Inverse Ego Interlude Part 1: Mirror Mechanics At Large!

 

Understanding the dominative capacity of the human ego is a very important undertaking for any would be magician to pursue. Getting to the source of many problems, whether they be physical, energetic, mental, or otherwise, and  therefore to the root of many holistic solutions is a consequence of continually striving to understand the origins, effects, and applications of the human ego. In my previous post, I discussed the implications of gender specific applications in ego magic, but today I am aiming to dive deeper into the more general concept of the ego and what it is, technically, specifically, canonically, etc., but also what I believe to be the representative implications within human macro history,  as well as esoterica explored through some choice images from the reliably archetypal major arcana in part two. Luckily, I am feeling very sparse at the moment, so the reader will be spared the horribly self indulgent and off color introductory paragraph that usually come along with my posts… as is my ironic style, I will be forgoing the ego indulgence in the actual ego deep dive… And of course please remember that this is a Squeaky Table article which means it is not distinctly representative of the sources employed, and is inherently up for debate, critique… unique opinions and takeaways by readers on these highly subjective matters are the primary reason for its existence. Also, I did want to note, given the divisive state of the current social meta, I felt it worth mentioning that my previous post on gendered magic is meant to be interpreted in terms of energetic composition and strictly hermetic variables, rather than actual biological physical parts. Men can be Empress’, women can be Paladins, and anyone can be any combination of Empress, Paladin, or Nonbinary. A persons energetic strengths are determined by far more than assigned gender, and can vary wildly person to person based on a number of esoteric and psychological factors, including, you guessed it, ego concentration. Yeah, okay right, that being said, I’m just gonna get straight into this. 

 

Ego is defined as such by the likes of dictionary.com:

  1. the “I” or self of any person; a person as thinking, feeling, and willing, and distinguishing itself from the selves of others and from objects of its thought.
  2. Psychoanalysis. the part of the psychic apparatus that experiences and reacts to the outside world and thus mediates between the primitive drives of the id and the demands of the social and physical environment.
  3. egotism; conceit; self-importance:
  4. self-esteem or self-image; feelings:
  5. Philosophy. the enduring and conscious element that knows experience.
  6. Scholasticism. the complete person comprising both body and soul.

 

Some additional  important terms to look at and consider consistently in relation to ego are that of “id” and  “superego” which are defined as such also by the likes of old dictionary.com:

  1. Id: noun Psychoanalysis.

the part of the psyche, residing in the unconscious, that is the source of instinctive impulses that seek satisfaction in accordance with the pleasure principle and are modified by the ego and the superego before they are given overt expression.

 

  1. Superego: noun, plural Psychoanalysis.

the part of the personality representing the conscience, formed in early life by internalization of the standards of parents and other models of behavior.

 

 

Cumulatively, ego is the human capacity for self awareness. The id comprises the innate biological aspects of the human personality, such as those dealing with sleep, breath, sex, food, hunger, and other pleasure seeking compulsions such as abusing drugs or alcohol, including possible extremities such as detrimental fixations, obsessions, mental illnesses and disorders, including sexual ones such as nymphomania, or polyphagia. The superego is a lens of internalized bias and perspective that is formed as a result of early and sustained socialization, or lack thereof, and wherein the consequential perversions toward certain aspects of the id or ego are formed, established, and prioritized to be continuously referenced by the ego and therefore to inform the actions and lifestyle of a given person. Together, these three concepts are considered to be the primary components of the personality makeup for any given individual. I find it worth noting the repetition of the figure three in regards to ego magic and ego as it is considered canon in psychology.  Just as there are three gendered components of ego magic, there are similarly three components to ego psychology. While this is just a theory, I believe there is at least something to be said for the way in which the three gendered magic classes have their direct parallels  in psychology. Id is the component of the personality that is compulsory, innate, intuitive, and constant throughout nature. Our id is most directly tied to our natural cycles and similarities to other non human lifeforms, and it is the vehicle in which undeniable biological limits and realities are delivered to the psyche. In the same way, female magic is all about bending to and enduring hard natural or social limits through means of long term and often voluntary passivity and sycophancy; the id will easily take the backseat to ego or superego when balanced properly, as general ‘civilized’ human social structure dictates that interpersonal awareness (represented intrapersonally as superego) is marginally more important than blindly giving into compulsive animal instincts without restraint, and sometimes even that the two are significantly and integrally tied to another for balance and mutual satisfaction. Female magicians of the maiden-mother-crone variety tend to represent carnal temptations of the flesh through oral, sexual, and familial manipulation, so often confronting male counterparts with the momentarily satisfying but overall taxing indulgence of id (whether in terms of addiction, gluttony or sexual fixation, or perhaps blackmail of a similar degree, lmao, did someone say ‘alimony’?), over superego or ego socially minded tendencies, creating a deeply seated, often generationally reflective codependence of sorts on female or otherwise Empress centric, cooks, maids, wives, mothers, weavers, whores, virgins, and miscellaneous matriarchs such as priestesses and madams for relatively socially acceptable  satisfaction of the needs and cravings of the id. The roles of these Empress magicians is to manipulatively utilize inherent id and biological compulsions present in their male or palladian counterparts, adversaries and party members alike, as it were, to exert some degree of control over their collective lives, and to ensure that the mentally violent, physically violent, or sexually violent and other significantly dominative tendencies of men around them can have an outlet that is not detrimental or intrusive to the social scape at large; rather just select individual sycophants take this upon themselves, sometimes happily, willingly, or unknowingly, sometimes stoically and under duress. 

 

On the flip side, the superego can be matched up to the archetype of the light spreading paladin. The superego is like a clay tablet that collects the earliest detailed social evidences and patterns impressed upon an individual through developmental and other important  stages of life. Along with an iteration of stasis, unusually good things and unusually bad or straight up traumatic things that are experienced early in life will end up inscribed upon a person’s superego for their entire lives, and these experiences and evaluations are responsible for the creation of a unique and defining bias framework within an individual. If the person has a relatively balanced, happy, and well adjusted childhood, their superego will reflect this, and they ought to be fairly balanced and well adjusted throughout life until sanded down of course by the inevitably harsh nature of the world, that is unless they were born under a lucky star, as it were. If a person has a less than happy, unstable, or traumatic  childhood, it is these details that will inform their lifestyle later on until they are given the opportunity to change or confront these engrams through therapeutic means or through trial or ordeal. Sometimes the inverse occurs, and a well adjusted childhood can produce an arrogant and privileged individual who never learns or takes adequate responsibility; likewise, an unhappy childhood can inspire one to be the opposite and build a life that is built on continuous improvement and humility. Sometimes a single traumatic event can throw off an entire childhood of balance, and vice versa. It’s all a roll of the dice; being born is a roll of the dice, and living, especially as a child with little control over circumstances is equally fraught with pitfalls and therefore represent plenty opportunities for  initial impressions of social aspects of environment, life, and humanity. It is my belief that not only does this subconscious impression happen within the minds of individual people, but it too has notable social applications. The social consciousness developed parallel to the individual consciousness, so, to me at least, it stands to reason that all of humanity shares certain superego social impressions, that we receive in the starter pack when born into the human main. Innate ethical framework, such as knowing the difference between right and wrong, having a certain level of empathetic and sympathetic ability; these traits are expected in modern humans from childhood, and lacking these traits is grounds for legitimate diagnosis. It is my belief that these traits and others are part of the human wide superego, the collective consciousness if you will. Superego and conscience development is not well understood, even by experts, despite having such a grave and tangible effect on individual personality and lifestyle, and the overall state of humanity. However, it can be safely assumed that early id data consumption plays a significant role in how a superego is calibrated. For example, the way in which ones parents provide attention, discipline, affection and sustenance informs the social applications made by superego tremendously, meaning id and superego have somewhat of a symbiotic relationship, just like is represented in the Devil card in my previous post. Likewise, the inexplicable avenues of Paladin magic are all about bringing and sustaining things like freedom, light, and liberation to anyone who appears trapped by bondage, darkness, or slavery. Similarly, Paladin magic is a gamble. Any well adjusted person who understands the colorful complexity of human social scapes would see this as a hole in Palladian magic right off the bat… life is relative to perspective, and there is a lot more to human social interaction than blind justice or necessarily dual ethics. If Paladin magic is practiced with respect and discernment for circumstantial and environmental realities, it can be effective on a personal scale, but otherwise it is highly impractical, as the possibility for misunderstandings and vigilante tactics backfiring immensely is always very pressing and real. In the same way, the contents or impressions of the superego can have a similarly inadvertently adverse effect on lifestyle or decision making when looked at as a component of psychology. The extreme and often overtly childish sentiments formed and found within the superego can serve as a platform from which to be effective and socially aware, or they can serve as means to be the exact opposite. The superego is one with bias, and therefore overall social and lifestyle mission, whether consciously acknowledged or not.  Our paladin is the same, as his consistent mission to bring enlightenment is highly relative and can be misinterpreted horribly in certain situations. 

 

Finally we have the ego, who combines the id, superego, and the raw data of the environment to be the closest thing to identity, confidence and self awareness that we have as human beings. I associate ego with nondual magic, as the ego brings together the id and superego, so does non binarism bring together the male and the female as a demonstration of efficient symbiosis. If id and superego represent extreme polar ends of psychology, then the ego is the balancing filter that makes these intense concepts palatable and applicable to discerning and interacting with the many facets of existence in a static reality. Following this logic, it stands to reason that male and female ought to be interpreted as extreme polar opposites in both environmental nature and human nature, meaning within ego applications, making ritual non binarism the vehicle in which these extremes can be made socially palatable and applicable, such as through ethical and moral structures, which attempt to account for and accommodate certain psychological and biological realities, ideally in a balanced and socially just manner. This is why, ostensibly, governments and religious schools are usually associated with secret societies and are considered as having occult knowledge and ties that surpass that of the general public, as it is a matter of ego concentration. It is through the practice of ritual non binarism within organized religion, and economy and government to fluctuating extent, that the ego begins to take on a distinctly social role, and it is a large part of why irresponsible social hierophancy pervades our world today.

 

At the end of the day, I’m no biologist, so I can’t say exactly what it is that makes humans so fundamentally different from other animals. Our specific number of chromosomes seems to be an important variable, but look , I’m not a fucking scientist. What do you people want from me?  I can only go through how it may have went down. In a broad way, this is how I believe the human race began the process of becoming a majority social creature rather than a majority natural creature, or how animals became people, as it were.  This scenario I believe quantifiably illustrates the process through which humanity came to know its own ego. I don’t just mean one person did this and started the whole trend, straight line domino effect style, no. Many people did this. Nearly everyone I’d imagine, in all sorts of places. And after a while, they’d all begin to speak about it, and perhaps things snowballed from there in each party, in each case. 

 

For your considerations: 

I’ve alluded to the importance of reflection and mirrors as vehicles for developing ego and I will now expound upon this idea in a macro historical sense. This issue always comes down to a central, albeit cliché starting query: ‘what makes humans different from other animals?’. There are several acceptable answers that apply to all types and subcategories of humanity, transcending such variables as race, geography, culture, and technological, economical, political, or miscellaneous structural development. Variables such as language, storytelling, and literature, tattoos and art, clothing and adornment, metallurgy, weaponry, warfare, diplomacy, and other stark components of society. Now, what do all these things have in common (apart from the enochian and nephilim aspects, lol, we’re not doing all that right now), that make them significantly human? Well obviously this question is unanswerable and insurmountable for a reason; we can’t very well go back and see exactly how events and consequences transpired to produce the present reality, but I can speculate on a general basis, to reconstruct a rough outline of the process in which egocentric social patterns developed (and continue to develop) for humanity and not within other animals… I mean, humans truly, really are technically just animals at the end of the day. As a species, in our early formative years we struggled the same as any other animals for basic survival, and it was ultimately the gradual shift into the Neolithic that substantially marks the end of the human animal and the beginning of the human person. Again, this initial shift from nomadic hunter gathering to stationary farming and centralized social civilization was very gradual, starting in the Levant and the local middle east and Asia minor, and took centuries to reach all corners of the globe. The Neolithic was a transitional period, and even far after the canon ending of the Neolithic Revolution proper, many cultural groups continued on with traditional hunter-gatherer social strategies and play styles, and some shunned the idea of monarchs, centralization, and settlements altogether. But as we can safely say viewing with the lens of hindsight, there was and is no escaping the reach of civilization. These remaining nomadic groups were slowly, sometimes quickly, absorbed or violently coerced into accepting this as the norm. But how did it all begin? 

 

I imagine it went something like this: To all human beings, but especially those residing in harsh, arid climates such as deserts, arctic areas, the nominal ‘badlands’ as it were, with our focus today being the Levant or perhaps Northern Africa, in this case, natural symbols are of the utmost importance; they are certainly to be fixated upon in most if not all circumstances. Being able to discern a valuable symbol indicating a food or water source in a harsh climate like those mentioned could mean the difference between feast and famine, dying of thirst or getting your fill. It’s common knowledge that humankind, the human brain, has an inexplicable capacity for puzzle and problem solving. As a species, we thrive off of connecting environmental symbols and fixations, and it stands to reason that this ability would be amplified in extreme places like the birthplace of men and the cradle of civilization, where humans would be subject to increased environmental duress. Everything you see could potentially be important, and while yes, this does apply to all lifeforms, humans are exceptional in that we recognize that to be the reality. Whereas other animals rely solely on built in biological variables inborn instinctual behaviors (such as camouflage, attack maneuvers, rudimentary social impulses, etc.) to avoid threats and get on within the meta, human beings instead have the ability to situationally adapt in order to account for potential gains and threats and then preemptively, strategically utilize any reasonable means at their disposal to minimize personal damages and maximize returns. Sustainably, in the wild, this strategy is spot on; it allows our species to survive wide scale and traumatic hard times, and thrive to a fault in suitable conditions, as further and further tapping into this spec has an exponential effect. There is no way to fully know and utilize the power of the human brain and to be truly sustainable, especially on a mass scale. 

 

The mirrors helped too, I believe they were the real catalyst; the strangest thing is that reflections first occurred totally organically. Imagine a young human girl, (could just as well be a young boy, but I went girl here), so long long ago, before the first age of civilization, before writing, farming, standardization, when humans were still largely inseparable from the animals, except perhaps in our rapidly advanced social structure. Say we’re some place near the cradle of civilization; it is hot, dry, and scarce. Our girls’ days are simply tedium and survival. Helping the older women gather, cook, process all manner of vessels, tools, and coverings, knowing that will be her role one day as well. Otherwise, she is running about, playing with the other children of the group, staying near camp to avoid predators and threats. That is her primary focus, food and threats. And of course, water.  One day she is walking about in her free time, and she comes across a small pond of clear water. On the dusty ground, it appears to sparkle and shine as the light hits it. She decides to sit by the still water, to splash some water on her hot face. Before her hands can ripple the still surface, she catches her own reflection; she is suddenly taken by it. She gazes, and gazes more, finding herself infatuated with the image of her own face, so tender and symmetrical, with bright eyes, high cheeks, framed by long and wild hair. The more she stares, the more she understands. I’m sure many of us have had similar experiences, usually under the influence, of gazing at our reflection with a combination of novelty and disgust.. Think how this girl must have felt then, truly seeing herself for the first time, initially forming an opinion of the image staring back, how odd  it must’ve been to be momentarily removed from the otherwise permanent first person point of view.  Especially if we’re still placed in the dry climate of the middle east, the water itself is something significant, something to worship and fixate upon; and it so often stares back at you, fixating into your own eyes with the same intensity of your very will to survive. Viewing one’s reflection must have been such a profound and even fundamental experience for these early human mains whose lives predated ego normalcy. The reflection of the girl begs many points, and though they flood her brain and soul all at once, she is mostly consumed by knowing. This knowing is she, this is herself, this is her ego being activated, making itself known, separating itself from the environment. When she smiles, the water smiles. When she frowns, the water frowns. When she sticks her tongue out, so does the water. In everything, the harsh ecosystem reality, she inexplicably has some sort of control. This is she, appearing to me in nature, and I control she. In whatever terms these humans would have uttered, she’d get some inner confirmation of the above sentiment. In the most basic way, she appears in the water, she controls herself, and the leap that she controls the water takes root within her, in an abstract way. The girl winks her eyes back and forth to prove it is so, and after staring for long enough, she begins testing the accuracy of the reflection again, wiping dirt on her face, playing with her hair, poking and pulling at her skin. The reflection copies every single movement to a tee, it fascinates her endlessly, she could do this for hours. She is called back to the camp before long, to face another day of gathering and preparing supplies and food, avoiding threats, giving up control, and she already feels herself longing for when she will be permitted to behold herself, and allowed to manipulate reality once more through her reflection. This is how I imagine the childish beginnings of ego began within humanity. This scenario, taking place all over time and space on earth, as humans spread and develop. 

