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Astro-Tarot Series

Arcanum 11: Neptune and the Enchantress

Elbert Benjamine

Taming the Beast by Taylor Patterson

Ideals are ruled by Neptune. They imply a use of the imagination. And no others can exercise their imaginations for weal [well-being] or for woe half so potently as those in whose birth charts the planet Neptune is unusually prominent. Such have the ability not merely to image things vividly in their own minds, but also possess an exceptional power to convey such images convincingly to the minds of others. By the power of mental images, so conceived as to give the proper suggestion and otherwise unreinforced, Neptune minds are able to manipulate the desires of those they contact and thus control their actions.

Uranus, which is prominent in the birth charts of all orators, as determined by The Brotherhood of Light in an analysis of the birth charts of jury lawyers and politicians of the speech making type whose hour of birth is known, sways people through the electromagnetic field of force such persons radiate from their high-tension nerve currents. These etheric energies invade the nervous systems of those in their presence, generating similar electric currents in them, which for the time being dominate their thoughts. More subtle methods may, or may not be used, but the chief avenue by which an individual of the Uranian type influences the thoughts and conduct of others is through magnetic control.

Pluto, when prominent in a birth chart, generates electrical energies of higher frequency and shorter wavelengths than either Uranus or Neptune. They are specially adapted to long distance transmission, or even to communication between the astral and the physical plane. But they rely on vigor and force to accomplish their result, rather than upon the infiltration of some image such as Neptune commonly employs. And all too often, whether between planes or merely between those on the earth, the demands of Pluto are accompanied by a threat. Too frequently there is the implication: “You do this, or else!”

Neptune Glyph

Neptune, however, operates in a very different manner. He conveys, either to the conscious mind or to the unconscious mind, an image which by its power of suggestion shall enlist the desire-energies of the unconscious mind and by diverting them toward the realization of this image, brings about that which has been decided. Neptune uses no violence and no display of force. It relies upon the quiet power of suggestion, which often is conveyed from one mind to another without the recipient being aware that his actions are being influenced.

The fifth house of the natural chart is the house of love affairs and pleasures and it is ruled by the sign Leo, symbolized among the constellations as a Lion. Thus the Lion became a universal symbol of desire and is so used repeatedly in the Bible. When the desire was spiritual the king of beasts was represented in his beneficial sense, as when Christ is termed a Lion of the tribe of Judah; but when the desire was gross, such as leads to destruction, the beast was shown antagonistic, as when the devil is mentioned as a roaring Lion.

When, therefore, Samson, in love with a girl, was met by a young lion which roared against him it is to be inferred, especially as his parents disapproved, that he was beset by passions which raged within. But as is set forth at considerable length, his life up to this time had been without blemish in thought or action, his mother being carefully instructed even before his birth. Thus was the young lion easily conquered and whatever his thoughts for the moment may have been, they were quickly vanquished by suggestive images of a more spiritual kind.

Whatever house of the birth chart Neptune occupies, the department of life thus ruled is in some manner dramatized; and dramatization is due chiefly to suggestive appeals to the imagination which enlist the desires and thus give rise to emotion. People who have Neptune in the house of business, for instance, have ability as promoters, because they can convey the images of hoped for results effectively to the minds of other people and enlist their desires, symbolized by the Lion of Arcanum 11, sufficiently to cause them to invest money.

The Enchantress

When the ancient masters of stellar science, recognizing this principle, which we now know to be mapped in a birth chart by the planet Neptune, decided to hand down some explanation of it to far distant posterity through the language of symbolical pictograph, to indicate the mildness of suggestions which have almost irresistible power, they pictured them as a maiden.

Neptune is the higher octave of Venus, the planet of love. Therefore, is the crown which the maiden wears surmounted by a vase, which is a symbol of the affections. And as Neptune tends to idealize and to bring a renunciation of the lower aspects of sex, this vase of the affections is still further crowned by eagles to indicate the trend which Neptune imparts toward spiritualizing love.


The eagles are two in number, to indicate the longing which a prominent Neptune stimulates, especially when in the house of love or the house of marriage, for an ideal mate. These inner longings which Neptune gives when his influence is felt in reference to affectional matters, often are not fortunate in this practical workaday world; for such inner promptings give a feeling that somewhere is a true spiritual mate and could he be found that soul would respond to soul in ecstatic harmony and quite apart from expressions which are physical.

