AstroSignatures in the Gauquelin Data Revealed
Copyright © 2007 All Rights Reserved
by David Cochrane
WHAT EXPLORATORY RESEARCH AND ASSUMPTIONLESS RESEARCH ARE AND WHY THEY ARE IMPORTANT:
Exploratory research is research designed to reveal what astrological influences occur in a particular set of charts. Exploratory research is extremely powerful is one of the most important research tools available to astrologers. Unfortunately this method is not utilized as extensively as it should be. Hopefully, this paper will inspire astrologers to use the powerful exploratory research tools that are available in order to develop hypotheses that have promise of being validated in a research study.
At this point in time there is no completely convincing replicated research studies in astrology that have validated any astrological hypothesis. There are varying opinions among astrologers as to whether astrological research will ever validate astrological theory, and astrological research is a difficult and painstaking undertaking. I believe that any hope of validating astrological principles in research is likely to involve considerable exploratory research before an actual research study that validates astrology and can be replicated is developed.
In this article I describe how exploratory research can be conducted, and the results obtained on painters, scientists, musicians, and actors in the Gauquelin database. The exploratory research conducted was successful in isolating a group of related astrological factors that occurred in these charts, and these factors are consistent with astrological theory.
Note that discovering astrological influences in a set of charts is not a scientific validation of astrology. The findings of exploratory research can be used to make a hypothesis that can be tested in a research study. The data used in the research study must, of course, be different from the data used in the exploratory research.
Assumptionless research is a kind of exploratory research where very few assumptions are made at the outset as to what kind of influences may exist in charts. For example, in the research described below the assumption is that angular distances between planets may be important and that aspects can be grouped together as having a similar influence if they share the same denominator (such as the 1/8 (semisquare) and 3/8 (sesquiquadrate) aspets). No other a priori assumption as to what is expected is employed until the results of the assumptionless research are gathered and summarized and ready to be evaluated.
EXPLORATORY RESEARCH OF ASPECTS:
The most commonly used astrological influences are aspects, zodiac sign placements, and house placements. Rulerships, exaltations, and other ways of relating these influences to each other are also often used. Combinations of planets in midpoint structures, and other ways of looking at how astronomical phenomena correlate with behavior on earth are also utilized by astrologers.
In the study below I have focused on aspects between the planets.
The Kepler 7.0 program was used to do this study: For 55 charts of painters in the Kepler database I selected a distribution of angles between Venus and Mars, as shown below.
The graph shown above shows the total number of charts with Venus and Mars in 180 totals, from 0 to 179 degrees, where "0" is 0 to 1 degree, "1" is 1 to 2 degrees, etc. up to "179" for 179 to 180 degrees.
The results shown above show one of the requirements for exploratory research: a large number of charts! With only 55 charts, there is not enough data to see how the distribution of angles from 0 to 180 degrees.
Viewing the aspects as harmonics does not require as much data as viewing aspects as angular distances. A harmonic is simply all aspects that have the same denominator. For example, the 1/10, 2/10, 3/10, 4/10, and 5/10 aspects are 10th harmonic aspects and they are multiples of 36 degrees. Only the 1/10 and 3/10 aspect do not reduce down to also be a lower harmonic.
Despite the limited number of charts used on this study, viewing the aspect angles as harmonics is very interesting. These list of aspects are shown below.
In the graph above the disribution of angles for transiting planets from 1850 to 1950 is also displayed in a blue color. This serves as a kind of control group to see what the random distribution of harmonic is. All blue bars are approximately the same height, showing that the random occurrence of harmonics of Venus and Mars are fairly evenly distributed across all harmonics.
