the Key & 4th Fundamental

The Seven Ray Cycles

Occult Cosmology

Science of the Antahkarana & Ray Words of Power

Esoteric Astrology

Commentary on
Zodiacal Meditations

72 Faces of Man
Complete Text

The 72 Faces of Man
The Complete Sun Sign Guide
to the Path of Initiation

by Stephen D. Pugh


Determine the Stage of the Path

Stage I. Physical Man

Stage II. Emotional Man

Stage III. Mental Man

Stage IV. Man the Aspirant

Stage V. Man the Disciple

Stage VI. Man the Initiate

Summary of Assigning the Correct Stage

Decanate Stage in Relation to an Individual's Birth Date


To Table of Contents
Counsels to Each Decanate Stage

Determining the Stage of the Path

From a study of these definitions you see therefore, that during the period of the first stage or Aspect the man or woman arrives at the knowledge of the form side of life.

In the second stage they pass on to a realization of the underlying qualities which the form side of life is intended to reveal and identify themselves as souls.

Then at last they arrive at the realization of the monadic Life-purpose working out through the subjective soul qualities as they actively and creatively express themselves through the medium of the three-fold physical plane personality.

In consideration of this, our problem is to carefully distinguish between those who live below the diaphragm and those whom live above the diaphragm. In astrological terms this distinction constitutes the difference between those treading the Ordinary and the Reverse Wheels.

Those who react to the incoming energies through the lower centers will have a very different chart interpretation than the highly evolved person. Those living above the diaphragm respond in a radically different way to the incoming influences from that of ordinary or undeveloped humanity, and interpretation must be made accordingly. The direction in which the man is progressing around the zodiac establishes the major life tendencies towards the Path of Matter or the Path of Spirit. The exoteric chart concerns the form life and is based upon the Wheel as it turns from right to left, while the esoteric chart concerns the indwelling soul which is bound to the Wheel as it turns from left to right.

The dual activity of the Wheel must continually be kept in mind while considering the divisions of the decanates. A distinction must be drawn between the horoscope of the personality and the horoscope of the inner, living, conscious, thinking Individual.

In connection with an individual chart, it is the point in evolution and the direction of the Wheel that are the key factors determining the dominating decanate. Modern astrologers do not yet understand the dual activity—higher and lower—of the centers in the etheric body.

To be perfectly clear: On the Ordinary Wheel the etheric body is only a transmitter of psychic energy, galvanizing and coordinating the dense physical body, resulting in eventual mental control of the personality. Only during the Reverse Wheel period does the soul energy begin to superimpose and dominate the etheric body, producing the shift of force and of intensity to the centers above the diaphragm.

So the etheric body itself becomes the major transmitter of soul energy and not personality force.

The whole story of the creative process of the zodiac is the story of the journey of the individual human soul. Stage by stage, under law and through the experience gained by incarnation, the soul's creative life-plan becomes realized in the inner personality consciousness. Accordingly we become successively aware of our unfolding inner life-plan as each major stage upon the One Great Path is consciously realized. The comprehension of each of us depends upon where we each as individuals lay the emphasis and where we are awake and alive, and of what we are conscious.

In this specific sense I ask each of you to realize, although it is a platitude and an occult truism, that the completion of your life work entails certain steps and must be carried out according to the plan that has been given to you from out of heaven.

Your problem lies in ascertaining upon which major Aspect of the Path and upon which rung of the ladder you find yourself at this time.


We now begin our study of the evolutionary classification of the human soul into six different stages.

We enter therefore upon a brief technical consideration of how we sort people according to their evolutionary stage of development such that a definite type emerges for each decanate.

In accordance with the six-fold classification, the decanate types must be studied from the point of view of the qualities of the soul, the apparatus of response that must be used, and the nature of the mechanism of physical contact that has been constructed to function in the world.

Our consideration is the inner structure of a human being and those planetary and zodiacal factors that produce the outer appearance and quality and which condition it, thus producing the resultant personality behavior and conduct. Here we are thus specifically concerned with the activities of the forces of the decanates which, operating on the inner side, actuate the outer personalities of human beings and bring about their physical appearance in the world.

The interest of this classification, psychologically speaking, lies in our ability to recognize the historical appearance upon Earth of the six types or grades of souls at present found among us everywhere.

Above everything else, this classification is of definite practical value because it allows us to better understand the subtle world of forces in which we dwell, the means that must be employed and the technique to be followed. In this manner the path of darkness and confusion is cleared before us and we may move forward in the light of assurance.

