Night Sky Strategies Strategies
Issue IV, Libra 2008: Balance Disorder
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Law of the Excluded Middle The Decans
by Austin Coppock
by Austin Coppock
September 22nd-October 1st: Disorder by Austin Coppock……….6 October 2nd -11th: This Means War by Austin Coppock……………8 October 12th-22nd: Stress Homeostasis by Austin Coppock.…….10 Despicable Daring by Nick Civitello.………………………………11 Desire’s Psychopomp by Ryan Valentine and Austin Coppock……….16 About the Authors……………………………………………..21 Educational Resources…………………………………………23
Law of the Excluded Middle By Austin Coppock The Sign of Libra begins at one of 2 points of perfect harmony in the heavens, the Northern Hemisphereâ€™s autumnal equinox. This moment of balance inspires the scales to action, balancing and arranging what has so far only been itemized and pruned by the shears and calculator of Virgo. But as the scales swing into effect, the Sun is already in the process of hurtling farther away from the equinoctial point of balance that inspired them. The sign of Libra is reputed to bring things into balance. It inspires the desire for balance, but that is not the same thing as signifying balance. In fact, it signifies imbalance. There is something of the doctor in Libra, as the desire for balance dissects things along new lines, searching for the hidden disharmonies inside things. It must, if we are to correct them. Although Virgo and Libra are certainly different signs, each brings with it a desire to re-arrange affairs in order to meet a difficult ideal. For Virgo, that ideal is the perfection of a thing. For Libra, the ideal is the perfect arrangement of things in relationship to one another. While Virgo is concerned with crafting the perfect sculpture, Libra wonders exactly where in the museum it should be displayed. Libra is ruled, or takes its orders, from Venus, the planet most concerned with the relationship between things. Venus is the pivot point between the scales, and it is her balance that the scales are most concerned with achieving. This year, while the Sun shines through the lens of Libra, focusing its rays on careful arrangements, Venus will, for the most part, reside in the Sign of Scorpio, focusing on the dirty undercurrents of injustice on both an individual and collective level. This will bring the topic of balance to a darker and more difficult set of topics than usual. In addition to the difficulties of finding balance in the bowels of the Scorpion, Mercury will be retrograde in Libra for the majority of the month. This puts an additional spin on our topic, suggesting that not only will we be reassessing the various arrangements within our lives, we will also be reassessing the very concept of balance that weâ€™re using to weight this and that. Rethinking Balance We can balance all we like on a rocky outcropping, but we cannot move slowly and carefully to the next out cropping. Like the mountain goat, we must learn to leap between different stable points. This is the deeper balance between the appearance of balance and the appearance of imbalance. Likewise, Justice can also not be achieved with perfect equilibrium. Things must be shaken up in order to achieve a higher level of balance.
any people making wild leaps, losing all balance in hopes of finding a This month it will see many better one. Just as many will peer over the precipice and shake their heads. The political and economic situation of the United States has been so kind as to illustrate illus these mechanics for us. The upcoming presidential elections see two wildly different candi candidates, dates, each representing a different strategy.. Barack Obama represents a leap into the unknow unknown n along several dimensions, while John McCain, despite espite his campai campaign’s ’s best efforts to paint him as something else, still signifies a nostalgic return to a better time in America. A return to a memory of balance. The U.S. economy has tumbled in recent weeks, and a stupendously expensive aid plan has been proposed. A different arrangement is called for, but instead instead, the American taxpayers will be footing the bill to help the deeply imbalanced system find a temporary equilibrium. The rock upon which we stand is crumbling, an and d we can set up as many military bases as we like there, but it won’t stop the erosion process. The conscious universe is calling for us to leap, but into what we are not sure.
“ - Your “humble” editor once again walks you through the Sun’s time in Libra in 3 sections: “Disorder, This Means War, Stress Homeostasis Homeostasis.” - In order to understand Mars’ upcoming entry int into o Scorpio, Nick Civitello breaks down the essential characteristics using Noir film in “Despicable Despicable Daring Daring.” - Resident heretic Ryan Valentine and editor Austin Coppock explore the archetypal and occult resonance of Venus in Scorpio in “Desire Desire’s Psychopomp.”
