Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wearing or Hiding Astrological Talismans?

I had a recent question asking whether you could openly wear astrological talismans or should hide them.

If there is any mention of this issue at all in Picatrix it does tend toward hiding talismans. Picatrix Bk I, ch 5, Greer & Warnock trans, page 42, "An Image to Increase Wealth and Trade" says to guard the talisman and keep it secret so no one sees it.

De Imaginibus has you burying talismans, eg Chapter VII, though this doesn't necessarily mean the talisman has to be hidden.

I do personally wear talismans openly, even the Great Wealth and Fountain of Wealth talismans based on the Bk I, ch 5 recipe that says to keep them hidden. Perhaps part of this is vanity, since I think Renaissance Astrology talismans are beautiful pieces of jewelry. I have certainly not noticed any ill effects. I don't let all and sundry handle my talismans, but actually I have been rather surprised by the almost total lack of curiosity and interest that my talismans evoke.

I mean, here I am, wearing 2 planetary rings and 4 talismans and nobody asks me about them! I had one guy recently ask me about my Regulus talisman, but that was first time anyone asked in 2010! If I mention the talismans I generally get a very brief purely polite response with zero followup. Maybe people are so weirded out that they can't wait to change the subject; I really have no idea.

My sense of astrological talismans is moving further and further away from the charged battery model to the ensouled entity, dwelling place of the spirits model. I get the sense the astrological spirits like their beautiful talismans. I know I feel like I should keep them polished. My compass in all my dealings with the astrological spirits, be it ritual, meditation or talismans, is "am I being respectful?"

Personally, I don't feel that openly wearing astrological talismans is disrespectful, but this is my personal opinion. Valuable, in that I am basically top of the heap in terms of contemporary astrological magicians, but in particular cases, like the Picatrix Bk I chapter 5 wealth talismans, not in line with this important traditional source.

It's important to be clear about this. We don't want everything frozen in 1647 or 1000, but then we don't want to change merely because the modern worldview insists that everything new is better than everything old and everything my ego thought up in 15 minutes is better than what took Plato a lifetime to conceive. I feel like I am still operating within the tradition, but I want to be perfectly clear that this is my personal idiosyncrasy.

This has particular relevance because there are astrologers out there insisting that they are "traditional" but being very, very vague about what traditional sources say and what they do personally. Nothing wrong with doing your own thing, within the tradition, but let's be crystal clear about what is in traditional sources and what is our own personal thing.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Maybe one of the reasons for keeping them hidden in days of yore was to keep the wearer safe from being hauled in to church authorities for 'practicing witchcraft'.