A Modern Medieval Textbook – Nicola Smuts Allsop
Published April 2018 by The Wessex Astrologer Ltd, 4a Woodside Road, Bournemouth, BH5 2A
Fertility Astrology is a landmark work produced over a decade of client sessions and accurate predictions of successful pregnancies. Framing astrology in terms of narrative healing, South African-born astrologer Nicola Smuts Allsop discusses the prominent myths that reveal ancestral beliefs about fertility, timing, and the interrelationship between stellar imagery and cultural practice.
She argues that accurate fertility astrology is more than just a glance at the lunar phase or the ruler of the fifth house and its condition. Her intricate fertility astrology practice weaves together techniques from various astrological traditions, including Hellenistic, medieval, traditional, fixed star, and modern astrology’s.
Often, modern medicine has difficulty in correctly diagnosing infertility in couples. Using medical astrology, Smuts Allsop shows you how to diagnose the quality of fertility of those wishing to conceive, and what should be focused on in these unexplained cases of infertility. She then teaches techniques for the successful timing of pregnancies and births. Her techniques will aid all those couples seeking to achieve conception, those using natural methods, those who need medical assistance, those using donor egg or sperm, and in worst case scenarios, surrogacy.
This is by no means a modern ‘cookbook’ of fertility astrology. Several detailed case studies demonstrate how to navigate the complex web of delineation techniques used and provide you with all the elements you need for successful client sessions. The book concludes with resources and helpful study aids to cement the material in your own practice.
Beyond the immediate concerns of fertility, Fertility Astrology provides a compelling model for the use of astrology as a narrative healing methodology in the wider, general practice of medicine.
What a delight this book was to read! It will be for any astrologer interested in, or versed in, traditional astrology. Or any astrologer interested in the topic of significators of fertility in a natal chart. The author – as the subtitle reads – has succeeded quite well in applying medieval astrological technique in a very modern field of expertise, i.e. helping couples getting pregnant by means of IVF, hormone treatment, etc. Or just by finding out when it is the most opportune time to conceive.
I really like Nicola’s opening statement on how to read this book: “this is a thoroughly contemporary book of medieval astrology, which may well present you with new techniques and also some that might contradict what you already know.” And off she goes into a very detailed coverage of all general theory and opinion surrounding the issue of fertility (some good, some less so), and her own astrological method(s) of establishing fertility in a chart (some good, some less so; one paragraph reads: Dispelling the myth of the ‘Jonas Method’).
Four chapters are dedicated to specific in-depth case studies in which the author builds up her case for using medieval technique, and gradually introducing a solid method for evaluating fertility in charts. She doesn’t spare herself and describes all the pitfalls she had to face in doing this hands on with clients. Quite a daunting enterprise I’m sure, but this instills confidence as she ploughs through all the possible indicators having to do with this topic.
Essentially, this book is about solid astrological prediction, applied to a specific topic; fertility. And a whole range of methods for prediction available from astrological tradition for prediction are used: the almuten of pregnancy of Omar Tiberias; the triplicity rulers of the ascendant and luminary; yearly profections; progressions by solar arc; solar returns; transits; midpoints, fixed stars and firdaria. Nicola reviews and evaluates all of them and offers her view on how to use them in this field of knowledge.
The book has a chapter on ‘signatures’ of fertility, which is a (much) better title than ‘recipes for fertility’. Here we find excellent counselling advice for clients having signatures that indicate a possible fertility challenge for both male and females.
This book really bridges the debate of ‘my ancient/modern astrology is the best form of astrology there is’. Nicola is a firm believer in using both together, as she shows constantly in her case descriptions and practice. Yet I sense a bias towards medieval techniques for prediction, and rightly so as she consistently proves them to be very effective in predicting fertile periods in life.
A highly recommended read.