Black Algol, White Algol and Red Algol

Three Manifestations of the Celestial Spirit of Algol



Red Algol
Red Algol

This page discusses three of the likely infinite manifestations of the celestial spirit/angel of the fixed star Algol: White Algol, Black Algol and Red Algol. This was taught to me directly from a powerful contemporary magical practitioner, rather than coming from a traditional source, but nevertheless, it reflects traditional spiritual and magical practice.

You can learn more about Algol in my books, Fixed Star, Sign and Constellation Magic and Quindecim Stellis: the Comprehensive Translations of Hermes on the Fifteen Fixed Stars. You can learn how to create Algol talismans in the Astrological Magic Course and see all Currently Available Algol talismans as well as a direct link to our Bronze Algol Talismans.

Traditional Sources on Algol

algol white
White Algol

Algol is a bright fixed star, Beta Perseus, the second brightest star in the constellation Perseus and within the constellation located in the Head of the Gorgon Medusa. Algol is actually a three star system that appears to blink as the stars orbit each other closely. The name Algol comes from the Arabic Ras Al-Ghul "the head of the ogre".

In Greek mythology there were three Gorgons, all with snakes instead of hair and whose gaze turned anyone to stone. The Gorgon Medusa was slain by Perseus using magic for invisibility and the mirror reflection of a shield to avoid being turned to stone. Perseus then used the head of the Gorgon Medusa as a weapon as it retained its power to turn to stone.

We can see the multiplicitous nature of Algol beautiful mirrored in the multicolored Roman mosaic of Algol at the top of the page, itself with black, red and white elements, differentiated but unified in Algol. The gorgoneion, a special protective talisman with the Head of the Medusa was widely used in the Classical period. Thus we can see a number of themes reflected in our astrological magic practice, for example the trinity of Gorgons, great and fearsome power and protective abilities.

These seemingly disparate but nevertheless intimitely intertwined qualities are reflected in traditional sources on Algol. In the Quadripertitus the most detailed variant manuscript of Hermes on the Fifteen Fixed Stars it says of Algol "Know that this star is one of the mightiest in the entire firmament, both in nativities and in the conceptions of things [elections]. And if Mars should be with in on the Ascendant or Midheaven, it maketh a man quarrelsome and strong. If the Moon should be with it on the Ascendant, while Mars or Saturn behold it from opposition, [it signifieth trouble and loss] of the head." De Quindecim Stellis, page 22.

Similarly William Lilly in his 1647 Christian Astrology says of Algol in natal charts, that "The Sun with Caput Algol [26 Taurus] in no aspect of a Fortune, or one posited in the 8th, the Dispositor of the Light of the time in opposition of Mars or in square, the Native will be Beheaded; if the Luminary culminate, his Body will be either wounded or torne to pieces whilst he is yet living; if Mars be at this time in Gemini or Pisces, his Hands or Feet will be cut off." Christian Astrology, page 649.

So when we look at predictive astrology, there are many traditional sources that indicate that the prominent prescence of Algol is problematic. But if we refer again to Quadripertitus this same source, which indicated Algol was problematic predictively says of Algol as a talisman that, "Its virtue is to impart mettle and boldness and to keep the [body] unharmed. And if anyone would enchant or bewitch him that beareth it, the spell reverteth or the sorcery doth return upon him that cast it." De Quindecim Stellis, page 28. So while negative in a natal or horary chart, Algol is a great protective talisman!

This resolves a problem that frequently arises with Algol talismans. People will see Algol talismans on the Renaissance Astrology website, google search them and come up with all sorts of terrible predictive indications. They then are very upset and frightened by Algol talismans, because "Algol is bad!" What they are missing is that both the problematic predictive and the powerful protective natures are so closely intertwined. Just like electricity Algol has great power but needs to be carefully and correctly used. If so used, Algol is the premier and most powerful celestial spirit and talisman for spiritual protection.

The Black Algol, White Algol and Red Algol Teaching

Black Algol
Black Algol

Right from the beginning of my astrological magic practice [circa 1998] I have been interested in fixed star talismans and of course, focused on the Behenian Fixed Stars found in our key source Hermes on the Fifteen Fixed Stars. I used the Tabula Variant manuscript which appeared in Joan Evans’ Magical Jewels of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance.

