Category Archives: astrology

The Sixth Pentacle of the Sun

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The Sixth Pentacle of the Sun

6th Pentacle of the Sun

The Sixth Pentacle of the Sun – It serveth excellently for the operation of invisibility, when correctly made.

To render yourself “invisible” less noticeable, indistinct, indistinguishable or to hide yourself when doing spiritual work that you don’t want detected.

Made during the Sun being Exalted in Aries. A favorable election.

for Sale – $25

The Second Pentacle of Mars

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The Second Pentacle of Mars

2nd Pentacle of Mars

The Second Pentacle of Mars – This Pentacle serveth with great success against all kinds of diseases, it it be applied unto the afflicted part.

For healing and health.

Made during Mars in Rulership in Scorpio, further dignified face. A favorable election.

For sale $25

Sixth Pentacle of Mars

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Sixth Pentacle of Mars

Sixth Pentacle of Mars
Sixth Pentacle of Mars – It hath so great virtue that being armed therewith, if thou art attacked by any one, thou shalt neither be injured nor wounded when thou fightest with him, and his own weapon shall turn against him

For Reversing harmful spiritual attacks

Made during Mars in Rulership in scorpio, dignified by Term and Face a very favorable election. Penned in red ink and laminated for durability.

For sale. $25

Attention “trad craft”

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You’re “trad” isn’t any older then Wicca. “Trad Craft” is not ancient. It is as much an invention of the early 20th century as Gardnerian Wicca.
Only the Golden Dawn, and the OTO and related traditions are relatively new, although, they are older then Gardnerian and “Trad Craft” having started in the late 19th century.
The Grimoires, the 3 books of Occult Philosophy by Cornelius Agrippa, The books of Astrological magic and thought written by various authors, the Picatrix, and other classics of Hermetic Philosophy, are older then “Trad Craft” The PGM is older then “Trad Craft.” The roots of Hermeticism in Mediterranean Antiquity are older then “Trad Craft.” The Vedas, various Sutras, Mahabharata is older then “Trad Craft.” The Chaldean Oracles are older the “Trad Craft.” Actual Folk Magic of actual specific cultures from around Europe, and in the United States is older then “Trad Craft” and some of them are living traditions that are practiced to this day.

But, None of this matters, In my day to day life, and interactions with spiritual workers of all types, I rarely if ever need to mention it, because I don’t need the the claims of “antiquity” or “Tradition” or “Old” to feel good about my spiritual practice. I’m fine with it being modern, because it works for me. But I also like to be informed about whatever everyone else is doing, has done, and is thinking about doing, because it keeps me from thinking I’ve invented the wheel, when everyone around me is already driving cars.

Stop thinking you’ve invented the wheel “trad craft.” We’re all driving in cars, while you’re excited that you can roll something along.

G is for Geomancy

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G is for Geomancy

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Geomancy is the word which I use to refer to a method of divination. It was a method that seems to have originated from Arabic lands, where it goes by the name khat al raml and many others. From this name it was translated into Greek as Geomancy meaning “earth divination” It reached it’s heyday in Europe during the middle ages and the renaissance, and like many other occult arts, dwindled with the flowering of the Age of Reason. During it’s hey day, it was widely practiced and a number of authors wrote treatises about it, even more so then most other methods of divination. It was mainly very easy to use, unlike astrology which required complex calculations and instruments to view the sky, or other methods of sortilege, like card reading, which means you needed to have cards on hand (which not everyone did). At it’s simplest all you needed was some kind of blank field that you could use to make dots which could be used to count and create the figures that build a geomantic reading.

There are sixteen figures used in geomancy. During the middle ages and Renaissance in Europe, these figures were identified with astrological forces, with each classical planet being given two figures, and two more figures attributed to the North and South nodes of the Moon. Each of the figures are composed for 4 lines, which will have either one or two marks. One mark is an indication of active energy in that line and the presence of that force. Two marks are the indication of passive energy of that line, and the absence of inactivity of that force. From top to bottom the lines are named Head, neck, body, feet. They are also identified with the four classical elements from top to bottom of Fire, air, water, earth. These lines and their elemental values, combined with the planetary symbolism, help to give depth to a reading, but also in understanding the symbolism of each sign and it’s interaction with the world and with other signs.

The two methods of using the figures were in generating charts. The oldest and most traditional method is known as a shield chart, which requires one to generate 4 figures, however you wish to do that. These four figures are identified as “mothers” and from them the rest of the figures of the chart are created, about 11 or 12 figures, depending upon the inclusion or exclusion of a final figure. From the mothers one generates 4 daughters and from the mothers and daughters are generated the Nieces, which are then used to generate two witnesses, which are combined to form the Judge. The Judge is considered the answer to the question, sometimes with an additional figure formed by combining the judge and first mother to form the Reconciler, which makes a total of 16 figures used in the chart. Additional methods of shield chart interpretation help to give more precise and particular answers through the relationship of the judge to other elements in the chart.

