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In many ways, the polarities of masculinity and femininity are similar to those of sect (diurnal/nocturnal); masculinity representing the active, solar principle, and femininity representing the passive (or receptive) lunar principle. But diurnal/nocturnal definitions seem to be more dependent upon the generation of heat (diurnal) or lack of it (nocturnal), whilst the masculine/feminine definitions are more dependent upon dryness (masculinity) or moisture (femininity). It may be that both divisions arose as alternate ways to describe the same essential polarisation that modern astrologers prefer to label ‘positive or negative’. The masculine/feminine definitions are also heavily dependent upon Pythagorean numerological principles, where all the masculine signs, (which are also the diurnal ones), are the odd numbered ones; and all the feminine signs (which are also the nocturnal ones) are even numbered. The masculine planets are the Sun and the superiors:Saturn, Jupiter, Mars; the feminine planets are the inferiors: Moon, Venus; with Mercury being common to both genders. The distinction may be partly based upon the way that the planets emerge from conjunction with the Sun – the superiors always emerge on the right hand side, the Moon always on the left, with Venus and Mercury able to emerge on either side. See ‘diurnal’, ‘occidental’, ‘dexter’ and ‘sect’.

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