In the last analysis, the individual must know where they stand before they can take the next needed step forward. This very recognition, in its turn, carries with it the outstanding psychological life problem and challenge.

As we consider the successive stages of the Path and the various degrees of expanding soul awareness, the significant fact that I ask you to remember is that through it all there is one steady, sequential unfoldment taking place. This brings us to the realization that the life of the soul, through the process of human incarnation, passes through each one of the six stages with a definite sense of direction, power, steadiness in growth and adaptability of form to circumstance and environment.

At each step the thread of the soul's unfolding consciousness and increased sentient awareness can be traced, gauged and charted with clarity. Reflect on this.

After due consideration we come now to the names and classification of the major stages of soul development within the human family.

Below is a fairly detailed analysis that will serve as a skeletal structure upon which to build a successful and intelligent study of the decanate types. It gives a clear synthetic picture of an individual's unfoldment and higher relations.

Obviously as the varieties of intermediate types are myriad, I have made certain generalizations because the various groupings can and do blend into and overlap each other. The drawback lies in the capacity of our intellects to separate and divide so that the whole process is regarded as proceeding in separate successive stages, whereas in reality there is paralleling activity going on, and much overlapping, fusing and interrelating of process within the allotted time cycle of each step. The whole emphasis of the entire evolutionary process of the soul is, in the last analysis, placed upon the development of conscious, intelligent awareness in the life animating the personality.

As a rule, the exact step on the Path in any one lifetime or series of lives is contingent upon the age of the soul; yet paradoxically, the soul has no age from the standpoint of time as we understand it; it is timeless and eternal.

Suffice it to say, the six technical stages warrant the most careful observation and study by the serious student of the decanates.

Quite naturally, highly evolved souls of initiate status are relatively few; souls of disciple status are becoming more frequent in appearance; souls of aspirant status are now widely distributed; souls of mental development exist in the millions; souls polarized at the emotional level are the most abundant; souls at the physical level in the modern world are also relatively rare, do not exist as pure types and have been referred to as "raw savages" or "throw backs." (POH, p.105 and EPII, p.203)

In the six-fold classification we find therefore:

Stage I. Physical Man

The soul at the first stage, is identified with the physical body that it dwells within. In other words the soul believes itself to be the physical form. The entire forces of the soul are concentrated in the physical body and the desires expressed are physical desires. This is a purely non-thinking instinctual stage and the form life apparently constitutes all there is.

Unconsciously gaining experience, the soul is totally engrossed with the processes of the results of experience. The vital, personal human being develops and grows by responding to the impacts of the environment he does not intelligently understand and is characterized by the blind process of evolutionary acquisition.

These souls are simply aware of physical plane life and sensation; they are slow, inert, inarticulate and bewildered. Having little or no sense of time they cannot be trained along any mental line and rarely demonstrate skill in any direction. Of course they can perform manual labor under direction, eat, sleep and procreate following the natural instincts and physical appetites of their animal bodies.

On the first rung of the ladder we find child-like souls with imprisoned consciousness, limited and confined for hidden purpose of defined, intelligent development within an evolving physical body. Desires are vague and inchoate being only concerned with self-preservation, self-perpetuation and economic satisfaction.

Life after life passes and slowly the ability for conscious identification increases. At this stage there is nothing present which could be called a personality. What we observe in human nature is simply a living, active physical body with its wants, needs, urges, desires and its appetites accompanied by a very slow yet steadily increasing shift of the consciousness or soul identification out of the physical world into the emotional realm.

For the Beginner upon the Way, the sacral center along with the gonads and sexual organs are the controlling factors. There is a growing tendency towards more subtle desires such as the emotional body evokes, and more subtle pleasures begin to make their appeal. An emerging desire for beauty begins to appear. The embryonic capacity to employ time somewhat intelligently begins to develop.

Stage II. Emotional Man

In the early stages of evolution when rudimentary emotional consciousness characterizes the life expression, that fragmentary aspect of the soul which indwells and informs the body and which gives the slowly emerging personality any semblance of real human consciousness which may be present, is inert, inchoate and unorganized. The soul is still predominantly governed by selfish desires and by the calls of the instinctual life. The outstanding emphasis is the solar plexus center, the pancreas gland and the stomach with associated organs.