From the shield chart, a second chart can be generated, known as the house chart. This chart is based upon the 12 house system of astrology, where each sign is placed into a house. The most basic ordering is taking the 1st mother which is given to the first house, 2nd mother to the second house, 3rd mother to the third house etc… There are other methods of assigning figures, depending upon whose treatise you read, or your own insight from gaining proficiency and skill with it. From the house chart it is also possible to answer questions, which can further influence the indications given in the shield chart and also given more depth and precision to a reading.

I came into geomancy a few years ago when I discovered a newly published book by John Michael Greer. It talked about Earth magic and divination, and as I was very much feeling the earth magic vibe, I was very intrigued by the book title. That introduced me to this method and I quickly took to practicing it and using it as often as I could, in order to become proficient with casting charts and understanding the signs. I also was very taken to how simple the signs were, which can be easily used in making talismans for magic, calling upon the forces symbolized by the geomantic signs.

There does seem to be a rebirth for geomancy occurring right now. While this practice did disappear in the West (although it did survive in some interesting ways and get small revivals during other blossoming of interest in the occult) there are a good number of sources available. Quite a few books have been written, as well as academic research into it as a item of historical interest. It also seems that in Arabic countries, the practice of geomancy has never fulled disappeared. It also bears some resemblance to I Ching, but also methods if Ifa divination. Whether they are related, or only bear passing resemblance is not fully decided or clear yet to researchers. There are some geomancy groups in existence right now, which can be found in Yahoo and also on facebook, where people can share techniques, and get assistance with their interpretations of charts they have cast. Another great resource and modern intrepid explorer is Polyphanes over at Digital Ambler. His work with geomancy is quite fantastic and he does contemplate it in order to advance this once forgotten divinatory art.

Runes, Time, Planets, Stars pt 2

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In exploring the connection between runes and the planets, it seems that it was included as an after thought. Most of his writing about this area again focuses on cycles, mainly cycles of the Sun and Moon, also know the Great Cycle, when the two great lights re-align and repeat their patterns every 19 years. His inclusion of the outer planets, all the way out to “planet x” and he talks about another equally puzzling numerical series that somehow he relates to the runes, and days of the calendar. I think he actually spends al of 10 pages talking about the planets, before he turns back to this endless discussion of numerical sequences, and his odd alignments with runes. His treatment of the planets are of the most interest here though.

As I imagine, most of my readers are aware, the 7 classical planets are preserved in most cultures days of the week. Monday is the day of the Moon, Tuesday is the day of Mars, Wednesday is the day of Mercury, etc… In Germanic languages, many of the days are named after Germanic gods who were paralled with Greco-roman gods. Tuesday means the day of Tyr or Tiw, Wednesday is the day of Wodan/Odhinn, Thursday is the day of Thor, and Friday is the day of Freya/Frigga, with this pattern continuing with Sunday and Monday, as the words for the Sun and Moon are taken from Germanic languages, not latin. Sunna and Mani are the gods of the Sun and Moon, Sunna being the Goddess of the Sun (in contrast to the Greco-roman Helios and Apollo, who were male) and Mani, who is a God of the Moon (in contrast to Selene, Artemis and other Goddesses from southern Europe). Their name survive in Sunday (the day of Sunna) and Monday (the day of Mani. Saturday is a direct adapation of the Day of Saturn, as it seems there was no equivalent to in the Germanic gods for such a being. This is where things get odd, as the book states that Sunday is named for the Goddess Sol, whose sister is Mani, and Saturday is for Saeter, a by name of Loki. Yet, there is no evidence of this. One of the alternate names for Saturday that appears in Germanic languages is Laugardag, which means “washing day” as this was the day that people would bath, and clean. He presents this name as also a by name of Loki. This naming is different then most southern European cultures who either named it for Saturn, or adapted from the jewish practice of calling it Shabbat (which is where names like Samedi, Sabado, and the current german name Samstag, although other Germanic countries preserve the Greco-roman name in Zaterdag, which is Dutch).

The outright invention of making an equivalent like that, and presenting it in a factual manner just really bothers me. Through all of this, there is no connection made between the runes and the planets at all, which I find to be the most curious thing, as in traditional astrology, it was the planets that were of major interest and influence, and to ignore a relationship between the planets and the runes, seem to neglect a significant aspect of what a Runic astrology would be about.
The most difficult thing again is in the creation of a runic horoscope, where the runes are aligned again with the houses, signs, and directions. Nigel Pennick’s alignment of the runes onto the 12 house dividsion seems to again create problems, as the attributions and values just don’t seem to line up correctly between the runes, the seasons, and houses. His alignment breaks from the traditional lay out of the astrological chart, placing the vernal equinox at the midheaven, and moving Aries to that location as well, so that Berkana can align with Aries, and the solstices now fall on the ascendant and descendant with Dagaz and Jera. It really seems to defy the logic of the Elder Futhark and it’s meanings, and the layout of the house chart, where aries is located in the east, with the ascendant, and the first hour, which places it with the equinox, at least in the tropical zodiac. His alignment again, is also off centered, with 3 runes occuping the space over each sign, with only one sign in full, with the two others only taking up half of the degrees of the beginning and ending of other signs. Why he does just assign two runes to each zodiac, I am not really entirely sure, as the combination of such, while maybe imperfect, would not create this inelegant attribution where things don’t line up. In most Astrology as I know it, that seems to be determining factor, is the creation of an elegant system that describes spiritual verities and helps to communicate them to earth, through stars, planets, and equal numerical division. It seems that the Runic Astrology proposed so far, is anything but those qualities.

