precursors that you need to know and understand pretty well.

LS: Right.

CB: And we’ll mention them in passing, but obviously we can’t spend a lot of time dwelling on those things.

LS: Yeah. And there’s definitely more things that we won’t be able to introduce in this podcast. But as long as you get the gist, then you can either go forward or backward in terms of what you need to fill in from there if you’re interested in learning more.

CB: Right. All right. So let’s get into it. First we were gonna start with a little bit of biographical background to set some context about our learning the technique and sort of recovering it and where we’re coming from with respect to all of this. So, I started learning Hellenistic astrology in late 2004 at Kepler College, famously studying under Demetra George as I wrote in the foreword to her book recently, where I wrote like, a funny anecdote about how, you know, I got half of the notes, where I got like, the book of translations of Hellenistic texts but I didn’t get like, her commentary that was supposed to go with it, so for the first few weeks, I just struggled with the course because it was just trying to read the text and understand them on their own terms, which is incredibly difficult. It’s doable, and I actually did a surprisingly good job and found that I had an aptitude for reading older texts and sort of understanding what the person is trying to say. But once I actually got Demetra’s study notes, I found that it was like, so much easier to actually understand what was happening in the text by having some context.

LS: Right.

CB: So I started in late 2004. In the summer of 2005, I took an opportunity and I moved to Maryland to study at Project Hindsight where they were translating some of these texts, and not long after I got there, we started doing study sessions, like work sessions, where we were trying to workshop with a small group of us. I think there was like, five or six or seven of us who were there around Hindsight at the time, and we were workshopping different techniques. One of the ones that we were working on shortly after I got there, that they were working on and then I got to join some of the early study sessions on, was zodiacal releasing. And I had never heard of this technique before; it hadn’t been introduced in the Hellenistic course at Kepler. And they were finally starting to get a handle of it, but they were in the early stages of doing that. And so I got in pretty early on in that process and very quickly saw – and I think we all saw as part of that group – that there was something really impressive and something really startling about this technique where the way that it worked… For one, it just works differently than any other timing technique that I was familiar with as a modern astrologer up to that point. Like I said, for those reasons, like, it’s not like transits where it’s about a singular event or secondary progressions or something like that, but it’s showing entire durations of time, and sometimes it’s dividing the person’s entire life up and almost like, telling their life story from birth until death and all of the major chapters in between. But the way it works is weird, because you can calculate it all just based on the position of the planets in the birth chart, and it doesn’t require anything else. It’s not something that requires like, ongoing transits or calculations like transits does or progressions —

LS: Right.

CB: — because it’s all just built into the birth chart. It just tells you, “These are the chapters of your life based on the alignment of the planets at the moment of birth.”

LS: Right. It’s just like, a numerical sequence that you work out from there once you have the date, which is either really exciting and fascinating, or really strange to think about, I think, upon first glance.

CB: Yeah. Well, and that’s the thing that we’ll definitely get into and we’ll probably wrap up with. But definitely – I guess we can explore it a little bit now. So I was really impressed by the technique. We were applying it to some of the examples that were like, relevant politicians and celebrities in the mid-2000s. So it was like, George Bush’s chart, Al Gore’s chart, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and then some other famous 20th century nativities like Einstein and Hitler. And it was so impressive in the way that it sometimes showed especially career peaks, like periods that were the most active and important for career matters, or sometimes showed career transitions, where a person would be in one career field and then they would suddenly and dramatically jump to a different career field. I was so impressed by that that it really became the main technique that I focused a lot of my time studying from that point forward. But one of the things that’s weird about the technique is it definitely does work so well that it can give you a real philosophical crisis, and it certainly precipitated a crisis for me for a couple of years at that point.

LS: Yeah, and same for me. We haven’t got to the point where you, you know, introduced me to it, but…

CB: Yeah. Well, I’m studying it for a few years at this point from 2005 forward. I very quickly realized it was really impressive and went through a philosophical crisis about like, what does this mean about fate and free will and the nature of the world and astrology and what is astrology capable of? Because astrology up to that point for me was not… You know, you always think that astrology – most astrologers, they start out like, they go into astrology thinking it’s capable of a certain level of like, predictive power, but then you learn modern astrology, and modern astrology is much more just making more general character or psychological statements, and its sort of prediction is almost sort of like, a side effect or something that happens as a side result of something else that you’re actually trying to do, which is study psychological complexes and development. And so you lower your expectations – the student of astrology does – in terms of what astrology can do or the extent to which it’s actually predictive in nature. But then being exposed to a technique like this, it suddenly went back up there in terms of realizing what astrology was capable of, but then raising a lot of philosophical issues as a result of that in terms of especially the question of like, how much, how many things in our life are predicted from the moment of birth? And additionally, not just events and external circumstances, but one of the weird things about zodiacal releasing is that sometimes it’s showing periods pertaining to action and choices, and sometimes there’s people making choices along the way, like career choices or relationship choices that are clearly indicated in the technique, which is weird because you would think that that’s otherwise something because it’s a choice that’s up to free will and that is not something that should be indicated in any way by astrology.

LS: Right. Yeah. And I think, I mean – going back to what you were saying about expectations from what you can get from astrology – I mean, I think coming from knowing no astrology to learning like, modern astrology, I think it’s definitely still impressive and shows like, things you wouldn’t think would, you know, you’d be able to see there in terms of like, periods of time with certain like, longer transits or that kind of thing. You’re like, “Oh, I am experiencing this as an influence right now.”

CB: Yeah, and I —

LS: You know.

CB: — don’t want to like, bash or downplay modern astrology and its predictive capabilities or even how interesting and what it can do, it’s just that it’s like, sometimes the way it’s set up and like – Rob Hand’s book, Planets in Transit, it’s that like, you know, you’re having a Mars transit, so you’re gonna be more irritable that day.

LS: Right.

CB: And if you don’t internalize that and get some grip on it psychologically, then it could manifest as something external like an accident, but there’s no necessity that it has to be that way, that the only way it’ll manifest externally is if you don’t internalize the psychological component of that somehow.

LS: Definitely. No, I agree with that. Yeah. I was just thinking about the comparison of, you know, like, it definitely still shows no matter what like, things that you wouldn’t see otherwise, or you wouldn’t think that could be shown externally otherwise. But I agree that it’s definitely more oriented towards psychological for the most part. But yeah, then when it switched to knowing zodiacal releasing, that is a completely different thing to wrap your mind around, and it does have different implications and so forth.

CB: Yeah. So I began using the technique, applying it, sometimes modifying it. I did a modification where I discovered that you could apply it to relationships by applying it to zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Eros, which is something that we’ll explain more later. That was my own private modification that was not in the text. Additionally, I was doing consultations, I started doing consultations at that point, and for over a decade applied zodiacal releasing in almost every consultation that I did because it became my primary technique. And I discovered different things about it and introduced different terminology for trying to explain different parts of it that I was seeing.

Because one of the things is – I should explain where the technique comes from. So this comes from the text of Vettius Valens, who was an astrologer that lived in Alexandria, Egypt in the 2nd century CE, and he was a Greco-Roman astrologer. He may have gotten the technique from an earlier astrologer who wrote a text under the name of Abraham. And that text from Abraham seems to be a text on the Arabic parts or the lots. But it seems to have also had this timing technique that was based on the lots or the Arabic parts. Valens only has like, two chapters, and it’s kind of a brief treatment of zodiacal releasing in book four of his anthology. It’s the second time lord technique that he introduces in that text, where he ends up focusing in book four of the anthology on at least three different time lord techniques. But zodiacal releasing is unique because he introduces it by sort of stopping and saying, “This is a powerful technique that I’m about to introduce to you.” And it turned out to be right. But he only uses two example charts and his treatment is kind of brief. So even though he gave us a lot of great pointers about how to use it, there’s still large parts of the technique that only became clear in terms of their application after about a decade of practice.

LS: Which is kind of crazy given how much you can do with it. I mean, to develop it out of so little, comparatively speaking.

CB: Yeah, of just a couple, a few chapters. And it’s actually a few chapters, because a chapter in Valens is actually very brief, but it’s just two chart examples and just a few brief sections very early on in book four of the anthology.

So I was applying the technique in every consultation for years. Eventually, we met in 2008, and I think it was around then – 2008, 2009 – that you began learning the technique.

LS: Yeah, pretty early on. I think you were like, really excited to show it to me, and I started experimenting with it from there.

CB: You were not actually excited though to receive it —

LS: No, no, you were — right.

CB: I was excited.

LS: You were excited.

CB: Okay.

LS: I had trepidation.

CB: You were not initially impressed. I didn’t use the technique, I don’t know if I did in any delineation or anything, did I?

LS: No, I don’t think so. I mean, I think you might have looked at it yourself, but no, you just I think set up like, some freeware, and I started looking at it, you know, and you talked to me about it. So I started looking at how everything was lining up, and I mean, pretty quickly I could see that things were lining up pretty impressively. But I think there was like, a moment in there where I was actually like, mad at you for like, teaching me this, because it really did, you know, speaking of, you know, philosophical crises and implications and all of that, I like, had a huge issue with that because I didn’t – I mean, you know, we’re gonna get into this a little bit further, but I mean just the kind of, you know, upshot preview here is that it did make things seem much more predetermined than I thought before and also that I was comfortable with, you know, and that kind of thing.

CB: Right.

LS: And in a sense actually, it kind of messed with my sense of spirituality at the time, which was based more on free will type of things.

CB: Right. And I can already kind of anticipate that there’s some people that are just immediately probably rejecting this out of hand and just saying, “That’s bullshit,” like, “That’s not true or whatever,” because most people do… It’s one of the actually problems in astrology is usually people approach astrology with whatever their pre-existing philosophical or religious belief is and then they kind of graft that onto their astrology in some way. But this is truly, for me at least and I think for you as well, was an instance where the technique itself ended up informing our philosophy because it was hard to ignore what the implications of the technique were. And it was the implications of the technique that ended up informing and sort of creating our philosophy by sort of cluing us in to some weird property of the universe that we otherwise wouldn’t normally, that didn’t come naturally to us or that we wouldn’t normally think was true.

LS: Right. And I think people can approach, you know, their own philosophies of life or their sense of spirituality in either direction, from either direction. So sometimes people have kind of like, preset things that sound good to them or sound correct or whatever, and then they approach life with that. And then the opposite can be true at other times as well, where, you know, how you experience life or things you observe or, you know, experienced firsthand can inform your sense of how life works and how the universe works, and therefore, you know, if that’s true, then what must be true about the overall, you know, sense of the universe? And so yeah, this was definitely of that second category, where it’s like, you have to actually reform your beliefs in some ways by seeing if this can work, then what does that mean?

CB: Right. So that’s gonna be – that will be my challenge to all of you learning this for the first time, is to try to go into it with an open mind without too many preconceptions, either about broader philosophical debates about like, fate and free will, but also without too many presuppositions about astrology and how it works, and just learn the technique and see what you think of it and see if it works, and then see if that ends up naturally in some way affecting your philosophy of life and your philosophy of astrology just in and of itself by existing if you indeed end up thinking that the technique is impressive or is as compelling as we do.

All right, so with that little introduction out of the way, let’s talk about how to calculate the technique.

LS: Okay.

CB: All right, so we have a long section on calculation. We’ve gotta outline all of this first. We may do some timestamps, either below in the description for this video or on the description page for The Astrology Podcast at TheAstrologyPodcast.com on the description page for this episode. So if you wanna jump around, you can. This is probably one of those talks where you should watch it all the way through from start to finish, but yeah, there will be timestamps. It’s good that I’m mentioning that now 30 minutes into the meeting.

LS: Right.

CB: All right, so the first thing you actually have to do is a little tricky, is in order to calculate this technique, you first have to calculate the so-called Arabic parts or the lots. So the one that people are most familiar with that still exists in modern times, even though people don’t really know what to do with it, is the so-called Part of Fortune or sometimes it’s called in Latin like, Pars Fortunæ. So the Arabic parts are mathematical points that are sensitive points in a chart. They’re abstract mathematical points that you get by measuring the distance from one planet in the chart, and then you measure the distance to another planet in the chart, and then you measure that same distance from the degree of the Ascendant, and that results in this specific degree, which is called an Arabic part in modern times, but in ancient times in the Hellenistic tradition, it was called a lot, sort of like the concept of a lottery or the idea of casting lots or drawing lots. Like, when everybody writes down their name on a piece of paper and everybody – and you put it in a hat and somebody shakes it up and you pull one of the names out of the hat, so that it’s an idea of like, in a random allotment of something.

LS: Right. And so the sort of corollary to that is that something about the lots, perhaps more than some of the other placements, has to do with a sense of luck or chance, right?

CB: Yeah, luck or chance or allotment or that which happens to you that’s kind of like, outside of your control that has to do with circumstance or fortune. Like, this broader concept of fortune ends up being very prominent in this technique.

LS: Right. And that does bring up another thing that is fairly different from modern conceptions of astrology, is that there are these placements that have more to do with luck and aren’t really necessarily fully under your control really.

CB: Yeah. So this is a whole topic and a whole issue in and of itself. We’re not gonna get too much into lot calculation here today or how to calculate lots. I do have a video on YouTube which you can Google; it’s just titled How to Calculate the Lot of Fortune, and that’ll show you how to calculate it by hand. It’s actually incredibly simple and easy, and I’d recommend everybody watch that video, because once you watch it, you realize that the lots are not just like, abstract algebraic formulas, but they’re actually very interesting geometrical measurements and distances relative to different points in the chart. And once you understand that, it’s a little bit more accessible understanding both the rationale for the calculations as well as how they could be relevant as sensitive points in a chart.

All right, so they’re important because there’s three lots that you need to use. There’s a minimum of two and potentially three lots that you need to use to calculate zodiacal releasing because the lots are the starting point for the technique. So in order to calculate lots, what I want to do here instead of focusing on how to calculate them is I just want to tell you some places that you can go to get the lots calculated. So the best one and the primary one I would recommend at this point of time is the traditional astrology calculator that’s on Astro-Seek.com. So it’s Astro-Seek, S E E K.com. And I wanna give a shout out to Petr Soural from Astro-Seek who’s the proprietor of that website, because he’s really been doing an amazing job integrating traditional and ancient astrological techniques into his chart calculation software – which is free – over the course of the past few months or the course of the past year or so. And if you go to his traditional chart calculator, it will correctly calculate the Lot of Spirit, the Lot of Fortune, and as of this morning, he just told me after I emailed him that he’s integrated my calculation for the Lot of Eros, which comes from the 4th century astrologer Paulus Alexandrinus. So that’s really awesome because for a while you couldn’t do that, and the fact that you can do it for free is really helpful.

LS: Yeah, and that’s really awesome for him to do it so quickly for this episode too.

CB: Yeah, definitely. So thank you to Petr; I appreciate it. Keep up the good work. You can also go to Astro.com and go to their extended chart selection, and then under style, click Astrodienst with Arabic points, and this will print out a chart – a standard Astro.com chart that most of us are familiar and comfortable with – that will contain the Part of Fortune and the Part of Spirit, as well as five other lots that are based on different planets. This is useful, especially if you normally use Astro.com, and the calculation for Spirit and Fortune that you get from that will be correct. However, the calculation for the Lot of Eros and Necessity uses a variant calculation that I don’t use and I don’t necessarily endorse. So I would recommend if you wanna use Astro.com for that, you can do it with that chart style for Spirit and Fortune, but do not rely on the calculation for the Lot of Eros if you’re gonna do zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Eros for the purpose of this.

And then finally in Solar Fire, if you have the paid astrology software program which is what we usually use and we are constantly demonstrating on The Astrology Podcast as well as on my videos, Solar Fire’s the main paid program that I use. I have a page file that will calculate the lots for you, so Spirit, Fortune, and Eros over in the side. So I think in the video version, like I’ll throw up… For example, here’s my chart layout that shows the chart. It’s a whole sign house chart, and then over on the right, you can see it says “parts Hermetic” something, and it shows Fortune, Spirit, a few other lots, and one of them is Eros. So that will calculate all of those lots correctly. And you can get that layout by just doing a Google search for the title of the video I made is Installing Hellenistic Astrology Page Design in Solar Fire. So if you search for that phrase, that video of mine will come up that shows you how to install my page layout. And in the description for that video, you’ll find the download links to download the chart design to install in Solar Fire.

And for those that don’t have Solar Fire, I always meant to mention, they gave me a promo code where people can get I think a 10% discount on the program if you buy it from Alabe.com. And the promo code is AP15. So A as in alpha, P as in Peter, 15. So four characters. All right, so that’s how you calculate lots. That’s our quick and dirty – is that good for calculating lots?

LS: Yeah, that’s good. I mean, because it would be a whole ‘nother thing to talk about like, the lots themselves, which I know you’ve done sometimes in previous lectures, but it really extends things.

CB: Yeah. Well, this is really – it’s funny, because if you go back and watch – like, I’ve been teaching this technique for over 10 years now. I think one of the first lectures I gave on it was like 2006, 2007 and at the Blast Astrology Conference in… I think it was like, February or something – it was like, early 2007. I gave a presentation. It was like, a 75-minute presentation on zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Eros. But in it, I tried to teach like, the history of ancient Western astrology at the beginning and the origins of Hellenistic astrology, and then I tried to teach all the basics of Hellenistic astrology, including like, the traditional rulerships and sect, whole sign houses and everything else. And then I went into lot calculation. I tried to teach how to calculate the Lot of Fortune and Spirit and the rationale for those calculations and how it’s so cool, as I had figured it out. And then I got into zodiacal releasing, and I showed how zodiacal releasing the Lot of Spirit worked, and how releasing from Fortune worked, and how it was working in so many cool examples that I had found over the past few years. And then I introduced zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Eros, which was my own modification of the technique, and showed how it could be used in relationships. And like, just barely like, slid into the home plate and finished like, barely on time having crammed all of that into a single lecture.

LS: That sounds very much like you and also particularly like your earlier lectures.

CB: Yeah. Well, and so my process over the past decade of doing lectures has been like, learning how to tone it down and just introduce pieces gradually and not throw, you know, everything and the kitchen sink in.

LS: Right.

CB: Although, I guess this is gonna be a bit of an exception since we are gonna cover a lot in this lecture because we don’t have a time constraint of 75 minutes.

LS: Right.

CB: We’re still gonna try to keep this two to three hours theoretically, but there’s just things that we’re not gonna get into for the sake of this that you just have to look up or take for granted. And the lots is one of them where you just have to calculate it with a chart calculator, especially one that we’d recommend like the one on Astro-Seek, and that should be good to start with.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So in terms of calculating zodiacal releasing, once you’ve determined you’ve calculated the Lot of Spirit, the Lot of Fortune, and the Lot of Eros, you wanna identify the sign that each lot is placed in, and you want to start from the sign that contains the lot that you want to study. And the trick here is that each of those three lots has certain meanings, and you’re gonna wanna start from the lot that matches the meaning that you want to study. Does that make sense?

LS: Yeah, I think so.

CB: How would you explain that?

LS: Yeah, so I mean, basically just three topics that we – three sort of umbrella topics that we were talking about before – you know, career, overall life direction…

CB: So that’s Spirit?

LS: That’s Spirit.

CB: So start from the sign that contains the Lot of Spirit if you want to study career —

LS: Right.

CB: — overall life direction, and action.

LS: Right. And then you would start with the Lot of Fortune in contrast if you want to look at health, things that pertain to the body, things that kind of befall you not through your own actions, and accidents and that sort of thing.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: And then start from the sign of the Lot of Eros for relationships and marriage and matters pertaining to love in general.

So those are our three starting points is the sign – and it’s not even the degree. Once you’ve calculated the degree of each of these lots, because they will occupy a specific degree in the chart, part of the trick is that the lot marks the entirety of that zodiacal sign with its topics. And so this is a common thing that was used, a common principle that was used all over ancient astrology. It’s actually part of the rationale behind whole sign houses, that once you calculate the degree of the Ascendant, it marks that entire sign with its topics, and then the sign after that becomes the second house and the sign after that becomes the third house and so on and so forth. It’s the exact same principle with the lots, which is the lot falls in a specific degree of the chart, but once you establish the degree, the degree doesn’t matter that much because what it does is it marks the entirety of that sign with its topics. So generally speaking, the sign that contains Spirit is career and life direction, the sign that contains fortune is health and bodily matters, and the sign that contains Eros is love and relationships. All right.

So once you figure that out, here’s how you calculate zodiacal releasing. Each sign of the zodiac is attributed a certain number of years. And whatever – let’s say you want to study career, and you calculate the sign that the Lot of Spirit falls in. Whatever sign that is, it has a certain number of years associated with it, and however many number of years that is, that’s how long the first chapter of the native’s life will last for.

LS: Right, yeah. And then after that allotment of however many years that is, then you go into the next chapter, which is the next sign that follows that first sign.

CB: Right. So let’s go ahead and explain, let’s introduce the number of years. And this is really crucial and these are periods that you’re gonna want to memorize pretty quickly as you learn this technique, because they’re not that hard to memorize, and they’re pretty crucial to understanding it. So I’ll throw this up on the video version.

So here’s the periods. So, for the signs Aries and Scorpio, they’re both allotted 15 years each. For Taurus and Libra, they’re both allotted eight years each. For Gemini and Virgo, they’re allotted 20 years each. For Cancer, it’s 25 years. For Leo, it’s 19 years. For Sagittarius and Pisces, they’re both allotted 12 years each. For Capricorn, it’s 27 years. And for Aquarius, it is 30 years. So these are the periods that are associated with each of the signs of the zodiac, and what you do in order to – these periods are mainly based on the synodic cycles of the planets, so they do actually have or they are connected or related to the planet that rules that sign as the domicile lord of that sign. So for example, Mercury ruling Gemini and Virgo, and that’s why the period for both of those is the same. Venus ruling Taurus and Libra, and that’s obviously why those two are the same and so on and so forth.

LS: Right.

CB: So some of these are based on synodic cycles, like the 8-year cycle of Venus, where Venus goes retrograde in the same spot every eight years. Jupiter’s 12-year cycle is obvious. Mars also has a 15-year retrograde cycle where it goes retrograde in approximately the same spot in the zodiac roughly, and so on and so forth. There’s other reasons and sort of rationales for some of the other periods that are also astronomically based, although we don’t necessarily need to get into them for our purposes here.

LS: So you can see already that wherever your Lot of Spirit falls or wherever your Lot of Fortune falls or Lot of Eros falls, depending on which sign that it’s in will have a great deal to say about how quickly your periods progress – whether your first period, for instance, is eight years versus 30 years, for instance.

CB: Yeah. So let’s do – let’s personalize. I mean, I’ll use my own. So my, for example, Lot of Spirit, if I wanted to study my career periods, falls in the sign of Scorpio. So Scorpio has a 15-year period, so that means the first chapter of my life lasts for 15 years. And once that 15 years is up, it then moves to the next sign in zodiacal order, which is always counter-clockwise, and it moves to Sagittarius. So Sagittarius has a 12-year period, so that means that that sign is then activated for 12 years, and that becomes the second chapter of my life, which lasts for the duration of that sign. Once that 12 years is up, it then moves to Capricorn, the next sign in zodiacal order, for 27 years which is the period of Capricorn. So that means the third chapter, since it’s the third sign in order, will last for 27 years of my life.

LS: Right. Yeah. And compare that, for instance, to someone who was born with their Lot of Spirit in Capricorn. So that would be the first 27 years of life would be the first level one period in releasing from the Lot of Spirit, and then they would move to 30 years of Aquarius after that. And so by the time they get to their third period, they would already be 57 years old, whereas by the end of the time when you got to the beginning of your third period, you would have only been about 27.

CB: Right. So which signs you encounter entirely depends on where the lot falls in your chart and that sets up a whole sequence. And because these – so there’s two points about that. One, this is clearly – right from the start, we can tell it’s different than something like a progression, because progressions tend to be like, constant, moving at a specific rate. Like solar arcs, for example, are one degree per year, and you just keep directing everything at a constant rate from that point forward. This is not a constant rate, but this is it’s a sort of progression in a way, but it’s variable. The rate of moving through the signs is variable based on the ruler of the sign. So some signs go relatively quickly, like Libra is eight years, whereas other signs take a very long time – like, for example Aquarius is 30 years.

LS: Right.

CB: So it’s moving through the signs in zodiacal order, but it’s doing it at a variable rate. So this is where we can actually finally explain the name of the technique, which is zodiacal releasing. And the Greek term for this is – that we’re translating as “releasing” here – is aphesis, which means to release something, to let something go, to liberate something. And this is a term – this was Schmidt’s translation, so this is Robert Schmidt’s translation, and he defends the translation and talks about it in the introduction to his original translation of Vettius Valens I think in like, 1994, 1996. It’s actually 1996, I think. And explains – because there was other academics who translated it differently as like, starter or starting point, is how they translated aphesis, which is like, true in that it is the starting point, but the actual translation when this term was used in other texts that were non-astrological was that it had to do with like, releasing something or letting it go. And he had different speculations at the time in his translation when he first adopted this convention, but to me at this point, the primary one that seems to be the most relevant is just the notion that when you’re doing quote-unquote “releasing,” you’re taking something that is a fixed significator in the natal chart that’s usually like, stuck there permanently in the birth chart, and you’re sort of releasing it and letting it move around the chart at a certain rate. So you’re releasing it from its fixed position and allowing it to move around the chart at a different rate. In this case, the rate is based on zodiacal order, and it’s based on the zodiacal signs having certain periods associated with them. So that’s why we call it “zodiacal releasing” because you’re releasing a fixed significator and then you’re letting it move around or jump around the chart based on the signs of the zodiac, so thus zodiacal releasing.

