`The magic wedlock of planetary symbols`

Italian version

In mathematics, a point is equidistant (or equally distant) from two other points when it is the same distance away from them. In the astrological scenario, an equidistant point (midpoint) is obtained from the arithmetic mean of the ecliptic longitudes of two planets. The general formula for finding the midpoint is:

Longitude planet 1 + longitude Planet 2/2.

For example, if Mars is at 0° Taurus and Venus at 0° Pisces, we have:

30° (Mars) + 330° (Venus) = 360° / 2 = 180° = 0° Libra.

That is the farthest point from the two planets; the other midpoint, opposite 180 ° to the first, is at 0° Aries.

## History

In the work by Guido Bonatti [1] Liber Astronomiae, there are indications of the midpoints applied to a natal time correction technique to predict the outcome of the campaigns of the Count of Montefeltro. The noble defeated the enemy but was wounded in the fight, just as foretold. But we find a more systematic use of them in Martin Pegius, a 16th-century Slovenian lawyer and astrologer. In more recent times, Alan Leo [2] has used the midpoints together with the directions of the solar arc [3].

With Alfred Witte [4] and the Hamburg School of Astrology (also known as Uranian Astrology), midpoints were framed in an astrological system renewed on the premises, using a 90° graph instead of the usual 360° of the traditional zodiac. Reinhold Ebertin’s Cosmobiology originated from the same current [5]; however, Ebertin eliminated the use of trans-Neptunian planets while maintaining the Hamburg School’s theoretical structure and midpoints.

## Methods

Beyond the specific uses described above, midpoints also find application in traditional interpretative astrology. A midpoint becomes a sensitive place with which the planets – but also the Moon, the Ascendant and Midheaven – can interact, both in the natal configurations and for transiting or progressed planets. In composite or synastry themes, one can still read the aspect between the planet of one subject and the midpoint in the chart of a second subject. The aspects considered significant between planets and midpoints are conjunction, opposition and square; some astrologers take into account the minor aspects of semi-square (45 °) and sesqui-square (135 °).

This is the conventional notation to indicate the conjunction of a planet, in this case, Mercury, with the midpoint of two other planets, Saturn and Pluto.

But the equal sign can designate any aspect with the midpoint.

This is a midpoint tree, which shows us the aspects of the Sun with the chart’s midpoints.

It is easier to use a program that generates both the type of tree shown (the aspects of planets with midpoints) and the list of all midpoints, considering the large number of them in a chart.

## Interpretation

The interpretation requires a work of thinning in the choice of midpoints to be privileged for the chart analysis, considering the high number of aspects on the midpoints, and let’s not forget that there are also the traditional aspects. Here are some non-binding but common-sense rules:

1. Consider only the midpoint closest to the planets from which it originates and not the opposite point at 180°. Most astrologers rate the far midpoint as much more nuanced in its action than its counterpart. Furthermore, one avoids over-interpretation. Only in one case, when two planets are in exact opposition, they can both be evaluated (because the two midpoints are equidistant).
2. Give preference to midpoints formed by planets already in the Ptolemaic aspect.
3. Some consider only the conjunction of planets and angles (ASC and MC) at the midpoints, not the other aspects (opposition and square).
4. Others limit themselves to assuming only the midpoints formed by the Sun and the Moon to examine the vital potentials and by Venus and Mars for affective matters. In reality, a period of study and practice is needed to understand the midpoints towards which we experience a greater symbolic resonance. It is a very subtle interpretation that requires experimentation and intuition; otherwise, one risks being flooded with unnecessary details.
5. Maintain an orb of 1°.

We can express the meaning of midpoints as the filiation of two planets; their symbolism is thus integrated to form the right balance of both factors. It is like the creation from scratch of a zodiacal place that acts as a potential to unfold alternative ways of dealing with existence, a sort of “next level” of experience, as children are for a couple. In this sense, if used with forecasting techniques, it almost assumes a “prophetic” value. It can suggest details to face the setbacks of one’s evolutionary path in a renewed way.

Giving an overview of the meanings of the different midpoints would be limiting; there would be the risk of replicating, at least in part, the symbolism of the planets at stake. It is much better to use an experimental approach by examining the transits of the luminaries over the midpoints of the birth chart. The passages of the Sun can offer an idea of ​​how the joint symbolism of the two planets contributes to manifesting turning points in the House hosting the midpoint. With the transits of the Moon, much faster and therefore difficult to focus on, we can devote ourselves to the analysis of mood swings caused by daily events, a way to direct our emotional reactions profitably. All this does not exclude the attempts of reading with midpoints of other planets.

It is necessary to consider the midpoints as attempts to read an alternative symbolic plane to the traditional one that requires, on the part of the interpreter, a refinement of their intuitive faculties and an original approach to the issues at stake. Cautious integration of some midpoints with traditional tools can be tried or tested, but massive syncretism would only confuse.