Monday, November 28, 2016

The Planetary Work - Mars

This article is Part Three in a series. Part One can found here, and Part Two can be found here.

Today I will be moving on to working with Mars, the next planet in sequence according to the Chaldean Order. Liber 777 associates Mars with "Works of Wrath and Vengeance." So Mars, like Saturn, rules over negative magical operations such as curses. Also like Saturn, Mars may be called upon for protection from such operations, as these sorts of curses represent the planet's sphere of influence.

Mars is referred to as the Lesser Malefic in astrology, and generally speaking, curses associated with Mars are less deadly than those associated with Saturn. The classic Saturn curse is a straighforward death spell, whereas Mars curses tend to be operations designed to cause pain and strife rather than outright destruction. Still, even if a Mars curse is not necessarily deadly, it can be quite detrimental.

For a complete protection spell, the best way to go is to perform operations for both Saturn and Mars. The Saturn operation protects against the bigger, more sweeping "death spell" type curses, while the Mars operation protects against the smaller, day-to-day curses that get in the way of living the kind of life that you want. These should be performed as two entirely separate operations, as multiple planets rarely combine well in a single rite without very careful design and calibration.

Even though Mars curses are in some way less serious than those attributed to Saturn, they also are more common. An intuitive psychic effect triggered by extreme anger generally falls under the Mars category, and these are the sorts of "curses" that are usually thrown about. Keep in mind, though, that magical attacks are still pretty rare overall, and before concluding that you are being afflicted by one, you need to explore every other possible cause for what you are experiencing.

To review, in Qabalah the planets correspond to the double letters of the Hebrew alphabet. The letters are so named because they correspond to two specific sounds each, and this is reflected in the dual nature of the planets. On the Tree of Life, each planet corresponds to both a sephira or a path. Many magicians refer to the sephiroth as "spheres," and you may catch me doing that sometimes as well. It is, however, not a direct translation. The word actually means "emanations" - as in, emanations of divinity. But they are drawn as circles on most diagrams of the Tree of Life, and in addition, "sephira" and "sphere" sound very similar in English.

The important thing to understand about this for practical magick is that the sephira represent states of emanation, while the paths represent movement between them. Invoking the emanations themselves produces particular visions and states of consciousness, and invoking the paths produces particular practical effects. In Liber 777, the paths and sephira have separate sets of colors, separate angels, and even separate godnames. It is relatively common for people working practical magick to ignore these factors, and, say, conjure the angel of a sephira rather than a path. Often said angel is smart enough to figure out what you really want, but it works better if you go for the right aspect from the start.

If you are now thinking that casting a Mars curse sounds fairly pointless, let me just say that I agree with you entirely. I would never renounce the use of negative magick, because sometimes it is necessary, but I make use of it quite sparingly, and never for something as dumb as simply making a target suffer. As I see it, if you're going to throw a curse, it should solve the problem that prompted you to cast it. There are very few cases where just hurting someone is going to get that done.

For example, abusive people usually just lash out more when they are in pain, so in such cases a Mars curse is often counter-productive. In my own practice, if I'm working with Mars, it usually is in its protective capacity. It should also be noted that the spirits of Mars can be charged with watching for attacks, blocking them, and retaliating against the caster. This is essentially a more advanced version of the "mirror spell" that is far more robust because it is maintained by independent spirits.

At any rate, for the Path of Mars, the four scales of color are Scarlet, Red, Venetian Red, and Bright Red Rayed Azure or Orange. For ceremonial forms, you use the King scale, which is Scarlet. Its complement is bright green. All four scales should be used to construct the sigil of the angel, which in the case of Mars is pretty easy because mostly you just use shades of red. The first piece of sigil is the character of Mars, which looks like this:

The angel of the path of Mars is Zamael, spelled Zayin-Mem-Aleph-Lamed. The Mars kamea is 5 x 5, so the valuations for Mem and Lamed need to be reduced to single digits. This yields 7, 4 (40), 1, 3 (30), to produce a sigil on the kamea that looks like this:

The final sigil is created by combining the two figures. The grid is not necessary, but I have still included it here to show the geometry. There is no formal method for determining which color goes where on the sigil, but it should include all four scales so that it will span all four Qabalistic worlds and thus constitute a complete symbol. This is largely left to your own ingenuity.