The Decans By Austin Coppock
Night Sky Strategies presents each Zodiacal month in 3 separate sections. These divisions of each Sign are called decanates, from the Latin “deca”, meaning “10,” because each decanate is 10 degrees of the complete, 360 degree circle of the Zodiac. Since each Sign is a 30 degree wedge of the pie, there are 3 decanates in each Sign. The decanates are as old as Horoscopic Astrology itself, and can be found in the Greek and Latin writings that are the swaddling clothes of the newborn system in the first few centuries B.C. The decanates serve to divide each Sign into 3 further subdivisions, each with its own particular energy, represented by the Ruling Planet of the decanate. This further division sharpens the astrologer’s ability to assess the quality of time, as well as the character of those born to that time. The decans are also called the “Faces” and in them we see the character that this word suggests. The decans provide us with the Faces that the Signs of the Zodiac wear. But the history of the decanates goes beyond the passive assessment of qualities of time. As much or more than any other element of Astrology, the decanates, or decans are tied into a magical tradition that stretches back into antiquity, disappearing into the harsh sands of Egypt’s mystery traditions before Astrology as we know it was created by the Hellenistic Greeks. Since that time, the decans have been associated with deities, angels, and daemons. In Muslim Empire, Gayat Al Hakim detailed their usage in the Picatrix, The Goal of the Wise. In Renaissance Europe, Kabbalists assigned the angels and daemons of the Shemhamephoresh to the 36 decanates. Years later, the grandfather of the modern Western Occultism, Henry Cornelius Agrippa, described the decanic images, their qualities and uses, in his famous 3 Books of Occult Philosophy. The 36 decanic images also form the basis of the modern Tarot’s Minor Arcana. They are vertebrae in the backbone of the mystery traditions. For reasons unknown to me, modern astrologers have favored the Signs, but neglected the decanates. In some places, the decan system is used, but without the traditional planetary Rulers, which provide the essential character that each Face wears. The decanates are important tools and carry with them a rich legacy. For these reasons I have chosen to reintroduce the practical use of the decanates in this publication. Enjoy.
September 22nd-October 1st: Disorder Essence of the 1st Decan of Libra The first decan of Libra is represented in the Tarot by the 2 of Swords, often called “Peace.” On a conscious level, equilibrium reigns, but conflicts are brewing beneath the surface. The card gives ample clues that there is something brewing on an unconscious level. The moon hangs in the midst of the night sky, indicating the nightside of the mind. In addition, the central figure is blindfolded, also indicating that the emerging imbalance indicating by this card is invisible to the naked eye. September 22nd-Oct 1st, 2008: Disorder This year the Sun begins its travel through this decanate just the day before Mercury goes retrograde. Mercury’s retrograde motion serves to invert the standard dynamics associated with the card. And so instead of an as-yet unconscious set of questions slowly emerging into consciousness, this year the Equinox shone upon world wide panic in financial markets. We do not see the unconscious “Peace” of the standard 2 of Swords, but instead the “Disorder” of an out-in-the-open disaster, quite conscious. It is much more closely akin to what we might read from an inverted 2 of Swords.
It is interesting to note that later during the Sun’s journey through the Sign of Libra (Oct. 16th), Mercury will station Direct in this decan, presumably returning the collective to the state of unconscious “Peace” it now craves to reconnect with. It is quite likely that the proposed government bail-out of the U.S. economy will take place within a few days of Mercury’s resumption of normal movement .