Runes, TImes, Planets, Stars

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Recently I have acquired two older books dealing with Runes, seeming classics (in a sense) written by Nigel Pennick, Practical Magic of the Northern Tradition and Runic Astrology. The main focus of Runic Astrology, and one of the major chapters of Practical Magic, is Time, Planets, and Stars and how they related to the Runes, particularly the Elder Futhark. By time, I mean, hours of the day, parts of day and night (morning, evening etc…) months, seasons, lunar movement, and the solar year. By planets, I mean the seven classic planets (Saturn, Jupiter, Mars, Sun, Venus, Mercury, and the Moon) and the stars are the Zodiac, but also other stars and constellations.

To be perfectly honest, my hope and expectations for the book Runic Astrology, were much higher then it delivered. The reason why I acquired this book, was mainly because of a great interest I have had in Astrology, and it’s processes, purposes and methods. This led me to read “The Three Books of Occult Philosophy” by Cornelius Agrippa, one of the foundational books of Western Occultism. It has also made me a major fan of the website “Renaissance Astrology” and Christopher Warnock, who is focused on the methods of Astrology before 1700, when Astrology essentially ruled the World (so to speak) and was a valued science by every scholar and philosopher of the time. The depth of knowledge that I have gained just from reading and studying his website, and following his blog has been wonderful, and some of the information that I have applied in understanding my own natal chart has shown great veracity, far more then any contemporary astrology practices have. With this foundation, I dove into Runic Astrology, hoping to find a way to connect the runes to astrology, the planets, the zodiac and tools and methods of astrological prediction and magic. I have to say, I was rather disappointed.

One of the main things that were talked about at length was the connection of Runes to parts and hours of the day, directions and seasons, solstices and equinoxes. This was all connected to a circular image, where those connections were laid down, with the elder futhark drawing the connection between them. It seemed the key to the diagram was the location of the rune dagaz, giving it to noon (or midday), which also connected it to the south, and the summer solstice. While it does seem correct in that placement (dagaz meaning day, and is thus a rune of light) that puts, in opposition to it, jera, the rune of harvest, the summer, the year, and of plenty, located at midnight, north, winter solstice, which seems a very odd location to put a rune that is also filled with powerful benevolent imagery.

Other things were also equally inexplicable, for example, in giving runic hours (24 runes = 24 hours makes sense, right) governed by an equal division, based on the half hour of the clock. So, feoh is in operation from 1:30 to 2:30 pm. This seems odd to me, as it stands distinctly from the planetary hours, which are divided by time of daylight, and are not an even 60 minutes long, but have varying lengths depending upon the duration of day and night during the year. Why an equal division is necessary seems curious to me, and then placing it on the half hour, it seems to just make things unnecessary difficult.

One of the other functions of time that he looked at, is what was called the lunar seles. The seles would otherwise be known as the mansions of the moon. In contrast to Western practice, the book only gives 28 mansions (which is following Vedic astrology), while Agrippa (from Arabic methods) gives 29 mansions of the moon. In giving those 28 mansions, he assigns them runes from the elder futhark and the anglo-saxon runes, leaving out one rune, because there are normally 29 of them. But when the western tradition uses 29 mansions, one could use all of those runes, in placement with all of the mansions. The question is then to how to place the runes in the lunar mansions. While Pennick ignores the existing traditions of the lunar mansions, his allocation gives the first rune (feoh) to the first mansion (ie the first day following the dark moon) and going forward until the last rune (ear) given to the dark moon. While the last rune may fit well, the allocation of other runes doesn’t seem quite so correct, as the full moon would correspond with peorth, which does not seem quite so perfect an alignment. At least, if the traditions of the lunar mansions were applied, the full moon would fall in different runes all the time, as would the dark moon, and give different aspects and purposes to different times, instead of always assigning the same values to the phases of the moon.

The final oddity of his time values is the runic half month. Because there are 24 runes, the regular year gets divided into approximately 2 periods of 15 days each, where one rune governs that time period. They aren’t necessarily aligned with anything, not the zodiac, not the months, or anything, but just this cycle, following along with dagaz governing the 15 day period where the summer solstice occurs and jera happening when the winter solstice occurs. It doesn’t really seem to fit into any type of time keeping, but is something established all on its own, which also doesn’t have any historical basis, or alignment with symbolism of anything else.

Part 2 will focus on Planets.