The Hankar Crystal
By Al. H. Morrison
an astrological artifact of the
recent and not-so-recent past, from our eighth-house basement and
the best explanation available of the most notable contribution of the
often-referenced but seldom-explained, mysterious Colonel Raoul Hankar,
noticed what was really happening in the skies over the Western Front
the Great War. Explained by one of the astrological greats that knew
him, Al H.
The Astrologers' Guild of America conference of March 19, 1972,
in New York City. Interestingly, it looks at the horoscope as an
evolving, resonant crystal, akin to our wafeform approach. Originally
in the Spring-Summer 1972 issue of The
Astrological Review when I was its editor – J.T.
a Saturn cycle ago, we were founding
a technical journal, IN SEARCH, with Charles Jayne as Chairman of the
Board. We had a lively time there in his downtown studio, with much
and debate over astrological matters. One of the most interesting of
astrologers teaching there was Col. Raoul Hankar. While on duty as
officer in the French Army (1914-1918), he had noticed correlations
visible planets and events on the battlefield. Then after the war he
his system against a set of 5,000 accurate birth charts of public
greatest merit of his system is that
it provides a reliable method of judging from the horoscope of an
which characteristics are extrovert, readily visible to the beholder,
are introvert, or subjective, quite real but not strongly or directly
in behavior. It is an extensive detailed astrology, based on a
cultural value system.
French Col. Raoul
Hankar was an artillary officer in WWI, whose mathematics shaped his
I am trying to explain here is a very
small fragment of that astrology, somewhat out of context, a way of
psycho-mental phenomena, the way the native balances logic, emotion and
psychic knowledge, or as the shrink industry terms it, instinct,
behavior, or lately, genetically programmed. This measure is not
an I.Q. test, although when thoughtfully done it comes much closer to
in predicting I.Q. than many other observational efforts.
first the apparent motion of the
Moon during the date of the birth. Anything less than 13 degrees 10
"slow"; anything greater is "fast." There is quite a range
in the apparent motion of the Moon as we see it from the surface of the
For this purpose, the greater the difference from the mean motion, the
importance one attaches to the distinction, "slow" or
"fast." Where the Moon is slow in its apparent motion, the native's
perceptual capabilities are focused, or directed toward observing
native is motivated to seek, or has been conditioned to pay attention
whatever he fears. Other information is simply not perceived, not
This leaves the mind relatively lightly burdened, with a minimal input
perceived data to process.
"fast" Moon, on the other
hand, scans rapidly with a wide-open search pattern. If there is
on, anything new or unfamiliar, anything differing from expectation, it
instantly perceived. In a complex environment, as most social
there are so many details and processes to notice that the "fast"
Moon native has his mind receiving an avalanche of input, fresh data.
Mercury is located ahead of the Sun,
so that when next the Sun rises, Mercury will have risen before it as a
Star, and particularly when Mercury itself has a fairly rapid apparent
for the birth date, the mind has a direct and rapid faculty for filing,
digesting the information brought in by the senses. Learning is quick,
little need for repetition.
Observing the night skies
during bombardments, Col. Hankar evolved his concepts.
Mercury follows the Sun, being an
Evening Star still visible after the Sun has set for the day, the
the incoming information is slower, deliberate, and more complex. Data
simply filed, so to speak, but cross-referenced, tested, to see if they
to anything else in or out of the system or set being perceived. Where
apparent motion of Mercury is slower than average, this handling of
information is slower still, and more thorough.
Mercury is retrograde, a sort of
double-take is normal. Everything is considered twice. There is a
capacity to retain information in perspective, or context, and to edit
re-learn in a different scheme.
consideration of the apparent motion
of the Moon together with the placement of Mercury relative to the Sun
Marc Edmond Jones calls 'Mental Chemistry.'
Jones' formulation the combinations of
"fast" moon with Mercury behind the Sun and "slow" Moon
with Mercury ahead of the Sun are no problem. The mind is reasonably
balanced,-sufficiently challenged to make pragmatic sense of its
promote normal mental functioning.
has nothing to do with what is called
intelligence, or I.Q. I have noticed that much of what passes for high
merely a very rapid over-use of what would be mediocre or poor
paced at usually experienced rates. It's as if I have a jeep and work
to make 40 trips a day, I can haul much more freight than somebody with
Cadillac who makes a leisurely half-trip a day.
L. Edward Johndro, an engineer himself, knew Hankar and
promulgated his observations.
of Dr. Jones' good friends and
colleagues, Mathilde Shapiro, used to be fond of twirling her Phi Beta
key while explaining that she has a very slow mental chemistry: very
of Moon daily motion, Mercury behind the Sun and retrograde. Here, of
is the example of the superior mind deliberating so rapidly that a
stenographer would have difficulty keeping up with her very coherent
am something of the opposite case: Moon
making more than 13 degrees 10 minutes a day, Mercury ahead of the Sun
faster than average, in the sign next ahead of the Sun's sign, and with
planet in between Mercury and Sun. With all this working, I have no
to jump to conclusions. With me, very little gets past my perceptions,
must instantly decide once and for all whether it means anything to me,
so, what it does mean, and what I can or should do about it, if
this has to happen instantaneously. This forces the whole process into
automatic levels below such operations as logic, into what amounts to
unconscious correlation. There is no cross-reference function to
enables me to cope with the flood of
incoming perception easily, and in some ways I am hypersensitive,
more than most other people apparently do. But it also makes for poor
unless the datum has some impact, some emotional marking, I seem to
peripherally and it is quickly lost. I constantly leap to conclusions,
fairly accurate, and in constant difficulty with people who don't do
who can't imagine how I got to the decisions I've made, and the like.