Venus in Scorpio Which brings us to Venus, who leaves the high highminded confines of Libra on Thursda Thursday, the 25th, and enters Scorpio’s dark slip and slide. As Venus enters Scorpio, our relationships lationships and moods enter a problematic mental landscape. Venus in Scorpio brings us to our emotional hang--ups- old grudges and unresolved knots in the fabric of our relationships. It highlights the inequalities in our energy exchange with people in our lives, and can create an obsession with power dynamics that blows issues out of proportion. Even with these difficulties considered, Venus in Scorpio is honest, and ccan open a dark doorway to the transformation of stagnant relationships. For a more on Venus in Scorpio, check out Succubus, on page 24. Credit: Acrylick Alchemical http://www.myspace.com/acrylickalchemical
New Moon in Libra on September 29th Mercury’s turn for the retrograde and Venus’ transformation from Libran prima prima-donna donna to Scorpionic goth-girl girl beneath the end of September’s waning Moon are really just rearranging the scenery for the next act. The curtain call doesn’t occur until the New Moon in Libra on Monday, September 29th. The goddess of the black moon will take ake these influences into the depths of her womb, and slowly give birth to their manifestation over the next 2 weeks, with the peak of activity coming around October 15th’s Full Moon. This time activates and empowers the darker feminine archetypes. It will be an emotionally emot trying lunar cycle, lousy with miscommunications and hyper hyper-awareness awareness of power dynamics. Nonetheless, the arousal of these dynamics gives us a chance to do meaningful work with them.
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October 2ndt-11th: This Means War Essential Nature of the Second Decanate of Libra
The second decanate of Libra is represented in the Tarot by what may be the most infamous card within the minor arcana, the 3 of Swords. Often called “Sorrow,” this grim omen displays a heart pierced with 3 swords. If this wasn’t enough, rain ours down on the impaled heart. It’s hard to find the silver lining on these clouds (Unless, of course, you invert the colors on it.) The 3 of Swords is ruled by Saturn, and it represents the limits of the social contract. This theme extends from the romantic and interpersonal to the universal issue of governance. Here, we see what lies outside the boundary of what we can agree on. This decan/card, under the worst circumstances, can indicate betrayal, and even under standard circumstances often indicates the experience of betrayal. Which is, thankfully, not quite the same. Nonetheless, it is a node of energy that brings the ties of trust up for review, and goes on to snip a few.
Oct. 2nd-12th, 2008: This Means War Early in the Sun’s travels through this decanate, Mars moves from his sedate station in Libra to his underground bunker in, Scorpio. Mars gains tremendous power in Scorpio, and infuses the season with a ruthless, power-conscious edge. When Mars is running strong in the skies, ties that have somehow endured past their allotted time are cut and burned without remorse.
The movement of Mars into Scorpio will actually see a sigh of relief emerge from more martial types, as they will be infused with a charge of vital energy. Which will be refreshing after Mars’ Mars stay in limp wristed Libra. Mars in Scorpio grants the ability to focus intently on one’s goals and pursue a matter to its bloody end. When hen Mars steps into Scorpio, he does so as its rightful ruler. The warrior strides into the palace of bones,, dons the demon’s mask and goes to work. All other planets present in Scorpio take their lead from Mars. And this year the sole resident of Scorpio is Venus, who is determining the balance for the affairs of both the Sun and Mercury Retro in Libra. Thiss places Mars at the top of the chain of command. This puts, Venus in Mars’ employ, serving as lady assassin. And since Venus will be running the show for planets in Libra, this is crucial indeed. One of the observable changes will be that social niceties serve blunt power interests, serving only to add emotion, or at best, a diplomatic gloss to tense relationships. We can expect the political campaigns in the U U.S .to get vicious from this point onward. onward
October 13th-22st: Stress Homeostasis Essential Nature of the Third Decanate of Libra The third decanate of Libra is ruled by Jupiter, the planet of growth, wisdom and abundance. Inserting itself into the unfolding problems, it yields a temporary solution. And so the 4 of Swords, the card with which the 3rd decan of Libra is equated, is called “Truce.” “Truce” is an interesting term, as it implies the conflict which it brings a temporary end to. This can be contrasted meaningfully with the 2 of Swords, given to the 1st decan of Libra, which is called “Peace.” Peace implies a state of being whose only possibility for change is to be broken, while “Truce” refers to what is likely a temporary cessation of hostilities. The card refers to a break from the state of disorder, but does not indicate that the root of the conflict has yet been resolved.
