Wilhelm von Leibniz
Philosopher, Metaphysician, Scientist and Mathematician
Robbins © 2003
1, 1646, NS, Leipzig, Germany, 6:15 PM, LMT. (Source: Ebertin’s
book on Pluto. Various other times are given elsewhere, thus, the data
is conflicting. Also, Leibniz’s father.) Died, November 14, 1716,
Sagittarius and Neptune also in Sagittarius; MC in Libra; Sun conjunct
Jupiter in Cancer; Moon square Mars conjunct Saturn in Taurus; Uranus
are forced to begin our inquiry with some degree of ambiguity. Reinhold
Ebertin gives us a time of birth at 6:15 PM, local time, in Leipzig.
Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz’s father Johann Friedrich Leibniz
entered the following notes in his family journal: “On Sunday
21 June [NS: 1 July] 1646, my son Gottfried Wilhelm is born into the
world after six in the evening, ¼ to seven, Aquarius rising.”
we have no reason to dispute the time offered by the father (i.e., 6:45
PM), that time certainly does not yield Aquarius as the Ascendant, but
rather the 20th degree of Sagittarius rather than the 14th (Ebertin’s
presumably rectified time). Not until nearly 9:18 PM (about three hours
after the Ebertin time, and some two hours and a half after the Johann
Friedrich’s diary entry) would Aquarius reach the Ascendant.
course of wisdom in this regard would be to proceed with Ebertin’s
rectified time, while paying some attention to the implications of the
later time given by Johann Friedrich Leibniz. It is far more likely
that Johann Friedrich would make a mistake regarding his son’s
Ascendant than his time of birth.
therefore, seem to have a Sagittarius Ascendant and a MC in Libra—in
both cases. The esoteric significances will hold despite the discrepancy
in proposed time, which, perhaps, can be satisfactorily resolved.
Wilhelm von Leibniz was one of the great geniuses of the modern era.
Wisdom Magazine estimated his I.Q. in the middle to high 180s. He was
a genuine polymath (to a degree by necessity), extraordinarily capable
in a diversity of areas of enquiry and application. He contributed significantly
to the fields of metaphysics, theology, philosophy, mathematics, logic,
philology, physics, geology, political theory, law, diplomacy and history.
is known especially for the discovery of the differential and integral
calculus independently of (and some say prior to) a similar discovery
by Sir Isaac Newton, and for his profound metaphysical theories, including
the theory of the Monad. He upheld a consistently demanding career as
a civil servant while, in his precious spare time, making an abundance
of noteworthy contributions to the advancement of thought in many fields.
No merely speculative thinker, he entered avidly into scientific research
and practical invention.
he had been offered an academic position in recognition of his considerable
abilities, he refused it, perhaps because of the limitations it would
have imposed upon his freedom of thought. That thought was extraordinary
in its depth and scope, and contributed significantly to the illumination
of his era.
Ray of Leibniz’s Soul
the tremendous depth, diversity and abstraction of Leibniz’s contribution
to human thought, there can be little doubt that his soul ray is the
third ray of “Abstract Intelligence”, “Active Intelligence”,
or “Creative Intelligence”. Leibniz was one of the great
kings of thought produced by the historical period known as the “Age
of Reason” or the “Enlightenment”.
philosophical mode of enquiry was predominantly Rationalism—the
rigorous use of reason in the quest for truth. Descartes and Spinoza
were also products of this movement. Rationalism was a third ray method
rather than the empiricism of the fifth ray.
all Leibniz was a philosopher—a metaphysician of the first rank.
His thought process is at once comprehensive, holistic, subtle, intricate,
ingenious and scrupulously rational (though, naturally, philosophers
make it their business to find flaws in the arguments of other philosophers,
and so Leibniz has had his fair share of detractors, most notably Voltaire
who subjected him, albeit posthumously, to devastating satire for his
dictum that God had created “the best of all possible worlds”).
Tibetan Teacher has the following to say about the third ray metaphysician:
is the ray of the abstract thinker, of the philosopher and the metaphysician,
of the man who delights in the higher mathematics but who, unless
modified by some practical ray, would hardly be troubled to keep his
accounts accurately. His imaginative faculty will be highly developed,
i.e., he can by the power of his imagination grasp the essence of
a truth; his idealism will often be strong; he is a dreamer and a
theorist, and from his wide views and great caution he sees every
side of a question equally clearly….In all walks of life he
is full of ideas, but is too impractical to carry them out.”
(EP I 204-205)
of this description was eminently true of Leibniz, except that he was
also a very practical man, a resourceful civil servant who was forced
to become “jack of all trades” in order stay in the good
graces (and employ) of his noble patrons. His delight was certainly
in philosophy and the higher mathematics, but his many duties required
that he participate in more mundane activities which could not have
been much to his liking.
his approach to his work, he give the following revealing account—showing
his third ray in conflict with the requirements of his various more
cannot be said how extraordinarily distracted I am. I dig things out
of the archives, I inspect old papers, I search for unknown manuscripts.
From these I try to throw light on the history of Brunswick. I send
and receive a great number of letters. I truly have so many new results
in mathematics, so many philosophical ideas, so many other scholarly
observations which I would not want to lose, that I often hesitate,
wavering between tasks, and feel almost like that line from Ovid:
Inopem me copia fecit .... Nevertheless, all these labors of mine,
if you exclude the historical, are almost clandestine, for you know
that at the Court something far different is sought and expected.”
Letter to Placcius, 5 September 1695 (Dutens VI.1, 59-60)
us look for astrological conduits for Leibniz’s very dominating
third ray. Of the three signs/constellations which transmit this ray,
only Cancer is tenanted, though Libra occupies the MC. In Cancer we
find the Sun conjuncted, within six degrees to Jupiter (the planet of
philosophy and broadened perspective).
Cancerian energy playing through Jupiter adds to the breadth of any
inquiry, and tends towards the consideration of entirety. Chiron, a
planetoid of ‘astute guidance’ is conjuncted to the Sun.
Leibniz was an advanced soul (though Mme. Blavatsky, correctly or incorrectly,
insists that he was not an initiate), it may be justifiable to consider
the esoteric ruler of the Sun Sign which is Neptune, placed in Sagittarius,
a sign over which Jupiter rules. This Sagittarian Neptune no doubt contributed
to the generation of his transcendent metaphysical doctrines. Neptune,
itself, (with its trident) can be reasonably related to the third ray.
H.P.B. calls it the “god of reasoning”—though, in
this case, it is probably “pure reason” which is meant.
orthodox ruler of Cancer is the Moon, which is placed in Aquarius. Aquarius
is a sign associated with universality, eclecticism and a dispersion
of interests and involvements. Aquarius is also associated with networks
and ‘webs’ of relationships. From this is might be adduced
that there is a third ray quality associated with Aquarius and this
can be argued reasonably. Aquarius is the third sign on the clockwise
wheel, and the Tibetan does relate it closely to the third ray (EA 138).
Leibniz case, his proposed Sagittarian Ascendant contributes powerfully
to the expansion of his abstract mind. In an advanced individual, the
third ray expresses through wide views and a broadened perspective.