LS: Right, that makes sense.

CB: Yeah. Somebody on Twitter asked me that because I put out a call for like, questions, and they said, “Why should we not just call it aphesis?” And they said that in some people or some languages, they called it aphesis. And one of the points is that it’s true; there’s other techniques that are used that are also called “releasing” techniques or where the technical term “aphesis” is used, like in the length of life technique, where they use primary directions and they release a significator and move it around the chart based on primary directions until it hits like, the rays and malefics. So those would also be called releasing techniques.

But part of the reason here why I don’t think we should call it aphesis is giving it a name that actually translates the original Greek term is more useful because then it gives you some insight, and the language isn’t just like, abstract, useless technical language, but it actually means something. And that would be my objection to just using the term aphesis, is like, if you’re gonna do that, then why don’t you do that with like, everything in astrology? Like, why don’t we use the term marturia or epimarturia, which is the Greek term for aspect.

LS: Right.

CB: You know?

LS: Yeah. There would be Greek terms for everything that we could just like, completely wholesale only use Greek.

CB: Yeah, and they wouldn’t mean anything.

LS: Right.

CB: They would just be like, useless technical terms. And that was something that Schmidt was very big about was translating the terms into what they actually meant in our language or in other languages, and I think that was one of the strongest things that he did, that he introduced in his astrology and his translations that’s like, useful and valuable to us and that I think is something that’s being continued today. But that may be one of the reasons why that’s unique perhaps in English because of Schmidt’s efforts to do that and introduce some of those translation conventions, whereas sometimes other translators, even other English translators, will sometimes just adopt, will just transliterate a term and not actually translate it.

LS: Right.

CB: All right, so we’ve explained the name zodiacal releasing. Does that make sense?

LS: Yeah, I think so.

CB: Okay. Because it’s like, there was other speculations at some point that maybe it had to do with like, releasing the person for something or forgiving a debt, was another meaning of aphesis. And these are like, speculations about like, maybe they’re using some deeper like, philosophical meaning for this term.

LS: Right.

CB: But I think in my opinion personally, it really is probably just literally describing releasing a fixed significator from its position and letting it move around the chart.

LS: Yeah. I mean, there’s a lot of speculative things you could do with that. Like, you know, releasing certain placements to do what they will, you know —

CB: Sure.

LS: — what they are meant to do.

CB: Or unleashing them.

LS: Yeah, exactly.

CB: Because that’s kind of the idea about the placements being like, dormant and then becoming activated.

LS: Exactly —

CB: Yeah.

LS: — that’s like, kind of the second place I would go with that personally. But, you know, you could speculate in like, probably five different directions about that one.

CB: Yeah. And one of the issues actually, just to really round out the whole point, is that none of the Hellenistic astrologers really gave any of these techniques names. They just kind of described what they did. Like, profections for Valens was just the technique. I think he calls for determining the lord of the year, some astrologers refer to it as that. But they usually just describe how the technique works, and Valens says it’s a releasing technique that goes zodiacally or something to that effect. And so that’s why we’ve come up with like, cute names for it in modern times, because we have to come up with something to refer to it.

LS: Right.

CB: So we call it zodiacal releasing, or we call it annual profections, which literally is just descriptive of what it does, which is you’re profecting or you’re advancing each year.

LS: Right.

CB: Whereas in zodiacal releasing, you’re releasing a significator and you’re doing it zodiacally rather than by degree or something like that.

LS: Right. Yeah. I mean, I guess the only reason to maybe like, keep – as a devil’s advocate thing, not that it’s actually my position, but – to keep the original Greek perhaps is that when you do put it into these kinds of terms, on the one hand, it does make it more understandable, like what you’re doing with it. But on the other hand, you could read too much into like, what that is supposed to mean then, you know, if you put it into English terms that it wasn’t originally.

CB: Yeah. And there will be that – that’s gonna be an issue definitely. And I’m sure that’s already happened to some extent, and there’s also gonna be debates about what the correct term was. But that’s just part of this whole process that we’ve been dealing with for 20 years, the community has been dealing with, or small parts of the community, because in recovering all this ancient stuff, sometimes you have to make judgment calls and you have to like, label something or try to come up with a label with something so that we can have discussions about it, because we naturally – it’s easier and it’s almost like, necessary to people to like, put labels on things in order to discuss them in groups —

LS: Right.

CB: — so that you can have shared concepts and like, a shared language.

LS: Right. I feel like you’re like, explaining human society 101.

CB: Yeah. Well, it’s just funny because then sometimes there will be objections, like why —

LS: No, for sure.

CB: — name it or why not use the original term or what have you.

LS: No, I’m teasing.

CB: All right. So we’ve explained – have we explained how to calculate it?

LS: M’hmm.

CB: So it moves at a variable rate, it’s not fixed or constant, but it’s symbolic, jumping from sign to sign. And you pretty much go through the signs as long as the person is alive. But one of the things, obviously, that you run into really quickly here then is that it takes so long to go around the signs of the zodiac that nobody ever lives long enough to go through a complete cycle —

LS: Right.

CB: — on the yearly level.

LS: Right. Yeah.

CB: So there’s – which is kind of interesting just in and of itself, right from the start, to think about that there’s only certain signs of the zodiac that you’re gonna experience when you’re starting from a specific lot and then moving from sign to sign. You’re only gonna experience like, a small part of your chart, and there’s gonna be another part of the chart that you don’t experience on that like, yearly level.

LS: Right. And I mean, you know, we can kind of wax philosophic more later again, but just to kind of like, bring that in and just an observation is that just like the kind of chance of where the lots fall in your chart, this is also another piece of that chance or fate or luck, where like, which signs you start with will determine which signs you ever experience and which signs you will never experience.

CB: Yeah, exactly. And you could say like, “Well, if I had been born, you know, an hour or two later, then I would have got to experience this part of the zodiac.” But it’s like, that doesn’t matter, because you were born at this moment in time here. The lot fell in this sign, and therefore you get to experience this part of the zodiac.

LS: Right.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah. So just kind of like, throwing that in there in case people aren’t noticing that.

CB: Yeah, that’s good, I like that. That’s really good.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So one of the things I have to throw out that’s weird is that for the purpose of calculation, the technique uses 360-day years and 30-day months. So this is a weird thing with the technique, which is that it’s not using a 365-day year, it’s using a 360-day year in order to divide up the entire year and in order to make the months exactly 1/12th of the year. So there’s a few things with the technique that I’m not gonna spend a lot of time breaking down or explaining that are just like, weird facets of the technique that you have to just take for granted and bear with me. There’s other discussions and different astrologers have discussed the rationale or tried to explore the things for why this is using this technique. But this is one of several where I’m just gonna have to say just accept that that’s it for the purpose of this.

LS: Right, yeah. It’s a technical thing.

CB: Okay. So 360-day years, 30-day months. We’ve explained what are the general periods, which is the yearly level of attributing years to each of the signs, but like other time lord techniques and other dasha techniques in the Indian tradition, there are also subperiods, where within one of these very long, you know, one- or two- or three-decade long periods, you can also break it down into subperiods, where it activates the signs of the zodiac on a sub level for a shorter duration of months or days or even hours.

LS: Right. And we’re mostly gonna talk about the biggest time periods today, so the level ones and the level twos, but it is good to know that it keeps subdividing. One of the analogies I like to sometimes use, like you said, like a book and then chapters in terms of like, the level ones being the biggest chapters and then the level twos being perhaps paragraphs or sections of chapters. I sometimes also like to use the analogy of like, a technical textbook, because that’s something, that’s one of the only types of textbooks that like, subdivides formally, where you’ll have like, you know, a large section and then you’ll be like, 0.1 or whatever.

CB: Right.

LS: I also —

CB: Like 1.1, 1.2 —

LS: Yeah, exactly.

CB: 1.4. Exactly, yeah.

LS: Exactly. So I like to use that analogy sometimes with people when explaining it. Another analogy I also like to use is that of nesting dolls. Do you know that? Do you know those?

CB: Yeah, like Russian nesting dolls?

LS: Yeah, because the first one is always there. But then if you put a second one in it, then the first one and the second one are there. And then you put another one in it, and the first, second and third are all there.

CB: Right.

LS: So that kind of thing.

CB: I mean, that makes sense to me, then it’s getting a little abstract.

LS: Well.

CB: Let’s outline – let me throw it up for the video people just so they can see what it looks like. So I’m trying to think of which one I should use first. So we’ve already showed like, the yearly periods and how there’s certain years associated with each of the signs. So you can also break that down into subperiods so that within an individual – let’s say somebody is in a 25-year Cancer period, right? So that 25-year Cancer period will start with – and within that 25-year Cancer period will be subperiods. So that on the first subperiod level, which we call level two, instead of attributing years to each of the signs, it will attribute months to each of the signs. So the 25-year Cancer period on level one on the general period becomes 25 months on the subperiod. And then the 19-year Leo period becomes 19 months in Leo. Virgo becomes 20 months and so on and so forth. So the way that this works is that – let’s say you start out, let’s say somebody hypothetically started out a 25-year Cancer period when they were born in 1974. So for the first subperiod on level two within that 25-year Cancer period would be a 25-month Cancer period. So they would start out 25 months in Cancer on level two, then it’d go to 19 months in Leo, then 20 months in Virgo and so on and so forth.

LS: Exactly. Yeah. So we always – whatever level one you’re starting out with, the first level two within that level one will always be the same sign.

CB: Right, it’s always the same sign. It’s just for a duration of months rather than years.

LS: Exactly.

CB: And then it moves through the signs in zodiacal order. So that’s interesting then because when you break it down to months instead of years, that means the signs get activated much more quickly and a person is actually on the sub-levels actually usually able to go through all of the signs of the zodiac all the way around their chart.

LS: Right. And I think this is the quick response to anyone who thinks it sounds overly simplistic at first glance in terms of only, you know, spending, you know, your lifetime in maybe three or four signs, because on the larger level, that’s true. But then on the more brief level, you go through lots of them.

CB: Right. Or anybody that’s like, devastated that they’ll never have like, a Pisces period or something.

LS: Right, exactly. You will have a Pisces period, even if it’s not a level one Pisces period.

CB: Right. It’ll just be for a much shorter duration of like, 12 months instead of 12 years.

LS: Exactly.

CB: All right. So that’s the level two subperiods, and it just moves around the signs on the subperiod for as long as the general period lasts. So it keeps moving around the subperiods. So when the general period is up, so when that like, let’s say that 25-year Cancer period is up, even if it’s only like, part of the way through a subperiod, it cuts it off at that point because then the 25-year Cancer period moves to the next sign, which is the 19-year Leo period. And then at that point, the subperiods start over again starting at Leo for 19 months which is the new general period.

LS: Right.

CB: So this is all sounding overly complicated I’m imagining, especially for those listening to the audio version. I’m trying to throw up some visuals for those with the video version, although it’s still probably not super clear for them, but I think it will become more clearer, not just as we go through some examples later, but also once you throw this up. You go to some of the websites that we’re gonna mention here for calculating zodiacal releasing periods, and you calculate it in your own chart, then you’re immediately gonna see what the layout is and very quickly start to get a sense for how this works.

LS: Definitely. Yeah, that is a prerequisite to really getting it.

CB: Okay. So with that in mind, so we’ve explained the first level. We’ve explained level one general periods, which is years, level two general periods, which is months. You can also break it down into level three and level four. But it’s tricky because level three is basically two point five day – quote-unquote “days or weeks?”

LS: Weeks. Uh-huh.

CB: And then level four is quote-unquote “five-hour days,” or —

LS: Right.

CB: I was having a conversation with Patrick last night, Patrick Watson, last night actually, about whether it’s even proper to call level three “weeks” and level four “days,” because they’re actually – the increment of time on level three is two point five days and the increment of time on level four is five hours. Because the whole point about the subperiods is that they’re always exactly 1/12th of the period, the general period, just above it.

LS: Right. I mean, and I guess, I mean, there’s some value in trying to figure out how to label them. But just to give a sense of what that looks like time-wise, the level threes tend to be a matter of like, weeks to like a couple months, right?

CB: Okay, yeah.

LS: Yeah. And then the level fours are just like, a matter of, you know, a handful of days at a time. And so that gives you a sense of how quickly they pass and how they kind of like, nest in time.

CB: Okay. So then in that case, then we’ll call them that. So we’ll say level one is years, level two is months, level three is weeks, and level four is days.

LS: Because that’s how people experience them.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Okay, that makes sense. All right. So for the purpose of this discussion, we’re primarily just gonna focus on level one and level two, which is the yearly and monthly periods, because that gives an overview for the entire life, and that’s also the most crucial periods. Most of the principles that we’re gonna talk about that you apply on level one and level two are the same when you’re looking at subperiods of level three and level four, so there’s a lot of interchangeability. It’s just that the lower periods do the same process but in a much shorter duration of like, weeks and days.

LS: Right. And while we will be focusing on level ones and twos here just to introduce the topic and to kind of give you easy examples to look at, it is important to know that it becomes really interesting, like, or even more interesting, I should say, when you do start looking at all of them overlapping – so level ones, twos, threes, and fours – especially when you start to see repeating patterns on like, multiple levels. So it does become more impressive when you look at it at multiple levels, but we’re just introducing the topic today. But just know that as you look at it later yourself.

CB: Yeah. That’s one of the tricky things is that when you start seeing things line up on the weekly and daily level on the subperiods, it’s not just like, major, momentous, decade-long events in a person’s life, which is actually impressive in and of itself, but also you see things lining up down to the very day on level three and level four subperiods. That is when the technique starts getting really impressive and really spooky on some level.

LS: Yeah, really eerie. I was gonna say that I think it was noticing the days even work that like, kind of freaked me out in the beginning to know like, this is super fated, you know? If this can even pinpoint days.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Which is unfortunate because it’s very hard to like, explain that in a short lecture and to make it as impressive, I find when I’m teaching the technique. I used to try, like, I used to use like, Napoleon’s chart, I think, for like, the day he got married, but people have such a hard time even just grasping, trying to explain the level one and level two periods, that when you start trying to throw level three and level four at them in an intro lecture on the technique, it starts getting really messy.

LS: For sure. Yeah, just kind of like, throwing that out there for like, later observations once you start playing with this yourself.

CB: Right. All right. So the final calculation thing we have to mention is that if the Lot of Spirit and the Lot of Fortune fall in the same sign – this is a rule that Valens introduces as like, a side note. He says it and he says it’s important, and then he just goes on and doesn’t explain much about it. But he says if the Lot of Spirit and Lot of Fortune fall in the same sign, then for the purpose of zodiacal releasing, you want to move the Lot of Spirit forward one sign in zodiacal order, and then start the Spirit periods from that sign, and you leave the Lot of Fortune in the natal sign that it’s in and start the fortune periods from there.

LS: Yeah. And I think we’ve both seen that this definitely works. I know that it’s one of the couple things within zodiacal releasing that sounded really arbitrary to me when I first heard it. It’s like, “Why would you do that and why would that work?” But it does seem to work.

CB: Yeah, it’s another one of those ones where you just have to take it for granted that it works, and it works really compellingly. I have a whole section in my course where I just demonstrate a ton of different examples because the Lot of Spirit and the Lot of Fortune, because of the way the calculations work, they’ll tend to – they’ll always fall in the same sign or they’ll tend to fall in the same sign when people are born close to a New Moon or when people are born close to a Full Moon. That’s when this’ll tend to happen. And I just have a whole string of chart examples where the technique works really spectacularly in a bunch of celebrity examples as long as you integrate that rule and you move Spirit forward one sign.

LS: Right.

CB: So I use examples like Harrison Ford’s chart, Linda Goodman’s chart, John Kerry’s chart, there’s just a ton of examples where this consistently works really well in practice. So it’s definitely one of those rules that you want to just take for granted.

LS: Yeah, for sure. And I’ve definitely had clients where I’ve done this with them and it definitely works out.

CB: Yeah. And most calculators, some calculators integrate this automatically, but just pay attention to it because there might be some that don’t or the ones that ask you to tell you the program where you wanna release from or what sign you wanna start from. You wanna make sure if Spirit and Fortune are in the same sign that you move Spirit forward one sign.

LS: Right. Yeah. Those where you need to manually instruct it?

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So that is not the case if you do releasing from the Lot of Eros. You leave Eros in the same sign if it falls together with Fortune or with Spirit. So you do not move Eros. From what I can tell, you just move Spirit forward one sign if it falls together with Fortune.

LS: Right.

CB: All right. So that is how you calculate the technique. But because we live in the 21st century, there’s a bunch of ways that you – instead of like, spending another hour showing by hand how to calculate it, we’re gonna recommend that you calculate it using a software program, and that’s usually how we do it.

LS: Yeah, for sure.

CB: All right. So there used to, for the longest, longest times of software programs, there used to only be one program, which was Delphic Oracle, which could calculate zodiacal releasing. And this is a program that was made by an astrologer named Curt Manwaring, and I wanna give a shout out to Curt because he was an early associate of Project Hindsight that created – and I believe he learned how to program simply so that he could help to create some of the tools necessary, the research tools necessary to research some of these techniques like zodiacal releasing. So without Curt having done that, you know, this research wouldn’t have been possible over the course of the past decade, because for a long, long time until people like myself and Leisa and Robert Schmidt and others started to popularize zodiacal releasing over the past decade, and people like myself started to push Solar Fire or other programs like Solar Fire to integrate it, Curt’s program was the only game in town, and some of the other software companies had no interest in programming. I mean, some of them were only interested in modern techniques and didn’t want to like, integrate, spend the time or the money necessary to integrate into their programs. So Curt did a huge benefit —

LS: Service.

CB: — a huge service to the community by creating Delphic Oracle. And for the longest time, that was the only technique, and some of the texts that I have in some of my example slides will be from Delphic Oracle. So it could also calculate lots plus all the other time lord techniques. It is kind of a difficult program to use because it’s not like, a huge, you know, corporation that’s creating it. It’s just like, one guy.

LS: Right.

CB: So it’s a little bit tricky to use Delphic Oracle. But, nonetheless, that was the program that I used for a large part of the last decade for calculating zodiacal releasing and doing research and that I’m sort of used to. That being said, zodiacal releasing is now available in most major astrology software programs. So it’s available in Solar Fire. If you open up like, a Solar Fire page, you open up the chart, you go to the – you click the reports button on the far right when you’re looking at the chart, and then you go in the top right to the tabulations tab, and then scroll down to the very bottom. You’ll find zodiacal releasing. So it’s in Solar Fire. You can also find it in other major programs like Sirius and hopefully other astrology software programs pretty soon. So, there’s also recently a number of free websites that you can use to calculate zodiacal releasing that are starting to integrate the program. I have not been successful. I got the guys from Astrodienst to integrate whole sign houses about 10 years ago by like, asking them at a UAC, and they went home and did it, which was awesome, and that was like, a big shift, I think, that’s made a big difference over the past decade. Have not been successful in getting them to integrate zodiacal releasing yet. I’m still holding out and hoping they will at some point. If people wanna request that, it might help.

LS: Yeah. I was gonna say if enough people ask, maybe they’ll figure there’s a demand.

CB: Hint, hint.

LS: Right?

CB: However, there’s a bunch of other free websites that have started to spring up recently that are doing, will calculate zodiacal releasing from you. The primary one that I would recommend right now for the purposes of this, because it does it the most cleanly and correctly in terms of calculating not just the zodiacal releasing periods but also calculating your lots for you correctly, is the zodiacal releasing calculator which is on Astro-Seek. So if you do just a search for zodiac  releasing astrology calculator, I think the link for Astro-Seek.com will come up first. And it’s pretty simple. You just enter your birth data and then you tell it if you wanna start from Spirit, Fortune, or Eros. And all three of those in that program are correct, using the calculations that I use.

LS: Right. And that’s really important, because if you happen upon – if you haven’t been using this before and happen upon something else where you either have to put it in yourself or it calculates it differently, you know, and not the way that we would do it, then you might start trying to experiment with the technique and looking at your periods and being confused or feeling like they don’t line up. So it’s really important, especially when you’re first starting out, to make sure that you’re using something that definitely calculates them correctly for you.

CB: Right. Yeah, and so the easiest way to do that I think is the Astro-Seek website at this point. Another website that recently was launched, actually just in the past week, just in the past few days, he finished it. He’s still working on it. But it’s in good working shape, and he said I could announce it is the website ZodiacalReleasing.net now has a very simple and straightforward zodiacal releasing calculator. The other thing I really like about it is that you can export the periods cleanly to a Word document or to a text editor, which is really crucial in terms of… Part of my research process and especially for clients is to export the periods and put them in like, a Word document, and then type notes next to some of the different periods in order to do research or to highlight which ones are important or put delineations for some of them.

LS: Right. And that’s not possible, actually, to do in all of the softwares right now, even the ones that have incorporated zodiacal releasing as a technique. So I’m excited that this has been launched, too. The export feature is super useful.

CB: Yeah, and that’s, it’s also possible to export them in Astro-Seek, and I worked with Petr specifically to do that. But I definitely like the way that the ZodiacalReleasing.net ones export them. So – and the programmer – I think it’s okay to say his name – but the programmer of ZodiacalReleasing.net is Grant Feldman. So thanks to Grant for working with me on that. I appreciate it, as well as, of course, Petr from Astro-Seek. The third free zodiacal releasing software program that I can recommend that’s available on a website is the one that was designed by Kent Bye and Jenn Zahrt, and I had a little bit of input on it as wella which is available at NatalTransits.com/TimeLord.html. And if you, like, do a Google search for that, it’ll probably come up. I’ll put links to all three of these on the description page for this episode on TheAstrologyPodcast.com website. So that one’s cool because that one has Jenn’s unique idea, which was to break up and display the periods graphically rather than displaying them just as text. And the way that they did this, it was like, Jenn’s idea and then Kent Bye programmed it, was to show them as colored blocks of time. So for example, I’ll throw up on the screen here a 25-year Cancer period, let’s say, that starts in 1970 is just a long – on level one, a one long block of time where Cancer is activated. But within that on level two, on the subperiods, on the monthly subperiods, there’s a block of time where it activates Cancer, and you can see how long Cancer is by like, the length of the block, and it’s kind of a long block. Then there’s a 19-month Leo period and a 20-month Virgo period. And then there’s this very tiny, little eight-month Libra period, because Libra periods relative to Cancer periods are very short. So this one’s useful just because it’s, especially when you’re first learning the technique, it shows the duration of the periods much more clearly in terms of their proportion.

LS: Right. Exactly. I was gonna say it’s visually proportional.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Okay. So that one also includes some interpretive stuff that they integrate, and I helped them integrate from my actual, the approach that I take to interpreting the technique. And that’s the other one that’s unique about the NatalTransits.com one is it shows peak periods, which we’ll talk about later, using a little mountain signs. So for those that keep asking me, because there’s no key on the website, one of the mountain peaks is indicating major peak periods, which are angles from Fortune. And one of the other colored mountain peaks are showing moderate and minor peak periods, which are like, 7th and 4th from Fortune versus first and 10th from Fortune.

LS: Right. That actually makes total sense if you know what the peak periods are, and I could see being really confusing if you didn’t.

CB: Yeah, it makes absolutely no sense if you don’t.

LS: Right. Right.

CB: So we need to get a key up at some point.

LS: Yeah.

CB: But it also shows the loosing of the bond, and it also shows angles relative – or it shows, I think, when the sign that contains the most difficult planet or the most positive planet in your chart is activated, and that’s why you’ll see Mars or Jupiter or Saturn or Venus activated at different points, and we’ll talk about later in this episode why you would wanna highlight those periods.

LS: Right.

CB: All right. So those are the three zodiacal releasing periods or programs. That’s how you calculate zodiacal releasing. You use a website because we’re not gonna spend —

LS: Right.

CB: — two hours going over the calculations here. All right. So, at this point, I think it’s time finally, now that we’re an hour and 18 minutes into this, to transition into now that the periods are calculated, how do you interpret them? And that is the question.

LS: Right. Which is the main topic, I would say.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So let’s take a break.

LS: Okay.

CB: Okay?

LS: Yeah.

CB: And regroup and then we’ll continue from here.

LS: Sounds good.

