Astrofaces: Photographs of Faces Grouped by Astrological Factors

This project groups photographs of people by the three most prominent factors in the astrological chart - the Sun, Moon and Ascendant. It asks whether people who share these factors resemble each other significantly. If this is so, then it supports the claim of astrology that time itself has a shape, and that everything that is created at a moment in time has certain inborn characteristics derived from the natural symbolism of that time. It also gives modern science a measure of astrology. This project also suggests that the astrological model is actually the twelve dimensional cosmological model (Theory of Everything) that describes the principles by which everything in the universe appears and functions.


The general hypothesis claims that astrology is the cosmology that modern physicists are seeking, and more specifically, that the astrological model that claims a correspondence between the configuration of heavenly bodies in the sky and earthly events is valid.

The working hypothesis claims that this can be demonstrated with photographs by showing that strong similarities between subjects' birthcharts are also visible in their appearances - that the Shape of Time is visible in our faces.

This correlational study explores whether people who share the same Sun, Moon & Ascendant will resemble each other to a greater degree than those who do not share those factors. It is hoped that these resemblances will be perceptible to viewers and measurable with facial recognition software.


The resemblances that can be seen in the photos are not due to close genetic relationships, and are only correlated to the astrological similarities between the birthtimes of the subjects. This correlation involves astrological factors that are perceptible and measurable. These relationships indicate that Time itself has a shape, a structure of amazing subtlety, and is not simply a progression of random movements of existing material.

This implies that we may be able to prove that we live in an integral, holistic, designed and created world and not an accidental conglomeration of energy and matter. Verification of Astrology would invite modern scientists to approach the metaphysical paradigm.

The metaphysical and mystical traditions say that the physical world is essentially an illusion, and that ultimate reality does not depend upon time and space. Life creates the world as a set of principles and inhabits it, infusing the abstract lines of the world and fleshing it out, activating the qualities of reality - light, color, heat, identity, gravity, form, span, movement, cycles, imprints, ripples and wakes, memory, integrity and unity, duplication, self-similarity, conformity, scale and proportion, balance, relationships, synthesis, expansion, continuity, structure, range, layering, levels, diversity, illumination, inertia, entropy, chaos, etc.

All lives and existences are integral threads of time itself. The time we appear in the world as a unique identity is our 'fingerprint', our stamp, our lifelong cloak and no two times are identical.

Although no two times are identical, times are made of repeating elements (Every Spring and Summer, every systole and diastole, etc..) and therefore they share patterns, so that there are resemblances.

The Shape of Time shows in our faces. The resemblances that can be seen in the photos are correlated to three astrological factors shared by the subjects - the Sun, Moon and Ascendant signs at birth. The photos which cluster on these factors can be viewed as a layer of markers which outlines the patterns of Time. This layer of markers is a correlation between the physical appearance and the configuration of the sky at birth.

Verification of the resemblances and the correlation support the following argument:

  • Astrological factors (eg: zodiac signs, etc) are distinct, perceptible and measurable and we can speak of them as patterns in Time. These patterns are the interactions of the archetypal principles of Time.
  • The existence of this layer of markers means that we partake intimately of the same patterns of Time that are ascribed to the configuration of the sky. It means that anything that is created or born is formed in the patterns of the moment of Time into which it appears as an identity. The creation of each identity in Time involves archetypally symbolic natural principles.
  • This layer of markers shows that Time is not simply the progression of movements of existing energy and material, but that Time can be seen to have a shape with real meaning and physical symbolism that applies at every scale - large and small. Time has a structure of amazing subtlety which is completely inter-related, and to which everything that exists is integral, a condition that includes us as well as the planets and sub-atomic particles.

Verification of the Shape of Time implies that we may be able to prove that we live in an organic and created world and not in an accidental conglomeration of random energy & matter. This will encourage modern science to approach the metaphysical paradigm including the basis of spiritual experience and religious tradition - the awareness that we are participants in a complete and meaningful universe.

Astrology is a cosmology that describes the world as existing within the Shape of Time according to abstract principles which provide a framework for the universe. It is our (Life's) participation that fills out the world and makes it real. Every moment in Time is unique in symbol and meaning. Each life and every existence is an actual thread of Time. Verification of Astrology will bring to light a model for modern science that can serve as a unifying template.

The Education of Children:

K-12 Educators are invited to visit the Groupings site to review a system that uses Astrology to enhance the education of children.

Astrology declares that there exists innate individuality. If this were to become common knowledge, it would work in the educational systems to help strengthen children's individuality and create healthier self-esteem and socialization.

Children suffer from the message of reductionist materialism that says that the world is "nothing but chemicals and energy". A view of the world as an random accident, empty of meaning, is very destructive & disheartening.

In contrast, Astrology tells of an astonishingly comprehensive and subtle integrity of time that includes our temporal lives. When children learn that they are part of, even co-creators of, a living meaningful world, they are strengthened and ennobled. Children thrive when they know that they are important.

