And now we move on to the heptagram , also referred to as the Septagram. Again, this isn’t a symbol of Witchcraft persay but it is an image that the modern practitioner may encounter on their journey and I decided that I wanted to include it as an opportunity to research something a little outside my comfort zone. As a hinted at last week my only use of the heptagram has been in relation to planetary magic, which I will cover here, but there are other contexts for both the acute and obtuse heptagrams which the reader may be interested in.
Seven is a magical number; there are seven days of the week, seven colours within white light, seven notes in the scale and seven deathless stars in the night sky. Modern technology and knowledge of the solar system makes it hard for the neophyte to come to terms with the ancient concept of the order of the heavens. Where as we know there to be nine planets (I refuse to demote dear Pluto) the ancient could only observe what they could see with the naked eye which were Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. They also included the Sun and Moon in their observable Universe? Giving the seven classical planets of the Sumerians, Babylonians, Greeks and pretty much any ancient civilisation that looked up at wondered.
These seven planets became associated with God’s and Goddess, notes, colours and eventually the days of the week and because important in western occultism which makes use astrological correspondences.
Some modern occultist use the heptagram to work with planetary energies in preference to the Hexagram. There are a variety of differ styles of ritual so for reference I’ve picked just two to give as an example here. Feel free to Google more.
Just as the Unicursal hexagram can be used to represent the balance between all seven planets or the four classical elements around a balanced Sun and Moon, the heptagram can be used in the same fashion. The process of planetary ritual is the process of creating planetary balance but in addition to balancing the planetary energies the heptagram can also be used to represent the seven (yes I said seven) directions. That may sound stranger than it actually is as the drawing together of the cardinal directions of North, South, East, West and the spiritual directions of Above, Below and Within brings together a number of practices and beliefs found within modern Witchcraft and occultism. Usually the four classical elements are used to represent the directions of North, South, East and West whilst the Spirit represents the concept of Above, the Body comes to stand for Below and the Soul represents the realm of Within, as in the image below.
As with the pentagram direction is important. With three points upward the heptagram represents the spirit above physical matters. Inverting the image inverts the meaning, placing the physical above spiritual matters.
Days of the Week
The heptagram can also represent the seven days of the week. In Judeo-Christian context, it comes to represent the seven days of creation and by extension the complete nature of the Universe. In a Pagan context this becomes becomes an extension of planetary associations.
In all of this either the acute or obtuse heptagram can be used but the acute heptagram has another association within modern paganism.
Elven Star and the Otherkin
The acute heptagram is sometimes called the Elven Star and has been widely adopted by the Otherkin – people who believe they are supernatural beings such as elves, faeries or dragons (and trapped in human bodies. It is also used by various Faerie traditions to represent the seven principle powers/energies within the tradition as well as provided a guide to communicating with the beings of power, and their world, in this tradition. Sparting from the top the Faerie Star, as it is also called, represents
- Forest (or Wood)
- Connection (or Spirit)
As a gateway to the Faerie Realm the seven points, or Rays, represent the seven aspects of Higher Self which a practitioner needs to achieve in order to communication. These are;
1st point – Power, Personal Will and Determination
2nd point – Unconditional Love, Wisdom and Growth
3rd point – Knowledge and Intelligence
4th point – Harmony and Tranquility
5th point – Powers of Mind and Science
6th point – Devotion and Honesty
7th point – Magic
Enochian Angel Magic
Heptagrams and heptagons are central to the Sigillum Dei Aemeth (or Sigil of Aemeth) used by John Dee in his work with scryer Edward Kelly. The number seven appears strongly through the system of Enochian angel magic, but this is most evident in the Sigillum Dei Aemeth, which was inscribed on wax tables and placed under the four corners of the table and the shew stone itself in order to protect the working by invoking the name and TRUTH of God.