CB: All right. So now that we’ve talked about how to calculate the periods, now we need to actually finally move on to how to interpret them. So let’s introduce our first interpretive principle, which is the concept of peak periods or angles from Fortune. And this is one of the cooler parts of the technique, and I think we have to be careful because I – It’s one of the cooler parts of the technique because it does something that you don’t usually see or you can’t usually do in other techniques, but sometimes I almost overhype it, and I worry that I not oversell but that people get too focused on the peak periods as like, the only part of the technique, and it’s not. It is definitely one of the cooler parts of the technique, but there’s a lot of other cool things as well.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Anyway, so here’s the concept. So find the Lot of Fortune in your chart, whatever sign it is located in natally. That sign will be activated and will be more important than other signs. And then you also wanna identify the other three signs that are angular to that sign, which is to say the 4th sign relative to the Lot of Fortune, the 7th sign relative to the Lot of Fortune, and the 10th sign relative to the Lot of Fortune. Those are what we’re gonna call the Fortune angles or the angles from Fortune, which will coincide when those signs are activated with what we call peak periods within the context of the zodiacal releasing technique.

LS: So you’re basically starting with the Lot of Fortune, as Chris said, and just identifying a particular quadruplicity of four houses, or four signs rather, and those signs will always be the peak periods. And what we mean by “peak periods” is they’re just more important or more active.

CB: Yeah. And this is based on the idea of doing derivative houses or derived houses from the Lot of Fortune, where the sign that contains the Lot of Fortune, the entirety of that sign, becomes the first house. The second sign after the Lot of Fortune becomes the second house. The third sign from Fortune becomes the third house and so on and so forth so that when you’re looking at Fortune houses from this perspective, the sign that the Lot of Fortune is in becomes the first house. And then we’re gonna focus on the other three angular houses relative to the Lot of Fortune, which are the 4th house from Fortune, the 7th house from Fortune, and the 10th house from Fortune. So we’re gonna focus on those, and for the purpose of what we’re looking at right now, we’re gonna ignore all other signs and just say those four signs are the most important. And they’re gonna coincide with what we call peak periods. So how that happens is that, if you wanna study career periods, you start from the Lot of Spirit and you count around the zodiac until it comes to one of these four signs that are angular from the Lot of Fortune.

LS: Right.

CB: And when it does, it will coincide with what we call a peak period, which is a period of heightened importance and heightened activity within the context of the person’s career.

LS: And it’s important to say at the outset that that doesn’t mean quality. We’ll get to quality in a little bit. This is just purely importance and activity.

CB: Yeah, because sometimes people hear “peak period,” and they think that means “good.” But it doesn’t necessarily mean good or experienced as subjectively positive. It just means more active and more important. So because it’s more active and important, sometimes that can coincide with the high point of a person’s career or it can coincide with really important, really pivotal turning points. So “pivotal turning point” is probably a good phrase. But it doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be experienced as more subjectively positive or negative because that could go either way, and it’s gonna depend on other factors that we’ll get into in just a bit.

LS: Right.

CB: But we just wanna initially establish the premise that when you start from the Lot of Spirit and you count around the signs and it comes to one of the angles from the Lot of Fortune, that the activation of that period is gonna tend to coincide in the person’s life with periods of heightened importance and heightened activity within the context of their career.

CB: So, that’s also actually true. I discovered, and this was again my own modification of the technique. Because in Valens, he only does releasing from the Lot of Fortune and releasing from the Lot of Spirit, and he sets up kind of a basic duo there where he more or less says this: release from Spirit for the mind and actions, and release from Fortune for the body and physical things, like health. So – and he actually does introduce this part of it, about talking about peak periods, because he does say at one point that when you release from Spirit and it comes to the sign of the Lot of Fortune or the 10th house from the Lot of Fortune, that this will be an eminent and important time in the person’s life.

LS: Right. Yeah. And specifically with respect to the Lot of Spirit when you’re talking about eminence around career and then when you’re looking at the peak periods from Fortune, it can be particularly important times with respect to health or something else that kind of like, befalls you.

CB: What, angles from Fortune when releasing from Fortune?

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah, I mean, it can be turning points.

LS: Right.

CB: But you don’t, for the most part though, focus that much when you release from Fortune on angles from Fortune. I mean, you do as turning points, but it’s not quite the same as releasing from Spirit and it coming to angles from Fortune as being like, major career peaks.

LS: Right. Yeah.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Right. And then releasing from the Lot of Eros, then, being particularly active and important periods with regard to like, love or relationships.

CB: Right. And that was a modification because, of course, within – shortly after I started learning the technique, it’s like 2005; I’m like, 20, 21 or something like that.

LS: Yeah.

CB: I’m like, “What if you… if you can release from Spirit and Fortune, could you apply it to the Lot of Eros to see when, you know, peak periods would happen in relationships?”

LS: Important astrological discoveries due to adolescence.

CB: Yeah. Adventures in like, early ’20s astrology. And much to my surprise and somewhat excitement, it actually worked. And when I was sort of looking at my own chart and looking at charts of people I knew, the same principles seemed to apply when I did releasing from the Lot of Eros as my own like, modification of the technique. And when I started from the Lot of Eros using Paulus’s calculation and I counted around until it came to a sign that was angular from the Lot of Fortune, that did often seem to coincide with a period of heightened importance and heightened activity within the context of relationships.

LS: Definitely. Yeah.

CB: So that’s become a standard thing that I’ve used in consultations over the past decade. I know it’s a standard thing that you use.

It is a modification, so I do wanna make that clear in terms of like, what is the inherited tradition of what we got from Valens in terms of just releasing from Spirit and Fortune versus this being a modern modification of the technique that I introduced in November of 2005. But it’s one that I feel pretty good about or pretty confident about.

LS: Definitely.

CB: There is a broader question that often then comes up, which is that could you release from other lots? And the answer is I don’t know because it’s not something I’ve looked into and researched a lot. On the one hand, I would think that on a certain level that you could; theoretically, if you can release from Eros and that works, there might be other lots that you could release from that would work. Certainly, at some point, it’s probably gonna become too much or it’s gonna get too complicated or too crazy, because there are so many other lots that you could release from, and there might be some sort of line that you might wanna draw, you know, at some point. I haven’t really concerned – I’ve done some, like, preliminary work with different – releasing from some of the other Hermetic lots, like Nemesis and Necessity and Courage, which is the Lot of Mars. Nemesis is the Lot of Saturn. But I haven’t, I never spent a ton of time researching it because there was already so much I was trying to research and understand just releasing from Spirit and Fortune and Eros. So that was one of the areas of the tradition or of the technique where I’ve just sort of left it for somebody else to research and try to work out at some point and decide if that’s a useful avenue to go down or if it’s not useful.

LS: And it’s definitely an area for greater experimentation and research. I agree. I started playing with the Lot of Nemesis at one point earlier on, but then similarly there’s just plenty to look at with the existing few lots. And I mean, I did start seeing it work it looked like a little bit, but I didn’t do it with enough charts to like, say something more definitive.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Whereas for Spirit and Eros, we do apply in just about every consultation that we’ve done for like, a decade.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So we feel pretty confident about that. And Fortune, we – I did apply. Fortune’s a little tricky because it seems to deal with health matters. It was a little bit more hit and miss whether it worked where it was like, there was some charts where every time they would hit the most difficult period for them – I had like, one client for example where she hit the same period three different times in her life, and each time she had like, a major accident or health issue when it was activating like, the most difficult planet in her chart in the releasing from Fortune. And… but it was like, in her natal chart, she had some placements that naturally predisposed her towards accidents and health issues, whereas in other people, it wasn’t always that consistent because the natal chart wasn’t itself predisposed towards health issues or accidents.

LS: Yeah, for sure. Yeah, I’ve had a similar experience where I don’t use it all the time and for all clients by any means. I use it more sparingly, and I will use it particularly for if people say they already have like, recurrent chronic health issues. That’s often useful because it’s something that’s already happening, and so you can sometimes see like, flare ups of existing problems or that kind of thing. I mean, I’ve definitely seen it occur with other things, like a car accident or like a court case or different things where like, something seems to happen to the person all of a sudden kind of out of their sphere of decision making.

CB: Right.

LS: But, yeah, I don’t use it all the time because of that, and also because of the other thing you said, you know, where it seems to work better when charts like, are already predisposed to have health issues.

CB: Yeah, well, and also just for me, I’m not usually doing medical astrology or trying to make medical or health predictions most of the time, whereas I am commonly talking to clients about their career and their overall life direction —

LS: Right.

CB: — or about relationships and stuff in that area, so that I just naturally gravitated towards doing Spirit and Fortune more often because it was more useful. And the other area was not focused on as much as a primary sort of like, cornerstone of my practice.

LS: Yeah, similarly and also liability. I mean, I will use releasing from Fortune regularly, look at it for myself for instance. And so that’s I think like, a useful thing to experiment with, especially if you have health issues already. I do find it to correlate pretty well with a lot of flare ups for me, you know, of my existing things. But, otherwise, you start getting into like, health prediction, which if the person doesn’t already really comfortable with like, the idea of having health issues or it’s not something they’re already dealing with, you can get into like, gray areas legally with like, practicing medicine without a license, for instance. And especially because most people don’t focus on medical astrology.

CB: Yeah, and that’s just not something I’m touching.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So I don’t.

LS: Yeah. Yeah.

CB: But I look at it sometimes in my own chart, and I know that was one of the early things I think that you may have found impressive or at least I was paying attention when you – early on when I knew you, you had a health crisis thing that sort of flared up, and it was clearly indicated in the zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Fortune periods, both in when it started but also when it eventually kind of died down a little bit or became slightly more manageable.

LS: Yeah. I just looked at it again just to refresh my memory, and it was like, within days. It started up for the first time ever. It was like, a new chronic illness, and it started up within days of the new period starting —

CB: Right.

LS: — a peak period.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So, yeah. So that’s something you can do.

LS: Yeah, I mean, it’s useful to look at for yourself, even if you don’t use it for clients regularly, you know? Experiment it with for yourself.

CB: Yeah, and I’ll do one or two examples later in the loosing of the bond and Fortune periods and how that works out. But for the most part, we’re gonna focus on Spirit and Eros, and most of the rules that we’re gonna introduce for the purpose of this discussion today are gonna be based on releasing from the Lot of Spirit. So especially this one with peak periods, it’s primarily based on releasing from the Lot of Spirit. If it comes to an angular sign from the Lot of Fortune, it’s gonna be a period of heightened importance and heightened activity. So just remember that key word because that’s chosen very deliberately when I say “heightened importance and heightened activity” and like, don’t – sometimes people start substituting other things for what they think “peak period” means, which really varies from like, person to person, and they start like, projecting a lot of things that it doesn’t mean. So remember the phrase that I’m using is “a period of heightened importance and heightened activity” when a peak period is activated. All right. So this is true on a general level on level one —

LS: Right.

CB: — and those are the most notable ones, if a person hits a peak period that lasts for eight years or that lasts for, you know, 15 years or 30 years. And that will be a very, you know, active and important period of the person’s career. But it also is activated – the peak periods are activated on the subperiod levels as well, on the monthly level for activating a certain number of months, but also on the weekly and the daily level.

LS: Right. So if it’s activated on level one, I mean, one of the things you can kind of see already is that that will also, similarly to what we were talking about with the lots earlier, kind of show you a variable in terms of how a chart will play out. For instance, if someone gets a peak period during like, say, what’s considered by most people as the prime of their lives – you know, like 30s, 40s, 50s – if you have a peak period then, then that’s gonna be really active and important when most people kind of have an expectation of having greater active and important period for career. But it doesn’t always happen then, so it happens variably.

CB: Yeah.

LS: So for some people, they have a peak period really early, and then for some people, they have a peak period really late.

CB: Right.

LS: And so that’s another interesting way you can kind of watch how this plays out and how different charts and lives differ from each other.

CB: Right. Yeah. I mean, “Where does your peak period fall?” is one of the first questions you should ask yourself. So right now everybody, especially if you’re new learning this technique, should calculate the Lot of Fortune, what sign it falls in your chart and identify the four signs that are angular from that which are your peak periods, then do your, run your Spirit periods or calculate those, and figure out when your level one peak periods will occur.

You can also do that with your current level two peak periods. So and then the question becomes is the peak period something that’s happening earlier in the life, if it’s something happening in the middle of the life, or it’s happening somewhere later in the life.

So this was the first part of the technique that when we were doing the research studies at Project Hindsight we were just starting to discover and that was really impressive. And this was the thing that really caught my eye and always is still one of the main eye-catching things that I start with because it becomes the centerpiece for the entire technique in some ways.

LS: Right.

CB: So, at the time, it was the most impressive because in 2005, yeah, 2005, 2006, we were applying it to then – what was then the current president and one of the most recent presidential elections that had taken place, which was George Bush versus Al Gore in the US 2000 election.

So what was weird about that is that when we did that – and let me throw, for the video version, those charts up – so when we did that, what was bizarre about it is like, it was this, you know, 2,000-year-old technique that was just recovered from a translation of a 2nd century text. No astrologers had been using it in hundreds of years, and for some reason when we applied it to the timed charts of the two people in one of the most recent presidential elections, it showed that – and I guess this is our first chart example, so let’s actually walk through it. So first we have the time chart of George W. Bush, right?

LS: M’hmm.

CB: And just to describe it for those that are doing just – listening to just the audio version, so he has the Lot of Fortune in Scorpio. So that means the four fixed signs that are angular from Fortune are gonna be the four peak periods. So that means Scorpio is a peak period, the sign that contains the Lot of Fortune. Aquarius is a peak period, which is the 4th from Fortune. Taurus is a peak period, which is 7th from Fortune, and Leo is a peak period, which is the 10th from Fortune. So his Lot of Spirit is actually in Taurus. So if we wanted to study his career periods, we would start from the sign of Taurus and do the releasing or start the releasing from that sign. So he was born in 1946, and his Lot of Spirit’s in Taurus, so that means the first chapter of his life lasts for eight years. So for eight years he’s in a Taurus period, right?

LS: Right. Right.

CB: From 1946 to 1954. Then once that eight years is finished, it moves to the next sign in zodiacal order, which is Gemini, for 20 years from 1954 to 1974. Then once that sign is finished, it moves to Cancer for 25 years from 1974 to 1998 for 25 years. And then once that 25 years is up, it moves to Leo for 19 years from 1998 until 2017. So what is notable about that, of course, is that 19-year Leo period that started in 1998 is the 10th sign from Fortune, which means it is a quote-unquote “peak period.” So it’s a period of heightened importance and activity in theory according to the theory of the technique within the context of his career, because we started from the Lot of Spirit.

LS: Right. And what would also be really notable is it would be the first peak period since he was like, between zero and eight years old.

CB: Yeah, so technically he did start out in a peak period since he started out in an eight-year Taurus period that was 7th from Fortune. But it’s like, unless something extraordinary happens, you’re not – if you start out in a peak period, you’re not necessarily gonna do much in the first eight years of your life.

LS: Right.

CB: There is an exception to that, and I’ll give an example later where we can see somebody who did very early in their life when they started out in a peak period. But for the purpose of this, you know, he didn’t hit this peak period until later in his life between 1998 and 2017. So what’s interesting about that is that George Bush, shortly after he went into this peak period in 1998, launched his presidential campaign and then went through all the way through the 2000 election and eventually became president and was inaugurated in early 2001.

LS: Right.

CB: So just that premise alone, like, this is one of the first chart examples I was seeing with this technique. And credit to Schmidt, because Schmidt was the one that initially found this as part of the study group, and other people at the study group were like, Nick Dagan Best. I think Mark Kuenzel was there, who was a Kepler student and was one of the first presidents of AYA. Curt Manwaring was there, Ellen Black of course, who was Schmidt’s wife. So we were going through these chart examples, and that in and of itself is bizarre and impressive because that’s exactly what Valens says in this passage from the anthology would happen – that if a native, if you release from Spirit and it comes to the 10th sign from Fortune, that he says something like the person will come into eminence and leadership at that time. And for at least this native who was born in the 20th century, that was true because he became president of the United States.

LS: Right.

CB: So that’s not the most bizarre part though. The other part of this that one might immediately wonder is what about his challenger? So his challenger in the 2000 election was famously Al Gore, who even though he won the popular vote, he did not win the electoral college and therefore did not become president. So, here is Al Gore’s chart, for which we also have a timed chart for, and this is one of the tricky things about the technique, which if you don’t know or can’t tell already, one of the things that’s a restriction about it is you have to have a timed birth chart.

LS: Right.

CB: Not only that, but it really has to be a pretty well-timed and accurately timed birth chart, because if the lots you’re using are anywhere close to the sign boundaries or anywhere close to the cusp of a sign where it could fall in one sign or another, that’s gonna completely throw off the periods if there’s any ambiguity because they last for so long where it could throw the periods off by a decade or up to like, three decades.

LS: Right. Right. And you know, so you can see why it’s so important to have accurate birth times, especially for some of these traditional techniques, because they can be super accurate in practice if you do have a time, like an accurate time, but they can be completely wrong otherwise.

CB: Yeah, and it just throws the entire thing off. And it really sometimes comes down to a matter of minutes —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — because the lots are based on like, measuring the distance from one – from like, planet A to planet B, and then measuring the same distance from the Ascendant, the lots move through the chart pretty rapidly. And so there can be a change where sometimes, you know, a person can be born or I’ve seen like, twins that are born just a few minutes apart, but like, the lots change in that period, and so suddenly their zodiacal releasing periods are just completely different, and they hit peak periods in completely different parts of their life.

LS: Right, which is like, great if you’re actually dealing with twins who are actually, you know, born at those differences in time. Not great if it’s just inaccurate or vague.

CB: Yeah. Well, and it becomes a good rectification technique then too if you’re trying to fine tune a time, because sometimes you can back form the time pretty well using zodiacal releasing if you’re trying to narrow it down within like, a few minute time frame and there’s lots that are close to a sign boundary.

LS: Right. Yeah, I’ve tried to do that before.

CB: Well, yeah, because flipside is that if you’ve got a client where you’ve got a relatively accurate time but there’s a lot that’s right at like, 29 and 58 minutes —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — of a sign, you’re often gonna have to do a quick rectification in order to use the technique during the course of the consultation, because it could go either way.

LS: Right.

CB: And you won’t know until you start talking to them about their life and seeing that their career peak happened in like, this part of their life versus this part of their life.

LS: Right.

CB: Yeah. So it’s both a frustration as well as a bonus in terms of doing rectification.

LS: Yeah, for sure.

CB: What were you about to say?

LS: Which is like, useful if the client is older, and so they have enough built up of life experience to kind of give you input on peak periods.

CB: Right.

LS: Not useful at all if they’re like, 20.

CB: Yeah. If you’re younger, you have had less of your life events occur so far, and therefore you have much less to work with in terms of rectification.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. All right. That’s giving me bad flashbacks, so I don’t – of like, trying to rectify —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — really young charts where there hasn’t been much that happened yet.

LS: Yeah. Yeah.

CB: But sometimes actually that’s not always – it’s not that that’s not true, but if you pay enough attention, you can see the early life events that were important relative to that time. Like, that was actually – I mean, when I was studying my zodiacal releasing periods, I was only in my early 20s. But I remembered some of the formative and important life events, like running for class president in like, elementary school and I was in like, a little peak period at the time, or things like that or like getting a promotion or studying another friend’s chart of getting a promotion at like, a pizza place to like, manager or something, and he had like, a major loosing of the bond transition period at that time.

LS: No. It still totally works, I mean, which is actually funny to watch, I think. I mean, I always thought it was funny when I looked back at my, you know, like, childhood and adolescent events and saw them show up in the technique. But it’s just a matter of that young person themselves needs to have the memory and also the perspective on those things to like, tell you when those things happened, and to think they were important enough to say at that point and things like that.

CB: Yeah. Well, and sometimes the most important life events haven’t happened yet. And also one of the issues with this technique that people actually struggle with sometimes in learning it is sometimes you need some distance from the events in order to gain perspective about their importance. Because —

LS: Right.

CB: — you could be doing something that you think is like, the most important your life right now, but in the long term over the entire span of looking at your life from a bird’s eye view, the most important thing may not have even happened yet or it may just be getting started in the background and you don’t even realize that that thing you started like, a few weeks ago is actually gonna become your life’s work or something.

LS: No, I agree. Yeah. And that’s kind of what I meant about the perspective of doing young people’s, you know, rectification with that. It’s like they might have some of that, but sometimes not.

CB: Right. Well, it can be frustrating also because the person’s perspective of what they think the most important thing is or turning point or something may not necessarily be. And sometimes the technique is weird because it provides a level of objectivity and objective perspective on the life that we’re not always used to dealing with and can sometimes be unsettling or uncomfortable in some way because it’s more objective in some sense.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Not for everyone.

LS: Yeah.

CB: I don’t think we’ve had that much problem with that, but I just know it’s one of the things that we run into sometimes with the technique. And I think I was gonna save this discussion for later, but maybe I don’t know if it’s time to like, slip it in, but like, sometimes where people are like, “Well, the technique’s not, it doesn’t work for me” or something like that.

LS: Right.

CB: And sometimes I find that people that say that don’t fully understand – either A, don’t understand the technique and they’re not applying it properly and they just need somebody to sit down and go through it with them. But B, sometimes it’s that issue of there’s an issue or a disconnect versus how an objective observer would look at that person’s life and classify different periods of importance versus how the person is used to looking at their own life subjectively in classifying different periods of importance. And obviously, there’s a discussion that could be had there about what’s more important or what’s accurate or true or valid in some sense in terms of a subjective perspective versus the objective one. But I think sometimes there is an issue that people run into when first learning the technique about having expectations of what they should see versus what the technique is actually showing them is important about their life.

LS: Yeah. I mean, and that’s obviously like, a huge meta discussion, I agree. I mean, I have run into that occasionally in the past talking through people’s timing, and most people like, click with some things that are being highlighted and like, “Oh yeah, that was a really important time.” Occasionally, I do find, you know, some people who don’t, and it’s either they’re not remembering something that happened then, which is like, a huge issue with this technique.

CB: Right, which is like, huge because it’s entirely predicated on – going through your past chronology is entirely predicated on you having a good memory for like, events and dates in your life.

LS: Good memory or else good journaling, good Gmail records —

CB: Right.

LS: — like, where you emailed people about things. I’ve actually used all of that, and it’s been really useful. I love the Gmail search —

CB: Right.

LS: — for this.

CB: Well, I mean, usually talking through it with clients is fine because —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — you’re able to talk through them with the technique. But then, like – I bring this up because I was in like, a work – like, I did a workshop once where it was a several day long intensive on zodiacal releasing, and there was like, one person that was getting progressively more and more annoyed as it went, because she didn’t think it was working in her chart. And finally by the final day, I would gone through all the examples I wanted to go through and we’d gone through a couple of class examples where we clearly worked it through and saw how it was working in someone’s life. And I was just like, “Let’s deal with this head on.” And I’m like, “Let’s throw your chart up, and let’s work through your chronology and see if it’s really not working,” which is what she felt at the time, or if there’s something throwing it off or what. And we went through her chronology and just slowly worked through it, applying the principles that we had outlined in the lecture and in the workshop. And once we actually talked through it with her, like, she then understood the application and then it started to make sense but needed that kind of, it’s like, hand-holding to like, walk through it gradually and talk about it and sometimes realize or acknowledge the things that were important about her life that were turning points that she was just taking for granted. Because that’s the other issue, and we’ve talked about this a lot on the podcast before, but just people taking things for granted in their life because they’ve become accustomed to them or they’ve had to adapt to those, and they just assume it’s the same for everybody. Like, somebody has like, a major, let’s say, like a traumatic life experience in childhood, and they just like, assume everyone has traumatic experiences in childhood or they just normalize it in that way or they have a major life-changing event that happens when they’re in their Saturn return or they’re 28 or something, and they just assume everybody has that in that same exact way.

LS: Right. Yeah, I mean, I think that brings up a couple of things. I mean, one is just the general sense of like, while some of these will definitely or should definitely stick out to you if you start looking back through, like, maybe not every single one will immediately come to mind, but some of them at least should if you look at your past peak periods. I mean, there’s also that other element of, you know, what is any astrological consultation good for or any one-on-one interaction good for, which is sometimes having that other person who’s outside you, you know, whatever techniques you’re using to kind of like, throw a different light on your life or to ask you questions that you didn’t think to ask yourself.

CB: Right.

LS: You know. So I mean, I think that’s one piece of it. I think the other piece is that, you know, it doesn’t show everything that happens to you. I mean, I was gonna talk about this later, too, but I mean, you – you know, while it shows really important things, it doesn’t show every single thing because it’s one technique.

CB: Right. It’s not the only technique.

LS: Right. There are lots of techniques and lots of things happening at once, at any given moment in time, so I think that’s like, an occasional objection to looking at the peak periods and being, “Oh, that wasn’t what I think is the most important thing.” Well, there can be other things happening at points. But I mean, I think sometimes what I’ve noticed with the active and important is also like, prominent. And so maybe I had some sort of like, subjectively, personally important thing that happened for me, but it wasn’t particularly like, outwardly, you know, prominent.

CB: Or, it – well, sometimes it’s like, it’s the thing – it’s not what I wanted to happen. Like, something —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — important does happen, but they’re like, “But I wanted this.” And I’m like, that – it’s like, that doesn’t matter.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Like, what happens is what objectively occurred in your life at this time. And if you got like, a job promotion at that time, even if it wasn’t a promotion you wanted, that is an active and important turning point in your overall career chronology.

