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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

I Got 99 Problems and Mercury Ain't One

So, my favorite time a year is when Mercury is retrograde, and by favorite, I mean, I hate watching all the posts about people dealing with Mercury being retrograde.

The influences of the planets are based on movements, proximity, and relationships. So while Mercury may appear to go backwards it doesn't really travel backwards, so nothing really changes in its movement. Position is the main thing that comes up in how the planets and stars relate, there are some key movement based elements, but retrograde motion has never struck me as a particularly important one.

But, whether I believe in the impact of retrograde motion or not doesn't necessarily impact whether you do or not. So maybe it's a problem you need to resolve. Or maybe you just need to create a beneficial Mercurial presence in your life.

Currently, Mercury, Jupiter, and the Sun are all in the sign of Virgo. Virgo has a lot of influence right now with such a stellar cast of characters hanging out in her neighborhood. So we can use this to our advantage.

Mercury is exalted in Virgo, meaning that in Virgo Mercury is in its optimum position, it is able to impart its effects without being hampered by contrary astrological effects. Not only is Mercury exalted in Virgo, but double whammy of awesome, Mercury rules Virgo. So even without the exaltation Virgo would be a positive position for Mercury adding to its ability to impart a harmonized Mercurial force. So with Mercury currently in Virgo we have a pretty good position to work from.

But...we're concerned with Mercury having issues because of the retrograde motion.

The Sun is also in Virgo. The sign the Sun is in reflects the outer appearance of things which occur during that time. So the Sun in Virgo will impart the essential elements of Virgo in a balanced visible fashion. Sun in Virgo indicates exacting attention to detail, a grounded nature, and dutiful execution of specific tasks. When taken into the realm of communication this ties back to clear precise communication.

The Sun in general represents aligning, and balancing things, and ordering them to their true purpose. It is the central force which organizes the planets along their rotations. It positions them and therefore is directive of the ordered exposition of their luminescence. So the Sun acting in relation to Mercury works to correct the manifestation of Mercurial force.

Now, we noted Jupiter is also hanging out there in Virgo. We don't need too much focus on the Jupiterian presence here. Jupiter in Virgo, as we discussed recently, diminishes Jupiter's ability to create prosperity. But, when we discussed the Homeric Hymn of Mercury, Mercury was kind of running around like crazy trying to get himself situated (retrograde), he stole Apollo's (Sun) bulls (an animal associated at times with Jupiter) and so Jupiter interceded, and gave position and power to Mercury and set Apollo on instructing and directing Mercury. So the story here, while it reflects Jupiter's detriment in Virgo, it also reflects the situation we're dealing with. Mercury isn't behaving how we want, but a relationship with Jupiter and Sol fixes Mercury's motion. So the current positioning gives us the tools we need.

In classical and medieval magic a common way of dealing with astrological elements was to apply a talisman made under and reflecting favorable astrological conditions. Today we call this “Scholastic Image Magic” in the renaissance and middle ages it was called telesmatics, Persian Image Magic, Arabic Image Magic, or signs were referred to as Hermetic Images and other similar names. Often this is treated as a form of non-addressative magic, meaning it did not involve rituals or spirits. You simply made the talisman under the right astrological influences and the celestial rays present at the time of construction were sealed within the talisman so that it could be applied in situations where people needed those influences, or so that it could draw in or ward off things based upon the image and the celestial rulership.

We do have several examples which show addressative forms of image magic in renaissance, late medieval, and even in some middle eastern texts. In these addressative forms talismans were made under correct conditions and rituals or prayers were included. Our example today can be done either way depending upon your preferred way of working.

The talisman should be made with dual rings encircling it. In the outer ring should be the names associated with the sign of Virgo since that is where everything is occurring. In the inner ring should be the names and seal of the Sun since we want the influence of the Sun to align the planetary force of Mercury. The name for the Mercurial archangel can appear within the talismanic image since that is the focus of the image. We will not include a Jupiterian name because it's not primarily the force we want to be working with, we just kind of want a nod to the Jupiterian presence and it's ability to add beneficence to the direction of Mercury.

The image in the center should be of Mercury as the Messenger; he should hold a bull by the neck, similar to in a Mithraic tauroctony image. Above should be the Sun, below should be the name of the Mercurial archangel.

Virgo names: Hamaliel (Archangel), Ceres (Greek Divinity), Vav Yod, Heh, Heh, (astrological banner)

Solar Names: Raphael (Archangel), Och (Olympic Spirit), Apollo (Greek Divinity), ELVH (Divine Name)

Mercurial Angel: Michael

The seals for Raphael, Michael, and Och can be found in the Magical Calendar.

If we are making the seal without addressing any spiritual powers we simply construct the seal while these planets are still in the sign of Virgo. Sunrise or Noon being the best times of day.

You can add ritual components by consecrating your space and materials through whatever openings, invocations, and purifications you feel are appropriate. Psalms from the Greater Key of Solomon might make sense. Openings from the Chaldean Oracles. A prayer to your Holy Guardian Angel or to the Architect of Creation. Any of these could be used.

If we want to move closer to addressative magic add the appropriate Orphic Hymns. While writing the names for Virgo use a Hymn to Persephone. While doing the Solar ring a Hymn to Apollo or Helios. While doing the inner image a Hymn to Hermes while drawing him and a Hymn to Zeus while drawing the bull.

You could further consecrate the talisman by using a conjuration of the Archangel Michael or the Olympic Spirit Ophiel and explaining the powers you would like imparted into the talisman.

You have a lot of options.

My intention here was more to give a framework than a set ritual to use. If you try making a talisman let me know how it goes in the comments!

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