This is also true of the manner in which Sagittarius works for the advanced
type—especially for an individual in whom the third ray is already
extremely pronounced. Although Sagittarius does not, constellationally,
express the third ray, there would, nevertheless, be a strong mutual
reinforcement between these two energies.
in Leibniz’s case, the esoteric ruler of the Ascendant, the Earth,
will be seen to be of considerable importance. The Earth (at its present
stage of development) must be considered a third ray planet—the
ray of its personality (as it is not yet a fully sacred planet). The
only way to place the Earth in a sign of the zodiac is by considering
its heliocentric position, which happens to be Capricorn, since the
Earth will always be seen, heliocentrically, in the sign opposite the
Sun. Capricorn is a most practical earth sign, and transmits the first,
third and seventh ray. In the case of disciples (and Leibniz was certainly
a disciple—though he would not have used that terminology), Capricorn
is the main transmitter of the third ray—not Cancer (his Sun Sign).
can begin to see another reason for the practicality and ‘earthiness’
of this great abstract thinker—his principal ruling planet is
in an earth sign, and this planet is trine to earthy Saturn (another
third ray planet) placed in the earth sign, Taurus, and conjunct Mars
in Taurus as well as Venus in Taurus (by “translation of light”).
well, the two other ‘Co-Ascendants’—the East Point
and the Anti-Vertex are both placed in Capricorn, making third ray Saturn
(their ruler) of importance as a subtone in the general harmony of the
pursuing conduits for the third ray, we cannot fail to mention the position
of Mercury (whose personality ray is arguably the third), placed in
the third sign of the zodiac, Gemini, at the cusp of the seventh house,
generically associated with Libra, whose ray is the third. If one were
to think of a planet which most described Leibniz’s principal
quality, that planet would have to be Mercury (or, perhaps, Jupiter
in combination with Mercury).
wrote voluminously, though by far the greater part of his writings have
not been published or translated. We can see the easy flow of thoughts
and words through the trine of Mercury to the spontaneous Moon, and
the trine of both of them to the Libran MC. (This grand trine holds
whether the MC is in the fifteenth degree of Libra or the twenty-third—actually
tightening somewhat, overall, with the later time suggested by Leibniz’s
cannot be overlooked that the grand trine, as a figure, is based upon
the number three (thus numerically resonant to the third ray), and that
air signs (as usually considered) are related to the mind, the third
principle counting from below. While at first we may have thought that
the conduits for the third ray in the proposed chart for Leibniz were
not many, further examination reveals a plentitude of possibilities
for third ray access.
Ray of the Monad
it is not possible for us to determine with accuracy the “unknown
quantity” in Leibniz’s ray constitution, he seems to have
been so supremely identified with the Principle of Intelligence, that
the third ray seems to most felicitous choice for the primary or major
ray of the monad, though subrays will qualify the life demonstration.
Because, Leibniz, of all philosophers, thought most and wrote most on
the Monad, determining its ray seems of vital importance.
contrast of Leibniz’s metaphysics with that of Spinoza
(discussed in the analysis of Spinoza’s chart) gives an important
hint. Spinoza’s (whose monadic ray may very reasonably be construed
to be the second) believed in only one universal Substance—God—with
which all entities were identical.
was thus, with latter day occultists, a true philosophical pantheist.
Leibniz, however is a ‘substantial pluralist’, believing
in an infinitude of monads, ever distinct, “created” by
God (Who is the highest of all possible Monads)—a God Who is other
than the monads He creates. Leibniz, therefore, is not an emanationist,
whereas Spinoza (though he did not use this term) might have no other
choice than to embrace all things as God, and emanatorily derived from
God, the One Substance.
Leibniz, the emphasis is upon an infinitude of distinct, immortal substances,
rather than upon the One Substance. In this emphasis, Leibniz signals
the essential presence of the third ray of Active Intelligence at the
monadic level, the quality of which is discrimination with its inevitable
result—distinction and individualism.
Ray of the Personality
is somewhat difficult to assess. Leibniz was a character so many-sided,
that a number of ray qualities seem to be demonstrating through his
Case for the Seventh Ray
was, by worldly profession, a professor of law, a counselor to royalty,
a librarian, archivist, and a civil servant. He was also, at length,
a gentleman of means. Given his flights of abstraction (rarefied in
the extreme), he was surprisingly at home in the physical world, and
had constantly to attend to mundane duties, a number of which included
genealogical research (to reinforce the claims of his royal employers
to further privileges). Genealogy, we know, is related to the seventh
ray, as are all manner of duties associated with the civil service.
was also associated for a short time with an alchemical society, and
alchemy is a seventh ray discipline. Further, he was circumspect, diplomatic
and polite both in his manner and his writings, preferring to conciliate
rather than criticize and attack. His prose is polished and his tone,
ever in good form and respectful. To stay in the good graces of his
patrons, he would need all the appropriateness and discretion characteristic
of the seventh ray.
fell out of favor with royal sponsors, Leibniz maintained his positions
and the respect of his noble employers. It is said of him that he was
an indefatigable worker. This corresponds well with one of the major
virtues of the seventh ray—especially on the personality level.
the seventh ray has a number of conduits. The Sun Sign Cancer distributes
the seventh ray, as does Jupiter (exalted in Cancer and conjunct the
Sun). Capricorn, the sign which heliocentrically holds the Earth, (the
esoteric ruler of the proposed Ascendant, Sagittarius), is the major
constellational conduit of the seventh ray during this World Period.
principal seventh ray planet, Uranus, is the esoteric ruler of the Libran
facts, notwithstanding, the personality must convincingly demonstrate
the presence of the seventh ray before we can judge it to be so.
Case Against the Seventh Ray
Leibniz however, was not a man of regular habits. He was either sedentary
at his writing desk for days at a time, or “on the road”,
energetically traveling on various commissions ordered by his sponsors.
A comment by a nobleman of the period, also gives us pause if we intend
to assign the well-groomed seventh ray to the personality.
is rare to find learned men who are clean, do not stink and have a
sense of humour.”[attributed variously to Charles Louis de Secondat
Montesquieu and to the Duchess of Orléans]
we may wonder if the third ray (which like Dr. Samuel Johnson, is “no
friend to clean linen”) was more in effect than the seventh. If
the ray of the physical-etheric body was the third, the influence of
the seventh ray upon the physical plane would be modified.
Case for the Second Ray
Leibniz’s chart we find a Sun/Jupiter conjunction (which though
somewhat wide, is effective). Both of these are second ray ‘planets’.
Jupiter is also the orthodox ruler of the Ascendant. Chiron (the second
ray Mentor) is also conjunct the Sun.
prominent, angular Mercury of the proposed chart is in a second ray
sign, Gemini. Leibniz was a great student, a collector of information.
Not only was he eclectic (a quality of the third ray) but he found something
to appreciate in a wide variety of views on a given subject, always
finding a degree of value and usefulness in apparently contradictory
approaches. He sought to unify the field of knowledge, and the word
“reconcile” was a consistent part of his thought and speech.
principal reconciliation which he sought was between Protestantism and
Catholicism, and to a lesser extent, between the different divisions
within Protestantism. This urge could speak for the presence of the
fourth ray as well as the second. His ability to be tactful and diplomatic
(avoiding argument and controversy where possible) correlate with the
second ray, and to a degree, with the seventh. His many relationships
(via correspondence) would be well-supported by this major ray of relationship
(as well as by his prominent air signs).
Case Against the Second Ray
he could be sedentary (as both those upon the second and third ray can
be) his activity level and indefatigability seem uncharacteristic of
the second ray on the personality level. As well, there is something
about the description of his appearance, which does not suggest the
second ray, but, of course, various astrological factors have to be
taken into consideration, among them the Capricornian sub-tone of his
two alternative Ascendants, as well as his dominating third ray.
was a man of medium height with a stoop, broad-shouldered but bandy-legged,
as capable of thinking for several days sitting in the same chair as
of travelling the roads of Europe summer and winter. He was an indefatigable
worker, a universal letter writer (he had more than 600 correspondents),
a patriot and cosmopolitan, a great scientist, and one of the most powerful
spirits of Western civilisation.”
Case for the Fourth Ray
ray is unquestionably present in Leibniz—at least astrologically
and, if nowhere else in the ray chart, at least as a subray of the mental
body. In the Catholic Encyclopedia we read:
a philosopher Leibniz exhibited that many-sidedness which characterized
his mental activity in general. His sympathies were broad, his convictions
were eclectic, and his aim was not so much that of the synthetic thinker
who would found a new system of philosophy, as that of a philosophic
diplomatist who would reconcile all existing systems by demonstrating
their essential harmony.”
to his philosophical system was the doctrine of “pre-existing
harmony”, by means of which he sought to explain the manner in
which God correlated the perceptions and action of all monads. The factor
of reconciliation was essential to his thinking.
the three signs which transmit the fourth ray are all powerfully represented
in his chart. Sagittarius rises; Taurus holds three planets (Saturn,
Mars and Venus—the orthodox ruler of Taurus), and Scorpio (the
most powerful of the fourth ray signs) holds Uranus, the esoteric ruler
of the Libran MC.
well the fourth ray Moon is the orthodox ruler of his Cancer Sun Sign,
and his prominent Mercury is a fourth ray planet in trine with the fourth
ray Moon. Leibniz also wrote poetry—in Latin! Perhaps it has yet
to be translated.
design of the chart can be seen as a kind of “see-saw” pattern,
the dynamics of which would express the oscillation of the fourth ray.