 

She is not alone though, at every point in ancient history, nearly any given human being has had to have knelt beside still water to drink and refresh, only to be met with who else but themselves. The more people began to fixate on this, the more likely they were to share these thoughts with the other members of their party, and this effect would have been streamlined within parties. Continued conversation during social interactions, meals and water cooler moments, as it were, on the topic of how one appears in their reflection would further develop the connection between drinking, ego, and community. Survival and reflection were, to some extent, synonymous. To drink, gaze upon yourself. Regardless of the applicable accuracy or lack thereof in my particular example, it is pretty apparent that these two symbols became intrinsically linked in some highly significant way, and it is not a stretch in logic to assume water played a huge role in establishing this, as still water is the most common organically occurring mirror. For most of ancient history, only the wealthy and privileged had actual mirror objects, polished obsidian mainly, which further proves my point that social evolution is one with ego, as ego concentration determines social prowess. But even those who did not have mirrors could rely on still water for a glance every now and again, a little self reflection. Making sense yet? For humanity, ego, survival, and social community are reflections of the same idea. They go hand in hand. They promote one another. Further, it warrants noting that all early and most contemporary settlements are water based and water centric. Mesopotamia, Egypt, Indus Valley, and I could go on. These pivotal first settlements and those that came after them deepen the inherent connections humanity makes between water, ego, social growth, and technological development. 

 

Happy-go-lucky metaphor aside, please do not forget the importance of mirror mechanics as we go forward. Reflections are, always and without exception, backwards, and I believe this goes for every level of reflection. If static reality is our starting state, then the mirror reflection of static reality is backwards from the physical reality, and further, the social reflection (i.e. speaking and writing about existing from an egocentric or ego aware point of view) is yet another reflection, meaning it should be parallel to the starting static state, and free of notable perversion. However! Social development is asymmetrical in the ways it appears in static and fluid reality. Ideas, languages, symbols, economic, and political structures- these dominative and invasive manifestations of social growth are the antithesis of nature, while still actively, if perversely, existing in, reflecting, and having sprung from nature to begin with. It stands to reason, as these developments are, through the view I set forth, two times removed from static reality. There is another notable schism with social development that further muddies the waters (no pun intended) of analyzing ego evolution: vocal language versus written language. It goes without saying, but I’ll say it. Speaking is one social manner, while writing and drawing are quite another. Water and mirrors do not reflect sound in the way they reflect light and image, so rudimentary social developments such as speech and other sounds are not subject to this same mirror reflection principle. This is confirmed as well by the fact that there are many non human animals that utilize sound communication. Writing and other asymmetrical printed symbols however, well as I’ve said, will always appear backward in a reflection. Prehistoric humans, prior to standardized writing, and predating even very early symbols and drawings, surely had some understanding of the importance of reflections, but without some sort of standardized writing or symbols, they would not have the extra perspective of knowing the effect of reverse perversion, as most everything which is naturally occurring appears identically to the way it does when viewed in a reflection, including human faces. That is until they became aware of the reflection principle by noting how their writing and drawing appeared backwards in all reflections. The reverse effect was obviously still in play in these prehistoric, pre-writing scenarios, there just would have been no real way of knowing about it, except perhaps the inner feeling that something about the reflection wasn’t totally right, which would have come intuitively. In other words, this burgeoning of inner appearance-centric insecurity, would well represent the early meeps and coos of the social ego coming into its own. Those who took significant note of this feeling, and regularly applied this extra discernment to themselves and their doings, became increasingly self aware. In an active ecosystem where you and your party survive using enhanced discernment as the primary strategy in both hunting, gathering, and rudimentary homemaking applications, it stands to reason that increased and hyper self discernment would  be, overall, an evolutionary superior trait. The man who knows his limits and is self critical of his role within the given circumstance and environment, stands more of a chance out on a prehistoric hunt than the man who recklessly showboats and expends energy with abandon. The woman who is hyper critical of the quality of her collection and work, what that quality means relative to her existence and her party, stands a better chance of surviving than one who lacked attention to detail and awareness of behavior. In both cases, the cliché applies here to prehistoric humanity; the wisest individuals have the best chance of survival, and the best chance of mating. We all know how evolution works, so the thought exercise basically completes itself when you apply this fractal structure to the role ego plays in human evolution in particular. In so many notable ways, enhanced ego equals survival, and enriched survival, in the case of humans, equals advanced technological and social innovation. Like I’ve pleaded, I’m no scientist, I’m not saying this sentiment is indisputable fact, but I do believe hindsight sort of speaks for itself in this case. Again, I always appreciate hearing counterpoints to these claims of mine, and having debates and discussions! That’s the main reason I record them. 

 

I think many people would argue or accept that written language is one of the most important aspects of human social development. At the least, complex standard writing systems are something that are obviously and inexplicably unique to our species. Other animals have unique specialties and high socialization levels; other animals drink still water and stare themselves in the face, and while I can’t definitively say whether they have inner monologues or egos of some kind or not, it is obvious that other animals simply do not draw and write to convey complex information in the way humans do. My initial thought is that this is because humans are unique in having complex information worth sharing. Humanity has a penchant for charming symbolism with the veil of ego that is entirely unique to us, that results in the psychological and subconscious micro levels of existence, which manifests broadly as ‘civilized and ethically correct behaviors’, which for my intents and purposes signifies advanced and nuanced social apparatuses only found in human kind. Survival by itself is simple. You just do it. Thriving requires finesse, and finesse requires troubleshooting, and that requires an intergenerational and communicative social element. In order to facilitate a proper communicative execution, all parties contributing require a unique and self developed understanding of themselves relative to the environment and the given subject being discussed. Otherwise, the dialogues to follow would be unfruitful and empty. These collaborative and egocentric discussions on solutions to events and issues that pose a threat to safety or normalcy is how human beings infuse their world with the individual egos of those involved, and therefore becoming a sort of collective ego force that is exerted upon the environment through further symbolic and effective means such as environmental and social manipulation and incremental improvements in architecture and technology, and of course the social processes that would allow solutions to come to fruition. The fruits of these discussions were sometimes so valuable that someone likely figured there ought to be a way to record them for posterity or reference, and there you have it. Symbols came first, then came the languages not long after… comparatively. Knowing the importance of reflections and mirror-like surfaces in the development of early egocentrism, imagine the relative shock and awe when a given individual or group discovered that their careful symbols and writings appeared backward, all but unintelligible, when viewed upon these sacred reflections. The reactions to this discovery were surely varied, but this compounding revelation had to have to been noted in each case as something significant. The way I see it, this pattern of mirrors invoking ego reactions within the human brain, over time triggering such profound physical manifestations as written symbols and languages, and then these resulting symbols not being compatible with reflection, is representative of overt and intense social structures that are ego based and not nature based, being possible overall, but ultimately unsustainable and incompatible with the realities of natural cycles. 

 

However, through properly balanced ego applications, these two facets of existence, ego and environment, can be combined to create holistic applications that allow for the best of both components to shine and sustain adequately. When it comes to the human egocentric playstyle, there is a simple set of expressive formulas. To survive, see yourself in everything (the basis of empathetic nature id energy). To thrive beyond your means, see yourself in that which appears to share your goals, and attack, avoid, or appeal as necessary (the basis of sympathetic (or sometimes a-sympathetic) social superego energy). To excel sustainably, be actively aware of how and on what levels you as a free entity may go about balancing these two extreme scapes (the basis of combinative ego energy). I know there are countless more variable connections that could be made to support or counter this particular view I have established, but for the sake of the exercise, let’s assume this is the case: writing, art, language, and other notable social and technological advancements made individually or communally, incrementally or suddenly by humanity at large are all reflective manifestations of ongoing, ever increasing mixing of hyper awareness of both fluid and static reality and potent ego input. 

 

Tune in next time for real reason anyone gives a fuck, I’d imagine, the esoteric connections via Tarot. I thought long and hard about what specifically to analyze for this particular piece. To explain the concepts of Empress, Palladian, and Hermetic magic, I used the imagery from the Empress, the Magician, and the Devil, respectively. For the id, superego, and the ego, I’ll be looking at the Moon, Strength and The High Priestess to represent id, the Chariot, the Hermit, and Death to represent superego, and the Lovers, Justice, and Temperance to cross reference the social level of combinative ego magic applications with the less dynamic socio-psychological elements of ongoing ego development. At the time of publishing part one here, I am about a fourth of the way done with the tarot analysis, so expect it shortly. I was going to publish them as a single entry, but fuck, it was looking like it might hit 20,000 words, and that’s just excessive, even for me, thus parts one and two were born. SPEAKING OF! I am excited to announce that Squeaky Table will be going podcast here soon. I am already writing episode one and I will be looking for guests as well! The blog is staying, obviously, but I just thought it’d be fun to expand my horizons!

Gendered Magic Analysis: Empress, Palladian, and Nonbinary Playstyles

 

Magic is the sort of topic that when significantly explored will generally lead to more questions than answers. I believe this is by design, and that abandoning or questioning  traditional notions of knowledge  is the best way to live a magical life, as it were. Magic, at its core, is an inexplicable phenomenon that combines the inherent power of the cosmological macro/micro nature of existence and the human ego in order to create or control a given circumstance or set of circumstances. Magic within pop culture is generally either boiled down to  thematic elements or a force of “deus ex machina” wherein the limits of human existence are challenged or broken altogether by forces beyond general understanding, in order to aid in the development of the plot or to convey certain motifs. Fairy godmothers, sinister warlocks, cackling witches, and wise wizards and mages who have superhuman abilities to predict the future and manipulate reality, that sort of thing. The overall splendor and fascinating characterization of magical figures in media and literature are, like most media representations of anything, are not based completely in reality, and certain key liberties are often taken by the creators of these characters for ease of plot and motif structure. The “truth” about magic is altogether too esoteric and complex to be properly illustrated in media, especially popular culture; the reality of magic and how it is conducted in actual practice is not conducive to the construction of narratives that’d keep an audience’s attention or earn a decent profit. It is primarily for this reason that the realities of magic and magical thought are not properly explored or demonstrated in media. Additionally, it can be logically assumed that a person who has been trained as or accrued significant experience as a screenwriter or media professional would have minimal technical knowledge of “practical magic” unless they are also an amatuer or armchair  hobbyist in that respect. Even in this case, even if the given media article is a result of magical thinking or bona fide ritual, it can be just as easily assumed that the ease of communicating palatable  plot structure or themes would, in terms of overall convenience, rise above a more realistic depiction of magic in said media. I will not go as far to say that these misrepresentations of magic are deliberately misinforming and misleading, as that take toes a fine social line, but I will attest that such misrepresentations are very clearly real and do have some sort of degrading effect when employed en masse, such as in the over saturated modern world. In another light, proper practice of magic is 90% discipline, tedium, and ritual, and only 10% result. The results of practical magic are closer to intangible paradigm/engram shifts, rather than obvious shifts in reality. Any activity of this tedious nature translates into boring media; people read books,  watch films and shows for palatable, gratifying, or otherwise compelling content, and the minutiae of successful magic practice simply does not reflect well into consumable narrative, despite media being a highly effective magical tool in its own rite. 

It is not a stretch to say that the majority of younger, first world demographics not only most reliably consume and process absurdly copious amounts of both targeted and random, miscellaneous media, but also have allowed or been forced to use media and media centric depictions of reality as primary building blocks for their own understanding or experience of reality. Whereas the older generations would base their paradigms and understandings of reality on solely experiential evidence, with perhaps some casual or extreme sentimentality towards select media peppered in. For example, a person born before 1980 would be reasonably expected to have a general life perspective and set of biases based firstly on her own accumulated experiences, relationships, and primary environments, and likely a less potent certain combination of celebrities, books, television programs, films, music groups/genres, or comparable media would be secondary in overall perspective or bias influence; largely due to the comparative lack of access to technology and media until later and later into life; it was more of a novelty than an undeniable force acting upon reality. Conversely, a person born after 1990 would have been exposed to so much highly varied media just in the beginning, formative years of life that it has had a significant impact on multiple developmental factors, one such factor being the overall levels of experiential evidence present in a Millennial or Gen Z  individuals understanding of reality. The point I mean to make is that the  line between tangible, experiential reality and ego centric depictions of reality present or based in media has long been far from crystal clear, and this applies doubly or even thricely to depictions of reality for people born after 1990. Of course the evolution of general, popular understandings of faith and magic are nearly directly tied to the development of media (beginning with the earliest symbols and cave paintings), throughout history, and ease of access  to media, and therefore information of varying reliability, has proven to be inversely proportional to overall questioning the importance of or abandoning of faith as a concept altogether. Seeing as faith in a given higher order or power is the most primary vehicle for all religious applications, including  magic applications of nearly any kind, it certainly is not a stretch to say that media and media depictions of reality play a significant role in not only on-going generational development but also in inter-cultural, socio-religious development at large. I look forward to apt critiques and ensuing debates on the former statement, but given the objective and abstract subject matter discussed on this particular site (that being the implications of faith and magic on the macro human condition), I will, as is the custom, maintain that the views expressed here are my own and are never distinctly representative of  the various sources I employ, and should actively be considered as such. As is custom, any and all sources listed on Squeaky Table articles, are stand alone resources that ideally speak uniquely for themselves and invite fresh opinions from individuals on the initial and subsequent reads. To repeat the thesis succinctly, magic is, at its most basic level, the combinative aspects of pseudo-predictable cosmological (or social) patterns and controlled ego injection by a human party utilized in order to manipulate certain key abstract aspects of reality, and as the previous point wishes to plead, there are several factors beyond social and generational that dictate and control the variety of or ability to properly apply magical thought on any scale. The most base and honestly prominent of these miscellaneous factors is arguably the gendered aspects of magic (are you shocked? I’m certainly not), and this is what I am aiming to discuss in this particular article.  

 

Part A: Female Centric Magic- Empress Energy, Hecate, and Sycophantic Strategy

The Empress is a tarot card whose symbolic implications I have explored in more depth in previous posts, and will likely discuss further in future posts. Succinctly, the Empress is the cumulative female archetype. The card’s imagery heavily signifies the natural reaction of human sycophancy toward inexplicable higher powers, and the resulting abundance as a successful navigational and social tool. The Empress represents the combined utilization (deliberate or otherwise) of reflective lunar magic, absorption/reproductive earth magic, and a necessary dose of aesthetic Venusian magic as well as clever Mercurial magic. A careful and circumstantially unique combination of these skill sets and a relatively constant environment in which to practice and hone them is the basis of female centric magic. As with most faith based inquiries, the eastern and western hemispheres vary in their religious developments, and the issue of female centric magic is not an exception. Eastern female magic is associated with the concept of “yin” or general passivity. In Daoism and later Confucianism, the concept of “yin” is integrally tied to women’s energetic  roles in life, family, and overall. Passivity produces a female who is happily or stoically resigned to a secondary societal placement, and this is not viewed as an affront to feminism or liberalism, but rather reflects a cosmological “least common denominator”, and therefore the “natural order”.  Eastern female magic sees passivity, the path of least resistance, endurance, as the ultimate wisdom. The concept of duality illustrated as “yin” and “yang” is responsible for perpetuating this Eastern norm, as one is cosmologically represented to require the other for maintained balance, and eventual transcendence, which is the ultimate goal of most Eastern thought schools. Similarly, the emphasis of ancestral appeals in the aforementioned Eastern thought schools, and the integral components of karma and reincarnation in religions such as Hinduism and Buddhism play into the necessarily large scale nature of existence. Eastern thought generally urges one to play to the best of their means, and not beyond them, whether taking the shape of filial piety, meritocracy, dharma, or something comparable, and this general idea translates into the more esoteric avenues of Eastern female magic. On the other side, major Western religions such as Christianity and Islam are “sycophantic religions” because the default premise and practice of these particular religions is, well, inherently sycophantic, and heavily reliant on sycophantic ideals and appeals. Passivity and sycophancy are not the same, but they produce similar results when applied to engrams, relationships, and magic. Sycophancy differs from passivity in one key way. While passivity is a matter of taking the path of least resistance, a sycophant is a woman who uses long term, strategic manipulation to turn relatively unfavorable circumstances into relatively favorable circumstances through varying means. In general western religion, “God”, (or his nominal equivalent) is a male figure who has been angered by humanity, and who demands a significantly familial and historically  male and palladian sacrifice for appeasement. This trend is apparent throughout Hellenistic mythology, including that of most cultural hosts, donors, and precursors, namely Mesopotamian and Egyptian, and of course the resulting biblical structures as well.  These male figures, more often than not an angry father and his martyr, continually take credit for not only the creation of all, conceivable and non, but similarly for later avoidance of adverse after effects caused by humanity; humanity ought to be unwaveringly grateful to the martyr, as they are the ultimate savior, and z alone are responsible for diverting the ire of the creator away from his most perpetually disappointing side project, humanity. These types of “sycophantic” religious thought schools call for total, unquestioning adherence to these figures and ideas in order to even be considered for successful initiation, practice, and access to the varying reward tiers; they are complex, symbiotic ecosystems for sycophants and hierophants of varying degrees, busied like drone ants tasked by their queen who controls them with pheromone signals, except they are humans working tirelessly to build a fear based mental and even physical  empire for an invisible God and pursuant of an inaccessible afterlife. Diversion is the first and official language of the sycophantic Empress energy both on this larger religious scale and on smaller scale magical lifestyle applications. Similarly, sycophantic magicians, Empress’ as it were, use and manipulate  familial and sexual dynamics to make their desires and needs appear identical to those of the given hierophant; creating a system of interwoven agendas all operating under the same general moniker and principles.  Eastern thought schools and Biblical or neo-Abrahamic  entities are, at this point and for my purposes, separate from the practice of individual lifestyle magic, and I only mention them to demonstrate what I mean when I say something is passive or sycophantic. If you want or need to gain access to esoteric knowledge, and therefore power,  in a way that is active, yet  indirect and reliant on skillful connections and blind faith in process rather than tiered defensives or brutal offensives, then you wish to gain sycophantic prowess. 

