Book Review – A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs by Joseph Polansky

December, 2018

Book Review

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs

by Joseph Polansky



Having a large section on my bookshelf dedicated to Astrological studies and having decades of experience as an astrologer, I must admit that I had some preconceived notion of what I could expect in reading this book; also on a subject that I am very well versed.

By way of a little introduction for those whose primary experience with astrology has been in religiously purchasing those little scrolls of Sun Sign wisdom available at the retail counter here is a bit of information about the complexity and nature of this particular discipline. Astrology has both a mundane and esoteric approach. The former being what we traditionally come across by way of chart readings, daily predictions and guidelines and the basic and fundamental perspectives, and I would add psychological, attributes of the individual’s birth chart. The more mundane (not to be confused with astrological interpretation of geographic place) aspect of astrology is further sub-divided into a variety of interpretative styles, including Vedic/Sidereal astrology, Western/Tropical astrology, Babylonian Astrology and many more.

Esoteric Astrology perceives the zodiacal signs as attributes of archetypal spiritual energy; there is additionally the psycho-spiritual overlay applied. Each having a (sentient) nature that informs the spiritual bodies of the individual and by so doing, informs the spiritual progress of this and other lifetimes. Just as is the case with Western (traditional) astrology, each of the signs has a planet associated with its energy. However in esoteric astrology the assignations of those planets differs from the traditional, because what becomes the focus of this study is that of the spiritual (and sentient) nature of the planets as they act upon the more etheric nature of the signs. Either (Western or Esoteric) of these approaches requires quite a lot of study and understanding of the basic principles to make full use of their gifts.

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs starts off on the right foot, moving through each of the zodiacal signs and giving enough basic information on each that the dip into the more esoteric astrological approach is easily grasped. Additionally, throughout the book, Mr. Polansky has provided the reader with a copious and varietal amount of meditations and contemplative reflections that serve as another layer of experiencing the more spiritual, vs. astronomical nature of the signs.

The Table of Contents is thoughtfully organized to provide some basic information at the foreground and develop into a broader perspective inclusive of other ways of making use of astrological energies. Mr. Polansky folds in some additional uses of astrology, such as Medical astrology, aromatherapy using the construct of astrological energetics. Each of these sub-sections breaks out how that modality would present itself through each of the astrological signs, giving the reader an instant “grab on” and point of reference.

There is an interesting chapter, The Twelve Yogas, that weaves the philosophies of Yoga (not simply in its form of Hatha-or posture) into a meditative practice aligned with your astrological sign. In particular the overlay for this exploration is the alchemical element of the various signs and the particular form that will support that disposition. For example, those of Air signs are guided towards practices that incorporate mind (Jnana yoga) and breath (Pranayama yoga); Water signs align with the yogic focus of love and devotion (Bhakti); Fire with that of fire (Agni yoga) and action (Karmic yoga), and Earth signs benefit from postures and movement (Hatha yoga) and ritual work. I found this to be a nice touch in making connections and use of astrological principles beyond the traditional nature of prediction and identification.

This book is a smorgasbord of tastings and samplings for the student of astrology who wishes to stretch a little further. Theosophical, Eastern Philosophies, Western Hermetics, Ayurvedic practices, Metaphysics, Alchemy and Esotericism and more are all folded into the information of this book. Some reveal themselves only if you are aware of the disciplines from which they are derived, which is neither a comment of critique nor praise. This is often the case when pursuing any of the disciplines of esoteric knowledge.

All in all I believe A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs to be a lovely foray into expanding your understanding of astrology and being able to access relevant and enough recognizable traits to engage the reader and inspire them to seek out more.

A Spiritual Look at the 12 Signs: An Introduction To Spiritual Astrology on Amazon



About the Author:

Robin Fennelly is a Wiccan High Priestess, teacher, poet and author.

She is the author of (click on book titles for more information):


The Inner Chamber Volume One on Amazon

It’s Written in the Stars



The Inner Chamber, Vol. Two

poetry of the Spheres (Volume 2) on Amazon



The Inner Chamber, Vol. Three

Awakening the Paths on Amazon



A Year With Gaia on Amazon

The Eternal Cord


Temple of the Sun and Moon on Amazon

Luminous Devotions


The Magickal Pen Volume One (Volume 1) on Amazon

A Collection of Esoteric Writings


The Elemental Year on Amazon

Aligning the Parts of SELF


The Enchanted Gate on Amazon

Musings on the Magick of the Natural World


Sleeping with the Goddess on Amazon

Nights of Devotion


A Weekly Reflection on Amazon

Musings for the Year


Her books are available on Amazon or on this website and her Blogs can be found atRobin Fennelly 


Follow Robin on Instagram & Facebook.

Origins of the Alchemical Salt

April, 2012

The Salt from my interpretation is the “prana” or “life force” that is in all living things. We are born of

salt and die of salt in the physical, thus the salt is both the fires and the waters or Schamajim, which is

derived from the other Hebrew words of Fire, or Asche, and Water, or Amajim. It is used in the context

in the very beginning “Elohim created the heavens and the earth. Heavens was Schamajim in the

Hebrew Text. So this is an insinuation of the fiery waters and the watery fires; or pure fires. The Fires

of Creation is commonly used in the western Kabbalah. Now this automatically assumes the role of the

salt in the terms of “the beginning” due to the fact we are born of salt. Now when we look at the fire

sign which is a right side up Triangle and Water which is a Upside down Triangle we then find we can

mix the two and get the Schamajim. This is merely the description of the divine “salt” in my own

terminology. When we break it down the fires came first and the waters came second, or was the first

of the secondary elements. This world of pure fire is represented as by 1 in the Kabbalah as the kether.