The graph above shows that among the lowest harmonics, the 5th, 7th, 10th, 14th, and 15th harmonics occur more often than other harmonics. With only 55 charts being analyzed however, these can easily be random fluctuations. Nevertheless, the results are very interesting to me because I associate the 5th harmonic with creativity, and I associate the 7th harmonic with discipline, inner focus, and interest in abstract or ancient subjects. Art is creative so the strong 5th and 10th harmonics is particularlay interesting to me. Harmonic astrology is a system of astrological interpretation developed by John Addey. Harmonic astrology is based on wave theory and Addey presents a comprehensive theoretical framework and also impressive research evidence to support harmonic astrology. In the 1970's I used Addey's ideas as well as other ideas in my astrological consultation practice, and most of my ideas build upon the initial concepts and framework for harmonic astrology that Addey developed. In this research study I use exploratory research methods to see if harmonics between particular pairs of planets can discriminate between the various professional groups with statistical significance.
ASTROSIGNATURE FOR VISUAL ARTS
Building an AstroSignature:
Shown below are the results of running this astroSignature for the 55 painters used in the study. The average score is 0.27273
In my research I look for minimum differences in average scores of at least 10% when large numbers of charts are involved. The fewer the number of charts studied, the wider the fluctuation in average scores can be. In this case, there are over 1,000 painter and over 1,000 scientists in the data so a minimum difference of only 10% is of interest. Keep in mind that the Gauquelin effect for the diurnal placement of planets is one of the most powerful supports for the validity of astrology and the magnitude of the effect is very small. We do not need huge effects to have a finding that is potentially very powerful. A statistical analysis however using a T test shows that the scores for the Gauquelin painters and Gauquelin scientists is not statistically significant at the 0.05 level.
CONSISTENCY OF RESULTS:
Consistency of Results and Agreement with Astrological Theory
In my own astrological work, if I see 5th harmonic aspects between Venus, Mars, and Neptune, I expect artistic talent and inclination. Therefore, the study is based on ideas that agree with astrological concepts (at least the concepts that I use, although not necessarily that of other astrologers). Because the 5th, 10th, and 15th harmonics are regarded as similar according to harmonic theory and all of these harmonics are used between 3 planets, a consistent application of harmonic theory has been used. I used 16 degree orbs (in the harmonic chart, which in actuality is an orb of 16 divided by the harmonic, or slightly over 1 1/2 degrees, for example, for the 10th harmonic, i.e. 16 divided by 10.
Discovery Using Exploratory Research
Exploratory Research of Painters, Musicians, Actors, and Scientists.
Exploratory research involves creative thinking, observation, and reflection on the information presented. Even with information neatly assembled and presented, this process is still time-consuming. I conduct research only as a secondary interest. Universities conduct research with the assistance of a large budget. Astrologers usually conduct research in our spare time with no funding. Few of us can afford to work full time at research as a researcher funded by a research grant does. All researchers must be practical and work with the resources available.
I set the orb for harmonic aspects to be 16 degrees in the harmonic chart, which means the actual orb in the chart is 16 divided by the harmonic.
Graph of Mercury-Saturn harmonics:
Below the graph is a list of the number of times each harmonic occurred. The 1st harmonic occurred 383 times, much more than 357 but notice that the blue bar for the 1st harmonic is very high also, showing that the first harmonic occurs more often by chance than other harmonics. The blue bars show the distribution of harmonic from 1850 to 1950, which are very approximately the range of dates of the peole in the database.Notice that among the first 45 harmonics, the 28th and 35th harmonics extend far above the other scores. By scrolling down the list of scores a value of 364 for the 28th harmonic and 355 for the 35th harmonic is found. Because our cutoff point is 357 we include only the 28th harmonic in the list of harmonics that are 10% or more above the average.
Graph for Sun-Saturn harmonics:
The Kepler program, which is the software that I used to conduct this study allows me to adjust the relative height of the blue lines to the red line and I adjust them so that the peaks of the tallest red lines above the blue lines is conspicuous. By scrolling through the values below the graphs we find that the following harmonics occur 10% or more above expectation: 13, 14, 28, and 31. The 28th harmonic appears as one of the 4 highest scoring harmonics, the same harmonic that appears for Mercury-Saturn, and this is also a harmonic that appeared to be strong in a previous pilot study on mathematicians that I conducted. The Sun-Saturn 7th harmonic is also above average but is less than 10% above the average score so it is not included in our summary of frequently occurring harmonics.
