I wrapped up this Arbatel working for now, completing another 2 weeks since my last notes about it. I also modified and simplified my previous notes about the planetary signatures.
Medieval occultists treated the “intelligences” discussed in the Arbatel—the archonic planets, which the Arbatel’s author calls Olympic Spirits—as entities that were god-like but neither gods, demons, nor angels. They are spiritual rulerships or, as stated, intelligences, of the classical planets: Luna, Mercury, Venus, Sol, Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. These intelligences were among the myriad spiritual beings that medieval occultists, ironically steeped in Judaic and Christian mysticism, consorted with. By referring to them as angels, demons, elementals, intelligences, and other such names and by working with them through commandeering codes that involved magical use of Hebrew godnames, scriptural passages, and very pious-sounding diatribes, they felt confident that they were not engaged in heathen animism or polytheism. But in perusing material related to medieval ceremonial magic, it seems to me that the Judeo-Christian occultists of that time—many of which were monks and clerics—were more animistic and polytheistic (and perhaps diabolical) than their ancient pre-Christian counterparts.
In my cursory review of ancient spiritual beliefs, the pre-Christian spirituality of the ancient Mid-East and Mediterranean regions seemed to be somewhat similar to Hindu spirituality. Some adherents were hard polytheists or animists; others, especially the mystical and intellectual set, saw the deities and other denizens of a spiritual world as metaphors about the Cosmos and Consciousness. They realized that deity was an extension and projection of themselves that they had become estranged from and that the purpose of life was identification, reintegration, and expression of divinity.
Celestial bodies represented gods and some of those gods—represented by the planets—were believed to influence a person’s character and fate. Spirituality for some became how to break away from this circumstance. For example, Ophite Gnostics thought that the soul descended through the planets, as if in a process of emanation, and became sullied through their respective influences. The spiritual quest was to mystically and psychodynamically ascend back through the planets, sloughing off the taints that the planets had impressed on the soul. Medieval hermeticists held a related idea, and saw the alchemical laboratory process as an ascent of the soul through the planetary metals in quest of true nature and perfection. Well, this concept is similar to the Eastern Tantric idea of emanation and descent and ascent through the chakras. And Kabalist lore, absorbed into medieval Hermetic mysticism, has parallels with Tantric lore in this regard
During the first week of the Working, I was met with a great deal of imagery in which associations with godforms, narrative intellection, and dialoging, and also terms that I had to follow up on were experienced. The imagery and messages were mostly reinforced during the second week but were less dynamic. The godforms seemed reluctant in the 3rd week but yet there was as strong reiteration of their core messages. I also had many vivid, surreal, and narrative dreams during this time, which is otherwise uncommon for me. As the process ensued, messages became less narrative and the mind was ironically quiet and clear when I wanted it to be open to imagery.
For the first 3 weeks, I was receiving communications about being focused and directed only to be told at the end of the third week by a prospective employer that my verbal communication was unfocused and rambling. It was as if the messages received in these meditations were premonitory, but I was too dense to “get it.” Indeed, I had had a dream sequence in which I asked a man with feral eyes what my prospects were about the job. The character’s mood changed from affable to oblique, and he said that I needed to “check the company’s policy on that.” I had endured a long interview process in relation to this particular position, and so I was very upset when I was disqualified. My upset was compounded by unwelcome comments from a close relative. Difficult memories from the past welled up to merge with the angst felt in my present circumstance. At the same time, I was receiving instructions about combating obstructions and how to completely dampen an attachment to an estranged acquaintance. I began to think that the Working was inciting a psychodynamic catharsis in which I had to review and question belief, self, circumstance, and meaning. It was natural that events would occur that would act as provocations under this influence. This gave me solace and fortitude as I went into the fourth and last week of the Working.
In the fourth week, I was encouraged to scry using bluish crystal orb I had purchased about 20 years ago and purportedly was made from something that had spewed out of Mt. St. Helen’s. I had not scryed successfully before, but I was able to envision relevant forms in the orb this past week. Ultimately, the meditation would resolve into the core “feeling” of the respective planetary intelligence and also into spaciousness and presence.
The “take-home” message about the Working was to not regard the Spirits as entities per se, but to know and feel their energy signature, integrate it, and express it when appropriate. There is much to relate in detail about each of Spirits I encountered, but I think working up such a document will take some time.