Yet we live in a physical world and if we are to be successful in it we must adjust ourselves to its requirements. But regarding those things in our lives which Neptune by its house position in our chart of birth rules, we are apt to live in an imaginary and ideal world. If Neptune is in the house of marriage, for instance, we endow the partner-to-be with all the attributes which we desire he should possess, we build an ideal image and worship at its shrine. And because we have expected so much our disappointment is proportionally greater when harsh reality intrudes and we find that which we had deemed to be perfect, full of imperfections.

The world of physical reality, with its sharp corners and jarring contacts, often becomes too painful to the supersensitive nerves of those with Neptune unusually prominent in their birth charts. Weary of the conflict to adjust themselves to conditions which to them are full of pain, they flee from that which has become so disagreeable. The typical introvert always has Neptune prominent in his chart of birth. And when the mental planets also are afflicted such an individual in his flight from reality may suffer a nervous breakdown, develop some peculiar phobia, or even live so completely in a world of his own creation that he becomes quite helpless and a burden on society.

Those who become nuns and monks, who renounce the world and its temptations for what they deem to be a spiritual life, usually have a prominent birth chart Neptune. Not only must one have ideals to become a saint, but one must, through the suggestive power of those ideals, strongly influence the lives of many others.

Line of Least Resistence

Progressed aspects to Neptune, even those considered harmonious, frequently bring some renunciation or separation. The individual, seeking some more ideal condition, or grown tired of the sensual and gross, leaves the environment he previously has occupied. Perhaps he separates from old-time friends, renounces love in its more physical aspects, retires from business or makes something of a hermit of himself. It is seldom that a strong progressed aspect to Neptune passes without some renunciation. The new energy received by the thought-cells within his unconscious mind mapped by Neptune give them greater activity and they express it through increasing the desires for that which is Utopian in reference to the things which Neptune rules in the chart. To realize that which the individual at the time believes to be more ideal he must relinquish less satisfactory things which he already has.

When the desire-energies are enlisted in a cause, as they are the motive force behind all organic activity, action for the cause necessarily follows. And nothing seems so potent to divert desire-energies into a decided-upon-channel as properly applied suggestions. The Lion pictured in Arcanum 11 is the symbol of desires. And the maiden in this tarot picture called The Enchantress is portrayed as opening and closing without effort, with her hands, the jaws of this angry lion. Thus, did those who designed the picture convey the information to those willing to read that the power of Neptune, working through suggestion, lies in the proper manipulation of desires.

Let us consider this power in the light of recent investigations; for we now know that the desires of the thought-cells and thought organizations within the astral body are not merely the source of our three-dimensional behavior, but also of those four-dimensional activities which attract events into the life. To the extent they are energetic do they attract the attention of the unconscious mind and to the extent the attention is thus called to those images by which they can be realized, are their energies released in that direction.

For instance, a sensation arriving from the external environment, an emotion released by a thought, a statement received as a suggestion, associates with certain thought-groups already in the astral body, giving them temporarily new energy, and temporarily thus increasing the power of the desires in the group to such an extent that action, both three- dimensional and four-dimensional, results. That is, whatever desire is temporarily dominant determines what images shall be presented to the attention. Desires which at the time have less energy, perhaps through not connecting up with some external source such as an objective thought or visual image, receive proportionately less attention.

Now let us consider that throughout its biological past the unconscious mind has been conditioned, or trained, to release desire energy in the direction of the image or thought which was the focus of its attention. In fact, attention is the focusing of desire energies. To the extent past associations permit the thought-cells and thought organizations within the astral body to be connected up with the image then present, are there desire energies temporarily diverted into an attempt to fulfill that image.

Thus it is that whatever image is the subject of attention, both the three- dimensional activities and the four-dimensional activities tend in its direction. They strive for movement to make the picture a reality, whatever it may be, because throughout all its past the soul has given orders to its various parts and to its physical organs and functions by using the language of such pictures.

Few things are of greater importance than that which The Enchantress design teaches, not only in the application of suggestion but in the use of thought for any purpose: to realize that to the extent a given image is able to attract the attention of the unconscious mind, is there three-dimensional and four-dimensional movement toward that image.


The desire energies are diverted into the image irrespective of whether it is something beneficial or destructive. It is not for the thought-cells and thought groups of the unconscious mind to discuss the merits of the matter. They have been trained to release their energies in the direction of whatever was before the attention, and this they do. Only to the extent other and contrary desires are able to capture some portion of the attention of the unconscious mind are they able to release their energies in activity. But if they are strong, they keep continually tugging to get some share of the attention and thus enough supplementary energy to enable them to work.