October 13th-22nd, 2008: Stress Homeostasis The themes activated by the 3rd Decan of Libra are especially pertinent this year. For while the Sun is in this decanate, Mercury will finally station direct. This occurs on October 16th, ending the most maddening stretch of its retrograde cycle. And it will be during the Sun’s stay in the 3rd decan, Truce, that a financial stimulus package will emerge in some form from the halls of the U.S. congress, bringing a temporary respite to the troubled U.S. economy. But as the symbolism of the decan suggests, this temporary truce will make no great strides towards addressing the key imbalances which brought about the crisis. So it goes. The Full Moon in Aries comes on the 14th, just before Mercury does an about-face, finally ready to bring an end to the retrograde. Things climax and then calm down a bit as the Full Moon passes and Mercury’s resumes forward motion. Towards the end of Sun’s stay in the last decan of Libra, Venus leaves the succubus’ bodice behind and puts on the cheerleader outfit she’ll be wearing throughout her stay in Sagittarius. With Mercury no longer retrograde and Venus out of Scorpio, the Sun will leave Libra on a more straightforward note than it entered.
Despicable Daring by Nick Civitello Mars archetypes are easy to write about, as their action-fueled nature makes them stand out. Long before Hollywood, producers of entertainment have been calling soldiers from the barracks and onto the stage or page in order to spice things up with some lovely discord. After all, the concept of “conflict” is integral to any progression of plot. If there was no point of contention, there would be no story. In the 1930's and 40's, writers, artists, and producers took particular notice of an underused, but unusually strong martial current. This character-type found itself cast in the starring role in many films of that era. Like most healthy Mars archetypes, they carried a sense of courage and daring in the face of adversity, a relentless drive to complete their mission, and a penchant for dispensing justice along the way. Unlike other Mars archetypes, however, their actions were motivated by an intense emotional focus, one that they would likely conceal for fear of a revealed weakness. Also of note was their willingness to face any pain or disgrace in the successful completion of their goal. This is what you get when Mars is in Scorpio, its seat of dignity in the second half of the year. A water sign, on first glance, does not seem an ideal place to find Mars: its pro-active attitude works best when given a clear target, unobstructed by Water's distortive quality. Water, also being associated with the soft and emotional, is also typically associated with characters that are thought of as mild and compassionate. Scorpio surely can be these things, but is not typically thought of as such. Their hearts are worn far from their sleeves, held in the mud and sediment below a river's torrent. Their surface actions indicate a shameless and unscrupulous individual, likely looked upon with disdain by polite society. Scorpio's sustained mode mobilizes its Water into a force that will do whatever it must in order to get from one point to the next. Unlike other Mars archetypes who might smash through a boulder in one powerful go, Mars in Scorpio might avoid it by moving around it, going underneath it, or even by slow erosion of any obstructions. This translates into lying, cheating, stealing, scamming, manipulating, and most importantly, terrorizing people into lifting obstacles from Mars' path. When the Mars in Scorpio character is the leading man in a movie, we often call that “film noir,” and while they may be labeled as protagonists, you'd be hard-pressed to find those that would call these characters heroes. Rather, this genre of film popularized a hard-boiled version of the anti-hero in the gumshoe, the shadowy and crafty private eye. These characters were made popular in books by Raymond Chandler, Dashiell Hammett, and Mickey Spillane, to name just a few, and later became the backbone of what is now known as film noir. The genre itself serves as a journey across the rotten underbelly of day-to-day life, and who better to watch our backs than Mars in Scorpio? It is also worth a chuckle that Scorpio rules the genitals, and these detectives are sometimes called “private dicks.”
"She was worth a stare. She was trouble.”
