Constellations (1)

The most extensive Talmudic statement about the constellations is found in Tractate Shabbat (p. 156a). Known as mazalot in Hebrew, the constellations are depicted there as having direct influence on one’s makeup and direction in life (for the good or the bad). There’s a discussion there, by the way, about whether the constellations themselves have that effect or the day of the week one is born in [1]. In any event, we’re told that someone born under the sign of the Sun, for example, will be radiant and self-sufficient, and will hold no secrets; that someone born under the sign of the Moon will suffer, will destroy and build, will build and destroy, will live off of others, and will have secrets; etc.

Elsewhere we’re told that certain months of the year influence us (see Ta’anit 29), and that what’s most especially affected by the constellations are one’s progeny, income, and life-span (see Moed Kattan 28a) [2].

But there’s a lot more.



[1]       The Tikkunei Zohar says it’s the hour of the day that matters (p. 139).

[2]       The Zohar contends that everything depends on the constellations (1, p. 198).

(c) 2010 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

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