But from another perspective, the chart form would appear as divided
in three parts, with the majority of planets lying to the west, and
Uranus and Neptune, relatively together, and the Moon—all governing
their own areas.
in the terminology of Marc Edmund Jones, has been called the “splay
pattern”, and indicates a “creative disjunction” more
characteristic of the third ray. If the heliocentric Earth is included,
however, (as esoterically it must be), then the design is more the “seesaw”
than the “splay”.
Case Against the Fourth Ray
the fourth ray is unquestionably present, it can be doubted that the
fourth ray is the personality ray. A fourth ray personality would be
too inconsistent and full of fluctuation to carry on the type of life
Leibniz chose to lead and, indeed, was required to lead. We do not find
him to be an especially colorful character, nor dramatic. His life seems
devoid of those conflicts (sometimes followed by harmonization) which
plague the life of the usual fourth ray personality types.
following quotation on the nature of music may caution us from assigning
too quickly the fourth ray as the personality ray:
pleasure we obtain from music comes from counting, but counting unconsciously.
Music is nothing but unconscious arithmetic.” Quoted in O Sacks,
The Man who Mistook his Wife for a Hat.
is hardly the statement of a man who is moved in his soul by the beauty
of music, though it is difficult to judge accurately from one statement.
will for the moment suspend judgment concerning the personality ray.
If two rays were to be chosen, the seventh and second would be the most
likely candidates (in the opinion of the author). While Leibniz’s
many scientific interests and pursuits suggest the presence of the fifth
ray, the note of specialization which it so often sounds when qualifying
the personality was not characteristic of his eclectic approach.
is far more likely to see an individual on the seventh ray handling
a diversity of contrasting duties on the physical plane than it would
be to see the fifth ray individual doing so. The fifth ray insists upon
patient focus and seeks to limit the field for the sake of clarity.
Leibniz did not have that privilege—nor, perhaps, the predilection.
Choice of the Ray of the Lower Mind
was a many-sided, eclectic individual, and his thought life was rich
and diverse. At his stage of evolution, which one can argue was close
to the third degree, the influence of the soul ray (the third) and of
the higher or abstract mind (colored by the same ray—as all the
triadal vehicles would necessarily be) would fuse and blend with the
concrete mind, coloring it accordingly.
the at least partial presence of the fifth “Ray of Concrete Knowledge”
must be argued—perhaps as the predominant ray of the lower mind,
but at least as the subray.
was surely a scientist as well as a metaphysician, and his thought was
precise, analytical and practically inventive. He did love to “count”.
He was at home with all manner of calculation.
as we cannot imagine Sir
Isaac Newton (one of the discoverer’s of the calculus and
the formulator of an approach to the science of physics which held undisputed
sway for over two centuries) without the fifth ray in his ray formula,
so the same should be true for Leibniz—equally a mathematician
of the first rank and the co-discoverer of the calculus.
the decline of interest in metaphysics, Leibniz is today remembered
even more for his contributions to science than to philosophy and metaphysics
(his deeper callings), but his scientific work was significant. It is
perhaps not realized that Leibniz contributed much to the science of
geology, and proposed that the Earth, at some stage of its development,
must necessarily have been in a molten state. According to the Encyclopedia
worked on hydraulic presses, windmills, lamps, submarines, clocks,
and a wide variety of mechanical devices; he devised a means of perfecting
carriages and experimented with phosphorus. He also developed a water
pump run by windmills, which ameliorated the exploitation of the mines
of the Harz Mountains, and he worked in these mines as an engineer
frequently from 1680 to 1685.”
are all clearly pursuits necessitating a prominent fifth ray.
following is a notable fifth ray statement, surprising coming from one
who was so much conditioned by the third ray:
prefer, a Leeuwenhoek who tells me what he sees to a Cartesian who
tells me what he thinks.”
was named a foreign member by the French Academy of Sciences in 1700,
and in that same year, with the help of royal patronage, he engineered
the founding of the German Academy of Sciences (of which he became the
two of the three signs transmitting the fifth ray are powerful —
Sagittarius, his Ascendant, and Aquarius, the sign in which his Moon
is placed. As well, the North Node is placed in fifth ray Leo and the
South, of course, in fifth ray Aquarius.
we find Uranus, opposing Saturn, Mars and fifth ray Venus. Uranus, Saturn
and Mars can, all of them, be reasonably associated with the fifth ray
— Saturn as ruler of the concrete mind, Mars as the ruler of the
five senses and the material sciences, and Uranus as the ruler of orthodox
this grouping of four planets offer conduits for the fifth ray. This
opposition takes places between the fifth and eleventh houses, which
are resonant to Leo and Aquarius—two signs distributing the fifth
lower mind, however, seems to carry a certain fourth ray quality as
well, for he was fluid and diplomatic in his writings, and rather more
interested in the commonalties between philosophies than in their differences.
A mind colored, at least in part by the fourth ray, would be an excellent
instrument of reconciliation both in philosophy and theology. One area
to which the reconciling fourth ray was applied was to create a bridge
between mind and matter, spanning the gulf created by Cartesian philosophy.
prominence of Mercury (a planet resonant, justifiably, with the fourth,
third and fifth rays) would give great diversity to his lower mind,
making it possible for him to use, skillfully, any of these rays in
his thought process. A study of his writings demonstrates, however,
very little use of the first ray in the mind. For the most part his
writings do not transmit the quality of simple assertion, as we might
expect to find when the first ray colors the lower mind; rather, his
writings are logically reasoned and eminently reasonable, polished,
remembers that the Tibetan has said that a combination of the third
and fifth rays makes one a “master of the pen”. This was
true in the case of Leibniz. The “bridging” quality is,
however, noticeably present, and hence the probable presence of the
bridging, reconciling fourth ray of harmony. Harmony was such a dominating
thought in his philosophical system; without recourse to the doctrine
of “pre-existent harmony” Leibniz could not have created
Ray of the Emotional Nature
was one of those who had conquered his passions. Emotion did not interfere
with the clarity of thought, and so the second ray may well have been
conditioning the astral nature. His sympathies were broad. For a pronouncedly
third ray type, he was not critical. Sagittarius, however, is the primary
sixth ray sign, and its orthodox ruler, Jupiter, is placed in the water
sign, Cancer, ruled by sixth ray Neptune.
Neptune is found is sixth ray Sagittarius—a very idealistic position.
So Leibniz certainly had access to the sixth ray if he chose. His level
of activity suggests a certain drivenness characteristic of that ray,
and on more than one occasion he was called upon to write patriotic
tracts for political purposes.
feels that he could do almost anything by design. He had no great sympathy
for Louis XIV,
and on one occasion wrote a “violent” pamphlet against that
king and his policies. One suspects, however, a kind of ‘violence-by-design’—simply
because his duties required a violent pamphlet. Such a passionate approach
was uncharacteristic of his usual writings.
Ray of the Physical Nature
from his activity level, his constant travels, his diverse and incessant
occupations and preoccupations, his ability to endure long hours of
labor without fatigue—even the fact that he often slept in his
chair and resumed writing as soon as he awoke—all these point
to the presence of the third ray etheric-physical body. The third ray
conduits have already been described and may be applied to the manner
in which that ray could reach the physical nature—astrologically.
