The task of verifying astrological premises using the scientific method creates a host of problems perfectly illustrated by the Mars effect controversy which is still being debated more than 25 years later. Neither Gauquelin nor his prejudices in handling his data (an accusation from the skeptics) can be considered as the 'explanation' for the Gauquelin findings, since they have been replicated independently by others.
The planetary types have endured for at least 2,000 years, from the planetary gods of Harran, through Mithraism and their domination of Renaissance astrology. Although Gauquelin's types differed in the fact that he found no Mercurial or Solar type, his scheme is virtually identical to the ancient system. It seems that the planetary types have been a tool in esoteric schools since at least the beginning of the Christian era to provide the student with a compass of impartiality with which to discover his essence and eventually transcend it.
years ago I discovered a similar scheme of types that seemed to me to
explain all the mysteries of human psychology and enabled me to devise a
truly objective test using well-defined physical characteristics. My
research into these types originally yielded successful results well above
Gauquelin's 8 - 10% above those expected by chance alone.
Gauquelin is one of the most famous and oft-quoted figures in the study of
planetary influences and is single-handedly responsible for putting the
study of planetary influence on a firm scientific foundation. Born in
Paris in 1928, he graduated in Psychology and Statistics from the Sorbonne,
and spent over twenty years studying the relationships between cosmological
What distinguishes Gauquelin from other researchers into astrology is that he repeated his studies many times over, always with similar results.
The controversy over Gauquelin's findings is a saga in itself, and is a clear example of the enormous resistance to anyone who threatens to bridge the divide between the hard sciences and what is seen as 'popular metaphysics'. Kepler, who encountered the same resistance to his laws of planetary motion expresses it best: "I have moved mountains, it is amazing how much smoke they expel."
"...belief in astrology is one thing, and its scientific demonstration, the proof that it is more than just a belief but also a reality of Nature, is another." (Michel Gauquelin (2))
Gauquelin said that his works should not be termed "astrology". The Gauquelin horoscope is only a skeleton; most of the essential elements of traditional astrology - the zodiac, the aspects, the houses - have lost their significance, and out of the ten planets used by astrologers, only five are left. It's single foundation is his experimental proof of the influence of the planets and the two main pillars are the reality of planetary types and the power of the four celestial angles. (3) According to Gauquelin the distance between traditional and neo-astrology is such that it presents its practitioners with a veritable revolution.
great minds of the Renaissance - Cardan, Paracelsus, Tycho Brahe, Kepler,
Newton - all studied astrology without discovering any laws. In the
twentieth century Gauquelin regarded it as "a Sleeping Beauty waiting
for a Prince Charming to awaken it." Gauquelin, like Kepler, is the
consummate scientist, his instrument the statistical method the only
objective way to avoid confusion between coincidences and laws. This is the
spirit of Gauquelin's unique endeavor - to chart a course between the
astrologer's faith and the scientist's skepticism.
TYPES: GLANDULAR AND PLANETARY
Dr Louis Berman, one of the pioneers of endocrinology earlier this century, after years of intensive study, developed a system of types based on glandular dominance and imbalance, declaring that "All attempts to classify human beings, ancient or modern, lack the fundamental quality that study and grouping them from the chemical point of view possesses." His studies convinced him of the fundamental importance of the glands of internal secretion as "controllers and regulators of that ensemble of forces, attitudes, habits and attitudes...known as character, individuality or personality." (4)
Gauquelin arrived at psychological profiles based on the appearance and influence of planets that had just risen over the horizon or just passed the mid-heaven at birth. He has established without doubt that the planets exert an influence on character. His results are as solid as any discovery in science, and no matter how many critics or skeptics examine his work, the purely empirical facts of his discovery will not go away. What is more interesting, however, is that Gauquelin's types are virtually identical to a scheme of types devised by Rodney Collin.
