Alchemy, Saturn, Melancholy and Music

Marinas Astrological Journal: SATURN ♄ in Astrology

Saturn as Father Time

The melancholy humour when it is stirred up, burns and stirs up a madness conducing to knowledge and divination, especially if it is helped by any celestial influx, particularly of Saturn … By melancholy, says Aristotle, some men are made as it were divine, foretelling things to come, and some men are made poets. ~ Agrippa

Melancholy Tones by Day Of The Dead - Rebecca Litchfield, via Flickr

The contemplating intellect - insofar as it separates itself not only from things we perceive but even from those things which we commonly imagine and which we prove about human behaviour and insofar as it recollects itself in emotion, in intention and in life to supra-physical things - exposes itself somewhat to Saturn. To this faculty alone is Saturn propitious. For just as the Sun is hostile to nocturnal animals, but friendly to the diurnal, so Saturn is hostile to those people who are either leading publicly an ordinary life or even to those fleeing the company of the crowd but not laying aside their ordinary emotions. For Saturn has relinquished the ordinary life to Jupiter, but he claims for himself a life sequestered and divine. ~ Marsilio Ficino

Melancholie - Art by Anita Burnaz

Bringing Mercurial qualities to bear on Saturn could therefore be a way to access and free the potential for genius associated with Aquarius (which Saturn rules by night) and for Ficino there could be no more effective way of effecting and refining the heaviness of black bile, tempering it and harmonising it, than through invoking the airy spirit of music and song. Furthermore, in doing this, he was consciously identifying with the perennial wisdom of the ancient theologians:

''Hermes Trismegistus, Pythagoras and Plato tell us to calm and to cheer the dissonance of the sorrowful mind with the constant and harmonious lyre and song … I too (if I may compare the lowliest person with the greatest), frequently prove in myself how much the sweetness of the lyre and song avail against the bitterness of black bile.'' (Ficino)

Each planet will have a kind of music proper to it, which can be imitated in order to attract its qualities, for example the voices of Saturn are “slow, deep, harsh and plaintive”and the songs of Mercury “relaxed, gay, vigorous and complex.”

~ Angel Voss (Source) ~

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  • where there is music .... there is a dance to be experienced ......


    a repost from other threads  put into a ..... new dance ( so to speak )


    § S t e v i e W o n d e r - H i g h e r G r o u n d §



    Two-Faced  Janus1476379?profile=RESIZE_480x480



    hr ms


    ( from : The Arabic Hermes: From Pagan Sage to Prophet of Science (Oxford Studies in Late Antiquity)  )dec330278ec5b1f4f16a0c2ebe61341d.jpg?width=203&profile=RESIZE_710x§ Dj Spector Feat Laro - Till You Get Enough §



    from :  Sufi Dancing and Islamic Mysticism




    The Dancer is an apt symbol for the transfigured Fool, for dancing combines rhythm and spontaneity, the regular and the unpredictable. Thus dancing is creation, and in many mythologies a god or goddess dances the universe into existence (as the Kouretes danced Zeus into the world from the womb of Rhea, the Great Mother). So also constant dancing sustains the universe and, when the time comes, dances the cosmos into oblivion. (Nichols 351-2; Walker 132)


     In the dancer, spirit and instinct flow together; there is no opposition between them. This is why she is nude, to show that she is in her natural state and is truly following her inner nature. Nudity represents the absence of shame in the natural state, but is especially a symbol of truth ("the truth unveiled," cf. "Isis unveiled"), which manifests in 21.World. (Guiley & Place 124; Nichols 350) 


    As Pollack (I.124) has observed, the number of 21.World reveals that the dancer is the union of 2.Empress and 1.Magician, that is, of Aphrodite and Hermes. According to a well-known myth, Hermaphroditus was the son of Hermes and Aphrodite. The nymph Salmacis fell in love with him when he came to bathe in her pool. She grabbed him and, though he struggled to free himself, she would not let go, but prayed to Zeus that they would never be separated. In answer to her prayers, the two were united into a single being, the first hermaphrodite. The myth thus represents inseparable union granted as a gift of the gods. (SB&G 81-2)


    § Streamer & Stevie wonder -Superstition §



    In the Saturnalia, Macrobius says that January is dedicated to Janus as December is dedicated to Saturn, and so Janus is the new god who reigns at the end of the Saturnalia. He also says that Janus is two-faced because he is a fusion of Artemis and Apollo (i.e., Sun and Moon, Janus and Jana = Dianus and Diana); thus he corresponds to the alchemical hermaphrodite (cf. also 0.Idiot). Macrobius quotes Cicero (De Natura Deorum 2.27.67), who says Ianus (Janus) was originally called Eanus, which is derived from eundo (going), because Janus, who is the Universe, is always moving, whirling in a circle, like our dancer. This is the reason, he says, that the Phoenicians represent :


    Janus by the Ouroboros serpent.