Much of the self-image of today's youth is based on a narrow set of images and styles. If children do not closely fit the model, they can be strongly affected in a very negative way. This may contribute to the prevalence of anorexia and the use of steroids and diet drugs in the attempt to transform to fit the socially highlighted models of physical attractiveness. Since this research highlights the natural characteristics and style of each grouping, it points out that there are many different physical styles, and can help widen society's definitions of beauty.

Science & Religion:

Astrology can bridge the divide between science and religion as a cosmological model that includes the living, meaningful character of the universe. If modern science can outgrow the reductionist materialist view, then religious people will be able to outgrow their fearful stance toward modern science.

Science & Technology:

If facial recognition software analysis yields indices of similarity within groups that are significantly greater than those between groups, then modern science will have statistical verification of a correlation between physical measurements and a set of Astrological factors. We will have measurable, duplicable & verifiable indicators of the validity of Astrology.

This would invite scientists to openly explore the metaphysical paradigm, starting with Astrology, and to re-examine the extant Astrological research in a new light.

Astrology describes a world made of an integral set of principles. If physicists seriously examine these principles, they could soon find the coveted mathematical 'Grand Unification Theory' or 'Theory of Everything'. This will certainly change modern technology. It is speculated that the 'GUT' or 'TOE' would lead to virtually free energy, which in turn would tremendously improve our social systems by dramatically simplifying the world's economies.

Those in the fields of psychology and medicine will also be encouraged to investigate astrological definitions and research regarding personality and character and the connection with the body.

Astrological Birthtime Rectification:

One benefit would be the appearance of a new tool for use in Astrological birth time rectification. In addition to the usual methods, progressions and transits, the astrologer could also use this kind of photographic database to check for a resemblance.

Close or long-term groupings (eg: space exploration, rescue teams):

Astrology can be used to determine which individuals will work together more happily, harmoniously and efficiently in long term projects - for example in spacecraft traveling several months to explore other planets.

Police Departments sketch artists:

This sort of database could be incorporated into the identification procedure which is used to recreate the faces of perpetrators from the descriptions of witnesses. It is well known that recognition is more reliable than description. The witness or victim of the crime could browse through the groups of photos, and find the group that most closely resembled their remembered image of the perpetrator. The police artist would then have a closely matched set of models from which to start. They could then focus on individual characteristics.

The photos can also help in cases where age progression is needed. Children who have been missing for a long time change, but in predictable ways. The photos of older people in the same groupings can help focus the graphic prediction.

Reconstructive Surgery:

A database of this sort would be of practical benefit to those cosmetic surgeons who perform reconstructive surgery on perinatally deformed children. The surgeon could incorporate the photos of the birth time group into their study of the patient's facial structure when preparing the model for the surgical reconstruction.

Facial Recognition Software:

The next generation of facial recognition software might be improved by the incorporation of the spectrum of astrological archetypal faces.


The Sun, Moon and Ascendant signs are the three most prominent factors in a chart and so were chosen as the threshold criteria for visual resemblance in this study. If more factors (Mercury, Venus & Mars, the house positions of the planets, etc) were included in the set of threshold indicators, the resemblances would become even more vivid. The threshold was limited to the Sun, Moon and Ascendant because of the numbers of people involved. Only about 2000 people share the same Sun, Moon Ascendant, Mercury, Venus and Mars, and although the resemblances would be striking, it would be very difficult to organize the project at that level.

There are 1728 combinations (123) of Sun, Moon & Ascendant. Of the more than humans on earth, approximately 3.400.000 share each Sun, Moon and Ascendant configuration. Of course, these people belong to both genders, a range of ages, ethnic and racial groups, and also have planets rising and in conjunction with the Lights (the Sun & Moon). Thus the appearances are modified further.

Organization of photos

  • Photos and birthdata are submitted by self-chosen participants and by astrologers. Some respondents send only the signs of the Sun, Moon and Ascendant, while others send complete birth data - date, time and location.
  • If the birth data are available, the Sun, Moon and Ascendant signs are calculated in the Tropical system.
  • All photos are then labeled with the subjects' Sun, Moon & Ascendant signs and uploaded to the complete database on the web. All photos are included in the database. Photos for which the moon or ascendant signs are unknown are labeled with a question mark.
  • The photos are also evaluated for inclusion in the "Clearest Groups" pages which are prepared by the researcher with comments to summarize and illustrate the point of the study.
  • Photos from the same row are included in the Clearest Groups if there is an easily perceptible resemblance.
  • Photos from adjacent rows may be placed together with speculation about the accuracy of the recorded birth time. These are clearly labeled. See the section on Problems for a detailed explanation of this speculation.
  • A few photos are placed from non-adjacent rows to point out similarities that are not simply identical SMA - eg opposite moons. These are clearly labeled.
  • A set of cgi programs create web pages to display the photos that match the selected view. If requested, the respondents' or contributor's name, email or homepage are visible beneath the photo in the raw data views (Select Photos,SM Rows,SMA Rows).