LIST OF HARMONICS:
Shown below is a list of all harmonics that occurred more than 10% more than would be expected by average. An average score that is 10% above the expected average score for 1,528 painters is 149 (149.4), for 1,294 musicians is 127 (126.52), for 1,458 actors is 143 (142.56), and for 3,646 scientists is 357 (356.51). I looked at harmonics up to 45. The number 45 is somewhat arbitrary and happens to be how many harmonics appear on one line of the graphic report that I was looking at. In a few cases the control group values were not evenly distributed, most notably the first harmonic for some planetary pairs occurred frequently by chance, and harmonics for Jupiter-Saturn, a slow moving pair, were not as evenly distributed as other planetary pairs. The harmonics that occurred at least 10% more than would be expected by chance are:
Scientists Painters Musicians Actors
Number in bold red above are harmonics that appear to be occurring consistently. I strive to develop a hypothesis that use a consistent set of rules. A consistent set of rules is the use of similar planets and the same harmonics.
Given below are hypotheses for these 4 professions that use fairly consistent rules:
Scientists: Sun-Sat, Mer-Sat, and Mar-Sat in harmonics 14 or 28
These AstroSignatures use the same harmonics for all planetary pairs. There is also some consistency in the selection of planets: Saturn is involved in all pairs for scientists and painters. Saturn or Neptune is involved in all pairs for musicians and all pairs except one have Sun or Venus. All pairs for actors have Sun or Saturn involved.
It is also important that the hypothesis is consistent with astrological theory. I chose the particular planetary pairs shown above because in past research it appeared to me that the Sun is particularly important in determining propensities in careers. I was sometimes surprised to see certain aspects occurring frequently to the Sun in a particular vocation, but this seemed to occur frequently. Exploratory research is a step towards greater control and less bias in observations than in anecdotal evidence but one still makes observations and remains open-minded and observant, without being too narrowly focused and rigorous. Therefore, I cannot quantify these observations but I have noticed the importance of the Sun.
HARMONICS FOUND IN PILOT STUDY OF MATHEMATICIANS:
The 14th and 28th harmonics were found in a pilot study I conducted on mathematicians several years earlier. This pilot study on mathematicians also found that harmonics 7, 21, and 49 were important not only with Mercury-Saturn but also with Mercury-Mars, Mercury-Uranus, and Mercury-Pluto combinations.
EXPLORATORY RESEARCH ON GAUQUELIN DATA:
The current exploratory research on the Gauquelin data also obtained a similar, but not identical result, of 2 of these harmonics, the 14th and 28th only, being important also with Mercury-Saturn but also with Sun-Saturn and Mars-Saturn. This similar, but not identical, result, inclines me to think that Mercury and Saturn in 14th and 28th harmonics may be the most important of all of these combinations because these are the only aspects that are supported in both studies, and also astrological theory would suggest that Mercury and Saturn may be the most relevant combination of planets for scientific and mathematical thinking.
The 10th, 20th, and 40th harmonics are 5-based harmonics of creativity and play (from anecdotal evidence and study). The painters in the Gauquelin study are notable painters and I suspect that most of them are notable for their creative expression, not just for technical ability. Technical ability is a function more of 7th based harmonics, and creativity and expressiveness are functions of 5-based harmonics. I would not necessarily have expected specifically Sun, Moon, Venus, and Mars in aspect to Saturn in these 5-based harmonics, but it is in reasonable agreement with theoretical expectations. I also expected 7-based harmonics to be prominent in the charts of painters because painting is a quiet, disciplined, solitary activity and, in fact, there are a large numbe of 7-based harmonics: Sun-Saturn in harmonics 7 and 21, Jup-Sat in harmonics 21 and 42, Ven-Nep in harmonics 14 and 28, and Sun-Nep in harmonic 14. We could include Sun-Nep and Ven-Nep in the 14th harmonic and perhaps also the 28th harmonic, for example, in our hypothetical AstroSignature for painters, but I felt the consistency of the effect was not very strong in that the Sun-Saturn involved two different 7-bsaed harmonics and only the 14th harmonic is shared by two pairs, so I left it out.