For all practical intents and purposes these souls are as yet, devoid of intelligent or conscious mind, and are distinguished by their complete identification with the physical form activities and slow reactions to suffering, joy, pain, to the urge and satisfaction of desire and to a subconscious urge to betterment. They only know that which they feel in all relationships, that which they believe to be an ideal, but which they themselves do not mentally understand.

As a coherent force, the emotional body provides that significant essential quality which produces the myriad of moods, desires, complexes, inhibitions, feelings and character traits which create a person's peculiar psychology. From our sentient body emanates the desires, impulses, aspirations and conflicts of duality.

The vast majority of humanity who are neither good nor bad but simply unthinking, are entirely submerged in the evolutionary tide, developing the needed personality equipment. The growth, development and expression of the emotional body is accomplished through the urge or impulse to satisfy desire.

In due course of time, a shallow 'wish-life' emerges oriented towards satisfying the desires of the physical life. Obviously at this juncture, the inner soul is identified with or entrapped by those specific types and forms of desire it seeks to possess, assuage and satisfy.

Though the human soul in incarnation is still dominated by unreasoning desire most of the time and held under its sway, the field of satisfaction and the sense urges slowly become less animal and more definitely emotional. Feelings and moods come to be recognized and a dim sense of aesthetic values, desire for peace and the urge to find that nebulous thing called happiness begin to play their part.

At this stage the life-path is marked by what they demand in the way of personal comfort, luxury, beauty and that which brings them spiritual comfort in the realm of religion and religious desire. An emotional response to environing conditions leads in time to a greater intensification of the wish life and the development of the imaginative faculty.


Stage III. Mental Man

The third decan rules over and conditions the entire period of mental development and later personality integration. These souls are intelligent people, capable of mental application if trained. During the early phase of the third stage nevertheless, they are still predominantly emotional with the feeling nature almost over-developed. Oscillating between the life of the physical senses and that of the mind, their lives are spent in emotional turmoil.

Steadily however, they demonstrate increasing periods wherein the mind can momentarily control, and thus when necessary effect important life decisions. These are average people, good, well intentioned but still largely controlled by mass consciousness. They are regimented and standardized easily by orthodox religion and government because they are the unwitting 'sheep' of the human family.

The first Aspect of mental development is marked by the period wherein the lower concrete mind is built and developed. The second part of this process begins the coordination and integration of the three-fold personality unit and is marked by self-expression, self-interest and self-emphasis. The personality of the individual now begins to emerge with real clarity and becomes naturally outgoing and expressive.

At the apex of the third stage we find people with fine mental capacity. Their intellects become dominant, powerful and control eventually the emotional nature. The powers of the trained reasoning and rationalizing mind are called into activity by the soul. As the mind becomes intelligent, enquiring, intellectually sensitive and responsive to thought currents, a growing sensitivity to the impact of ideas increases with steadiness and vigor.

These people, totally materialistic, ambitious, self-referencing, effective and powerful, study and use the environment in such a manner that it contributes to personal desire, success and emergence into prominence. Through a demonstration of personal power and purpose, the world is exploited for selfish ends.

These individuals are self-determined, self-conditioned, self-aware and conscious of and responsive to their environment. A climaxing desire for material possession is reached, the peak of desire is successfully mounted and the desire for material happiness is consummated.

Persons who arrive at the acme of the third rung of the ladder constitute the elite of the human family and are the people achieving success in some department of human life. They are writers, artists, artisans, thinkers in all the many fields of human knowledge, politicians, religious leaders, philosophers, scientists, and skilled workers.

Gradually a higher sense of values supervenes; there comes a time when desire for material experience begins to fade out; newer and better values and higher standards of thought and desire begin slowly to appear. Later, when the attraction of possessing the physical forms of the natural world becomes monotonous through constant repetition over countless lives, the person begins to turn a deaf ear and an unseeing eye upon the familiar phenomenal objects in the world of desire.

There ensues a steady turning away from contact with the previously desired objects of the physical plane and an atrophying of desire in that direction. This is accompanied by a devastating sense of loss, a groping in the dark, and a period of wrestling and exploration. Life has now become a desert, arid and undesirable, and all fails to satisfy. What eventuates is the turning away from the phenomenal world, as the result of use and consequent satiety.

When the man or woman arrives at the realization of the futility and emptiness of material ambition, it marks a high stage of personality integration and precedes the Reverse Wheel period of change and marks the major shift of activity. In travail and pain the personality equipment has been forged to the point wherein one can now begin to free oneself from the Path of Illusion.