From Liber 777, incenses appropriate to Mars are Pepper, Dragon's Blood, and "all hot pungent odors." Associated plants are Absinthe (that is, wormwood) and Rue. The associated metal is iron, and the associated precious stones are ruby and "any red stone." Note that for the purposes of creating a talisman, the ruby used need not be gem quality or polished. Such stones can be found relatively inexpensively.

The plants may be dried and ground into a powder using a mortar and pestle and can be sprinkled onto the paper talisman as an offering to the angel. Likewise, a piece of iron or ruby may be placed on top of the paper talisman for the conjuration. You then use the paper to wrap up the whole thing when the ritual is complete and somehow bind or tape it together. Absinthe liquor is a good option for an alcohol offering, as one of its key ingredients is wormwood.

The god-name in Assiah for the path of Mars is Adonai (Aleph-Daleth-Nun-Yod). It is far more common for Mars operations to be taught using Elohim Gibor as the god-name for Mars, but this is actually the god-name appropriate to Geburah, the sephira of Mars. This is a key distinction that few teachers make, and is a method that we have explored at the local Leaping Laughter Lodge Ritual Workshop. It appears to be quite effective, and allows you to make a meaningful distinction between sephiroth and paths in the context of the ceremonial forms.

The full ritual is performed as follows:

0. The Temple

The best time to perform a Mars operation is on a Tuesday, during the hour of Mars. To calculate the hours, divide the time between sunrise and sunset into twelve equal parts to get the hours of the day, and the time between sunset and sunrise into twelve equal parts to get the hours of the night. Days begin at sunrise. The first hour of the day is attributed to the planet ruling the day, and the subsequent hours are assigned according to the Chaldean Order.

Saturn --> Jupiter --> Mars --> Sun --> Venus --> Mercury --> Moon

Following the hour of the Moon, the order starts over again with Saturn. While it seems complicated as first, once you do it a bunch, you'll find that it actually is pretty easy. At this point I can almost do it in my head. There are also a number of software programs that you can download to do the calculation for you, and even some websites that will tell you the hours.

There are a number of different ways to arrange the temple for an operation such as this. What we do is place an altar in the center with the banishing dagger and invoking wand. Also on the altar is a containment structure such as the Sigillum Dei Aemeth or the Trithemian Table of Art. The diagram depicting the character and sigil should be placed within this structure. A small container of some sort for offerings may be placed on the Table of Art, or you can sprinkle the offering directly upon the diagram itself.

The Table of Art shown above is from The Digital Ambler. You can read about the design and how it was put together here. You can click on the image to enlarge.

If you employ scrying in your work, an appropriate device such as a crystal or mirror should also be placed in the containment structure. If you are using incense for such an operation, the traditional method is to place the incense burner between the scryer and the mirror or crystal. Otherwise, it may be placed anywhere in the space. Some scryers like to place a taper candle on either side of the device, and while I can't say that method does anything at all for me, a number of others report good results with it.

1. Opening

Light incense, if used. Open the magical field using the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram and Lesser Ritual of the Hexagram, Star Ruby and Star Sapphire, or the Field Ritual. The usual field for practical work is the operant field, with banishing pentagrams and invoking hexagrams.

2. Preliminary Invocation

Raise energy using the Middle Pillar, Elevenfold Seal (the "First Gesture" from Liber V vel Reguli), or some other appropriate ritual method as you may know how to do.

Make the Sign of Apophis and Typhon, raising both arms and holding them straight with an angle between them of 60 degrees, and proclaim, very strongly:

Thee I invoke, who art Universe!
Thee I invoke, who art in Nature formed!
Thee I invoke, the vast and the mighty!
Source of Darkness, Source of Light.

Then make the Sign of Silence, by standing straight with one arm at your side and placing your thumb or forefinger to your lips.

3. Tuning the Space

Perform the Greater Ritual of the Hexagram for Mars. Beginning in the east, go to each quarter in turn and perform the following actions.