Collin made the connection between the classical types of antiquity and the types delineated by Louis Berman. He was a student of P D Ouspensky, who was himself a student of the mystic and teacher G I Gurdjieff. The study of types was a significant part of Gurdjieff's teaching, and Collin was able to verify and develop his own discovery in the concentrated atmosphere of an esoteric school.
describe the structure of the inner planets as a unity in themselves, and
their relationship to one another, Collin used the Enneagram, a symbolic
tool first introduced by Gurdjieff. When this unity is divided by seven the
result is the recurring decimal .142857. The planets are arranged on the
outside circle of the Enneagram according to the length of their periods of
Many people are combinations of types; Saturn-Mars, Mars-Jovial, Jovial-Lunar, Lunar-Venusian, a Venus-Mercury, and Mercury-Saturn. The Solar type combines with all the others, softening hard edges, magnifying sensitivity and often energizing otherwise passive qualities. Below is a very brief description of each type in it's "pure" or "classic" form, its governing planet and the gland under its influence.
THE SEVEN BASIC TYPES
Physical shape: The classic Saturn is the tallest of all types, with long bones, high, prominent cheek-bones, and high forehead. They have an upright stature with straight shoulders and strong muscles. Their habitual expression is subdued, or one of concerned concentration.
Character: Austere, Cautious, Cold, Controlled, great powers of Endurance, Impartial, Moderate, Patient, Paternal, Somber, Wise.
Classic Type: Abraham Lincoln, Peter Fonda, Greta Garbo, Vanessa Redgrave.
Type: John Wayne, J F Kennedy, Diane Sawyer, Margaret Thatcher
Physical shape: The pure Martial is small, muscular, robust and strongly built. They often have a short, thick neck on rounded but powerful shoulders and a large chest, especially Mars/Jovial. The classic Martial has a pale or freckled complexion and red hair or blonde hair and blue-eyes. Their habitual posture is challenging or defensive, and solidly grounded.
Character: Aggressive, Blunt, Bold, Competitive, Courageous, Daring, Destructive, Honest, Loud, Passionate, Rough, Strong.
Classic Type: James Cagney, Chuck Norris, Sybil Shepard, Gerri Halliwell.
Type: Nikita Kruschev, Winston Churchill, Bette Midler, Barbara Bush.
Shape: Pure Jovials have a large frame, a big waist on top of thin legs.
They have large, round heads and the men are prone to baldness. Both sexes
have poor eyesight and more Jovials wear glasses than any other type. Their
Character: Ambitious, Benevolent, Creative, Dramatic, Extravagant, Gregarious, Maternal, Proud, Refined, Vain.
Classic Type: Orson Welles, Burl Ives, Oprah Winfrey, Colleen McCullough.
Type: Prince Edward, Mahatma Gandhi, Hilary Clinton, Joanne Woodward.
Physical shape: The classic Lunar complexion is often very pale and the chin is often receding and nearly always small in proportion to the rest of the face. If on the Jovial side, the facial features are rounded, if on the Venusian side, thinner and longer. The hair is very fine, and sometimes straggly or 'mousy'. The women often have soft and rounded features, and a very feminine 'doe-eyed' beauty. The habitual posture or facial expression of the Lunar is suspicious, resistant or withdrawn.
Character: Aloof, Cool, Dark, Dependable, Eccentric, Dreamy, Instinctive, Moody, Orderly, Pessimistic, Practical, Secretive, Suspicious, Timid, Uncommunicative.
Classic Type: Woody Allen, Rowan Atkinson, Emily Dickinson, Christina Ricci.
Type: Stephen Hawking, David Byrne, Jackie Onassis, Meg Ryan.
Physical Shape: The pure Venusian has gracefully rounded, shapely or well-balanced features, with abundant and wavy hair, nearly always black or dark brown. They have a long and shapely neck, a round or oval face, appealing almond-shaped eyes and often full red lips. The Venusian can also grow quite large, and they tend towards the classic pear shape ending in thick ankles. The habitual expression is either vacant, tender or alluring.
Character: Accepting, Charming, Gracious, Indecisive, Lazy, Nurturing, Over-indulgent, Sensual, Slow, Sympathetic, Vague, Vegetative, Voluptuous.
Classic Type: Marlon Brando, Jackie Gleason, Neve Campbell, Mama Cass.