    • An ouroboros serpent symbolizes eternity, and the pair of them in this trump reminds us that 21.World represents the final triumph, the Triumph of Eternity. The serpents represent the Life Force continually feeding on and nourishing itself. Thus Eliphas Levi (Histoire de la magie, 138) explains:
    Life is a serpent that incessantly creates and devours itself. One must ignore fear and plant one's foot firmly on its head. Hermes, by doubling it, opposes it to itself, and in eternal equilibrium makes of it the talisman of his power and the glory of his caduceus.



    (This is supported by modern etymologies, which derive Janus from Indo-European ia- from ei-, to go.) Macrobius also calls Janus the Doorkeeper of Heaven and Hell because he looks to the four quarters of the World (as in this trump). He quotes Gnaeus Domitus, who said,

    He it is who fashions all things and guides them; he it is who in the compass of the Heavens has joined together Water and Earth with Fire and Air, and it is this mighty power of the Heavens that has united two opposing forces.


    The World shows us the reborn child of 19.Angel, grown to maturity and proved by the balance of 20.Justice. In psychological terms, the archetypal Self has become fully humanized by its embodiment in an individual; in more traditional terms, the Spirit is embodied in Matter. This is symbolized by the trump's format: a circle, representing spirit, in a square, representing matter; the squaring of the circle is discussed in more depth below. (Nichols 350, 356)

    ....Here we have the alchemical Fixation, by which the Volatile Spirit is permanently solidified. This fixation, once achieved, is permanent; regression is impossible. Jung explains that at this stage one becomes permanently aware of the Self as an indestructible archetype, incorruptible and immortal. In other words, the individual unites with the Inner Divine: true enthusiasm (enthusiastikos, from entheos, filled with a god, possessed, inspired by a god). (Haitch 165; LSJ s.vv.; Nichols 350, 352)


    § Beats International - Dub Be Good To Me §




    According to Macrobius and Pliny the Elder, Janus, as two-faced solar god, measures the year, and so he shows 300 with his right hand and 65 with his left. Fortunately, we may describe this gesture with confidence: for 300 the tips of thumb and index finger of the right hand touch "in a caressing embrace" (Bede, De Temp. Rat., 1); the other fingers are extended. The left hand represents 65 by (1) bending the thumb in a right-angle against the palm, (2) curling the index finger around it, and (3) bending the middle finger to the joint of the palm (other fingers are extended). I will leave it to others to fully explain the esoteric significance of this gesture, though I will make a few observations. First note that when reduced to the Decad, 300 in the right hand represents Male (3+0+0 = 3) and 65 in the left represents Female (6+5 = 11, 1+1 = 2).

    • The 32 Paths to Wisdom (the number Thirty Two is the sum of the Paths and the Sephiroth) calls the Path of Tau (The Universe card or World card)



    Cassiodorus explains that the gesture for 60 represents self-control and reciprocity. The Pythagorean interpretation of 5 is the union of the male and female; they call it Androgeny and Marriage (see Fives in Minor Arcana). The 300 in the right hand is made with the same gesture as 30 in the left; Jerome says that this gesture refers to the union of husband and wife (the caressing embrace). Of course, 30 is supremely androgynous, since 30 = 5 X 6, the product of the two androgynous numbers (2 + 3, 2 X 3), corresponding to 19.Angel and 20.Justice. Since (Jerome again) the left hand is the present life and the right the life to come, the numbers show the preconditions in the present life to achieve the new life represented by 21.World. (See Williams & Williams and citations therein.)


    fyi :

     72 = 2^3 x 3^2.

    108 = 2 x 2 x 3 x 3 x 3

     21.World comprises the essences of the first seven trumps, for 0+1+2+3+4+5+6 = 21; they are the Fool, the Magician, the Empress and Emperor, the High Priestess and Priest, and the Mercurial spirit of Love, which unites them all.


    § R o l l i n g S t o n e s   -  M i s s Y o u   (Pied Piper 12 Inch Regroove)§


  • Study: Sad, lonely people more likely to be 'natural' social psychologists


    Social psychology researchers use extensive training and complex empirical tools to explore the roots of human behavior. However, a new study by Yale psychologists found a surprising group of people are particularly good at accurately assessing truths about human’s “social nature” without formal training or tools, they report March 15 in the journal Social Psychology.

    So who are the best amateur social psychologists?  Introverts prone to melancholy seem to be more astute at understanding how we behave in groups than their gregarious peers, the researchers found.

    It seems to be a case of sadder but wiser,” said Anton Gollwitzer, Yale psychologist and co-author of the study. “They don’t view the world through rose-colored glasses as jovial and extroverted people do.”

    Gollwitzer and co-author John Bargh asked more than 1,000 subjects questions about how people on average feel, think, and feel in soci... — phenomena that have been extensively studied by social psychologists. Some of the questions were: Do people work harder in groups or as individuals? Do people feel more responsible for their behavior in groups or as individuals? Does catharsis work: If I am angry, will taking out my hostilities on a stuffed doll make me feel better?