  1. 1. Trace the Hexagram of Mars in Scarlet while vibrating ARARITA (ah-rah-ree-tah). The hexagram of Mars is traced by starting at the upper left point and tracing the first triangle clockwise, and then moving on to the lower right point and tracing the second triangle clockwise from there.
  2. Trace the symbol of Mars in the center of the hexagram in bright green while vibrating ADONAI (ah-doh-NYE).
The final figure being traced to all four directions should look like this:

Once the four figures are traced, return to face the east completing the circle.

Then, recite the Orphic Hymn to Mars.

Magnanimous, unconquer'd, boistrous Mars,
In darts rejoicing, and in bloody wars
Fierce and untam'd, whose mighty pow'r can make
The strongest walls from their foundations shake:
Mortal destroying king, defil'd with gore,
Pleas'd with war's dreadful and tumultuous roar:
Thee, human blood, and swords, and spears delight,
And the dire ruin of mad savage fight.
Stay, furious contests, and avenging strife,
Whose works with woe, embitter human life;
To lovely Venus, and to Bacchus yield,
To Ceres give the weapons of the field;
Encourage peace, to gentle works inclin'd,
And give abundance, with benignant mind.

The space should now be tuned for the conjuration.

4. The Conjuration

Note: It has come to my attention that the manner in which I do the conjuration is less clear than I originally intended. The conjuration has been clarified to reflect this point, but it is significant enough to discuss and draw attention to it here. First of all, I am NOT working my way down through the hierarchy to get to "the guy at the bottom" (the spirit) who actually does the work. In fact, I address my charge to ALL THREE entities called below.

If the Godname is included, the four names represent the four Qabalistic worlds - Godname = Atziluth, Angel = Briah, Intelligence = Yetzirah, Spirit = Assiah). By addressing the charge in this way, the operation can "fire on all cylinders" and affect the manifest universe at all level. The Godname represents the power itself, the Angel ushers that power across the Abyss from potential to actual, the Intelligence shapes that power through the realm of formation, and the Spirit interfaces that power directly with the material world from moment to moment.

ZAMAEL, ZAMAEL, ZAMAEL, ZAMAEL, ZAMAEL (zah-may-EL). Come unto me, great and mighty angel of MADIM (mah-DEEM) by the name of the great god ADONAI (ah-doh-NYE). Send unto me GRAPHIEL (grah-fee-EL), that great intelligence of thine, and thereafter attend to my behest.

Pause until the presence of Zamael is perceived. If you don’t feel anything or see anything, wait a minute or so before continuing.

GRAPHIEL, GRAPHIEL, GRAPHIEL, GRAPHIEL, GRAPHIEL (grah-fee-EL). Come unto me, thou bright intelligence of MADIM (mah-DEEM), in the name of ZAMAEL (zah-may-EL) thy lord. Compel the spirit BARTZABEL (bart-zah-BEL) who is under thy dominion to manifest within this Table of Art, and thereafter attend to my behest.

Pause until the presence of Graphiel is perceived. If you don’t feel anything or see anything, wait a minute or so before continuing.

BARTZABEL, BARTZABEL, BARTZABEL, BARTZABEL, BARTZABEL (bart-zah-BEL). Come unto me, mighty spirit of MADIM (mah-DEEM), in the name of GRAPHIEL (grah-fee-EL) thy lord. Come forth within this Table of Art and attend to my behest, that I may wield the powers of PEH (pronounced like it looks), the path of the planet Mars.

At this point, vibrate the names ZAMAEL, GRAPHIEL, and BARTZABEL repeatedly until the presence of the angel and spirits of Mars is perceived within the Table of Art. Various methods may be used to accomplish this, from simply waiting until a presence makes itself known to scrying for an image in a crystal or dark mirror. If this is being performed as a group ritual, with everyone chanting the name together, it is helpful for the officiant or scryer to have a bell chime that can be rung once he or she perceives a presence in whatever manner. At the bell chime, the chant stops.

5. The Charge

My instructions for the charge are simple and straightforward, just as you can find in my published books. Address it to all three entities named above. Make use of an Injunction, which is what you want the angel and associated spirits to do, and a Limitation, which is what you do not want them to do. The Limitation helps you avoid "Monkey's Paw" situations in which your Injunction may manifest, but in an undesirable way.