Astrological Features of Leibniz’s Chart
Leibniz Sun Sign is Cancer. Exoterically, we find him working
for royal households and having many duties concerned with the upholding
of the status and image of the household. Cancer is a sign of protection,
and he was certainly was under the protectorship of his royal patrons.
a pragmatic perspective, we find three planets, and asteroid and Chiron
in the seventh house, the house of the law. Leibniz received a doctor
of law degree in 1666, and was utilized as a diplomat and political
advisor. He thought and wrote extensively in the fields of law and politics.
especially with a powerful third ray emphasis, represents, in this case,
a deep interest in history. Exoterically, Leibniz’s duties required
creating and managing libraries (collecting many old books), supervising
archives, researching the records of the past to justify the political
and property claims of his patrons. Esoterically, he was fascinated
with the history of the Earth (geologically considered) and with the
racial, ethnic, social and political development of the human race.
Still more deeply, he sought to understand history from a sacred perspective,
never losing sight of the interdependence of all factors within a whole.
His universal history was never written but his original perspectives
served as a stimulus to other thinkers. In relation to this historical
approach we find the mantram “The Whole is Seen as One”
eclecticism (under a highly stimulated Mercury in Gemini) was remarkable,
but he never lost sight of the whole context in which all disparate
factors had their proper place and function. We find Cancer promoting
universality of mind.
influence of the sign Cancer is also noteworthy when considering one
of his foremost doctrines—the existence of an infinitude of individual
“substances” known as Monads. These monads exist insulated
from one another, each in its own world and incapable of interactivity
with other monads. The notable insularity of the monad is a Cancerian
have no windows, through which anything could enter or leave. Accidents
cannot be separated from substances or go about outside of them, as
the sensible species of the Scholastics used to do. Thus neither substance
nor accident can enter a monad from without.” Monadology, sec.
is a remarkable doctrine with unforeseen metaphysical consequences.
Jupiter is conjunct the Sun and also in Cancer. That Jupiter
is exalted in this position (and is, as well, the exoteric ruler of
the Sagittarian Ascendant) further promotes his desire to grasp and
understand wholes. We should note that Jupiter
is placed in the Scorpio decanate of Cancer, and so this Scorpionic
coloring (conferring added psychological intensity and a willingness
to go deeply into matters, as well as registering physically in his
physiognomy) is a significant qualitative strand to his character.
The sign placement and decanate placement within that sign of a ruling
planet is usually influential as regards both character and appearance.
in advanced persons, is a philosophical planet representing a philosophical,
speculative sign, Sagittarius. Philosophy is, literally, the “love
of wisdom”. We have a strong second ray conjunction here, contributing
to Leibniz desire for a completed, rounded-out perspective. This conjunction
certainly contributes to the second ray component of his nature.
is also a planet of protection, placed in a protective sign. This position
is one of those factors which contributed to Leibniz’s conviction
of the benevolence of God and of the infallibility of Divine Providence.
In his writings, he strikes a high tone of morality and piety—the
gifts of Jupiter. Moreover, he is renowned (and ridiculed) for his philosophical
optimism, also a Jupiterian quality.
Practical Saturn, working through a sign of materiality, Taurus, is
closely sextile Jupiter, conferring a much needed strand of
earthy realism to his hopeful, Jupiterian nature. Leibniz, beset by
unavoidable mundane duties, would have considered himself a realist
about the world, despite his essentially sanguine view. Depending upon
which chart is used, Saturn is operating from the fifth or perhaps late
fourth house. Saturn in Taurus works for the acquisition (Taurus) of
knowledge (Taurus), and in the fifth house related to one’s inner
talents, forces the individual to use in a practical manner all the
accumulations of the causal body.
Jupiter, the orthodoxly ruling planet of the Sagittarius Ascendant,
is conjunct the collection of stars knows as “Castor”.
Castor is linked to writers, and speaks of a creativity which flows
easily and relatively devoid of struggle. Leibniz had a remarkably fluid
pen, and was able to write with ease on all manner of subjects. Jupiter
and Castor together promoted these abilities, and contributed to the
sheer volume (Jupiter) of his output.
Chiron is closely conjunct Sun. Although this planet has only
recently been discovered, its influence has certainly been present in
our planetary system. Chiron is closely connected to the Sagittarian
Rising Sign, just as is Jupiter.
Chiron represents many things, but mentorship and advisorship are significant
in Leibniz’s case. With all tact and diplomacy, his function was
to be a voice of influence in the lives and affairs of his patrons,
and to steer them into channels of intelligent and useful action—for
the sake of their household and in relation to the welfare of the larger
socio-political context. Of this, Leibniz was eminently capable, and
he practiced it constantly.
is closely connected with guidance and a sense of direction. It also
represents the individual who is notably self-directing. Leibniz had
two agendas—the agenda of necessity (required by his position
as civil servant) and the agenda of illumination. His was one of the
most brilliant minds of Europe, and he certainly knew what he wanted
to accomplish in his spare time.
The Sun is conjunct both Canopus and Sirius (interestingly,
as in the case of the Dalai
Lama—but the major ray is different). Leibniz lived during
the “Age of Reason” as it prepared the way for what has
been known as the “Enlightenment”. Many regard him as the
foremost thinker of the late seventeenth and early eighteenth century.
The influence of these two luminous stars (the most visually luminous
from the perspective of Earth) certainly contributed to the enlightening
effect of his thought.
The Sagittarian Ascendant (whether in the Aries decanate or
early into the Leo decanate) spurred Leibniz on in his persistent search
for understanding and a vision of reality. Three planets in Taurus (the
sign of the “Greatest Light”) also assisted. Under the Sagittarian
Ascendant, Leibniz was on a great quest for truth. This quest took him
into extraordinarily diverse areas of inquiry (augmented by Mercury
in Gemini), but, above all, it led him into the realm of metaphysics
and theology. The essence of his philosophy is based upon sight—the
major Sagittarian theme. Perception and apperception (for Leibniz, apperception
is self-perception) hold the key to the nature of the primary substance—the
monad. All the monad can really do is perceive or apperceive, sharpening
its registration of reality until it sees clearly exactly what it is
and what place it holds in the God-created universe.
the Monadology, the influences of Sagittarius and Cancer are readily
seen. The monad is insular (Cancer) and sheltered from (Cancer) the
external impact of all other monads. Within the monad’s individual
world, its one action is perception/apperception (Sagittarius) by means
of which the totality of Creation is registered as a “representation”
of ever-increasing accuracy.
also believed that he could demonstrate the ordering of all nature towards
a final goal or cause. The energy of the sign Sagittarius is prominent
in this thought.
Pallas Athene rising, in both the earlier and later chart,
speaks to the resourcefulness and strategy which were constantly required
in Gemini at the seventh house cusp, trine the Moon and
MC is for Leibniz a profoundly important placement. Leibniz was an inveterate
letter-writer. His correspondence was truly voluminous and his correspondents
numbered over 600. One can only imagine the situation had he had access
to today’s computer technology. His correspondence was his way
of staying in touch with the best minds in Europe. With some correspondents
he carried on a lengthy dialogue, looking deeply into the metaphysical
(and mathematical) questions which concerned him most.. Several of these
extended exchanges are books in themselves, and admirably reveal the
subtlety, finesse and scope of his reasoning.
so many third ray individuals, Leibniz was most alive on the plane of
mind and the physical plane. It would seem that the life of the emotions
required less attention. (For this reason, third and fifth ray types
more easily pass the second initiation with its emphasis upon emotional
of the considerable energy he invested in the process of meaningful
correspondence can be seen by the sextile and semi-sextile configuration
between Mercury and Jupiter, and the midpoint of the Saturn/Mars conjunction.
Corresponding was a kind of compulsive duty—both an enjoyment
(Jupiter) and a burden (Mars/Saturn). He met the world as an intelligent,
communicative mind, and the field of energy which he most influenced
was the mental field.