There's something of a formula to these stories. The man in the middle of the mystery is not always an actual private detective, but always ends up trying to solve the thing anyway, so it's likely more convenient to write the protagonist as a man with a professional interest. However, since the motivating factor is emotional, many of the best noirs don't have a professional detective at their center. Now, what is required is an emotional catalyst to jump start the proceedings. This usually comes in the form of a woman, the natural counterpart of the “private dick,” commonly referred to as a femme fatale. These dangerous but alluring women show up, ask for help, promise generous compensation, and leave the protagonist to do the dirty work. The first thing we can surmise is that she's not telling the entire truth, and that she's mixed up in something deadly. Whether or not she is actually a woman of ill-intent is another matter altogether, and a factor that changes from story to story. In the case of films like The Big Sleep or Chinatown, our man does what he does because he's fallen for the woman, and can't help but follow her into Hell to try and rescue her...and turn a profit, if he's able. The same could also be said for Casablanca, where Bogart's character “Rick” realizes that the only way to protect the woman he loves is to send her far away from him and into the arms of another man. In the 1944 classic, Double Indemnity, an insurance salesman (played by Fred McMurray) is approached by a housewife (played by Barbara Stanwyck,) who, after some flirtation, makes inquiries as to how she would be able to take out a policy on her husband without his knowledge. The two eventually begin a romance, plot his murder, and collect double the amount of the policy by making his death look accidental. The complications begin when they attempt to get away with the money and resume their affair. By the time our man realizes he's been played for a fool, and that our femme fatale is now plotting his own demise, he's too strongly coiled around the situation to disengage and walk away. The only thing left to do is to self-destruct, and take her along. Sometimes, though, the femme fatale is simply a red herring, or an extra trapping which has little to do with the detective's reasons. In The Maltese Falcon, for example, the events play out in a similar fashion to the previous synopsis: a woman approaches a detective with an assignment for him, asking
him to track down a priceless artifact. In the ensuing investigation, Bogart's partner is killed, and it is revealed that the woman is tangled up with some very unsavory characters who would like to find the artifact before she's able. She, of course, still appears to be a well-meaning girl who's found herself in a bad situation. It is not until the film's climax, when all of the bad guys have been killed, outsmarted, or arrested, and we think that Bogart and the broad can go start a new life together – it is not until then that Bogart tells the woman that he knows it was she that killed his partner, that her role in the plot was far greater than she let on, and that the police are on their way to arrest her, too. The motivation for Mars in Scorpio, in this instance, was based on justice and revenge, and was well-concealed by Bogart's seeming indifference to his partner's death. In the 1990 film Miller's Crossing, Tom Reagan is the top advisor to a mafia boss named Leo. The two have a longstanding friendship and a deep admiration for one another, but parts ways when they quarrel over the same woman. This comes at an inconvenient time, as other gangs in the area are becoming stronger, and Leo's control is being buckled. Following their quarrel, Tom declares that he is through with Leo. He appears to join up with the rival gangs to oppose Leo, but what he is actually doing is manipulating them from the inside out, causing them to destroy one another and themselves. And yet, when all is said and done, and all the enemies are vanquished, he still leaves town, insisting that they are through. When Verna, the woman at the center of the disagreement, asks Tom why he's done this, “I thought you said you don't care about Leo no more.” He replies, “I said we're through. That's not the same thing.” His heart's priorities wouldn't allow him to walk away from a friendship while that friend was still in mortal danger. The Planet That Wasn't There In the last century, many astrologers have considered Scorpio to be one of three double-ruled signs, along with Aquarius and Pisces, in order to account for the three “outer planets” of our solar system that have been discovered more recently. The epiphanies of Uranus have come to be associated with the iconoclastic Aquarians, whereas Neptune's realm of fantasy and horror is close to home for Pisces. Scorpio got the last little bundle of darkness, Pluto, named for the Roman God of Death and Wealth. Its function is to destroy all that passes through until only its essence remains. Though its process is unbearably painful, its ability to mutate and transform can bring a person closer to who they really are and what they must truly do. The association with Scorpio, so willing to suffer and change if it meets its goal, is kind of a no-brainer.
Or at least, it would be if people still considered Pluto a planet. As it stands, Pluto has been demoted, and is one of several â€œicy dwarf planets.â€? And while that doesn't change its astrological function, some now question its status as a planetary ruler of Scorpio. The jury's still out for me; I've heard good arguments on either side. I bring this up not to stir up an argument, but to point out that the resonance between this sign and this planet is unmistakable, whether or not that resonance denotes rulership. For proof, we need only turn our attention back to this same genre of film â€“ most particularly to its setting and its characters. Firstly, it's of some interest that Pluto, the God, had a special hat which allowed to walk the Earth, invisible to the naked eye. Most noir protagonists can be found under the brim of a fedora, behind a long trenchcoat, or wearing some other just-a-little-too-conveniently inconspicuous garb. Pluto demands subterfuge and Mars demands armor, and this is the result. Then we have the setting. The noir setting is always the same, even if it's different. The old detective films usually take place in the seedy underbelly of a city. David Lynch's psychonoir Blue Velvet takes place in the seedy underbelly of a small town, as does Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt. The neo-noir mystery Brick, a personal favorite of mine, takes place in the seedy underbelly of a high school in California, and the sci-fi noir Blade Runner takes place in the seedy underbelly of a city...in the future! Whatever the time, place, or circumstance, there is always a dark corner where unsavory characters meet. There is an underworld in the shadow of every shining heaven, its denizens seen as vile scum. But it is a place that our protagonists must traverse in order to accomplish what they must, despite the physical or emotional change that will take place. Some, like the hero of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang grow and change into more capable people. Others, like Jake from Chinatown, get their hearts broken and their faces cut up. It comes with the territory.
