Learn more about what evolutionary astrology means to Steven in his classic book Yesterday's Sky.
Now, the term evolutionary astrology is often associated with Jeffrey Wolf Green. And sometimes people have asked me why I continue to use the term. It's a somewhat delicate subject.
First, just as a matter of record, I was using the term “evolutionary astrology” before I'd ever heard of Jeffrey Wolf Green, whose work I respect tremendously. I don't mean to sound even slightly negative about him. But proof of the pudding, just very simply: my first book, The Inner Sky, came out in 1984 and I used the term “evolutionary astrology” many times in that book. That's simply a matter of record. Jeffrey's first book, Pluto: The Evolutionary Journey of the Soul, came out in 1985, a year after my book. And of course, he was using the term “evolutionary astrology.” Meanwhile, there's a gentleman by the name of Raymond Merriman who's currently the president of the International Society for Astrological Research, who himself published a book called Evolutionary Astrology in the late 1970s.
I didn't know about that book, but if anybody were going to claim they originated the term, as near as I could tell it would actually be Raymond Merriman. I think the deeper truth is that the term was kind of floating around in the collective and it essentially embraced any kind of astrology that had two qualities. And one was that it had the tonality of modern psychological astrology but it also, in the second level, integrated it with reincarnation, integrated it with essentially ancient metaphysics. Ray Merriman's work was very different from mine. Mine has been very different from Jeffery Wolf Green's. I think what happened over the years is that I was using the term casually as a kind of a catch-all term, like “modern astrology,” except a little bit more specific.
I think Jeffrey became a bit more proprietary about the term, using it as a kind of product name, which was absolutely fine. For a while in the late 1990s he and I worked together and actually did a couple of books together. I had a conversation with him in which I said, “I'm not sure I'm going to be able to pull this off because the word ‘evolutionary astrology’ or the term has so much momentum in the culture of astrology now, but if you prefer, I would stop using it. I could call my work something else.” And Jeffrey said, “No, it was probably too late for that and it didn't matter that much anyway.”
Since then, there have been some complexities and some misunderstandings about it. But I continue to use the term. I often try to write it with a lower case “e,” so to speak, and a lower case “a,” rather than the capital “E” and the capital “A” just to let it be a somewhat more generic catch-all term for any kind of astrology that marries modern psychology and ancient metaphysics. To me, that is the essence of evolutionary astrology. It's what I've been practicing since the beginning of my career. And I suspect I'll continue until the end of the trail for me.