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    A Glossary of Astrological Terms for the letter "V"

    Use this glossary to look up the meanings of words you come across on this website, or in your astrological reading. Just select the first letter of the word you need and click on it in the table below to go straight to that sector.
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    V

    Vaastu (VŃstu)
    Indigenous Indian variety of Feng Shui. Involving geomancy and astrologically correct placement of energies in the home and business, this ancient discipline is widely employed among Indian communities to this day.
    Vacua Cursus
    Latin for Void of Course.
    Varga
    There are 16 divisional modes (vargas) of the natal chart in Jyotish (Vedic) astrology. Based on fractions of each sign, each varga gives light on a different side of the character.
    Veda
    Ancient Indian scriptures, comprising the original basis of the Hindu religions and philosophies, including related teachings such as Yoga, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism and even Hare Krishna! There are four Vedas:
    1. Rig-Veda, the most ancient
    2. Yajur-Veda, sacrificial formulŠ
    3. Sama-Veda, ritual hymns and chants; mystic formulŠ
    4. Atharva-Veda, spells and magical incantations; philosophical speculations
    The Vedas, believed to be eternal truths revealed anew at the beginning of every new age, were originally composed and sung in Sanskrit, one of the earliest of the Indo-European tongues, from which most of the modern languages of Europe, the Middle East and India have ultimately descended.
    Vedanta
    "The end of the Vedas". Originally comprising the Upanishads or esoteric forest teachings that grew out of the Vedic religion taught by ancient gurus to their closest disciples. It developed into a philosophical school, which holds that the basis of all life is divine and that the goal of life is to realise the divinity inherent in our nature.
    Vedic Astrology
    A system of astrology (a.k.a. Jyotish) favoured in India, ultimately deriving from the teachings of the Indian scriptures (Vedas). The controversial term "Vedic" astrology is a very recent, apparently Western invention, mainly to avoid the term "Hindu" astrology—the Jyotish system having been devised in antiquity, but long after the Vedas were originally composed. The prime differences from modern Western Tropical Astrology include: the employment of the Sidereal Zodiac; planetary periods (dasha) and sub-periods (bhukti); the idea of planetary "friends" and "enemies"; divisional modes (varga); the pre-eminence of the Moon (Chandra) and the use of the nakshatras, or Lunar Mansions.
    Venus
    The evening and morning star, a planet symbolising matters to do with love, affection, beauty, the arts, money and so on. Ruler of Taurus and Libra. Exalted in Pisces. The lesser benefic. More about Venus.
    Vernal Equinox
    Spring Equinox (northern hemisphere). The first degree of Aries, the beginning of the astrological year, when the Sun crosses the celestial equator from south to north. In the southern hemisphere it is the Autumnal Equinox. More on the Equinox.
    Vernal Point
    Point on the ecliptic marking the position of the Sun at the moment of the Vernal Equinox. It is defined as the first degree of Aries in the Tropical Zodiac. This point moves backwards through the sidereal zodiac at the rate of a little over one degree every 72 years. This movement is called the Precession of the Equinoxes. The current location (2009) of the Vernal Point in the sidereal zodiac is at approximately 5 degrees of sidereal Pisces.
    Vertex
    1. Point used by some astrologers to represent the inner life of the ascendant. Calculated by inverting the degree of the Ascendant (i.e., calculating the degree of the ascendant as if the native were born in the opposite hemisphere and calling this point the Vertex), it is the point where the prime vertical intersects the ecliptic and is always found west of the meridien. It can be above or below the horizon.
    2. A malefic Fixed Star (really a nebula) in the constellation Andromeda on the 28th degree of tropical Aries. This is the famed Andromeda Galaxy.
    Verticle
    The prime verticle (vertical), or circle of observation, is a Great Circle passing directly overhead from due east to due west, in which an observer stands when facing south. This circle is divided into 12 equal parts, comprising the 12 houses through which the signs and planets seem to pass obliquely in their apparent diurnal motion from east to west. See Prime Vertical.
    Vespertine
    A planet setting in the evening after sunset. See Matutine.
    Vesta
    The Eternal Flame; goddess of the hearth, representing personal integration, dedication and commitment. An asteroid seen by modern astrologers as significant. More about Asteroids.
    Via Combusta
    "The Burning Way". A problematic area of the zodiac between 15░ Libra and 15░ Scorpio. It is especially difficult for the Moon. In a horary chart, the Moon in the via combusta is widely held to be a stricture against judgement.
    Vigintile (semi-decile)
    One of Kepler's minor aspects. 18 degrees, somewhat positive.
    Virgo
    The sixth sign of the zodiac. Mutable and earthy. Ruled by Mercury. Emblem: The Virgin with a sheaf of wheat. More about Virgo.
    Visible Planets
    The planets visible to the naked eye: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Sun and Moon are also classed as visible planets in astrology. Uranus is visible without a telescope under some circumstances, but is not included in the schema.
    Vital Force
    Animating principle, or life force (Úlan vital), without which life cannot exist. It has been described as an organizing, formative, and therefore ultimately spiritual force. A non-materialistic essence no longer recognised by Western material science, it remains the expression of spirit in living beings, underlying yet beyond the physical and chemical reactions of the organism. See Vitalism.
    Vitalism
    The doctrine that all the functions of a living organism are the consequence of a deep vital principle, a life force distinct from all chemical and physical reactions. This principle is applied to physical, inorganic environments, as well as organic beings, hence the idea that all things are connected. Inorganic consciousness—vital force—can be actively present in substances such as crystals, gems and so on, just as a valley, a forest, or a river can have a consciousness, as held by animist religions. Planetary consciousness is also taught is esoteric schools. More on Vitalism.
    Void (degrees)
    Certain degrees traditionally believed to cause incompetence, lack of understanding and poor judgement when holding the Moon, the Lord of the ascendant, the Lord of the figure, or the ascendant in a nativity.
    Void of Course
    When a planet forms no further aspect for the remainder of its time in a sign in which it is located (before changing to the next sign). Used mainly for the Moon in Horary Astrology, it is said by most modern astrologers that it indicates that nothing will come of the matter. It is a testimony that the horary chart is not radical. William Lilly, a prime authority on traditional astrology, holds that the Moon is not VoC if inside a moiety of an aspect, even if the aspected planet lies out of sign. He also holds that the Moon is never dangerously VoC in Taurus, Cancer, Sagittarius, or Pisces. Moreover he says that VoC does not necessarily signify that nothing will come of a matter, but that things "go hardly on" (i.e. "proceed with difficulty", unless the significators be strong, in which case there is no real problem with the Moon being VoC).
    Vulcan
    A hypothetical planet supposed to lie inside the orbit of Mercury. Originally postulated to account for perturbations in planetary orbits, this planet is no longer supposed to exist by science, although some astrologers claim it as a sort of spiritual entity having power in a horoscope. Observations of Vulcan have been made by astronomers, but the odds are that they did not see an intra-Mercurial planet, but something else, such as a star, asteroid, comet, or sunspot. Were these actual observations of massive UFO's..?
    Vulcanoids
    Postulated belt of small asteroids orbiting the Sun within the orbit of Mercury. These were postulated to explain the Vulcan "sightings", but so far have no reliable scientific verification. They also have no astrological significance.
    Vulcanus
    A hypothetical Trans-Neptunian planet used in Uranian astrology.
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