 

The figure of Hecate is the patron Goddess of witchcraft because her archetype illustrates how passive and sycophantic strategies play out chronologically in a feminine Empress  life cycle. This is illustrated as three stages, the three faces of Hecate, “Maiden”, “Mother”, and “Crone”. Maiden is the start of a females life. It is in this stage that she is, generally, subject to the will of her parents, her male family members, her early betrothed, or perhaps to an elder or matriarch (this hierarchy will vary). A Maiden is most imaginative and altruistic, while also generally having relatively little influence over events and circumstances, and her sycophantic appeals for interest or development would be made to the aforementioned parties. Mother is the interlude in a females life, when she has accrued her own burgeoning family of in-laws and offspring  to care for and support. In this stage, a woman would be nearly totally subject to the will of her family patriarch and/or the demands of her children. In this stage, the Mothers personal development becomes directly tied to that of her responsibilities, her family unit, and while the ordeals of marriage and child rearing tax a significant amount of her freedom, she is, ideally, left altogether with more control over her circumstances and a tangible increase in material and emotional security. The mother stage can be skipped if it is required or prudent, but absence of these connections and experiences, especially if they are not replaced with something equally consuming such as meaningful work, education, or religious undertakings, in certain circumstances, can be devastating or stifling later in life by creating a gap in intuition. Crone is the final stage of a woman’s life, wherein the responsibilities of child bearing and rearing are no longer a prominent or pressing concern, and the quality of this stage is determined by quantity of seeds planted, literally and metaphorically, and quality of sycophantic behavioral strategies developed in the previous stages. She need only appeal to her patriarch, when applicable, and if the Crone has played her hand well, her patriarch views her as a respected, beloved equal, and the Crone stage is a peaceful and tranquil time where all previous sycophancy pays off in spades, and she is both free to live as she pleases and is well supported. The trade off made by the Crone is the loss of altruism and absence of youth resulting in the gain of significant experiential knowledge, circumstantial clout, and wisdom.  While at first glance, this three fold cycle does not seem necessarily magical, look deeper at the implications. There is something inherently, undeniably magical and directional about a life well planned, well lived, and well appreciated, a life wherein consequences and memories bleed into one cohesive and information packed tapestry, and that can be used simultaneously as a reliable  source of admiration as well as one of education and direction. In lay mens terms, this all encompassing tapestry that comes together as a result of a life lived in pursuit of passive, sycophantic, Empress, and/or  Hecate female magic (whether accidentally or deliberately) is the closest one could come to accurately describing the phenomenon of “intuition”… that would be my guess as to why the three fold female life cycle seems like an obvious reality rather than a magical endeavor; it is, within itself,  the very definition of intuitive. However, the level of purposefulness and deliberate intention applied in these undertakings, as well as blockages or obstacles built in or stumbled upon, will have a significant effect on whether or not the desired ends are achieved in practice.

 

In nature, whether in eastern or western terms, females are receptacles. They hold, nurture, and perpetuate the continuum of existence, and they reflect, sustain, and internalize  all of the valuable data they encounter; modern human women do it with tact and flair as well. This is not an affront to feminism or liberalism, it is the stone cold facts. The manner in which a woman will receive and process source varies on a number of circumstantial, Hermetic factors, but it is her role entirely, and ignoring or running from  this fact (as opposed to embracing or skillfully manipulating the reality) removes much of a woman’s capacity for magical intention applications. This is not meant to be an inflammatory conclusion, but should rather be considered as a logical warning. You would not build a sky scraper on flawed foundation, and likewise you should avoid magic coming from flawed or unclear intention, as yearning for or establishing intention based outcomes on an incomplete or inauthentic psychological reality, whether it is experientially based or abstractly, media based, will backfire or lead to burnout; ennui and wasted energy at best, and life altering, consequence rich denial at worst. 

 

Part B: Phallic Magic- Magician Energy, Paladin Archetypes, and Dominative Strategy

 

Many people agree that a major aspect of what separates humanity from the animals is our capacity for understanding and utilizing language and  tools at a questionably exponential pace. The Magician is a card that I have mentioned in previous writing, but not to the extent that I ought to. Condensed, the Magician represents the dawn of intelligent, “civilised” man through tools and symbols. In the traditional Rider-Waite art, the tell-tale yellow background of dominative male energy engulfs the scene, and unnaturally decorative and complimentary flora fills the edges, leaving our proud magician and his sacred objects framed and on full display. Passivity be damned, he seems to convey smugly, as the longer you stare you realize he controls the nature around him and not the other way around; the infinity sign above his head suggests that he has figured out how to tap into source and keep this concentration up indefinitely. Looking further into the imagery you’ll notice something else. His hands are outstretched in a way that mirrors the hand placement of Baphomet on the Devil card, and the items present on the table are the same ones needed for Satanic ritual: a cup, a wand, a sword, and a coin emblazoned with a pentagram, otherwise known as a pentacle (buffs will also note that these are the four suits of the minor arcana as well). The last item is the actual phallus being wielded by the magician (not the one beneath the robes either, an actual dick shaped item that the magician is holding in his left hand), whose emphasized positioning suggests that the phallus has something significant to do with the way in which our magician is able to manipulate what grows  around him and where. If we pan to cosmology for reference, we all know that the ultimate “source” is obviously the sun. All variables, on earth and  throughout the solar system, would not only appear drastically different than they do at present, but would be perhaps altogether observationally moot if it weren’t for the sun being in the particular yellow giant activity level and being located exactly where it happens to sit. If you can even rudimentarily understand source, you can understand your own existence relative to source, then you can appear to temporarily manipulate the laws of nature; this is the basis of Phallic, Palladian magic. A “paladin” (and in this context I mean the RPG character class, and not one of Charlemange’s frat bros), is a male magician who practices (deliberately or non) phallic magic; paladins are, ideally, noble  bringers of enlightenment, and their mission in life is “unburdening” all of those who they are able from “bondage”. In cosmology, we have the sun whose light and heat allows all life and movement to happen and be observed, “unburdening” the local cosmos form the “bondage” of freezing darkness. In nature we have men whose magic goo can “unburden” maidens from the “bondage” of an empty, childless life. Of course in social nature, there are the great kings and later emperors who would “unburden”  ancient nomadic cultural groups from the “bondage” of barbarism, and selflessly provide them with a steady if deteriorating diet and opportunities for slave labor on temples and statues. Contemporarily, religiously speaking we have old Jesus Christ who turned water into wine, and “unburdened” the human race from the “bondage” of sin and very selflessly offered to forgive each and every sinner, (for a small fee, payable to the Italians for some reason).  Jesus’ literary nemesis, Lucifer, or Satan, is also a paladin,  the primary difference between the two being that Jesus is a symbol for large scale and oppressive pseudo-enlightenment through means of emotional and social manipulation, while the idea of Satan advocates for individual or small community enlightenment through interpersonal and intrapersonal education and experiential means. Paladins appear to manipulate the laws of nature, but they are still ultimately subject to them. While this sounds like an absolutely unbeatable way to live and operate, always out to share light and improve life, the variables and state of parties receiving palladian aid can be vast and are not always in accordance with the mission or offerings of the paladin. If this is not addressed, it can be catastrophic over time; while female magic generally promotes following and adhering to patterns and processes of nature, male magic is all about throwing a bone in said processes in order to manipulate them, or appear to manipulate them, and on a large enough scale, can cause incredible imbalance in the natural order over enough time. Satanic or simplified and localized palladian lifestyle magic can be effectively practiced on an individual or small collective, community scale, and when arrogance is kept in check by means of various sacrifices and cleansing rituals using the components of “magician” energy. However when applied to large groups of varying or unwilling people it can be devastating, and the consequences can snowball. Unlike women who are passive receptacles of source and life, men can more easily see themselves as being one with source rather than ones who must interact with it, as the phallus’ found on their bodies contains something akin to a miracle elixir for life when/if mixed properly within a female receptacle.  Over time, the fanaticism over and perversion of this basic function has taken countless forms, most important of which, arguably, being “civilisation”.  While female centric magic revolves around receiving input from and internalizing source, male centric magic revolves around sustained physical manipulation and ostensible controlling of source through outright dominative means. For instance, in regards to human evolution, pre-historically ancient egalitarian or matriarchal hunter-gatherer societies survived for aeons, and were content to wait passively for food or meet it at the source, and to rely on the patterns of nature to collect sustenance. However, the flip side of that, patriarchal civilisation, relies hugely on not only physically dominating resources such as earth, light, and water for the purposes of centralized farming and architecture, but equally relies on mental and religious domination (and as we’ll see, overtime, necessary degradation… one side fills the other, leading to the cycle of destruction and creation within human empires and civilisations, en masse) of those who would dwell within such a civilisation. This task of large scale and  deliberate centralization and concentration of energy through civilisation, if it could simply be done with cum and willpower, would be easily achieved by any animal race on earth, but as you might have noticed, this is not exactly the case. The ways in which one can control their environment through phallic magic are complex and varied in today’s over stimulating world (the cumulative product of once divided but now globally interwoven and unbalanced, unchecked phallic “paladin” magic no doubt), but execution ultimately comes down to the utilisation of three main components: technology, symbols, and ego. Ego is the real magic elixir, as mixing it with nature and cosmology, such as was done by prehistoric humans who first saw their reflections in still water and polished obsidian, leads to extremely potent environmental symbolism, which leads to new connections being made between the internal world of the mind and the external world of reality. This progresses into language which leads to the sharing of said connections, patterns, problems, and solutions between individuals, creating community beyond necessity, and ultimately, the development  of innovative novelties- tools and technologies. The cycle folds in on itself indefinitely, like as depicted by the infinity sign over our Magician’s head, as reality builds and rebuilds itself,  upon these new tools and technologies, while also becoming  increasingly indiscernible from and reliant on collective ego development. This pattern is the basis of dominative strategy; in order to maintain male or palladian control over something as inconceivably large as patriarchal civilisation, the paladins or leaders in question must double down on oppression in order to keep the imbalanced resource intake and populations from spilling over. Irresponsible dominative strategy, whether warranted or wanted or otherwise, systemic refusal to bend to or blend with elemental realities, is, the way I see it, the primary cause of both collective and individual Malthusian continuums. Female magic is self sustaining, self balancing, while male magic is simply quite the opposite, and sincere efforts to respect and balance with and appeal to female energetic counterparts must be ritually included in palladian undertakings if long term success is desired. Male human magic, for all its direct connection to source and all its dominative capacity, still operates on a female scape, the earth, and relies on female energy to provide it with every single other ingredient and component (just like semen is nothing but pointless excretion without an egg to fertilize, and the suns light is just an standard and unremarkable byproduct of fission without an earth to absorb it, reflect it, and facilitate awe). When there is no sacrificial or regenerative efforts put in with said female energies, they retaliate, slowly and over time, with social imbalance, deterioration, and eventually environmental cataclysm (this is the natural order regardless, but intelligent life offers a separate and unique perspective relative to its own ego and inextricably cyclical nature).  Whether this means the end of a civilisation or the end of the personal cycle is subject to scale. Once again, this is not to condemn the practice male dominative magic, but rather a warning. Know what you are doing, to whom, and where, always remember to give credit where credit is due, and actively consider and understand yourself, your intentions, and your actions in relation to all involved parties and energies. Dominative strategy can make your life, or it can destroy it, often it is both along a learning curve, while ultimately a matter of perspective. It’s all up to the palladian practitioner to be effectively balanced and strategic, and to always be accountable for all of his moves, manipulatives, and tulpas. 

 

Part C. Hermeticism, Baphomet,  and The Myth of Duality

For anyone who has so far felt marginalized or unaccounted for, I assure you there is more the story of duality than male and female. See, the very fact that dual existence as a concept is a thing  necessarily dictates that a non dual existence is equally possible and even prevalent; if there is, there musn’t be. Following this logic, it stands to reason that unified, indivisible, and agender magic must also have its claim of the spoils of ego, and it most certainly does. While there are several undeniably dual and opposite forces found in both cosmology, nature, and humanity, there are also those equally naturally occurring elements that are totally agender, non-binary, and non-polar; things that transcend duality, and therefore gender, entirely. For instance, some of the most enduring concepts and life forms are such invisible forces that impose hard limits onto the universe, to those teeny-tiny microscopic hermaphrodites who so very often represent hard limits to life; all coming into existence built in with everything they need to self perpetuate indefinitely or reproduce asexually; from gravity, time, and other mathematical models representing cosmological constants such as the electromagnetic spectrum and the speed of light on the inanimate side, to most if not all prokaryotes and several eukaryotes;  bacterias, viruses, certain fungi, plants, and small, spineless animals on the flip. These things, asexual or agendered things, are considered “Hermetic”, as their male and female components are one in the same; they work so closely together in such close proximity that they are for all intents and purposes indiscernible. In Hellenistic mythology, Hermes is the Olympian credited with the creation and patronage of fertility, husbandry, commerce, language, sleep, thieves, and travel. He is also known as “messenger of the Gods”, leader of the nymphs and graces, and he is also accredited with the invention of the lyre.  All of this by itself is common knowledge, but when following the themes of this article, what do all these specialities have in common? Hermes is not in charge of things black, white or even gray… he is a patron of an accurately colorful, confusing, and ensnaring reality. All of his specialties shirk duality as a necessity by being  combininative; purposefully mixing  ego with nature, male with female, mortal with immortal, permanent with temporary, and the light with dark. It is for this reason that music, speech, fertility and husbandry, medicine, and many abstract aspects of esotericism fall under his domain; practices that are all known for having massive ritual significance throughout so many world cultures, renowned for their capacity to heal and induce trance like states, and most importantly, either do not require specific gendered assignments or employ sustained disregard or unifying balance of dualism to be effectively practiced. This is the basis of hermetic magic, or hermeticism; harnessing your capacity for magical thinking and action by tapping into something akin to pranic or universal life force that transcends all dual or social boundaries. This is best done through hermetic means that are meditative or can easily put people in a trance like state;  things like singing, playing music, meditation, lucid dreaming, travelling, homeopathic healing, smoking, farming, gardening, or breeding other animals, tantric movements like dance, yoga, and sex, et cetera. Unlike the dual facets of magic previously presented, hermetic magic transcends these kinds of social caveats, as these practices and activities are stand alone, highly individualized, and do not require any crazy metaphors or cosmological symbolism to make sense of. Instead of picking and choosing cosmological parallels to reflect a social agenda, as is done by ego heavy paladins and empresses, hermetic magicians simply and without fanfare, reflect the entire picture of existence, so to speak, as it is defined by the limits of space, light, and time… it is “as above so below”, whether they understand the full plethora of implications or not. 

 

Despite being the namesake, there is actually a second figure that does a better job of more blatantly conveying the themes of hermeticism than Hermes: Baphomet. Baphomet is most often falsely identified as being a Satanic figure, but Baphomet is not considered a paladin, and the two are not considered to be the same. Baphomet is a winged, horned, bearded goat with bird claws on his feet and both male and female genitalia. The Devil tarot card is a famous depiction of this figure, and in the image, there is a nude male and female who are voluntarily chained to the throne from which Baphomet towers over them with a knowing and cautious look upon his face and a pentagram nestled between his horns. The man and woman are human, but they have grown horns and  tails; from the woman’s tail sprouts a pile of berries or fruits, while the mans tail burns an enlightening ember (Charizard style). Baphomet’s arms are outstretched, with his left hand (curiously emblazoned with what looks suspiciously like a cross), raising above the female figure, and his right gesturing down behind the male figure, grasping a large wand with a wolf or dogs mouth on the end,  from which the flame on the mans tail seems to originate. This perhaps could suggest at the “left hand path” and “right hand path” magic styles referred to in canon by hobbyists and practitioners, with Baphomet or contemporary “devil” worship representing the third camp of “chaos magic”, but this is just a fun theory. Viewing this image next to the Magician card, the arm placements of the central figure is the same, but the hand holding the highlighted item (that being the phallus in the magicians left hand pointing upward, and the fire-dog-stick-thing in Baphomet’s right hand pointing downward), appearing perhaps as some kind of perverted mirror image. Additionally, the man holds some sort of dish beneath Baphomet, ostensibly to collect samples of something or other or perhaps just to reference the genitals. There are countless iterations of what this card means, but for me it is descriptive of the all encompassing nature of hermetic entities. In a single asexual or nondual entity, there are female parts that provide the necessary nourishing components, there are male parts that serve as a connection to source, and there is of course some mechanism that imitates or channels source and allows for these components to work as one cohesive unit. Although the initial energy given off by this card is one of fiery oppression, the details and implications speak separately and convey a different tune; one of relative simplicity, cyclical sufficiency. The man and woman on the card seem content as can be, and why wouldn’t they? There’s food to feed them, fire to warm them and light up the room, and they are not only continually near the source of their sustenance, but integrally and unabashedly connected. They may first appear to be in bondage, but they are not, rather they are engaged in voluntary symbiosis with Baphomet, whether physically or simply mentally, innately, conceptually. I wager the reason this card gets such a vast variation of interpretations is because bondage and symbiosis are not exactly mutually exclusive, and every situation where these principles are applied can appear one way and truly be another; it’s all a very, very subjective matter of situational perspective. For instance, for  a long while in human history, and even still to a certain, if lesser, extent today, marriage and slavery appear starkly similar in writing, especially when you consider the long used system of dowries and the consistent commoditization of women, even those who are considered free agents. However, knowing the glaring differences in definition outright, if and when these relationships are executed accordingly, a wife and an enslaved person are very obviously two different classes of individual, despite the dogmatic and conceptual overlap between their predefined social roles. The specifics or ethical implications of a given husband/wife and owner/slave relationship are all ultimately situationally based, and the relationship of the nude couple and Baphomet is equally subject to the perspective of those involved. Perhaps duality does add to ones sense of identity; it fills life up with exciting arcs and challenges you wouldn’t otherwise encounter, but ultimately it is frivolous. I’m not saying there isn’t anything to be said for it, because in terms of evolution and social applications,  it is certainly the most interesting and fractally fascinating, but it is not the most efficient strategy, strictly speaking. Chronologically speaking, nonbinarism is the first strategy, and the most enduring; the first and oldest known lifeforms are reproduce asexually, and conceptual models such as light and time are also devoid of any sort of obvious or required a polar element, but rather are consistently fluid, spectral, and self sustaining. Despite this, it is equally worth noting that there is very little to say about the social tendencies of such asexual or nondual exhibitions if anything can be said at all, as asexual things do not require any sort of socialization to survive and thrive. The endurance of literal and conceptual nonbinarism has everything to do with its proven, if inexplicable, ability to endure, and is not due to any of the nuance that familially intelligent or socially aware lifeforms rely on. 


