Sunday, July 11, 2010

Clarifications on What If

Ok, I feel the need to `clarify a few points about the last post.

The first clarification is: It was supposed to be kind of a light musing on things, and perhaps some side experimentation. It was not a very serious doctrine that I am now espousing as the new and better way. I think a few people may have taken it that way.

Second clarification: It was definitely not meant as an accusation that Hermetic magic is wrong, doesn't work, or is fundamentally flawed. It was simply a post pondering if the system would have looked the same if we had always known about the Heliocentric universe. I don't think it would have looked the same, others suppose that it might. The point is that they did'nt know and it is set up that way and it has worked for many. Despite the nagging feeling with the symbol set, it worked for me. It still works for me when working with other people and we all need to get on the same page.

Thinking of things in different ways does not necessitate abandoning old ways. In Kabbala for instance different Rabbi's and different texts have attributed the planets in different order. Even in the same text this sometimes happens (Sepher Ratziel). Each arrangement is not an argument against another one, simply a different approach, sometimes yielding a different result.

Another example of an approach you could do using modern methods is to take the planets as they are typically arranged on a Septagram like this:

But instead connect them using an obtuse heptagram like this:

The planets automatically fall into the order of their atomic weights, which might be an interesting order to work them in if you were alchemicaly inclined. It looks like this:

Mars rules iron .. .. .. .. atomic weight 56
Venus rules copper .. .. .. .. atomic weight 63
Moon rules silver .. .. .. .. atomic weight 108
Jupiter rules tin .. .. .. .. atomic weight 118
Sun rules gold .. .. .. .. atomic weight 196
Mercury rules mercury .. .. .. .. atomic weight 200
Saturn rules lead .. .. .. .. atomic weight 207

Third clarification: This one is the MOST IMPORTANT. There tends to be a little confusion about the difference between the physical planets as psycospiritual batteries of power and the planets as symbols of the levels between material manifestation and subtler more ultimate layers of reality. I want to be clear that I was speaking about the latter, not the former.

Now, unlike Frater R.O. in his post here, I do actually use the planets as batteries of power. In this I follow a long tradition established in China, India, and several other places. One can draw upon the energies of the actual planets through the body, as well as certain stars and even groups of stars. One can also travel to these places in the Astral Body (indeed that is why the astral body is called the Astral or Star Body). You can zip off to the physical sun and other stars, and even the center of the galaxy. I can say from experience that  it is worthwhile doing so. You are however simply traveling to a place in the lower astral that relates to the spacial coordinates of the physical location. You are not shifting your awareness to a higher sphere. Doing so from those coordinates can yield very interesting results, but that is perhaps best left for another day.

The type of work that Heremetic magic, Khabbalah, and other similar systems describe is NOT about traveling to the physical place. It is about travel to a higher vibrational sphere from material to subtle reality. I tend to describe this as Vertical rather than Horizontal travel.

The planets in this case are simply convenient symbols for dividing up the experience into manageable levels, which is exactly what R.O. states in the post liked to above. Indians and some Greeks divided the experience up using the elements. Golden Dawn took the Enochian Athyrs and used it in the same way.

My post was geared around setting up a system of experiencing this journey but which deliberately shifts consciousness away from being rooted in the earth. It is important to note that to the Gnostics the entire point was that the Earth was a trap and the planets, far from being helping stepping stones to the stars, were barriers ruled by Archons that essentially kept mankind imprisoned in earth consciousness.

The system that I mused about in the last post, was all about re-rooting in the sun, than re-approaching the lower spheres, the earth itself, and than the higher spheres from that anchor point. In the traditional system the stage of the Sun was thought to be particularly important, the system I put forth recognizes this by having you turn around after you have reached the center and than going to the outer reaches. This is also a good representation of the forumla IAO which uses the vowels associated with Luna, Sol, and Saturn respectively.

The thought of re-anchoring in the galactic center as a symbol of layers of consciousness beyond the ninth sphere was an extrapolation. In my experience, a black hole would be a pretty good symbol for the gnosis of these layers, represented by Causal Layers in my system and by the Veils of Unmanifest Existence.


Lavanah said...

I thought it was clear that you were musing, rather than pontificating. (words chosen deliberately!)

PhoenixAngel said...

Thank You for this clarification. I feel more at ease, instead of feeling torn between using the hermetic order rather than the actual order. The impression I got from your post/geometry was that its more like trying to find the correct screwdriver or socket wrench. An engineer just hasnt made the tool yet.

Christopher said...

I tend to view the planets in the "convenient metaphors" model but believe that the reality behind them is very real on other levels of being.

I feel the same way about the zodiac and the various star systems such as Sirius and The Pleiades. When I think of seeing them as a kind of meatphysical battery to my work, I can only think of the astrologers who used to attempt to justify astrology as some sort of "gravity" effect from planets or stars. And, I also have a pet peeve with the idea that the moon influences because of te water content of our bodies. This all seems like pseudo-science. I am fine with keeping the spiritual/metaphysical and the scientific in their own distinct magisterium in regards to this issue.

I'm not suggesting that you are buying into the whole "gravitational influences" and "moon water" theories but I just had to vent a bit.

Christopher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Christopher said...

Nick Farrell has an excellent article that looks upon the Olympic Planetary Spirits as the actual gods behind the gods of mythology. Very interesting take on these spirits and one I am certainly open to considering.

The article is here:

About Robert said...

I didn't assume from your comments what you seem to be implying other people may or may not have inferred or deduced. Enough weasel words in that? grin

Derek Lorian said...

Wow, I discovered the atomic weight planetary order while studying chemistry and magick in high school. I've never seen it published anywhere. Looks like you beat me to it.

There is evidence that the ancients had heliocentric models originating from Pythagoreanism. A google search for "Pythagoras heliocentric" will produce many essays. Also, the Sun IS in the center of the Tree.

That said, I have recently been working with the physical planetary order and your recent posts have been very much along the same lines. Neptune, in particular, has posed a symbolic problem; and Holst's 'mystic' seems to be holding up.

I stopped using Pluto in astrology years before astronomers decided it wasn't a planet. It always seemed too insignificant. Now the solar system has nice symmetry; 4 small rocky planets and 4 gas giants divided by an asteroid field. I thought of treating the asteroids as a sphere, but they seem less significant than Pluto; the total mass of all of them is less than 4% of the moon.

Love your books and blog, BTW.

蔡燕 said...


Jack Cutterswine said...

Nice work. Just wondering about your atomic number assignment of silver being 108 instead of 47. I don't know if I've ever astrally traveled to Arcturus, but my work seems to be taking me that direction!