Friday, March 23, 2012

Combining Astrology Symbols (sort of a Tarot Deck Review)

How the energies of Mercury may manifest in the sign of Leo.
One of the big things that the Picatrix talks about is images of the various zodiac signs and planets, and combining these images to create more complicated symbols. This idea is not new. In fact, you can figure it out from Agrippa. In addition, the Vault of the Adepts can be viewed as a complex astrological image.

(The comment that I just said about the Vault of the Adepts is approved by my Secret Chiefs and not yours, so don't you dare talk about it. Of course, given the fact that the Picatrix is considered Black Magic, one can only presume that the same applies to the works of Agrippa, who may have been using the Picatrix as a source. I wonder if the Vault of the Adepts is Black Magic also.)

Now, astrologers use the idea of blending astrological energies all the time; it is how they read charts. And magicians working with astrological energies use the concept all the time to do magic.

One of the tools I use for helping me think about such things is the Symbolon deck by Peter Orban, Ingrid Zinnel, and Thea Weller. It is a deck of 78 cards (but not a Tarot deck), consisting of 12 cards representing the zodiac signs and their planetary rulers, and 66 cards combining the basic imagery of the 12 basic images into more complicated images.

For instance, let's say that I am trying to understand how the energies of Mercury manifest in the zodiac sign of Leo---my natal Mercury is located in Leo, by the way.

Mercury, and its ruled sign of Gemini, is represented in the Symbolon deck by The Mediator, a winged messenger carrying a scroll.

The Sun, and its sign of Leo, is represented by The Ego, a king enthroned on a lion-headed throne (a symbol that most of Golden Dawn members will associate more with Aries).

The combined energies of Leo and Mercury can be seen in The Actor, which depicts a stage with the Mediator in the background while the Ego walks across the stage, in front of an audience, holding the unfurled scroll.

Hmmm, I see no way that could actually apply to me, a humble blogger---I must have decided to use the wrong card.

(Review Time)

I have owned my Symbolon deck for several years (more than a decade). I am not sure that it is even still in production---but with eBay does it really matter? I do not use it for readings, well, not card readings. The way I use it is exactly what I was talking about in the first part of this blog post; I use it to suggest to me ways that astrological energies might be manifesting when combined in various modes. It is basically, for me, a way to attempt to grok the parts of an astrology chart that I am struggling with.

(And no, I do not struggle with my Mercury in Leo; it is my Moon in Scorpio that causes all the problems.)

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