The Planets and Their Psychological Meaning

Bruno & Louise Huber 2006 315pp

Reviewed by Richard Llewellyn Dip API

This book from the Huber 'stable' is one of the most recent ones to be translated into English and published by HopeWell.  It is a book which goes deeply into the psychological meaning of each planet and how this affects our personal development.

The essence of this book lies in its ability to demonstrate in an understandable way how personal evolution takes place through the planets.
It is not a 'cook book' in which you can look up the meaning of, say, one planet aspecting another. Instead it is more like a tool box, a DIY kit or even a jigsaw puzzle. All the pieces needed for an in-depth interpretation are available here to guide us on our own personal journey, and to help each of us to create not just a two dimensional personality but, more importantly, a three dimensional one.

In this book the Hubers look at all dimensions of the development of the personality from the instinctive and impulsive behaviour of early childhood to the integration of the personality and the transcendence of ego. When we are born we lack any conscious understanding of who we are or how to behave. As we grow older we begin to act with greater conscious awareness through what we are taught as well as by observing the effect our behaviour has on those people around us. As the years go by and we gain in self-awareness we recognise ways in which we have adapted our behaviour to suit the expectations of those people upon whom we relied for our survival. This gives us the opportunity to develop into autonomous, selfactualised human beings and the strength of this book lies partly in the fact that it shows how we can deal with each stage of the growth process and move from one stage to the next.

Much of the Hubers' work was influenced by their association with Roberto Assagioli at his Psychosynthesis Institute in Florence as well the time they both spent establishing the Arcane School in Geneva. So in addition to dealing with the realities of everyday life as affected by the planets in the natal chart, there is a strong spiritual dimension to their work. In this book the Hubers' show how self-awareness and transformation can be achieved through an understanding of the planets.

Each planet is discussed in detail from the Tool planets ( Mercury, Venus, Mars & Jupiter) through the Ego planets (Saturn, Moon & Sun) to the Transpersonal planets (Uranus, Neptune & Pluto) and the book shows how each one functions at different levels of consciousness. There are three levels of growth from the 'Asleep' stage where the planetary energy runs us, through the 'Awakening' stage where we begin to understand how this can inhibit us, to the 'Awake' stage where we can make use of planetary energies in an enlightened way. And it's usually some kind of life crisis that awakes us to the fact that the level at which we are living life no longer serve us very well.

The ways in which the tool planets will function will depend to a great extent on our ego awareness, the ego structure being not unlike the management level of the personality, consisting of Mind (Sun), Feelings (Moon) and Physical (Saturn) the part of the personality concerned with structure and reality. So development of the ego plays a major part in the development of the personality as a whole and it is these three planets which are explored in a very comprehensive manner in this book. Because of this it is possible only to illustrate this process of development very briefly.

If we take one example and look at the planet Saturn which has to do with survival and our physical needs we can see that at the first level we are ruled by survival needs with no awareness of any spiritual values. We are trapped by dependence, inertia and the fear of taking any risks. We only realise how stuck we are when we encounter a crisis of loss which shows us the fragility of existence at this basic level. So we begin to break the bounds which have held us captive and we move on the Second level and begin to search for a different meaning to life.

There are many uncertainties and fears at this stage and we are likely to encounter another crisis which often ends by letting go of many things which have held us back, be this a job, a relationship, or anything else which we feel has inhibited our autonomy. And this takes us on to the next level where we learn to take responsibility for ourselves and develop a sense of reality about our life. At this stage we discover a different aspect of Saturn and can value this planet as friend rather than something to be feared.

When we have been through these stages of development at the Physical, Emotional and the Mental level and we are living our lives in a fully conscious way then we have achieved a state of integration of the personality. But that is not the end of the story because the book shows us that there are more stages of evolution to be gone through in order to transform the personality still further. We find that we can let go of our ego needs and experience the trans-personal level where we are able to work for the needs of humanity rather than satisfying only personal needs.

At this stage in the book Louise Huber introduces the esoteric work of Alice Bailey and explains the Initiations which we need to go through to achieve transformation of each of the ego planets from the personal to the trans-personal level.

Needless to say the ease or difficulties which we are likely to encounter in our endeavours to achieve this ultimate goal are many and varied and will depend on the make up of the natal chart. Such as the strengths and weaknesses, etc, as shown by Sign and House strengths of the planets, as well as the way in which each is aspected. So the next section in this book looks in detail at the ego planets in particular and the placing of Sun and Saturn in every House and the Moon in every Sign and shows how these positions will influence the process of transformation which has been previously described. The Hubers define a very clear energy curve in each house going from outwardly very strong at the cusp to a Low Point where the emphasis is more on inward reflection before building up to the next cusp. In interpreting the motivation of each of the ego planets this house energy dynamic is taken into account.

At times this book seems to betray its probable origin as a set of separate articles pieced together. However, for me this in no way detracted from the merit of the book and the value of the material therein. It is a very readable book, written in a manner that is totally inclusive and is therefore a 'Must' for all astrologers and not just for those working with the Hubers approach. Planets appear in every chart and this book shows how we can use them to find out where we've got to in our own life journey and, if we so choose, what we can do to move on to the next level.