Having expanded slowly from the consciousness of material ambition through activity, one can now begin the stage of approach to the divine reality of the soul upon the mental plane. The difficult process of reorientation toward a new world, a new state of being and a new condition of awareness is begun; hence the entire response apparatus—mind, etheric body, brain and nervous system—is reoriented, and the person becomes increasingly conscious of their soul.

Having now awakened somewhat to the purpose of experience, they attempt to bring to every event an intelligent power to extract from the happenings to which they are subjected some gain to the life of the soul.

But—and here is the vital point—in order to move forward, the advanced material man or woman must first learn to regard the environment in which they find themselves as the place of purification and the field of a planned service. Naught can now hinder progress as the turning away from the kingdom of the world to the kingdom of the soul becomes an established life-pattern and an esoteric habit.


Stage IV. Man the Aspirant

It will be evident that my discussion on the six stages has necessarily been sketchy, for all that I am attempting to do here is to give in succinct form, an overview of the six major steps which mark the life-path along which the human soul must eventually pass.

In connection with the attainment of the fourth stage, the individual has now realized himself to be a soul and not just a physical body or personality. It is his principle task, when attaining the fourth rung of the ladder, to grow in the ability to see life and circumstance from the point of view of the Immortal Ego.

At this stage the soul now begins to definitely reject the form, and consequently the person through whom the soul is experiencing and expressing itself, is rejected by the world in which they live. Prone to mental difficulties and complaints which are concerned with energy and are due to the fusion process—either underway or completed—of soul and personality, the aspirant is conscious of duality, torn between the pairs of opposites, and unable to rest until fully illumined by the light of the soul.

These are the sensitive, struggling people who long for release from failure and from existence in the world. Their mind natures are exceedingly alive and active but they cannot yet control them as they should, and the higher illumination remains a joyous hope and eventual possibility.

In order to better understand the nature of discipleship, the process of stabilization and right direction, aspirants must learn to completely climb out of the depths of darkness, blindness and matter into which they have descended.

Appalled by the unknown, overwhelmed at times with the apparently empty stillness, constantly wrestling toward perfection and the light, the process of withdrawal, inwardness and material detachment is frequently difficult and dark. Focusing an intense inner concentration, it is precisely at moments such as these that the aspirant must seize the opportunity.

Right activities just beginning upon the Path of Return, include physical coordination, emotional orientation, mental direction and personality alignment. The day has come when the soul has awakened to the need of dominating the life situation and superimposing its authority.

As a consequence, building a true foundation with right aspiration and correct motivation is essential. Diligently seeking to invoke the soul, the aspirant begins to reorganize, to reorient and to rebuild their personality bodies.

Thus when this stage is reached the process of soul and personality fusion is quickened, but first the three Aspects of the personality are to be integrated into one whole, gradually controlled by the soul, and then fused into an instrument for effective world service.

To this end, the soul energy asserts its divine power and dominates the personality force, subduing its activity. This is the period of the so-called Path of Purification wherein the pairs of opposites on the physical plane, the dense and the etheric forces, must be reconciled. As time goes on and this is accomplished the aspirant is set free from the physical plane to begin the true spiritual battle with the pairs of opposites on the emotional plane.

Upon the fourth rung of the ladder the intelligent thinking person must begin to learn to serenely and sanely distinguish between the self and the not-self, soul and body, introversion and extraversion, right and wrong, good and evil, light and darkness (spiritually understood), prison and liberty, love and hate, truth and truths, knowledge and wisdom and between reality and illusion.

As the spiritual perception becomes increasingly accurate aspirants begin to stand free of deception, wrong identifications and interpretations. The objective of all endeavor is the correct building of forms in mental matter, the control of mental substance and its use in clear thinking.

This demonstrates through the organization of the outer life into creative projects, service work of some kind, the outer dharma carried out with precision while the inner adjustments proceed. When the discriminating sense has been adequately developed and they know the pairs of opposites and have gained a vision of that which is neither of them, they then pass on to the Path of Discipleship.


Stage V. Man the Disciple

The stage of discipleship is in many ways the most difficult rung of the ladder of evolution. Disciples have already realized their own spiritual problems and established conformity to the purpose of their immediate cycle and life period. They have learned to subordinate the personal dharma and ideas to the need and service of their time.

Now the disciple has to attain knowledge, strength and coordination between the personal self and the soul which will result in ability to build organized forms and groups on the physical plane and to hold them coherently together.