LS: Right.

CB: And it’s like stuff like that where people almost do require that hand-holding to learn this technique and to adapt it to their life, but it’s just like, I can’t – we don’t – obviously, I can’t make that personal connection with every single person that learns the technique, and that’s one of the challenges I’ve had over the past decade of teaching it and needing to make handouts for every person so that they at least have their periods in front of them, you know, in a workshop on this, and sometimes fill them in to some extent or try to work individually with people. But, yeah, it’s one of the challenges.

LS: For sure. Yeah.

CB: All right.

LS: I mean, I think, you know, just as a like, tangent for like, you know, people to like, think about later, I mean, I think sometimes what I think about with this is that it can show really active and important periods, particularly with regard to like, things that are externally observable though not always but often, you know, prominent. That doesn’t mean it’s the only things that are important to you. You know what I mean?

CB: Yeah.

LS: Just because this does show important and active periods, that doesn’t mean that like, nothing else can be important for you and therefore this is hinging on that.

CB: Yeah, I mean, there’s other stuff going on with transits, with progressions, with annual profections, which is the other major technique that I use in all consultations. It’s like, my actual practice. And part of the reason that we’re outlining this technique here is I feel, you know, I’ve had the thing obviously that I mentioned at the beginning of a tension in doing the podcast now for almost 200 episodes with, you know, how much of my techniques that I’ve developed over the course of my career as an astrologer to like, give away for free in the podcast versus how much to hold back for my courses, which are for paying students who like, pay to support my research and work and life and livelihood. And that’s been helped out by patrons and Patreon, and one of the reasons we’re able to do stuff like this is because the podcast is now being helped and supported by patrons. So thanks everyone who is a patron who’s supporting this episode. It makes a huge difference and allows me to have more advanced discussions where we’re kind of like, divulging like, more advanced, important techniques like this. So that’s part of it. I’m trying to think of where else I was going with that thought.

LS: Uh-huh. I’m not sure.

CB: Okay.

LS: Sometimes I know. I don’t know right now.

CB: Whether to put it out but also just learning – there’s just something about like, learning traditional astrology and dealing – trying to introduce techniques like this is complicated and requires a lot of precursors.

LS: Right, precursors and dialogue. And so if you’re putting it out there like this, I don’t know if that’s where you were going with it or not, but like, sometimes then you don’t have that component necessarily of that dialogue around or that like, let me point out, you know, something you might be missing if you’re not, if this isn’t making sense yet.

CB: Yeah. Well, it’s just hard to have that dialogue with every person or something.

LS: Right.

CB: Anyways, there’s just a tension between how much to put out there versus how much to hold back.

LS: Right.

CB: Yeah. All right. There was some other important point that I meant to make there, but I lost it.

LS: Okay.

CB: So, I guess let’s get back to talking about the peak period.

LS: Yes.

CB: We’ll see if I recover that point later. So we had a huge digression just now as I was talking about the 2000 presidential election, and I wanna go back into that part of the discussion because – so we showed how the theory of the technique as Valens outlined the concept of peak periods, which is starting from Spirit to study the career, it coming to an angle from Fortune and indicating a period of heightened importance and activity in a person’s career and how that worked out for Bush, who started a 19-year peak period starting in 1998 and then became president just a year or two later.

So his challenger in the 2000 election was Al Gore, who was vice president at the time from 1992 to 2000 or 2001. And in Al Gore’s chart, he has the Lot of Fortune in Aries. So that means that the four cardinal signs are gonna be the peak periods. So Aries, which is the sign of the Lot of Fortune, Cancer which is 4th from Fortune, Libra which is 7th from Fortune, and Capricorn which is 10th from Fortune. So those are the four peak periods. His Lot of Spirit is located in Scorpio, so he starts in a 15-year Scorpio period as the first chapter of his life from the moment of birth when he was born in 1948 all the way until 1963. Then once that 15 years is up, it moves to Sagittarius for 12 years from 1963 to 1974. Then in 1974, he began a 27-year Capricorn period. So this Capricorn period, of course, is the 10th sign from Fortune, so that is the beginning of his peak period starting in 1974. And right around that time is actually when he began his political career and became a politician. Gets elected to public office. Later about 17 years into that peak period, he starts hitting major peak periods and a major transition point on the sublevels on level two, and we’ll come back to later and explain why it was actually a loosing of the bond that occurred around 1992. And he became vice president – so he’s picked as Bill Clinton’s running mate. They end up winning the 1992 presidential election, and he becomes vice president, which it turns out is the highest political appointment that he’ll have in his lifetime, presumably at this point I think safe to say. But then what happens is that his 27-year peak period runs out in the first half – I think it was in the spring of 2001. And that was just a few months after George W. Bush was inaugurated as president and Al Gore lost the 2000 presidential election.

So this then becomes an even more striking or stunning example because it means we’re not just talking about one person’s chart, like George Bush starting a 19-year peak period starting in 1998, but it turned out what would happen was that his challenger was just ending and winding up a 27-year peak period roughly at the same time.

LS: Right.

CB: And that becomes really striking.

LS: Yeah, it’s a really striking contrast for sure, to see one starting up and one ending —

CB: Right.

LS: — right next to each other.

CB: So, the implications of that are obviously very intriguing, and I began applying it to my chart but also just applying it to other eminent nativities and finding that peak periods were a really useful thing to look at in the charts of other eminent people and found a bunch of examples.

So, one of my favorite examples is George Lucas, who we have a timed chart for. And let’s see, so George Lucas has – it’s a little tricky, because he has the Sun is very close to sunrise in his chart, so the Sun is very close to the Ascendant. It’s technically barely below the horizon, but it’s close enough that his chart actually works better as a day chart, so I treat this as a what I call a modified day chart. Following that rule, using it as a day chart, his Lot of Fortune is in Aquarius. So the four peak periods are the four fixed signs. And his Lot of Spirit just barely falls in Virgo, so he starts out in a 20-year Virgo period from 1944 to 1964. He goes into an eight-year Libra period from 1964 to 1971. And then he goes into a 15-year Scorpio period, which is 10th from Fortune, so this is his 15-year peak period from 1971 to 1986. And, of course, the movie Star Wars was released in May of 1977, and the first of the Indiana Jones movies was released in June of 1981, and these became the two sort of movie trilogies that he became the most well known for, and they were both released basically or started during the course of this 15-year peak period. And this was, I think, you know, objectively, one could say the height of George Lucas’s career as a filmmaker when he did the Star Wars trilogy as well as when he started the Indiana Jones trilogy.

LS: Yeah, that’s a good example for sure.

CB: Yeah, so that’s one of my favorite examples as a moderate, not extreme Star Wars nerd that George Lucas’s peak periods actually coincide perfectly with the release of Star Wars and Indiana Jones and many other such examples. So this is the point where in the 18-hour zodiacal releasing lecture, I just like, go through a ton of examples and keep throwing out different peak periods to show how different, especially eminent people how their peak periods tend to coincide with what are, again, the most active and sometimes the most important parts of their career.

So who are some other examples that I used for that? One of the recent examples that I like to use is Robert Downey Jr., because his is really interesting because in Robert Downey Jr’s chart, you know, he’s actually been an actor for a really long time. His Lot of Fortune is in Virgo, so his peak period should be theoretically in the mutable signs. His Lot of Spirit’s in Cancer, so he starts out in a 25-year Cancer period, then it goes to Leo for 19 years. And what’s interesting is this Leo period – you know, he had a whole two-decade long career as an actor and was a pretty prominent actor in the 1990s and early 2000s, but he really struggled with like, drug and alcohol abuse, and there was a period in the early 2000s where it looked like he was gonna throw it all away and that he was kind of on his way downward in some sense. That he had accidentally sort of self-destructed or destroyed his career, but then suddenly he switches in 2008 into a 20-year Virgo period, which is the sign that contains the Lot of Fortune. And of course what happens around that time is he ends up starring, he ends up getting this role in this comic book movie for what was kind of a blow off comic book character, which is Iron Man. But then it ends up being like, wildly successful and spawning this whole series of subsequent like, comic book superhero movies that’s become such a phenomenon over the course of the past decade, but it really starts with and perfectly coincides the release of that first Iron Man movie and him getting that role coincides with the onset of his 20-year peak period.

LS: Yeah, that makes sense. And we’ll talk about this a bit later, but I mean, sometimes people worry about ending their peak period, whether they’re just like, “Nothing good will happen after that” or they’ll be washed up or something. And oftentimes, whatever you do during your peak period is not only really important but is something that you can in fact carry through. It’s just whatever you did during your peak period becomes very important.

CB: Yeah, and I’ll talk about that. So this does – one of the weird things, it doesn’t just work for like, politicians and movie stars and stuff like that, but I’ve also found it works really well for like, normal people or even like, astrologers. Especially prominent astrologers like Demetra George is an example that I like to use in terms of her peak period coinciding with a crucial part in her career, although it’s kind of tied into another concept of angular triads that we’ll get to next, so maybe I should hold off on that example for just a second.

LS: Yeah, probably.

CB: One that I did wanna mention though here because it ties into something that was already mentioned earlier is one of my other recent favorite example charts, which is Justin Bieber.

LS: Right. Which we like to laugh at.

CB: Well, I mean, I am a big fan. So, this is Justin Bieber’s chart. He has the Lot of Fortune in Aries, so it’s the cardinal signs then that are the peak periods – so Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn. What’s weird about his chart, though, is the Lot of Spirit is in Cancer, so that means he actually starts off in a 25-year Cancer period, so he starts off in a 25-year peak period for the first 25 years of his life. So this is actually an example of somebody who their peak period isn’t something that comes super late in life but instead they actually start off with it early on, and in fact he became like, a superstar and like, a worldwide – you know, he’s a musician and a singer and became a worldwide sensation starting with posting – like, his mom posting some videos of him on YouTube. And then he was discovered by like, a music producer as a result of that when he was still really young and then eventually became, you know, like, a huge sort of superstar, I guess, from that point forward while he was still very young in his life and while he was still in this 25-year peak period.

LS: Definitely. And I think we’ve both seen like, multiple examples of how that works when someone’s born into a peak period or starts a peak period very early in life where they’re either like, child prodigies or someone discovered for something very young, or for this kind of like, everyday people examples that I ever see, it’s usually just like, people who did really well in school or got lots of awards or like, were prominent in some way at an age-appropriate level. So there’s kind of like, two things like that that can happen.

CB: Yeah. I had somebody that was like, a client I think I used an example at one point who was like, a chess prodigy as a child, and her major peak periods were very early on in her life.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah, so obviously that doesn’t happen for everybody. Not everybody’s like, a child prodigy or hits major things early on, and sometimes it’s like that can delay things so that it’s the later peak that happens much later on that does become important. Like Bush was almost an example of that since he started off with an eight-year Taurus period, and then it wasn’t until the later later peak when he hit Leo that he became president. But sometimes I just wanted to use that as an example where sometimes you do see people hitting important stuff very early in their life.

LS: Right.

CB: And with Justin Bieber, obviously, we don’t know the rest of his story or how things are gonna play out in the future. But it’s a pretty good chance that he’ll – that’s funny. We have a delivery?

LS: Yeah. Should we just ignore it?

CB: Let’s just leave it.

LS: Okay… So, yeah.

CB: So, I mean, there’s a pretty good chance that – you know, I don’t wanna make too many assumptions, but the level of stardom that Justin Bieber achieved while he was a teenager and in his early 20s while he was in this 25-year peak period, it would be hard – I think people would be hard-pressed to like, have that happen again or recreate that again to that level later on in his life. And I think we can pretty much assume without making too many judgments or like, subjective things that that’s probably will objectively be the highest point in his career because it was such a weird confluence of things that happened that allowed that to occur that we’re both – and this really actually gets to something that’s important about understanding the nature of zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Spirit and hitting Fortune angles is that what we’re looking at there is the confluence between like, choices and deliberate actions that the person is taking. And sometimes they’re in their talents in some sense, which are partially the results of actions or what they do and how they apply themselves. We’re looking at the confluence of that, of choices, with their circumstances and the things that are external that are outside of their control. And when a person is hitting Fortune peaks when you’re releasing from Spirit, what you’re seeing is something about the confluence between their actions falling into alignment with their circumstances and lining up well or in some instances lining up perfectly so that the person is in the right place and is doing the right thing at the right time so that they’re able to fully actualize their potential versus sometimes, you know, there’s the opposite scenario where sometimes a person can be, you know, really good at something or have the right talents or be even very skilled or gifted at something, but if they’re not in the right place at the right time, it almost doesn’t matter because they’re not able to fully hit or manifest the highest form of their potential just because their circumstances or their environment isn’t conducive to that.

LS: Yeah. I remember you saying that very early on when I first started looking at the zodiacal releasing periods, and you can actually watch it if you start watching your periods going forward or watch other people’s periods, but it’s easiest probably with your own, especially on the lower levels since they’re more quickly moving. But you can actually watch this occur, I think, you know, when you have your own peak periods and kind of what sets the stage for you to be able to have whatever event occurs at that time. And I think if you watch it going forward often enough, it’s actually pretty profound noticing that intersection, and I think that’s also part of why that this technique kind of shows prominence but maybe not something that’s only internally important or something on the peak periods, because it is that confluence of like, chance which also involves the outer world outside of you and your own volition or your own desires and what you’re going for. And so like, if you only have your own desires, like, that doesn’t – that’s not what this technique is about. It’s about that combination, which is really fascinating.

CB: Yeah, I mean, because in his instance, part of the confluence was that he was talented as a singer, despite your disparaging statements earlier; I’m kind of offended by that.

LS: I am not the only one.

CB: I mean, all right. That’s neither here nor there. But you know, despite being incredibly talented, despite what Leisa says and despite, you know, he was actually in a talent show competition, and he came in second. And I actually read his biography, and he talks about this. And I don’t know how much of it’s like, just like, his actual personal reflections versus just like, a puff piece by his management at the time, but there’s some piece of it that’s true, which is that he was in a talent show competition and he came in second before he was discovered, and he was kind of discouraged by that. And I’ll actually show some of the subperiod later to show why, because there’s actually an interesting reason for why that was in terms of the things that were activated in his chart. He and then his mom filmed it and put it on YouTube, and then she started putting other videos of him singing on YouTube. So that’s like, the action, and that’s the putting the thing out there. But the other confluence that happened is that he was discovered, where there was a music producer who saw the videos and came across. Like, he certainly – he started getting follows, and he started getting a following and people were impressed by him and developing an audience. But then this one music producer discovered him and that led to a whole series of events that were partially out of his control where he was kind of in the right place at the right time to become like, that guy. And that’s that other piece that was really important for him, but it’s something that’s kind of important for everybody, it turns out, in some way.

LS: Yeah, definitely. And I mean, I think this is part of also what really profoundly shows to me using this technique the element of luck in terms of it’s not only your talents, your inherent talents or your abilities or whatever. It’s also how the world interacts with you, and you only have control over part of that equation. And I’ve really noticed like, how that can show up in people’s charts with like, they can be really, I don’t know, like, sometimes not have as much talent as you might think the next person, but they can really blow up because they like, have extraordinary luck pieces going on here. Or they can be like, you think everything looks completely fine, but they’re not hitting peak periods or they’re not hitting whatever in this technique, and, you know, they’re not being noticed.

CB: Right.

LS: So, I mean, and that’s a broad statement, but you can really see some of these specifics play out that way.

CB: Yeah, it just comes back to this whole concept of like, chance and fortune and circumstance versus your intellect and your actions and your abilities and what you put out into the world.

LS: Right.

CB: And the whole interaction between those two that’s really at its core what the technique studies. And that’s one of the reasons why in my approach to it, it’s a little bit more bare bones, and sometimes people want to ask about putting all these other complicated things on top of it, but I feel like doing that sometimes might try to turn it into something that it’s not. Because it’s not always – like with annual perfections for example, you get into a lot of detailed things as I’ve shown on the podcast and my courses about like, the condition of the ruler and like, the house that the ruler’s in and the house that’s activated and the quality of the sign and transits and all this other stuff. But the approach to zodiacal releasing that I’ve cultivated is a little bit more simple than that because of what the technique is actually showing in terms of the confluence of those two things and trying to focus on letting that stand out and speak for itself through the person’s chronology.

LS: Yeah.

CB: And sometimes the way to do that, as we’ll maybe talk about that a little bit later, is by studying the person’s past and studying their chronology through the lens of zodiacal releasing, you can see what their trajectory is, and by establishing it by the combination of studying their chronology with zodiacal releasing and establishing their trajectory, you can then sort of predict or chart, you know, based on their current trajectory where things are gonna head in the future. And that becomes the foundation of prediction using zodiacal releasing. It’s not just the technique objectively saying these periods should be peak periods and blah blah blah – this should be a good period and bad period and transition, whatever – you can do that, but it really becomes a much more effective predictive technique when combined with some knowledge of the person’s past chronology and trajectory, because then you can really plot the future much more effectively.

LS: Definitely.

CB: All right. So where does that leave us? Did you have an example in terms of – I have other examples, but I don’t think I need to go through them yet —

LS: Right.

CB: — or at this stage. Do you have other examples of peak periods you wanted to mention?

LS: Yeah, I have a good Spirit peak period. I don’t know if you have the chart there. It was the one labeled Spirit.

CB: I – if you wanna talk about it —

LS: Okay.

CB: — I can see if I can pull it up.

LS: Sure. Okay. So this person had – I’m trying to remember where the lots are. The Lot of Fortune was in Capricorn, and the Lot of Spirit, I believe, was in Virgo. And so yeah – not that one. So, they spent the first 20 years in Virgo, and then they switched to Libra after that, and Libra is only an eight-year period. And so I kind of liked this example because – yeah, there’s the chart if you’re watching it visually. Oh, where did it go? So if you – so I like this because sometimes people worry if their peak periods are short. Like Libra’s only eight years or Taurus is only eight years. And so important things I’ve noticed can still really happen; it just happens more quickly sometimes during that peak period. And so once this person switched into Libra, which is an eight-year peak period from the Lot of Fortune being in Capricorn, they first got a job early on in their field for the first time ever at the beginning of that peak period. And then later on, when it hit Libra level one and Capricorn level two, which would be 10th from Fortune on the first level and then the sign of Fortune itself on level two, they got a job that was even closer to the specific of what they would end up in. And then by the end of that level two period, they actually got hired by the company that they would later become the director of. And so then by the end of the Libra peak period, which was only eight years long, the former director was kind of asked to leave and they became the new director just after this peak period ended.

CB: Okay. All right. So that’s good. So it’s like, okay, that’s pretty kind of complicated.

LS: Well, it’s hard because the —

CB: What’s the short synopsis of – so at the start of the peak period they what?

LS: So at the start of the peak period they got a job kind of like, adjacent to what they ended up in, but it was like, in the same realm.

CB: Okay.

LS: And you can see, I mean, if they started out with Virgo, that’s only 20 years, right?

CB: So, their Lot of Fortune is in Capricorn, so the cardinal signs are the peak periods. Spirit is in…

LS: Spirit.

CB: Is definitely in – okay. Zero Virgo, so they start out in a 20-year Virgo period —

LS: Right.

CB: — and so you’re talking about at the start of an eight-year Libra period.

LS: Libra period. Yes.

CB: They begin in a job that’s almost —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — what they later do.

LS: Exactly. And then when they hit Libra level one and then Capricorn level two, which is —

CB: We haven’t introduced —

LS: Level two?

CB: This’ll be our —

LS: We mentioned.

CB: This will be our first example of level two.

LS: Okay.

CB: So I just wanna…

LS: I think we – okay, I think we mentioned it with a couple of the other ones, but —

CB: Okay.

LS: So Libra level one and then Capricorn level two, which I always notice, when it starts piling up peak periods on more than one level, it becomes particularly important time for them. And so it’s 10 signs from the Lot of Fortune for the level one, and then it’s the sign of Lot of Fortune itself for level two, and so they’re both peak periods.

CB: Okay.

LS: So, multiple peak periods going on.

CB: So that’s a good interpretive principle then we’re introducing at this point, which is that when a person is hitting peak periods on multiple levels, those periods are much more important.

LS: Particularly important.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah. Yeah. And so at the beginning of that overlap between the level one and two peak periods, they got hired for something that was very similar to what they ended up in. And then by the end of that level two peak period, they actually got hired to the company that they would later become the director of. And then by the end of that level one peak period, the former director was asked to leave, and then they started on their course of becoming the director soon after that peak period.

CB: Okay. So they became, reached the highest point in their chosen career field more or less during the eight-year peak period?

LS: M’hmm.

CB: But it was a process of getting up to that highest point during the course of that eight years?

LS: Exactly. And I know that that is a question that sometimes people ask, that things don’t always happen immediately upon the start of the peak period.

CB: Yeah, that was a question that actually came in on Twitter yesterday which is like, “Do you expect the peak period to begin and the events to happen immediately as soon as the general period begins?” And the answer is no, not always.

LS: No, not always the most important thing or the ultimate thing that will happen, but something important. You may not notice that it’s important yet.

CB: Yeah, usually things start trending and heading in that direction.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So I started out my life, my personal chart, in a 15-year Scorpio period and then I went into a 12-year Sagittarius period, and right very closely after that 12-year Sagittarius period began is when I started studying astrology. And then when I hit the next subperiod peak within that – a 12-month Pisces period – is when I started learning Hellenistic astrology and went to Project Hindsight and I learned this technique. So I always like to quip that like, you know when you found a powerful technique when the technique itself tells you that you found it because that’s what literally happened in my chart —

LS: Right.

CB: — I was hitting the – it was actually one of the highest peak periods of my entire life because it was peaking on like, level one and level two, hitting 7th from Fortune and 10th from Fortune when I discovered zodiacal releasing the technique for peak periods.

LS: It’s all very meta.

CB: Yeah. Very meta.

LS: Yeah.

CB: It’s dolls and dolls and dolls.

LS: Exactly.

CB: Right. It’s Russian dolls all the way down.

LS: Yes.

CB: So, yeah, I hit that. And then I hit another peak period later on in my career when I first spoke at UAC and when I launched the Denver Astrology Group and did a bunch of stuff. And then my peak period from when I first learned zodiacal releasing, the 12-month Pisces period on level two, repeated itself when I finished writing my book and published it in 2017.

LS: M’hmm.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Nice.

CB: So I guess that the general point then is just paying attention to not just that it doesn’t always – that it starts trending in that direction, but it may not always be clear where it’s going or that that thing is important. Like, I wouldn’t have necessarily for sure – no, I definitely wouldn’t have known that because I started studying astrology and bought like, a book – I bought The Astrologer’s Handbook and I bought an ephemeris and started looking at charts on Astro.com – I would not have known at that point when I was… whatever I was, like, 15, 16, that I would later become later in that same, within a decade, would become an astrologer or that would become my career.

LS: Yeah. And that’s what I find most fascinating about watching this technique is it’s not just – I mean, it is a good predictive tool, but it’s not only that. I think its value is actually even more in like, watching the entire pattern unfold and watching how one thing leads to the next. And that is – I don’t know. There’s something sort of like, awe-inspiring to me about that where you can just like, watch – I’ve always been kind of fascinated by watching, you know, why different people have the different lives that they do. And so you can actually like, watch this entire progression unfold and see, “Oh, look. I didn’t know that was gonna be so important, but it was.” And you can see that it should have been. You know?

CB: Right. That it should have been —

LS: Yeah. That it should have been important, and it was important, but you didn’t know quite how important it was until later.

CB: Okay, yeah. That’s a really common thing with zodiacal releasing —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — that the technique bizarrely shows important periods of your life beginning even if you yourself at that time do not know that they’re important and may not know for decades until much later on that that was a crucial turning point in your life.

LS: Right. Or that that was like, the incipient beginning of something. Yeah.

CB: And it’s like that’s kind of true of astrology in general, like somebody might say, but it’s not like – this technique does it in a bizarrely, like, because the periods – it’s so stark and cut and dry when one period starts and when one period ends and when one period is at peak period versus when it’s not, it’s much more stark in the way that it presents things than usual, and that’s the thing that’s a little bit startling about the technique that we’re not used to dealing with as astrologers. Because things like transits, there’s always this like, ambiguity over like, when does the transit begin or you know, is it around the exactitude or is it when it goes within a degree or, you know, what is the orb that we’re using and stuff like that. There’s like, this squishiness to it, but with zodiacal releasing, it’s a little bit more sort of hard.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. All right. I was just looking to see if I have my chart, but I don’t have it queued up here, so I will maybe just come back to that later on.

LS: Sure.

CB: All right. Where are we at?

LS: Let’s see. Angular triads perhaps next?

CB: So that’s the only examples you wanted to do for initial just peak periods?

LS: Yeah. Just peak period, yeah.

CB: Okay, I think that’s —

LS: Yeah, I mean, that one was striking to me both because it was like, an example of like, how a short peak period can still be super important. And so people should not worry if like, they’ve been left out, if they only have like, an eight-year peak period or something.