Analysis with Facial Recognition Software (FRS)

Luxand software is a commercial FRS. They offer the FaceSDK, which includes a "LookAlike" application. The software 'enrolls' a list of photos into a temporary database. The limitations of the software must be taken into account as shown by Control Group I Software Test, see above. It is very limited as to the posture of the face, and cannot account for strong difference in expressions, such as wide smiles and sober looks. The selected photo is then chosen as the 'Match' face and compared to all the other photos in the enrolled list. The software ranks all the photos in the list by an index of similarity from 0 to 100 to the selected photo, the 'Match face'. The further down the index, the less similarity. For example, a photo compared to itself usually gets an index of 100. However, one fuzzy photo, 121212-1, actually got a lower score (10.8) when compared to itself! This can be considered a bug to be resolved at some point. Another bug would be the inconsistency shown as non-reciprocal evaluation. If photo A is the match face, and reports an index of 60.3 with photo B, then when photo B is the match face, it ought to report an index of 60.2 with photo A. This is not the case as seen in Control Groups II and III with tables.

Control Group I is a Software Test assembled from those subjects who sent multiple photos. The current photo for each subject is matched to the old photos and the rankings are displayed underneath each one. This shows that the software ranks photos of the same person differently, and gives an idea of what to expect as a realistic ranking level for similarities.

Control Group II consists of 12 Random Photos selected from the entire population. This group includes only photos of females. Photos must be excluded if the FRS cannot distinguish a face, if the photo quality is not sufficient for the software. Many SMA groups will be represented. There will be only one photo from any of the 144 Sun Moon groups. Photos in this group are processed by the FRS for an average index of similarity. Each photo will be compared to all the others in the list. The highest ranking will be reported under each photo. The Control Group Total will be an average of these highest rankings.

Control Group III is drawn from Zodiac Faces. Since each photo in Zodiac Faces is supposed to have Sun, Moon & Ascendant all in one sign, they should not share any signs. Thus, the index of similarity is expected to be low.

The Experimental Group consists of series of photos that are found in Clearest Groups. They belong to the same SMA groups, with a few exceptions included where good visual similarity was perceived and an astrological link was present, such as opposite suns, moons and ascendants. The Experimental Group also makes allowances for late birth time recording, as explained in photo notes in the Clearest Groups.

Flicker Test - SM Aries Virgo Flicker Test - SM Leo Pisces Flicker Test - SM Aquarius Aquarius Experimental Group Selection & Flicker Test
The first step in the selection of photos for the Experimental Group was by shared SMA and visual resemblance, as seen in the Clearest Groups.

The next step was 'flicker tests'. If two photos share the same SMA or have a significant relationship and also have a resemblance, there are arranged so that they can be switched quickly in the same frame back and forth many times as shown by the example to the right. (This is the same method of watching for movement which indicate meteors, comets and planets among photos of star fields in the sky.) If there is an easy transition when flickering between two photos then they seem to be good candidates to yield high ranks by the FRS. Photos that have a jarring transition can be expected to yield lower rankings. Here are three examples of an easy transition. They can be found in Clearest Groups on the pages for Sun Aquarius & Moon Aquarius, Sun Leo & Moon Pisces, Sun Aries & Moon Virgo. Yes, those are two different people in each animated photo pair, according to their emails, names and birthdates!

Preliminary Findings

Even though this is an uncontrolled, informal pilot stage of the study, most people recognize the similarities between those in the clearest SMA groups. One woman, when seeing a photo of someone else in her row, described herself as feeling "a kind of Deja Vu'". Several people have noted, when seeing a photo of an older person in their row, that they feel they will resemble the other person when they reach that age. The resemblances found in the identical groups tend to support the hypothesis that the Sun, Moon & Ascendant are indeed all expressed in the physical appearance. The degree of similarity when the Sun, Moon and Ascendant match is about the same as a strong family resemblance between siblings or parents and children. The similarities seem to show in the general shape and expressive forms of the face and features.

Facial Recognition Software Analysis

Initial testing with Facial Recognition Software yielded some intriguing results. The FRS was Luxand's LookAlikes application (see Methods, above) While the LookAlikes application did find several pretty good similarities where we expected them, others missed the mark.

2011 January 6 ~ There is a problem with the FRS software: The resemblance index is not commutative or reciprocal. This was discovered when matching faces in both control groups. 12 faces were enrolled and each face in turn was matched to all the others. See the Control Group tables below. When matching face A, enrolled face B will give an index ranking, eg: 45.2. Then when matching face B, enrolled face A will give a different index, 18.8. This inconsistency says that we cannot yet rely on the scores.

There are, however, positive trends - the scores for Control Group I are quite high, those for Control group II are medium and those for Control Group III are low, all as expected. The Experimental Group scores tended towards the high range. So, while at this point (2011 January), analysis with FRS is not yet reliable or presentable, it does seem promising. We will continue exploring the possibilities of FRS as the techniques, algorithms & software hopefully improve. Hopefully future developments will include better analysis of the expressive shapes of the face.