This step is characterized by those persons whose intelligence and love nature has become awakened and integrated. In the last analysis, this stage leads to the fusion of soul and body. Initially however, the soul comes into conflict with the personality and the great battle between the pairs of opposites begins on the emotional plane.

As the battle of the contraries is taking place consciously in the disciple's life, these individuals alternate between the high experience of the triumphant initiation through which they have recently passed and which so deeply colors the inner life, and prolonged moments wherein they are baffled and struggling with the sources of glamour, illusion and the lure of maya.

The successful disciple has established a balanced relationship between the personality and the soul and can function as either at any desired moment with equal mercurial facility. Their path leads between the pairs of opposites running straight and level, leaving the depths of personality experience as well as the heights of the soul experience on either side.

In order to bring this about upon the Way of Initiation the earnest individual becomes characterized by four principle virtues: discrimination, dispassion, discipline and decentralization. By these they seek to attain without passion, pain or suffering the distinction between the seemingly irreconcilable and contradictory dualities of life. Having already discovered and wrestled with the fact of the pairs of opposites at the fourth rung of the ladder, the task of the disciple now at the fifth is to discover that which is neither of them.

Let no-one doubt: the Path is the central intermediate way. Flashes of the intuition are familiar and become changed into the blazing and constant light of the soul, irradiating the mind, which provides the point of fusion between the personality and the soul.

Disciples understand their universal duty, have applied the rules for self-training, maintained a poised attitude to the world, have withdrawn from desire, are correctly oriented, and have through meditation demonstrated the right use of the mind, resulting in a state of complete spiritual detachment from the physical plane.

At the fifth step the disciple becomes initiate by becoming a fully soul-infused personality. Disciples, it might be stated, are not only conscious of their vehicles of expression, the integrated personality, and conscious of themselves as souls, but they know that there is no such thing as 'my soul' and 'your soul' but simply 'the Soul'. This truth is realized not only as a mental proposition or a sensed reality, but as a fact in their own subjective consciousness.

Need I therefore, write more about personality development and control? It is something that we have all considered and worked hard on for years—or should I say lifetimes—is it not? Can I tell you anything of a practical nature that you do not already know or have not striven, struggled and fought hard to attain?

I can only close my comments in connection with the fifth rung of the ladder by encouraging you to proceed with your self-appointed task of living and teaching the truth about the light of the soul as your life-opportunity warrants and offers.


Stage VI. Man the Initiate

A close study of the five previous steps will reveal that highly evolved individuals are on the verge of release from all the limitations of the physical body and the form nature.

Their goal is to dwell eternally in the consciousness of the One soul, withdrawn from identification with any aspiration of the form life, no matter how highly developed. They can and do, of course, use their physical form at will for the purposes of the general good.

The initiate has grasped the relation of the lower duality (that of the personality and the soul) and is now prepared to pass on to the higher reality, that of the integrated and fused Self (personality and soul) and its relation to the Monad or PRESENCE.

At this stage the Life Aspect takes ultimate control, absorbing into itself the personality and the soul and thus even the higher duality is overcome. It is the phase of the so-called 'mountain top' experience wherein the Life Aspect supercedes all others. Its keynotes concern liberation and divine consciousness.

The main characteristics of the highly evolved faculties of the initiate are intuitive perception, pure vision, direct knowledge and an ability to utilize the undifferentiated energies of the Universal Mind. Their spiritual consciousness is now released from all categories of awareness and all differentiations and from the final sense of selfhood, and merges itself in that sublime condition in which self-centeredness (as we know it) disappears.

The fully conscious soul ultimately appropriates the "body of light and of splendor, the expression of the glory of the One" which, when once assumed, makes all future incarnations impossible, except as an act of the sacrificial spiritual will. (EPII 332-333)

Suffice it to say, it is impossible for me to convey to you the essential truth about the sixth stage because there exists neither the terminology nor an adequate groundwork of knowledge on our part to understand. Through a process of special training and education the initiate is endowed with power over space, time, mind and matter. The omniscience and omnipotence of the higher Self are realized and these conferred gifts appear god-like to ordinary humanity. They are the bearers of the torch of Truth as they investigate all things and all beings. It is they who know what man is in his innermost nature, having drawn themselves to the very source of their being and in so doing, found that all souls are fundamentally identical with the Universal Oversoul.