What do Sam Spade and Hattori Hanzo have in common? Now for a fun sidenote: If you're into Japanese media (like me,) an enlightening comparison compariso for illustration of the Mars in Scorpio archetype can be found in the division between the samurai and the ninja. A samurai, motivated by a warrior's code and a fiery ambition to prove his name through valorous combat, will call out his foes to fight on one-on-one in an open challenge. This “death before dishonor” mindset is what caused so many valiant men to off themselves by way of seppuku when they felt they had shamed themselves or their retainers. Seppuku, if you don't know, is an act of ritual suicide, suici wherein the suicidal party sits in seiza, drives a knife into his or her own stomach, reaches inside the laceration, and attempts to pull out their own entrails. Regardless of whether or not they are able to fully eviscerate themselves, the suicidal p party arty is then beheaded by a “second,” a trusted person who stands over them with katana raised to put their friend out of his misery. The ninja, as legend has it, were started by samurai who didn't think seppuku sounded like an appealing way to end one's life. They chose dishonor before death (Fixed Water continues life by any means,) fleeing with their families far into the mountains where they could not be found. It was there where they learned martial arts from Chinese expatriates, and devised the their ir myriad tactics for concealing weapons, making and deploying poisons, sabotage, disguise, and assassination. Unlike their portrayal in popular media, ninja were not usually clad in all all-black black bodysuits. They were more likely to dress as an everyday peasant in order to more successfully conceal themselves in a village or city. Whereas samurai challenged their foes with brash and bluster, a good ninja would not be noticed until they were long gone. They were not there to fight, they were there to kill. ll. Ninja might have been the focus of this article if not for their more common media portrayal as fireball-throwing, purple-haired haired anime magicians who play by their own rules and can't afford to lose. Maybe they'll get some spotlight when Mars m moves into Sagittarius. Speaking of which, the “secret agent” archetype in espionage films is decidedly Mars in Scorpio, but James Bond shot that archetype in the head with his Walther PPK, cocky grin affixed to face and bitch in one arm, while saying something full of cloying wit. Once again, see Mars in n Sagittarius.
Desire’s Psychopomp By Austin Coppock and Ryan Valentine Venus remains in Scorpio for most of the Sun’s stay in Libra. As both the Sun and a retrograde Mercury in Libra will look to Venus for direction, it behooves as to lift the skirts of Venus in Scorpio a little higher than we might otherwise. While in Scorpio, Venus plumbs the catacombs of intimacy, seeks the depths of desire and finds the hell of overwhelming need packed to brim with tortured souls. Mercury retrograde is already in a mood to go beneath words and appearances, and at the beck and call of Venus in Scorpio, he is compelled to strip away veneers in order to expose the molten rivers of desire simmering beneath the skin of social exchanges. These underworld rivers are polluted, and emotions concealed for social reasons toxify these dark streams. Hidden hatreds, jealousies, and guilts swim these waters, like piranha. Venus in Scorpio’s power is to seduce us to these infernal depths. To do she takes on the archetypal persona of the Succubus/Incubus, the demon which uses sex men and women into damnation. If we understand the infernal to be the morally forbidden part of the unconscious psyche, then the Incubus/Succubus is the lone figure which can tempt us to contradict our sense of what is “right.” We escape the law abiding, super egoic side of ourselves only when the desire which the Incubus/Succubus represents (and is powered by) overwhelms it. In traditional, Christian lore, the Succubus/Incubus, appeared before virtuous, sexually frustrated people and tempted them to pledge themselves to the Devil. Any relationship to this spirit was inherently negative, as it connoted damnation. Now, many of us (post)moderns have a different relationship to our psyches. The boundaries between good and evil are largely relative to our evolutionary tasks/goals/processes, and naturally undergo upheaval several times in a spiritually vital life. For a person with this mindset, the Succubus/Incubus plays the role of an emissary from a forbidden part of the unconscious, represented in the Christian schema as hell. The Succubus/Incubus is a psychopomp of desire.