CB: Because —

LS: Because the most —

CB: Because they ended up starting the thing that would later carry forward.

LS: Yes.

CB: I mean, that’s, because that’s the point of the next section —

LS: Yes.

CB: — the angular triad section.

LS: It is. It is, it is. But that like, the most important thing can still happen during that time even if you don’t have 30 years for that. Like, that there will still be important things to come from that. And the other piece was just like, that this wasn’t as striking as maybe like, the Justin Bieber one, although maybe it’s around a similar age, but you could see that, you know, with the first period being only 20 years and then moving —

CB: Oh, because they were young when it happened?

LS: Yeah, so moving into the peak period, you know, at about 20 years of age – it was still that important. And then they became the director like, after, you know, like, 28.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So it was – for them their peak period was between the ages of 20 and 28?

LS: M’hmm.

CB: Okay.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Got it. All right. That sounds good. So that’s peak periods. We’re gonna now modify the peak periods technique as we transition into talking about angular triads. Are there any other things or reflections that we need to have about peak periods before we move on? I feel like – because at this point we have to start, we have to like, talk some people off of a ledge if their peak period isn’t coming up anytime soon —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — or it’s already passed, but we’re gonna introduce some modifications to explain that there’s more to this technique than just peak periods, and I don’t —

LS: Yeah.

CB: It’s like, we have to start at that point, and that’s the foundation of the technique. It’s not the only thing. It’s not necessarily even the most important thing in some instances, for some lives, but it is the sort of centerpiece or the structure that we then put a bunch of other stuff on top of.

LS: Yes.

CB: But we’ll introduce that at this point.

LS: Yeah. No, I think we’ve digressed fully.

CB: Okay. Very good. That is the subtitle of this podcast —

LS: Yes.

CB: — I think, at this point. All right. Angular triads.

LS: Yes.

CB: So we’re gonna modify the technique a little bit. We’ve talked about the four angles from the Lot of Fortune and how those are peak periods, which are periods of heightened importance and activity, and how a person hitting a peak period will sometimes hit like, a career peak or will go into a much more active and important period in terms of their career if you’re releasing from the Lot of Spirit. That’s also true, and actually this is the – that’s the side note at this point is that what I discovered when I started releasing from Eros is that it seemed to be working also when you release some Eros and hit a peak period from the Lot of Fortune that a person was often hitting a more active and important period in terms of relationships.

LS: Right.

CB: And that’s something you’ve seen consistently as well.

LS: Yeah, definitely. Yeah. It pretty much works exactly the same, so.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Okay. So with angular triads, the concept is that you have the four angles from Fortune. And let’s say a person goes into an eight-year Libra period, for example, which is a peak period, let’s say, for that person, which is the sign of the Lot of Fortune itself. That period, the peak periods do not happen in isolation, but instead the peak periods are actually the middle of a sequence of three signs. And there’s a period that goes into or leads into the peak period, which is a build-up phase, and that is the sign that comes just before the peak period. So the idea here is that there’s a sign that comes before the peak period, and that’s gonna build up to and prepare the person for and also lead into the peak period. Then there’s the peak period itself, the activation of that sign, which is a period of heightened importance and activity, which is often the most active period in the sequence, and that’s the middle of the phase. But then there’s also a sign that comes after the peak period, and in that usually the key word is that the person will carry forward but also eventually wrap up and bring to completion the themes that were initiated during the previous two signs. And that third sign represents the end of the sequence.

LS: Yeah. And so you can always kind of see like, what’s leading into the main action, what is kind of some of the main action itself, and then what is the follow through from that action.

CB: Right. So and that sequence of three signs that are grouped around the angles from Fortune are what we call an angular triad, and this term is a term that Schmidt introduced in order to, again, just give a label to something that was being implicitly used by the ancient astrologers where they would group the houses relative to the four angles, and the four angles were always seen as the middle part, the most important part, but just the middle part of a sequence of three houses that starts with the sign before the angle – the cadent house, so to speak – the sign of the angle itself, and the sign that follows after the angle, which is the succedent house, so to speak. And that was a common concept or interpretive principle that you see used all over the place in ancient astrology and Hellenistic astrology, and it’s part of the original rationale underlying the houses and the very concepts of angular, cadent, and the succedent. But it can also be applied to, as we’re doing here, the concept of derivative houses from the Lot of Fortune, because, again, we’re just setting up whole sign houses from the sign of the Lot of Fortune. We’re focusing on the angles from Fortune, but we’re now realizing that the angles from Fortune are not operating in isolation but instead they’re the middle of a sequence of three signs.

LS: And that kind of gives more context to what I was saying before about how that’s one of the things I find the most value in is watching this entire sequence unfold and watching this entire trajectory of people’s lives unfold, because it’s not just important what happens during the peak period itself, it’s what are these small clues and what are like, the first inklings of things during the preparatory period that lead into the main action? And what are, you know, then what are the main action pieces themselves? And then finally, what do people do with that afterwards?

CB: Right. Yeah. So and because zodiacal releasing is always moving in zodiacal order, which is counterclockwise, it means that you’re always going to – typically, I mean, if a person’s moving around the signs, it’s typically gonna come to the cadent house or the house – the Fortune house that’s just before an angle from Fortune first, and that’s the beginning of the sequence, and then things start building up and things start anew. Then it hits the middle of the sequence, and then it hits the end of the sequence. So this usually works out in a very literal way in people’s lives where new stuff starts happening and they begin new ventures during the first part of the sequence, those ventures reach a high point of activity, and there’s a lot of initiation of major ventures during the peak period, and then things are carried forward into the final phase of the sequence, and then usually by the end of it they wrap it up and bring it to completion in preparation for starting a new sequence of three signs.

LS: Yeah. And I think that’s one of the reasons why it can be helpful to go through this with another person, you know, with an astrologer, because they can sometimes – you can sometimes in a consultation start pulling out clues. I think that’s one of the things I like to do with zodiacal releasing is not just like, the objective things that the person already realizes, but like, looking, say, like a preparatory period at the period before the peak period and saying, “What started happening here? And what started happening here?” And like, asking questions, and you can start building clues towards something in the future even if you don’t know yet what that’s gonna be fully.

CB: Yeah. And that process is necessary because this is one of the things people don’t sometimes get fully or don’t incorporate fully is just understanding that they – you can’t just isolate peak periods and focus entirely on peak periods. You have to understand that the peak period is just part of the sequence, and you need to talk through and work through the person’s entire chronology to understand where they’re at within the broader context of their entire life at this point and their past trajectory and their future trajectory. And when you start doing that, it starts creating a much richer narrative about the entire narrative of the person’s life rather than just focusing on singular events or other things like that.

LS: Definitely. And that’s really fun to do, I feel like, especially when people are older but really at any age, you can start building an entire story of like, how things are playing out. And I think oftentimes, I mean, even if clients haven’t had like, what you would consider like, the biggest career successes or something like that, there’s still something that people often find valuable in being able to see that narrative arc of their entire lives.

CB: Yeah. And that has become, I think for us, the way that we use this technique, and it’s become part of – like, zodiacal releasing became the main technique that I used because it had the ability to do that and to describe the entire narrative arc of a person’s life and by talking through them with their chronology and showing it how it stacks up against this technique and being able to give them a more objective understanding of their life narrative and everything that’s happened up to this point, as well as in some instances where things are still headed. And that’s useful on just a number of different levels for people on a practical level, on a philosophical level. Yeah, there’s something useful about that.

LS: Definitely.

CB: All right. So here’s an example. So one of my favorite examples is Demetra’s chart of angular triads. So this is Demetra George, a famous astrologer. I first learned Hellenistic astrology from her. Just interviewed her last month for her new book, Ancient Astrology in Theory and Practice: Volume I, which Leisa spent a little time proofreading recently.

LS: A little bit. Yeah.

CB: A little time —

LS: A few months or so.

CB: Using that Virgo Moon.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Putting it to good use.

LS: Indeed.

CB: All right. So, Demetra has the Lot of Fortune in Cancer, so that means the cardinal signs are gonna be the peak periods for her. So that’s Cancer, Libra, Capricorn, and Aries. Her Lot of Spirit is in Libra, so she starts out in an eight-year Libra period. Then it moves to 15 years in Scorpio, and then it moves to a 12-year Sagittarius period which she started in 1969. So Demetra’s story is really interesting because she went to college and originally was studying to be like, a math teacher and in another life would have been like, a primary school, high school like, math teacher or something like that. And she was about to get her degree or did get a degree for that to go into teaching, but then it’s like the late 1960s, and she ends up like, leaving school or dropping out and runs off and joins a commune while she’s in her – what must have been like, her early 20s.

So around this time, she starts this new life, basically, and runs off and joins a commune. She starts this new 12-year Sagittarius period, and this is important because Sagittarius is the sign that comes before Capricorn, and Capricorn, as we established earlier, would be her peak period because it’s the 7th sign from Fortune, so it’s angular from the Lot of Fortune. So what that means then is the Sagittarius period is the beginning of a new angular triad because it’s the beginning of a new sequence of three signs, which are Sagittarius, which is the beginning for 12 years, Capricorn, which is the middle point and the peak period for 27 years, and then Aquarius, which is the third and final phase, which is the carry forward and bring to completion phase for 30 years.

So that’s like, a huge obviously like, span of time that ends up encompassing most of her adult life. But what’s interesting is the change starts happening pretty early on in Sagittarius because she starts Sagittarius in 1969. And then on the commune, she discovers in the library that they had there that they had some books on astrology, and she begins studying astrology initially just as like, a hobby. But then relatively early in the Sagittarius period, she gets more interested in it and more invested in it. She ends up going at one point and attending her first astrology conference as like, a 20-something astrologer. Ends up attending an AFA conference, and at this conference a woman comes up to her, and it’s like, the first astrologer she talks to at this conference, and it’s this – they strike up a brief conversation, and this woman says, “I just published this book; I think you should have it,” and hands it to Demetra. And it’s the first asteroid ephemeris where this woman is Eleanor Bach, and she just published the first asteroid ephemeris, and she gives it to Demetra who’s just attended her first astrology conference as a young astrologer. So this is all happening during the 12-year preparatory period, which is the first phase of the angular triad, and so what I’m describing here is how it happens sometimes where the events and circumstances that will become important and will end up coming to characterize the entirety of the rest of the angular triad often start to develop and start to introduce themselves in the person’s chronology during the first opening phase of the angular triad.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So there’s this theme of beginning new things.

LS: Right. And it often does involve things like that as well where things you’re – it’s like, you start doing little things yourself, but then sometimes happenstance will kind of run into you in doing so. I think that lots of us can say, for instance, that we didn’t, you know, have that experience at our first astrology conference where someone hands us something, you know, new and then like – well, not all of us.

CB: Right.

LS: You know. And then we become like, you know, world famous for that thing – like, that doesn’t happen to every single person who goes to their first astrology conference, so there needs to be some other factor that intervenes there with the volition to like, go to the astrology conference.

CB: Right. So, just the external circumstances?

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. So, but also just the humble beginnings.

LS: Yeah, definitely.

CB: Like, that’s a major theme that sometimes comes up in zodiacal releasing is – and that’s one of the things that’s hard for people when they’re learning it, which is that if you don’t have full distance, you may not understand it yet if it’s just something that’s beginning right now and there’s not a lot you can do about that because you just don’t have enough perspective on it yet —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — to fully see why what you’re doing right now is significant. Like, Demetra couldn’t have known that she was gonna become a world famous astrologer when she picked up some random astrology book on the commune library back then. There was a sense that she was beginning a new life, and she obviously left her old trajectory of becoming a math teacher and was doing something radically different, and that’s also part of the theme sometimes or oftentimes when a person just starts a new angular triad is starting a new phase in your life and starting to head in a new direction. But oftentimes the things that start happening can be slow or can be subtle.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So, she takes that book home from the conference and begins studying it and spends like, a decade, spends years studying the asteroids and is one of the earliest astrologers that starts consistently putting them in charts and researching them and then developing a methodology for interpreting them. By the very end of this Sagittarius period – well, no, what happens is that she finally wraps up the Sagittarius period, and then she moves in 1981 into a new 27-year Capricorn period. And this is 7th from Fortune, so this is the beginning of her 27-year peak period. And in researching this and interviewing her, I got it down to – and you can go back and listen to one of my past episodes where this one I’m explaining right now in terms of her chronology, if you go back and listen to that biographical episode I did with Demetra, is much more striking if you hear her actually describe the chronology of her life if you’re comparing the zodiacal releasing to it just because the level of detail that she goes into.

Anyway, 1981 – she goes into the 27-year peak period, and right around that time very close to when it begins, she is encouraged by a friend to write a book on the asteroids and starts working on a book that would later become her first book, Asteroid Goddesses. Eventually, in the mid-1980s, like 1984, 1985, she does publish Asteroid Goddesses. It comes out and ends up sort of establishing her career and ends up being successful in establishing her career as an astrologer and establishing one of the primary things that she’s known for, and one of her major contributions to the field is her work on asteroids and her promotion of that to the extent that it became like, a major technique and a relatively common methodology that was used in modern, contemporary late 20th and early 21st century astrology.

So, she does that. Also in the late 1980s, she publishes Astrology for Herself, which was her second book which was a workbook for modern astrology which became very popular and is also still a pretty good introduction to astrology at this point in time. Then her career by the time of the 90s, she’s really getting into this peak period, really takes off. She’s just doing tons of consultations. She’s traveling around the world lecturing. She is leading tours to like, Greece and other sacred sites around the world and generally just she characterizes this as being the most active period of her career certainly in terms of the number of clients she was seeing, in terms of lectures and notoriety and everything else, right?

LS: Right. Yeah.

CB: All right. But at some point during the course of this period, through a series of events that I’ve talked about with her, like, for example, last month when I interviewed her about her new book, she ended up through this weird series of events getting involved in studying ancient astrology, ended up studying Hellenistic astrology with Schmidt and Alan White, went to Project Hindsight, ends up developing a course and teaching that course at Kepler, goes through a bit of a crisis at one point where she like, stops practicing astrology for a while while she’s like, re-putting together her understanding of astrology with, in light of new things like whole sign houses and traditional rulerships and sect, which is just radically different from modern astrology. Learns ancient Greek, she translates some texts. It’s basically going through this whole period and makes major contributions to the study of ancient astrology. But also, towards the end of that starts to really reconcile her approach to ancient and modern astrology and figures out how to synthesize them.

And so what happens is that she eventually wraps up that 27-year peak period in 2007. The Capricorn period comes to an end, and she moves into Aquarius. So Aquarius is the last sign in the angular triad. It’s the sign that follows after the peak period. And the last sign, usually there’s a theme of carrying forward and bringing to completion that which was initiated during the previous two signs. So one of the first things that she does here is – I believe it was in 2008 or 2009 she publishes Astrology and the Authentic Self. Right?

LS: Right. Yeah, I think that was around then.

CB: Okay. So shortly after this Aquarius period begins, she publishes Astrology and the Authentic Self, and this book was one of the first in modern times real attempts to synthesize ancient Hellenistic astrology with modern Western astrology, and she kind of shows off what her current synthesis is of those two approaches. So in that way, you can see in a very literal way how that last sign she’s literally carrying forward and bringing to completion those two different threads in her life that had dominated the previous two periods, which is her work in modern astrology and her work in ancient astrology.

LS: Right.

CB: And then of course more recently now in January of 2019 also still in this 30-year carry forward and bring to completion period she just published volume one of her book on ancient astrology, which is her publishing basically all of the work she’s done over the past decade or two on just recovering and reconstructing ancient astrology and teaching it to students.

LS: Right. Yeah. And I think this is a really great example for – again, I think, you know, people often get a little worried about their peak period ending and thinking they’re not gonna do anything important anymore. And this is a great example to show that that’s not in fact necessarily the case, and while you can be prominent during your peak period or something that you’re doing career-wise or life direction-wise can be prominent during the peak period itself – as with her asteroid work, for example – and, you know, was, you can still be doing very important things during the succedent or the follow through period with whatever you did during the peak period. And, you know, obviously, people were like, really excited about her new book being published, and so it’s still important. It’s not that everything like, begins and ends during the peak period.

CB: Yeah, definitely there is carry through. And sometimes you can do some of your most important work in the succedent, in the follow through, the final period, especially if other factors – because there’s also other factors, like the ruler of Spirit and if the ruler of Spirit is in the final sign that then sometimes your life work doesn’t happen until the final period and other considerations like that.

LS: Right.

CB: So sometimes the peak period is active and important and that’s the period where you initiate that which will carry forward into the following period, but there’s still something about the following period where you’re still doing important and crucial work.

LS: Definitely. Yeah. And I mean, especially during some of those peak periods where like, the most vital thing happens during like, the last subperiod or something like that, which is not uncommon.

CB: At the very end of the peak period?

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah. Exactly.

CB: Well, yeah. No, exactly. And —

LS: It’s pretty common.

CB: Yeah. Well, I was looking at – so it’s like, my chart’s kind of like that. I finally found that, so it’s like, I have the Lot of Fortune in Gemini, so the angle from Fortune is Sagittarius, which begins in 1999, and that’s pretty much almost exactly when I started studying astrology. I hit a Pisces subperiod in 2005 for 12 months starting in April of 2005, and I moved to Project Hindsight in like, August of 2005 and learned zodiacal releasing a month or two later. So that 12-year Pisces period or 12-month Pisces period is when I learned zodiacal releasing. Then there’s another peak period where I spoke at UAC for the first time, I became the research director of the NCGR, became the head of – started the Denver Astrology Group, and a bunch of important stuff happened in 2008, 2009. But then my peak period technically – quote-unquote “peak period” – ended in 2011 when I wrapped up Sagittarius and moved into Capricorn for 27 years. But then what I’ve been doing is just carrying forward a lot of the work that I initiated at that time —

LS: Right.

CB: — and arguably it’s like, my book came out in this, towards the end of this 12-month Pisces period, which was between February of 2016 and February of 2017, and my book came out February 10th of 2017. So, yeah, it’s like, it’s tricky because we want to, on the one hand, emphasize the importance of peak periods and their pivotal and active quality for the career, and sometimes that can be when arguably some of the most important work takes place. But sometimes also it’s just that’s when you initiate some of the most important work and begin doing the most important work that later won’t be fully brought to completion until the end of the angular triad.

LS: Definitely. Yeah. I like that distinction, because it is often true that people initiate the most important thing during their peak period.

CB: Yeah. And that was actually something that was true in Schmidt’s chart, because with him – he passed away just a few months ago, and now knowing his chronology I’ve been trying to understand then in retrospect what his final life work was and looking at the astrology now understanding the end of his story. And he was in a peak period in the 1980s going into the early 1990s when he started studying astrology and when he started investigating ancient astrology, partially when he was living with Michael Erlewine, and Erlewine was working on like, a digital encyclopedia and asked Schmidt to use some of his language skills to start investigating it, while at the same time Schmidt’s wife had started studying astrology and was encouraging him to study it. And so he ended up having a major peak period and a loosing of the bond towards the very end of that, and I think that’s when he really started getting into astrology, which then would carry through into the ’90s when he went into the succedent period but also started Project Hindsight.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah. I noticed also with the example that I brought up earlier that I asked a few more questions, and I could actually see the angular triad playing out even though the person was still quite young.

And so what happened during the preparatory period is they went to a high school that had like, a community service piece that you could opt into, and so they did. And then they went to a college where social justice was like, an important component, and so that kind of like, started pushing them on a certain road, but still more generally. And then I asked what happened during the last peak period on level two, what happened at that point before they hit the level one peak period, and it turns out they took like, a job during college with a homeless organization, and that wasn’t what they eventually did, but in the process of having that job just for like, the summer or something, they found out how many people were homeless because of domestic violence. And so during the peak period, they then got in, they started working in a domestic violence shelter and then eventually was hired for – eventually was hired by an organization that is about self defense and preventing violence. And then by the end of that period is when the former director left. And then finally in the follow through period in the beginning was when they were hired as director.

CB: Okay.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Got it. Yeah. So basically it just becomes part of a sequence. I mean, even in the chart I was using earlier with Robert Downey Jr. where I talked about and put a lot of emphasis on how he began that 20-year peak period in 2008 and that’s when he got the Iron Man role and then his career has just, you know, taken off, and he became at one point there, he was the highest paid actor in Hollywood a few years into that peak period. But, you know, we can see that the sign before that was the 19-year Leo period, and he had this whole, you know, two-decade long career as an actor before he got to that point, and all of that then, within the context of this, was preparatory and was a build up for that peak period.

So, yeah. Look at the peak periods from the perspective of not in isolation, but look at the build-up phase and look at the follow through and carry to completion phase as well.

LS: Definitely.

CB: And that’s true not just in the general periods which we’re focusing on here, but it’s also true in the subperiods.

LS: Yep.

CB: So a person can have like, a 20-month peak period, but there can be a sign just before that that builds up to it that’s like, a few months long like, I don’t know, 19 months long, then 20-month peak period. Then there can be an eight-month or whatever cooldown phase where it carries forward and brings to completion, and it just happens in a much shorter duration of months rather than years.

LS: And those are, I think, often the instances where it’s particularly important to ask lots of questions, because you can start honing in on like, really small clues.

CB: Yeah. And those are the ones where it’s, that’s for most people when you’re studying your own chronology what you have to study because it’s that shorter term stuff that you actually can study —

LS: Right.

CB: — because you can remember like, what the last year was like or the last few years, whereas it’s harder to contextualize like, entire decades of your life.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. All right. So that’s the concept of angular triads more or less. And, again, this is another thing where I would go into a million examples, but for the sake of this, I think we’re good.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Okay. Let’s take another break.

LS: Okay.

CB: Okay. All right. Let’s transition into talking about other ways to interpret the quality of an activated sign. So we focused a lot on peak periods at this point, which are periods of heightened importance and activity, and we’ve also talked about the angular triads that lead into or carry forward and bring to completion a peak period. But those are not necessarily used to determine whether a period is experienced as subjectively positive or negative, and for that instead there are other things that you have to look at.

So in order to determine the quality of a period – so let’s say there’s a specific sign of the zodiac that’s activated. There’s three primary things that you look at in order to determine how that period is gonna be experienced by a person, especially subjectively. And those three things are one, any planets that are located in the sign that has become activated. So these are natal planets that are in that sign, especially the benefics and the malefics, since the benefics and malefics tend to pertain to or tend to explain experiences that are experienced as subjectively more positive or more negative typically, in that tendency. So thing number one, planets placed in the sign that’s activated. Consideration number two is planets that are activating – that are aspecting the sign that has become activated, especially by a hard aspect which is a square or an opposition. And then the third thing is the condition of the ruler of that sign. So if you’re going through like, an eight-year Libra period, then you would look at the condition of Venus in the chart. If you’re going through a 27-year Capricorn period, you would look at the condition of Saturn in the chart and so on and so forth.

So in my own work, I’ve tended to focus on the first two considerations, and I’ve seen those considerations as being more important and more descriptive in terms of how the person experiences those periods, and I have not put as much emphasis on the condition of the ruler of the sign. So in Valens’s treatment, he initially seems to focus and talk more about the ruler of the sign when describing zodiacal releasing periods and how to interpret them, but then when he gets to his two example charts, he really seems to focus on aspects to the sign or planets placed in the sign especially by hard aspect. And so I’ve tended towards using that more or at least in my initial studies I tended towards that more, and in practice that tended to show up more, tended to be more reliable in terms of my experience of trying to figure out how to interpret periods or seeing how clients would describe them in their subjective experience.

LS: Definitely. Yeah, and I’ve definitely observed the same.

CB: Okay. So it’s like, that being said – so in our treatment here we’re gonna focus primarily on that approach, which is just planets in the sign and planets aspecting the sign by a square or opposition, especially the benefics or malefics. There are other approaches where other people I know emphasize the ruler of the sign more, and I do know there are certain instances where I’ve seen the ruler of the sign be important, and that’s an area of research that’s worth pursuing, because I’m sure there’s still a lot there that’s worth uncovering and worth pursuing. But for me, I’ve just tended to focus on the thing that was most reliable and really developing that as far as I can possibly go with it. And I know there’s other parts of this technique that still need to be explored with more depth.

LS: But that said, I do think what you mentioned so far, the planets – especially the benefics and malefics – in hard aspect to those periods really stick out. You know, the quality really is noticeable.

CB: Yeah. I mean, to me, after just doing this over and over again with client charts as well as personal charts, that was the thing that stood out the most was the angular signs relative to the benefics and malefics really did qualify or did describe the quality of the periods very well. And hearing that described in very personal terms by clients over and over again just reinforced that for me over the course of a decade.

LS: Definitely.

CB: All right. So we’re gonna focus especially on the benefics and malefics here, which are of course, Venus and Jupiter are the two benefics, and Mars and Saturn are the two malefics. And one of the things that you have to do right at the start of this, just like we did in our episode on sect last month, is you need to – or our episode on electional —

LS: Electional.

