Finding the right definitions

July 29, 2009

zodiac3Now that I have finally come to the point that I can compare two theories, I find out how difficult it is to use the right words. Not that I did not know that already, (that is why I am trying to make the graphics) but still it has to be given the form of words too. The best would be to give them my own words, but that is not easy.

The biggest problem is that I might not use the ‘right words’. But then again if I do use the right words, it becomes a dictionary or a glossary. And I do not have to write that, as there are others that are far more capable of doing that. But in any way it is a good start using the right words. So to start I looked up AQAL in a special Integral glossery.

AQAL, short for all-quadrants, all-levels, which itself is short for all quadrants, all-levels, all-lines, all-states, and all-types. Developed by philosopher and author, Ken Wilber, AQAL appears to be the most comprehensive approach to reality to date. It is a supertheory or metatheory that attempts to explain how the most time-tested methodologies, and the experiences those methodologies bring forth, fit together in a coherent fashion. AQAL theory’s pragmatic correlate is a series of social practices called Integral Methodological Pluralism. The personal application of AQAL is called Integral Life Practice. AQAL is often used interchangeably with Integral Theory, the Integral approach, the Integral map, the Integral model, and Integral Operating System.

And thought to do the same for Zodiac. I use it all the time because I know myself what I mean, but lets see if it is the same as any official explanation. I found several ones and these two where closest to how I mean to use the word. The first is a more historical one which I found on Encarta.

Zodiac, imaginary belt in the celestial sphere, extending about 8° on either side of the ecliptic, the apparent path of the Sun among the stars. The width of the zodiac was determined originally so as to include the orbits of the Sun and Moon and of the five planets (Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn) that were known to the people of ancient times. The zodiac is divided into 12 sections of 30° each, which are called the signs of the zodiac. Starting with the vernal equinox and then proceeding eastward along the ecliptic, each of the divisions is named for the constellation situated within its limits in the 2nd century bc. The names of the zodiacal signs are Aries, the Ram; Taurus, the Bull; Gemini, the Twins; Cancer, the Crab; Leo, the Lion; Virgo, the Virgin; Libra, the Balance; Scorpio, the Scorpion; Sagittarius, the Archer; Capricorn, the Goat; Aquarius, the Water Bearer; and Pisces, the Fishes. Because of the precession of the equinoxes about the ecliptic, a 26,000-year cycle, the first point of Aries retrogrades about 1° in 70 years, so that the sign Aries today lies in the constellation Pisces. In about 24,000 years, when the retrogression will have completed the entire circuit of 360°, the zodiacal signs and constellations will again coincide. It is believed that the zodiacal signs originated in Mesopotamia as early as 2000 bc. The Greeks adopted the symbols from the Babylonians and passed them on to the other ancient civilizations.

And the second a more philosophical and psychological one which I found in a dictionary of symbolism.

The zodiac is an imaginary belt that divides the stars into twelve constellations, each constellation in turn represented by a symbol. According to Plato, those twelve signs are the gates of heaven; each has its own characteristics, and corresponds to its own psychological types.

Now before I go any further it might be a good thing for me to read them a few times and then come up with a definition of my own, of both AQAL and Zodiac, to use further in my posts.


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