Resemblance closely associates opposite images. Black is thus associated with white, sweet with sour, pain with pleasure, moving forward with running away. So that unless a suggestion is applied with some consideration for the manner in which the unconscious mind already has been conditioned or trained, instead of bringing the suggested image or course of activity, to the attention, the previous associations may readily bring before the attention the opposite image. Suggested bravery thus may bring to the attention of the unconscious mind the image of cowardly actions that have been taken in the past and still further condition the individual in the direction of cowardice. Suggested health may bring before the attention of the unconscious mind the various images of illness in the past and Condition the individual still further in the direction of illness.

Therefore, in the application of suggestion, that it may not have the opposite effect from that intended, a technique must be employed that will insure that the attention is directed to the proper image. This technique should be such that little conflict is developed. And it should as completely as possible hold the image vividly and persistently before the attention of the unconscious mind. It is because people with Neptune prominent in their birth charts see such images more vividly than other people do that they respond more readily to suggestion, and have the power to influence others through the mental pictures they encourage.

The most satisfactory condition for getting the complete and undivided attention of the unconscious mind to an image or idea is when, through some process, the objective mind is placed in a state of quiescence so that the reasoning process is stopped. Reasoning brings a succession of images, the process requiring a weighing and comparing of different viewpoints. To the extent therefore, that the critical faculties are thus active, is the attention moved from one image to another.

Furthermore, in reasoning, the energies of the unconscious mind – the desire-energies of the thought-cells and stellar organization pictured by the Lion whose mouth the maid in Arcanum 11 manipulates – are connected by energies with the brain cells and flow strongly outward. This outward flowing of the energies, commonly called being positive, is unfavorable for permitting any image to impress itself upon the thought organization.

That is, when the energies are flowing strongly outward, as they tend to do in objective thinking, that activity hinders the reception of a thought or image by the unconscious mind. But when the objective mind is relaxed, the thought or image meets no such outward energy. The person then is said to be in a negative state, and the image or thought, meeting no resistance is able strongly to impress the unconscious mind. Thus it attracts a large amount of the unconscious attention.

It is not necessary that a person should be asleep or hypnotized to be open to suggestions. The hypnotist gives his commands, once his subject is asleep, in a positive and forceful tone of voice. And because they are thus positive and forceful, they the more surely register and attract the attention of the unconscious mind. Yet when a person speaks to himself in such a forceful manner he is almost sure to be exercising his objective mind. That is, his energies are radiating outward, and he is not in a state of reception.

Instead of being so vigorous, if the individual will relax and permit himself to become drowsy, or at least in a dreamy state of consciousness which is on the borderline of sleep, and repeat the suggestion to himself in a droning sing-song voice, or think it over and over with barely enough energy to keep the thought present and thinking of nothing else in particular just let the mind drift, he will be using the best method to cause the suggestion properly to register.

At night, just before going to sleep, while in that state when objective thought has almost entirely ceased, or in the morning while between the sleeping and the fully awakened state, is commonly the most convenient time to attain this negative condition in which the unconscious mind is most receptive to suggestion. As long as thoughts about the day’s work flow through the mind, or as soon as they commence in the morning after waking, the energies are radiating outward and the receptivity to that extent is hindered.

Clinics where suggestion is employed therapeutically have found that suggestion commonly can be applied quite as effectively without inducing the hypnotic sleep. And by observing the necessary conditions, such as avoiding statements that set up conflicts or such as encourage an image which is the opposite of the effect sought, and by applying the suggestion while the mind is free from radiating thoughts but instead is on the borderline toward the sleeping state, the individual can apply suggestion to himself quite as effectively as it can be applied by another.

Suggestion, to which Neptune people are peculiarly susceptible, and which they also most effectively can apply, gains its force through the age-old habit of the unconscious mind to divert as many desire-energies – symbolized by the Lion in the picture – as possible into the performance of the act, or into the establishing of the condition, which is held before the attention.

To the extent other images or desires claim the attention of the unconscious mind is energy drained from the one image into them. Thus the proper application of suggestion requires a technique in which the image decided upon is presented to the unconscious mind without connecting up, or bringing to the attention, images or desires which are opposed to its realization. The more completely the image is able to dominate the attention of the unconscious mind, the more desire-energy from non- opposing thought groups is made available for its use. Such are the teachings, set forth in a modern language, which the ancient sages sought to depict in reference to Neptune, by The Enchantress who so easily makes the Lion do her bidding.

(This concludes part 12 of 23)

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