Like was stated previously, if there is, there musn’t be, and if there isn’t, there also must be.  Nondualism is the absence of duality; in lifestyle magic practice it is the balanced union of duality achieved through hermetic activities, resulting in a temporary cancellation of duality, and therefore a period of relative clarity. The “myth of duality” is a very interesting term that invokes several complex reactions for me; if a “myth” is essentially a massive, culturally charged story,  but there is plenty of duality in nature and cosmology, how can duality be a “myth”?  My conclusion is that while it may not be a fiction,  it certainly is a culturally charged idea, and when viewed through the lens of ego can take on certain epic and mythic aspects. It is undeniable that we experience light during the day and darkness during the night, all life does in fact  live to die, equally men and women are fundamentally different and built differently spanning countless species. However, the reflective social frameworks of “bad” and “good”, “ethical” or “immoral”, et cetera, are not naturally or cosmologically occurring; though to live on earth as a contemporary human, you’d be hard pressed to realize that “right” and “wrong” are only fractally sound engrams established by a force of social evolution that is separate from that of biological evolution, and, as far is understood, totally exclusive to the human race, and not at all physical realities present throughout life on earth or in general. It’s not a stretch to assume that naturally occurring and cosmological duality and the drastic effects it continually has on the environment on earth, whether in terms of climate  or population concentration, was likely the primary fear and inspiration for these social dualities to mesh with human ego (and therefore environmental symbolism)  allowing them to develop exponentially over time throughout worldwide settlements, and relative to geography and culture. As human societies began to evolve rapidly, the premise of hermeticism or religious rites revolving around acts of ritual nonbinarism began to emerge alongside them as taboo and esoteric avenues for religiously significant and sacred balancing activities like those mentioned previously in regards to the Hellenistic figure of Hermes. Through all levels of ego injection and gendered perversion within world  religion and esoterica, hermetic elements remain both prevalent and effective, and most religions and spiritualist schools have and continue to retain hermetic elements as integral to their practice, usually through musical or tantric means. My point is that these Hermetic elements transcend cultural and gender barriers, and always seem to be strikingly constant throughout human culture; they are never, by themselves, considered “right” or “wrong”, they are just consistently reliable and  useful, and therefore employed often and indefinitely. The “myth of duality” is not that duality is an outright myth, but that there are mythical depictions of duality which are dangerously, nearly identical to cosmological and naturally dual realities when viewed through an ego heavy or strictly human perspective. This conceptualized “myth of duality” is the closest thing I can find to a warning when advising on the practice of hermetic magic. Do not be tricked by social constructs that appear to reflect the natural order; remember that mirrors, whether naturally occurring on the surface of still water or purposefully manufactured on a reflective substance, are completely accurate except for the fact that reflections always appear backwards from what is really there. This is not an issue for things that are necessarily and naturally symmetrical, or for things that do not employ or understand abstraction or  symbolism, as these things generally do not have the ego capacity to consider the nature of their own reflections. If we consider the overbearing human ego to be a conceptual if naturally occurring mirror that reflects what it absorbs from its environment, and similarly broadcasts a reversed depiction, this should be noted when ego is applied or injected into a given circumstance. Take care to remember that ego based abstract symbolism, and physical manifestations of said abstraction, such as ritual, art, and language, is nearly all of what certainly separates us from the animals, and these are the same components that are reliably and obviously unintelligible or even perverse when viewed in reverse. Hermetic magic urges one to avoid disturbing and to passively appreciate the natural balance of a given thing or circumstance, and to actively understand and participate in the ways one can achieve balance; such as by entering ritual trance states often, and by harmonizing  with their world, on whatever scale might be applicable in a particular situational instance. In a saturated and imbalanced  environment such as the modern one, the practice of hermetic magic can be tricky, as even though the logical conclusions of hermetic magic seemingly speak for themselves, social norms, media depictions of social norms, and the stewards of the inter-generational development of these norms are so drenched in mythical duality and reliant upon ego perversion that balance simply cannot be outwardly or inwardly forced onto them in a harmonious way. The most effective way to practice any form of nonbinary hermetic magic is to practice it on an interpersonal and small intrapersonal scale. Very simply, you can only control yourself, your attitude and actions, and if you live a ritually balanced and harmonious life, the more likely someone else around you will observe and appreciate it. These small instances of shifts toward balance may not seem like much when observed next to the towering institution of social duality, but over the course of a single well balanced lifetime one can hope to at least chip away at the external imbalance through all the tiny paradigm shifts that they were able to perpetuate through maintaining their own inner balance. It warrants mentioning that hermetic magic can be practiced by itself, but also  in tandem with empress or paladin magic (if there is, there musn’t be). I am planning to do a deep dive into the specific history of western hermetics into the various mythical, religious, and even secular applications that have evolved from it, but for now I hope this explanation satisfies the criteria when it comes to comparing the practice of hermetic magic to those previously discussed gendered aspects of empress and paladin magic.  

 

To conclude, magic is the convoluted byproduct of ego, nature, and time. There are several avenues for practicing individual lifestyle magic, regardless of how it may be abstractly or improperly represented in media, and despite how we may be oversaturated with said depictions in the contemporary world.  Magic is highly accessible to the individual if they understand where to begin, and archetypal, conceptual learning is, in my view, the best place to start learning. Understanding the separate components of magical thinking and practice in relation to yourself can only be done when you have a general and holistic basis of what already exists. There are three main classes of existence, three classes of magic: female, male, and nonbinary. They all have their strengths and weaknesses, specialties and pitfalls, and studying these conceptual classes is the easiest way to understand yourself in relation to them, and therefore will aid immensely in not only deciding your own personal playstyle, but will make you more effective in the long run as a magician or magical thinker regardless of age, race, culture, gender, et cetera.  

SMALL SCALE MALTHUSIANISM: AN EXPLORATION OF GENDERED POPULATION TRENDS, ALSO WHAT YOU CAN POSSIBLY DO ABOUT IT

DEFINITION: MALTHUSIAN (adjective): of or relating to Malthus or to his theory that population tends to increase at a faster rate than its means of subsistence and that unless it is checked by moral restraint or disaster (such as disease, famine, war, etc.) widespread poverty and degradation inevitably result.

 

My personal favorite example of Malthusian theory is not a real world example, but rather is literary, and humorous, bordering on absurd. Shocker. This example comes from my favorite book of all time: The Wanting Seed by Anthony Burgess, who is marginally well known for other work, but most notably, A Clockwork Orange. I believe that on some level, A Clockwork Orange is a literary exploration into the concept of “small scale Malthusianism”, although I can never know for sure because Burgess had to go and die on me… or us I guess, and probably his family too but you know what I mean. In “The Wanting Seed”, Burgess tells a delightful tale of family betrayal and intrigue through the lens of a pair of English twin brothers. The narrative surrounding the brothers is secondary to the setting which also evolves. A dystopian and over populated England faces famine, and the entire government is essentially designed around population control and food distribution. Eventually, this model is revealed to be highly fascist… shocker… and crumbles upon itself, killing thousands of citizens in the process… War breaks out, so a new and improved model may replace the old one, which was over controlling and murderous, and would you believe it, even more thousands of people are killed in the process. After the war, however, is an era of peace, prosperity, safety, and freedom. Everything humans strive for, “abundance”, whatever that is, and  an environment that is safe for raising children. But through the novel’s events, which I won’t spoil for anyone, we see the population begin increasing, and the cycle begins to repeat itself. An environment that is safe for children means, ostensibly, more children. What do more children lead to? More and more and more little ones until suddenly there are tens of billions of people on the earth and some of them, most of them, are not receiving or are unable to receive the resources that are necessary to assume the same circumstantial environments for properly raising children or experiencing an “abundant” lifestyle. The Malthusian Dilemma. Too many people want too much stuff, they get the stuff, but that leads to too many babies, more than there is stuff for. So what’s the point? What’s the solution? And I know you must be wondering this, because it is overly apparent that these themed issues still affect us, to this day, no, to this second. DISCIPLINE. The answer is uniform discipline. Unquestionable, indisputable, uniform, perfectly balanced with room for entropic variables, discipline. There needs to be an all encompassing moral, social, and legal framework that transcends cultural, religious, and all other boundaries that is focused on the ethics of avoiding greed and irresponsible procreation. Which sounds pretty fucking terrible if you ask me. I’d definitely rather just do whatever I please based solely on personal responsibility, emotions, and whims. I cannot be alone in this sentiment. 

 

My main concern is that this sort of preventative framework does not exist on any collective or otherwise significant scale, and the few existing dogmas/doctrines that may lightly resemble or address Malthusian themes are considered unethical under the current and popular framework; Monotheistic Abrahamic religions, primarily Judiasm, Christianity, and Islam, as well as their respective schisms and other institutions that are based on Abrahamic principles. These institutions, generally speaking, do not appropriately address Malthusian concerns, and while the teachings of these religions do not discourage discipline, the overt and covert motives behind strict and arbitrary aspects of Abrahamic discipline were obviously not made with Malthusian relaities in mind. In fact,  abundance of childbirth within the system of marriage is highly encouraged and is generally revered as a reward or blessing, and the opposite a curse or pox, at least within Abrahamic practices. From an astrological perspective, this makes a bit of sense, as far as the solar doctrines go, but it does nothing to address the problems that will inevitably arise from the success of the model, almost as if the model was designed to fail in this manner. I do not discount an honest lack of foresight, as it truly is disheartening to imagine that someone or some entity would design this system to fail, but personally, I do not think that is exactly the case. My first theory is that Malthusian concerns stem from the natural ebb and flow of order and chaos, which unfailingly prevails socially as well as environmentally, in its way, despite the constant and exponential efforts of dominion preservationists. My second theory is more of an extension of the first theory than a separate theory in itself. The patriarchal nature of a proper society as we understand it today, that being one which is generally ruled by dominion preservationist agendas is likely to, based on the overwhelming historical evidence, suppress females and general female influence (including astrological influence… Please ursa minor… with me here… not funny? sorry.), inevitably leading to sublimative manifestation of female agendas, which is arguably more powerful and influential than direct male domain agendas. I have explored these themes a bit in my Tarot and occult imagery research. The ages alternate between male and female centrism no other reason except that is their positioning and human designation. Ancient, pre neolithic humans likely had an easier time balancing female and male energies in an effective manner, most likely due to the egalitarian nature of early society, but the emergence and later reliance on civilized society did away with the earth mother as a primary deity (despite her undeniable omnipresence directly under their feet), and put male solar dominion preservation agendas in the driver’s seat indefinitely. This forced female manifestation agendas to take on a totally sublimative role, which initially takes the form of temples run by priestesses promoting uniform ethics and worship practices and then later the over zealous and highly pedagogical Piscean religions. Either way, you can recognize a female sublimation agenda by the necessary existence of bureaucracy and  sycophants within the system, whether taking the form of pedagogical structures, glaring disparities in information access, or other such details or “design flaws”. As the moon reflects the sun, female sublimation efforts improve overtime to conceptually reflect the advances made by their male counterparts; efforts in the fields of dominion preservation. For the last rotation (Aries being the previous male age, and the current age, Pisces, being female), the sublimative manifestations of the female agendas have revealed themselves through the still popular, highly influential, and overall energetically oppressive monotheistic religions, primarily Christianity and Islam (as Judiasm is remnant of the age of Aries, and is NOT a Piscean religion, and therefore inherently opposes Piscean sublimation agendas. This is my theory as to why Judaism is both widely and violently scapegoated and oppressed, and  why, despite its monotheistic dogmas, it is more inclined to encourage free thinking on a personal level within the doctrine and practice, at least when compared to the relative stricture of the later Abrahamic religions. This bit is, obviously, a simplification that is planned to be addressed in separate writings). Environmental Malthusian concerns shift with the passage of time and the overall chemical makeup of the earth. Social Malthusian concerns shift with the cycle of female/male zodiacal procession of the Earth’s astrology. The Malthusian concerns are always there, and all the same challenges are continually present, but the existence and growth of deeply seated, dual, gendered energetic assignments within human social and political structure, religion, and overall human mythos, pathos, and ethos directly affect the nature and themes of our collective creative and destructive social cycles, in most if not all aspects of life. Malthusian concerns also develop on the same exponential scale as the strength of dual energies as they are reflected astrologically. This means that the peaks of population and innovation as well as the troughs of  degradation and disparity become larger/taller with each solar procession, similar to a snowball rolling down a snowy hillside, picking up speed and increasing in size as it goes. The “resources” referred to in the initial definition are not particularly limited to physical resources such as water or food. The capacity possessed by a given administration to properly govern and control large populations is just as important to prolonging the society as its access to food, water, and energy. Basically, if your government is intentionally  built on balanced, flexible, and inclusive policy, it is more likely to withstand entropy, and is more likely to successfully adopt and popularize balanced population control which will allow it to remain relatively stable until faced with the reality of cataclysm. However, intense preoccupation with gendered duality and ego injection within the human collective paired with the entropic nature of the universe all but guarantees that balance will be difficult to achieve, and that any demonstrations of balance are likely coincidental rather than intentional. Without long term and disciplined efforts to maintain stability, populations will always inevitably outgrow the available resources, whether conceptual or physical, and the institutions charged with providing or rationing these resources will be overturned or otherwise destabilized. 

 

S- Don’t you see what you’ve done? Empires have fallen! 

M- That’s what empires DO! 

 

So what have I done to circumvent the aching anxiety that I feel when I consider the theory of Malthus? The overall lack of sustainable social infrastructure, solar flares, the Cascadian megaquake and tsunamis, the Yellowstone super volcano… these don’t scare me. Thin the herd, that’s what I say. We could die any day. As much as humans have done to project their egos onto nature, and as undeniably effective as it has been thus far in advancing the human race to the apex, the trends of earth’s movement have the final say in all of it. Malthus’ theory is social, but the reality of population control goes far beyond scholarly analysis, political bodies, social or religious norms. One day the invisible singularity will be reached, and bada bing, bada boom. Just like that, the earth will crumble beneath us and cataclysm will prevail; the beautiful and inescapable reset button. The age of Aquarius approaches, and regardless of the catchy disco track and general indigo child sing-songy, LSD feel-goodery, the procession of the equinoxes calls for violent upheaval; belligerent change. People grow tired of the arbitrary nature of organized religion and existing structures daily. Weak minds cling to dogma and fail to let go, while greater, more courageous minds, let go and embrace the passivity of entropic voidness. The earth grows tired of human ego and its deadly dominion preservation at the same rate. The earth, a sycophantic female energy body, may not always rise up against tyranny on a whim, but time and chaos side with her; they are bound to do so. Piscean reality is a strange thing… even though humans are supposedly the smartest animals on earth, we are no longer wired to troubleshoot, and the instinct now is to grasp harder to preordained dogma rather than allowing personal experience to drive behavior. Piscean age individuals, when compared to individuals of other ages…myself included… are utterly enamored by their own ego avatars, which thrive parasitically under the current model. Decaying. People, believing that what they think truly makes a difference in a social sense, cling to their assigned extremes or otherwise embrace hedonism or apathy, violent social entropy follows, and then new, hopefully improved structures take their place. That’s how things tend to go, or how they’ve gone up until now. Every highly, retrospectively inevitable ice age, (or bout of climate change), whether caused by volcano ash or dust or lack of greenhouse gasses, the consequences on Earth usually result in a necessary change in atmospheric conditions and therefore a step up on the ladder of life; ice age, cyanobacteria. Ice age, predatory organisms to balance cyanobacteria. Ice age, the emergence of land plants, and so on and so forth most likely ad nauseam. One cycle needs to end before another can begin. It’s the nature of life and of the universe. Introducing intelligent life into the mix makes the continuation of these life sustaining cycles a more convoluted process, especially as the lifeforms grow in intellect and ability. No matter what is thrown at humanity, it is likely we will never be totally wiped out. Small hidden factions underground will make sure the genome isn’t lost completely. Will we prevail? Most likely not, that job belongs to the Earth. Will we survive? Perhaps. Just perhaps. That’s the best we can hope for, and an awful lot more than we deserve. Here’s the thing. No individual could ever successfully circumvent Malthusian trends and the inevitable threats that result. It’s more of a team sport, socially, and more of an inevitable existential reality on an environmental level. So what can you do? What can anyone do? 

