Friday, 28 April 2017

Working with the Behenian Fixed Stars

Aside from the other magickal projects lined up over the next few months, I have an urge to experiment with the properties of the Behenian Fixed Stars set out by Hermes and Agrippa.
The descriptions of their powers can be sourced to the medieval Spanish manuscript Tractatus Enoch (Bodleian MS 52, 44-47, Harley MS 1612, 15-18 and Trinity MS 1313, 11-25), and are activated by etching their glyphs onto the appropriate gemstone then placing the stone upon the corresponding plant mixture. The planetary attributions are those of Ptolemy, and define the corresponding Planetary energies of each star.

The term ‘Behenian’ comes from the Arabic word ‘Bahman’ meaning ‘root’ and in the context of the Fixed Stars refers to those which are considered the root of astrological power. This appears to be a concept mirrored in the twelve stones in the Priestly Breastplate in the book of Exodus, which was used as an oracle used to scry the Divine Will, as well as  the twelve foundation stones of the New Jerusalem in the Book of Revelation. In each of these examples, the gemstones represent the divine source of the power of each astrological sign, and are reflections of the Twelve Lettered Name of God. Indeed, many of those stones match those of the Behenian Fixed Stars, though I'll look at this in more detail another time.

How the stars’ energies can be utilised by the magician through their corresponding stones and plants is explained in the table below.

Hellebore juice with an equal amount of wormwood placed under a diamond, etc., brings hatred and courage, preserves the members of the body, and grants vengeance over anyone you wish.
The Pleiades
Fennel seed with frankincense and quicksilver placed under a crystal with the appropriate character [engraved on it], with the Moon conjunct the Pleiades rising or at Midheaven, preserves the eyesight, summons demons and the spirits of the dead, calls the winds, and reveals secrets and things that are lost.
Milky thistle seed put under a carbuncle with the character shown [engraved on it], with the Moon conjunct [Aldebaran and] the Ascendant or Midheaven, increases riches and brings great honours.
Horehound seed mixed with equal parts of mint, wormwood and mandrake, placed etc., exalts men to honors, and brings them the favor of kings and nobles, and heals toothache, and is very medicinal.
One part savine juniper juice with wormwood and bistort and a little serpent's tongue put under a golden beryl, etc., grants the favour of the spirits of the air and the peoples of the earth, and brings peace and concord between kings and other potentates, and between husbands and wives.
Heliotrope flowers with pennyroyal flowers placed etc. grants the favour of God and man, gives men the favour of the spirits of the air, gives great power over magic, and keeps men healthy.
Celandine juice with wormwood and mastic placed etc. takes away anger and melancholy, makes men temperate, and grants favour.
Chicory juice with wormwood and periwinkle flower placed etc. has power against enchantments and against dryness and gives safety in travel, and if it be put together with wolf's teeth it makes hunters proficient.
Burdock seed, leaves, and roots, with the tongue of a frog, placed etc. makes men angry, hateful, daring, and evil-speaking, causes wicked dreams, drives demons away, and protects men against demons and evil winds.
Sage juice with trefoil, periwinkle, wormwood and mandrake placed etc. will increase gold, accumulate riches, bring victory in lawsuits, and free men from evil and anguish.
Plantain juice with seeds or rooted placed under jasper, especially green [jasper], carries away fevers and restrains the flow of blood.
Juice of the herb called rosemary with equal parts trefoil and ivy put etc., makes men chaste, and grants friendship and honour with God and man.
Birthwort juice with a little yew placed etc. gives men healthy colour, grants good memory and intelligence, makes them appear wise, and banishes demons.
Savoury juice with an equal amount of the herb called fumitory and with a little of the stone called turonso, etc. grants favour with beasts, protects from scabies, that is, against demons, nocturnal phantoms, and fears.
Deneb Algedi
Marjoram juice put under a chalcedony with its proper character, the Moon conjunct the tail of Capricorn rising, gives favour in lawsuits, improves the home in which it is kept, keeps it [the home] secure, and increases all manner of riches.

Although all of the planets are affected by the energies of these Stars on all four Angles, this source only mentions the Moon’s conjunction with them on the Ascendant or the Midheaven. With the Moon being a magickally potent and fast-moving planet, I will only be considering Lunar aspects for now, but I’ll remain open minded to experimenting with other angles and planets should I notice any conjunctions forming I’d like to consider using.

The following chart gives the position of the Fixed Behenian Stars c.2016 and can be consulted to help determine when each star falls on the Ascendant and Midheaven by calculating the point of each day that those particular zodiacal degrees fall on those angles. Once that combination of star and Angle is noted to fall in conjunction with the Moon, the star’s energies are drawn into the stone and plants via their glyphs and utilised to bring the magickal effects described above.

Calculating such times can be done by consulting a chart of Transits, such as the one found here, then noting the time and date that the Moon forms its conjunction with those two angles. This can be a fairly laborious task (which can be helped to some extent by consulting an Ephemeris), but on searching, I’ve found it doesn’t take too long to find a couple of upcoming conjunctions (with an orb of less than 3°, though some believe 6° is acceptable) of the Moon, a pertinent Angle and a Fixed Star.

Moon Conjunctions with the Ascendant, Midheaven and Behenian Fixed Stars
Moon ! AS
Moon ! MC
2°36' Gemini
7°46' Gemini
18° 08' Gemini
23°12' Gemini
+1° 07'
3° 29' Cancer
8° 39' Cancer
18° 35' Cancer
23° 31 Cancer
-2° 29'

These calculations consist of conjunctions at the point of Midheaven over London, England. The Transit Charts for them are found below.

Moon Conjunct Midheaven and Capella, 16:00hrs, 29th April, 2017

Moon Conjunct Midheaven and Procyon, 18:03hrs, 1st May, 2017 

Once a longer list of correct timings has been constructed, I intend to select an aim consistent with my Will and perform a suitable Behenian operation and post the method, results and conclusions here.

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