The asteroid Vesta in also in Gemini in the seventh house,
and speaks to the intensity of his commitment to the process of exchanging
thought. Although for much of his life physically isolated in Hanover,
through his relentless correspondence (Mars semi-sextile Mercury), he
became an intellectual presence throughout Europe.
Uranus is opposed Mars/Venus, involving Saturn by translation
of light. The opposition of transformative Uranus to two planets which
so often express as the relation between the sexes may indicate the
transmutation of sexual energy into creative mentality in the search
for light. Both Mars and Uranus are associated with the sacral center,
and Venus (when in relation to Taurus) with sex. Saturn, of course,
is a restraining and disciplining energy.
in Taurus (the orthodox ruler of the Libran MC) represents the quest
for light. In this case, it appears that Venus is the master of Mars,
which is also subdued by is conjunction with Saturn. Mars in Taurus
represents a considerable amount of instinctual power, placed (because
of is position between Venus and Saturn) at the disposal of the higher
represents the throat center in disciples; Venus is the ruler of Taurus
which is always associated with the throat; for more advanced disciples,
the seventh ray (distributed by Uranus) rules the throat center. One
can see in this configuration, the transfer of sacral energies to the
throat center, thus releasing a great deal of energy for personal creativity
of the kind indicated by the fifth house. Such creativity need not always
be artistic in the usual sense.
the age of fifty, Leibniz proposed marriage to a woman, who said she
needed time to contemplate her decision. While she was contemplating,
he thought better on the idea, and was, apparently, never bothered by
the matrimonial urge again. It is said, however, that Leibniz had the
highest respect for women and, especially, for their mental abilities.
Uranus/Mars opposition can be difficult to handle, as can an opposition
of Uranus to Saturn or Venus. As stated, this opposition has much to
do with the transmutation of energy from the sacral center (and in general
from sub-diaphragmatic areas) to the throat. It would also give a high
level tension to the life, and incline towards abruptness within the
field of personal relations represented orthodoxly by Mars and Venus.
Probably these tendencies were moderated by the diplomatic Leibniz,
and the effect of this opposition was used to intensify his labors.
We find transformational Uranus square to the Moon
in Aquarius. Really, there is a kind of T-Square with the
Moon on the short leg and the opposition between Uranus and the three
planets—Saturn, Mars and Venus, representing the long arm of the
T-Square. The Moon in Aquarius in the second house reveals the diversity
of pursuits at which Leibniz had to labor to bring sufficient resources.
He had to use all his ingenuity (Uranus) and simple hard labor (Saturn/Mars)
as well as charm, and presumably, a well-spoken manner (so evident in
The Moon is the “prison of the soul”. In this case
it contributed to a diffusion of energies which may have prevented the
consolidation of his gains, making it necessary for others to gather
up many threads of his life and present them favorably to the world.
Moon, however, is also a point of transformation, and if we consider
the planet which it veils, it is certainly scientific, innovative Uranus.
Leibniz was always forced to use the ‘materials and hand’
to advance his ends. This position contributes to his resourcefulness.
Uranus, transposed to this house of wisdom, light and prana (the second
house), contributed to the ability to transform all materials into usefulness.
the chart in this way, we have a trine between Moon-as-Uranus, Mercury
and the MC which is esoterically ruled by natal Uranus. The second house
is the “occult treasury” where the contents of the causal
body are represented, and Uranus is the planet of genius (square to
its own natal position, if it is substituted for the Moon).
his personality did have strong elements of the seventh ray, this second
house position would be one of the important places of application.
He surely earned his living using the planet Uranus—a genius in
a mundane setting, having to do all manner of things which geniuses
usually do not do. We can also think of this position as indicating
one who comes forth with a new form of enlightenment, to which his novel
metaphysical theories attest. Leibniz’s Monadology is to this
day strikingly original and fresh.
Neptune is in the twelfth house opposed to Pluto. Though diligently
rational in his approach to metaphysical thought, one cannot help but
suspect the presence of deep almost mystical intuitions underlying the
tightly reasoned metaphysical systems which Leibniz proposed.
in Sagittarius is the visionary mystic, the transcendentalist, seeking
a vision of sublime heights beyond the earthly sphere. The twelfth house
is a house of psychism and sensitivity. The position of Neptune here
promotes the functioning of the intuition and promotes the essential
idealism and pan-psychism of Leibniz philosophy .
dramatic interplay between faith and reason which exercised so many
of his contemporaries, was vividly alive in his thought process. Mercury
(in relation to the other air signs) represents his rationality, offered
voluminously to the world. Any sincere reader of his work will, however,
quickly encounter the depth of faith, hope and optimism by which he
the opposition between Mercury
in Gemini and Neptune in Sagittarius is too wide to be judged effective
under normal circumstances, it is an important polarity in the dynamics
of his chart. Neptune is easily pulled into the opposition because of
its wide conjunction with the earlier of the Sagittarian Ascendants.
Leibniz had a most impressive dream—a “philosophical dream”.
It will be offered below, and the reader will see how the great Sagittarian
quest for transcendental truth (Neptune) was foundational to his psychological
Lion, Isis and Morya are among the hypothesized, yet undiscovered
planets. Astrologers, as well as some mathematicians and astronomers
believe they are ‘there’, but no unquestionably reliable
orbits have yet been determined, because no true sightings have been
achieved. However, those who study their effects in charts, judge them
to be relatively well-located and effective even with circular rather
than elliptical orbital elements.
extremely remote planet Lion (with a period of approximately 1600 years)
is conjunct with Leibniz’s Sun in Cancer within a little more
than a degree. In principle, aspects with these undiscovered or unseen
planets must be quite close (though in practice it may not always be
so). In any case, 1º22’ is close enough. Lion (according
to the astrologer Niklas Nihlen)
represents all that distinguishes.
is closely associated with civilization, culture and refinement. Leibniz
(it would seem) is at work within the Department of Civilization, under
the Mahachohan. Further, it has much to do with learning, libraries,
books, history and education. Leibniz was hired as a librarian and archivist
and he was constantly surrounded by books (another hint for the prominence
of the second ray energy).
undiscovered planet Isis (there is also an asteroid called Isis) is
even more closely conjunct the Sun. Nihlen writes of Isis as follows:
New, Freshness, Pioneering, Trail-blazing, Aspiration, Unveiling,
Seeing through the veils, Incandescent light, Reality, Restlessness,…”
can see Leibniz, ever driven by divine discontent, blazing trails in
the field of thought, unveiling that which obscures the truth.
planet Morya is closely conjunct Leibniz’s all important Mercury
in Gemini. Morya is a planet of power, emphasizing essence, being, purpose,
and will. As a metaphysician Leibniz sought for the fundamental substance,
essential being—in short, the monad. His thought was also powerful,
impressive, a force with which to reckon.
The “Uranian” (or Trans-Neptunian) planets Kronos,
Admetus, Hades, Cupido, Zeus, Transpluto are also prominent—some
of them in the chart for the earlier time and some for the later.
the planet of eminence, superiority, prestige, and “high places”
is within a few degrees of the MC is both charts, and speaks of the
influence with royalty, nobility and those positioned authoritatively
played in Leibniz’s life.
which represents rotary resistance and repetitive tasks, would only
be effective in the later chart. Certainly, there was much in Leibniz’s
career which called for repetitive actions—those which inhibited
his sense of arriving at his own self-selected goals.
is quite close to his Mercury, and would involve him with old books,
antiques, and, in general, promote a respect for antiquity.
(a planet of union, amity, empathy, identification and reconciliation)
would be exactly conjunct his Part of Fortune in the earlier chart.
This position fits well with his desire to unite Catholicism and Protestantism,
and, in general, to be a unitive thinker and an agent of reconciliation
in the world of thought.
would closely conjoin the Ascendant of the earlier chart, and Zeus the
Ascendant of the later. Transpluto has to do with the sudden release
of transformative energy and Zeus with great control and with mechanism.
