alchemy

A journey from modern Iraq back into ancient wisdom and modern science

This article was originally posted in 2009.  Astrologer Dave Mockaitis has a fascinating essay connecting the Yezidi, a Kurdish people on the border of Syria and Iraq, back to the Picatrix, a collection of Arabic texts that was widely used by mages during the Renaissance period.  He then draws connections back to the Sabians of Harran, adding a layer of interest to my post on the Sabian Symbols,

He then goes back to Hermes Trismegistus, a fascinating quasi-mythological figure who appears to combine the Greek Hermes with the Egyptian Thoth, leading many (including myself) to postulate that perhaps those two were actually the same being – perhaps an Atlantean survivor who served as the messenger of ancient wisdom (Hermes and Thoth are both gods of knowledge and magic).  The saying “as above, so below” is attributed to Hermes Trismegistus – the Thrice Great.

From Dave’s article:

The dictum “as above, so below” describes the connection between the core level of reality experienced by humans and the movements of the heavenly bodies. In contemporary astrology, it is generally thought that planetary phenomena cause or are reflected in events on Earth. However, the magical tradition takes this concept one step further by harnessing or cocreating with the planetary phenomena. Many hermeticists feel that these acts even comprise a spiritual practice because by working with the planets, they come closer to “the one” (Warnock “Hermetic Gnosis).

This ancient magical practice of working with the energy of the planets in an alchemical process rather than in a relationship where a dependency on one’s fate is created.  Dave concludes,

Approaching the planets as forces which can be worked with and embodied, the mage is in a position of active engagement with the solar […]

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By |2020-11-03T13:41:44-05:00May 11th, 2019|Astrology|2 Comments

Musings on death and planetary alchemy

planetary alchemyA friend of mine died on Friday.  I had known him casually for many years and worked closely with him for about five.  His death at the age of 65 came less than a month after a diagnosis of a return of melanoma shocks and saddens all in our community in which he was well-loved by so many people.

Before John’s first diagnosis he had been in the throes of the square from transiting Uranus to Uranus in his natal chart.  He confided in me that he longed to change his life and to let go of some of the materialistic trappings that he felt kept him bound to the lifestyle he had created.  This is a fairly common experience during Uranus cycles since Uranus is the planet which  demands that we live a life that is completely authentic and free of meaningless attachments.  Shortly thereafter he was diagnosed with melanoma and had to have an eye removed.  I believe this is when transiting Pluto began working through his chart, followed shortly by Saturn.

The real estate market tanked during this period and John and I no longer worked together although we talked occasionally, so I don’t know what kind of changes he was able to make in his life, but I do wonder how big a role the inexorable pressure of financial personal responsibilities played in the re-emergence of his illness which ravaged him so quickly when it returned.  At the time of his death and during the weeks leading up to it transiting Uranus was exactly square to his Sun, providing him with the liberation he craved.

Understanding the planetary nature of behavior doesn’t always free of from the pressures of our instinctive reactions.  With […]

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By |2019-05-11T07:25:21-04:00June 6th, 2011|Death|5 Comments

The astrology of Carl Jung and his Red Book

A secret book written by Carl Jung nearly one hundred years ago will be released next month according to the New York Times.  Known as the “Red Book,” it was jealously guarded by Jung’s descendants until it was recently found in a bank vault and negotiations with the Jung family ultimately permitted its publication.

The work of Carl Jung transformed the field of modern psychology by incorporating the concept of archetypes and synchronicity into the mystery of the workings of the psyche.  The Jungian process involves delving into our dreams and the symbols that weave a web linking the conscious and the subconscious.  In doing so, we are able to venture on a path of self-discovery and facilitate the process of what Jung called “individuation” in which lost parts of ourselves are recaptured.

Jung’s awareness of the synchronicities in life incorporated the use of dreams, ancient symbols and archetypes, alchemical symbolism, and astrology.  He wrote:

“The collective unconscious appears to consist of mythological motifs or primordial images, for which reason the myths of all nations are its real exponents. In fact the whole of mythology could be taken as a sort of projection of the collective unconscious. We can see this most clearly if we look at the heavenly constellations, whose originally chaotic forms are organized through the projection of images. This explains the influence of the stars as asserted by astrologers. These influences are nothing but unconscious instrospective perceptions of the collective unconscious.”

from Jung’s lecture “The Archetypes and the Collective Unconscious,” Collected Works.

