Over the next few weeks, I’m going to be doling out information on the planets. I know a lot of people have abandoned the concept of planetary magic. There are a few of us left. Some folks are involved in (or were at one time) heavy “High Magick,” or Ceremonial Magick. There are also those who use planetary concepts in their own systems, amalgamated from a variety of sources.
But it seems like a lot of Witches either don’t use planetary magic anymore, or they just don’t talk about using planetary magic. Either way, for those of you who are interested in the use of planets and their virtues in your own spellcraft, I’m going to post on it over the next few weeks.
There is some distinct advantage that I’ve discovered in the use of planets over the years. Sure, I might have to wait for an auspicious time for a working. But, truth be told, I’ve gotten most of my best, most obvious and most fulfilling results when using the planets and planetary timing as one of the factors of my rites and spells.
So in this introductory post, let’s understand that the seven classical planets are the only ones that we’ll be talking about. It isn’t that I haven’t learned to apply other energies, such as those of Neptune (which is not one of the classical seven), but that these are the most accessible in our workings.
The seven classical planets, as you might already know, are:
- the Sun
- the Moon
As you might be able to tell, the seven classical planets are related to the seven days of the week. They were named by the Romans after their Latin equivalents.
- Sunday = Solaris (Sun)
- Monday = Luna (Moon)
- Tuesday = Martis (Mars)
- Wednesday = Mercurii (Mercury)
- Thursday = Jovis (Jupiter)
- Friday = Veneris (Venus)
- Saturday = Saturni (Saturn)
The planetary days and hours are one way to time your spellwork for good results. Each day of the week begins at sunrise with the planet for which it is named. The planetary hours aren’t exactly hours – they’re usually right around 3 or 4 minutes shy of a full 60 minutes. So the hour of Mars might be 10:56pm to 11:53pm, or the hour of the Sun might be 6:30am to 7:27am, and so on.
They’re calculated in a specific order, called the “Chaldean Order of the Planets.” In this particular order, they run like this:
So if it were a Sunday, and sunrise was at 7:35am, then the daylight planetary hours would look something like this:
- Sun – 7:35 am to 8:37 am
- Venus – 8:37 am to 9:40 am
- Mercury – 9:40 am to 10:42 am
- Moon – 10:42 am to 11:44 am
- Saturn – 11:44 am to 12:46 pm
- Jupiter – 12:46 pm to 1:49 pm
- Mars – 1:49 pm to 2:51 pm
Then we’d start over with first planet mentioned (the Sun) and run until the 12th hour. At the ending time of the 12th hour (the 12th planet in the list) would be the approximate time of sunset.
I sometimes find it confusing to calculate the planetary hours for myself. So instead, I use an app on my Android smartphone. The app I use is called “Planetary Times” by thereisonlywe. You can get it on the Google Play Store for free. I think there’s also an iPhone version, but don’t quote me on that.
There’s also a good website where you can get planetary hours calculated for you. That website is: http://www.lunarium.co.uk/planets/hours.jsp — be sure that you change the location in the black bar at the very top, as it works by location-specific data.
Next planetary post, I’ll start talking about virtues (areas of influence), correspondences and some useful spell ideas.