 

Focus on what you can control. 

 

On a personal level, on an ego level, Malthusianism applies. It is my belief that a given ego will continually grow and project, up to a deadly fault, unless properly maintained and enriched. The collective ego of humanity (at least in the western hemisphere), has allowed this reality to come to pass, so, honestly, what can you do? Focus on what you can control. It is the responsibility of an individual to constantly check their ego, constructively or otherwise, and in the event these measures fail or are not done, entropy will inevitably step in to do the job. Entropy will impede on all of us at some point or other, and to some more often and potently than others. The higher they fly the harder they fall. We don’t have control over plate tectonics and, even though you drive a Prius and recycle, we don’t have control over global climate change. But you can make sure you’re not contributing to the mess of ego dissonance, for no reason other than it is all you may do to contribute to the cycles that have permitted you to come into being at all, rather than deny them and cause dissonance. You can honestly be yourself, balanced by the nature of life and its wiley cycles, rather than assigning your life and soul to arbitrary labels that someone else designed. If every individual lived as though their hearts and minds were free to interact purely with the social scape and landscape without the existence of ego dissonance, without the influence of another’s ego, or of agendas reflecting the ego of a powerful group or entity, it would theoretically and over time, solve Malthusian social concerns. Those who were meant to die will die and those who are meant to live will live; no one would have the right or ability to significantly control these variables except a given individual and the environment they live in, and perhaps the influence of trusted relatives or loved ones. My concern though, is how could anyone return to revere natural cycles when the world has changed in so many ways? A man cannot live without food, water, and energy, but gone are the days where one could independently harvest these things and maintain any modern standard of life; third parties, governments, companies and corporations control access to resources and opportunities alike. How can we allow live and let live, or live and let die principles to cleanse the human ethos and pathos when oppressive monotheism, war economics, and senseless greed have swarmed and blinded the top of and trickled down to poison the entire race? Every age, and each turn of the wheel is experimental. Life evolves fractally. This roundabout has been particularly interesting, incredibly educational, but the cycles must continue and must improve. We have attempted the model of occult pedagogical society, and we have seen the consequences: crippling reliance on illusion and polarity, as well as violent disparities in wealth, knowledge, and power which grow exponentially like cancer. The reality is that this particular experiment, this particular branch of human social strategy has shown its readiness to fail, and it has resulted to failure because the existing potential to improve has been recognized, and has, consciously or unconsciously, set its course toward a singularity that will allow the necessary purges and changes to take place. Apply fractal evolution to a personal level. Choose a goal. Do something, anything, in pursuit of that goal. Fail or fall short of the desired result. Take some time to understand how you can do it better. Do it again with the changed variable in place. Fail again. Understand again. 

 

Do. Fail. Understand. 

 

On an individual level, the more you intentionally repeat this cycle, the more your awareness increases. The more aware you are, the better your failure will become, and at some points it may even feel like victory. Completion and victory are fleeting moments to be savored, but the cycles of life do not end because you have achieved something and become comfortable. If you are highly aware, you can effectively field chaos when it approaches. If you are familiar with the cyclical nature of consequences and entropy because you have previously subjected yourself to small scale instances of these, you can recognize and adapt to larger scale instances when they inevitably arise. If these principles could be applied on a mass scale, it would alleviate the human race of its social Malthusian concerns. Perhaps, if this were possible in practice and not a complete pipe dream, future generations may one day experience something resembling utopian ideals. 

 

That is of course, until cataclysm comes knocking on the door, disguised as an unassuming and reliably well meaning presence.

 

Esoteric Feminism and The Phallic Fallacy, or The Problem With Ego Observation: Part 2 Venusian Bodies

In pursuit of my Trojan War analysis, I thought it would be helpful to continue the trend of analyzing occult imagery through Tarot cards to explore the energetic frequencies and patterns regarding certain planets and their corresponding zodiac signs. These themes play a huge role in the cosmological breakdown of the Trojan War, especially for conceptually linking world mythology and in a broader context, world religion, to any actual cosmological events or patterns. Today we are starting with an old favorite and personal bias: Venus. There are several cards in the Major Arcana that are energetically linked to Venus, and coincidentally, they also all line up, energetically, with the zodiac signs of Libra and Taurus. On a personal level, I also find these to be energetically linked inherently to two words in the English language: hierophant and sycophant. Though I truly couldn’t tell you which is which, and I’m sure it switches based on which Libra and Taurus you’re involved with and at what time and place, however I will be using the terms to widen the scope of the energetic meaning of each card. Hierophantic and sycophantic, in my opinion, are more accurate to describe the inherently more elegant sides to Venusian polarity, though these terms echo or are otherwise parallel to the “male” and “female” energetic assignments applied to earth signs and dwellers. Venusian energies are highly adaptive to their environment(s), rather than strictly imposing, so that even when an imposition is occurring (as these types of things are simply unavoidable), the argument is often and easily made that the imposition, regardless of its reach, inconvenience, (or worse), is for the good of all, or for a religious task; achieving a sort of piety or unification with a higher power. Regardless of any potential negative consequences that you may be subject to, you can rest easy knowing that, overall,  the world around you is being benefited. People of all kinds like to hear they are doing something for the good of their collective, or that their sacrifices contribute to spiritual growth and transcendence, even if the effects are abstract. This means that despite the indirect and empathetic tactics, all Venusian bodies have tremendous potential to achieve significant control, personal dominion, and remain relatively revered or well liked because of the “larger purpose” that their actions encompass. Of course we’d all like to assume that these individuals would not abuse these abilities, and some don’t and would faster offer their services to well intentioned endeavors. However, others would just as quickly manipulate others or lie about their intentions for an upper hand. This is a grand generalization of Venusians, but given their overall pliable nature in the practice of hypothetical exercise, I’m sure they’d agree with my assessment, at the very least to indulge the humble author. Other signs… well… not so much, but I’ve no desire to get ahead of myself. 

 

The Hierophant

(Hierophantic)/Taurus 

 

Self explanatory, I know. The Hierophant is the male mystic, priest king, or the (pen)ultimate culmination of phallic occultism. His purpose is to guard those in his charge from spiritual evils and explain to worthy individuals the sacred secrets and mysteries surrounding arcane esoterica; this esoteric knowledge is the only authority the Hierophant is subject to, save potential pedagogical structures. His throne is surrounded by individuals who appear to have changed their appearance (they sport the strange traditional haircuts of monks), and have dressed in the symbols of abundant dominion preservation, all because they are eager to learn. The Hierophant’s ornate crown and robes suggest that he is well rewarded and esteemed for his insight, and the keys lying at his feet represent the unseen connections between man and the divine. The imagery here echoes that of the High Priestess, as she too sits between two imposing pillars, wears an ornate headdress representing her connection to the divinity of the age, as well as the partial source of hidden knowledge (the crescent moon) at her feet. Notice how he is wearing a blue robe underneath his red and cross adorned one… almost as if he is attempting to hide the source of his inspiration. However, in the case of the Hierophant, the imagery is inextricably linked to dominion preservation within the theocratic empires of the ages of  Aries and Pisces, as well as the presence of sycophants at his feet. Hmm… based on my last analysis, I do not believe there is any coincidence surrounding this shift: at some point in our history, males, ostensibly and socially, became the superior spiritual beings, while women were phased out until fully relegated to domestic and social designations, as well as subject to indirect intuitive sublimation as the only means of recourse. It is not my place to explain why this shift took place, however I think we can all agree that it definitely has, generally speaking. The Hierophant fairly obviously depicts this shift, also very nicely ties in the distinctly Venusian and Taurean energies this card encompasses. The Hierophant has significant control and power; he is the keeper of important and life changing secrets, and quite literally they keys as well! Because of this, he is almost always guaranteed great strategic skill and a consistent audience. While this audience is made up mostly of sycophantic clients, dependents, followers, or students, he often also has the ears of other and possibly even more powerful forces or individuals, such as royals or other Hierophants higher up in the pedagogy. Although the Hierophant archetype most likely rose up out of necessity, to solve some problem in a then innovative fashion, it retrospectively creates an egregious power imbalance between men and other men, not to mention furthering the imbalance of power and empathy between men and women, as well as women and god, so to speak. I believe Hierophant has persisted over the centuries simply due to the Venusian nature of the archetype. His work is unquestionably good… isn’t it? He wishes to control the flow of information for a number of disclosed or undisclosed reasons… perhaps to gain influence, for the power granted by the position, or to gain an audience of sycophants who will rely on him in all matters for some devilish means or devious purpose. Perhaps he’s building suspense for a shock to come, or maybe he truly is called to perform this work for the joy of it or for a truly higher power. I’d imagine the motivations behind each individual Hierophant vary widely based on countless factors. To tie it up nicely with Venusian themes, I maintain that the Hierophant generally represents the more dominant or controlling side of Venusian polarity. Like our male/sun archetypes on earth, Venusian Hierophant/sun archetypes serve a similar purpose. They keep the keys to secrets regarding the success or failure of dominion preservation on all levels necessary to continuously achieve the goal. Male/solar dominion focuses on controlling the secrets necessary to bend nature to the whims of earth dwellers, while Hierophantic/solar dominion focuses on appealing to the spiritual nature of a body to sustain dominion. While there is nothing inherently wrong with this, and it could truly be to the benefit of some if not many individuals and groups, it has historically been the job of Mercurial, Venusian, and lunar energies to maintain the reflected knowledge of the sun from their respective vantage points. Now here comes the movement of human beings with incredible displays of dominion preservation, utilizing the sacred secrets of the universe with relative ease and abandon, simply to increase planetary reliance and deep acceptance of phallic symbolism because… um I guess it’s kind of funny or something. It’s easy and simple to just say the “patriarchy” did this to suppress the overall intuitive abilities of women… I get that argument, and I get why people are attracted to it…but let’s be real for a sec my guys. In my opinion, this is a defeatist view… I believe female/lunar energies, astrological and otherwise, first created and continue to maintain the “patriarchy”, indirectly and over centuries, with the goal being to channel the brunt of male/solar dominion preservation instincts away from the more violent, strictly phallic and experimental models of maintaining large civilizations, empires, and later kingdoms and countries. It’s a bold claim, but I’m standing by it. 

 

Justice

(Sycophantic)/Libra

The imagery of this card is incredibly poignant to me as a Libra… the imagery of the High Priestess, The Hierophant, and the Magician culminate to depict familiar self regulatory structures and symbols that have manifested as a consequence of male/solar energetic dominion and resulting female intuitive sublimation, all leaning to convey justice. Despite the powerful symbols of this card pointing to themes of grand, blind justice, the yellow background is once again an obvious reminder of the sheer influence and power that behind the scenes, dominion preserving male/solar forces have over any proceedings that take place. However, personally, I see the red facade of the robes and tapestry echoing the throne of The Empress, only more prominent, signifying a full embrace of female power through sublimation. Despite this, his heavy crown and the forged sword and scale in his hands also demonstrate the overall reliance justice has on Hierophantic and phallic institutions that are what have allowed him to occupy this position of relative influence and power in the first place… or is it honestly checks and balances? Recall what I said about the necessary existence of sycophants, and the sublimation of female energies? Of course you do. The rise of the Hierophant in place of a general female spiritual authority kicked off a very important chain of events in human history: the meticulous and indirect development of fair judgment practices. While the story of Democracy development, proper, is not dated until after the Trojan War (that is with the Athenian matricide trial of Orestes in Aeschylus’ Eumenides, or fairly late in the age of Aries), justice as a concept has existed in various forms and levels of bias since the beginning of human history. Most people are familiar with “Hammurabi’s Law Code”, a series of stone edicts erected around Babylon depicting instances of “lex talionis” (or eye for an eye justice), historically being used in Babylonian courts, essentially establishing that as a precedent for courts all around Sumeria. Before this, justice took a more natural state, manifesting either as natural “karmic” consequences (drought, crop failure, disease, etc), or in the form of energetic beasts or primordial beings of vengeance. In the case of Asia Minor and Greece, these are the “furies”, who alway unquestionably punish individuals for “crimes against nature”, mostly including murders within families or familial cannibalism. However, these are earlier instances of justice which spring from and are controlled by the mother goddess or earth mother, and they are free from the bulk of influence surrounding civilization or male/solar ego injection. When the trend of theocratic monarchies and empires hit its strange first apex through the ages of Aries and Pisces, and the Hierophants and Priest Kings became absolute authorities on all matters, it stood the public needed an outlet for appeals. Justice was this outlet; networks of courts and appointed judges who are loyal to the powers that be… whatever those are. Seeking justice in this highly formal way, even if questionably regulated and still subject to the absolute authority of the Hierophants, was a way for powerless members of the general public to feel like they had some kind of control. If they were wronged deeply enough, there was an apparent path to appeals and possible reconciliation. However, the all judges and court officials (aside from “magick”,  primordial, and karmic forces), were almost always sycophantic and under the direct influence of Hierophants. If you had a direct audience with an emperor or hierophant who acted as your judge, then you were subject to their will and ruling, and if not, you could easily expect appointed career judges to side with the monarchs and Hierophants, and hand you a similar if not identical ruling to what you would received had your audience been direct. Either way, despite any complex judicial structures that may be in place, deciding influence always flows up to those males with wealth and spiritual station… monarchs and Hierophants; this naturally creates an imbalance, and imbalances generally cause upsetment over time. At least one class of people, the judges, could utilize their abilities as sycophants to appeal to as many parties as possible on multiple levels in hopes of the maximum possible benefit or return, both for themselves and anyone else who may feel powerless or has something otherwise appealing to offer. Sometimes these are altruistic doings with a real focus on collective good at their core, but other times they are selfish and manipulative abuses of ability and power. This is what is depicted in the Justice card, and also why it is linked with the sign of Libra… arguably the most talented sycophants of the zodiac (aside from Virgo). From the very first courts, to the well organized (if still highly flawed) contemporary western justice system, we see the trend of Hierophants reaching for greater dominion and talented sycophants (and other times less talented… I’m looking at you Machiavelli…), indirectly trying to subvert those attempts. I maintain that the development of extreme bureaucracy within political systems (in any time and on any level), exists/existed as a form of female spiritual sublimation, in that it indirectly keeps trigger happy monarchs from making rash choices without having time to reconsider or be otherwise influenced. Blind justice and assurance of personal liberties, as obvious concepts, are relatively new on the scene, resulting from centuries of cyclical, large scale power imbalance and upsetment. The overall rigidity and female spiritual suppression tactics of the older Hierophantic institutions instigated the sublimation of female energies into the establishment of future systems. To be clear: This is my theory regarding the correlations between occult imagery and macro-historical events. I am not saying that any of this is historically or academically proven. I want to make it as clear as possible that these claims are nothing more than my educated guesses. Once again to tie into the main theme: I maintain that justice, and a collective expectation for just outcomes, resulted over time from sublimated frustrations regarding the collective female energies, or the energies present in the Empress. The formal, ongoing establishment of justice or judiciary systems is a slow, sycophantic, and indirect process, rather than an immediate shift. This is by design, and is essentially the oldest and longest lasting form of feminism in an anti-patriarchal respect. I also believe the advent of monotheism, mostly Piscean Christianity, as seen in the High Priestess, is historically and heavily tied into the themes of collective justice and sycophantic subversion, as there is no greater model for Hierophantic pedagogy and bureaucracy than the adolescent Catholic church exercising in Europe the early- middle stages of the age of Pisces. However, I admit I may be reaching a bit with that last statement… it’s a hunch, and hunches can be proven wrong. Just as a quick recap, the energetic/astrological considerations to remember going forward: Venus/Hierophant/Solar=Earth/Male/Solar and Venus/Sycophant/Lunar=Earth/Female/Lunar. By this measure, the fading away of symbols depicting the moon toward more dominion centric imagery within tarot is almost certainly by design to reflect the astrological implications of the imagery in relation to human historical trends, especially those regarding lunar sublimation. My opinion is that this is because this is the Hierophant, Justice, and the Empress are the tarot or otherwise occult iterations of Venusian polarity in terms of either our collective astrology or something larger. This means that just as we earth dwellers see the moon reflect the light of the sun night after night, both Venusian energies and Venus itself also have a unique way of observing and interacting with the sky and ultimate source of power, a.k.a. the sun, and this placement and vantage point was suitable for the development of a race of Hierophants and sycophants, so to speak. Hierophants once again, being the keepers of the “keys” for a number of reasons, and sycophants being the ones who appeal to them in the hope of accessing new knowledge and opportunities for a number of purposes. It is my personal understanding that it is this sort of third party planetary influence that is respect for the effects of both individual and macro astrology, and to an extent, mythology. The success of widely enforced and accepted moral principles provided via Christian dogma, to me at least, represents continual success of the empathetic Venusian influence and the Empress centric female/lunar sublimation strategy depicted throughout occult imagery, and historically. Additionally, the monotheistic God of Christianity, in a way, represents the ultimate judge, and popularizing widespread fear of such an awesomely powerful judge is highly effective in both subversion of rash monarchs and Hierophants, but also in soliciting relative obedience from most if not all other subjects.  