In 1913 Jung “found his psyche starting to teeter and slide, until finally he was dumped into what would become a life-altering crisis.”  He began experiencing visions and hearing voices, and in what he later called […]

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By |2020-11-03T14:02:26-05:00September 21st, 2009|Consciousness, Favorite posts, Longreads|Comments Off on The astrology of Carl Jung and his Red Book

Conspiracy Corner: Alchemy and demons in crop circles

Molly Hall at About Astrology posted a link to Linda Moulton Howe’s excellent crop circle site where she compares the latest crop circle to a sigil used by the ancient alchemists. Linda writes:

Sigils are codes created for a specific magical purpose. The pattern is the code derived from a number and/or letter grid known only to those who produce sigils from the known grid. A sigil is usually made up of a complex combination of several specific symbols or geometric figures each with a specific meaning or intent. The term sigil derives from the Latin sigillum meaning “seal,” though it may also be related to the Hebrew segulah meaning “word, action or item of spiritual effect.”

There is sigil magic in which symbols and signs are used as tools of magicians and alchemists. In medieval ceremonial magic, sigils represented various angels and demons that the magician can summon. The magical training books called the Grimoires often listed pages of angel and demon sigils. A particularly well-known list is in the Lesser Key of Solomon, in which the sigils of the 72 princes of the hierarchy of hell are given for the magician’s use, including the demon Aim. Such sigils were

considered to be the equivalent of the true name of the spirit, and thus granted the magician a measure of control over the entities being called.

For example:

From the Lesser Key of Solomon is this Sigil which is evidently “for the demon, Aim (aka Aym or Haborym), ho is a Great Duke of Hell ruling over twenty-six legions f demons and using fire to destroy. Aim is depicted as humanoid ith three heads: one a serpent; the second a man with two stars on the forehead; and the third a […]

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By |2019-05-11T07:25:38-04:00June 15th, 2009|Conspiracy|Comments Off on Conspiracy Corner: Alchemy and demons in crop circles

Quotes on Science and Psychological Astrology


These quotes are from a very interesting, but fairly technical, article by Douglas Boyd (no longer active) entitled “Inner-active Psychological Astrology” (courtesy of the Starcats site).

“Only after I had familiarized myself with alchemy did I realize that the unconscious is a process, and that the psyche is transformed or developed by the relationship of the ego to the contents of the unconscious.”
C. G. Jung; Memories, Dreams, Reflections: P. 209.

“Mathematics has been and will continue to be the qualitative language of science, but astrology will become the qualitative language of the human condition.” — William Tiller – Professor of Physics, Stanford University

“Sooner or later nuclear physics and the psychology of the unconscious will draw closer together as both of them, independently of one another and from opposite directions, push forward into transcendental territory, the one with the concept of the atom, the other with that of the archetype.”
— C G Jung; Aion (1951). CW 9: Part II: P. 412

“That we can now think of no mechanism for astrology is relevant but unconvincing. No mechanism was known , for example for continental drift when it was proposed by Wegener. Nevertheless, we see that Wegener was right and those who objected on the grounds of unavailable mechanism were wrong.”
— Carl Sagan

“In Jungian psychology there is a clear appreciation that great transformative wisdom resides in the inner world of our dreams, fantasies, and feelings. However, synchronicity shows, that occasionally, this wisdom, this transforming meaning, expresses itself in the inner and outer worlds simultaneously. Appreciating this re-enchants and divinizes the world. From an astrological perspective, we might say that wisdom continuously speaks to us through planetary motions.”
— Victor Mansfield; Physics and Astronomy Department, Colgate University

What is most […]

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By |2019-11-10T19:27:49-05:00June 15th, 2006|Astrology|Comments Off on Quotes on Science and Psychological Astrology
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