* * *

Summary of Assigning the Correct Stage

Such is the program for the individual human soul. Before it there passes the kaleidoscope of the various steps and the constantly recurring dramatic spectacle of outer personality existence in the phenomenal world. Throughout all of its happenings in time and space it beholds and interprets, maintaining the attitude of the Onlooker and of the perceiving Observer.

As we close our discussion of the six stages which mark the progress of the soul from identification with form until it loses itself and its own identity in a higher identification with the Absolute One, let us realize that these fundamental demonstrations or viewpoints of consciousness occur within each Sun sign.

I would here remind you that in these successive stages we can glimpse the vision of what we are, where we are and may be. Steadily, the unfolding purpose of our own soul gains fuller and deeper control over each of us, and this at any personal cost and sacrifice, should be our steadfast goal.

Every human being falls into the category of one or other of these successive stages, the six steps to the seventh or final step—the symbolical Throne of the Lord of the Sign.

The seventh or ultimate state cannot be described but is the state of true gnosis; the blending of all of the lights or stages in one supernal radiance. Two of the very few words we can imagine which really could be applied to this designation of superhuman consciousness are enlightenment and illumination, yet the words identification and insight also find place here. The state of gnosis enables the human being to recognize the Whole of which they are a part and links them in consciousness with all the corresponding parts of the Universal Whole.

The whole story of an individual's journey round the zodiac is the story of response to, or repulsion from, applied energies at the six successive stages of the Path. Seen from the inner point of view, the main issue is the development of a conscious response to the life of the soul.

Given these basic facts, it can be seen that the six decanate forces in all the signs are ever-present, but responsiveness and sensitivity to the total range of their impact is dependent upon the nature of the response apparatus, the development of the triple physical mechanism and the unfoldment of the glandular and nervous systems. Reflect with care upon this statement.

It is the developed sensitivity that determines the difference between the highly evolved initiate and the ordinary human being of average intelligence. Ponder on these points to obtain a wider picture of the growth of soul consciousness and the goal of the decanates.

One by one the labors of the zodiac must be mastered and the initiatory task of the human soul completed. Simply stated, the task of the incarnated human soul treading round the anticlockwise Wheel is to completely subdue the physical personality and use the material side of life to make a contribution to mankind based upon selfless purpose.

In short, the initiatory goal of the evolved human being is to demonstrate the triumph and potency of the inner life of the soul over physical life on Earth. In all of the signs, when crucified upon the Common Cross and traveling clockwise on the backward moving Wheel, defeat, tragedy and failure are experienced countless times.

In each Sun sign on the Reverse Wheel, in striking contrast, the soul destiny, like that of the Sun-God Hercules, is to experience glorious spiritual triumph and victory until finally, once and for all, our taskmaster's trials are successfully negotiated and mastered.

It should now be clear to you that the Ordinary Wheel consummates the form side of life and the cycle of the Reverse Wheel consummates the soul side, so to speak. Here I have laid the foundation to enable you to distinguish esoteric from exoteric astrologers by the ability of the former to correctly place an individual upon the appropriate stage of the Path.

In this specific context, the fundamental astrological task becomes the science of integrating and blending the personality and soul energy fields with the aim in view of furthering the process of psychospiritual evolution. The psychosynthetic aspect of astrology furthers the transformation of the individual subject towards their higher levels of spiritual expression.

Casting the horoscope is an assessment of the effective conditioning energy fields and charts the growth of sentient awareness or Egoic consciousness. There is not sufficient knowledge yet among astrologers to enable them to deal with wisdom in these matters. The average astrologer is deplorably ignorant of man's inner forces, energies or mechanisms.

Each student must research and study the individual qualities of each decanate for themselves without relying on the assumptions, opinions and bias of any single astrologer no matter how informed they may appear to be. Each one of you should endeavor to arrive at a first-hand knowledge of the decanate rulers based on research, meditation, careful observation plus, of course, mature life-experience. I beg you to ponder upon the beauty and synthesis of these instructions.

Think of yourself and begin practically to determine your approximate point upon the ladder of evolution and attempt to discover to which one of the six stages of your Sun sign you resonate. Realize that you have not yet discovered all that is responsible for your phenomenal appearance.

It is essential that you begin to use your reasoning faculties and seek to justify or refute the legitimacy of the rulers you propose. The easiest way to accomplish this is to monitor and observe your life situation and self with care. Your objective is to undertake a detailed self-analysis and determine where and how the rulers should be applied. When you have developed a clear idea regarding your stage on the Path focus on a study of the decanate and its planetary ruler.

