Planetary Forces – Uranus

This is the first of three posts on the outer planets, those seemingly unknown to the ancients. Whether these planets were really unknown is not the issue, though. The issue is that these planets were not used in the casting of horoscopes. The explanation usually given is that these outer planets made their appearances (were discovered) at a time that was most apropos to their function in the human psyche.

In Tarot, the outer planets are given as rulers of the elements (Saturn, the outermost in the ancient planets is given as ruler of elemental Earth – compare this with my post on Saturn here).

Uranus, elemental Air

The first of the outer planets to consider is Uranus, elemental Air. It corresponds to the Fool (Major Arcana Key 0), and the Tarot suit of Swords. I have posted on the Fool here.

The element of Air is associated with quick thought and movement. There is a gregarious quality to it, and those with much Air in their temperaments are quick-thinking and sociable. However, the dark side of Air is cold, aloof, and sometimes cruel.

The Fool is often paired with the so-called transpersonal chakra, located about 18 inches above the head. It is where we commune with the rest of the human race.

Uranus is considered to be a higher octave of Mercury, another fast-moving entity. As such, it has the same note (E natural) as Mercury and the Magician. This planet (with Saturn) co-rules Aquarius, the astrological sign of humanitarianism. Its discovery in 1781 came at a time of the eruption of new thoughts and bold visions (like that upstart nation the USA), so those things are associated with this planet.

The Fool encourages us to step forward with complete hope. Uranus calls for change. Air appeals to our thinking selves. Put them all together, and one gets results.

Planetary Forces – Mercury

With our visit to Mercury, we have reached the Seventh, or Crown, Chakra. This chakra is associated with the Tarot card The Magician (Major Arcana Key 1).

The Seventh Chakra is our connection to our Higher Self, the place through which divine wisdom enters. But why Mercury for this chakra? Shouldn’t the planet be something, I don’t know, loftier? Well, there are a couple of reasons for this choice.

First off, in mythology Mercury is the messenger of the gods; you know, the guy with wings on his heels, like in the FTD logo. It seems natural to assign the planet Mercury to this chakra, then. Also, Mercury is the communications planet in astrology. Where our Mercury is in our natal chart shows how we think and communicate.

Mercury, the Seventh Chakra planet

Astronomically, Mercury is the closest planet to the Sun, and the Sun is seen in many esoteric traditions as the physical manifestation of the divine in our solar system. As such, Mercury is the intercessor, in that it lies between us and that representation of the godhead. Notice in The Magician, the figure stands with one arm aloft and the other down, directing the force from the above to the below – once again, an intercessor, a messenger, and a transducer of the power from the divine.

But the associations don’t end there. The metal for Mercury is, as you may have guessed, mercury or quicksilver. This curious element is a liquid at room temperature and runs about quickly (if you’ve ever played with it, you know it forms globules and balls that shimmer and move away at a touch). Furthermore, mercury is seen in alchemy as the symbol of the superconscious, the highest source of communication. Sulfur is symbolic of our regular consciousness, while salt is the unconscious, or automatic consciousness.

Too much Mercury leads to a disorganized mind, flitting from one topic to the next, a very ungrounded situation. Too little Mercury beings a dullness of thought, and a rigidity of belief untempered by a true connection to the divine.

The note for Mercury and the Seventh Chakra is E natural. This is the beginning note of the Phrygian mode, a mode used to evoke rapid movement and quickness. It is often used in flamenco music, for example.

Mercury – communication and communion. Listen carefully and you will be able to hear the whisperings of the divine.

Planetary Forces – Moon

Next up is the Sixth (or Brow or Third Eye) Chakra. Its planet is the Moon, and it is associated with the Tarot card The High Priestess (Major Arcana Key 2).

The Sixth Chakra is our center of intuition, and a way of connecting with non-local phenomena and knowledge. This is one of the reasons for the assignment of the High Priestess with this chakra. I posted about the High Priestess here, discussing her association with intuition (the Third Eye). Her position on the Tree of Life acts as a transmitter of Divine wisdom into human nature.

However, there is also an association with memory, both individual and collective, in the

Moon, the Sixth Chakra planet

High Priestess. Where better to place this than smack-dab in the middle of your head?

The Moon is linked in astrology with emotion, and where the Moon is in our natal chart tells a good bit about how we deal with emotion. The Moon is also symbolic of the Mother energy in astrology (Saturn is the father). The sign of Cancer, which the Moon rules, is described as a maternal sign, centered around the home and nurturing.

Balance is important here as well. Too much Moon leads to an over-emotional, unfocused life; too little Moon yields an uncaring, unimaginative one.

The metal of the moon is silver, the “other” precious metal. Like gold, humans have a special affinity for this metal, and it is an even better conductor of electricity than copper. Gold and silver are also the colors of the so-called solar and lunar currents (masculine and feminine; yang and yin) of the body. Their interplay keeps us in balance. Too much (or too little) of one or the other leads to disruptions in many of our natural cycles, resulting in illness or emotional instability.

The note of the Moon is G#, placing it directly between Venus (F#) and Jupiter (A#). Thus, the three brightest non-solar objects are placed as a stellium (another astrological term) within the musical scale.

Never lose touch with the Moon of your being. It is your emotional center, your intuitive feel, and your link to Cosmic Memory.