But manifests the malkuth after the Heavens marking 10 or the physical. In the Pythagorean Method

10 can be broken down into 1. The unification of the two elements make the 13 mercies or the physical

man, or the Star of David; but this is only fully created when “earth” is mentioned after the “heavens”

and the Physical is declared with Wisdom and Understanding of these two elements.

If we look at the earth in essence we will see the further we are from the Equator the less salt the

oceans of the earth makes, this is really from the lack of direct Solar rays. The Emerald tablet states,

“The sun is its father, the mother its moon” marking the unification of the ONE THING,or Divine

enlightenment. So this “Salt” is the beginning and our innocence, but we become diluted with loss of

innocence the further we grow, so spiritually we are straying from the equator to produce the salt. Now

the closer you get to the Equator the more salt there is due to the fact the there are more direct sun

rays, meaning that within ourselves we have to get to that center of ourselves, or the Tiphareth, or the

Sun, or unification of the Fire and Water together to produce the most salt or, Life. There are many of

those in the mundane that forget the goal of the Spiritual Realm and they lack salt. The salt is the

reversion past the EGO into the higher state of consciousness. The more we revert to our true nature

we start to feel the TRUE essence of this SALT, it shows in our daily actions towards ourselves and

others. We must remember there are the external fires and fires and the internal fires and waters. The

real answers come from within the inner fires of our cores and we add the pressure of life to our core;

though the fires manifested the Will and the Trials tested the Will, it is the Intuition that acts from the

fire and all that matters is how much of that Will the intuition grabbed.

When we get a piece of coal that sets under the earth for millions of years it is under extreme heat and

pressure through vents and channels from withing the earth, then we get a diamond from the fire and

Pressure, but it takes the waters for the Coal to cool when it is ready. The diamond is the most precious

of all stones with its hardness test. It is hard due to the fact of perfect lunar and solar parts of creation

in the physical within the earth. The earth alone was created from the Sun and we were a huge ball of

magma that cooled from the outside in, creating layers like an onion. So this marks the “the earth was

without form and void” so the physical was created from the fires, thus cooled and formed the waters

from the heat. When we read the seed was spread by the Mother or the Waters. The most amazing part

is the seed was scattered to make vegetation, this seed was in the storms of the Earth as the Waters and

burning fires created the Carbon-monoxide atmosphere. The atmosphere created the seed to be spread

with the moisture for the plants to strive for the later creations. Even if we read on the spiritual level in

the Genesis it is amazing the vegetation comes before both the night and day luminaries, showing the

Wisdom of future creation. Thus the Earth was born. The Sun Manifested itself in the core of the earth

to formulate a copy of itself.

Now the external forces are used to created the internal forces without the untrained mind, but the

trained mind uses its internal forces to create the external environment, marking the TRUE SALT, fire

on the outside and water on the outside; or pure fire. It was from the Salt the Sulphate of the Earth was

made. It was from the salt even the Gold and Silver were made, and they can be reverted back to salt

depending on what the Chemist chooses to do. There is one verse in the bible that says, “SALT OF

THE EARTH” and this is a key note. The salt gives the GOLD and SILVER life. Salt is both The

Alchemical Gold and the Alchemical Silver. We must take what the solar and lunar rays manifested us

into and use them to find the first stage of the Salt. We need life to find out what the other side of the

door way is, to experience the Will

I learned that we must keep the salt maintained in the numerous amounts of activities in everyday life

to keep balance of the fire and water, so we are not mere table salt, but pure sea salt from the Equator.

The whole purpose of life is the extending of our arms to the Universe, or the Greatest Alchemist of

all. The balance of the Salt in everyday life is not perfect due to human imperfections and flaws. At

times we will refuse to see another persons side of the story in drama because we only wish to see our

perception, so there for we have killed the waters of understanding and turned our fires of Wisdom into

Self righteousness; thus we have salt that is from the Sulpher of the Earth that is deformed from lack of

water. There was very little understanding in the situation you were in, so the “SALT” you were at that

moment is incomplete. The Mechanics of Salt are based around how much of the the internal and

external four elements are impacting the SELF by how you interpret the experience. Thus when we

strive to be the “PURE SALT” we are exalted to the next degree of sulpher.

The Salt in the beginning phases and is ruled by mars and Pluto, which place the violence of Aries and

Scorpio into rule with this self change. Both Signs represent the same thing in a different fashion as

they are both the most dynamic energies of the signs. The Aries is the Head of knowledge and the

Scorpio is the reproductive organ, so you Will it with the head and manifest it with the seed of birth.

This is the very true for the alchemists into astrology for the beginning stages. Ares is a Cardinal sign

of initiation and Scorpio is the fixed sign of completion and is water. So like the Salt Ares is the

thoughts and Scorpio is the actions of the person that gives life. This is merely the first stage of duality

of fire and water that bring change constantly of which we are born from and die from in the beginning

and the end.