The Empress

(Sycophantic)/ Venusian Polarity

The Empress is, simply speaking, the ultimate culmination of both Venusian energies and female energies. The symbol below her throne is indicative of this card’s connection to female and Venusian energy.  In the scope of Taurus age political and religious structure, the Empress character is represented by a woman who is more of a pawn than a person, and her existence is a reflection of this. Almost every aspect of her life is directly controlled by the Hierophantic pedagogy that makes up her world. She lounges on her throne, and is adorned with the symbols and luxuries befitting her station, but her power and religious significance have been taken away from her, except for symbolic elements. This card represents the successful dominion preservation tactics of Venusian Hierophants in controlling both women and the world around them. However, this card is not all invisible bondage, as the imagery reflects incredible material and domestic abundance. The imagery suggests at what could be possible in the event careful balance of the Venusian poles is maintained. Though the color yellow is once again an imposing presence in the image, representing the Empress’ overall reliance on dominion preservationists for her existence and ostensible influence, the land is flush with grain and timber, and the water flows freely. This is, ultimately, due to the Empress. The forces of dominion preservation are obsessed with that mission only. The victims and trials of a single individual or of peasants are not important in comparison to this goal. However, despite the suppression of the Empress, she is still an earth dwelling female and well versed, whether consciously or not, in the art of intuitive sublimation. By utilizing and appealing to the energies of the moon for sycophantic ability, the Earth mother for superior intuitive and sublimative ability, and Venus for seductive ability, (also, occasionally, Mercury for social ability), the Empress is able to appeal appropriately in order to subvert many of the Hierophants or Emperors rash impulses long enough to negotiate and get him to consider other perspectives and variables. This is why the Empress’ gown is covered in the symbols of abundance. Even if she may not be able to deliver peace and safety to her people, she can use her abilities to make sure the realm remains well fed and materially sound. Intuitive sublimation is the ultimate weapon in the esoteric feminism arsenal, as it is highly effective and its solutions are rarely caught onto by male energies because of the strategic and “long game” methods invoked. The Empress embodies all female sublimation, as well as sublimative ability and achievement, on all levels from individual, astrological and cosmological.

 

Wheel of Fortune

(Hierophantic)

The Wheel of Fortune, in my summation, is representative of the height of sycophantic achievement. The card itself is generally not considered related to Venusian energies, however, I personally identify this card with the trend of sycophantic achievement through the successful subversion of Hierophantic dominion preservation obstacles. As usual, the background color of the card takes on great significance; you’ll notice how it is blue on The Wheel of Fortune. Blue is the overwhelming color on the Moon and High Priestess cards, so at least from the clues in the imagery, this can be interpreted as lunar dominion finally coming into its own in a literal round-about way. As the card depicts, taking all available opportunities for learning, despite the personal shame or guilt you might encounter, and all potential perspectives and methods into account is the only way to achieve meaningful success as either a Hierophant or sycophant. Studying the world, (and the world of the past) with a truly earnest desire to understand, and adapting without delay to the unforgivingly chaotic nature of the world. The Wheel of Fortune is concentrated and manufactured chaos; representing a spin in luck or circumstance; a chance to be tossed about, and land in a new perspective, position, or orientation. Action occupies the present moment when movement of the wheel deems it necessary, to observe and record the changes, but the rest of the time is meant for data collection and careful environmental analysis, as well as the general pursuit of more truth… The Wheel of Fortune depicts this. It is a card bustling with important symbols that tie prehistoric (pre Taurean) humans to historic (post Taurean) humans in an occult sense. Symbols of a monotheistic nature adorn the turning wheel, as do biblically significant characters who have to do with the evils of curiosity and the danger of unchecked women: the devil or satan, the serpent from the garden, and the imposing symbolic presence of the great and powerful Egypt (another way to look at this is the presence of the Sphinx representing the stages and cycles of life… yes like the riddle, or like Hecate and maiden/mother/crone witchcraft). Once again, the High Priestess becomes relevant… The tie into monotheism and female spiritual sublimation under the duress of male dominion preservation is apparent even at the relatively high energetic levels surrounding the Wheel of Fortune. More than this, these four creatures appear on clouds of smoke, in a pseudo-angelic way, studying and reading their way around the wheel, outside of its consequences, not affected by the movement: a man, woman or angel who strongly resembles either the Empress or the judge of the Justice card, a winged bull, a winged lion, and a bird, each fully yellow and engulfed or otherwise absorbed in the male/Solar dominion preservation system, and saving it from or incorporating it into the movement of the monotheistic wheel. I take this imagery to mean the forces of lunar sublimation have successfully managed to distract the dominion preservationists. They have simultaneously managed to subvert the wheel to suit the ends of female spiritual sublimation through the successful invocation of monotheism, mainly Piscean Christianity, while avoiding the widespread, public consequences of their “helpful impositions”, and remaining as near to the source of power as ever. The Hierophants have, essentially, become the sycophants, because they are totally occupied with analyzing this complex Wheel of Fortune, mostly encompassing Judaeo-Christian symbolism. However, they believe they are studying the great Hierophantic secrets, but really they are studying and appeasing the all powerful, great Judaeo- Christian god, and his biblical doctrine. In my opinion, the bull and the lion represent the older generations of Hierophantic/Solar and Male/Solar energies having become infatuated with the sycophantically designed  Wheel Of Fortune and all its inner workings… essentially they are sufficiently distracted. The angelic figure, and the bird which I believe to be an eagle, I believe represent the slow approaching age of Aquarius. These two easily represent both air signs and the establishment if contemporary democracy, are not as engrossed in the same sycophantic research as their predecessors, the bull and lion; they appear to daydreaming or distracted from the wheel, representing the challenges regarding the usefulness of Christianity as a long term control mechanism, and introducing or hinting at an equally sycophantic and somehow more extreme obsession with the fields of logical philosophy, science, and mathematics instead of violent blind faith in predesigned religious dogma. The importance of sycophantic development lies in the background of this card rather than on the wheel itself. The wheel simply represents the distractions in play, mostly the monotheistic secrets and doctrines, to keep the current phallic authorities busy and occupied while lunar energies continue doing what they do best: reflecting the brilliance of the sun with untold grace. The Wheel of Fortune imagery suggests that lunar energies have or will achieve these goals without any interference from male/Solar agendas. While the male/solar and hierophantic/solar energies are consumed with solving and analyzing the logical problems and fallacies caused by the turning of the great wheel, the lunar energies are hard at work scheming… spinning the wheel, and crafting plans for  novel distractions for the new air centric age…that is when they aren’t tending to male authorities to keep up the brilliant facade. 

 

The World

(Sycophantic) 

Once again, a poignant reflection of sycophantic achievement, with a blue colored background and the male energies appearing on clouds,  surrounding a female centric display. In the Wheel, it’s the mysteries of Judaeo-Christian logical fallacies, but on the World, they float around a nude, ethereal woman resembling the Empress, floating, draped in purple cloth, wielding phallic symbols in both hands. She is protected from all outside influence by the surrounding wreath. The lion and bull stare intently outward, almost breaking the fourth wall, possibly trying to warn about the true, undisclosed power of female spiritual sublimation. However the judge from the Justice card and the eagle are obviously smitten and quite taken with the display. Female energies directly dominating the phallic creation secret(s) is, on the surface, a recipe for true peace and obvious justice for all… right? The few previous ages have been aimed at controlling female spiritual ability in favor of male/solar dominion preservation, and it only made them more powerful. Could the next age encompass a purposeful egalitarian spiritual element despite the male energy of the sign? Perhaps hermetics or genderlessness will play a significant role in the future because the differences between the two have finally been openly reconciled and the balance reinstated… female and lunar spiritual superiority is the necessary control variable that keeps this balance preserved. Many times, male energies, whether Hierophants, grand scale monarchs or magicians, or whatever else have you, have attempted to upset the balance which relies on female earth and lunar energies being in a superior position, while meaningful success in these types of pursuits has occurred, the female centric energies (both on macro and individual levels) will almost always have to option achieve the upper hand through the use of sycophantic, seductive, and sublimated strategies. Basically, earth dwelling females at least, always have the option to grab and hold men by their genitals… for some reason it’s nearly always the most important thing in the world to them and they would go to incredible ends to argue and symbolize its importance and need for respect. Women are, simply, not subject to this vulnerability. Of course this is a generalization, but to me at least, the occult imagery stands up to scrutiny. And imagery hints that the truth is that women do not have the need to forcibly control the dominion preservation compulsions of male/solar energies, because, as the earthly spiritual authorities, they have figured out an easier way to deal with this nuisance they can’t live without. First came appealing to them, almost to an embarrassing extent- establishing a presence through a combination (earth)familial, (lunar) seductive, and (Venusian)sycophantic influence… and then capitalizing on said influence by sufficiently distracting them, with the great Rubik’s cube of Christianity. However, this is not a permanent solution, and the turning Wheel will make the development of a new more unified and egalitarian distraction necessary.

 

Esoteric Feminism and The Phallic Fallacy, or The Problem with Ego Observation: Part 1 Occult Imagery

 Recently someone challenged my hypothesis regarding female spiritual superiority and I found myself unable to coherently address it. This was for a variety of reasons, but chief among them is that my understanding of female spiritual superiority has always been inherent and innate, and I have never taken the time to explore this concept with the aim of presenting it to others as an argument. 

 

Firstly, I am going to present some symbols that I have always found to be very useful at conveying the sentiments I wish to explain regarding this topic. As with any esoteric exercise or experience, willing suspension of disbelief is required to properly complete the thought exercise. By presenting these symbols, I am not attributing concrete responsibility or consequence regarding their accuracy in proving the ideas I will be presenting, I am simply presenting them because they have always, coincidentally, confirmed my intuitive biases regarding this topic, (and this goes for many people as well throughout time and the world). I only ask the reader to observe these symbols and consider what is being presented. I am going to be presenting some tarot imagery that directly reflects the spiritual duality and historical leadership roles of both men and women. I will not be discussing the cards in the order that they occur in the Major Arcana, but rather I will be analyzing them as the concepts peak in historical relevance… sort of chronologically, but not exactly. 

 

  • Tarot Symbolism for prehistoric Religion (predating the age of Taurus): 

fig. 1

 

The Sun

Representing the height of living achievement; something that is only possible with the light of the sun and electromagnetic nuances of the earth’s curious position. A child flying a flag on the back of a horse, all in front of a thriving sunflower garden, smiling and wearing a crown adorned with a red feather that nearly reflects the flag in the child’s hand. When you consider the sheer age of this imagery, timelessly triumphant happiness and contentedness is undoubtedly being depicted. However, the sun itself seems to be glaring down at the child, indifferent at the very most to this most charming scene. The sun is bigger and hotter than anything that we could ever achieve, powering our world with fervent regularity, though it’d surely destroy just as soon if we weren’t being protected by location and electromagnetism. When early humans finally made the scene, it only stands to reason that the sun was their first god. It was bright and constant, melted the snow off mountainsides, gave rise to everything that sustained life, including respite from the cold, and provided advanced life with the ability to empirically experience… the ability to see. Everything that could be achieved in nature is ultimately due to the sun. Within esoteric communities, the sun has always been inherently connected to masculine energies, and it certainly measures up… male energies control, aim to create, and mostly, rely on tangible, visible evidence to support their conclusions. While this is certainly a generalization on an individual level, it is an accurate assessment of occult imagery surrounding male energies. For our conceptual intents and purposes, the sun and the male side of duality are one in the same. 

fig 2

 

The Moon

On a personal note… I don’t trust the moon. I know how that makes me sound, and personally I don’t care. To me, the fear is well founded, as I fear revelation. In the scope of occult imagery, the moon represents hidden knowledge, secrets, and the pitfalls that might accompany anything of a clandestine or concealed nature. While the sun is the obvious and flamboyant creation force, representing the ultimate male energy, the moon is the covert side of creation which embodies the ultimate female energy. Astronomically speaking, the moon sits in a peculiar spot, absolutely proportional to the sun, allowing for the existence of eclipse phenomena. The moon acts as a nightlight to the earth’s hemispheres, poignantly reflecting a gentler iteration of the sun’s light onto the earth while the sun is away, saving them from the paranoia accompanying total darkness. Invoke caution regardless, because as this imagery illustrates, partial understanding could potentially even be more dangerous than none at all. Nothing holds more sway than secrets; nothing catalyzes both order and chaos quite like the threat of exposure. This imagery depicts various creatures, elements, manifestations of intelligence springing from the earth, drawn inexplicably to the moon; being affected with no apparent cause. A wolf and a dog howling with abandon, the lobster and the water he floats in, a stone monument erected below her exact position, and the mountain path all going in or at least acknowledging the direction of the moon. Even the face of the moon depicts a stoic female likeness, humbly fulfilling her purpose, raining down scant specks of understanding and revealing hidden variables while the sun looks away. The sun commands respect, but the moon commands awe, indulgence, and wonder. This circadian duality is the basis for the first and purest form of human religion. Early humans worshipped these two forces alone, as everything in sight could be obviously attributed to the sun, and anything else could be attributed to mystical knowledge of an esoteric nature, inherently represented by the moon proper, as well as the early occult imagery surrounding it. 

 

  • Tarot Symbolism for Religion in the Age of Taurus

fig. 3

 

The Magician

Observe the pure showmanship. Beautiful metal works and an old club atop an ornate table. A man in fine robes holding a phallic wand of sorts gestures to the beautiful flowers that grow around him and seemingly at his command. The directions of his arms signify an “as above so below” sentiment; as the sun powers the earth so may it always be curated to suit the needs of man. The infinity symbol over his head signifies the unavoidable reality of this relationship having been deciphered by humankind; it stands to announce that we’ll be eating our tails in this manner until the day we’ve all expired. The transformation of male ego energies that define the age are beautifully depicted by the imagery of the Magician. As the age of Taurus historically marks the beginning of human ego injection into religion, the Magician depicts a dazzling show of man dominating his environment with the help of powerful symbols represented by the items sitting on the surface in front of him. These items are also the props necessary for correctly performing contemporary Laveyan satanic (or otherwise satanic) rituals, which are also generally centered on the topic or goal of ego indulgence, though strictly Piscean. The solid and unforgiving yellow background of this card further ties it into the solar, male creation energies. The Magician illustrates man’s first steps successfully imposing on the earth, sustained by the sun’s unfaltering regularity. He attributes his success to the symbols presented in the illustration, and he seemingly brags “Look at what I’ve created, concentrated beauty, all for our convenience. I alone understand how to sustain this, so we all can enjoy the fruits of meaningful manifestation.” He is, essentially, taking credit for the work of the sun; infusing his ego with the most powerful creation source. Outside of simple ego injection, these types of sentiments are ultimately responsible for the trends that define the transformative phases of Taurus age religion. The age of Taurus consists of the latter part of the Neolithic period and the beginning of the Bronze age. Historically, these periods are categorized by unprecedented frequency of human innovation aimed at controlling the environment and establishing permanent, settled civilizations powered by food surplus. Although it may not seem so impressive to us in the modern day, the energetically male powers, kings, for lack of a better word, who established such impressive dominion over the natural world would be seen as nothing less than magick by infant populations in these areas who were fully used to being subject to the whims of nature with no respite, (whether real or imagined). While in hindsight, the precedents regarding classism and power imbalance established in these early times makes them seem like a mistake in the long run, and certainly has led to incredible devastation just as much as it has led to innovation, but at this time, I’m sure it felt like they were being offered a safety resource, or perhaps insurance, in the ongoing battle against natural entropy, and this in turn established some addictive semblance of collective control which had never before existed.

fig.4

The High Priestess 

Possibly the most symbol heavy card in the entire deck (and that’s really saying something), there is certainly a lot to unpack regarding the High Priestess imagery. A few things that we notice off the bat automatically tie this card into a female centric energetic meaning; her gown flowing like water signifying female passivity (or perhaps a deluge?), a tapestry behind her depicting the abundance of plant based nature, the crescent moon at her feet. The moon at her feet… and on her head? An Isis headdress which bears a strong resemblance to the horns of a bull, signifying some kind of occult connection, however arbitrary, to the age of Taurus or Taurean energies. In the historic age of Taurus, the model of civilization in all facets (political, economical, and religious), became inextricably linked to supporting both palaces and temples. Palaces of course were the residences of local kings (and later emperors), and building and maintaining these structures (not to mention the heavy task of supporting inter-regional “diplomacy”), were full time jobs that required the employment of countless slaves, farmers, artisans, and craftsmen. This is an extension of the phenomena explained by the imagery present on the Magician. Temples however, were a bit different. They were sacred structures which housed “city gods”, and required the same complex construction and upkeep as a palace, but were left in the charge of single women, the priestesses, rather than male monarchs. Just as the moon humbly reflects the rays of the sun, the priestesses humbly reflected the esoteric responsibilities of the ruling classes, effectively putting them in a class all their own. Just as the creatures and elements of the Moon are inextricably drawn to the sparse and enlightening glow of the moon, the remaining imagery surrounding the High Priestesses points to one very important revelation: monotheism. She holds a Torah scroll, her dress features a cross, and the letters on the pillars beside her stand for “Boaz” and “Jachin” (“beginning” and “mercy”, respectively), and these also allude to the Temple of Solomon. Just as the Magician (sun/male) has infused his ego with the creation power of the sun, the High Priestess (moon/female) is intrinsically required to reflect this change, and also infuse her ego with the esoteric knowledge encompassed by the moon. The monotheistic imagery so prevalent on this card stands to support my conclusion that female priestess figures were on par with patriarchal leaders, and either intentionally or unintentionally seduced them politically and therefore their respective civilizations in the direction that eventually allowed for the formation and later triumph of the monotheistic religions (first Judaism and later Christianity). The High Priestess, like the Moon, is largely inexplicable. These images convey highly esoteric and moon centric themes, and this coupled with the monotheistic symbolism  leads me to believe that this card is a direct reflection of sun/moon or male/female duality in the earlier stages of human ego development. Since these can be readily applied to age of Taurus, it is safe to say that the role of the Magician is to promote innovation and outwardly control his environment, while the role of the High Priestess is to support him in this role by silently and humbly revealing the answers to mysteries or other esoteric solutions that could prevent or circumvent the world’s natural state of chaos and therefore extend the Magician’s dominion. Additionally, when viewed in this light, the occult imagery is almost a direct reflection of the historical establishment of the “Palace-Temple” socioeconomic structure that we see emerge during the early Bronze Age. The imagery also perhaps serves as a silent warning to the larger and hidden consequences this model will later have, as the symbols hint at Aries age events where monotheism is challenged severely; mainly the destruction of the Temple of Solomon and the martyring of Christ, both of which are tragic for several reasons and ultimately lead to the rejection of the Aries model in favor for the Piscean one. However, as this is a moon and female centric card, the full meaning cannot be ascertained by just viewing, there is something to be intrinsically felt that will eventually permit full understanding. 