Control Group I ~ 12 People / 3 Photos Each ~ Average ranking (middle row) 85.75
Control Group I is a software baseline test. In order to get an idea of what the software can show us, we apply it to several photos of the same person. Here are 12 people, each one represented by three photos - 1 person per column. Some people have sent several photos. The top row contains the base photos. The second and third rows are analyzed for similarity to the top photo. The software gives a different index of similarity for each photo of the same person. This range of indices gives a context for the range of experimental rankings.

Note the wide irregular variations in certain rankings. Count from the left:
Col 3, Row 3: Rank 0.19; Col 8, Row 3: Rank: 2.55; Col 9, Row 3: Rank: 9.29; Col 12 Row 3: Rank 0.36.













rank: 100

rank: 99.8

rank: 65.2

rank: 93.8

rank: 87.9

rank: 70.0

rank: 100

rank: 44.1

rank: 81.1

rank: 99.8

rank: 100

rank: 87.4

rank: 99.8

rank: 77.1

rank: 0.19

rank: 46.5

rank: 22.7

rank: 52.6

rank: 98.2

rank: 2.55

rank: 9.29

rank: 34.4

rank: 95.9

rank: 0.36
Control Group II ~ 12 Random Photos ~ Average ranking 23.52
Control Group II photos are selected somewhat randomly. "Somewhat randomly" means that since the number of photos suitable for FRS is limited, it was necessary to check the quality and select good photos. All the photos are of females. If a randomly selected photo belongs to a Sun Moon group which is already represented, then it is discarded and replaced with another random selection. Each selected photo is then compared to all the others in the list and the similarity is given a ranking index. The average of all those ranked indices is placed under the selected photo. The Control Group Total Average Rank is again an average of all those column index rankings.

Note: There seems to be a major problem with the FRS software: The resemblance index is not commutative or reciprocal. See the note above at the beginning of the Findings section. The top right triangle ought to mirror the bottom left triangle divided on the diagonal line of dashes.

There are some substantial rankings between photos that have no strong apparent resemblance. So obviously this FRS is not measuring the same things that people do when we recognize faces. Note that the columns for 060309-6 and 100603-4 show high indices of resemblance to most of the photos. Why is this?













010110-1 --- 32.8 26.6 45.7 7.47 46.9 10.5 7.54 4.58 4.48 1.97 46.6
020509-1 9.37 --- 26.2 18.7 20.9 54.6 1.58 9.46 40.2 19.2 20.2 19.3
030408-3 1.26 64.1 --- 0.79 3.85 45 0.39 2.04 68.5 74 93.2 11.9
040210-2 25.6 0.92 3.63 --- 1.28 49.8 51 16.3 0.32 78.5 1.6 51.9
050302-4 0.44 23.4 39.8 5.85 --- 51 0.14 0.22 2.23 27.9 0.33 31.1
060309-6 3.59 49.2 19.2 47.1 28 --- 12.4 1.71 5.03 73.3 56.5 9.03
070905-3 4.98 2.35 2.61 30.2 0.19 1.12 --- 24 0.5 23.4 0.45 2.67
081005-4 1.78 18.7 3.72 39 0.22 0.98 41.8 --- 0.15 9.29 2.29 3.23
091112-1 0.28 3.76 59.6 0.17 6.6 45.7 0.2 0.39 --- 26 70.5 4.1
100603-4 4.38 37.1 80.9 76.1 19.8 37.3 30.7 1.71 93.7 --- 77.8 29.3
110810-5 1.38 17.6 39.9 5.97 0.35 27.2 0.18 3.38 86.3 7.34 --- 0.3
120212-1 11.6 1.11 1.18 71.7 7.14 35.9 21.6 5.18 1.66 76.9 0.44 ---
6.37 21.62 30.22 30.92 15.63 41.2 14.14 5.96 27.85 40.75 29.70 17.91
Control Group III ~ 12 Photos from Zodiac Faces ~ Average ranking 9.27
Control Group III has photos that were drawn only from the Zodiac Faces - those photos with Sun Moon and Ascendant all in the same sign. Each selected photo is then compared to all the others and the similarity is given a ranking index. The Total Average is again an average of all those index rankings. Selected photos were all female except Aquarius, which has only one photo, so we had no choice.

Note: There seems to be a major problem with the FRS software: The resemblance index is not commutative or reciprocal. See the note above at the beginning of the Findings section. The top right triangle ought to mirror the bottom left triangle divided on the diagonal line of dashes.

* In this table, most of the averages are quite low. This fits expectations because each photo is a Zodiac Face with Sun, Moon & Ascendant all in one sign so they do not share any signs.