    Research has shown that, on average, people work harder individually than in groups, a concept known as social loafing, studies; that people feel less responsible in groups than as an individual, a phenomenon that helps explain horrors like genocide; and that, no, knocking the stuffing out of a doll is actually not cathartic.

    The psychologists then did a series of experiments to try to identify traits of those who accurately answered these questions. Not surprisingly, intelligence and wanting to engage with complex problems was a key predictor, the researchers said. But they also found that introverts tended to answer more accurately than extroverts, as did people with lower self-esteem and those who reported being more lonely.

    It could be that the melancholic, introverted people are spending more time observing human nature than those who are busy interacting with others, or they are more accurate at introspection because they have fewer motivational biases,” Gollwitzer said. “Either way, though, this demonstrates an unappreciated strength of introverts.”

    He stressed that individuals who scored high on tests about human nature do not possess the same knowledge and skills as trained social psychologists. However, he also noted that while “natural” social psychologists will not replace actual psychologists, they could be important players in the real world.

     “These ‘natural’ social psychologists, because they better understand social phenomena, may be able to interpret and even predict social changes in our society — maybe they are exactly what is missing from our current governance and positions of power,” he said.


    • Of Madness, and Divinations which are made when men are awake, and of the power of a Melancholy Humor, by which Spirits are sometimes induced into Men's Bodies. ( Chap. 60. Agrippa )
    Study: Sad, lonely people more likely to be ‘natural’ social psychologists
    Who are the best amateur social psychologists? Introverts prone to melancholy, according to a new study by Yale researchers.
    • Makes a lot of sense. I think the momentum of the extrovert inhibits accurate observation.

      I prefer the word melancholy to sad, and introverted to lonely. Personally I can identify with being almost always introverted and sometimes / regularly? melancholy, but I don't feel either sad or lonely. It's more a pervasive feeling of the impermanence of things which makes them feel acutely vulnerable and precious.


       Quote -  “These ‘natural’ social psychologists, because they better understand social phenomena, may be able to interpret and even predict social changes in our society — maybe they are exactly what is missing from our current governance and positions of power,” he said.


      I totally agree, but how to get such people into positions of influence? they are never likely to want them.

      • i am quite familiar with that feeling :)


  • 7e60b3bf637fa9310bf1da02464ae23f.jpg

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    • I Like Tom Waits, Noct. His song Martha always makes me cry, and my friend sings it beautifully. And I like Tom Trauberts Blues. He is one of the Kings of Melancholy. Him .....and Leonard Cohen being another one :)


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    • It looks beautiful....and melancholy.

      Sort of like the obliteration of the spermatazoa into the void of the ovum (is what occurred to me).....

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    • That's a fascinating and pleasant surprise.....Binah = Saturn. I've been looking around to read up on it...very interesting.

  • Culpeper says of the Melancholy temperament:

    Their colour is duskish, and swartish pale, their skin is rough and cold in feeling; they have very little or no hair on their bodies, and are long without beards, yea, sometimes beardless: the colour of their hair is duskish; as touching their conditions, they are naturally covetous, self-lovers, fearful with out cause; pusillanimous, solitary, careful, lumpish, seldom merry or laughing, stout, stubborn, ambitious, envious, fretful, obstinate in opinions, of deep cogitation, mistrustful, suspicious, vexed with dolours of the mind, and dreadful imaginations (as though they were infested with evil spirits) and are very spiteful, curious, majestical in behaviour, and retain their anger long; the vertue of concoction in them is very feeble, yet they have good appetite to their meat. Their Urine is palish and mean in substance, and they dream of fearful things, terrible visions and darkness.
    'Holy Melancholy' Neon
    However, one of the most important traits of a melancholic person is that of introspection - melancholics were seen as the thinkers and the scholars of the Renaissance. Hence, with melancholy comes curiosity and deep cogitation. It was understood that they were privy to a deep understanding of the workings of the world. Perhaps this is why they are "vexed with dolours of the mind". 

    Melancholy is therefore a cognitive temperament, but of the three traditional functions of the brain (judgement, imagination and memory), it solely rules the function that is most internalised and is the least expressive in quality, the memory: 

    Memory is seated in the hinder cell of the brain, it is the great register to the little world; and its office is to record things either done and past, or to be done. It is [in] quality cold and dry, and melancholick, and therefore generally melancholick men have the best memories, and [are] most tenacious in every way. It is under the dominion of Saturn, and is fortified by his influence, but purged by the luminaries. Culpeper
    Ghostly beautiful
    Saturn, as the "author of Solitariness" is often associated with hermits, the embodiment of introspection, who draw upon a wisdom gained through contemplation of life's experiences. To draw upon the symbolism of most Tarot books, hermits are depicted with a lighted lantern, and popularly used in literature for guiding lost or wayward travellers back to their path (despite their gruff manner). This analogy is apt for the melancholic temperament, encompassing both the positive and negative character traits. 
    “Melancholy characterizes those with a superb sense of the sublime,”  ~ Immanuel Kant
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