 

  • Tarot Symbolism for Religion in the Age of Aries

fig. 5 

 

The Emperor

They gave this one away with the Rams heads present on the arms of the Emperor’s throne. That, and the age of Aries is considered to be and historically is, the age of the Empire. After the Early Dynastic period in the Near East, empires of incredible size and unparalleled trade, cultural diaspora began to take shape, but also included new trends of horrible warfare and conflict. Human kind sees itself caught in a cycle of unsurpassed greatness and complete, humiliating destruction. It’s no wonder this Emperor looks so tired… or annoyed at the very least, or that the sky is red with blood or fire; either way it’s no good. The gold orb in his hand represents the realms or lands within his control, the ankh on the end of his staff (more phallic symbolism being introduced, which ostensibly means an ego increase within religious trends), represents life, and this man is obviously burdened by the responsibilities of his excessive dominion. One man, holding so much power, so much death and life directly in his hands, and finding it less and less endearing as time winds on around him. The novelty of civilization is wearing off, and the imperfections of the beta empire model are becoming glaringly apparent. However, he shoulders the responsibility regardless, working day in and day out to maintain order over and for his realm; his armor even signals that he has or is willing to risk his life defending the realm in battle. A single man, the Emperor, has assumed the role of God, though this symbolism was in bad taste at the time, so his religious responsibilities were essentially passed on to a cabinet of advisors (represented by the Hierophant), in order to keep up the pretenses of worship to more traditional nature or cosmological Gods which most laymen still feared just as before. Only the ruling classes were allowed the privilege of extreme ego development at this point, however the consequences of their growing pains echo and ripple all throughout the classes. In ages prior, a leader’s right to rule was subject to natural occurrences, such as catastrophic weather or plagues, but somewhere along the line, divine right became fully about bloodlines and abandoned the natural component altogether, establishing man (or the idea of men) as a force all their own, completely separate from an uninformed nature based existence. In return for this, the powers of entropy introduced an overall necessity for warfare that lasts today. Nomadic peoples invading settlements, resource draining border skirmishes, and provincial rebellions became unavoidable occurrences that were all just part of the job description. Hellenism would, ironically, be the saving grace of the empire structure and sustain the entire western world straight into Christianity and the age of Pisces. But until then, our Aries age Emperor must deal with the drudgery of his inherent pseudo-deification, and he surely doesn’t look happy about it. Perhaps he senses the horrors of or is still dealing with the aftershocks of the late Bronze Age Collapse. Perhaps he feels his predecessors are to blame, or perhaps he feels the blame falls on women who have always inexplicably understood and warned against the actions (and retrospective mistakes) he takes which only strengthen dissonance preventing a smooth rule. Either way, he is weary of what he cannot perceive and will go to the ends of the earth to maintain control, however cruel, convoluted, or counter intuitive those tactics may be in practice. 

fig. 6

 

The Empress

Like all good fruit, the balance of life is in the ripe and ruin. Once again, the female energy of the age necessarily reflects the agenda of their male counterparts.The river flowing behind her signifies the remnants of her innate passivity, but otherwise she is completely surrounded by products of the Emperors dominion.  While the Emperor holds life and death in the balance, his wife, the Empress is concerned with material affairs… not necessarily just gowns and treasures, but the welfare of her realm. The symbols on this card point to food surplus, the grains growing in the foreground and the fruits printed on her gown. She is concerned about keeping the realm safe and fed. She has likely been a pawn of diplomacy her whole life, traded to another land for one commodity or another, and she must choose her allegiances carefully; which is most important? The realm contractually acquired or the one which she is from? The crown of many stars on her head signifies that despite the burdens of her position, she maintains the elusive female energies of her forebears, and she allows this empathetic intuition to guide her choices and therefore focuses on supporting the masses, aiming for longevity, as opposed to the arbitrary life or death choices faced by the Emperor. The age of Aries was hallmarked by arrogant and personal conflicts, as well as slavery, loss, chaos and destruction as much as it was about expansion, innovative warfare and even enlightened political experimentation, and the Empress had no control over these, and benefited severely from them despite the intuitive dissonances that came as a result to the events of the age, despite the subconscious guilt. All she could do to sublimate was focus on domestic matters, and this became the primary female archetype lasting until modern day. The female symbol sits underneath her throne, seemingly directing her nurturing energy into the earth and subsequently to the people of her realm, as she attempts to appear as humble as one can while covered in fine fabrics and jewels that others in rags had toiled away to fashion for her. The yellow background signals the ever present imposition of male energies upon not only the earth, but upon the female collective, once again especially within the ruling classes. A constant reminder that women exist to reflect the light of the sun, and without the light of the sun to guide us, we would be utterly useless. Females were all around successfully conditioned to think this way because otherwise they would be able to access factions of their energy that denied the wants or egos of the already highly agitated Emperor. 

 

You’re probably asking yourself what any of this is meant to prove in regards to female spiritual superiority. 

 

Occult symbolism heavily supports the conclusion that female energies interfere with the male energies agenda of establishing dominion. The relationship works in nature, it works cosmologically despite the extreme coincidences regarding the placement of the moon. The moon will always reflect the light of the sun when the sun is unable to make an appearance.  The problem comes from extensive ego infusion, as these reflections are no longer strictly cosmological phenomena but highly personal experiences affecting large numbers of people. The sheer intensity of our collective prehistoric days of  worshiping the sun and the moon without the need for context has made a lasting impression on all subsequent gender norms and behaviors both conscious and subconscious. The historical facts and the parallel occult imagery overwhelmingly points to females being innately closer and connected to the source of esoteric knowledge since time immemorial. Moreover, the attempts made by men to stifle the intuitive experience of women in the name of dominion has only served to fuel an underground anger. Why would they do it if there were nothing to fear from women? Why silence someone unless they are privy to something compromising? I assume that since women are so close to the source of all esoteric knowledge, going far beyond what male energies can understand, this serves as reason. Anything else would be illogical, and that runs directly against the innate logical pedagogy behind male energies. I wish there were formulas to prove the spiritual superiority of females, but alas, “proof” is not in the nature of spiritual dogma.  At the end of the day, I’m just guessing too. 

 

I believe in the Trojan War more than I believe in anything else. 

 

The power of a relatively insignificant and clever child such as Pandora to cause the world to fall around her. All by telling a story and pitting an older generation against itself… two relative snaps of the fingers. Destruction of the known world always comes at the hands of a chaotic and undisciplined brat, and only when the timing is just right. All the ego evolution, phallic control and solar dominion in existence cannot evade chaos or the ones who bring it. Perhaps one day chaos and the ones who herald its arrival will meet their match. Seems rather unlikely though, given the trends. If dominion is not destroyed by itself, it will be destroyed by chaos. If nothing else, women have children who are malleable to her influence; children who can be convinced to murder their fathers to refresh the realms. The way I see it, chaos always wins.  Later (once the full near eastern Aries age background is published) I’ll continue the esoteric feminism series, with a full cosmological breakdown of the Trojan War to further the argument of esoteric feminism.

Early Mesopotamian Religion (Ages of Gemini and Taurus)

Proposed Mesopotamian Religion in the Ages of Gemini and Taurus

 

Hopefully you read or at least skimmed my Mesopotamian History for Dummies quick timeline, because it provides the bones of this religious analysis. It is important to keep an open mind going forward here, because a large part of my religious analysis will rest on the earth’s proposed astrology. A few caveats to keep in mind is that back in these ancient days, time  was measured in a way we would find unrecognizable today. The years I’ve assigned to the ages are hypothetical and rely too heavily on the contemporary calendar to be considered truly accurate, however this is the general working model for occultists, (although consolidated sources are pretty hard to find). Additionally, despite any existing biases you might have on personal or pop astrology, I urge you to find it in your heart to agree, at the very least, that the night sky is indisputably full of constellations which, visually, serve as the backdrop to the movements of the celestial bodies in our solar system.  Regardless of what effects might or might not manifest from their formations, we can all at least agree that the sky is set up in such a way. My hypothesis rests heavily on astrological considerations, and it is necessary for the reader to willingly suspend their disbelief in order to holistically consider my claims, even though they are not backed up by science. In fact, no traditional religion or subsequent analysis can be based on science, as it goes against the faith based essence of spiritual practice. Just because it’s not 100% proven does not mean there is nothing to learn or take away. One more thing to keep in mind… this is a macro historical generalization… thousands of years of Mesopotamian religious history in one simple post hardly does the subject due justice. Trust that over time, as my body of research becomes more in depth that more smaller scale details will be analyzed, but for now I am focusing on establishing a decent background for these deeper dives to eventually take place. Today’s analysis is strictly Mesopotamian in nature, so I don’t want any flack  about “what about the Egyptians and the Elamites?:((” because I promise we’re going to get there at some point. Now let’s jump right in. 

 

Let’s quickly set the some approximate background parameters to consider: 

 

7500-5000 BCE is the age of Gemini.

In personal astrology, individuals with Gemini sun placements or otherwise heavy Gemini placements on their chart share many of the same personality traits and energetic characteristics, and this, according to my theory, is the same for the collective people of earth while it occupies the constellation of Gemini. Gemini energies are generally frenetic and mercurial. Gemini dominant individuals are simultaneously fanciful and grounded- they have lofty goals and powerful imaginations, and they are often able to achieve these goals because their work ethic is, generally, beyond reproach and well above average. They are highly curious, motivated, and social individuals who love dialogue and openly seek new knowledge and experiences through dialogue, travel, interpersonal relationships, as well as a healthy relationship with failure. At the end of the day, a Gemini wants something unsustainable; the best of both worlds (keep this in mind). While events, triumphs, and traditions of this time period are nearly impossible to know exactly, Mesopotamia scholars agree that the first semi-sedentary settlements begin popping up in and around the Levant during this general time frame. Occult sources also generally place the teachings of “fallen angels” or Nephilim near and around the age of Gemini, and establish the importance of the area in and around what is now considered the city of Jericho (which is in the Levant), as playing a key role in Nephilim lore. My stance is that occult teachings surrounding Nephilim phenomena play a large role in prehistoric religion, as well as the success of these semi-sedentary, and eventually the permanent Taurean settlements, and we will be touching on this in a bit. 

 

5000-2500 BCE is the age of Taurus.  

In personal astrology, Taurus sun or Taurus dominant individuals embody certain key energies and traits. In pop psychology, the stereotype is that Taurus individuals are lazy and gluttonous, and while some Tauruean individuals definitely are, and they all certainly covet and enjoy their downtime, this is a dumb downed stereotype that does not do the sign proper justice. Taurus energies have more to do with a stubborn adherence to personal principles and an industrious attitude. This sign recognizes the value of hard work above most anything else. They recognize this for the benefits it brings the individual and collective, as well as understanding that hard work is the key to enjoying life; working provides the opportunity and resources for pleasurable downtime. Taureans thrive on the balance between work and play, and they have an innate ability to recognize opportunities to acquire the things they desire and to effectively capitalize. Historically speaking, we see some important things happen during this time frame. During the age of Taurus, the Neolithic revolution is in full swing, so to speak, and there is much evidence to confirm that humans in the age of Taurus start perfecting the settlement model that was laid out in the previous age. During the age of Taurus we see the “semi-“ prefix fall from the sedentary label, as humans begin truly recognizing the miscellaneous benefits that accompany food surplus, concentrated population, and the establishment of permanent domestication: specialized labors, government structure, and safety in numbers. Innovations such as the plow, the wheel and canals are achieved by settled humans in this age. Despite the engineering feats made, they also become privy to the downsides of civilized life, which are arguably worse, depending on who you ask, most notably disease, famine, and increased reliance on weather patterns. They were no longer going to the food sources, they were bringing food sources to their settlements, and attempting to force nature to support their settlement. The nomadic hunter-gatherer model did not disappear overnight, and outside of the Levant, most cultures continued utilizing that model, which put vulnerable sedentary settlements at constant risk of siege. The development of personal duality is the most important distinction when considering religious analysis: The age of Taurus sees an unprecedented increase in and reliance on domestication, human dominion, skills and intellect; all of which are not necessarily negative, but pronounce the human ego in a way that was not previously given. Previously, duality was fixed, unchanging, and only existed in nature: the sun and the moon, man and woman, land and sea, etc., but after the Neolithic period, and into the early Bronze age, we see a new kind of unstable and evolutionary pseudo-duality emerge: man vs nature, civilization vs chaos; we see humanity schism from a nature based existence and assert ourselves as truly separate from nature. Before the age of Taurus, humanity, like most species, was completely subject to the earth. Fire, shamanism, and rudimentary tools and weapons allowed pre-Taurean humans certain privileges, (literal “enlightenment” over other animals), but survival still depended on respect and fear for the cycles of the rest of nature. Constructing permanent settlements with irrigated farms and herding infrastructure put humans in a dual position. Personally, I recognize a trend: the more humans exert control over their environment, risks of chaos increase, and so does the human desire to control these risks. It’s a hamster wheel. Think about it. Wow, said a Tauruean human, what if we gathered all the food and stored it a central location, and then just used it when we need it? Then we can focus on making hot metal into different shapes, carving rocks into statues of our wives, and hauling big stones into circles. It seems like a foolproof plan… until the grainery catches fire or is sacked by nomads and the whole settlement goes hungry. No longer were we purely working with nature to sustain small nomadic family and cultural groups, running from lions and shooting antelopes. We began the tail chasing cycle of being permanently at odds with chaos, and we became desperate to exert control over it, and this trend has only increased over time. 

