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HERE again we may arrive at some important points by study of a concrete example. The unfortunate horoscope before us (No. 2) is that of a young woman who has been certified for asylum treatment already five times, being released at intervals on probation.

Now what has been the cause of this trouble? The Sun, the basis of the will, is in its own sign, well placed and well aspected to the Moon and Uranus. The Moon is in opposition to Mars, setting in the sixth house; but evil as this is, it need not have caused insanity. The conjunction, however, with Neptune is a sinister sign, as the Moon, the ruler, is in the twelfth house—a position I have so often found among asylum inmates. But I believe the real influences towards insanity are to be found in the mutual aspects of the planets. Saturn is joined to Mercury in the third house, ruling the “lower” mind, while Saturn is also part lord of the ninth. They are also both in square to Mars in the sixth, and also to Neptune.

The position of Mars in the map is a pretty clear indication of the form of the disease. It showed out through the passional nature, which was sensuous and subject to uncontrollable fits of passion and desire. The naturally strong will turned to obstinacy; and the constant repression of the desire nature in the routine of the asylum treatment only led to recurrent outbreaks of violence accompanied by cruelty. (The evil and repellent alliance between sensuality and cruelty is frequently met with in mental disease.)

Birth Chart Map 2
Map 2

But now let us study this map more closely. It is supposed to be that of an incurable case. Doctors and nurses have branded it as a case of congenital mania for which there is no cure. Suggestion is not helpful as there are no fixed ideas to dispel; and no ordinary treatment has availed to satisfy the cravings of the afflicted personality. But let us suppose the case illuminated by the teachings of Astrology. There is no doubt in my mind that something could have been done if people had only known what to do, and the map supplies the key for us.

It is true that the unbalance is hereditary. It came from the mother’s side; and it is true that the brain forces represented by the grievously afflicted Mercury are unstable and weak. Moreover, the passional nature might easily become abnormal. All the same, there is latent strength in the higher nature which right treatment should have called out. The splendid vibrations of Uranus aspecting both Sun and Moon have been utterly neglected, whereas some educational influences off the usual path—some scientific knowledge or pursuit—would have been extremely helpful in counteracting the lower influences. And the generosity and “bonhomie” of the character should have been encouraged, not repressed.

Through steady and interesting work (she was an excellent worker) in a bright and healthy environment, the good vibrations from Uranus in the fifth house would have yielded up some wholesome and saving experiences of joy. I am not saying that the outbreaks of insanity which were “brought over” in her Karma could have been prevented. But I do protest against the fatalistic view that nothing could have helped her to work off the afflictions, because here in her horoscope are clearly influences which could have been used for help. Now it may be feared that it is too late to do much with her, and this is where the asylum system, even at its best in the more enlightened mental hospitals, breaks down. Humane it tries to be; effective in some cases of ACUTE insanity it often is; but it has elements of degradation, and is felt by the patients to be fundamentally at enmity with joy. So this poor child will probably go all through her life as the sport of those elemental passions which nobody has taught her how to control, or, more properly, how to transmute. But let me insist again that they MIGHT have been transmuted, and that in nearly every horoscope of a mentally afflicted patient counter influences working for health can be—astrologically—discerned. Surely it is for the science of the future to find and work with them.

NOTE.—An interesting statement has lately (December, 1920) been made by Mr. Sanger, of the County Council Asylums Committee, to the effect that in his experience “patients kept at home, IF PROPERLY TREATED, recover more quickly than those in hospital.” This is another indication of a changing point of view.

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