CB: — astrology —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — is you need to incorporate sect here, because sect is a very crucial factor that helps you to identify the most, the extremes, as well as the shades of grey in between. And how that works out in practical purposes is sect helps you to identify the most functionally positive planet in the chart as well as the most functionally negative or difficult or challenging planet in the chart.

So the quick and easy rule for this is basically, if you have a day chart, then the most positive planet in your chart is gonna be Jupiter, and the most negative or challenging planet is gonna be Mars. Whereas if you have a night chart, the most positive planet is gonna be Venus, and the most challenging planet is going to be Saturn. So you have a day chart basically if the Sun is anywhere in the top half of your chart above the exact degrees of the Ascendant/Descendant axis, and you have a night chart if the Sun is anywhere below the horizon or below the exact degrees of the Ascendant/Descendant axis. Right?

LS: Yeah. Yeah, so what you’re looking at is basically when these respective planets get activated. And so the best, the sort of most positively experienced periods are going to be when Jupiter is in any hard aspect to that period in a day chart or Venus in a night chart. And conversely, the most challenging periods are gonna be when Mars is any hard aspect to those periods in a day chart or Saturn in a night chart.

CB: Right. So the first thing you should do is establish if you have a day chart or a night chart, and then figure out what signs are angular relative to the most positive planet, which is Jupiter in a day chart or Venus in a night chart, and then which signs are angular to the most negative planet in your chart, which is Saturn in a night chart or Mars in a day chart, because those four signs that are dictated by each benefic and each malefic are going to be the ones that you experience as the most subjectively positive and the signs that you’re gonna tend to experience as the most subjectively negative or challenging.

CB: So, here’s a diagram that shows that. Let’s just imagine we have a chart that has – it’s a night chart, and it has like, Jupiter in Gemini and Mercury in Leo and the Sun in Virgo, Venus in Libra, Mars in Scorpio, Moon in Sagittarius, and Saturn in Pisces. So because the Sun is in the bottom half of the chart, we know it’s a night chart, so we’re gonna focus on first identifying Venus, and Venus is in Libra. So that means Venus is in a cardinal sign, so the signs that are angular from Venus are gonna be the other cardinal signs, Libra, Capricorn, Aries, and Cancer. And because those are the four signs that are angular from Venus in a night chart, those are gonna be the foremost positive signs anytime those signs are activated in zodiacal releasing for this person.

LS: Right.

CB: Whereas, conversely, since they have a night chart and Saturn is located in Pisces, that means the four mutable signs that are angular from Saturn are gonna be experienced as the most negative or challenging signs for this person, and that’s gonna be Pisces, the sign that Saturn is in, as well as Gemini and Sagittarius, the two signs square to Saturn, and then Virgo, which is the sign opposite to Saturn.

LS: And that is true for the entire quadruplicity, although you will also additionally notice that when it comes to that sign itself where either the malefic contrary to sect or the benefic of the sect is actually placed in that sign, it will be particularly pronounced, either more positively or more challenging.

CB: Yeah, and I think in the NatalTransits.com website that’s what it highlights is when it comes to the sign that contains the most negative planet or the most positive planet based on sect and it indicates that in that read-out. At some point in some of these other programs, I’d like to include interpretive information like that as well, but we just haven’t quite gotten there at this point.

LS: Right. But you can kind of rely basically on the ideas that all of them will have that same quality, but one will be even more pronounced.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So the sign that actually contains the benefic and malefic will be more pronounced.

LS: Right.

CB: Yeah. And there’s a whole breakdown in terms of the signs that it has the most power over versus the signs that it has the least power over in that quadruplicity. That’s also true for peak periods, and we glossed over that point —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — because this is already three hours long —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — and we don’t need to get into all the nuances and details, which is that there’s some peak periods that are more powerful or more important than others. So that’s stuff I go into in the course, and I have examples —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — and so on and so forth. The purpose of this, let’s just say, the four signs that are angular from the most positive and negative planet are the ones that are gonna be experienced as the most subjectively positive and negative.

All right. So that’s gonna dictate the extremes of positive and negative. And so… let’s see. The other benefic and malefic, because of course that just identifies two planets and their quadruplicities, the other benefic and malefic are gonna be experienced as more moderate, so they’re still gonna tend towards being more benefic and indicating either more positive events or more malefic and negative events. But they’re gonna be less extreme in their inclinations, so that it’s like, yeah, they’re kind of benefic or kind of malefic, but it’s not anything necessarily to write home about, and they’re not gonna tend to be as extreme as the other two.

LS: Definitely. They just don’t jump out as much, either to you or to the client. Although if you ask and, you know, kind of probe further, there is still a moderate quality one way or the other.

CB: Yeah. Like if the angles from the moderate benefic are activated, they’ll be like, “Yeah, that was a somewhat positive time, but it wasn’t like, the most positive time in my life or my career.” Or if the malefic that’s more moderate is activated, which is Saturn in a day chart or Mars in a night chart, then they’ll say, “Yeah, there was some challenges that came up during that time, but I eventually got over it, and it wasn’t a big deal.” And it’s like the cliche “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” type scenario, whereas the most negative planet tends to be some of the most challenging and sometimes like, deal breaker or just like, running into a wall that you can’t get around.

LS: Right. People are used to the moderate challenges. They’re kind of like, “That’s part of life.” so that it doesn’t stick out as much. Though the bigger ones, they’re sometimes like, “What the hell is this?”

CB: Yeah. Well, it’s the – it’s sometimes just is that of those things that are negotiable and are the cliche “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” things is the moderate malefic oftentimes – what I call surmountable difficulties. That’s my main keyword that I use in zodiacal releasing for the moderate malefic versus the most negative malefic is just sometimes you’re going down a path and you run into something that you can’t negotiate with or you can’t get around. You just sort of have to take a loss and move on or go a different direction or what have you.

LS: Yeah. Definitely.

CB: And no amount of like, applying yourself is necessarily gonna do it.

Okay, so angles from the benefics and malefics. So at this point, we want to apply this – one of the things that you can do is apply this idea to the concept of the angular triads. So is it that stage or should we talk actually about first just applying this first?

LS: Maybe —

CB: Do you have any examples of that?

LS: Just the angular triad you mean or…?

CB: No, just a person hitting like —

LS: Just the periods?

CB: — positive or negative periods. Like, one of the ones that I have is Justin Bieber’s chart again, because he had interesting subperiods for that. Let me see if I have…

LS: It’s not just because of your eternal love.

CB: I mean, I know his periods well because of my eternal love, but that’s not —

LS: Right.

CB: — either here nor there.

LS: Yeah, go ahead and find a good one. I have a really terrible example like, in terms of negatives, so it’d be good to start with a good one.

CB: Okay. This shows the periods; it doesn’t have it marked correctly. I don’t think I have a slide that shows it marked correctly. But what it is is so I’ve already talked about how he starts out his life in a 25-year Cancer period, and that’s actually a peak period. So in the first 25 years of his life, he’s discovered and hits what is probably the high point of his career. So in the subperiods though, it starts off in Cancer for 25 months when he’s born and just keeps working its way around the zodiac from Cancer to Leo to Virgo to Libra to Scorpio to Sagittarius to Capricorn to Aquarius, and then he hits Pisces for 12 months. He hits this 12-month Pisces period, and what’s interesting is that in one of the little biographies that he put out, he talks about – so he hits this sign for one, and Pisces itself is the sign that contains his Sun, but it’s also the sign that contains his Venus and his Saturn, and this is all in the fifth house in a night chart. So because the Sun is in the bottom half of the chart, we know it’s a night chart. So it’s unique because it means that Venus is the most positive planet in his chart, and Saturn is the most negative planet, and what’s curious about that is that they are both in the same sign. So, that’s one of the questions that you have to ask yourself when you’re looking at the benefics and the malefics right from the start and what their quadruplicities are, which is – is the most positive planet and the most negative planet in different signs? Are they in the same sign, or what’s the configuration? Because that’s gonna set up a different and unique sequence for each person.

LS: Right.

CB: So, his is one of the unique sequences where the most positive and most negative planets are in the same sign, which means that you’ll tend to have the most positive and most negative events either happening simultaneously or happening side by side in the same periods. And what happened with that is he like, auditioned, he went in for a local talent competition, and the way he describes it is he says that he like, sang his heart out and he thought he really put everything he had into it, but he didn’t win the competition. He like, came in second or something like that, which to him he actually experienced subjectively as a major defeat or like, a major setback which was subjectively very negative to him. And that is in that 12-month Pisces subperiod – that’s the activation of that Saturn in a night chart. And him, since this is zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Spirit, feeling frustrated and feeling like he took a loss basically during that period. But then what happens is his mother took a video of that to like, send to family, and she posted on YouTube, and then she started posting other videos for him, of him, on YouTube of him singing, and within a few months, he started getting like, lots – like, thousands of followers. And then just a few months afterwards in that period, he started getting a huge following. And then in the very next period once it went into the 15-month Aries period, which is the sign of the Lot of Fortune, that ends up being when he gets discovered.

So I use that as an example because – you know, it’s not a clean example because it’s not just only the most positive planet or only the most negative planet, but it’s a good example of how when you have those two planets in the same sign or the same quadruplicity, the person will experience extremes of positive and negative.

LS: Definitely. And it’s interesting to see these different mixes or different configurations of the benefics and malefics in particular with regard to these periods because everyone has a different mix. And so some people do have them either like, in the same sign here is kind of like, the most extreme, but in the same quadruplicity, say. So there’s, like, say, like, a benefic and a malefic activated at the same time. Some of them have only one benefic activated at one time or one malefic and so forth. So they’re all different mixes of what you can experience during these periods depending on where the planets are in your chart.

CB: Right. Yeah, and there’s a bunch of different possible combinations in terms of that, in terms of the four – the two benefics and the two malefics and the different combinations you can have. We recommend focusing on the most extreme benefic and extreme malefic because those are gonna stand out the most in a person’s chronology. But ultimately, it is a combination of all of them, and there’s also other factors about planetary condition, like which one is earlier in zodiacal order, which one is overcoming the other, are there conditions of like, bonification and maltreatment or mitigating conditions that alter the condition of the benefic and malefic because that’s gonna alter how extreme it is in terms of being positive or negative. And there’s other things that go into that that are part of the basic sort of preliminary natal analysis of the chart that is all the background stuff that’s supposed to build up to this point, because this is one of the things about the time lord techniques that’s tricky, and this is why I teach them at the very end of my course. Like, zodiacal releasing is like, the final center – not centerpiece, but the final culmination of the Hellenistic course, because you’re supposed to take all of the basic concepts and building blocks that you learned in just building up the birth chart and understanding all the basic placements in it and what their potential is based on the condition of the planets in the chart, and then you apply zodiacal releasing and profections to see when those natal potentials will be unlocked and awakened and activated. But it’s like, it’s tricky because if you haven’t done that whole preliminary natal analysis to get there, you’re not gonna have a very clear idea of what exactly is being unlocked at that point.

LS: For sure. And sometimes I think that’s why people start playing with the technique without having necessarily all of those prerequisites and then start coming to like, conclusions that the technique isn’t necessarily trying to say, because you do need all of those building blocks to work together.

CB: Yeah, and this is where sometimes people run afoul of the technique or don’t understand it or apply it correctly or misunderstand it, because they didn’t do the full analysis to understand what the condition of a planet is and what it’s actually promising in the chart before they tried to determine, you know, when it will be activated.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So there’s different combinations of that. Do you have any examples that you wanted to mention here before we talk about placing them within the context of the angular triads?

LS: I do. But it’s a really depressing one, so.

CB: Okay. Well, it’s up to you.

LS: Yeah, I have an example. And mine unfortunately for people watching aren’t on the screen, so I’m just kind of like, trying to explain it basically, and hopefully —

CB: Is it one of the charts you sent me?

LS: It is. Yeah. It’s the Fortune example. So, let’s see. Fortune example was someone with Saturn in Aries. It’s not that one. So, Saturn in Aries in a night chart and Mars in Libra. And when they – and so this was releasing from the Lot of Fortune. And so, for the most part, that’s usually about health things, but as we mentioned, sometimes it can pertain to just the more general rubric of things that befall you kind of through no fault of your own. And so this one – so in a night chart, as we mentioned, Saturn is gonna be the most difficult planet, and so to have that activated as the level one kind of sets the backdrop for something more challenging.

CB: Okay. So I just want us to clarify the premise here. So one, we’re doing zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Fortune.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So we’re switching to talking about health matters.

LS: Sort of.

CB: And then – okay. And then we’re doing… This is a night chart.

LS: Yep.

CB: So that means Saturn is the most negative planet in the chart —

LS: Right.

CB: — and that’s the one that they’re gonna have the most problems with.

LS: Right.

CB: Okay.

LS: Yeah. And so this one was a Saturn level – or, sorry, an Aries level one, and so that gives the general backdrop of Saturn being activated in a night chart, which is the most challenging one. And then they moved on to eventually to Libra level two, which activates the other malefic, and while that’s the less problematic malefic in a night chart, it is both a malefic still even if more moderate and still angular from Saturn by quadruplicity. So, it’s kind of activating both malefics at once. And so during this period, this person had some false accusations being placed against them, which is why I was saying this was falling more under the general rubric of like, things that befall you through no fault of your own, and then eventually went to prison during the peak period, which this was leading up to in the next level two.

CB: Okay.

LS: And like I said, it’s a depressing example. But it is kind of like, a more extreme example of when you activate like, both the malefics at once. I think this person also had a health problem around the same time. Yeah, so.

CB: Okay. So they basically – it was in zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Fortune, and it came to the sign that contains the most difficult planet. And then on the subperiod, it came to the sign that contains the other malefic, and the person had a false accusation and was thrown in jail. But then eventually when the general period was finished and they – it was – it moved on to Taurus and was no longer activating the sign that contained the most difficult planet, the person was vindicated —

LS: Yes.

CB: — and released from jail, and then their, and everything became cleared up, basically.

LS: Yeah, basically, and continued on with their life after that.

CB: Okay.

LS: Yeah.

CB: That’s pretty good.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So and that’s pretty common. I mean, this is releasing from Fortune, so that it’s more things outside of the person’s control and in their circumstances, and often when you release from Fortune and it comes to the sign that contains the most difficult planet, sometimes that can be like, experienced as a health issue or a health crisis or something like that occasionally, but it can also sometimes be other types of circumstances that are outside of the person’s control.

LS: Right. I’ve seen it much more usually be about health things, but sometimes like, accidents or things like that.

CB: Right. Okay. That’s pretty good. I don’t think I have other charts lined up that I wanted to use for the purpose of this. It’s mainly just understanding, yeah, that the quality of the period is dictated by especially planets in the sign or planets aspecting the sign by hard aspect.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Okay.

LS: And you can see that play out in every single chart, basically. It’s just different configurations each time.

CB: Yeah, and that is what makes different charts really unique is just seeing the different combinations they have and how those do get activated by the zodiacal releasing and how the zodiacal releasing in that way really does activate the natal potential in this very dynamic way, but it’s by activating them for blocks of time.

LS: Yeah, definitely.

CB: Okay. So the other thing at this point that you wanna do is combine this with the concept of the angular triads because then it’s gonna tell you which parts of the angular triads that sequence of three signs basically that the person’s gonna experience as more subjectively positive or negative. So do they have, for example, benefics falling in the Fortune angles themselves so that they experience their peak periods as also being more subjectively positive? Or do they have the more challenging malefic planets falling in the signs angular from Fortune so that even though in those instances sometimes the person is at the height of their career or they’re at a period that is the most active and important or pivotal for their career, sometimes they’re not feeling subjectively happy or fulfilled during those times in their life. So this can sometimes be like the person who reaches the height of fame but somehow isn’t happy about their fame, or they don’t want it that way or don’t experience it as positive.

LS: Right, or as a side product of their fame have some sort of difficulty at the same time.

CB: Right. Like becoming notorious or something like that?

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. So other combinations that are possible – a person could have the most positive  planets in their chart in the last third of the angular triad, so in the signs that follow after the peak periods, so that it’s not the first two signs that they experience as the most subjectively positive, but it’s only once they get to the carry forward and bring to completion phase – that’s when they sort of experience their most subjectively positive part of their life, when they’re not like, in the most active time or they’re not in the build up phase, but it’s when they are sort of like, winding down or wrapping things up and bringing them to completion that they feel the most subjectively fulfilled.

LS: And I find this combination, excuse me, of the angular triads and the benefics and malefics particularly fascinating to watch, both because they’re so unique to each person and also because, as you explain, kind of like, how that particular unique triad works for that particular client or whoever’s chart you’re looking at, they often really resonate with that. So, basically saying, well, usually during the kind of lead up to the main action in your life with respect to this topic, it feels like this. And then during the main action, this is kind of how you normally experience it. And then finally in the last period, it’s like this. And no matter which combinations of the planets are happening during those three phases, people usually kind of have like, a little bit of an aha moment or like, thinking back about like, how their life has gone and be like, “Yeah, I do experience things that way.”

CB: Right. Yeah. I mean, you can set that up based on the theory of the technique to establish what the repeating sequence is, and it’s something both that will play out over the course of the long-term level one periods in terms of people having those broad experiences within those decade long spans of their life. But more commonly, it’s more easy to see it playing out over and over again on the subperiods where they enter into like, an eight-month subperiod, let’s say, that has the most difficult planet, and they experience like, a setback or an obstacle or a frustration in their career in the releasing from Spirit at that time, whereas they come to like, another sign just after that that contains the most positive planet, and they experience that as positive of like, getting a raise or of, you know, meeting an expectation in terms of their career and feeling some level of fulfillment or happiness surrounding that.

LS: Yeah, definitely. And while people often resonate when you explain their particular sequence, one of the things in particular that I like to talk about is when people have like, the malefic contrary to sect activated during their peak periods. Because not everyone does, you know, and you have it somewhere within those three phases. But when they do, you know, sometimes people get some sort of relief from understanding that both of those qualities are happening at once. So while they are having some sort of challenge happening, perhaps a big challenge, it’s also still a really important period for them. And, yeah, it’s interesting, especially if people kind of have lived a decent bit of their life already to be able to explain how that’s working for them.

CB: Yeah. And there’s – I mean, one of the things I wanna say here is there’s a ton of different manifestations of this ands ways that that can manifest, so you have to be careful, and I wanna be careful here not to give a delineation of a single one and say that that’s exactly how it’s gonna work out for every single one because of the potential for mitigations and different combinations; you can have a lot of different ways that this can work out.

LS: For sure.

CB: But definitely, you know, sometimes that can be if there’s like, malefics angular from Fortune, that can be a bit frustrating at that time and can coincide with like, a high point but also when there’s like, a setback like, you know, getting, being the frontrunner in something but then losing or something like that for example.

LS: Right. Or like people who become like, a head of a company but then like, have immediate challenges with the company going through bad times or something.

CB: Right.

LS: That would be a combination like that.

CB: Yeah, so that it’s clearly a very active time career-wise and very prominent time, but also that there’s major challenges and obstacles that are encountered at the same time. And sometimes that can be necessary and still ultimately be positive or good in somewhat ways, whereas in other times a person may not experience the quote-unquote like, “best” part of their career during those periods, but if the benefics are outside of that either just after or just before, then those are the times that they experience as being what they would consider to be the most subjectively positive.

LS: Right, so it’s different for everyone, and it’s interesting to track for each person.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So that distinction is super crucial, because people often misunderstand when I say “peak period” that the Fortune angles have to also be the most positive, and that is not always the case for people. They just tend to be the more active and the more important periods in a person’s life due to that dynamic quality of the Fortune angles, but the subjective experience of the quality of the period is more dictated by the planets in the signs or aspecting the sign by a hard aspect.

All right, so that’s pretty good. I don’t know if we – do you have any example of angular triads combined with the benefics and malefics?

LS: I’m trying to think. I don’t think I do offhand; I mean, I see it all the time, but I don’t think I have one written down here.

CB: Yeah. And we don’t necessarily have to. Again, that’s something I go into with great – a lot of examples in the 18-hour lecture, but here I primarily just wanna explain the concepts so that as a person is first learning this technique and looking at the periods, they have some starting point to be able to begin interpreting them and understanding just what sort of interpretive principles you might start applying to this technique.

LS: Yeah, for sure. I mean, I think we’ve basically gone over it. I mean, I think the periods are much clear when the – especially the benefic of the sect and malefic contrary to sect are like, separated, they’re not in the same quadruplicity.

CB: Right.

LS: Although when they do get combined, it’s still useful to explain to people that that does mean that they will experience kind of the highest highs and the low – you know, the most challenges in the same period, and that also definitely almost always resonates.

CB: Yeah, definitely.

LS: Yeah.

CB: And then just when you work through and talk through their chronology with them, you can show how that sequence tends to repeat itself, which is something that’s interesting and provides a different perspective on the life for the client or for the person whose chart you’re reading because they may, you know, they’ve had those life experiences and those repetitions, but they may not be used to actually realizing or seeing that that’s something that repeats or has repeated a few different times in their life until you put down a subjective set of periods and show how it’s repeated itself.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Yeah. All right. So I think that’s good in terms of that part in terms of understanding the quality of the periods. There is, again remember, a whole separate part of this about interpreting the ruler of the sign. But, again, we tend to focus more on planets in the sign or aspecting it. It’s worth exploring the condition of the ruler of the sign as another facet of this, but in terms of just describing the initial and the most reliable part of the technique, I think this approach is good to follow.

LS: Yeah. These are kind of like, the major building blocks you have at this point of how this technique works.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So let’s move on to one of the final phases of this at this point, which is the concept of the loosing of the bond.

All right. So one of the weird things that you’re gonna see as soon as you throw up any zodiacal releasing periods into any of the software programs basically, and some of them will show it more prominently and others you’ll just notice it, but it won’t mark it out terribly prominently. But it’s this weird thing that happens in the subperiods on level two, especially about 17-and-a-half years into any general period. So some of the signs, some of the general periods on level one are longer and some of them are shorter. So this doesn’t happen with every sign, but it only happens with the really long ones, where if you go to the subperiods and you start counting around the signs in zodiacal order, some of the general periods are long enough that on level two, the subperiods will count all the way around the signs of the zodiac and come back to where it started. And when that happens, when it comes back to the starting point but the general period is still has a ways to go, instead of starting the cycle over again where it started, it jumps to the opposite sign. And this jump to the opposite sign is known as the loosing of the bond or the breaking of the sequence.

LS: And this is another one of those pieces of this whole zodiacal releasing technique that when I first encountered it sounded like, particularly odd or like, weird or why would that work? But it’s again, another one of those where you just have to start using this and looking at what happened during that period of time, and it does work.

CB: Yeah, I mean, and Valens has a whole like, way where he tries to explain why you have the loosing of the bond and how this makes sense. We don’t need to go into all of that, but the basic thing is just… that’s what it is. There’s, it’s counting around on the subperiods. Like, for example, if you start out in a 25-year Cancer period, it starts out with a 25-month… So 25-year Cancer period on the general level, and then it starts out in 25 months on Cancer on level two, 19 months in Leo, 20 in Virgo, eight in Libra, 15 in Scorpio, 12 in Sagittarius, 27 in Capricorn, 30 in Aquarius, 12 in Pisces, 15 in Aries, eight in Taurus, 20 in Gemini, so we’ve reached the end of the cycle and it comes back to Cancer, but instead of starting over again with another 25-month Cancer period, it jumps to the opposite from Cancer which is Capricorn, and then it starts a 27-month Capricorn period. And that 27-month Capricorn period is the loosing of the bond. And then the cycle continues from that point forward. So 27 to Capricorn, 30 to Aquarius, 12 to Pisces, and so on and so forth. Eventually on the really, really long periods, which are basically just Capricorn and Aquarius periods, it eventually does come back to where it started, but it doesn’t do a loosing of the bond the second time. It just like, repeats. It does actually come back to the original sign at that point.

LS: Right.

CB: All right, so that sounds overly complicated, but if you’re looking at your zodiacal releasing periods in one of the online chart calculators, it’ll be really clear, you know, what that is because the period just stands out because it’s going in zodiacal order, and then suddenly the sequence is broken and it jumps —

LS: Right.

CB: — to the opposite sign.

LS: Right. Yeah. And so what this symbolizes similarly is that it’s an interruption of the sequence. And so that can manifest in a few different ways, but it’s a major turning point no matter how it manifests.

CB: Right. It always marks a major transition, and that’s my primary keyword for zodiacal releasing, is a major transition. And when you’re doing the releasing from the Lot of Spirit, it’s usually a major transition in the native’s career and overall life trajectory. That’s like the primary keyword.

LS: Yeah, definitely.

CB: So a major transition in the career and overall life direction. And the loosing of the bond, it happens on level two, it’s always about 17-and-a-half years into the general period, so it’s pretty reliable. The loosing of the bond also happens on level three and level four —

LS: Right.

CB: — and it’s also significant, although it’s just on a lower level for a much shorter duration, and it’s less significant than it is on level two, because the level two loosing of the bond, you’ll only get a maximum of maybe like, two of them in a person’s life.

LS: Right. Yeah. I mean, and that said, you can easily learn about the loosing of the bond by watching the lower level ones, since you won’t get the other ones very frequently.