* Another interesting point is that many of the high scores are between photos which are trines, sextiles & opposites. Again, the scores here ought to be mirrored across the line of dashes, but they are not.
  • column Aries ~ trine row Leo (37.1)
  • col Taurus ~ sextile row Cancer (38.2)
  • col Gemini ~ opposite row Sagittarius (69.6) (Note: does not equal col Sagittarius opposite row Gemini, below)
  • col Cancer ~ sextile row Virgo (49.6) (Note: does not equal col Virgo sextile row Cancer, below)
  • col Leo ~ trine row Aries (15.8)
  • col Virgo ~ sextile row Cancer (74.9)
  • col Libra ~ opposite row Aries (19.2) / sextile row Leo (28.8) / trine row Aquarius (69.3)
  • col Sagittarius ~ opposite row Gemini (84)













010101-2 - - - 35.8 0.19 55.2 15.8 27.6 19.2 0.25 0.31 7.14 1.58 0.06
020202-3 1.05 - - - 0.95 55 3.93 7.9 6.28 0.26 0.32 25.3 0.22 0.1
030303-1 0.15 0.92 - - - 0.12 8.35 0.25 0.27 0.28 84 71.5 0.07 0.08
040404-6 5.18 38.2 0.12 - - - 20.7 74.9 26.1 0.18 0.5 12.6 4.53 0.06
37.1 12.6 0.68 27.8 - - - 1.54 28.8 0.21 0.46 20.1 3.12 0.05
060606-3 10.1 2.04 0.2 49.6 47.7 - - - 6.1 0.48 4.1 3.68 1.56 0.18
070707-3 11.8 1.34 0.37 39.6 8.65 9.03 - - - 0.18 0.17 3.19 5.79 0.06
080808-2 0.16 0.19 0.7 0.23 0.35 0.25 0.23 - - - 5.55 0.19 0.06 0.09
090909-6 0.2 0.45 69.6 0.78 1.6 3.93 0.29 6.8 - - - 23 0.3 0.1
101010-3 0.69 6.8 48.1 2.82 13 4.93 0.96 0.2 5.18 - - - 0.13 0.07
111111-1 0.15 0.3 0.2 0.48 0.17 1.17 69.3 0.07 0.19 0.25 - - - 0.12
121212-1 0.24 0.16 0.07 0.19 0.09 0.2 0.42 0.14 0.16 0.18 0.13 - - -
Totals: 6.07 8.98 11.01 21.07 10.94 11.97 14.35 0.82 9.17 15.19 1.59 0.09
The Experimental Group ~ 58 Photos from Clearest Groups ~ Rankings under each photo
These photos are drawn from the Clearest Groups. They were selected by SMA and visual evaluation. Some of them have different SMA signs, in which case there are notes and speculations in Clearest Groups to explain the presence of the photo in the row. Here they are tested for resemblance by the FRS. A high index indicates a strong resemblance. Keep in mind the levels established in the Control Groups and the apparent difficulties of the software.

The photos in the left column below were selected and compared against the list. The photos on the right each has a ranking. These were the highest rankings for each set of photos. The high rankings indicate that the software considered them better resemblances.

match this


rank: 44.7

match this
(asc gem, sag?)


rank: 85.4
(sun, moon opposite)

rank: 67.9
(asc tri, sxt?)

match this


rank: 39.6
(moon opposite)
(asc lib, late bt?)

match this


rank: 38.6
(moon opposite)
(asc sag, late bt?)

match this


rank: 39.9
(moon, asc opposite)

rank: 20.4
(asc leo, late bt?)

rank: 17.6

match this


rank: 16.3

match this


rank: 23.5

match this


rank: 57.0
(asc sag, late bt?)

match this


rank: 45.3
(asc gem, late bt?)

match this


rank: 26.5

match this
(asc pis, late bt?)


rank: 20.4

match this


rank: 30.7

match this


rank: 36.4
(asc ari, late bt?)

rank: 70.8
(asc tri)

match this


rank: 21.7

match this


rank: 47.2

match this


rank: 19.0

match this


rank: 38.6
(asc trine)

rank: 23.8
(asc opposite)

match this


rank: 75.8
(asc sq pis / tri aqu?)

rank: 4.98

match this


rank: 44.8

match this


rank: 16.3

match this


rank: 42.7

match this


rank: 11.7
(asc can, late bt?)

match this


rank: 28.2
(asc opposite)

match this


rank: 45.0

rank: 18.6

match this


rank: 92.7
(asc opposite)

rank: 54.6

Four Additional Differences ~ The Importance of SM House Positions

Even when subjects' Sun, Moon and Ascendant are identical there are four differences that can be present. These are the house positions of the Sun and Moon.

For example, a subject may have an Aries 'zodiac face': Sun, Moon and Ascendant in Aries. However, the Sun in Aries could be in 1st house or 12th house, and the Moon in Aries could be in 1st house or 12th house. Thus, even though the subjects share the same Sun, Moon & Ascendant sign positions, there are four possible subgroups due to the house positions of the Lights (Sun & Moon).

Graphic Example of 4 House Positions of Sun & Moon in One Sign
Sun in 12th, Moon in 12th | Sun in 12th, Moon in 1st | Sun in 1st, Moon in 12th | Sun in 1st, Moon in 1st

In a finer-grained stage, these would be identified. It is expected that there would be a closer resemblance between those subjects who share house positions as well as sign positions of the Sun and Moon. For one possible example see Clearest Similarities and select the SMA group Sun-Sco/Moon-Can/Asc-Lib There seem to be two sub-groups. It is also possible that the subjects in one of the subgroups simply had their births recorded several minutes late and they actually have Virgo rising. You can also see a good example with the SMA Group Sun Aries/Moon Virgo/Asc Gem. There is one woman with the opposite signs and a strong resemblance.