Both would contribute to the high tension under which he undoubtedly
worked, and Zeus to his experiments with various kinds of machinery.
and their Ray and Astrological Correlations
us review a few of the principal thoughts which characterized Leibniz’s
approach to philosophical thought, seeking to determine the ray and
astrological constituents which contributed to the formulation of this
The Doctrine of the Monads: Leibniz believed in an infinitude
of essential, simple substances called monads. Monads, each characterized
by a greater or lesser degrees of perception (relatively developed monads,
for instance, human monads, possessing apperception or self-perception),
are harmoniously related by the will of God, are indivisible and devoid
(or that which stands beneath—‘sub-stance’) is defined
in terms of action. To be is to act. The action of the monad is not
to act upon an external world, but to represent or reflect the entirety
of the world (the infinite aggregation of other monads) with ever-increasing
degrees of clarity and accuracy.
basic ontological thesis, appearing in a letter to de Volder, is as
matters accurately, it must be said that there is nothing in things
except simple substances, and, in them, nothing but perception and
appetite. Moreover, matter and motion are not so much substances or
things as they are the phenomena of percipient beings, the reality
of which is located in the harmony of each percipient with itself
(with respect to different times) and with other percipients.”
state of a created monad is a causal consequence of its preceding state,
and each individual substance (or monad) is the cause of its own (internal)
states. External or inter-substantial causality is impossible; intra-substantial
causality governs the monad.
to the Oxford Companion two principle theses lie at the heart of Leibniz’s
the thesis that each created monad perceives every other monad with
varying levels of distinctness; (2) the thesis that God so programmed
the monads at creation that, although none causally interacts with
any other, each has the perceptions we would expect it to have, were
they to interact, and each has the perceptions we would expect it
to have, were there extended material objects that are perceived.
The first is the thesis of universal expression; the second, the thesis
of the pre-established harmony”.
we can see the importance of the sign Sagittarius in this doctrine.
All true beings (“actual existents” or monads), are principally
“percipients”—perceivers. Their principal function
is sight and appetite.
two mantrams of Sagittarius
apply here. The first mantram emphasizes sight: “I see the goal.
I reach the goal. Then I see another”. The second mantram emphasizes
appetite: “Let food be sought”. “Food” here
symbolizes that which fulfills any desire.
following excerpt from Monadologie emphasizes the importance of perception
and perspective in relation to the dynamics of monads:
through the infinite multitude of simple substances, it is as if there
were so many different universes, which nevertheless are only perspectives
on a single universe, according to the different point of view of
each monad.” (sec. 147)
third ray is also powerfully emphasized, as reality is defined both
in terms of perception/cognition and action—the two major qualities
of the third ray.
doctrine of intra-substantial causality rather than inter-substantial
causality is, as stated, promoted by the insular energy of Cancer.
The Doctrine of Pre-Existent Harmony: “The soul follows
its own laws, and the body has its laws. They are fitted to each other
in virtue of the pre-established harmony among all substances, since
they are all representations of one and the same universe.” (Monadologie,
activity of the monad is immanent activity (occurring intra-substantially,
within the monad itself). The essential action of substance is “representation”
(universal perception at greater and lesser degrees of clarity and accuracy).
monad is causally independent of every other monad, and represents the
universe of monads independently of the influence of other monads. But
if each monad is its own world, and proceeds with its activity as if
within its own world, some (divinely) masterful correlation of monadic
process would be needed if a monad is to faithfully (rather than chaotically)
represent that which is occurring in or with respect to the other monads
which it perceives.
this correlation does not occur, each monad will remain forever deluded
concerning the true activities of the universe and the other members
of the universe. For in a way, the monad is forever in its own world,
‘blind’ to the actual presence of other monads and incapable
of registering the impacts of other monads.
then, will faithfully reveal the condition of those other monads if
not the intervention of a God Who arranges that the revelation occur?
all practical purposes, according to Leibniz’s view, no monad
actually ‘sees’ another monad, for this sight would be a
kind of interaction with or communication from another monad, and would
be causal in the life of the monad which ‘saw’. Instead,
God, must arrange it so that the infinitude of other, ‘unseen’
monads (with whom no real or direct interaction is possible) are “represented”
within the perception of any given monad—and represented accurately.
Each monad thus keeps distinctly to its own world, aware of an infinitude
of other monads but not registering them directly.
Doctrine of Pre-Established Harmony is explained in the following manner:
so programmed the monads at creation that, although none causally
interacts with any other, each has the perceptions we would expect
it to have, were they to interact, and each has the perceptions we
would expect it to have, were there extended material objects that
of the Doctrine of Pre-Established Harmony
concept of Pre-Established Harmony sounds innocuous enough, but it is
a difficult concept which seems to fly in the face of common sense.
From the Catholic Encyclopedia we read:
must, therefore, conceive that God at the beginning of creation so arranged
things that the changes in one monad correspond perfectly to those in
the other monads which belong to its system. In the case of the soul
and body, for instance, neither has a real influence on the other: but,
just as two clocks may be so perfectly constructed and so accurately
adjusted that, though independent of each other, they keep exactly the
same time, so it is arranged that the monads of the body put forth their
activity in such a way that to each physical activity of the monads
of the body there corresponds a psychical activity of the monad of the
is the famous doctrine of pre-established harmony. ‘According
to this system’, says Leibniz, ‘bodies act as if (to suppose
the impossible) there were no souls at all, and souls act as if there
were no bodies, and yet both body and soul act as if the one were influencing
the other’ ”. (op. cit., thesis lxxxii)
a “monad which belongs to its system”, Leibniz may mean
a lesser monad (incapable of apperception) which belongs to the body
of a greater monad (capable of apperception). The cells and atoms of
our body are presumably animated by such lesser monads. But, in a way,
all monads perceived by any monad constitute its body. “Body”
and “representation” are really identical. Something must
coordinate these representations so they are relatively faithful to
the condition of that which they represent—namely the host of
individual trained in occultism will immediately see problems with the
Doctrine of Pre-Established Harmony as Leibniz conceives it. It seems
to require too much intervention on the part of God. It abrogates the
occult Doctrine of Identification and leaves “God” forever
at a distance—ever transcendent; never immanent. Because Leibniz
feels the necessity to assert both monadic isolation and a plurality
of individual substances (rather than—as the occultist would insist—the
One Substance of which all substances are an inherent part), his thesis
demands a condition in which all created entities are eternally isolated
from each other, a condition in which each monad is forever separated
from communication or interaction with every other monad (at least in
the usual worlds of interaction) .
the opinion of the author, the whole scheme proves labored, unwieldy,
inelegant, unnatural and even ugly. It lacks simplicity and seems to
require of God a kind of divine ‘trick’ whereby at the outset
of Creation, He ‘so arranges things’, that each of His creations
should forever live in its own world without any possibility of real
communication, interchange or communion, yet, somehow, although no interaction
is occurring, every change in the state ‘within’ each of
an infinitude of monads is registered, reflected or represented (with
greater or lesser clarity) within the perception of every other monad.
means whereby God accomplishes this monumental supernatural feat cannot
even be suggested, but is allowed as possible because man cannot possibly
understand the greatness of God nor His abilities.
doctrine impresses the author as the apotheosis of artificiality—created
by a brilliant mind in which the principle of distinction dominates
the principle of unity. Why should an Infinite God ‘wish’
to maintain such a system which guarantees the perpetually inviolate
distinction of an infinitude of indivisible substances?
the intricacy of third ray thought (abetted by fifth ray analysis) seems
to be at work in conceiving this doctrine. The insularity of Cancer
(which at the beginning of human evolution contributes to a condition
in which “the blind unit is lost”) (EA 332) reappears on
a much higher turn of the spiral as, shall we say, ‘the encapsulated
unit (i.e., monad) is forever distinct and isolated’. Psychologically,
Leibniz seems to fear the possibility of merging with God as leading
to a loss of distinct identity.