I had not anticipated the emphasis on 11th, 22nd, and 44th harmonics in the charts of musicians, but the finding is consistent with the hypothetical influence that I have ascribed to the 11th harmonic from ancecdotal evidence: a strong need for fulfillment, and Uranian, dynamic and unstable energy that is in constant motion. Music is a dynamic, moving art form. I would not expect people with strong 11-based harmonics to sit quietly and contemplatively for many hours painting, unless in some way the activity in some subtle way releases the needy dynamic inclinations of the 11th harmonic. Playing a musical instrument or singing are more obvious ways for the restless energy of the 11th harmonic to become productively enaged. Because the 11th harmonic seems to have a strong quality of yearning and the emphasis on musical expression of flowing and seeking emotional expression, release, or fulfillment, the association of 11th harmonic does seem fitting.
The emphasis of 17th and 34th harmonics in the charts of actors was also not anticipated, and this result may shed some light on the nature of the astrological influence of 17-based harmonics. The anecdotal evidence that I have gathered regarding the 17th and 19th harmonics has not been as conclusive as the lower prime number harmonics.
Exploratory research is a small, but important, progressive step from anecdotal evidence. Most problems of selective perception, complexities of extraneous variables and complexities such as how we attract certain people, are mostly eliminated. However, we must still be cautious and realize that random fluctuations can occur, and I am not yet ready to draw more definitive conclusions regarding the 17th harmonic, and I am not as confident that the 17th harmonic aspects will appear more often in another group of actors. I am more confident about the other conclusions because previous pilots studies and anecdotal evidence more strongly support the results found.
Exploratory research, like anecdotal evidence, involves subjective evaluations and assessments that are not always based on clearly measurable results, and the conclusions I have drawn are largely influenced by subjective evaluations based on previous anecdotal evidence as well as the results of this research.
Further Refinement of Astrological Theory Can Require a Massive Database
I think that the vast majority of astrologers would agree with me that the influences in the astology chart operate through the interaction and integration of a great many factors. The complex ways in which our environement and our decisions weave the tapestry of our lives, in combination with the impact of the astrological influences, is very difficult to break down into simple testable statements. In the research described above, combinations of two planets are used. This is very simplistic compared to reading the story written in the astrology chart. We can only find very modest correlations using databases of a few thousand people. With databases of tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of charts it could be possible to look at, for example, harmonic patterns of 3 planets, or other kinds of combinations of 3 or more factors, or other ways in which a combination of astrological influences can combine together to create an inclination towards a particular vocation, other behavior, or trait.
Evaluating and Testing the Hypothetical AstroSignatures Dervied From Exploratory Research
Science AstroSignature for Scientists: The results of the Science AstroSignature for Scientists is shown below.
Science AstroSignature for Painters: The results of the Science AstroSignature for Painters is shown below. The average score for Painters on the Science AstroSignature is 1.67408.
Science AstroSignature for Musicians: The results of the Science AstroSignature for Musicians is shown below. The average score for Musicians on the Science AstroSignature is 1.85085.
Science AstroSignature for Actors: The results of the Science AstroSignature for Actors is shown below.
A TEST OF THE SCIENCE ASTROSIGNATURE
Here is a summary of the average AstroSignature scores for the Science AstroSignature:
A t-test comparing the AstroSignature scores ofthese groups produced these results:
Even though the score for scientists of 2.02 does not seem tremendously greater than 1.9 for actors it is statistically significant at the .05 level, which means the probability of these results occurring by chance is less than 5%.
