The Planets in Occult and Hermetic Philosophy

The study of the planets has long been intertwined with the mysteries of the occult and Hermetic philosophy. These traditions, arising from ancient Egyptian, Greek, and later Renaissance sources, posit that the macrocosm (the universe) is reflected in the microcosm (the individual), and vice versa. The movements and characteristics of the planets were believed to be symbolic of deeper spiritual truths and energies that influence the human psyche and the world at large.

Ancient astrology has its roots in the Babylonian, Egyptian, and Greco-Roman traditions, among others. This knowledge evolved over millennia, integrating itself with other esoteric disciplines like the occult. Here’s a breakdown of what each planet represents in these esoteric teachings:

1. Mercury:

  • Occult Significance: Associated with communication, intellect, and travel.
  • Hermetic Connection: Mercury is linked to the Greek god Hermes, the messenger of the gods. Hermes Trismegistus, a legendary sage often associated with the origins of Hermeticism, is said to be a fusion of the Greek Hermes and the Egyptian Thoth, both deities of wisdom and writing.
  • Effects: Rules communication, travel, intellect, and thought processes. When afflicted, it can cause misunderstandings, travel delays, or intellectual confusion.
  • Occult Remedies: Employing herbs like lavender or wearing gemstones like agate can help. Chanting mantras or invocations dedicated to Hermes or Thoth can also bring clarity and protection.

2. Venus:

  • Occult Significance: Symbolizes love, beauty, art, and attraction.
  • Hermetic Connection: Venus embodies the principle of attraction and unity in the universe, reflecting the Hermetic principle: “As above, so below.”
  • Effects: Governs love, beauty, and harmony. An afflicted Venus may lead to relationship issues or lack of self-worth.
  • Occult Remedies: Rose quartz or emerald gemstones, rose incense, or working with the goddess Aphrodite in ritual can help restore balance and attract love.

3. Mars:

  • Occult Significance: Represents drive, aggression, and courage.
  • Hermetic Connection: Mars embodies the principle of dynamic force and the idea that action in the material world is a reflection of spiritual battles within.
  • Effects: Drives ambition, energy, and courage. When negatively aspected, it can incite unnecessary conflicts or impulsiveness.
  • Occult Remedies: Wearing red coral or working with iron in rituals can balance Mars energy. Invoking the god Ares or Mars can also lend courage and clarity in action.

4. Jupiter:

  • Occult Significance: The planet of expansion, abundance, and wisdom.
  • Hermetic Connection: Jupiter represents the expansive force of the universe and the spiritual blessings that come from aligning with divine wisdom.
  • Effects: Bringer of expansion, wisdom, and prosperity. An afflicted Jupiter might lead to overindulgence or missed opportunities.
  • Occult Remedies: Wearing yellow sapphire or burning frankincense can amplify Jupiter’s positive energies. Study and meditation on sacred texts can also align one with Jupiter’s wisdom.

5. Saturn:

  • Occult Significance: Symbolizes boundaries, limitations, discipline, and time.
  • Effects: Represents discipline, time, and karma. Challenges from Saturn often manifest as delays, restrictions, or heavy responsibilities.
  • Occult Remedies: Wearing blue sapphire or incorporating lead in rituals can assist in managing Saturn’s challenges. Invoking the deity Chronos or working with the archetype of the wise old man can aid in understanding Saturn’s lessons.

6. Sun:

  • Occult Significance: Represents the self, vitality, and the core essence of being.
  • Hermetic Connection: The Sun stands for the divine spark within each individual and the journey toward enlightenment.
  • Effects: Governs vitality, ego, and the core self. Challenges related to the Sun might involve issues of identity, health, or self-expression.
  • Occult Remedies: Gold, sunstone, and sun rituals during dawn can enhance Sun energies. Working with solar deities like Ra or Apollo can bring illumination.

7. Moon:

  • Occult Significance: Linked to emotions, intuition, and the subconscious mind.
  • Hermetic Connection: The Moon mirrors the mysteries of the inner world and the unconscious, reflecting the Hermetic principle of the correspondence between the inner and the outer worlds.
  • Effects: Influences emotions, moods, and intuition. An afflicted Moon might lead to mood swings, emotional sensitivity, or confusion.
  • Occult Remedies: Silver, moonstone, or rituals during the full moon can balance lunar energies. Working with lunar deities like Artemis or Isis can bring emotional healing.

8. Uranus:

  • Occult Significance: Symbolizes innovation, rebellion, and sudden insights.
  • Hermetic Connection: Uranus disrupts and brings forth new ways of thinking, echoing the Hermetic emphasis on progressive revelation and evolution of thought.
  • Effects: Rules innovation, change, and rebellion. Challenges might involve unexpected upheavals or restlessness.
  • Occult Remedies: Aquamarine or zircon can help stabilize Uranian energies. Meditation on the sky or the stars can bring insights and clarity during tumultuous times.

9. Neptune:

  • Occult Significance: Represents dreams, illusions, and spiritual visions.
  • Hermetic Connection: Neptune delves into the depths of the collective unconscious and the mysteries beyond the veil, similar to the Hermetic pursuit of hidden truths.
  • Effects: Governs dreams, intuition, and spiritual connections. An afflicted Neptune can lead to illusions, deceptions, or loss of boundaries.
  • Occult Remedies: Seashells, sea salt, or rituals near water can enhance Neptune’s positive attributes. Invoking sea gods like Poseidon can also offer protection.

10. Pluto:

  • Occult Significance: Associated with transformation, rebirth, and the unseen forces of the underworld.
  • Hermetic Connection: Pluto’s transformative energy aligns with the alchemical processes in Hermetic philosophy, which seek to transmute base materials into spiritual gold.
  • Effects: Symbolizes transformation, rebirth, and deep subconscious forces. Challenges often involve deep-seated fears, power struggles, or intense transformations.
  • Occult Remedies: Obsidian or garnet can help navigate Pluto’s intense energies. Underworld deities like Hades or Persephone can be invoked for guidance during periods of profound change.



In both the occult and Hermetic philosophy, the planets are more than just celestial bodies; they are archetypal symbols carrying profound spiritual messages. By understanding their significance, practitioners believe they can gain insight into the interconnectedness of the universe and their place within it.

In ancient astrology, the planets were often viewed as gods or cosmic forces influencing human affairs. The occult provided rituals, symbols, and remedies to align or mitigate these planetary energies, offering a bridge between the heavens and Earth.

In the intricate tapestry of the cosmos, the planets, as understood by occult and Hermetic traditions, exert their pull on the human psyche, weaving patterns of influence that shape our lives. These celestial bodies, while seemingly distant, resonate within the very core of our being, reflecting the ancient Hermetic adage, “As above, so below.” Their energies, whether harmonious or challenging, are believed to guide our emotions, thoughts, and actions.

However, the wisdom of these esoteric traditions also suggests that while these celestial forces are powerful, they are not deterministic. The true alchemist, versed in the mysteries of the universe, recognizes these planetary influences but does not become enslaved by them. Through introspection, ritual, and harnessing the arcane arts, they navigate the celestial currents, transforming challenges into opportunities.

In essence, while the planets play their cosmic dance and exert their gravitational and mystical pulls, it is the empowered individual who, with wisdom and will, rises above these influences. By doing so, they embody the true spirit of alchemy, transmuting the lead of external forces into the gold of inner mastery. In this transformative journey, the individual not only understands the workings of the universe but also realizes their sovereign place within it, proving that the real alchemy lies in transcending the planetary pull and charting one’s own celestial course.

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