Monday, June 6, 2016

Simple Electional Timing

Have you ever cast a spell that seemed to go just fine, but produced few or no results? The problem might have been the prevailing astrological conditions at the time you cast it. Electional astrology is an entire sub-field of astrology dedicated to finding the best and most opportune times to do just about everything, including casting spells.

The trouble there is that most magicians are not skilled astrologers and don't necessarily want to put in the necessary time to learn all the intricacies of the discipline. We just want to cast spells and have them work. So today I'm going to tell you about a simple method that can help you do some effective electional work without having to learn too many involved astrological concepts.

In order to use this method you only have to pay attention to the sign of and aspects formed by a single planet - the Moon. I know, it's not actually a planet according to the modern definition of the word. But it is the closest heavenly body to Earth, and it moves through the entire zodiac every 28 days or so. As it does, it makes aspects with all the other planets.

To start off, here's some basic terminology. Aspects are specific angles formed between planets in the sky. For the purposes of this method, I am only talking about the Moon and any of the other planets. A Conjunction is when two planets are in the same location, an angle of 0 degrees. A Sextile is an angle of 60 degrees, a Square is an angle of 90 degrees, and a Trine is an angle of 120 degrees. Finally, an Opposition is an angle of 180 degrees.

Some modern astrologers have proposed other kinds of aspects, but it's only those five that we need to worry about for the purposes of this method. As the Moon moves through all twelve signs of the zodiac, it enters a sign, and then makes each aspect in that sign as it passes through. Looking at this process gives us the two pieces of information that we need to make a simple electional determination for a magical operation.


The first of these is called Void of Course. The Moon is void of course between the time that it makes the last aspect in a sign and the time that it enters the next sign. This interval varies depending upon the positions of the other planets. It can last for be as short a time as a few minutes or for a day or more.

This is important because according to electional astrology, you should never perform a magical operation when the Moon is void of course. The astrological meaning of this condition is that any significant change in your situation is unlikely to occur. So since magical operations are intended to cause change in conformity with will, any spell you cast on a void of course Moon is basically pushing against the momentum of the astrological landscape.

A good magician can overcome this and I'm sure that over the years I've done spells on void of course Moons that have worked. But they work a whole lot better when they don't have to push back against the resistance that this condition creates. Since the Moon moves through the zodiac so quickly, it usually is not that difficult to find a time when the Moon is not void of course. Then you don't have to deal with it at all.

Fortunately, you don't have to go through an ephemeris to work out when the Moon will be void of course. The Lunarium website tracks it for you. Just save your location, and the site will update the times to match your time zone. It shows when the Moon will be void of course right on the front page. You can use that time to see if the Moon will be void of course when you plan on performing your operation, and if it is not you will want to keep track of the time.

The second piece of information that you will need does require you to either read an ephemeris or get ahold of an astrological calendar like Jim Maynard's Pocket Astrologer. It shows all of the Moon's aspects, including void of course, and is extremely useful for working this simple electional system. It also includes aspects formed by all the other planets, so you can use it to perform more detailed and comprehensive elections.

This piece of information is the Moon's Final Aspect. The final aspect is the last aspect that the Moon makes before it goes void of course. So you can take a look on the Lunarium site and see when the Moon will go void of course, and then consult a resource such as the Swiss Ephemeris for that time. You can also use an astrology program like Astrolog and create a chart for that time at your location.

Whatever aspect the Moon is forming according to the ephemeris or a chart that you generate at the moment it goes void of course is going to be the final aspect. You don't need to worry about the planet the Moon is forming an aspect with, you just need to know what kind of aspect it is for purposes of this method.

Positive Aspects: Conjunction, Sextile, Trine.
Negative Aspects: Square, Opposition.

If the final aspect is positive, the astrological landscape is conducive to performing a magical operation. If the final aspect is negative, then it is not. This method can also be useful in your daily life, as it is said to apply to just about everything, not just magical operations. But given the esoteric nature of magick and its affinity with the elements, planets, and signs it is especially effective for timing spellwork.

Note that the astrological moment in which a ritual occurs is the moment in which you start your ceremony. Even if you start it five minute before the Moon goes void of course, the operation will still not behave as though it happened on a void of course Moon. This is just like how planetary hours are used - as long as you start your ritual at the proper time, the entire ceremony will behave as though it was performed at that moment.

Also, this applies to practical magical operations, not other work like daily practices. You should do those on a daily basis regardless of the condition of the Moon, because that's kind of the whole point of such practices. Mystical work in general such as meditation and the like also does not seem to be nearly as affected by the condition of the Moon as is practical work.

I learned this method from local astrologer Estelle Daniels, and I believe it is included in her book Astrological Magick. While I can't say that I'm not a fan of her chatty writing style, the material in the book is good enough to make it well worth reading if you want to understand more about electional astrology and how to use it. The simple method presented here does work, but if you want to delve deeper Estelle's book is a great resource.

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