As I mentioned above, Liber 777 catalogs the powers attributed to the planet Mars as "Works of Wrath and Vengeance." For best results, your charge should fall within that area. Otherwise, you may be asking for something outside Mars' sphere of influence. remember that this includes protection, as Mars rules over such operations and can be used to counter as well as cast curses.

At this point you may also make offerings to the angel by placing them in the small container. After the angel has had a chance to partake of the offerings, be sure to dispose of them. Alcohol such as absinthe liquor may be allowed to evaporate on its own, and natural substances may be scattered outdoors. Do not attempt to reuse an offering - generally speaking, spirits do not take kindly to that.

Your other option is to place the offerings directly upon the sigil itself, if this is practical, as it is with ground-up plant material or spices. If you decide to go this route, you will be wrapping the offering up in the paper sigil and need give it no further thought. Obviously, though, this becomes less practical with liquid offerings, such as alcohol.

Also, You should get some sort of assent from the angel before you proceed to the License to Depart, or an explanation of his objection. When the charge lies outside the angel's sphere of influence, often he will be willing to direct you to another spirit that would be more suitable to conjure in order to better accomplish your intent.

6. The License to Depart

Mighty ZAMAEL and the spirits of Thy domain, because thou hast-diligently answered unto my demands, and hast been very ready and willing to come at my call, I do hereby license thee to depart unto thy proper place, without causing harm or danger unto man or beast. I charge thee to withdraw peaceably and quietly with the blessings of the great god ADONAI, and that peace be ever continued between us. So mote it be!

7. Closing

The ritual may be closed with either a final banishing pentagram ritual or with the Qabalistic Cross performed on its own. These should match the rituals used in the opening, so for example if you opened with a Star Ruby you should repeat it or perform the corresponding version of the Qabalistic Cross.

Generally speaking, if you want to release your intent out into the world to accomplish some task external to yourself, you should close with a banishing pentagram ritual. This is similar to the chaos magick idea of releasing a sigil once it has been created and empowered.

On the other hand, if you also want the effect of the ritual to linger within your sphere of awareness, whether or not the intent is also external, you should close with the Qabalistic Cross. This stabilizes the operation, but does not detach it from your sphere of awareness.

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Cliff said...

And could be used to find a sexual partner, correct?

Scott Stenwick said...

Personally, I would go with Venus rather than Mars to attract a sexual or romantic partner. Mars is the lesser malefic, so even if you could get the angel to do it, I would be concerned about what the potential downside might be.

Anonymous said...

Maybe Cliff aims for a strictly sexual relationship, with lots of instinctual impulse towards the act of sex, rather than a more subtle, passionate engagement. At least that's what I've noticed after I've been exposed to the Martian spirits, in contrast to those of Venus.

Scott Stenwick said...

From the standpoint of the 777 system, which is what I work with, Mars is attributed to works of wrath and vengeance, and Venus is attributed to love-philtres (that is, love spells in general). I do know that Mars has those associations in some other systems, so you could always experiment and see. It might be a secondary aspect or something like that, but I've never worked with Mars that way so I can't say from personal experience.

Mars is the lesser malefic in astrology, though, so it seems to me that if you used the spirits of Mars for a relationship of whatever sort, I expect it might take on some characteristics other than what you might want.

Closedaccount said...
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Scott Stenwick said...

Just use both colors. "Red Rayed Orange or Azure" just means use red along with orange or azure. It doesn't need to be any more complicated than that.

Anonymous said...

@RAN i think this link will help you with the color scales

Closedaccount said...
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Closedaccount said...
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Scott Stenwick said...

Fixed stars and signs basically run on different levels of reality, so I do not think that Spica and Sun should conflict with one another. Spica is in Libra where Sun is in Fall, but Spica is not Libra. It just happens to be located in a degree attributed to Libra, which I don't think should be considered the same thing.

AHA said...

Hi Scott, with regards to the planetary hours- does one begin counting at the first hour of the day of the planet, as in 1am Tuesday morning? Thanks always for your excellent work.