Planets in the first house contribute resemblances and differences:

A planet in the first house can be expected to contribute a great deal to the appearance and to a certain resemblance. For example, two people with Mars in the first house will share something in their appearance and character regardless of the respective signs of the planet.

Conversely, a planet can contribute to a difference in appearance. Two subjects may share SMA, but a planet in the first house of one subject will modify the appearance strongly.

A difference in 'look' may also be expected when a planet is transiting the subject's first house when the subject is photographed. For example, most people with Aquarius or Capricorn rising who were photographed in 2003 will have Neptune transiting through their first house. They may seem to have quite a different look than in their photographs of previous years.

Additional Shared Planets:

It's likely that some of the better resemblances are due to shared Mercury or Venus. For example, for each Sun sign position, there are three possible Mercury positions - the preceding sign, the same sign and the succeeding sign. This gives three more groupings. It would be possible to categorize these once there are many more photos.

The Part of Fortune may play a role:

Another sub-group related to the groups described above may be indicated by the house position of the Part of Fortune. This is the point on the zodiac that has the same angular relationship to the Ascendant as the Moon has to the Sun. Some astrologers use it as a point of synthesis of the Sun, Moon & Ascendant.

For example, two subjects with the same SMA could have a wide difference between the angle of the Sun and Moon. In one chart, the Fortuna might be in the ninth house, while in the other chart, it could be in the tenth. This would indicate a significant difference in outlook and typical expression. Fortuna in the ninth would indicate an attraction to sports and outdoor life, while a position a few degrees later in the tenth house would indicate an attraction to business and perhaps political life. The appearance would also reflect the differences.

Resemblances due to shared ascendant element or opposite ascendants:

If the Sun and Moon are in the same signs, and the Ascendants are different but in the same element (fire, earth, air, water) or opposite, there can be a certain resemblance.

If the Sun or Moon or Ascendant of one subject are opposite those of the other subject, there can also be a striking resemblance. Opposites signs are related. For example see the Clearest Groups page for Sun Taurus, Moon Gemini, Asc Libra. Included is a Sun Taurus, Moon Sagittarius, whose Asc was recorded in Scorpio but seems to actually be Libra. The Moons are opposite. Another good example in the Clearest Groups is the group Sun Aries, Moon Virgo and Asc Gemini. Included is a photo labeled with the opposite Sun, Moon and Ascendant.

Ruler of the Ascendant may contribute to stronger resemblances:

Another key to the stronger resemblances may be the sign position of the ruler of the Ascendant sign. For example: Mercury is the Ruler of Gemini. Thus, you may see a stronger resemblance between two subjects who have Sun Leo, Moon Cancer, Asc Gemini with Mercury in Cancer than between either of them and another subject with the same SMA with Mercury in Leo.
Thanks to Astrologer Jen Luffman for noting the importance of the Ascendant Rulerships.

Photographic Difficulties:

The most serious problem is the inconsistent quality of the photographs and the general limitations of a single photo to capture the features and expression. Some of the photographs are of photo portrait quality while others are simple snapshots. Few are in a pose suitable for computerized measurements.

An improved stage of the study would include photos of subjects in standard poses, front and profile. Later, the study could include video of the SMA groups actually grouped together and interacting. The movements, expressions and speech patterns as well as physical forms would then be evident to viewers.

Birth Data Problems:

Another serious problem is inaccurate birthdata and lack of verification. The first breath is the indicator of the birth of a life. If a birthtime is recorded even a few minutes late, the error can produce a chart with an incorrect Ascendant and incorrect house positions for the planets.

There are probably many photos submitted where the Ascendant (birthtime) was not exactly known but approximated. These do not actually belong in the group to which their birthdata assigned them, but most likely to the preceding group. Some respondents send only their Sun, Moon and Ascendant. The accuracy of the calculations is not verifiable in these cases. Errors also appear when someone mistakes AM and PM when calculating a chart.

A Small Population.

A small sample population is always considered a detriment to any study. Hopefully this problem will eventually resolve itself.

Time zones present problems for astrologers:

Irregular Shapes - One problem with recorded birthtime is that the system of time zones is irregular in shape, since it is arranged politically and not geographically. (see an atlas for details and a good laugh.) Time zones ought to correspond to lines of longitude.

Wide Areas - Time zones also assign a single hour to a wide area. However, the sky moves continuously over our heads. Thus ten actual minutes can make a great difference in a chart. For example, even though it may be 10:00 pm in New York and Philadelphia at the same time (EST), a planet will rise over the horizon first in New York and many minutes later in Philadelphia. Calculation systems try to work with this by using the longitude of the birthplace and correcting for the difference, but the results can be unreliable due to the irregular shape of the zones. In addition to this, some areas use summer hours while others do not, giving more room for error.

