The Role of the Ascendant and M.C.
in Esoteric Astrology
A basic premise of esoteric astrology is that we should distinguish between a personality led through life circumstances by the soul Ray, when it will function predominantly through the MC and work from the outside in, and the soul-infused personality which works through the Ascendant and functions as a conscious soul from the inside out.
The M.C. and 10th house govern how we function in the objective world, and how easy or difficult it may be to achieve some recognizable contribution to humanity's progressive evolution.
The Ascendant and 1st house is how we relate personally to the world, and is not generally seen as a signpost to our life achievements because most of us are negatively polarized to our life events which just happen to us. Only when we begin to measure some soul awareness do we begin to adjust this polarity, and as we allow the creative soul to more fully determine our life path, we are then given the chance to work consciously with our soul and its Ray - and create the life our soul wants for us.
In both cases the soul will seek to guide the personality to achieve its motives, as decreed before incarnation. The difference is that the conscious soul has a positive and projective influence on our outer lives, and creates life according to soul purpose, rather than the personality which is negatively polarized and is therefore subject to a life created by the soul and adjusted according to how one reacts to these incoming energies through the use of freewill.
The difference between the Ascendant and M.C. in this case then depends on awareness, because as we become more aware of our soul energy, we begin to project it into our outer lives consciously through our Ascendant - we start to identify with the motivations of our soul instead of the motivations of our personality.
"The evolutionary process is actually a process of identification."
The conscious soul approach employing the Ascendant can produce real good in the world at a soular level, producing positive change way beyond the usual expectations and limitations of physical form; whereas the unconscious soul approach through the M.C. - and the best that can be hoped for until one seriously commits to the spiritual Path - is a struggle for soul achievement awakened by caring for others, and serving within society on a personality level. This is doing good, but lacks the potential to make substantial change in racial karma which can only come through conscious alignment with the Will-To-Good, or Divine Purpose.
What drives us toward becoming Conscious Soul Incarnate is this duality of soul motive compared to personality motive. This is the essential instrument of the soul which causes the friction or karmic suffering that is necessary for our progress towards ultimate 'reversal', changing from outer to inner awareness, and working creatively as Conscious Soul Incarnate through the Ascendant rather than as an unconscious instrument of the soul through the M.C.