How I make my planetary talismans

A talisman, strictly speaking, a visual seal (sigil) of magical intent that is energetically charged to bring wanted things toward you; it has typically been contrasted with amulets which repel unwanted things. In Western traditions nowadays, this line is a little blurry, so this post refers to both, but only those related to astrological talismans. Any time is possible to do magick. Elemental magick is always available, no matter the circumstances. Astrological magick is also always available, and can be tweaked via planetary banishing and invoking, but it’s a bit more like playing a game of cards, in which you can discard some cards and draw others.

I start my planetary talisman process based on the desired astrological energy. To do this, you need to have familiarity with basic astrology and what makes a planet’s energy strong as well as harmonious with other planets. Once the dominant planetary energy is selected, I pick the time and the base metal. Paper is fine but not as durable energywise as metal. Classically each astrological planet has its own metal; of the seven planets, only four have metals that are realistic to use nowadays: Saturn’s and Mercury’s metals (lead & mercury, respectively) are toxic, and the sun’s metal, gold, is toxic to your bank account! I substitute silver, the moon’s metal, for these three planets, because the moon is “closest” to the earth in the medieval tradition.

Once I have the metal picked, I begin the design; there’s not much imagination on my part in designing talismans. If a planetary talisman, I begin by looking up the magic square for that planet. This will be the center of the overall design, and also tells me the number of elements to incorporate into the talisman, including the numbers of the square itself (but not the grid). I usually go with the sum of a given row or column.

Once I have the number of elements, I incorporate the names of the selected deities and/or archangels associated with the planet & its sephira. In the Hermetic tradition, these can be found by looking them up ina correspondence resource such as 777, 776_1/2, or Thelemapedia (in the case of a Mars talisman, for example, I use row 27, and perhaps also row 5 for the sephira it rules, Geburah); these are all based on the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn (which itself is largely based on Agrippa: see below); I have yet to explore other similar orders’ materials such as Aurum Solis but this is forthcoming, I’m sure. I then start counting the letters in the deity names and try to use some combination of them that adds up the the planetary square total (in the case of the Mars talisman, 65). Also, I do one final check for the planetary seal from Agrippa’s Three Books of Occult Philosophy, Book 1, Chapter 33. My standard approach is to have the names parallel to each of the four sides of the square (placed according to the Four Worlds associations in the Kabbalah and/or stacked as necessary according to the hierarchy in which they fit; the planetary seal I break into four parts which go at the corners, in a rounded formation of long enough).

Once the design is complete, it comes to a method of charging the talisman. Here you’re asking the deity or angel to do you a solid and please charge your talisman. Angels work in the capacity of their deity, so appeal to that connection, and deities like it when you approach via the things they are connected to (such as the incenses or plants in a correspondence book like 777–the more the better, but there is diminishing returns, so don’t dip into your savings! If money is an issue, cultivate sincerity and it will make up for it). Use a picture of the appropriate animal, a small clipping of the appropriate plant, light the appropriate incense, etc. Next, perform the planetary invoking ritual (I use the Greater Invoking Ritual of the Hexagram) to call forth the energy associated with your astrological election. Then I usually will either do an invocation for the deity to temporarily inhabit my body (choose your deity wisely!) and provide a charge to the object, or a call to the angel by appealing to its deity. I will usually modify Liber Israfel for the former; for the latter, it depends on the system. Enochian has specific methods to call upon its angels; similarly, the Shem-Hamphorasch has its own 72 angels and various authors have books on contacting them. Once those methods are done you make your request to the angel(s) that you have called to charge the talisman for you.

One alternative to the entity method is energy work, such as Chi or Reiki (though the latter still accesses divine entities). Reiki is probably better since it explicitly calls on the energy of the heavens (which, you know, where the stars and planets are), but Chi could probably also be used, if you set a strong intention to only use the more terrestrial energy that fully reflects the celestial.

Here we come to a point not to be overlooked: timing is essential. Unlike other astrologers, my view of an event is to look at the definitive “birthing” portion. Just as astrologers typically use a birth time and not a conception time, events or even ideas have to be birthed and not just stirred or conceived. A seed doesn’t count as a new plant just because it’s been planted, or watered, or the like. The seed emerge from its shell and touch the air and light as well as put down its first root. I dwell on this point because, well, you have to time your actions to culminate as closely to the time you’ve elected.

That’s it: you now have a charged talisman!

Making a Death Talisman…for Oneself!

WHAT?! Who…what…I…WHY?!

Well, I don’t intend to die; as the late Robert Anton Wilson phrased it, I intend to “live forever, or die trying.

Still, it is of interest is covering one’s bets, as it were, with the latter half of that quote. This got me thinking that, if done well, the dying process could be helped by creating a talisman to assist oneself in the dying process.