These results are encouraging in that an earlier pilot study had also found the 14th and 28th harmonics to be important in the charts of mathematicians. We might expect that there is similarity between scientists and mathematicians because scientists generally are well educated in mathematics as well. However, the higher score for musicians and actors than for painters is surprising because the solitary, quiet, disciplined, introverted work of the painter would have been expected to correlate better with these 7-based harmonics than for musicians and actors. Therefore, I conclude that this exploratory research is moderately. but not greatly, hopeful of being replicated in future studies. Again, in exploratory research, there is an element of subjective evaluation, just as there is with anecdotal evidence. It is only when we advance our research to the level of a scientific experiment that we test a hypothesis clearly for validity or invalidity.
A Test of the Painter AstroSignature
I then produced Painter AstroSignature scores for the 4 professional groups in the Gauquelin data. Given below are the average scores for the Painter AstroSignature:
A t-test comparing the AstroSignature scores of these groups produced these results:
All 3 comparisons to painters produced statistically significant results, which confirms that painters in the Gauquelin database do have these astrological influences occurring in their charts more often than would be expected by chance. The .001 level of significance means the probability of these results occurring is less than 1 in 1,000. However, this is exploratory research, and no hypothesis was clearly stated at the outset of the research. Because a consistent AstroSignature that is reasonably in accordance with astrological theory is used, as discussed above, there is some reason to expect that this finding could be replicated with a new group of charts of painters. The fact that scientists had scores that deviated less from painters than musicians is perhaps somewhat surprising in that the creativity, play, and expressiveness of performing music is more inclined to some form of astistic expression than scientific expression from my anecdotal evidence. Therefore, the results are not completely and unequivocally supportive of a coherent astrological theory, but the results are, I think, indicative that these results might be able to also be obtained in a scientific experiment.
Note also that the Gauquelin data was obtained in a fairly unbiased manner and the data was certainly never analyzed for these influences by the Gauquelins. The parents have no way of adjusting or rounding off birth times to create a spurious result, as Geoffrey Dean has hypothesized is possible with the results for diurnal position of the planets. This is true not only for the Painter AstroSignature but all 4 AstroSignatures presented in this paper.
A Test of the Musician AstroSignature
I created the AstroSignature given earlier for Musicians in the Kepler 7 software. This AstroSignature is:
I then produced Musician AstroSignature scores for the 4 professional groups in the Gauquelin data. Given below are the average scores for the Musician AstroSignature:
A t-test comparing the AstroSignature scores of these groups produced these results:
In this case the results are much more uniform for the other 3 professional groups: scientists, painters, and actors have an average score ranging from 4.1 to 4.2 (rounded to 1 decimal), while musicians have an average score of 4.6. As with the other comparisons, the results are statistically significant. Although, as discussed above, the 11th harmonic does appear to be appropriate for being strong in the charts of musicians but I had never associated the 11th harmonic directly with an inclination to music in the past. So even though this finding is very impressive, we still need to consider that it is still possible that the result is an extremely unusual deviation from normal chance. This result, in particular, would be most interesting to follow up on in a study, and, in particular, I would expect that performers, especially of jazz, rock, or other rhythmic and free-flowing nature may especially correlate with these 11th harmonic patterns.
A Test of the Actor AstroSignature:
I created the AstroSignature given earlier for Actors in the Kepler 7 software. This AstroSignature is:
I then produced Actor AstroSignature scores for the 4 professional groups in the Gauquelin data. Given below are the average scores for the Actor AstroSignature:
A t-test comparing the AstroSignature scores of these groups produced these results:
The most important conclusion of this research is that astrological influences that correlate with success in various professions were identified! The following astrological influences analyzed as a combination of factros (AstroSignatures) were found to be statistically significant among 4 professional groups in the Gauquelin data. The AstroSignatures which correlate with statistical significance with these professions are:
Because the astrological influences discovered are reasonably consistent with astrological theory, were not tweaked or adjusted to fit the data, this research study very strongly suggests that there are some astrological principles which are valid, and some of these valid astrological influences have been clearly identified. Because this study is an exploratory study, i.e. the a very specific hypothesis was not stated prior to the collection and analysis of the data, this study does not constitute scientific validation of astrology, but it may be a stepping stone towards this end. A replication of any of the findings in this study on a new collection of charts would transform astrology from a collection of anecdotal evidence to a coherent system of ideas that can be validated, improved, and reliably applied.