Scott Stenwick said...

Planetary hours start each day at sunrise, not midnight. So the first hour of the day starts as soon as the Sun rises, and is always attributed to the planet that rules the day.

Also - you aren't in the next planetary day until the next sunrise. Midnight has nothing to do with that, either. So you could still do a lunar operation after midnight on a Tuesday, as long as the Sun hasn't come up.

Roth said...

as far as rituals you work for a certain number of days is there much of a difference in results between working, say, 5 tuesdays in a row on Mars hour as opposed to 5 days in a row beginning on a Tuesday, given that planets are considered detrimental to work with on some days even if it’s during their hour? or is the nature of the series kind of “locked in” to the characteristics of the timing in which the first ritual is started the same as a ritual is locked in as long as it’s begun in the right planetary hour, whether or not your working runs past that timeframe?

Scott Stenwick said...

I have not compared those two approaches so I would not be able to say for sure, but I would think that if the design of the ritual was such that consisted of a series of five days, whether you did it over five weeks or in five consecutive days wouldn't matter that much as long as you started in the day and hour of the planet. The series can be treated as a single ritual even if there are breaks between sessions, so the most important time consideration is the moment that you start.

Desmond G. said...

Hi Scott!
I share the website of william heidrick.

The truth is that in the template you use Zamael, but according to the web that I have shared, zamael is "Samael. Possibly the Devil in Hebrew literature, depending on exact Hebrew spelling --- see below. As associated with Mars, this name may merely indicate God as wrathful. Other versions are Samuel (closer this this Hebrew version) and Zamael".
Perhaps it would have been better to use Lamed Aleph Mem Kaf (Kamael).
The website is very cool and I think it can be of help.
All the best.

Scott Stenwick said...

There are variations in the spelling between different sources. The spelling that I use is from Liber 777.

Kamael is an entirely different angel, attributed to Geburah. You call on the sephirothic angel for mystical visions.

As far as practical powers go, though, it's Zamael. Zamael might have been "Shaitan" from Hebrew literature, which is a title not a name. The role of Shaitan was basically to serve as God's prosecuting attorney - which would be a reasonable role for an angel of Mars. The whole story that we see in Dante's Inferno is a later Christian invention and doesn't seem to match how the real spiritual universe is put together.

Heidrick does have a lot of cool stuff. That's a good website.

Bishop said...

If i curse someone with Mars entiites will my Karma accumulate or will i experience some sort of backslash?
In occult cummunities there are talkings about backslash,basicly you get something part of what you wish to a target!
So will i have somehow more burden if i do it?

Scott Stenwick said...

Not if you use a containment structure like a Trithemian table, Goetic triangle, Sigillum Dei Aemeth, etc.

The New Age idea of karma - where if you do something "bad," unrelated "bad" things will happen to you comes from Theosophy and is only formulated like that because Europeans didn't understand Eastern religion. The kind of "karma" that these folks are talking about isn't a real thing that happens in the world.

The only way you can get a "backlash" from a curse is if you don't properly separate yourself from the target - which is what the containment structure is for. Think about cursing like working with toxic chemicals. Some magicians report "backlashes" because they were sloppy and didn't contain their spells properly, and as a result basically got some of the negative energy on them when they cast the spell.

As long as you observe precautions to keep this from happening, you should have no problems from a technical standpoint. But also be advised that ethics and technology are two different things. Just because there's no technological penalty for something doesn't mean it's necessarily the right thing to do.

Bishop said...

When doing the Operant Field and meditation,LIber Samekh,Middle Pillar...does that somehow remediate or make the bad natal chart placement more "soft",does it remediate it more?

Or it somehow makes you not so much influenced by current astrological conditions,there is influence but it s not so dominant like in a person who don t have a daily magick practice?

Scott Stenwick said...

It is kind of like doing those practices allows you to transcend some of the negativity that can arise from your natal chart. You could think of it as a "softening" sort of effect with reasonable accuracy. The forces are just as strong, but it's like magical practitioners elevate both their consciousnesses and circumstances above them as they keep up the work. People who don't do magick tend to be ruled by such things far more than those who don't.