try to show them, what happens is that I have to use my logical
invent specifically for them some chain of cause-effect or some
from agreed-upon facts that will justify what I knew at once without
thought. It is not funny, nor is it any sort of superiority, merely
mode of mental activity, the way a particular mind can work.
when Mercury is cazimi, actually
directly in line with us and the Sun so that a telescope would pick it
up as a
speck moving over the visible disc of the Sun, that is one condition:
energy of the Sun is focused through the planet and its energy field,
it may be, or astrologically, the drive of the ego, or the I AM force
native is transmuted to flow through his psycho/mental processes as
channel. For such an individual the animal nature is sublimated into
intellectual or abstract manifestations. It can mean genius, or
actually finds beauty in exact mathematical patterns, equations, etc.
one, with Mercury on the far side of the Sun and hidden behind it,
animal, or physical energy of the
native simply overrides whatever intellectual talents he has, so that
what he does and thinks about it later, if ever. Again, there is no
measure of I.Q. as such. Some of these Sun occulting Mercury people do
excellent mentality, high I.Q.
may find cazimi defined as merely the
inferior and superior conjunctions of Mercury with Sun, not necessarily
occulting or being occulted. In these less accurate alignments between
Mercury and the Sun, the same general characteristics are seen in the
but not to such intensity.
Col. Hankar did was to consider the
relative positions of the Moon, Mercury, Uranus and the Ascendant. Now
the birth chart must be very accurately calculated. One takes very
and the Ascendant moves rapidly, perhaps more rapidly than the
The Hankar Crystal is
formed by the relationship of the Moon, Mercury, Uranus, and Ascendant.
this purpose, any fraction of the
circle, rational or irrational, is an aspect. Likewise, as a
have added any multiple of 15 degrees of an aspect, or mathematical
of some fraction of the circle.
order to see this set of relationships
of 3 bodies and a point, I draw off a diagram separately from the chart
thus: (illustration) so that a trapezoidal figure is formed. I have
diagram: Hankar Crystal. On each of the lines is written whatever
distance there is indicated by the line. Only very rarely is the
symmetrical. I do not know that it would mean anything specific - it
have not seen enough of them to know. One of my students has a whole
full of thousands of these diagrams, for study, to search for some
between shape of the Hankar Crystal and some visible characteristic of
interpretation, one takes up the
traditional Key Words for these bodies and this point, Ascendant.
example, the fast Moon is related to the Ascendant by an exact aspect,
here, a so-called minor aspect is just as important and strong as a
major aspect, then the immediate response of the individual tends to
visible reaction. You can read his feelings in his face, his actions,
Mercury vs. the Moon
the Mercury is more exactly aspected
with the Ascendent and the Moon is not in any definite aspect, or with
an orb, then you get another native whose mind is the part that shows,
than his spontaneous impulses or emotional reactions. Any aspect of
sharpens and intensifies the action. Where the Uranus-Mercury aspect is
exact and the Uranus-Moon relation is only vague, you get a quite sharp
with a delay or unwillingness to put into immediate response what the
scanning has formulated, the man who thinks of millions of things to
who may perhaps do none of them.
Where the Mercury is not tightly bound
the Hankar Crystal, and the other things are, you may have an
dispenses with routine or logical cerebration, who functions on
physical feel-your-way sort of trial and error, or one who goes on
psychic sensitivity, according to what is most tightly connected in the
Crystal. Where the Ascendant is not closely related to any of these
have the individual who doesn't readily express overtly what is going
his mind/psyche. You are not to be unhappy if you find you have few or
aspects in your own Hankar Crystal. To have all the lines marked thus
reserved for genius, and not many of us qualify. The relative
thing which I have done with the
Hankar Crystal, which Col. Hankar did not, so far as I know, is to
this diagram. Naturally, everything in it progresses at its own varying
speeding and slowing, so that the Hankar Crystal evolves from its
through an eventually cyclic series of transformations. Thus, there
would be periods
of the life of higher intellectual creativity, other periods of
emphasis on physical expression, many phases overlapping and generating
something analogous to interference patterns or beat notes.
Hankar Crystal can be thought of as a very
sophisticated, complex Arabian Part, if you like. You can take the
Crystal as the core of the character structure, interpret it as such,
unto it one by one the other planets and the Sun, somewhat like
Christmas Tree. For example, taking Venus into account shows you
the motivation, how fluently it is aroused, what channels it finds its
expression, how to judge what the native wants.
way of looking at the Hankar
Crystal is to see it as functioning in the whole organism somewhat like
quartz and other crystals the physicists use in regulating,
controlling flow or radiation of energy. Whatever energy is put into a
comes out in a specific output related to the nature of the crystal and
structural pattern. Any stress is reflected in what the crystal is
project, as a particular frequency of radio waves, or a specific
voltage. Col. Hankar, of course, would not have accepted either of
considerations. Remember that what I have done here is to take a very
part out of a rather complete system of astrology, so that it
out of context.
Al H. Morrison, an influential and sometimes
controversial twentieth-century astrological pioneer, was president of
the Astrologer's Guild of America when this piece was first
presented. More on his many contributions here...
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