The logic behind this one is simple. Find the Arabic lot, or part, of death in your chart, then find an upcoming transit when this part is well-aspected; I managed to find two: the first is in 2024 (with Jupiter conjunct the lot of death by 5 degrees, the sun conjunct by 2 degrees, and Venus conjunct by a handful of minutes). The second of these is in 2026, with a simple Uranus transit over the lot, but many harmonious aspects to it (I’ve found that Uranus does seem to have some association with Kether, the topmost sephirah in the Kabbalah, but I’m not yet confident enough with this association to be certain, so…we’ll see).

The question with this kind of electional astrology is where to put the ascendant. I decided to put it opposite to the lot of death (i.e., the lot of death on the descendant); in so doing, I am using the talisman to relate to my own death. No, I’m not going full comics Thanos, but it’s important to see death as something to try to get on good terms with. Tough to do that if you put the lot of death on the ascendant (which would be saying, “This talisman is going to have the personality associated with my death,”: dangerous to have death in your face like that!). Both talisman elections either have the chart ruler on or in harmonious aspect to the descendant.

The interesting thing about these talismans is that I am not sure whether these will work; only those who survive me can report back on the results! I can only suspect for now, and rely on the I Ching’s preference for the earlier of the two talismans (and so I may not make the second). If it works well and I reincarnate from a rainbow body, I’ll be sure to leave a good review (and perhaps even log in to restart the blog)!

Talismanic elections, 2nd half of 2020 through end of 2021: Talisman 3, True Node exaltation

There weren’t extra-special elections that I found for a talisman in 2021 (this may change as I study the ephemeris more deeply), so I have only selected just one for the entire year: the true node exaltation in September 2021. This simple election takes advantage of a grand air trine including the true node, the ascendant, and the moon in early Gemini (don’t worry, this isn’t anywhere near an eclipse!), the sun, Part of Fortune, and Mars in Libra, and Saturn in its domicile in Aquarius and not within a 5-degree square of Uranus at this particular time of the year. The sun and Mars in their fall and detriment, respectively, should feel somewhat less frustrated via their enclosure of the Part of Fortune.

Together, the ascendant and moon should bring a subtle sense of the winds of the moment–a perfect fit for airy Gemini! Happily, Jupiter trines Mercury, and lands in the 9th house where the MC resides, and the MC also moderates the erratic energy of Uranus via its sextile. The only thing missing, it seems, is that the Ascendant and the MC are not conjunct any fixed star. Oh, well: you can’t win them all!

I would expect such a talisman, with its ascendant in my 11th house, to bring a better social sense, which is something that I could honestly use! The other placements are extraordinarily heavy in air, which could be a great complement to all the fire in my natal chart–it nearly completes a grand sextile with m in synastry.

For this talisman, I recommend evoking (or, if you wish, invoking) the angel Sagarash is the angel of the first decan of Gemini according to Rose Manning, and Yezelel is Shemhamphorasch angel associated with the first half-decan of Gemini according to Damon Brand. Each has their own technique that can easily be modified to charge a talisman.

Talismanic elections, 2nd half of 2020 through end of 2021: Talisman 2, Albireo

Chriiiistmas, Chriiiistmas, tiiiime of year! Time for Talismans, and cheer!

Yes, the next talisman is for Christmas Eve of 2020. Saturn and Jupiter will still be in their conjunction in Aquarius, and the first fixed star they interact with in this sign is Albireo! My attention was brought to this particular fixed star by Kelly Surtees in either the Astrology Podcast or her presentation at the Astrology University. If I have the reference to her reference wrong, be a good referee and feel free to refer me to the correct reference to her reference.

Regardless, Albireo looks like a fairly good fixed star to have Saturn and Jupiter work with (when you see Obama, George Clooney, Picasso, Elizabeth Taylor, Jim Carrey, and Jeff Bridges spanning both of these planets, you think, “There’s probably some sweet major modification energy here!). This makes it an uneasy neighbor to Altair, its next-door neighbor: because of this, the caution that I advise on this talisman is to not only use this election (i.e., not a later one), but also to make sure to include the symbolism of the swan’s beak in your talisman’s design.

This talismanic election, as you can see, has the part of fortune conjunct my own north node. Always check the astrology against your own chart–and against the eclipses!–to ensure you’re creating something that not only works to lock in a desirable “constellation” (heh, heh) of energy, but also one that works well with your own chart.