Cancerian “shell” is maintained forever, with no possibility
of dissolution (though the entirety of the universe is “reflected”
or “represented” within it. One can forever be only the
limited individual (however relatively glorious), reflecting an infinitude
of other limited individuals, each reflecting each other. One can never
actually be the Whole. Perhaps, in this condition of ‘self-contained
universal perception’, it is possible that the “whole is
seen as one’, but one never becomes the whole. One merely perceives
the Doctrine of Cyclically Recurring Universes had occurred to Leibniz
and seemed acceptable, his metaphysical conception of the monad and
its place in universe would probably have been altered considerably.
Because, however, he did not consider the universe as cyclic, he embraced
the idea of an infinite, God-created universe with an infinitude of
permanent substances—i.e., monads
Leibniz was an extremely advanced thinker in every respect (some say
the greatest thinker of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries), his
propagation of this psychologically separative doctrine suggests that
he was, in this particular conception at least, subject to illusion.
It is illusion which must be overcome before it is possible to take
the third initiation. An initiate of the third degree is capable of
revealing the reality of the “One”.
it is inadvisable to oversimplify the situation or to underestimate
the subtlety of Leibniz’s thought, Leibniz, in his deepest metaphysics,
seems intent on revealing the eternally unchangeable existence of the
“Many”—even though each of the “Many”
is, he would say, a ‘One Alone’. It is apparently abhorrent
to him to resolve the many into One, as the individual would be lost.
He abhors the fact that Spinoza has done this, saying that he merely
brought to explicit expression that which Descartes implied.
Fundamental Principles of the Secret Doctrine simply do not
enter into his thought. One cannot reasonably expect that they would,
for they are primarily an Eastern Teaching and were not brought to the
West until more than one hundred fifty years after his death (though
Leibniz was aware of Chinese metaphysics and respected it).
he taken these Three Fundamentals into consideration, they would have
helped to resolve many of the difficulties present in his Doctrine of
the Monad. It is likely, however, that even if Leibniz had known of
these Principles, he would have rejected them as fundamentally flawed,
The existence of a Boundless Immutable Principle
The adherence of all entities to the Law of Periodicity
The identity of every soul with the Oversoul.
Fundamentals necessitate unity, fusion, merging and identification and
do not permit of a permanent individuality. The individual becomes a
temporary structure superceded inevitably by a Greater Identity—that
of the Whole. Eternally encapsulated individualism has no place in the
Ageless Wisdom Doctrine.
The Doctrine of Continuity: “Nature Makes no Leaps”:
Monads appear in an infinite continuum—the upper reach of which,
at least, is infinite. The continuum ranges from the monads who are
incapable of apperception (for instance, the monads associated with
the lesser, unselfconscious lives), and proceeds towards those monads
capable of apperception (the monads of human beings, capable of self-reflection).
Presumably, monads more advanced than the human are capable of ever-increasing
degrees of apperception. Leibniz would have had the problem of how to
determine when God created this infinitude of monads—at a single
“Creation”, with man being the leading monadic type? Many
metaphysical problems arise should this be the case.
“Creation” had occurred as a single Event and a definite
Time, it is inconceivable how there could presently exist an infinite
continuum of monads existing in infinitudinous gradations of perceptions.
But his is not the place to enter into possible discrepancies or inconsistencies
in Leibniz’s metaphysics. Suffice it to say that, through his
Doctrine of Continuity, he attempted to overcome the sharp Cartesian
“split” between mind and matter, demonstrating, thereby,
the presence of the softer or bridging rays such as the second and fourth,
and the effectiveness of Mercurian linking and Jupiterian fusion in
his thought process.
well, a vision of a distant, sublime (even infinite) goal is suggested,
and this is promoted by indefinite Neptune in Sagittarius. Neptune is
a planet which has much to do with the indefinite and, thus, with the
concept of Infinity.
Optimism: Leibniz’s view of God and the universe is optimistic.
All monads are organized by God into a vast and harmonious system, over
which God, the Infinite Monad and Creator, presides. The power, wisdom
and goodness of God are infinite. The monads which God created are as
good as they can possibly be and the world (or universe) is the “best
of all possible worlds”. The law which governs this universe is,
as well, the best possible law. While evil does exist in the world,
it exists so that a greater good may be accomplished. God has so arranged
the world that evil is made to serve the purpose of harmony, symmetry
and beauty. Because we are only related to a small portion of the universe,
that portion makes the greatest demands upon our sympathies. We do not
understand the larger context or the larger purpose, and so misjudge
as evil that which serves to accomplish a greater good than we can conceive.
Sagittarian/Jupiterian optimism emerges in his doctrine of “the
best of all possible worlds”. His meticulous reasoning is based
upon a profound faith in God’s transcendent Goodness. Mystical
Neptune in optimistic Sagittarius placed in the twelfth house of faith
contributes to his positivity concerning God and Creation. Under the
influence of Jupiter and the Sun in Cancer, Leibniz embraces wholeness,
and under Sagittarius, Jupiter and Neptune he sees that wholeness, not
only as good, but as good as it can possibly be—maximally good.
great subtlety of intellect (for instance, the pondering of the possibility
of multiple universes—and such related questions as now occupy
the speculations of quantum physicists) was at work behind Leibniz’s
sanguine and apparently naive doctrine of “the best of all possible
worlds”, which he understood as a philosophical necessity given
a morally perfect God animated by the principle of “sufficient
of all the infinitude of universes which God might choose to actuate,
according to the principle of sufficient reason, a morally perfect God
would have to have a “sufficient reason” for choosing exactly
this universe, hence the superiority of this particular universe over
every other possible universe. This universe, then, would be the best
possible. A morally perfect God could choose to create no less than
the best possible universe. This doctrine is absolutely positive—a
supremely appreciative affirmation relating to the second ray even more
than to the sixth.
Translated by Donald Rutherford
There follows an account
of a most revealing dream. We find in this dream super-conscious factors
at work. Leibniz’s deeper motivations are revealed as well as
numinous contacts with those higher aspects of his nature which served
to guide him. This dream establishes him as a confirmed seeker of truth
and enlightenment, longing for the “supernal light”.
One cannot help but compare
the substance of this dream to Plato’s “Allegory of the
Cave”. It is a dream which charts the course towards enlightenment
and confirms Leibniz as a disciple intent on following the dictates
of his Sagittarian Rising Sign and thus approaching more closely to
the source of illumination.
I was satisfied
with what I was among men, but I was not satisfied with human nature.
I often considered with chagrin the hardships to which we are subjected,
the shortness of our life, the vanity of glory, the improprieties
that are born of sensual pleasure, the illnesses that overwhelm even
our spirit; finally, the annihilation of all our greatness and all
our perfections in the moment of death, which appears to reduce to
nothing the fruits of our labors. These meditations left me full of
melancholy. I naturally loved to act well and to know the truth. Yet
it appeared that I punished myself unnecessarily, that a successful
crime was worth more than an oppressed virtue, and that a madness
that is content is preferable to an aggrieved reason.
However, I resisted
these objections and directed my spirit on the right course by thinking
about the divinity who must have given a proper order to everything
and who sustained my hopes with the expectation of a future capable
of redressing everything. This conflict was renewed in me by the sight
of some great disturbance, either among men, when I saw injustice
triumph and innocence chastened, or in nature, when hurricanes or
earthquakes destroyed cities and provinces and caused thousands to
die without distinguishing the good from the wicked, as though nature
cared no more for us than we trouble ourselves about ants or worms
that we encounter in our path. I was greatly moved by these spectacles
and could not stop myself pitying the condition of mortals.
One day, being
fatigued from these thoughts, I fell asleep and found myself in a
dark place which resembled an underground cavern. It was vast and
very deep and everywhere there swarmed men who strangely rushed into
the darkness in pursuit of luminous trifles they called "honors,"
or glittering little flies they called "riches." There were
many who searched the ground for bright bits of rotten wood they called
"sensual pleasures." Each of these evil lights had its followers;
there were some who had changed parties and others who had quit the
chase altogether because of exhaustion or despair. Some of those who
ran blindly and often believed they had reached their goal fell into
crevasses, out of which only moans were heard. Some were bitten by
scorpions and other venomous creatures that left them wretched and
often mad. Yet neither these examples nor the arguments of persons
better informed stopped others from chasing the same hazards and even
entering into fights in order to forestall rivals or keep themselves
from being forestalled.