And obviously Algol figures prominently in our sources and because of its power as a protective talisman. I have made many Algol talismans and done many consecrations to and invocations of, Algol. Algol is very prominent on my Fixed Star Altar. If you follow this link you can see Algol right at the top in the middle and my beautiful Algol mirrors at bottom middle of the altar.

So over the years, Algol has been not only our most popular protection talisman, but in fact our most popular single talisman. One of the many clients happy with Algol was very skilled and knowledgeable practitioner of Caribbean magic. This mage had a family history of magic and divination and was particularly practiced in curse detection and protection, dealing with many different spirits. They repeatedly extolled the power of Algol, indicating that those that tried to curse or do malefic spiritual attacks and the spirits used, would cower before Algol.

So I had many conversations with this mage and eventually they told me how they had contacted Algol and received specific instructions for dealing with three manifestations of Algol: the Red Algol, the Black Algol and the White Algol. The Red Algol, they said, was far too crazy and uncontrolled to deal with and would wreck havoc. The Black Algol was to be used when the victim of the curse needed direct aggressive countering of the curse or evil spirit. Black Algol would not allow itself to be used for evil, but when justice and necessity called for it, Black Algol would take the evil that was thrown at the victim and send it back to the curser. Finally White Algol did not act aggressively, but instead passively as a strong shield against negativity and wall of protection against curses and spiritual attack.

So while the mage had received individual instructions for their practice from Algol, they shared with me this general information and the instructions that for those that wished to manifest the Black Algol and direct aggressive reflective attack, to use a black altar cloth and black candles for invocation and to request this direct action in consecration. For the White Algol, to use a white altar cloth and white candles and to ask for shielding and protection in invocation. Do not seek to invoke the Red Algol was their advice and my advice as well.

So I received this teaching from what I consider to be a key source, an experienced mage who themselves was taught by Algol. My sense is that most all traditional magical practice had their source in dreams, visions and direct communication with spirits and angels. Nevertheless, this direct communication is in accordance with the greater tradition and traditional sources. For example, the three Algols fit the trinitarian pattern of the Gorgons and of Greek goddess themselves, like Hekate, who very often appear in a triple guise. Similarly we have the example of the Buddhist bodhisattva Tara, who appears in multiple manifestations, each color coded, eg the Green, White, Red, Blue, etc, Taras.

Working with Black Algol or White Algol

Black Algol
Algol Talisman

You can learn how to create Algol talismans in the Astrological Magic Course and see all Currently Available Algol talismans as well as a direct link to our Bronze Algol Talismans.

My practice with Algol is simply an extension of my practice with the celestial spirits in general. My view is that there is an almost infinite number of spirits under the general aegis of any celestial factor, be it planet, fixed star, Mansion of the Moon, decan/face, etc. Thus there are many different ways to interact with each celestial factor and an infinite number of "interfaces". Since my approach is a devotional practice, I only interact with the angelic or archangelic level of celestial spirits.

Nevertheless, angels not not simply New Age sweetness and light. We might think of the archangel Michael, leader of the warrior host or the Angel of Death, forbidding but not evil. This is similar to Buddhist practice where spiritual beings have both peaceful and wrathful aspects. Wrathful entities, can be very useful, once converted to Buddhism they function as dharma protectors, like Mahakala in Tibetan Buddhism or Fudo Myo-O in Japanese Buddhism.

What the White Algol, Black Algol teaching allows us to do is hone and focus our approach to Algol to fit our situation. If we truly need and justice demands an aggressive response, we work with the Black Algol, recognizing that this is not the unbridled, out of control violence of a demon. For other situations, or if we do not ever wish to be aggressive, we can focus on the powerful shielding of the White Algol. With regard to Red Algol don't be like a drug addict who, when they hear of a fatal overdose, ask "how can I get some?" Either the White or Black Algol can be approached through our standard Bronze Algol Talismans.

Finally the key is to recognize that this is just one possible approach. No one can establish a universally "correct" objective view of Algol, but at the same time, there are many true approaches, along with an infinite number of ineffective or problematic approaches. If this way resonates for you, follow it as long as it continues as your path. If this approach does not appeal to you, that is perfectly fine as well, find your path! But just as I would be wrong to say this is the only approach for everyone, so too is someone wrong that says this approach is wrong for everyone.