Pleiades - The Lamp of Aladdin

by Andrew J. Bevan, QHP, DMS Astrol. (c) 2008

Pleiades - The Lamp of Aladdin

- posted at 16 Oct 2008

Having worked with charts and plotted the fixed stars for a couple of decades, my understanding of their effects has gradually grown from reading the teachings passed on by others to collecting my own personal notes on how the certain stars appeared to perform in practice. I have a list of personal favourites and the cluster of stars called the Pleiades, presently in the 30th degree of Taurus, was an early-comer to list of objects to be held under observation. There is something Royal and Majestic about the Pleiades, but the first thing I read was that the Pleiades, like any other cluster of nebulae, could be bad for the eyesight! I would like to introduce the concept of the Pleiades representing the 'Lamp of Aladdin' and I am sure the image will easily capture the imagination of any observer spotting the Pleiades in the Sky. The cluster appears like a tiny version of the ’Big Dipper’, so imagine something small, something with a handle, like a tiny lamp. It’s magical. Rub it or wipe it – and out pops a genie ready to grant your wishes, and whatever the genie performs, you’ll be rubbing those eyes again to believe whatever it is you see.

Goldstein-Jacobsen refered to Pleiades as the ’Weeping Sisters’, so that ’any planet or angle in this place would denote something to weep about.’ That’s interesting, because the practice of weeping can and will effect the eyesight and leave you in a haze in an intermediate context. But the aspect of weeping is not necessarily a negative. Tears may represent mourning or grief, but they can also be an expression of joy and admiration of beauty. Tears represent an emotional release that has an effect of embrace, consilidation and healing. In our moment of quietness and listening to the spirit it is custom to light either a lamp or a candle.

My early notes on Pleiades expanded upon the idea of anything that wept or showed tears. In association with Venus I found that this could represent grapes, which actually looks like a bundle of tears. And if you are stuck for gift ideas of what to take to someone who is feeling down in the dumps, you might want to take them a bunch of grapes. Grapes are like a token of reconciliation, forgiveness and comfort. You wine and shead a tear, or you take the tear, concealed in the grape, and make wine. Bacchus, the god of wine, is the god of forgiveness. Or in another context, Jesus, called the winebribber, who is to have made wine out of water, not only forgives our sins but is considered, if not a genie, then certainly a miracle-maker.

In astro-meteorology Pleiades is associated with moisture, raindrops and rain. The name Pleiades comes from the Greek and means ‘the pigeons’. While pigeons may by some be considered as rather humble among birds it is equally true that that have been used for sending messages. Ebertin refers to the Pleiades as 'the clucking hen'. Something to do with the size but multitude of raindrops, the blessing of the grape and the humbleness of the pigeon and clucking hen, this caused me to draw an association between Pleiades and penny farthings. Or the smallest unit of currency held in any country. If it isn’t raining pennies from heaven, it may be raining raindrops, which is a symbol of not only sorrow and mourning, but also forgiveness. You bless a penny. I recall a full moon appearing with Pleiades when the Norwegains decided to withdraw their smallest coin unit, the 10 öre, equivalent to the penny, from public circulation. Among fish in the sea I think that the Pleaides would signify the herring.

When combining Jupiter with Pleiades I found myself drawing associations with trees that wept – like a weeping willow or a weeping birch. I had a horary where the location of the querent was described by Jupiter conjunct Pleiades and the querent had a magnificent birch that wept right outside his parlor window. Anything that weeps must be considered as either a reservoir or source of water, so with the same client I suggested that a spring of water would be close at hand, which the person confirmed to be perfectly true.

Most sources seem to quote Ptolemy and say that the Pleiades represent a combination of the natures of the Moon and Mars, but my edition of Tetrabiblos says that the Pleiades have a temperature like that of the Moon and Jupiter, which is a view that Bearnette Bradly appears to agree with. I think there is an intresting story and qualitative difference relating to the nearby influence of the fixed star Algol. Algol is probably the star that has lowest repute in the whole zodiac. She is a variable star and a propper witch and spellbinder, you never know quite where you have got her. Algol is like the 13th Fairy Godmother in the tale of Sleeping Beauty. Due to a state of jealosy and vermin she will trick and deceive you and then put you to sleep. Algol deals with fascination, enchantment and incapcitation. With Algol you loose your head or ability to act. Pleiades, on the other hand, is like the genie in the lamp that has the ability to perform wonders that will amaze you and fill you with awe. This is the true blessing of your Fairy Godmother, but it is best that you get back home on the right side of midnight and do not exceed nature’s blassings.

Recently I have noticed how several of my clients with Pleaides prominent in their chart have been closely connected to the oil industry. Their tasks may either be administrative or relate to the science and research of the utilization of the oil wells and reservior resources. Oil is not only one of the most important and magical resources of modern civilisation, it is also simple and most basic fuel that is contained and burns within an Oil lamp, Aladdin’s Lamp. Rub the Lamp and you will be rubbing your eyes. Some of the blessings and virtues of Pleiades may be gather from its angular relationship to the fixed star Regulus, but to stick with myth, Pleiades is like the 12th Fairy Godmother that comes after the Witch in the fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty and put things right again. The Princess is not dead, only sleeping and the kiss of a Prince, or lighter, is the magic that will ignite her and bring her back to life, light and beauty.

I do feel that there is something in Mankind that yearns towards Pleiades. I don’t find this described in astrology books, but I do find the star to conceal messages of beauty, awe and wonder. Rub the lamp and set free the Genius – I propose that the Lamp of Aladdin needs to be curbed or requires some act of wisdom but has the potential of elevating Mankind and is a blessing when cultivated for the correct purposes.

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