In the vault of
this huge cavern there were little holes and almost imperceptible
cracks. Here a trace of daylight entered; yet it was so weak that
it required careful attention to notice it. One frequently heard voices
which said, "Stop you mortals, or run like the miserable beings
you are." Others said, "Raise your eyes to the sky."
But no one stopped and no one raised their eyes except in pursuit
of these dangerous trinkets. I was one of those who was greatly struck
by these voices. I began often to look above me and finally recognized
the small light which demanded so much attention. It seemed to me
to grow stronger the more I gazed steadily at it. My eyes were saturated
with its rays, and when, immediately after, I relied on it to see
where I was going, I could discern what was around me and what would
suffice to secure me from dangers. A venerable old man who had wandered
for a long time in the cave and who had had thoughts very similar
to mine told me that this light was what is called "intelligence"
or "reason" in us. I often changed position in order to
test the different holes in the vault that furnished this small light,
and when I was located in a spot where several beams could be seen
at once from their true point of view, I found a collection of rays
which greatly enlightened me. This technique was of great help to
me and left me more capable of acting in the darkness.
many positions, I was at last led by my good fortune to a place which
was unique and the most advantageous in the cave, a place reserved
for those whom the divinity wished to remove completely from this
darkness. Hardly had I begun to look upward than I was surrounded
by a bright light shining from all sides: the whole cave and its miseries
were fully disclosed to my eyes. But a moment later a dazzling clarity
surprised me. It soon expanded and I saw before me the image of a
young man whose beauty enchanted my senses. There seemed a majesty
about him, which produced a veneration mixed with apprehension; yet
the gentleness of his gaze reassured me. I began, however, to be aware
of myself weakening and was about to faint, when I felt myself touched
by a bough imbued with a marvelous liquor. I could compare it to nothing
I had ever felt before and it gave me the strength to endure the presence
of this celestial messenger. He called me by name and spoke to me
in a charming voice: "Give thanks to the divine goodness which
releases you from this madness." At the same time he touched
me again and at that instant I felt myself rise. I was no longer in
the cavern; I no longer saw the vault above me. I found myself on
a high mountain, which revealed to me the face of the earth. I saw
at a distance what I only wanted to consider in general; yet when
I studied some spot in a determined way, it at once grew and I needed
no other telescopic vision than my own attention to see it as though
it were next to me. This gave me a marvelous pleasure and emboldened
me to say to my guide: "Mighty spirit--for I cannot doubt that
you are of the number of those celestial figures who make up the court
surrounding the sovereign of the universe--since you have wanted to
clarify to my eyes, will you do as much for my mind?"
It seemed to me
that he smiled at this speech and took pleasure in hearing of my desire.
"Your wish is granted," he said to me, "since you hold
wisdom above the pleasure of those vain spectacles the world presents
to your eyes. However, you will lose nothing that is substantial in
those same spectacles. You will see everything with eyes clarified
in a completely different way. Your understanding being fortified
from above, it will discover everywhere the brilliant illumination
of the divine author of things. You will recognize only wisdom and
happiness, wherever men are accustomed to find only vanity and bitterness.
You will be content with your creator; you will be enraptured with
the vision of his works. Your admiration will not be the effect of
ignorance as it is with the vulgar. It will be the fruit of knowledge
of the grandeur and marvels of God. Instead of scorning with men the
unraveled secrets, which in earlier times they regarded with astonishment,
you will find that when you are admitted into the interior of nature
your raptures, you will go on growing the farther you advance.
For you will only
be at the beginning of a chain of beauties and delights that go on
growing into infinity. The pleasures that enchain your senses and
that Circe of your legends who changes men into beasts will have no
hold on you, so long as you attach yourself to the beauties of the
soul, which never die and never disappoint. You will belong to our
fold and will go with us from world to world, from discovery to discovery,
from perfection to perfection. With us you will pay court to the supreme
being, who is beyond all worlds and fills them without being divided.
You will be at once before his throne and among those who are distant
from it. For God will establish his siege in your soul and heaven
follows him everywhere. Go, therefore, and raise your spirit above
all that is mortal and perishable, and cleave only to the eternal
truths of the light of God. You will not always live here below, this
mortal life which sufficiently approaches that of beasts. There will
come a time when you will be delivered entirely of the chains of this
body. Use well, therefore, the time that providence gives you here,
and seek that your perfections to come will be proportional to the
cares you give yourself here in achieving them."
who have studied the third initiation carefully will recognize that
Leibniz is dealing with precisely those themes which indicate its achievement.
He was certainly passionately concerned with exactly those recognitions
which distinguish a third degree initiate.
Wilhelm von Leibniz once said “He who knows me by my published
works alone does not know me at all.”(Qui me non nisi editis novit,
1903 there were discovered 15,000 letters and unedited fragments of
his work. Many of these still have neither been published or translated.
The fact that we know as much about Leibniz as we do is the result of
the work of one of his followers, Christian Wolfe (1679-1754) who reduced
the diffusion of a portion of Leibniz’s work into more compact
and readable form. Perhaps for this reason alone, Leibniz’s influence
was able to reach a wider public and was able to have an important impact
on the Enlightenment—particularly in Germany where it influenced
a movement known as “German Illumination”.
what we have of Leibniz’s work is so extensive, rich and varied
that few minds can assay to understand it in its completeness. Perhaps
some understand his mathematics; others perhaps are more attuned to
his metaphysics or his theology. It is a rare individual whose philosophical-mathematical-spiritual-scientific
embrace is sufficient for full comprehension. Such an individual would
perhaps have to be a genuine polymath as Leibniz was.
the occult perspective, we can view Leibniz as a member of the third
ray Ashram under the direction of the Mahachohan. His driving purpose
was to explain the nature of reality and man’s place in the universe.
Only an advanced soul can undertake such a quest with any hope of success,
and it must be judged that Leibniz was relatively successful.
he be considered an initiate? Surely, it could be said that he was at
least an initiate of the second degree. As perhaps the greatest thinker
of the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries, he would have to be.
Far lesser thinkers than he judge themselves to have passed the Baptism
Initiation. Surely, the quality of Leibniz’s emotional life was
sufficiently serene, his idealism sufficiently strong, and his aspiration
sufficiently keen to indicate that he had (however unconsciously) passed
the test of purification.
well it may be said that he passed the tests of temptation, encountered
according to the esoteric doctrine, midway between the second and third
degrees.. He worked within a worldly setting, amongst royalty and nobility,
but he seems to have keep his motives pure and lofty. He was not compromised
to any significant extent by “the world, the flesh and the devil”.
His eyes were fastened upon the elevation of thought and the betterment
of humanity, and there they remained.
seems that he was speeding fast (Sagittarius) towards the Mountain of
Illumination, and surely experienced the quality of that illumination
from time to time—the “light supernal”. His alternative
Capricorn Rising Signs (the East Point and the Anti-Vertex) would indicate
this possibility as would the heliocentric Earth (the esoteric ruler
of his Sagittarian Ascendant) in Capricorn.
revelatory “Philosophical Dream” shows his motivation
beyond question, as a committed, one-pointed seeker of truth, regardless
of the diversity of fields in which he sought. In Leibniz, genius served
both God and a lofty morality befitting his strong Sagittarian and Jupiterian
legacy certainly includes the calculus—an invaluable mathematical
tool, but even more a metaphysics in which the essential nature of the
human being (the monadic nature) was established as immortal and inviolate,
and the goodness of an infinite God was held before the eyes of humanity
as a philosophical certainty.
many respects, Leibniz’s philosophy solved, to his satisfaction,
the problems of the nature of Time and Space, reducing them to phenomenological
illusions—certainly the task of an initiate consciousness. The
noblest thought of the great metaphysician, Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz,
was a highly intelligent affirmation of God, man and the universe.