CB: Yeah. So some people only ever get like, one loosing of the bond at some point in their life, some people will get two. For most people, the only way to study them is to look at it happening on the lower level, where it is still a significant transition or alteration in the person’s trajectory. We primarily focus on the loosing of the bond and releasing from Spirit, although it does show up and it does actually, it is very significant in releasing from Eros as a transition in relationships, and it also is significant in the Lot of Fortune sometimes in a transition for matters pertaining to the body or health or circumstances. And I’ll have an example of that in just a minute. So the loosing of the bond is actually one of the more reliable and often very dramatic parts of the technique. I think everyone pretty much universally agrees.

LS: Yeah. It tends to jump out simply because it’s a major transition.

CB: Well, yeah, it’s such a major transition, and it often tends to be so dramatic where the person is like, going along and they’re doing one thing, and then all of a sudden, there’s this major transition that occurs primarily in Spirit – if we’re talking about Spirit, it’s in the person’s career. And there’s a few different scenarios; there’s usually three core scenarios. The two most common ones are the person is going in one direction with their career, and then they hit the loosing of the bond and they jump into another career field entirely. So the early, sort of classic – well, one of the examples that I really love to use for that is actually George Lucas. So George Lucas, most people don’t know, but he actually, when he was like, a teenager, he grew up wanting to be a race car driver. And he grew up as a teenager like, driving cars and wanting to do that as his career. And that was like, actually the career track that he was on was to be a professional race car driver. But what ended up happening is that he starts out his life in the Spirit periods in a 20-year Virgo period. And in the fortune periods, he starts out in a 30-year Aquarius period. And what happens is that when he’s like, 17 or 18, he hits a loosing of the bond, where it does this major jump or this major break in the sequence, and he’s out driving and racing cars one day, and he gets in this terrible car accident, where he – somebody, his friend like, slammed into his car going super fast and his car like, flipped and spun out of control, and he was thrown from the car, and then his car smashed into a tree and like, crumpled up like a can. So and then he ended up in the hospital and just like, barely survived, but it was this major traumatic like, life-altering experience, and from that point forward, he didn’t want to race cars anymore, and he decided to go to college. And very shortly after that in college, he developed an interest in filmmaking and ended up becoming a filmmaker and then directed Star Wars and Indiana Jones and all these other movies. But, and everybody, and that’s what he’s known for now, is the guy that made Star Wars as the director of Star Wars and Indiana Jones and stuff like that.

LS: Right.

CB: But most people don’t know that originally he was gonna be a race car driver until this major transition happened. So his case is interesting because he had a loosing of the bond in Spirit. So it’s a classic example of like, being on one trajectory and then suddenly having the loosing of the bond and coming out of it in a completely different career trajectory.

LS: Right.

CB: But his chart is set up so that he simultaneously had a loosing of the bond in the releasing from the Lot of Fortune, which is related to bodily matters and health, and so we can see the like, sudden transition and shake up in terms of, you know, having a near death experience at the same time.

LS: Right. And that’s pretty unique to have both of those at once.

CB: Yeah. It’s not like, a common occurrence.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So for him, that’s how that manifest, and that’s like, one of the classic scenarios for the loosing of the bond in terms of it being a dramatic transition in the person’s career and life trajectory. That’s one of the keywords that I use. Another scenario that you sometimes see, especially if the loosing of the bond occurs when a person is in a general period that’s also angular from Fortune, is the person who has a loosing of the bond and they’re in one career field and they’ve been in that career field or building up to it for 17 years at that point. But then they hit the loosing of the bond and they jump up to the highest level that they can get in their chosen career field. So the classic example of that that we found early on in the research studies was Al Gore, who began a 27-year Capricorn period and launched his career as a politician and got his first public office at the beginning of that. But then 17 years into it, he hits a loosing of the bond in 1992, and he goes from being a politician to being vice president of the United States, and he hits what would end up being his highest political appointment within his chosen career field.

LS: Right. Yeah. And both of those two show up pretty frequently in client charts. And, yeah, were you gonna say one more?

CB: No. I was just gonna throw Al Gore up if I can find —

LS: Okay.

CB: — the chart really quick.

LS: Sure. Yeah. So that’s pretty common, both of those. I always like to lay out the few possibilities when I’m talking this through to people, if they’ve already experienced a loosing of the bond or if they have one coming up. So sometimes people like, making a major departure or sometimes otherwise ramping up to the next level if they don’t make a departure.

CB: Right. So look at this. I mean, he’s only had one of these loosings of the bond. I think actually by now he might have either recently had one or has another one coming up actually pretty soon, but I don’t have it displayed here. But so he starts out in this 15-year Scorpio period, his Lot of Spirit’s in Scorpio. So 15 years of Scorpio, but since Scorpio is only 15 years long, it’s not long enough to have a loosing of the bond, so the period has to be 17 years long at least in order to have a loosing of the bond.

LS: Right.

CB: So he goes from 1948 to 1963 in the Scorpio period, and there’s no loosing of the bond. Then he goes into a 12-year Sagittarius period, and again, that sign’s not long enough for a loosing of the bond, so nothing, it doesn’t happen. Then he goes into Capricorn in 1974 for 27 years, and this is the 10th sign from Fortune, so that’s the beginning of his peak period, and he gets elected to public office around that time. Then 17 years into it, on the subperiods, you can see in the readout on the video, on the subperiods it starts with 27 months in Capricorn from 1974 to 1977, then 30 months in Aquarius, then 12 in Pisces, 15 in Aries, eight in Taurus, 12 in Gemini, 27 in Cancer, 19 in Leo, 20 in Virgo, eight in Libra, and I’m just reading all of these out to show you the almost like, the absurdity of what you actually have to pay attention to how many signs a person has to go through before they can get to the loosing of the bond, which shows how extraordinary it is when you see an example like this that then the person hits it. And eventually he starts the loosing of the bond as a 25-month Cancer period where it jumps from Capricorn to Cancer starting March 10th of 1992 through March 30th of 1994. And of course, a few months after he starts it at the end of 1992, him and Bill Clinton win the 1992 presidential election, and he becomes vice president.

LS: Right.

CB: So it’s like, it’s this almost like, one loosing of the bond. He hasn’t had another one up to this point. This is the only one that he’s had at least up to this point in his life, and it happens to coincide with him becoming vice president.

LS: Right. So you can see how infrequent it is and how important it can be, therefore, when it does happen.

CB: Yeah, how infrequent and how major of a change in the person’s trajectory it is. Because it’s like, he was a politician up to that point, and he was in this 27-year peak period up to that point, but then suddenly, he hits the loosing of the bond and he jumps up to the very top of that career field.

LS: Right. And so that is a unique combination of combining the peak period and the loosing of the bond of course, whereas it sometimes isn’t quite that dramatic if it’s still a loosing of the bond but not a peak period.

CB: Yeah, exactly. And that, so it really depends on where in the angular triad it falls. If it’s in the first phase of the angular triad, where it’s still preparatory, I actually have an example of that – Robert Downey Jr. is my favorite example of that, because he had a loosing of the bond in his preparatory period and it happens at the very end of it, and that was actually him getting the Iron Man role. So what were you saying about that?

LS: No, that was it. Basically, that it’s even more dramatic if it’s a combination with the peak period, but it’s still important and noticeable even if it’s just the loosing of the bond and not a peak period.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Because it’s still infrequent.

CB: I mean, it’s a major transition no matter what.

LS: Yeah.

CB: There’s just different ways to qualify it depending on what part of the angular triad it falls in.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So here’s Robert Downey. Jr. Remember I talked about how he was in this long 19-year Leo period from 1989 all the way until 2008. Then in August of 2008, he starts a 20-year Virgo period, and Virgo is the sign that contains the Lot of Fortune, so it’s his 20-year peak period. But look at what happens on the readout. He’s in this 19-year Leo period from 1989 to 2008, but because it’s 19 years long, that means we know that there’s gonna be a loosing of the bond 17 years into it.

LS: Right.

CB: And he hits that starting March of 2007, and the loosing of the bond kicks in right at the end of the 19-year Leo period, and it goes all the way until August of 2008. So he hits a loosing of the bond at the very end of his preparatory period, and that’s when he gets the Iron Man role, he films it, and then it gets released, and then it comes out and he just explodes in popularity, and within a few years becomes the highest paid actor in Hollywood. So his case is so dramatic, not just because he went into a peak period for 20 years starting in 2008, but because he sort of gets like, catapulted into it by a loosing of the bond that occurs right before he goes into the peak period.

LS: Right, yeah. And that’s really interesting timing, that preceding it immediately.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. So there’s other scenarios as well. Sometimes there’s also the thing that happens where you have the loosing of the bond that takes place in the last third of the angular triad, when the person’s in a cool-down phase. And I’ve seen that in a lot of client charts at things like retirement or moving out of a career field —

LS: Right.

CB: — where the person is like, wrapping something up and they’re in the last third of the angular triads, so they’re already carrying forward and bringing to completion, but then they hit the loosing of the bond and it’s like, they’re finally transitioning out of what they’ve been doing for several decades up to that point. So it can be something —

LS: Right.

CB: — like retirement.

LS: Yeah. That makes sense.

CB: Sure. So do you have any loosing of the bond examples?

LS: Let’s see, loosing of the bond… I mean, well, we haven’t mentioned foreshadowing. Should we mention that first or no?

CB: Let me see if there’s any other… I think I had one other example I wanted to use before we get to the foreshadowing periods.

LS: Okay. Because I do have one of my own after we talk about the foreshadowing.

CB: Okay. So, I mean, there’s other classic examples. Like, I have some really good ones. Like, one of my favorite ones that I found in just doing research, because like, once you get this technique and it can do stuff like this, like, you start searching for timed birth charts and you can find some really cool historical examples. Like, one of my favorites is Emperor Hirohito, who was the emperor of Japan during World War Two. And with his, he had two loosings of the bond. One of them occurred between 1926 and 1927, and what happens at that loosing of the bond is he actually became emperor due to the death of his father in December of 1926. And then the coronation was November of 1928. So he has a loosing of the bond and literally his career transition is becoming emperor.

LS: Your mileage may vary.

CB: I mean, I’m… You know, who knows?

LS: Don’t, you know, get your expectations too high based on that. But yes, that’s a striking one.

CB: Well, and then the other end of this spectrum though, is he then went into a 25-year Cancer period. And then 17 years into that, he hits a second loosing of the bond, and this was between April of 1946 and June of 1948, and this was in the aftermath of World War Two. And what happened is after, you know, Japan and Germany lost World War Two, he… well, this one’s interesting not just because it’s a loosing of the bond, but it’s also jumping from Cancer and it jumps to Capricorn, which in his birth chart is the sign that contains Jupiter and Saturn. But he has a night chart, so it’s actually jumping to the sign that contains the most difficult planet in his chart. And that’s how you start combining all these different components —

LS: Right.

CB: — is that the quality of what the person experiences at the loosing of the bond is sometimes dictated by the planets contained in the sign that’s become activated or that are aspecting that sign by hard aspect.

LS: Definitely, yeah.

CB: So it’s actually a difficult transition for him. And what happens is this is after World War Two, Japan loses of course, and so he’s – one of the things that happens in the aftermath when the US comes in and sort of takes over is that he was forced to reject the divine status of the emperor and basically became a constitutional monarch at that time instead of being like, an imperial sovereign. So essentially, the emperorship in Japan became like, an influential figurehead in terms of political power.

LS: Right.

CB: So we’ve got like, both scenarios here going on in one person’s life, where one loosing of the bond, he becomes emperor and like, reaches the height of, you know, power of like, humanly power on some level in his country, whereas on the other hand, he hits a loosing of the bond and he loses power in some sense.

LS: Right.

CB: And of course he’s still emperor, so it’s still in pretty good shape compared to like, most people.

LS: Right.

CB: But in terms of his subjective experience of life, I’m sure that was not like, a great transition.

LS: Right. It’s like a huge demotion basically.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah, basically.

LS: Yeah, that’s really fascinating. I mean, I’ve heard that one before, but it’s fascinating to in particular, I feel like, line up different people’s sometimes radically different contexts, you know, and kind of like, where they’re coming from and what that means in their life. Like, this being like, a really unique example, for instance.

CB: Yeah. Well, because there’s ones like that, or like Prince – Queen Elizabeth, the current queen of England, also had a loosing of the bond, I believe, when she became queen, when she was coronated. You have examples like that, but then you also have examples like one of the ones that I use in my course, was like, a buddy of mine who like, worked at a Pizza Hut, and it was actually, I think the Pizza Hut that I worked at at my first job, but he ended up getting a promotion where he became like, manager of the Pizza Hut at a loosing of the bond on one of the lower levels on like, level three.

LS: Right.

CB: But it was like, a big deal at the time.

LS: Yeah.

CB: And notable, but it’s just interesting because it just, it entirely depends on the context of your life —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — and like, what you’re doing. Are you somebody that could become emperor? And then in which case maybe have a loosing of the bond, become emperor. Are you a politician like Al Gore? Are you a movie star like Robert Downey Jr. or what? You know, it just depends on your station in life.

LS: Right. And that’s why – I mean, these are always really striking because people know who they are, but that’s always why I find the everyday people ones so fascinating. Because one, they’re relatable, you know. Like, I don’t know, like a promotion at work is usually more relatable than becoming emperor, you know? But of course maybe less striking. But also just interesting to see how exactly it plays out for every different person. And, you know, context is always important for anything you do in astrology, like all charts are like, contextually based, you know. But that really carries through to this technique as well.

CB: Yeah. I mean, and that’s something we were discussing recently. I forget the context, but I think I was talking about it in the context of like, doing written delineations and why I think most astrologers, like newer astrologers often start out with written delineations because it feels like less pressure and more comfortable, but why you need to push yourself to do verbal dialogues with people, and that’s how astrological consultations have traditionally been done. Because it’s more effective and it’s better both for you as the astrologer, as well as the client, partially because of having that back and forth as part of a dialogue, and that’s just as true in the context of this technique is understanding the context and the trajectory of the person’s life so that you can then make statements about the future.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Yeah. So this is like, one of the most fascinating parts of the technique, and so this is the one I have just a million examples for. We’re not gonna go through them all here, as usual, because I have a million in the course lecture. But like, Obama was another one where the basis of our… when Patrick Watson and I did the political astrology blog, we covered the 2012 presidential election. And part of the basis of our prediction in the 2012 election that Obama would win is that we saw that he had a loosing of the bond coming up that would hit in the spring of 2017. And so that seemed to imply that he’d be having a major career transition in the spring of 2017, which back in 2012 we took to mean that he would get reelected and then the loosing of the bond or the career transition would be him sort of going on his way out from the presidency, and the major transition is like, what happens when you’re no longer president.

LS: Right. Yeah. And that really makes sense in this context, because that is such a striking transition point compared to like, anything else that would happen, you know, like, four years earlier or whenever.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah. And there’s other examples, like John Kerry was at a loosing of the bond in the 2004 presidential election, where he hit like, the height of his career on that level in some way and became the nominee for his party, but then lost the election. The loosing of the bond, though, is still tricky. It actually tripped me up in the 2016 election, partially because it indicated that Trump was gonna have a loosing of the bond, but it wouldn’t start until a year after the 2016 election, and then it would last for a couple of years at that point. So we’re actually right in the middle of that now, and it peaks later this year. So that’s still something that we’re looking to see what that is and how that ends up working out for him.

LS: Right.

CB: So that is all I’ll say about that, since I’ve done other episodes talking about that, and you can go back and listen to some of them to understand the greater context then now that you understand this technique of what that was all about.

LS: Right.

CB: All right. So we’re good on the loosing of the bond examples that we want to do or that we need to do. One other point that you mentioned that we should talk about is the foreshadowing period.

LS: Yeah. So the foreshadowing period is simply the first time that, as you go around in zodiacal order, it reaches the sign that it will later reach when it does the loosing of the bond. And so about halfway through as it’s counting through the signs, you’ll get to that sign one time before the loosing of the bond, and what that tends to mean is there’s some connection, or what that does mean, is there is some connection between those two periods that have the same sign. And so basically, the foreshadowing period is – it has a few different patterns about how they can be connected. So the foreshadowing period is sometimes, as we mentioned, you start to do something and then ramp up to the next level at the loosing of the bond. There’s also you do something during the foreshadowing period, and then you reverse that decision during the loosing of the bond. And let’s see, which one am I forgetting? Those two…

CB: Let’s – hold on, let’s —

LS: Okay.

CB: — let me throw up a diagram that I just found, just to make sure people are clear about this. So what the foreshadowing period is, as you just said, it’s the second time the sign is activated, and what you have to understand – the loosing of the bond is, because it’s jumping back to a sign that was already activated earlier, it’s actually repeating a sign suddenly. So this part of the technique is something that was a unique development of mine. So Valens doesn’t mention this. This is something that I discovered because I kept going through client charts, and over and over again, I found that about eight years before the loosing of the bond, that the loosing of the bond was always a major transition in their career and sort of trajectory. But what would happen is that eight years before that approximately, the first time the sign was activated that it would later jump to at the loosing of the bond, that there was some sort of foreshadowing of events that would literally – kind of literally, not figuratively – foreshadow the major transition that would occur at the loosing of the bond.

LS: Yeah.

CB: So what were the scenarios that you already mentioned?

LS: So one scenario is you go in a certain direction during the foreshadowing period, and then you reverse that decision somehow during the loosing of the bond. Another is – that’s a little less frequent. Another —

CB: Yeah, that one doesn’t happen as often.

LS: It doesn’t happen as often. One that’s pretty frequent is you start to do something during the foreshadowing period but don’t maybe quite bring it to fruition at that time for whatever circumstantial reasons, and then you do finally bring it to fruition during the loosing of the bond.

CB: Yeah, I mean, and that’s the most common scenario, I think, and that was the one that I kept noticing in client charts was they hit the foreshadowing period, they have a certain sign that’s activated, and they start working on something or they get an idea to start going in a specific direction with their career. And sometimes they actually start working towards it and like, moving towards making a major change or what would be a major change in their life, but then something happens and they decide not to bring that to completion or not to follow through with it.

LS: Right.

CB: So they kind of put it aside and then continue about their current career trajectory or they go back to their current career trajectory for the next eight years. But then eight years later, they hit the loosing of the bond, and it jumps back to suddenly – like, the sequence breaks and they’re thrown back to that same sign that they were at eight years earlier. And that second time around, usually there’s a reminder and they’re thrown back into a similar set of circumstances as they were eight years before. And they have an opportunity in that time, the second time around, they almost always follow through with it, and they start working on the thing that they had put aside previously and that second time they follow through and complete it, and it leads to a major career transition at that point.

LS: Right.

CB: So that’s the most common —

LS: That is —

CB: — one that we usually see in the foreshadowing period.

LS: That’s the most common one. And I think one other is, we sort of mentioned it earlier, is someone already does in fact do something that’s important to them during the foreshadowing period, but then they ramp that up to the next level at the loosing of the bond.

CB: Yeah. So that scenario is like… I’ve seen a lot, like a surprising number of clients where they started working on like, a degree, especially like, a master’s degree or got a master’s degree at the foreshadowing period, but then due to delays and issues, they don’t end up getting their PhD finally until the loosing of the bond. I had like, a few clients that were like that.

LS: That’s a good one.

CB: Yeah.

LS: Yeah.

CB: What other scenarios have you seen?

LS: I’ve seen a lot of… and I’m trying to think of any specific ones, but I’ve seen a lot of that middle version, where people almost do something but don’t quite, and then they do bring it to fruition later. And it’s always interesting to talk to people about how that’s going for them or what – like, especially if they haven’t hit the loosing of the bond yet, because you try to jog their memory like, “What were you thinking about doing?” You know, and sometimes people remember and sometimes people don’t with regard to the foreshadowing period. Because if it is in fact of the model variant where they almost did something but didn’t quite, they may or may not remember that, because it’s not something they actually finished doing, you know?

CB: Right.

LS: And so sometimes people do remember, in fact, like, “Oh, I was thinking about this, but then I didn’t do it then.” But sometimes it’s subtle.

CB: Oh, yeah. No. I mean, that’s a huge issue in researching the foreshadowing period is that oftentimes you have to be very… It’s partially based on the person’s memory, and they may not remember it, but because the foreshadowing period is often the thing that they almost did but didn’t end up doing, it doesn’t often stand out in their memory or their chronology to them, and you sometimes have to tease it out and like, ask some questions in order to understand what it was because they didn’t make a major change in their life at that point, they don’t remember it as being super significant.

LS: Exactly.

CB: It just ends up being this thing that they almost did but then didn’t follow through on until eight years later.

LS: Right. And usually in your memory, especially as longer time passes, you remember what actually happened, but rarely like, what you were thinking about that didn’t fully happen.

CB: Yeah, exactly.

LS: Yeah. Unless it was like, more distinct to you, like, going back to school but not doing it or something like that.

CB: Right. So that’s again another one of those like, frustrating things then sometimes in working with clients is really having to be like, an investigator and be like, you know, Sherlock Holmes in order to figure out this person’s chronology.

LS: Right.

CB: And sometimes being able to ask the right questions in order to understand the context of certain periods, because then – this then becomes one of the keys to predicting what the loosing of the bond will be about is figuring out what happened in the foreshadowing period.

LS: Right.

CB: And if you can figure out what happened or what almost happened in the foreshadowing period, that becomes the thing that the loosing of the bond is predicated on.

LS: Definitely.

CB: And if you can figure it out, then you can anticipate the loosing of the bond. If you can’t, then it’s a little bit more tricky.

LS: Yeah, for sure. And I feel like in practice I’m usually able to help someone figure it out, but not a hundred percent of the time, based on their memory and so forth.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: All right. So here’s a quick example to give you guys like, a tangible example of this. This is a client chart, and this is a guy who… he was in a 20-year Gemini period, and then like, a decade into it, he hits the foreshadowing period, which was a 12-month Sagittarius period. And what happens is that during this 12-month Sagittarius period, he told me about how he remembered at this point realizing that he actually had an aptitude for drawing, and for a brief period of time, he thought that, suddenly started thinking like, this is what he was gonna do something with that once he realized he had a skill for drawing, and he wanted to make a career out of it. But then after sort of pursuing it for a little bit, he decided that he couldn’t. He’s like, “This isn’t actually gonna work.” And he drops the idea and like, sets it aside or forgets about it and keeps going on with his current career. So but then about eight years later, he hits the loosing of the bond and it jumps back to that same sign, back to Sagittarius. And this time, he goes back to like, that idea comes back into his life, and he decides to follow through with it at this point, and he ended up getting a job as an animator’s assistant at that point and getting into this completely new career field, and that ended up leading to a long and successful career as an animator where he ended up working on a lot of really famous shows. And part of what happened is that shortly after that, he went into a 25-year Cancer period, and Cancer is the 10th from Fortune. So this loosing of the bond was happening in the preparatory period, and the loosing of the bond happened just a few years before he went into his major peak period.

LS: Yeah, that’s a great example and pretty like, prototypical of one of the major variants.

CB: Yeah. It’s pretty standard, especially of the first part of the angular triad like, sequence.

LS: Yeah.

CB: But that idea just of, you know, starting to work on something, almost doing it, but then not, and then eight years later it comes back and then you follow through is very common.

LS: Definitely.

CB: Or the other is just like, set up one phase of it, like getting a master’s degree or a bachelor’s or whatever, and then hitting the loosing the bond and then completing your PhD, which then launches you into that actual career field —

LS: Right.

CB: — is another scenario. All right. Any other examples of the loosing of the bond, or do you have any that you wanted to mention?

LS: I had one just that I noticed in my own chronology. It wasn’t a peak period, so, but it was still interesting. So that during the foreshadowing period, I was in grad school, and I had become a teaching assistant, and so I was in front of classes for the first time and, you know, having to kind of lecture and things like that. I was also studying astrology at the same time. And it was something that I was kind of like, debating on pursuing more seriously, but in the meantime, I was in grad school and kind of more on an academia track at that time. And then during the next – so that was the foreshadowing level two. During the next level two, I actually dropped out of grad school and ended up just kind of working random jobs and like, studying astrology over time. And then finally, during the loosing of the bond that repeated that earlier foreshadowing period from grad school, I ended up giving my first astrology lecture at a major conference. And so it was kind of like a very similar experience on the one hand of like, being up in front of, you know, people kind of talking to public audiences, but it was also a switch from kind of what was in the back of my head at the time earlier on of like, pursuing astrology more seriously, but then not like, kind of fully going for that as my primary thing at the time. And then finally giving my first astrology lecture finally as the loosing of the bond.

CB: Okay.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Right. So teaching at the foreshadowing period versus like, giving your first major astrology lecture in what would become your major career established career field?

LS: Yeah, exactly.

CB: And then previously in the foreshadowing period, you were also doing it was more like religious studies, whereas then by the loosing of the bond, you were doing astrology?

LS: Yeah, exactly.

