Estimated Reading Time: 5 minutes
2017 Spring Blog Hop Master List
Following is the master list of blogs participating in the 2017 Spring Tarot Blog Hop. The theme is The Magic of Images and each blogger will explore tarot, images, and magic.
- M Juniper Tarot of Lost Star Tarot
- Karen Sealey of The Pure and Blessed Way
- Joanne Sprott of Cosmic Whispers Tarot
- Aisling the Bard of Tarot Witchery
- Kiss Boglarka of Vadrozsa Tarot
- Christiana Gaudet of ChristianaGaudet.com
- Joy Vernon of Completely Joyous
- James Bulls of Left-Hand Tarot
- Morgan Drake Eckstein of Gleamings of the Golden Dawn
- Jay Cassels of Metaphysical Angels
About the Theme: The Magic of Images
For the Denver Tarot Geeks, we’ve been slowly working our way through The Picatrix, an astrological magic grimoire originally written in Arabic in the ninth century. The Picatrix is one of several sources that lists specific written out descriptions of images assigned to the thirty-six decans of astrology—the three 10-degree portions of each of the twelve zodiacal constellations.
Astrological magic, like comedy which has nothing to do with this post, depends on timing. The energy is raised by doing the ritual at a specific time when a certain energy naturally occurs cosmically. The earthly magical practitioner connects to that energy through rituals, invocations, and the creation of magical images.
One of the timing techniques used in the Picatrix is planetary rulership by face. The twelve zodiacal constellations are each divided into three 10 degree sections called decans or faces. These thirty-six decans are each ruled by one of the seven classical planets. The astrological faces also correspond to the forty Minor Arcana pip cards, minus the Aces. So each of the pip cards numbered 2 through 10 of each suit corresponds to a planet in its rulership by face.
When the appropriate planet transits the decan it rules, magic rituals can be done to bring about the qualities assigned to the face. These qualities vary greatly and can be positive or negative, relevant today or outmoded. Some are described in the text more clearly than others Due to the speeds of the individual planets, some come about frequently, some only once in a generation. Some planets will whip through the decans they rule in a few hours or a few days, others will stay for months.
Today marks the spring equinox, the beginning of the tropical sign of Aries. The three decans of Aries are ruled, in order, by Mars, the Sun, and Venus. Mars has already passed through the first decan of Aries. Some of us in the Tarot Geeks captured its energy with rituals done in the beginning of February. But the other two planets will be in the decan they rule over the next couple of months. Following are the magical images from the Picatrix for each of these three faces:
- “The first face of Aries is Mars, and there rises in it according to the opinion of the great sages in this science, the image of a black man, with a large and restless body, having red eyes and with an axe in his hand, girded in white cloth, and there is a great value in his face. This is a face of strength, high rank and wealth without shame. This is its form.”
- 2 of Wands
- This planetary position will next happen on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2018 moving into its face between 7 and 8 p.m. that evening and staying there until January 15, 2019 about 3 p.m.
- For strength, high rank and wealth without shame
- “There ascends in the second face of Aries a woman dressed in green clothes, lacking one leg. This is a face of high rank, nobility, wealth and rulership. This is its form.”
- 3 of Wands
- The Sun will be in the second face of Aries from about 7 a.m. on March 30 until 10 a.m. on April 9.
- For magical rites to bring about high rank, nobility, wealth and rulership
- “There rises in the third face of Aries, a restless man, holding in his hands a gold bracelet, wearing red clothing, who wishes to do good, but is not able to do it. This is a face of subtlety and subtle mastery and new things and instruments and similar things. This is its form.”
- 4 of Wands
- Venus will be in the third face of Aries this year from May 26, around 10 a.m. until 1:26 a.m. on June 6.
- To achieve subtlety and subtle mastery and new things and instruments and similar things
If you’re not entirely certain of what the odd image descriptions have to do with anything, don’t worry, you’re not alone. The Picatrix offers these but doesn’t specifically say what to do with them (of course, I’m only about half-way through the book). Conventional wisdom seems to be that you should draw them as part of your magical ritual. This is where your creativity comes in!
Your mission should you choose to accept it:
- Design a tarot spell, tarot talisman, tarot ritual, or magical image to invoke the qualities of Mars in Aries, the Sun in Aries, and/or Venus in Aries. You can design and perform your tarot magic and share your results as your post, or you can develop and share a process for us to do.
- You can write about previous spells/talismans/rituals you’ve created/performed that have incorporated tarot.
- You can discuss tarot as a magical/ritual tool
- You can analyze the Picatrix images (or choose decanate images from another tradition) in comparison to the corresponding tarot cards and see what you discover (check out Austin Coppock’s 36 Faces)
- You can design/share tarot card tricks (sleight of hand magic)
- You can discuss the magical/dreamlike/mysterious qualities of tarot or tarot readings
- Grab anything that intrigues you in the theme write up and see where it takes you
Mission Due Tomorrow
- Design and share a tarot spread for finding magic in your life
- Design and share a recipe or favorite food based on any of our Aries cards (2, 3, or 4 of Wands, Emperor, Queen of Wands) or the Magician card because screw astrology I thought the topic was magic
- Discover the magic of tarot as it unfolds through stream of consciousness writing! Magic Images Go!
For more information on the TarotBlogHop and to join our community, please visit us on Facebook.
Joy Vernon is widely recognized by tarot professionals as an expert tarot teacher and respected community leader. With over twenty years’ experience teaching energetic and esoteric modalities, Joy brings expertise and practiced familiarity to her specialty of esoteric tarot, which layers astrological and qabalistic symbolism onto the traditional tarot structure. Under her leadership, the Denver Tarot Meetup has grown into one of the largest and most active tarot-specific meetups in the world. Joy works as a tarot reader, astrologer, and teacher at Isis Books. To learn more, please visit JoyVernon.com.