Tropical vs Sidereal zodiacs.

There is an ongoing debate about the position of the first point of Aries. There are at least three obvious possibilities - the tropical system which uses the vernal equinox, the sidereal system which uses the constellation Aries, or some synthesis or compromise between the two. If some of the photos match and some do not, the difference may be due to the overlapping thresholds of the signs in the two systems. Studies such as Astrofaces may be able to help clarify the issue. Astrofaces currently displays photographs with birth data calculated in the Tropical system. Apart from this study, this is not as critical an issue to chart interpretation as might be thought. The aspects between the planets do not differ nor do the house positions.

Facial Recognition Software Problems:

Another problem is the stage of development of facial recognition software. We can expect the software to improve and be more applicable to this study.

Perception and Bias.

It is hoped that many photos in each row will dispel the bias. The similarities between the photos are perceived by some people only uncertainly. They insist that any similarity is "merely coincidence". The perceptive differences are likely due to individual differences in visual sensitivity or artistic perception, the ability to recognize facial features, and other such natural differences in perception. This may be an example of "some get it, some don't" like those little computerized images that everyone has seen with wavy lines and patterns that resolve into 3-D images for some people and escape others completely.

Objective measurements obtained by computerized systems may help clarify these issues and remove the argument that the perception of similarity is due to suggestion.

Religious Bias.
  • Most of the orthodox Christian, Islamic and Sikh traditions deny the validity of Astrology.
  • The Hindu, Buddhist and Jewish traditions accept or have no inherent bias against the validity of Astrology. Many other local religious traditions also have no bias against astrology.
Goals for Future Stages

This study needs to be formalized and standardized with computer analysis of the photos using facial recognition software. At that point it will be a suitable model for duplicate studies which would be expected to further verify findings and develop new techniques.

Toward this goal, the Astrofaces study seeks affiliations with organizations such as universities, hospitals or police departments that have access to many subjects' photos and birth data.

The computer analysis will use either facial recognition software or the sort of software that produces some of the visual effects you may have seen on television shows and in advertisements. The commercial advertisements in which one person's face changes into another's face are produced by this kind of software. In order to perform the illusion, the software measures the facial features and mathematically calculates the points in between the features of the source and destination photographs.

When good quality, similarly posed photos are available, the computer software can compare the measurements of the subjects' faces.

The uniform quality photographs would be subjected to the computer for measurements such as distance between features, relative size of features, categorized shapes of features and the face in general.

At that point, objective statistics can be derived regarding the differences between faces within each group and between groups.

The measurements would be compared statistically within groups and between groups that were astrologically similar and dissimilar. The statistics would be examined for significance.

It will not be necessary to photograph the entire population of thousands of possible subjects.

The birthdata of the entire population can be charted, and the Sun, Moon and Ascendant (SMA) found for each subject.

Several large groups could be assembled using the subjects with the most reliable birthdata. These groups could then be photographed and analysed.

    For example:
  1. Out of several thousand birth data, thirty six consecutive SMA groups with twenty subjects in each group could be drawn. There are two levels of groups here. Comparisons between the larger groups are expected to exhibit greater differences.
      For example:
    • Sun Capricorn, Moon Scorpio, with all twelve Ascendants - Aries to Pisces.
    • Sun Gemini, Moon Gemini, all twelve Ascendants - Aries to Pisces.
    • Sun Leo, Moon Cancer, all twelve Ascendants - Aries to Pisces
  2. These 720 subjects would be photographed.
  3. Each photo could then be analysed by the facial recognition software and compared to the others to obtain indices of similarity within and between the groups. In addition, one average index could be found within a group while many indices would be found for comparisons between groups.
  4. A set of baseline indices would be obtained by the the comparisons of several sets of two photos selected at random.
  5. The resulting indices - within groups and between groups - could then be analysed for statistical significance against the baseline indices.
  6. The groups can also be recorded with video cameras, which would show similarities much more clearly than still photos. Body language, mannerisms and speech patterns would also be present.

Summary of Project Goals.
    The goals of the project are to have a controlled study with:
  • A large population.
  • Accurate, verified birthdata with distance of genetic relationships verified.
  • A photo facility capable of processing quality photographs.
  • Photographs of a uniform pose and quality.
  • Photos clustered by gender & age group.
  • Computer facial recognition analysis performed on the photographs.
  • The results of the computer measurements subjected to statistical analysis.

Historical Notes
  • In 1978 Rick Brightfield and Mary Orser published a book titled What's my Sign? with an artist's illustrations of people's faces according to their zodiac signs.
    Thanks to author Rynn Berry for the notification.

  • The book 'Recent Advances in Natal Astrology - A critical review 1900-1976', compiled by Geoffrey Dean, PhD and Arthur Mather, included collaborators such as Robert Hand, John Addey and Baldur Ebertin and:
    • Astrologers Edith Wangemann & Hans Stein who depicted an artist's interpretations around pages 404 - 408 of "Planetary Effects on Facial Appearance"
    • A reference (page 446) to another book - "Famous Heads" (published in 1959 by Bertelsmann-Verlag), which contains photographs and birth dates for 3200 famous men and women.
    Thanks to John Gilbert for the notification.