 

Okay let’s break this down a bit. In the age of Gemini, we see humans in the Levant begin to experiment (whether purposely or accidentally), with the domestication of plants and animals. Dog, man’s best friend, is thought to be domesticated during this age, and this symbiosis has become a permanent symbol and institution within humanity. Most people still relied heavily on hunting and gathering, but food surpluses began taking shape resulting in semi-sedentary settlements. I contest that Gemini age religion mainly consisted of duality based elemental gods which represented the basic elements of humanity: Sun and moon gods, ocean or river gods, rain and weather gods, as well as a healthy respect and fear (that could have easily resulted on something akin to deification), for other necessary survival elements such as grains or plants, animals which were hunted as well as predatory animals that were revered, and last but definitely not least, fire. Enter the notorious Nephilim… Described in the Book of Enoch and other various occult sources as fallen angels or giants that possessed a higher level of intelligence than any human or group of humans, it goes that they were sent by higher beings  to supervise us and keep us in check, but they ended up doing just the opposite. Their most notable transgression was mating with human women and teaching them “forbidden secrets of the universe” (most notably weaponry, cosmetics and astrology, and also many other things that directly contribute to anything having to do with cosmological  occultism, esoterica, “magick”, and other things which acted as a catalyst for human ego development), which it can reasonably be assumed that these secret teachings were passed down to their mixed offspring. It is also believed in occult circles that Nephilim phenomena is concentrated or otherwise significantly linked to the near east, especially in the Levant or Canaan. While the timeline (and existence) of the Nephilim is unstable and changes from source to source, I believe that whatever occurrences are described in the various Nephilim sources are responsible for establishing more occult aspects of early religion, as well as putting human women at the forefront of spirituality, supporting the scholarly belief that many ancient cultures were egalitarian if not overtly matriarchal. While Nephilim knowledge could easily predate the age of Gemini, the model certainly carries and plays into the age. Nature and cosmology made up the bulk of Gemini age religion- the necessary components of survival were worshipped with fervor and regularity, while rudimentary and female centric shamanic mysticism (supposedly aided by Nephilim teachings), played a more ancillary role in the overall religious infrastructure. Most groups or settlements likely had a priestess whose job was to undertake the more esoteric responsibilities of a community’s religious structure. Seeing as how humanity was inseparable from nature, working in tandem with nature at this time rather than against it, the shaman or priestesses work was likely primarily based in the application of early glamour magick, herbal medicine and astrological/ego development. Religion in the age of Gemini was a a period of respite, where human spirituality balanced with ease between nature fear and occultism… an ultimately unsustainable “best of both worlds” set up. Gemini age priestesses and shamans did not perform rituals to win wars or control the weather as would be the jobs of later mystics; it was closer to “take this tincture for this ailment”, “paint your face this way for protection on the hunt”, and “the stars say you should wait to conceive a child.” No one needed the services of a priestess outright, however her medicines prolonged and ended lives, her skin paints could transform a likeness, and her warnings and predictions held considerable weight. In an era where nearly everything was controlled by nature, totally apathetic to human influences, a priestess figure whose influence was recognized by nature must have been something incredibly powerful… it stands to reason that people generally decided it best to keep these mystics around. Imagine how powerful early magick might seem to a nomad in the age of Gemini… even the simplest symbols likely struck a chord deep in their hearts, and I’m sure the general consensus was that it was better and easier to have a priestess among you, helping and guiding you, than it was to have her ousted and against you. Again, there is no surefire way to confirm prehistoric religious beliefs, or to give its evolution any definitive timeline but there is a general consensus on the elemental and cosmology based duality religion structure that was not only deeply ingrained into but also inseparable from human existence. This belief system was aided by the early magicks of shamans and priestesses who were likely descended from or instructed by  Nephilim/human hybrids. It is my belief that this model was developed and prevalent for the ages preceding Gemini, but that Gemini is the last age that retains it without extreme ego perversion. 

 

Taurus. Changes. Everything. I used to be in the camp of the age of Aries being the greatest turning point, but I have recently proved myself wrong… Aires is simply an exponential continuation of the ego development of human kind. See in the age of Taurus, we see one incredible shift on many levels… Neolithic age to bronze age, semi sedentary settlements to full on complex cultures with class and political structures, and most importantly the first injections of human ego into religious traditions. The first human physical likenesses are found by archaeologists, in the form of stone statues, date back to the age of Taurus. If you read my timeline, you’ll recall my insistence on the importance of these likenesses in relation to ego development. Think about it. While there is no evidence to support this claim (just like how there’s no evidence to support any religious claim), consider the monumental consequences a thing like this might have, what it would mean to a collective or an individual person. This is a time before portraits, cameras, and even mirrors, however crude, were few and far between. Most people went their entire lives never seeing their own bodies or faces (with the exception of an occasional reflection on a still body of water). Their lives, and even their likenesses, were held at the mercy of nature entirely; vanity was virtually nonexistent, and ego indulgence beyond survival was superfluous. Generally, the medicines and glamour magicks of a Gemini age shaman were not employed for vanity or longevity… it was all symbolic, and meant to deepen human connections and relations with the natural occurrences which controlled life. But these statues, and future  statues, stand to change that (no pun intended). Likenesses of oneself, of loved ones were likely used to represent them in a magick ritual, but this distinction was not as obvious to the people of the age of Taurus. These likenesses were actually believed to hold the essence of whoever was depicted, and served as an effective proxy for any esoteric magicks and for general daily prayer. No longer did prayer simply consist of appeals to nature deities, now there was the option of introducing yourself into the equation; to consider personal wishes beyond those of direct survival. Also likenesses of the Gods begin appearing in similar fashions in early pottery fragments, and no surprise, they take the form of humans. Albeit at this point they are mostly human animal hybrids, which beautifully demonstrates how the human ego rearing its head in a once fully nature based religion was a process that did not just happen in the blink of an eye.  Although we all take it for granted today, (seriously there is a two camera device in  all of our pockets today with one camera specifically designed to take photos of the face),  the introduction of the human likeness in tangible art, especially in the depictions of the Gods, is a huge turning point in human history. This is where we begin see the introduction of the aforementioned “pseudo-dualities” of man vs nature and civilization vs chaos, and these make up the bulk of Taurus and Aries age religion. I call these pseudo-dualities because they are manufactured. Natural duality is ever present on earth and inevitable, things like the sun and moon, or men and women, are unavoidable distinctions which power life. However man is inherently a product of nature, so pitting the two as opposites creates a paradox. A similar problem occurs with civilization vs chaos. Entropy is the natural state of the universe, so when a force resists or attempts to exert control over it,  in any capacity, chaos will always eventually  prevail, essentially making any or all efforts at dominion largely, for lack of a better word, futile, though humans in a given time and place tend to view their contributions as absolute. The age of Taurus is when the human ego supersedes and separates from the earth, and from there, it acts like a ball rolling down a snowy hill. We only see it get bigger and more dangerous over time, and we also see the trend of mysticism becoming intertwined with power positions. Gods are no longer “of earth”, they are localized  to established settlements, while priestesses and shamans are put into a class all their own which is equal if not greater than that of community leaders and eventually kings. In an attempt to preserve order and prevent chaos, we see temple-palace political and economic structures begin to form towards the end of the age. In the latter half of the age, we see the complex  politics and regional diplomacy of the Early Dynastic emerge. The city state cultures of Uruk, Ubaid and Halaf (among other,  smaller cultures), invoked the first kings and royals who in turn invoked the cringe inducing “divine right” concept into the mix. Surprise, surprise, this is nothing more than another (successful) ego reach, as kings are nothing more than the already established role of “community alpha male”, except now the position comes with even more pronounced responsibilities. A few pious and well liked men were deemed worthy by their peers, and they were granted positions of power. The system started out simply enough- the king represented the collective group to the Gods, and the logic was that the king (alongside the priestess of the city temple, although her position was rarely if ever up for debate), were responsible for keeping chaotic natural forces at bay, and on agenda. If this happened, the kings rule was supported, and if not, new leadership was necessary. For example, if a king ruled  for 10 years without major incident then it was assumed that the Gods were pleased with his rule, but if famine or disease fell upon a people, this served as proof that the king no longer had the support of the Gods and needed to be done away with and replaced. Obviously, most people can see the problems with this model, mostly that it is incredibly arbitrary, and is just a very convoluted, round-about way of life being ultimately controlled by natural forces.  Once again, chaos will always prevail, and using this model, the king will always fall out of favor, mostly because he’s just a guy, no matter how many animals he bleeds dry… One day he will die or fall out of favor. These early kingships are another great demonstration of how our religious developments was a long process, fraught with growing pains and tough lessons. Despite the new and improved ways humanity was finding to exercise dominion over their environment, their understanding of nature and the nature Gods remained the same for many years, up until the movement of Hellenistic philosophy at the end of the age of Aries. It is easy to make generalizations when retrospectively analyzing something as broad as human religion, but at the time and place of these early civilizations, they still took natural events incredibly personally, which their political structures reflect. Kings were the best they could do at the time, and if nature controlled everything else in Taurean life, it stands to reason that the stability of thier governments would also be subject to it, if indirectly. There were no meteorologists predicting storms or droughts, there were no vaccines, no bandaid with Neosporin, no Grey’s Anatomy, no airport on St. Helena; kings and priestesses were the only things with tangible “influence” over nature. Despite the enhanced magick practices and retrospectively obvious ego injections that define the age of Taurus, people still heavily feared nature, while somehow also feeling superior to it. This is the paradox I referenced before. It creates an icky intuitive dissonance that most of us still experience today, only much much louder. While individuals in and around the Uruk city state period still relied on intense religious practices between themselves and the nature Gods, putting the bulk of the protective responsibilities onto one “alpha male” seems like a natural jump, as it creates a representative and a scapegoat, leaving lay men to focus on farms and metallurgy and introducing more human order into the world. However, and this most likely an unseen consequence, this system also concentrated power in a way that is not only unnatural but also, as we’ll see, dangerous. Just like the ego development of a collective creates a nasty paradox, so does power imbalance. Now, men are above the earth, and certain men and above certain men. Although Corvee Labor was a popular system in ancient Mesopotamia, and it predates slavery, it is ultimately the same thing, and the consent aspect of the equation is eventually lost. Life becomes about supporting the monarchy, the temple, and supporting “diplomacy”, which is a decent strategy if the goal is to promote human imposition over entropy, but really just meant toiling away making rugs and jewelry for people with more power than you. Regardless of how one could label these occurrences they are simply ego developments, and the earliest known attempts of humans obsessively clinging to order despite the long term consequences. I have to say: I cannot and do not blame the peoples of these ages for their actions. Not one bit. They were, just as we are now, fumbling along, making discoveries, and trying to make things work for them. Doing what they thought was best at the time. If anyone was aware of the long term consequences, I’m sure they had a familiar thought: “Well I’ll be dead by then, so who cares?” They did not have the ability to judge and analyze their actions through hindsight as I do now. 

 

2500 BCE- 1 AD is the age of Aries. I’ll be  discussing the Mesopotamian developments of this in my next post. The fact that I have to give the age of Aries it’s own analysis when this post contains two, only speaks to the volume of events that take place here.

Intermittent

Okay I know I have been neglecting the blog, and I’d apologize if I actually believed I had any readers hahaha.

I have been completely absorbed in my latest research, and I have been trying to finish all of the extensive sources before putting anything down. While I work on completing this research, I thought I’d provide the prologue of my next post as a separate post. It contains some themes, ideas, and questions to begin considering before we take the deep dive, beginning with the age of Aries. In order to continue the “Entity X” series in the direction it needs to go in, I have to provide a comprehensive backdrop for the history of human spiritual evolution. In order to do this properly, I will be providing a series of historically sound explanations for the various astrological ages which encompass the evolution of human religion and politics. We will be examining the idea of “God” throughout the entirety of human civilization, not just the most well established biblical, Piscean, monotheistic interpretation. Here is the introduction for your consideration: 

 

On God

 

It’s a big bite, and I won’t pretend to have any actual facts on the matter. Right off the bat, I’d be super arrogant to pretend I have bona fide  facts regarding such an expansive topic…years of listening to southern baptist pastors ramble on and on has taught me one thing: blindly putting all of your faith into a pre-existing dogma, especially when you don’t fully understand it and only believe out of fear or obligation, is the most arrogant thing one can do. Seriously. Today my phone died while I was in my car, and since I didn’t have my Spotify to keep me company, I turned to the apocalyptically humorous world of FM. I scrolled across the Christian lecture channel, and settled, thinking it’d be good for a laugh; it usually is. I was not disappointed, as an obviously out-of-touch minister delivered an impassioned soap box on the dangers of MUSIC. Music, this guy is saying, is the devil incarnate, Satan’s favorite vehicle for delivering evil to the souls of mankind. He said “there are CDs your children can buy from Walmart that will summon demons to YOUR home. Men, husbands, as the priests of your household, it is your responsibility to be aware of this. Me for example, I will NOT allow headphones into my house. PERIOD. Won’t have ‘em. I will not let my family be instruments to the devil, I will not allow them to put themselves into those types of situations! That’s my responsibility because I am the father, and I alone represent God in my household.” It was about ten minutes of that absurd rhetoric (seriously, that’s real, that’s not an excerpt from an Albee script), and then the sermon concluded with a sales pitch for a movie called “The Dangers of Pop Paganism, like Wicca and Astrology”, which details 30 years of research on the “very real, physical dangers” of 21st century paganism, and how to avoid them, available on the radio stations website for a “donation” of $19.95. This anecdote is not necessarily relevant to the rest of the post, but I think it showcases religious arrogance if I’ve ever heard it. 

 

But it’s fine. I’m just making an observation. Am I a bit biased on this subject? Yes, of course, but I am holistic enough to freely admit it? Also yes. Far be it from me to judge anyone for anything, and there are perfectly good reasons behind the devastating trend of following pre-designed dogma. In some respects, there is something to be said for dogma. Science for example, is an excellent set of dogma (despite the disconnect between empirical ability and  burden of proof in the theoretical factions), because of the collective aspect and necessary participatory nature of the practice. There is a pre-existing, generally agreed upon body of scientific knowledge which dates back centuries, and although a good amount of it is mathematically sound and considered canon, new discoveries could be made at any point, and anyone could make them. Science is similar to religion, but it openly develops and changes  the more humans continue to indulge in their curiosity; in a way, science is the antithesis of religion, despite both of them being dogma based. Religion, specifically Piscean religion, is inherently different because it generally discourages curiosity, and encourages unquestioning faith in pre-existing dogma.There is no room for meaningful interpretation.  It actually goes further than simply discouraging or encouraging certain behaviors; compliance guarantees “life after death” with God and some more choice characters, and the vague benefits that accompany voluntary intellectual and spiritual martyrdom. If you are familiar with the biblical story of Lucifer, then you are familiar with the consequences of questioning dogma, or questioning God. It is pretty much the worst possible sin within Piscean doctrine; nothing is more egregious than rejecting the status quo in search of further understanding. When science was in its infancy, many gifted and influential minds were executed for the crime of  “heresy”, notably Bruno, Roger Bacon, and Cecco d’Ascoli. This further supports my antithesis theory, as the religion of science even has its own martyrs to parallel the christian ones. “Heresy”, even when purely logical and academic, was a capital offense, and it literally only consisted of denying the judo-christian God in favor of something else. Although they are both dogma based, science is a flexible doctrine that encourages intellectual curiosity and new revelations, while religion is impersonal and coercive, and it fully relies on its practitioners not questioning it. I think that bit appropriately sums up the difference between science and religion despite their structural similarities.

 

Ever wonder what was God before God? Who was God before the bible? What is the relationship between the God concept and culture or geography? Speaking strictly of the monotheistic Judaeo-christian God, why would this figure first demand we follow arbitrary behavioral guidelines, deny us the indulgence of any earthly or carnal pleasures, demand we supplement that with blood sacrifices with no explanation other than “or else”? (Ostensibly, the reason is to enforce uniform morality through empathetic torture to avoid repeating the horrors of the Late Bronze Age, or possibly to ensure they repeat, but we’ll discuss it later). I mean remember that nasty prank he played on Abraham when he was like “kill your son for me!” and then was like “haha just kidding?”.  All “metaphor” aside, that’s super fucked up. Further, why would God go ahead and violently kill his son, when no one asked him to, say he did it for the people, so we could stop with all the bull and goat murder, but then simultaneously blame it on us and demand absolute adoration and dominion over our souls, in exchange for what? “Graciousness”, “forgiveness”? Like bro… you’re the one who committed legit filicide, what are you forgiving me for? And we’re not going to get any of these rewards until after we die? That’s convenient, and familiar; I think Marshall Applewhite said something similar. Don’t even get me started on how creepy communion is; if forced symbolic cannibalism isn’t overt chaos magick and empathetic torture, I don’t know what is. Honestly, if you take this narrative out of context, it seems like an incredibly shady, unfair, and toxic deal; it’s R. Kelly level mental abuse, if not worse. Refusing to take the deal, while it’s no longer a hanging offense in most countries, will end you up in a torturous, fiery afterlife, and permanent separation from the son killing narcissist character otherwise known as God. At the start of the age of Pisces, western population centers were effectively tortured into complying with Christian dogma, until the effective Stockholm Syndrome eventually became collective and widespread. As the age of Pisces has progressed, and the closer we get to the age of Aquarius, the more the lines between science and religion become increasingly intertwined and blurred. But I’m getting ahead of myself, let’s get some background. 

 

Every astrological age is approximately 2,500 years long, and the age describes the astrological constellation that earth occupies, and this positioning inherently affects human civilization and the advances they make during a given age. Homo Sapiens has been on the earth for roughly 300,000 years, and that’s a lot of ages, a lot of full cycles around the zodiac. It’s a tedious bore to timeline through such a vast time frame, but it is actually a goal of mine that I have been working on for many months. In my current working model, the shift between Aries and Pisces is approximately dated with the birth of Christ or the rough change from 0 B.C.E. to 1 A.D. For our purposes today, examining just what the fuck a “God” even is or could be, we are just going to look at three ages: the current age, the age of Pisces, the previous age, the age of Aries, and the upcoming age, the age of Aquarius, and today we will focusing on the age of Aries. If you are familiar with astrology, then you’ll notice something off about the order of the ages. No, it is not a mistake, the ages are traveling backwards. The correct order is Aquarius, Pisces, Aries, but they are reversed for some reason or other. The retrograde is not something I just made up, it is the true nature of earth’s astrological course. I am going to provide a basic run-down of the specific energetic descriptions and cultural equivalents to each age as it relates to the given sign or constellation, followed by a detailed depiction of the western spiritual and religious norms and trends for each, supported by historical examples. Obviously, Aries and Pisces can be studied with the benefit of history, but Aqaurius will consist of my prediction of the age based on current data, and so far as religious trends go. Soon, I will be posting the comprehensive guide to the age of Aries, so be on the look out. If the research still taking too long however, I will also do a post on the Age of Taurus and the Neolithic Period, and the effects of food surplus on human life.