SPRAGGETT ON CHESS
One of my favourite sites is Edward Winter’s ”CHESS NOTES”, which is also perhaps the number one web-site on matters concerning the history of modern chess. I recommend the readers to visit this extraordinary site and just browse thru….you will be surprised with what you might find!
In the current column, Winter presents a chart of Capablanca’s horoscope!
Curious on this matter, I did some of my own digging on the internet, and found a site that can provide detailed information about Capablanca’s astrological history:
Born: November 19, 1888, 1:45 AM in: La Havane (Cuba)
Sun: 27°26 Scorpio
Moon: 4°39 Gemini
Ascendant: 25°18 Virgo
Midheaven: 25°18 Gemini
Numerology: Birthpath 1
The dominant planets of Jose Raul CAPABLANCA
”When interpreting a natal chart, the best method is to start gradually from general features to specific ones. Thus, there is usually a plan to be followed, from the overall analysis of the chart and its structure, to the description of its different character traits.
In the first part, an overall analysis of the chart enables us to figure out the personality’s main features and to emphasize several points that are confirmed or not in the detailed analysis: in any case, those general traits are taken into account. Human personality is an infinitely intricate entity and describing it is a complex task. Claiming to rapidly summarize it is illusory, although it does not mean that it is an impossible challenge. It is essential to read a natal chart several times in order to absorb all its different meanings and to grasp all this complexity. But the exercise is worthwhile.
In brief, a natal chart is composed of ten planets: two luminaries, the Sun and the Moon, three fast-moving or individual planets, Mercury, Venus and Mars, two slow-moving planets, Jupiter and Saturn, and three very slow-moving planets, Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. Additional secondary elements are: the Lunar Nodes, the Dark Moon or Lilith, Chiron and other asteroids such as Vesta, Pallas, Ceres or Juno. There are also special features such as the Arabic Parts, the Vertex, the Black Sun, hypothetical planets, etc. They are all posited on the Zodiac wheel consisting of twelve signs, from Aries to Pisces, and divided into twelve astrological houses.
The first step is to evaluate the importance of each planet. This is what we call identifying the dominant planets. This process obeys rules that depend on the astrologer’s sensitivity and experience but it also has precise and steady bases: thus, we can take into account the parameters of a planet’s activity (the number of active aspects a planet forms, the importance of each aspect according to its nature and its exactness), angularity parameters; (proximity to the four angles, Ascendant, Midheaven, Descendant and Imum Coeli or Nadir, all of them being evaluated numerically, according to the kind of angle and the planet-angle distance) and quality parameters (rulership, exaltation, exile and fall). Finally, other criteria such as the rulership of the Ascendant and the Midheaven etc. are important.
These different criteria allow a planet to be highlighted and lead to useful conclusions when interpreting the chart.
The overall chart analysis begins with the observation of three sorts of planetary distributions in the chart: Eastern or Western hemisphere, Northern or Southern hemisphere, and quadrants (North-eastern, North-western, South-eastern and South-western). These three distributions give a general tone in terms of introversion and extraversion, willpower, sociability, and behavioural predispositions.
Then, there are three additional distributions: elements (called triplicity since there are 3 groups of signs for each one) – Fire, Air, Earth and Water – corresponding to a character typology, modality (or quadruplicity with 4 groups of signs for each one) – Cardinal, Fixed and Mutable – and polarity (Yin and Yang).
There are three types of dominants: dominant planets, dominant signs and dominant houses. The novice thinks astrology means only “to be Aries” or sometimes, for example, “to be Aries Ascendant Virgo”. It is actually far more complex. Although the Sun and the Ascendant alone may reveal a large part of the character- approximately between 30 and 60% according to the chart, a person is neither “just the Sun” (called the sign) nor just “the first house” (the Ascendant). Thus, a particular planet’s influence may be significantly increased; a particular sign or house may contain a group of planets that will bring nuances and sometimes weaken the role of the Ascendant, of the Sun sign etc.
Lastly, there are two other criteria: accentuations (angular, succedent and cadent) which are a classification of astrological houses and types of decanates that are occupied (each sign is divided into three decanates of 10° each). They provide additional information in this first general part.
These eleven (or six, if the birth time is unknown) general character traits must not be taken literally; they are, somehow, preparing for the chart reading. They allow to understand the second part of the analysis, which is more detailed and precise. It focuses on every area of the personality and provides a synthesis of all the above-mentioned parameters according to sound hierarchical rules.”
There is also a short explanation of the great Akiba Rubinstein’s curious habit of running off from the board each time he had made his move:
”From pages 77-78 of Soultanbéieff’s Guide pratique du Jeu des Combinaisons, in the introduction to his draw against Rubinstein at Liège, 1930 (our translation):
‘Once he had played his move, Rubinstein would leave the table and sit in a corner of the hall. When his opponent’s reply had been made, he came back unhurriedly to the board. The waste of time was evident, and Rubinstein, a very slow player, suffered from it frequently (it is known how many games he lost on time).
One day I asked him why he did not remain at the board to await his opponent’s reply, which was sometimes imminent, and the explanation he gave me astounded me in the mouth of a professional master: “So as not to disturb my opponent; some players are not at ease when one watches them thinking.”’
SPRAGGETT ON CHESS