© M.Dovdovan 2001
  • We are born at a given moment, in a given place and, like vintage years of wine, we have the qualities of the year and of the season of which we are born. Astrology does not lay claim to anything more.
    Carl Jung
  • The cosmos is a vast living body, of which we are still parts. The sun is a great heart whose tremors run through our smallest veins. The moon is a great nerve center from which we quiver forever. Who knows the power that Saturn has over us, or Venus? But it is a vital power, rippling exquisitely through us all the time.
    D.H. Lawrence
  • At the moment I am looking into astrology, which seems indispensable for a proper understanding of mythology. There are strange and wondrous things in these lands of darkness. Please, don't worry about my wanderings in these infinitudes. I shall return laden with rich booty for our knowledge of the human psyche.
    Carl Jung
  • The fact that astrology nevertheless yields valid results proves that it is not the apparent positions of the stars which work, but rather the times which are measured or determined by arbitrarily named stellar positions. Time thus proves to be a stream of energy filled with qualities and not, as our philosophy would have it, an abstract concept or precondition of knowledge.
    Carl Jung, letter to B. Baur, Jan. 29, 1934
  • A physician without a knowledge of Astrology has no right to call himself a physician.
  • We need not feel ashamed of flirting with the zodiac. The zodiac is well worth flirting with.
    D.H. Lawrence

  • The fellow that can only see a week ahead is always the popular fellow, for he is looking with the crowd. But the one that can see years ahead, he has a telescope but he can't make anybody believe that he has it.
    Will Rogers, The Autobiography of Will Rogers
  • To the medical man, astrology is invaluable in diagnosing diseases and prescribing a remedy, for it reveals the hidden cause of all ailments.
    Max Heindel
  • Millionaires don't use Astrology, billionaires do.
    J.P. Morgan
  • Astrology is just a finger pointing at reality.
    Steven Forrest
  • Astrology is like religion itself, in a very equivocal state. There is a well-grounded reason for belief that it is a truth; but it is impossible for any man to read the details with accuracy. The quackery of astrology lies, like Pharisaical religion, in over pretensions.
    James Elishama Smith, The Coming Man

  • Astrology is like a weather report; it tells you what conditions you're likely to face in the future. If the weatherman says it's probably going to rain, you bring an umbrella. If you follow that advice, you won't get wet.
    Lee Goldberg, Mr. Monk and the Blue Flu
  • Astrology is like a map. Like a roadmap, astrology is meant to be a useful tool to help guide you to wherever you want to go.
    Pila Of Hawaii, The Secrets & Mysteries of Hawaii
  • Failure or success seem to have been allotted to men by their stars. But they retain the power of wriggling, of fighting with their star or against it, and in the whole universe the only really interesting movement is this wriggle.
    E.M. Forster
  • "The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves, that we are underlings." Julius Caesar (I, ii)
    William Shakespeare
  • Before one accepts spirituality, astrology is very powerful, like a lion.
    Then when one enters into a deeper spiritual life, astrology becomes a tiny household cat.

    Sri Chinmoy

  • There is no better boat than a horoscope to help a man cross over the sea of life.
    Varaha Mihira
  • Seeing our confusion, ancient sages like Parashara, Jaimini and Bhrigu bestowed the great intuitive science of astrology on humankind. In India astrology is called the eye of the Veda because with its help we're no longer blind to the forces of karma that drive our lives and determine the circumstances we live in, as well as shaping our attitudes and relationships. The sages themselves don't need astrology because they can see directly into the heart of reality. But astrology is like a prosthetic limb for the rest of us who're confined to far more limited states of awareness. It allows us to foresee the challenges and opportunities ahead as we pass (or fail) the curricula of the cosmic university.
    Linda Johnsen, A Thousand Suns

כי־אראה שמיך מעשי אצבעתיך ירח וכוכבים אשר כוננתה׃
מה־אנוש כי־תזכרנו ובן־אדם כי תפקדנו׃
תהילים 8:3

"When I consider thy Heavens,
the work of thy fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which thou hast ordained;
What is man that thou art mindful of him?"
Psalms 8:3

לכל זמן ועת לכל-חפץ תחת השמים.
עת ללדת ועת למות עת לטעת ועת לעקור נטוע.
עת להרוג ועת לרפוא עת לפרוץ ועת לבנות.
עת לבכות ועת לשחוק עת ספוד ועת רקוד.
עת להשליך אבנים ועת כנוס אבנים עת לחבוק ועת לרחק מחבק.
עת לבקש ועת לאבד עת לשמור ועת להשליך.
עת לקרוע ועת לתפור עת לחשות ועת לדבר.
עת לאהב ועת לשנא עת מלחמה ועת שלום.

"To everything a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven
A time to be born, and a time to die;
A time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal;
A time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
A time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose;
A time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew;
A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate;
A time of war, and a time of peace."
Ecclesiastes 3:1 - 3:8