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Christopher Warnock, Esq.
Marsilio Ficino's Venus Talisman
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Introduction

Description of Election & Talisman Image

Election Chart for Talisman

Venus Talisman Image

Music Appropriate for Making a Venus Talisman

Results




Introduction

The art of astrological magic and the creation of astrological talismans was brought to new heights of beauty and harmony by the great Renaissance philosopher, translator and astrological mage Marsilio Ficino. His Three Books on Life which concerns itself with using the influences of the Heavens, particularly for health, is one of the most important sources of traditional astrological magic.
In this example, Ficino uses the principles of electional astrology and Hermetic and Neo-Platonic philosophy to create a talisman of the planet Venus.


Description of Election & Talisman Image

The election comes from chapter 18 of book three of Ficino's Three Books on Life.
"For gaiety and strength of body [they made an image of] a young Venus holding apples and flowers in her hand, dressed in yellow and white, made in the hour of Venus, when the first face of Libra, or of Pisces, or of Taurus, was ascending with her."
Marsilio Ficino, Three Books on Life, Bk. III. Chap. 18, trans. Kaske & Clarke (MRTS 1989) p. 335. The hour of Venus is a planetary hour ruled by Venus. See The Planetary Days and Hours. Thus we must find an election when it is Venus hour and Venus is in the ascendant as well as being in the first ten degrees of either Libra or Taurus, the signs she rules, or Pisces, her exaltation.

Election Chart for Talisman

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On January 9, 2001 at 9:50 am EST at my location, Washington, D.C., 38 N 55 77 W 03, 4 degrees and 51 minutes of Pisces ascends.
Regiomontanus Houses
9:50 a.m. (EST +5) January 9, 2001
Washington, D.C. 38 N 55 77 W 03

It is the planetary hour of Venus. Venus is at 6 degrees and 20 minutes of Pisces, its exaltation and is conjunct the ascendant. We note that Venus is making an applying trine to Mars. As Venus is in Pisces, a water sign, and Mars is the night triplicity ruler of water signs, Venus is in one of the dignities of Mars, his triplicity, and thus Venus is said to be received by Mars. As the trine is with reception and Mars is strong as it is in Scorpio, which it traditionally rules, Venus is not afflicted by this its sole aspect. Additionally, the Moon is strong since it is in Cancer which it rules. Thus we have fulfilled the astrological factors set out by Ficino for the Venus talisman and this will be the time that we construct the talisman.
Now the talisman itself would probably best be made out of copper since that metal is ruled by Venus. However, I find it more practical to use paper so long as it is clean, blank and previously unused. The paper image, once made, can be incorporated into a piece of jewelry containing copper and other Venusian materials. One of my favorites is lapis lazuli which is attractive and within my price range.

Venus Talisman Image

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If you examine the talisman illustration accompanying this
article, you can see the central figure of Venus holding flowers and apples. To the left is the sign of Venus and underneath it the character of Venus from the 1533 edition of Agrippa's Three Books of Occult Philosophy which I have used because they are not provided by Ficino. To the right the sign of Pisces and its corresponding character from Agrippa. On the bottom left another character or seal of Venus from Agrippa and on bottom right the effect that we wish to manifest.
Thus, at the time at your location that corresponds to 9:50 am EST on January 9, 2001, you would assemble your talisman using as many Venusian factors as possible. Ficino has two additional suggestions for adding strength to the production of a talisman. First, he recommends suffumigation, i.e., the burning of incense. As Ficino does not set forth the incense appropriate to Venus we will consult Agrippa, who lists musk and rose as under the rule of Venus.

Music Appropriate for Making a Venus Talisman

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Finally Ficino recommends music,
"Song, therefore, which is full of spirit and meaning-if it corresponds to this or that constellation not only in the things it signifies, its parts, and the form that results from those parts, but also in the disposition of the imagination-has as much power as does any other combination of things and casts it into the singer and from him into the nearby listener."
Ficino, Three Books on Life, Bk. III, chap. 21, p. 359. Songs corresponding to Venus are, "voluptuous with wantonness and softness." Ficino, Three Books on Life, Bk. III, chap. 21, p. 361. As Ficino was also convinced the of efficacy of the Hymns of Orpheus I append part of the Orphic Hymn to Venus as translated by Thomas Taylor,
Heavv'nly, illustrious, laughter-loving queen,
Sea-born, night-loving, of an awful mien;
Crafty, from whom necessity first came,
Producing, nightly, all connecting dame:
Tis thine the world with harmony to join,
For all things spring from thee, O pow'r divine...

Goddess of marriage, charming to the sight,
Mother of Loves, whom banquetings delight;
Source of persuasion, secret, fav'ring queen,
Illustrious born, apparent and unseen:
Spousal, lupercal, and to men inclin'd,
Prolific, most-desir'd, life giving, kind:
Great sceptre-bearer of the Gods, 'tis thine,
Mortals in necessary bands to join;
And ev'ry tribe of savage monsters dire
In magic chains to bind, thro' mad desire...

Come, all-attractive to my pray'r inclin'd,
For thee, I call, with holy reverent mind.
The Hymns of Orpheus, To Venus, trans. Thomas Taylor [1792], reprint, Los Angeles, CA, Philosophical Research Society, 1981, p. 185.
A very beautiful and useful CD, entitled Secrets of the Heavens can be obtained from River Run Records. This CD combines a recording of the Hymns of Orpheus to the seven planets with readings from Ficino. I have found it quite appropriate for use during the consecration of talismans.
So having assembled your talisman, burn the appropriate incense and listen to, or better yet, sing or play appropriately Venusian music at the time elected. Ficino recommends wearing the completed talisman next to your skin for the best effect.


Results

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I constructed a lapis lazuli bracelet at the date and time given above and incorporated the Venus diagram into it. I made the bracelet/talisman with the aid of a client who had an eating disorder and was recovering from being severely underweight. She reported an immediate psychological boost upon donning the talisman we made and within three days after putting it on her period started again after a two year hiatus. These are appropriate results for a talisman for gaiety and bodily strength, particularly as Venus rules the womb. Cornelius Agrippa, Three Books of Occult Philosophy, Bk. I, Chap. 22, Tyson edition, page 72.
To see if Venus talismans are currently in stock see Venus talismans or Currently Available Talismans.






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Specializing in Horary Astrology, Electional Astrology Astrological Magic and Astrological Talismans.

Copyright 2000, Christopher Warnock, All Rights Reserved.
Portions of this article originally appeared in The Mountain Astrologer