CB: All right, that’s pretty good. Okay, well, I mean, I have just like, a ton of examples of the loosing of the bond, I can’t go through all of them. I wish I could, because it’s one of the more fun and fascinating parts of the technique. The loosing of the bond does also work in Fortune, and that can sometimes be like, a major transition in terms of the person’s bodily and health matters or in terms of circumstances, right?

LS: Yeah, definitely. And also for Eros, I mean, I see it a lot in Eros.

CB: Yeah, Eros, major ones. I mean, one of the ones I always use for releasing from fortune is like, Princess Diana. If you do her releasing from the Lot of Fortune, she was in a 20-year Virgo period from 1980 to 1999, which is the sign that contained Mars in a day chart, which was problematic. And then she hits a loosing of the bond starting July 22, 1997, and it jumps from Virgo to Pisces, but it’s still opposite to that Mars in a day chart, so it’s in the quadruplicity of the most difficult planet. And, of course, just a few weeks later, she died in a car accident August 31st, 1997.

LS: Wow.

CB: So it was a 12-month Pisces period was the loosing of the bond, and it started just, what? Like, three or four weeks before that car accident. So you’ll see stuff like that sometimes in terms of… Most of the time, then, for obvious reasons, we’re using, as we said earlier, zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Spirit and Eros primarily with clients because that’s actually like, productive and helpful —

LS: Right.

CB: — whereas doing releasing from Fortune sometimes can bring in other factors that are a little bit more, less, I don’t know, weird.

LS: Well, it’s often just stuff out of the person’s control as well, so it’s hard to bring any sort of counseling aspect to it, I feel.

CB: Yeah, I mean, there is a level where… The way that Valens actually presents the technique, and I would recommend people reading those early chapters of the anthology, I think starting with like, chapter four of book four where he introduces zodiacal releasing, because he introduces it in a slightly different way than the way that I describe it here, and this is something that Patrick Watson has been going back to and researching more over the past few years as he’s been sort of researching the technique more and also dealing a little bit with some of the stuff we dealt with or that happened in the 2016 election. But Valens does make this distinction between saying that people that work, do more with their mind, that you release from Spirit, whereas people that do more with the body release from Fortune, and sets up kind of a dynamic where you almost, if you would have a profession that has to do more with bodily things where the releasing from Fortune might be more relevant, and he also sets up a distinction between sometimes saying that one lot will take over for both lots if one of them is really well placed and the other is really poorly placed, so that there could be different conditions for releasing from one lot or another —

LS: Right.

CB: — based on a sort of predomination argument that he does, which is similar to what the astrologers do for the length of life technique. I’ve tended to standardize the application of the technique, and I haven’t seen the necessity in most of the time when I’m working with clients of making those sorts of distinctions, because people seem to be pretty consistently in the releasing from Spirit that seems to match their career and their overall life direction, whereas the releasing from Fortune more or less seems to match bodily matters and circumstances. And then there’s, of course, the additional modification of using Eros for relationships, and that working relatively consistently for me. So it’s worth exploring, and it’s worth debating as we’re reviving this technique and bringing it back into practice if there are instances like that or if people have examples where they feel like, you know, it might be relevant to the positioning of Spirit or Fortune in the birth chart, and that modifying things or one working better for certain things or certain professions or what have you.

LS: It’d be interesting to do a study of only like, massage therapists or something like that.

CB: Right.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Yeah, or like boxers was one of the debates that we had early on when we were researching at Project Hindsight. And we were using examples like Muhammad Ali or something like that and some of the questions about like, “What is truly?” Because it gets a little murky at a certain point —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — of like, what is the person actualizing their potential or their intellect versus what is them actualizing their body?

LS: Yeah.

CB: Like, you start getting a little dicey territory there at some point to me, which was one of the problems I always had.

LS: Yeah, because even if you have like, a bodily-involved career, you’re still like, making volitional decisions and having hopes for it and things like that, you know?

CB: Right.

LS: Which seem more like a Spirit thing.

CB: Yeah, definitely. All right, so that’s the foreshadowing period, that’s the loosing of the bond. There’s a ton of other interesting examples in terms of loosing of the bond that we don’t go into.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Check out the 18-hour lecture for that, because there I just go into a ton until you’re absolutely sick of the loosing of the bond —

LS: Right.

CB: — and wanna hear nothing more of it. All right. Let’s take a break.

LS: Okay.

CB: All right. So those are most of the major interpretive principles, those are all of the interpretive principles that we wanted to introduce for the purpose of this podcast episode, which has, I believe, become one of if not the longest podcast episode that I’ve done so far. Those are some of the core interpretive principles in the technique. So there are a bunch of other interpretive principles, actually, that we’re gonna skip over and not get to for the purpose of this, since —

LS: Right.

CB: — we’re not trying to do the full 18-hour thing.

LS: Right.

CB: So there is the completion period, or what I call the completion period, which is when the subperiods actually come back to the original sign which they skipped at the loosing of the bond. I found that that’s an important interpretive principle —

LS: Yeah, for sure.

CB: — where things come full circle. There’s a culmination period, which is when on the subperiods it comes to the 10th sign relative to the general period, and I find there’s often a culmination of events which were initiated at the start of the general period. There is the activation of the ruler of Spirit, which was a piece that Schmidt first worked out based on a statement that Valens makes, and it turns out that this is oftentimes where something about the native’s life’s work becomes more clear, and that’s a really useful interpretive principle. There’s other stuff, like activating the ruler of a general period or activating the ruler of other subperiods, as well as just working with the rulers of the signs in general that’s sort of important and relevant and useful as additional interpretive nuances. But yeah, not necessary to go into all of that here.

LS: Right.

CB: This is just a basic introduction. So that now hopefully, if this is your first time learning about the technique, you have some basic understanding of it —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — and some of the major pieces.

LS: Definitely. So you can start using this or start experimenting with this with these major kind of few building blocks that we’ve told you so far. But just know that there are other things to go into if you wanna go deeper into this.

CB: Yeah, definitely. So let’s start to wrap this up in terms of just philosophical implications. So obviously here, like we said at the very start, there’s a few points that we made early on that were supposed to be our concluding points. But just to reiterate them here without completely repeating what we said earlier, there’s something startling about this technique. I feel like anybody, at this point in the lecture, we haven’t even given that many examples, honestly. Like, I haven’t even hit the audience with as many examples as I would normally hit them with in my basic like, 75-minute introduction to this technique or where I just like, throw out a bunch of example charts or my 18-hour lecture where I do, I think, over 100 example charts to really drive the point home. But I think even with this limited number of example charts that we have shown, there’s something startling about this technique. Because not just that it works, but it’s based on calculations that are done based on the birth chart which are built into the chart from the moment of birth.

LS: Definitely. And it’s just kind of fascinating to think about how the intersection happens between things that you’re trying to do in your life. You often think about things that you’re trying to do just with that alone in mind. But this technique actually shows that intersecting with the rest of life itself and circumstances surrounding things that either make it, you know, more possible for you to do what you want or make something go really illustriously or maybe the opposite, like temporarily block you or different things like that at different times. And it’s just philosophically really interesting to actually… you could hypothesize about that kind of thing happening in life, but to actually be able to watch it play out, period by period, is actually kind of bizarre.

CB: Yeah, well, it’s something about dealing with chance events.

LS: Yeah.

CB: Something about dealing with chance events or dealing with fortune and the intersection between fortune or chance and choice and action and volition.

LS: Yeah.

CB: But also it goes back to something that I know you were always very interested in and one of your first lectures at conferences was about, which is about the importance of understanding and sometimes recognizing those things that are outside of our control, because one of the – to me – one of the flaws and one of the downsides of modern humanistic psychological astrology was that in the attempt to empower people and encourage people, they would sometimes inadvertently, falsely make people believe that everything was up to them, and that if there was something wrong in your life, that it was somehow your fault for not truly actualizing your potential. But sometimes while there is a lot that’s up to us that has to do with what we might conceptualize as choice or free will on some level, there’s also this whole other half of the equation that’s very important, which is the element of chance and the element of circumstance.

LS: Definitely, yeah, and that’s, as you know, a huge soapbox of mine. But, you know, for good reasons, I think, because you can see that lots of people are trying to do their best, you know, in life. And of course, you know, we don’t always, but I mean, just saying, most people try to do their best with whatever is possible. And so it’s really interesting to see, particularly using this technique, it’s almost like again, it’s a similar thing where you could theorize that off the top of your head. You could say, “Well, not everything is up to us.” But this is almost like a way to sort of empirically show that in fact.

CB: Yeah, to empirically show the different elements of choice versus the elements of circumstance, and then sometimes showing objectively the intersection between the two.

LS: Definitely. And you know, you can also see, if you study enough charts, you know, either client charts or celebrity charts or what have you, how sometimes people are kind of just like, in the right spot at the right time, and like, something takes off and sometimes even like, really early in their life. But oftentimes when that happens, people often think that it’s mostly because of their own, you know, free will. And, you know, certainly it’s not that people just sit back and get things like that, like huge success, you have to still put in your effort, but it’s interesting to see how that works for some people, and then they kind of like, rationalize that like, it was just because they worked really hard or they’re really great or whatever. And then, you know, with some other people, they may be like, putting in just as much effort, but they’re like, running into walls.

CB: Yeah, I mean, people tend to normalize their own experiences and their own circumstances and actions and things and think that it’s the same for everybody, which is something we touched on earlier in a different context, but it also becomes relevant in this discussion in terms of people assuming that the way their life works out is the same way for everybody, but that’s not true at all. It really – different people have different circumstances and different options and availabilities, and the sequence of events in people’s lives are different, and the windows of opportunity for chance and fortune are different. And a lot of it is just up to this, or at least it’s reflected in some weird way in the birth chart and in some of the things that derive from the birth chart, which is, you know, the alignment of the planets at the moment a person was born.

LS: Right.

CB: But some techniques like this, which then show the development and eventuation and the… Yeah, just the results of the birth chart in some sense.

LS: Right. And while I know that one of the things that I find most important in that is kind of like, not blaming people when things like, don’t go 100% their way, I know that one of the things that you’ve talked about a lot in the past that’s also related to this is kind of there being a purposeful nature to fate and fate not having to necessarily be a negative thing the way people often, at least in modern times, assume that it is.

CB: Yeah. I mean, this is something we’ve talked about and like, sort of like, low level debated for years, which is to me one of the things that this does, seeing people’s lives play out like this in accordance with time periods like this and seeing it happen, being outlined from the moment of birth gives me a greater sense – and this was the philosophical crisis. So now it’s like, we can come full circle, and I can explain what I said at the beginning where I learned this technique, and then I had a philosophical crisis for a couple of years because of this, because it does certainly give you the impression or some sort of implication that things are at the very least more pre-determined than we might usually be accustomed to seeing, even if with a technique like this. It’s… one of the things I was just thinking or the phrase I was thinking was that it’s showing the unfolding of the potentiality of the birth chart. But to the extent that that’s true, it means there is a potentiality in the birth chart, that is then being unfolded during the course of the person’s life, and this technique is somehow objectively describing or outlining that in, at the very least, in very broad terms. But sometimes it gets bizarre when you start breaking it down to the subperiods and seeing that individual months and days are even being outlined. That’s when it starts getting even more sort of eerie than it already is.

LS: It really does, yeah.

CB: And that’s something that I can’t at all ever explain properly or convey properly in a single lecture on this. It’s something you really have to experience yourself by going about and living your life and doing the things that you would normally naturally do, and then every once in a while, you’ll glance at the zodiacal releasing periods, and it’s like, perfectly outlining those things that you just did that were turning points for you and your career, your love life or what have you over the past week or month or year, what have you.

LS: Right, yeah. And I think that’s one of the ways that I had to wrap my own mind around it, probably took a good couple years or so, is you know, my initial feeling was that things were only meaningful or spiritual or something like that if they were completely freely chosen or if you were completely making it happen or that kind of thing. And this kind of… I had to have some sort of reorientation to seeing that there is some sort of beauty or meaning in seeing something that’s already laid out and living your life either in accordance with that or just like, I don’t know, something about that I can’t fully put into words, but something like that.

CB: Yeah. Well, I mean, that was the debate that we had that was ongoing for a long time, which is, to me, seeing all this stuff outlined implied to me that there was some sort of more design or like, purposeness… purpose?

LS: Purposefulness?

CB: Purposefulness. It’s been four hours.

LS: Five, almost.

CB: Five hours. There is a sense of purpose or meaning underlying events and the sequence of events in a person’s life. And there were some broader philosophical… you know, sometimes people are really quick to, like I said before at the start of this, people oftentimes approach astrology with their preconceptions about philosophy and religion and other things, and then they project that onto the astrology. And this is where instead of trying to do this, we’re just doing the technique and instead seeing in what way, what that tells us about the universe and in what way that then informs our philosophy. And to me, one of the things I always thought that it seemed to inform to me was that if this is truly legitimate, if this is working in the way that it seems to be, then it seems to indicate more of a deliberateness about the sequence of events and about like, fate, some broader concept of fate actually existing objectively out there.

LS: Right.

CB: And if that’s true, there being a sort of deliberateness about nature and about the sequence of events in a person’s life that to me, instead of that being a negative or an overbearing or a depressing concept, there was a sort of like, beauty and elegance to me about that. And that was the thing I think it takes a little bit though to get accustomed to is seeing the elegance of that and the beauty of that rather than viewing it as something negative in some way.

LS: Yeah. And I think it’s almost like, a Saturnian type of philosophy or like, spirituality, sort of like seeing the beauty in necessity or in something that is, you know, maybe more determined than you might have thought before. So it’s something that has rules that you can look at and be like, “That’s what’s happening.”

CB: Right. Because the bizarre part though, it’s not the chance or the thing – we keep focusing and going back to the chance or the fortune and the circumstances and how that falls into alignment with choices. The bizarre part, though, is a lot of these examples are people making choices or actions out of what they experience as their own free will.

LS: Yeah, definitely.

CB: And then how do you define that? You know, your free will is your experience of making choices, but what if in your experience of making choices, what if that choice that you were gonna make at that point in your life was already in some way, even in broad terms, pre-determined?

LS: Right.

CB: You know, what then is that choice? Does that take away at all from that choice that you made or your experience of making it? I mean, some people that talk about this abstractly would say yes and say you don’t have any such thing as free will if it’s not completely indeterminant. But I don’t think that’s necessarily the case; I think you still have the experience of making choices, and choice is still this mixture of things that partially arises from you and who you are and what your background experience is and partially arises from like, circumstances and things like that. And I’m not sure if it completely devalues the experience of making choices and our experience of having free will, even if it was partially illusory in some sense. There’s still a sort of beauty and elegance and an interplay between fate and choice that happens.

LS: Right. And this shows that interplay, and it’s also almost like, you know, if your choices are also somehow informed or predetermined or there’s something fated about your choices themselves, it almost gives you a sense of not just purposefulness, but like, that there is something bigger than you or like, you’re subsumed in something bigger. Because like, if you as an individual can experience the process of having that choice and making that choice over and over with different things, but this is already kind of written out, you know, and you can analyze it, and you can see when certain things will happen well in advance, then that does give a sense of like, “What is the universe like that we experience ourselves within that?” Does that make sense?

CB: Yeah. I mean, to me, it doesn’t necessarily devalue the fact, the experience of having choice and making choice, because that is our perception of living in the world that we, you know, are making our choices in that way. It doesn’t necessarily devalue that as much as one might think it does in an immediate reaction to something like this, because your experience is still the same basically, is still virtually the same.

LS: Right. And, you know, perhaps there’s even a reorientation of the question itself, which is, what if the meaningfulness is not necessarily only in the choices that you make but in the experiences that you actually have?

CB: Right, exactly.

LS: And this is mapping out those experiences.

CB: Right, yeah. So there’s a lot of different ways we can go with that, there’s a lot of different discussions to be had, and there’s a lot of different discussions that need to be had at this point as a technique like this is reintroduced into contemporary astrology. And this is probably then one of the first – I’ve been slowly like, dropping it into and introducing it into contemporary astrology over the course of the past decade through my lectures and through my teachings and through my book. In the last chapter of my book, I sort of briefly get into zodiacal releasing, but this is probably one of the first really a little more thorough public treatments of the technique that’s happened.

LS: Right.

CB: So there’s discussions about, you know, the application of the technique just in general, like, what can you do with it as astrologers? Which gets into some of those other interpretive principles and other questions. There’s still a lot of stuff to research – that comes back to that original point that I made earlier, that sometimes, you know, sometimes I like to focus on the things that I do know or I do feel are solid or reliable, and there’s other things that are still question marks or like, areas to research. And it’s such a vast, huge technique, and astrology is such a vast field – it’s like, one astrologer or a few astrologers can’t do everything. But there are like, collective projects that together we can each research some small piece of it and push it as far as we can go with our specific area or specializations and then sometimes hand it over to others to do other parts of that.

LS: Definitely.

CB: So that’s part of what we’re doing here. There’s that technical part of it that still needs to be researched. There’s the client side thing of client side manner, which is a whole other thing that I’ve talked about in different points on the podcast in terms of like, I think there’s a distinction between what astrologers can do with astrology versus how astrology should be used with clients. And we’ve had to develop our own systems and our own protocol for using this technique with clients over the course of the past decade and some of that’s still things that we need to teach and sort of work out more in workshops in order to share with people. You know, there may be ethical guidelines of what’s appropriate versus what’s not appropriate to say to a client within the context of teaching a technique or sharing a technique like this with a perso —

LS: Definitely.

CB: — and there might be better ways to do it or worse ways to do it.

LS: For sure.

CB: That’s a whole separate discussion, and then there’s the broader discussion about the philosophical implications and cosmological implications of a technique like this to the extent that it works —

LS: Right.

CB: — which is something where we dipped our toe in there, but I think for the sake of this, we don’t have to go too much further.

LS: Right.

CB: All right, cool. Are there any other points we need to make in terms of philosophical implications or technical things before we wrap this up?

LS: I can’t think on either of those. I mean, the main thing I think of at this point is just that it’s really exciting to be alive at this point in time, you know, because even like, what? 20 years ago, 30 years ago, this would not be possible to have this conversation.

CB: Yeah, I mean, this technique literally did not exist in Western astrology 30 years ago. It was first came into being again, it hasn’t been practiced for centuries, it came into being again in 1996 through a translation of, you know, one of my teachers, Robert Schmidt, who translated this text, the text of Vettius Valens in book four of the anthology, and Valens is the only ancient astrologer who preserved this technique. So Rhetorius mentions to it in passing, but Valens is the only one that preserved a treatment of it, so we owe a lot to… and that’s something Valens asks you to do in the anthology is to acknowledge your teachers, like Valens being one of them and Robert Schmidt being another, as well as Demetra and other people like that, in order to… you know, because we’re inheriting and reanimating a tradition of astrology and a technical tradition that’s been dead for centuries. And one of the things about this now in sharing this more publicly is I hope that people will now see why some astrologers have become so excited over the course of the past two or three decades about ancient astrology and why we can see that there’s something valuable and interesting and compelling about it that’s new and different and does represent something fresh in terms of astrology in general. And this is one of the things.

LS: Definitely, yeah, and it’s not just like, a partisan thing, like traditional versus modern, but that it can actually add to whatever practice you already have.

CB: Yeah, it can enhance something and it can do something that I honestly don’t think you could do otherwise or was being done. It presents a very fresh and different perspective, and it’s doing it sometimes with like, weird things that were like, vestigial parts of the tradition, like the lot of – the Part of Fortune which like, people would use, but clearly nobody had any idea what to do with, and it —

LS: Right.

CB: — turns out that it was part of this complex timing technique doing like, derivative houses from Fortune and zodiacal releasing from the Lot of Fortune and Spirit. And it had this whole like, history and application and usage that’s very fascinating and complicated, but hadn’t really survived intact until it was revived.

LS: Right, yeah. So it’s an exciting time to be alive and to be in the astrology field.

CB: Yeah. And that’s what I’ve been doing and that’s what I’ve been working on over the course of the past decade and a half. Most of The Astrology Podcast though, a lot of it is me interviewing other astrologers, because I’m still interested, even though I have my own types of astrology that I’m interested in and focused about and passionate about, I’m still very interested in other forms of astrology and learning and gaining from them and promoting them and sharing them with the community. And so most of the podcast has been me interviewing other astrologers and trying to see the best parts of different forms of astrology and presenting that to the audience.

But you know, lately, I realized sometimes people don’t really fully know what my own personal practice of astrology is, and it’s something I just like, teach to clients or lecture on occasionally. So part of this was, you know, unveiling another final part of that, of this technique that I’ve specialized in over the course of the past decade and a half and sharing that with everyone, and sort of completing the sequence of some of the other techniques that I’ve slowly dropped into the community and into the podcast audience over the past year or few years, like whole sign houses and sect and annual profections and all of them, which are just pieces of this larger puzzle.

LS: Definitely. And you’re also completing that sequence of some of your teachers, you know, Schmidt and Demetra and people like that, who, you know, the earlier pieces of starting to recover these techniques – you’ve actually been one of the biggest proponents, I think, in making it more understandable to the public.

CB: Yeah, and just completing what was started in the mid-1990s and the potential behind it and the excitement of everything that was happening and with the community, but that didn’t, it wasn’t fully brought to completion, and that’s been a large part of my work over the past decade is trying to bring that to completion in some way by reuniting the ancient traditions with the modern ones and reviving ancient astrology but also reviving it as part of a living tradition, and in some sense, merging it with the existing contemporary tradition of astrology in the West.

All right, well, thank you for helping me with that. I’m really glad we got to do this because I always wanted to do and thought I should do the zodiacal releasing episode, but I didn’t know how to approach it. I didn’t know if I could. I didn’t want to make the course lectures redundant. But I also didn’t have, there’s not a lot of people that specialize in zodiacal releasing, but you —

LS: Right.

CB: — are somebody who I saw over the past decade learn zodiacal releasing and become, not through like, studying my approach closely, because I don’t know if that you ever studied my full, like, lecture on the subject, but you apply it in practice and heard from me some of the ways that I applied it. And then through applying it yourself became next to anyone else that I know somebody that – or besides myself – somebody that applies zodiacal releasing the most effectively and knows the most about it compared to anyone else I know. So I’m glad we got to do it together.

LS: Yeah, thank you. Yeah. I’ve been just kind of staring at it for 10 years, so.

CB: Right. Well, not just staring at it, but also watching me and you’ll be the one that’ll tell me like, “You know, you just had that loosing of the bond” —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — “the other day.”

LS: Yeah, no, I mean, that’s what I mean by like, staring at it, and just like, noticing how it works —

CB: Right.

LS: — even on the minute level.

CB: Well, and like, watching my career and —

LS: Yeah.

CB: — telling me. Because I don’t even pay attention to my chart as much as I could. And you probably have at different stages watched my chart more than I have at different points and let me know when —

LS: Right.

CB: — I was going into some period or another.

LS: Yeah, definitely.

CB: Or noting people in the news and other stuff like that. All right, so if people want to learn more about this technique, so I’ve already talked about the different websites and programs that you can use to calculate it. So if you want to learn more about not just zodiacal releasing but Hellenistic astrology in general, then this is a good time to mention my book. It came out in 2017; it’s titled Hellenistic Astrology: The Study of Fate and Fortune. I released an ebook version on Google Books a few months ago that’s only like, $15 or something, so you can get a Google Book version or an ebook version through Google Books if you search for it. I did, though, design it to be a print book, so I would recommend reading it in print, because the layout and everything was just designed that way, and it’s a pretty big, thick book. So it deals with all of the techniques that we’ve talked about today, especially in terms of planetary condition and things like that, and the last chapter finally deals briefly with zodiacal releasing.

If you want to study more and go into more depth with zodiacal releasing itself, then I have an 18-hour lecture on it, which you can buy as a standalone lecture through my website, which is TheAstrologySchool.com. And that’s just where I’ve taken the 18-hour lecture from my full course, and I’ve made it available as a standalone lecture if you want to study that. If you – you would probably be better off studying it within the context of the full apparatus of ancient astrology which is what I present in the Hellenistic astrology course. So that’s my full main course on Hellenistic astrology where I do sect, aspect doctrine, whole sign houses, annual profections, zodiacal releasing, and pretty much the whole nine yards. So if you’re interested in that, you can find out more information about that at TheAstrologySchool.com.

Is there anything else we should mention before we call it a day, or a night, or whatever it happens —

LS: Night.

CB: — to be at this point?

LS: I do consultations that I regularly incorporate zodiacal releasing in, and website is LeisaSchaim.com.

CB: Yeah, you would definitely be one of the best person that I recommend to people at this point. Since I’ve moved on to focusing on doing the podcast and on teaching and stuff, I usually recommend or refer all my zodiacal releasing consultations to Leisa at this point. All right. I think that’s it.

LS: I think that’s it, too.

CB: All right, awesome. Well, thanks a lot for joining me today.

LS: Yeah, thank you.

CB: And thank you, everybody, for listening to or watching this episode of The Astrology Podcast. Thanks to all the patrons who support us through our page on Patreon.com. We appreciate you; we love you. Thanks for making this happen, and good luck with the technique, and we will see you again next time.