Now, despite the fact that the era from which we have emerged was characterized by excessive repression, repression still has its place in the healthy mind. In a committed relationship, for example, the desire to fuck other people is repressed, and quite rightly so, as its consequences can be heartbreaking. And yet the Succubus’ function is still valid. One must know what they desire in others, that they might find it in those available to them. Another instance where the Succubus often strikes is when former Lovers have parted, but the umbilicus of desire has not yet been cut. Although the rational mind knows that to reconnect with the person would be disastrous, the desire-nature still wants. Here the impulse to connect is forbidden, and pushed underground., banished to psychic hell. Here the Succubus/Incubus pulls us back to the relationship, often with dramatic and unpleasant consequences. At other times, the spirit of the Succubus/Incubus is our ally, drawing us into the pleasures we have wrongly denied ourselves, not to mention the truth contained in such pleasures. The Succubus is a spirit of the mind whose function is to draw us toward the desires we have damned. It is up to us decide when and where to accept its call. Which brings us, strangely, to the popular online role-playing game, World of Warcraft. World of Warcraft : For Kids Jung and Old! In the World of Warcraft, one can choose to play many different characters with different professions and skill sets. The one that is of key interest here is the “Warlock” which draw their power from their ability to summon infernal creatures to aid them. Most prominent of these creatures is none other than the Succubus. Here, we see an ideal arrangement, where one masters their call to the dark side of their desires, summoning it at will and getting support from it, but not being bound or enslaved by it. This demon-summoner type character, like many in roleplaying games, is a fantasy projection of a state of ideal personal development, where powers over oneself, which are typically invisible to others, are externalized in a flamboyant manor, made visible as magic. Unfortunately, this is a fantasy projection. When we consider that World of Warcraft has pushed video game addiction into the world of medical and psychological concern, it is pretty clear that mere ingestion of this meme is not enough to trigger governance over one’s pleasures. Regardless, World of Warcraft provides a fantastic projection of the ideal relationship we seek with the Succubus/Incubus archetypal cluster within our lives.
World of Witchcraft The Succubus/Incubus is a persistent creature. He/she not only makes a cameo in the World of Warcraft, but in a dozen cultures, and in a hundred other video games, comic books and movies. Some people have long since recognized the importance of the psychic cluster represented by the Incubus/Succubus, and have developed more effective methods for getting acquainted with these energies than playing World of Warcraft ad nauseum. In N. America we have a sadly limited understanding of the practice and profound window into the Self and the World provided by Traditional Witchcraft. In the Americas the Wiccan movement has sought to deepen its understanding of those ways it once embodied and lost over the years of persecution and marginalization. One of the people, who, in recent years, made great strides towards recovering and reinvigorating Traditional Witchcraft’s methods was Andrew Chumbley. Now deceased, Chumbley was at first published only in very limited numbers. His work, however has slowly but surely invaded the consciousness of the Americas and its practitioners of Witchcraft (as well as Houdeaux,). His works have become highly sought after source texts for both solo and coven work. In the I-Azoetia, Chumbley lucidly and systematically lays out the formula for a practicing Witch's journey to self-realization and occult empowerment. The ritual text provided at the end of this piece was taken from the 'I-Azoetia,' and is, in essence, a conjuration of the Succubus. It can be found under the title 'CONCERNING THE FORMS AND FUNCTIONS OF THE SEXUAL GENII,' in Chumbley’s examination of the 21st Holy Letter. The following text may be read as poetry, used as mantra in order to guide meditation, or performed in a more traditional ritual manner in order to help bring one’s mind directly to bear upon the erotic undercurrents that make up the Incubus/Succubus complex. A Scorpio Moon is recommended for its recitation.
