… that Mars should be the God of War, or Mercury should be the messenger of the Gods.
This is a ‘quote’ taken from John Anthony West’s ‘Case for Astrology’ and is a very good point.
Question: is spending ‘time’ looking-back to the very ‘origins’ of Astrology a good thing to do? i think it is.
When you read his book and hear him ask, ‘and upon whose authority was that accepted’? and how were all the planets ‘functions’ agreed amongst the Astrologer’s of the day? You know you are reading some brilliant stuff.
And he then poses the questions; are the ‘meanings’ attributed to the planets purely arbitrary? and why do ‘these’ meanings go unchallenged?
I will attempt to answer some of it by now suggesting one-way they might have got their ‘order and meaning’ is [by ‘everyday’ objects very ‘closeness’ to us], meaning…
… and using the King/Sun and Queen/Moon ‘model’ we can get somewhere close to ‘why’ the meaning of these things/objects [by the planets] came about.
Hence Mercury had to be writing, partly because you had to use your brain, and also because it was an action which couldn’t be given to the Sun or Moon, [and as in the olden days it wasn’t the King or Queens duties, but the ‘scribes’ who wrote down their words, and these people were kept quite close to them, in the ‘court’ in fact], as were their ‘entertainers’ the ‘minstrels’, and even the ‘mistresses’ as shown by Venus. And we also know soldiers and religious people and Government officials were there too, taking care of Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.
But Mars as a planet, which is past the earth and not an ‘inner’ planet would hold a outer courtly position, [the soliders of to war] and being further-out was fine as they were able to cope on their own, as were people like priests and officials, as shown by Jupiter and Saturn.
It was simply ‘naming’ according to ‘use’ and ‘type’ which had to be followed at the beginning of our Art.
Look at the Sun and you ‘can’ or [should be able to see] why its ‘rulerships’ are ‘what’ they are. Gold, the highest standard which has a shine like the Sun. Kings, ultimate rulers, [as Strong as on a ‘hot’ Sunny day].
But its the Sun’s size, and the fact it is ‘alive’ in ‘energy’ that makes it ‘feel’ closer, and feels more ‘active’ than Venus, Mercury or the Moon. We worship the Sun and some people still like royalty, living off them, in some weird way.
Although they are further away in ‘distance’ [from us] than the Moon, Mercury and Venus have that close relationship to the Sun, and rule-over many things that we keep close-to-hand. Things of use ‘Mercury’ and of vanity ‘Venus’. Whereas the Moon brings things to us on Earth, so we don’t have direct heat/life from the Sun [for our protection perhaps] thinking cosmicly that is.
So thinking further, what should be ruled-over by the planets? well, in the first place… …at the beginning of life its ‘places’ and ‘items’ would’ve become self-evident to many earth-dwellers of the past. From those bright and sunny places, to those more old and ragged ones, symbolised by the planet furthest away from us, Saturn.
But as for types of people and what they ‘do’?, [if you were starting Astrology of from scratch] you would have to think a lot harder and let ‘life’ and its ‘connections’ develop for a while to get your answer[s]. As ever ‘real-life’ on earth informs where stuff gets ‘placed’ in the planetary realms. Its just a simple matching process.
But we get to the ‘time’ when it was becoming obvious that those humans, [and what they did], and those that embodied the ‘Sun’ and its ‘ways’ of ‘standing-alone’ as an authority, and those that radiated like the Sun in countenance, and those who lived like the Sun started to inform early Astrology, as with all the 7 planets.
So now with the Sun we can easily see what ‘positions’ were held in life, and these were easily ‘counted’, and its no great-leap to see why early horoscopes were of ‘Solar’ type people, kings and self-made men. Simply they were the most important ones who lived-out the strongest positions of our mundane world.
So now they had a starting-point, ‘someone or something’ that ‘all else’ could be ‘built-on’. And we still have this ‘system’ in place somewhat today, King, Queen defence and privilege
So the ‘why’, as to why Mercury was given to messengers, and War to Mars gets somewhat ‘clearer’. Life fanning-out in ‘circles’, and later we realised all ‘life’ revolves around the Sun’ not the Earth.
Everything ‘circles’ the Sun, getting further-out, so there are ‘things’ we keep close to us, and those which are more out-of-our-hands, or are in your [direct control] if you have the power. [and we all live and embody the Sun etc] its just to what degree we get a chance on the World’s stage. And because a ‘solar-power’ directs a warring Army, and it keeps its Ministers and Priests informed, and its gate-keepers in the Police working, we have the kind of full intergrated system we have. But each person just by himself can have his own system, be his own policeman etc.
Now, my final thoughts, it does make me wonder ‘why’ we have the planets Mercury and Venus between ‘us’ and the Sun, and i suppose its because they belong to it, more than the Earth, whereas the Moon is most definitely ours, and Mars, Jupiter and Saturn belong and have meaning to the people and places ‘where we go’ beyond ourselves. Into that social realm to coin a already used phrase.
Still, the whole ‘point’ of this post is to talk of ‘assigned’ planetary duties.
Handmaiden’s of the Sun and Moon, Mercury and Venus may be. The King may have his armies, his conquests and his overthrow’s, as are shown by Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.
But for most ‘mortals’ [average men] our personal ‘power’ of the Sun, is surrounded, [or fanned-out] towards Saturn in a rather less ‘dramatic’ way, where we have ‘power’ up-to-the-point when it is taken-over by a larger power, or we get lost within the machinery of the wider world, which has to happen, as to gain power in this world you must take part and put in and take out.
So, it is that the ‘planets’ by their ‘very’ distance from the Sun, and their ‘place’ in the ‘order’ of things, that made Astrology what it is, in a way a already ‘decided’ [divided] system for helping people to be themselves and recognise the ‘life’ around themselves.
But let’s not forget its also in the greater plan of our ‘lives’, with our Sun, heart-beat beginning at birth [also inside the Mother of course] until too-much of Saturn’s dull physical ache destroys us at death. Or by Mars if you meet with a nasty accident.