Type: Jack Nicholson, Elvis Presley, Maria Callas, Elizabeth Taylor.
Physical shape: The classic Mercurial type is short, wiry, compact and trim like a sports car. The hair is medium-fair or dark, the face is angular, often with a long or pointed chin. They are tidy and fastidious and it shows in their grooming; the men nearly always opt for goatee beards and thin moustaches. Their habitual expression is playful, searching or calculating.
Character: Agile, Boastful, Critical, Dexterous, Fast, Fastidious, Fickle, Impatient, Intellectual, Manipulative, Perceptive, Restless, Talkative, Volatile, Witty.
Classic Type: Jim Carrey, Billy Crystal, Fran Drescher, Holly Hunter.
Type: David Copperfield, Chris Isaak, Cher, Germaine Greer.
Physical shape: When studying Solars it must be remembered that their qualities are often overlaid on those of other types, but if you are fortunate enough to meet a pure Solar, you will not forget them easily. The classic type is small, thin and ‘waif-like', with a light, supple, child-like body, with a slender waist, and little body hair. They are distinctly androgynous with transparent, 'milk and roses' skin, delicate features and delicate health. Their habitual posture or expression is wide-eyed and innocent.
Character: Child-like, Creative, Excitable, Gullible, Imaginative, Naive, Over-sensitive, 'Sunny'.
Type: Prince, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Drew Barrymore.
of a certain type means that our dominant essential characteristics are the
result of the endocrine hormones broadcast in our bloodstream. The glands,
tuned to a particular planet, and stimulated by its appearance either rising
or culminating at our birth, or making the appropriate angles to these
points, immediately begin to influence how the body will grow. The
These same hormones that directed bodily growth and development, in a higher octave represent our subjective psychology. They determine our attitudes, affinities with the outside world, talents and weaknesses, our whole way of seeing the world. Our essence, our quintessential character, is the composition of the chemicals in our bloodstream at any given moment.
Inspired by Gauquelin's methodical approach, I wanted to carry out my own investigations. Although I could not hope to achieve anything on the same grand scale, I believed I could satisfy myself there was a definite planetary effect, and at the same time perhaps discover a few more laws of celestial influence. My approach was to be slightly different than Gauquelin's. Whereas his studies were based on psychological profiles, I had the advantage of being able to base mine on the easily identifiable physical characteristics of each type, which seemed a much more solid criterion. (for a large gallery of photographs of good subjects for each type see: http://bodytypes.homestead.com)
of the giants of Renaissance science, Johannes Kepler, is most well-known
for his famous laws of planetary motion. But as we all know Kepler was also
a keen astrologer, and was careful to "separate the precious stones
from the dung" in astrological lore. The 'precious stones' were the
planets and the angles they made to each other and to the two strongest
I proceeded to collect nearly 600 horoscopes of well-known individuals along with photographs of each. My sources were largely already published horoscopes and internet data bases. My aim was to determine their body types and see where the planets fell. If someone was, for instance, a Mars/Jovial, I would look for either of these planets making angles to the ascendant or MC.
Originally I used Gauquelin's criteria of 'zones of intensity'. Approximately 65% showed planets in the required positions. Although extremely pleased with the result, there were elements of Gauquelin's studies that bothered me. People with no planets in strong zones still displayed strong characteristics of each type, and some were even better 'specimens' than those who had them in a key zone. Remembering Kepler's conviction that the angles to the ASC and MC played a key role, I decided to use these as the determining factors. The results were much higher. Very often planets that make 60°, 90° and 120° angles to the ASC and MC also appear in Gauquelin's zones. The higher figures included those points making angles outside them.
For reasons yet unknown the sun's aspects did not produce any result for the solar type. Because the sun is a star and not a planet the type also is of a different order of creation, and where the influence of the sun may play its role is not as obvious as with the other 'planetary' types. So I tried another hypothesis; that the Solar type is influenced by increased emanations of the Sun, so naturally I turned to the sun-spot cycle. The results were both interesting and perplexing. I found that the three solar types I considered to be the most classic types - Michael Jackson, Prince, and Madonna - were born in 1958, a year that recorded the highest sun-spot activity ever. This was more than a coincidence, yet there were few other significant or obvious correlations between the births of solar types and this cycle of solar activity. For the time being at least this type is not suitable for testing using the same methods as the planetary types.