Once you are certain, it becomes important to understand the initiatory tests and challenges. Let the specific points of my astrological thesis therefore be in your minds as you study your developing powers of self-expression, self-determination and self-control. Open-mindedly grasp the fundamental purpose, role and importance of the decanates.

Upon reading this book, it is my sincere hope earnest students will begin to sum up their energy assets, tabulate the forces that control their life, and thus arrive at a reasonable and truthful understanding of the forces which require to be subordinated and those which require to be strengthened. Then in the light of true knowledge go forward upon the Path of Initiation. Theory must not persistently run ahead of your actual life-experience. Step by step you must proceed. Above all else, I implore you to apply the Initiatory Rules to your individual life situation.

When you come to study well-known contemporary historical figures examine their lives in depth and undertake an extensive analysis of their chief traits and features.

Keep in mind that human personalities generally appear uneven and quite unbalanced. A tremendous amount of overlapping takes place. It will be apparent to you, given a little careful observation, that some highly advanced types still display certain characteristic weaknesses or recessive physical, emotional or mental traits of their ruling decanate.

Do not permit yourself to make superficial or snap rulings based on personality eccentricities or mere physical appearance alone. It is possible then for example, to have a superlative inner development and at the same time, so inadequate a physical mechanism that coordination is not achievable. But the converse may be true. Let no one doubt that an individual with much less inner development but with responsive physical body and glands will be a more effective agent in the environment.

It is well to be aware of the fact that the positive and negative traits of the decanate forces overlap each other. Keep an open mind as you study, and in all cases support your placements with reasons. In time this will provide you with the necessary skills to quickly observe, recognize and blend the forces of the planetary rulers of the decanates.


Decanate Stage in Relation to an Individual's Birth Date

In the assignment of decanate rulers, the single most important point of analysis to grasp is that the theme of the decanates is highly synthetic.

In the final analysis, it is the evolutionary development of the subjective consciousness which is the determining factor of rulership, not the objective birth date. Reflect on this. In other words although they often are identical, the actual birth decanate and the true subjective ruler may not necessarily be the same. Upon first glance I know this seems contradictory and paradoxical; upon further analysis however, this is not the case. Let me attempt to explain this is simple terms. In each Sun sign there are three possible decanate choices at each one of the three major stages, or nine choices in all available to the soul during the complete cycle of personality development. When attempting to correctly place individuals upon the Wheel, these nine possible combinations will have to be taken into careful consideration.

Nine, as you should know, is the number of Initiation connoting complete physical development.

Please keep in mind that the influence of the birth decanate is not negated in those cases wherein it is not the same as the subjective ruler but is rather augmented, supplemented and enhanced.

Utilizing what is termed the 'technique of superimposition', esoteric astrologers superimpose the subjective ruler on top of the birth ruler and then the two are synthetically combined, blended and fused.

Do not forget then, the planetary ruler of your birth decanate may not necessarily be your true subjective ruler.

It will be apparent how necessary it is to go slowly in these matters so that the mental ability to reason logically may parallel the growth of the intuition and of spiritual perception. On the Reverse Wheel there are also three major stages and each one of the three tests of initiation associated with each decanate is, in itself, triple in nature once again, producing the sacred Nine.

During the course of many lifetimes, in order to completely round out the evolutionary development and coloring of the human personality, all nine combinations will be undergone on both the Ordinary and the Reverse Wheel.

Bearing all these thoughts in mind, you are now invited to embark on the study of the main classification of humanity in the twelve-fold zodiacal division and consider the specific trials and tests undergone in each decanate.

I will give you the rules for the safe and useful development of the superhuman powers of your soul. Through this study of the decanates the nature of the soul in man will be made clear and the relations between the soul, its Sun sign and its three-fold physical mechanism will be demonstrated.

The subject of the Sun signs with their decanates, as you can see, is vast and intricate, and is still in its infancy. I have indicated enough and cited sufficient reasons however, to arouse and inspire further astrological observation and to start investigation in the fields of physiognomical and psychological activity.

It will be advisable for the student to read with care my commentaries and wise to bear in mind that I do not wish acceptance of my dicta blindly. I charge you all to experiment, research and corroborate with care the six steps of each Sun sign and the decanate rulers I have laid down.


Instructions to Each Decanate Stage






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