O' Thou who dost watch at the Threshold of Birth, Prepare ye the Powers Invisible at the Points of their Ingress unto the Visible. Ordain ye their Order, empower or restrain as ye will. By Thine Hand lead Thou the Spate of the Stars unto the Wombs of the Earth. Guide Thou the Lightning and gird the Lightning-struck Tree. O' Ye Genii of the Twenty-first Holy letter, who hath all Power and Authority over the Pathways unto the Gates of Ingress, guard, guide and empower ye the Deed of this Spell. By the Word 'LILLETU'- pronounced by the Queen of the Sabbat, uttered by She whose Kteis hath enshrined the Spirit and the Powers of the Goddess - by this Word transmitted through the Ministry of the Opposer -1 summon, bind and control all diverse aspects and manifestations of the Incubus. By the Word 'LILLATU'- pronounced by the King of the Sabbat, uttered by He whose Phallus hath enshrined the Spirit and the Powers of the God - by this Word transmitted through the Ministry of the Opposer -I summon, bind and control all diverse aspects and manifestations of the Succubus.
O' Ye Spirits Male-Female in alternation, Ye Phantoms of Lust from Obsessions begotten, Ye Children of the Phallus and the Kteis Insatiate, Arise from the dust of Dead Lovers and Loves. O' Thou forsaken concubine, O' Thou murderous ghosts of the Whore, Arise and gather flesh from the dust of dead gods, And in the smoke of Circle-fire and Candle-flame, Show Thyself in Beauty's Form. Seek Thou to slay me in the Bed of Corruption, O' Ye Vampyres, Ye Shadows who ravish the Dream! Ye Torturers and Knife-turners of the Heart's lasting torment, I will be led by Thee, seduced and downcast by Thee. I will chance the Corpse's embrace to know of that Secret love which lies beyond the Curse of Thee.
O' Ye Spirits Female-Male in alternation, Ye Succubi and Ye Incubi, come forth as fair bacchante, with no will but for my pleasure, come forth unto Sabazian Throne. Thy Subtle Flesh and Serpent's Kiss expose the Black Goat's Heart in me. Ye Powers and Ye Spirits of the Lillitu, bear witness unto these Spells whereby I prepare the Paths for Thine Ingress unto the Agapae of the Earthly Sabbat. Hearken and attend to the Decree of my Desire, that in my Present Embodiment amid the Race of Man I may transmute from the Mundane Carnality of Self the Equilibrium and Impetus of the Primal Sexuality of I. By mine Hand and Eye I ordain the Alpha and Omega of Creation and Destruction. By the Pleasures of the Satyr, Nymph, Whore and Hag I will enter the Gates of the New Eden, wherein am I the Serpent and the Eldest God: the Risen Star of Morning and Evening conjoined in the Midnight of Our Sacred Agapae.
About The Authors Austin Coppock(alypse) Austin Coppock is an author, astrologer and occultist living in the Northwestern United States. He graduated from Antioch College with majors in Philosophy and Psychology, but was soon seduced away from ivory-tower approved reading lists by the insistent allure of arts and sciences forbidden and forgotten by our modern era. After a few years immersed in the study of an obscure style of kung-fu, the fates pulled him to his current work as an astrology instructor and consultant. He is reportedly the depraved mind behind the weekly astrology column “Abyssal Epistles,” and is the editor and creator of “Night Sky Strategies.” You can contact Austin for private consultations, astrology classes, and rabid praise. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Weekly Column: http://www.myspace.com/baronsamadhi
Nick Civitello Nick Civitello is a playwright and astrologer based out of Orlando, FL. His work has been featured in Sydney’s Short and Sweet New Play Festival as well as Playwrights’ Rountable ’08 Launch. He maintains a blog which matches up pop-culture mythos with astrological archetypes: Nerdcore Astrotypes. For more information, please visit the following url: Nerdcore Blog: http://nerdcoreastro.blogspot.com/ Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/boomboomastro
Ryan Valentine Ryan Valentine lives quietly in Canada where he tends to his immense garden of marijuana, and performs gay marriages when he isn't fervently campaigning the American Government to relax its censorship of the pornography industry. He is also the editor of the Sutra of the Poison Buddha. Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/poisonbuddha
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