TEST STATISTICS: FIRST SAMPLE
The planets that relate to type are naturally not the only ones that appear in the chart; they appear consistently and most frequently in the charts of those designated as a particular type. Of a total of 299 charts, 261, or 87%, contained the planets relating to type. Within that total, the charts of composite types totaled 182, and of those, 76, or 42% contained both planets relating to type. The results using Gauquelin's zones was 187 of 299 or 62.5%.
Of the total of 574 charts of famous people I managed to identify half by type. First of all I obtained the figures for random distribution of the planets appearing at the angles to the ASC and MC using the 289 charts of those whose types I had been unable to determine and found that there were 890 appearances of planets at each of the sensitive points. I then recorded the appearance of each planet:
Saturn 166 times, Mars 140 times, Jupiter 139 times, Moon 150 times, Venus 141 times, Mercury 154 times. Out of the total of planets aspecting the ASC or MC, the figures were hovering about the expected 16% due to chance.
For the 299 chosen as types I recorded the individual results of finding the appropriate planet/s in the chart:
28 out of 41, or 68%
The second sample comprised a total of 33 friends and acquaintances of which 31 contained the appropriate planet. 17 of these were composite types and 7 contained both planets. This time I had the advantage of observing behaviour and mannerisms which supplied much more information about body type than the large sample.
photographs is perhaps the least reliable source of information about body
type. Only the most obvious specimens of each type are recognizable by
photograph alone. Many people simply do not fit into these well-defined
physical parameters. Not all of us look like Grace Kelly or Abraham Lincoln.
Body type then becomes a study of subtle mannerisms and unconscious habits,
proclaiming loudly the planetary energy, for those with eyes to see.)
my third test I enlisted the aid of the National Council of Geocosmic
Research in the US. Two members agreed to send me photos of 43 subjects,
whose type I would identify and send them the planets I expected to find in
the charts. They then sent the results by Email. Of a total of 44 subjects I
was able to identify 42 as types, from which I predicted 29, or 69.5%
original results were very promising; in fact, they were a little too good.
I was suspicious that my ignorance of statistical methods was responsible
for such good results. I contacted Kenneth Irving, who has done considerable
work with Gauquelin's findings, who pointed out the flaws in my simple
calculations but also hinted that there may yet be something there to
discover given the proper protocols. I have tried to attract the interest of
someone with the necessary knowledge to take the research further and have
had some expressions of interest. At the time of writing an interested party
is reviewing the data with the aim of refining the tests. They may have to
undergo considerable review but in my opinion they hold great promise for
concrete results that could firmly establish a new science of celestial
OUR PLANETARY 'NATURE'
Kepler's own description of the degree of control of the planets over human nature firmly establishes a person's character but has no power to predict individual events; on the one hand determining the fixed nature, but leaving the destiny of the individual as a natural outcome of the behavior of their 'type'. The stars do not compel or override free will, nor decide the fate of the individual, but they impress upon the soul a special character:
"...in the first igniting of his life...he receives a character and pattern of all the constellations of the heavens which he retains until he enters his grave. This character afterwards leaves noticeable traces on the formation of the countenance and remaining shape of the body, as well as business affairs, manners and gestures...by his behaviour produces corresponding fortune." (5)
Kepler had a deep conviction that astrology - like astronomy - needed to be reformulated "in order to become a true scientific doctrine". (6) Much of Pythagorean philosophy is based on the concept of balance between two extremes. Somewhere between the objectivity of science and the intuition of harmony lies the beginning of a true science. I invite any other willing pioneers to join me in many more exciting discoveries to come.
"Thus, from the Harmony of the Spheres to chaos - after a long detour - astrology, purified, understood and accepted for itself, will at last find its place among the great laws of Nature, as the first law." (7)
by Anthony Craig - All Rights Reserved