I have put Saturn in the 10th house; the chart ruler, Venus, is in Sagittarius, which looks to Jupiter; Jupiter, the greater benefic, is no longer in its fall in Capricorn, but still is modified in its expression by the greater malefic of Saturn. In fact, Saturn is the final dispositor of everything, with the exception of (the lesser malefic of) Mars which is still strong its domicile, but, as mentioned in my previous post, you can banish any planet, including Mars, via the Greater Banishing Ritual of the Hexagram. I haven’t decided yet whether to do so for this ritual, because it’s in my 9th house, where my natal Mars resides, but it’s far closer to my natal MC. Note, too, the squaring energy of Uranus and the moon! Nonetheless, the former is in a 5+ degree orb, and the moon is separating, and both are trine the sun, which is the sect light, and Mercury. Nonetheless, you may consider doing a general banishing via the Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Hexagram, then invoking Saturn and Jupiter for the purposes of this talisman (leaving those two planets’ energies as predominant).

For your humble “talismaker,” this conjunction lands in my 7th house. It’s an angular house, so although not quite as strong as the 1st or 10th, it’s by no means the weakest! I’m hoping to bring out the best in my interactions with others and vice versa with the energy of this fixed star.

As with any talisman, you can add the Agrippa symbols for Saturn and Jupiter:

You can also add angel names via the methods suggested by Agrippa or similarly derived versions by Aaron Leitch in his great book, The Angelical Language, Vol. I (Vol II is also excellent), or by the more recent The Angels of Fortune, by Rose Manning, who has worked through the appropriate angels by both research and experimentation (always important to include this as part of your magickal practice!). You can also use the associated deity names for the correspondences for Saturn, Jupiter, and Aquarius. For this in particular for Western astrologer/Western magicians, I recommend referencing Eshelman’s 776_1/2 and not 777, which did not have the references for Aquarius and Aries fully worked out. Though 776_1/2 still seems to have some problems with other panthea (I really believe Ganesh remains mis-assigned, for example), it’s a vast improvement and expansion on the already groundbreaking work done by Crowley–and likely his Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn colleagues–in 777.

Good luck!

Talismanic elections, 2nd half of 2020 through end of 2021: Talisman 1: Alphecca

By unanimous demand by the 8 people who voted on Twitter, I am presenting my talismanic elections for the 2nd half of 2020 through 2021.

You might not be at all surprised that 2020 was a little challenging, and even the Astrology Podcast has had difficulty this year with the challenging Saturnian placements. First I’ll present each of my elections, followed by my approach:

1. Alphecca Talisman: November 19, 2020 (San Antonio, TX: shown in synastry with my natal chart)

This is a talisman designed to bring out the healing speech factor of Alphecca. Who wouldn’t want to be subtly healing our fellow human beings simply be speaking as we normally would? Put another way, who wouldn’t want our normal speech to also happen to be healing?

Yes, I’ve opened myself to some criticism: “This has both malefics in domicile! Are you mad?” Well, first thing’s first: if you’re making talismans, you’re a magician. If you’re a magician, you’d better know how to banish. If you know how to banish, you’d better banish appropriately! So the first recommendation is to banish Saturn (via the Greater Banishing Ritual of the Hexagram or other means) before making the talisman, because as you can see, he’s still doing his stuff in the 8th house. This leaves the moon without a ruler, but she’s getting some out-of-sign sextile support from the Sun & Chiron.

Second, even awesome talismans are still going to hit your natal chart, so planning around this means doing a synastry with your own natal chart. So what to do about the Mars placement? Well, as you can see, this Mars placement isn’t so bad for me: it’s my natal Mars! Also, I’ve put the Part of Fortune conjunct Mars, which at 19deg Aries is trine my natal, to take the edge off and make it productive. This makes the rulership of the Sun & Mercury suddenly strong but also more positive. 11th house could indicate fights, or it could indicate hard work in social organizations–what better use of the healing factor than in a social context? Mercury also gets support by trining the MC, and Uranus, though in the 12th house, is sextiling it.

How to design such a thing? Because this is a talisman for a fixed star, the only thing we’re invoking is the conjunction (even if we want the “birth” of the talisman to still be a good chart). Use Agrippa’s sigil for Mercury:

as well as the Mercury square, then add the Alphecca images (cf. Christopher Warnock’s Fixed Star, Sign and Constellation Magic) as well as any stones to your base, in a design of your own making. I usually try to make the square (including the numbers) and then draw the Agrippa seal in a circular manner around the whole thing.

How do you charge it? My recommendation is to fuse a modified version of Liber Israfel to request some divine energy (in this case, call upon Hermes or Mercury), or use the techniques provided by Warnock (I prefer the YHVH to Arzel to Raziel method from Damon Brand’s book on the Shemhamphorasch angels–but who knows, I may change my mind). Regardless, be sure to add into your request to the deity or deities inside you that the talisman be energetically charged.

Good luck!