The studies described in this paper demonstrate that exploratory research, given proper software and sufficient data, can produce an AstroSignature (combination of astrological factors) that:
The greater complexity of astrological analysis involved with the use of harmonic aspects implies that astrological influences operate via a vastly more complex system of relationship than is employed by the great majority of astrologers. Ptolemaic aspects, for example, did not appear in the data as particularly important.
The assumptionless research methods utilized here involved few a priori assumptions, other than the possibility of aspect patterns being significant, and given that assumption the influences that surfaced as most important are regarded as minor or insignificant by many astrologers.
The paradigm that I use for understanding astrology is that astrological influences work via a complex network of interactions. The network is so extraordinarily complex that functions almost as an intelligent system that can adapt, respond, and develop in a large number of circumstances. The network is extraordinarily resilient and every person has energies that are accessible for application to a wide variety of activities and professions. Anyone can develop a reasonable proficiency in a wide range of subjects, and can utilize clear logic, intuition, creative thinking, empathy, and a host of other qualities and talents regardless of their date and time of birth. This is possible because the complex tapestry of astrological influences provides great flexibility and adaptibility. Nevertheless, despite this great flexibility and adaptability, certain lines of development and behavior are indicated when the person can tap the unique potential that is uniquely his or hers.
This complex tapestry of energies, in combination with genetic, environmental, and possibly other influences explains how it is that twins, and also time twins, can often be very different. However, we can expect that there is a particular range of expressions so that time twins (people born at nearly the same time and in the same city or town) will share some range of similar experiences so that, for example, 100 time twins born at a particular time and place may have an inclination to a behavior or in characteristics in a dozen or so different areas. 100 time twins born at a different time and place may have an inclination to a constellation of other behaviors and traits. Further research will bear out whether this hypothesis is true.
Astrologers continue to make statements that are falsifiable, such as the statements regarding behavioral tendencies associated with various different astrological influences, and it is the responsibility of astrologers to determine whether these falsifiable statements can be confirmed by research. The studies presented in this paper demonstrate that astrological theory of a more complex and sophisticated kind may be commonly employed, does have the potential of being verified through empirical research. There is still the possiblity that astrological concepts will be scientifically validated in the future, regardless of the skepticism of both cynics of the scientific method applied to astrology both from astrologers and skeptics.
Most importantly, this paper underscores the importance of exploratory research with the use of proper software and databases for advancing the field of astrology.
In early 2008 I will be presenting another study using exploratory research that I have conducted, but which I have not finished writing down the findings and completing some minor details. In this study gold prices are analyzed and, as is similar to the findings in this paper, a consistent set of astrological rules was identified that is able to forecast gold prices with statistical significance. This is another very important step forwards for astrology and may possibly be a step for a breakthrough in astrology to a new level of sophistication, accuracy and usefulness. The fact that AstroSignatures can be found in the data and then verified to have statistical significance is an extraordinary step forward for the field of astrology and has been made possible only through the recent availability of data and software that can perform the analysis.
Considerable training is also required for the astrological researcher to master the concepts and expertise necessary to successfully conduct this kind of research. We are hoping to have sufficient time and resources to allocate to training interested persons in the future. Adequate training to become competent in this kind of research can take somewhere in the range of 25 to 75 hours, depending on the level of expertise desired, assuming the student is well-versed in astrological theory and the fundamental concepts of scientific research before participating.
Exploratory research can never be completely automated by a computer; the process of discovery requires finesse, sensitivity, and expertise to make important observations and track down potentially important information. The final step of research, a scientific experiment, does not require as much training of this nature because at this point conclusions are drawn more simply, logically, and directly from previous studies using a well-defined conceptual framework, but exploratory research requires a combination of scientific rigor and sensitive awareness and insight with a delicate and refined expertise in the methods employed.
AUTHOR: David Cochrane