Sunday, April 5, 2015

Meditations on Surgat

As I get closer to making my Surgat talisman I have been thinking quite a bit about this spirit. Here are a few of my thoughts.

Surgat, spirit of the Grimorium Verum.
Jake Stratton-Kent, in his book Geosophia vol. 2, aligns Surgat with the 25th Mansion of the Moon which begins at roughly 9 degrees Aquarius. This apparently follows attributions he has set up using the Kabbalistic Tree of Life as the outline with some astrological correspondences. I think there is great merit to his list of correspondences but it is my belief that perhaps Surgat is misattributed.

In the Grimoire of Pope Honorius Surgat is also called Aquiel. I don't think it is too far of a stretch to imagine this might indicate a relation to Aquila, the constellation called The Eagle. The stars in Aquila extend from the middle of Capricorn to just the first few degrees of Aquarius. A little far perhaps to match with JSK's attribution but really close. The major star in Aquila is Altair which these days sits at about 1 degree Aquarius. So far I take all this as confirmation that I'm on the right track; three occurrences of the Aqu- prefix. For astrological timing in works of Surgat I will use Altair as the indicator star. Altair falls directly in the middle of the 24th Mansion of the Moon.

Surgat Correspondences, part 1
1. the star Altair
2. the first degree of Aquarius
3. the Eagle, the constellation and by extension the mythic figure.
4. the element Air

Let's look at the mythic figure of the Eagle. In Classic Greek myth there are two prominent occurrences of the Eagle. First is in the story of Ganymede who was kidnapped by Zeus in the form of an Eagle. Ganymede became Zeus's water bearer and is commemorated in the constellation Aquarius. The second reference to the Eagle occurs in the imprisonment and punishment of Prometheus. Everyday the Eagle would eat Prometheus's liver as part of the punishment for giving the gift of Fire to humanity. In both of these cases the Eagle is an agent of imprisonment. This attribute supports Surgat's qualities as one who has providence over things locked or shut. Surgat is the only spirit in the Grimorium Verum described as dangerous. Perhaps it is this quality that makes him so dangerous.

Surgat Correspondences, part 2
5. the fox
6. Sunday
7. locks and keys

In Book 2 of the Grimorium Verum we have a spell using the auspices of Surgat called To Open Anything That is Shut or Locked. In this section we have a spell to enchant a lodestone with the power to open all locks. For my talisman I am taking this ability as more metaphoric than literal. At any rate, in the description of the spell we are given more correspondences.

Surgat Correspondences, part 3
8. lodestone
9. St. Andrew's cross (X)
10. the number 3
11. lead
12. the "lunar plant" and by extension The Moon

The glyph for The Moon also shows up in Surgat's sigil as do the slightly modified glyphs of Venus and Mars. It is a rather peculiar sigil. Let's analyze its elements.

At first glance this sigil looks a bit like a frowning face turned sideways, the eyes formed from the glyphs of Mars and Venus, the mouth formed by the glyph of The Moon. The "head" is formed by an ellipse with two lines on the left seeming to form an arrow and two more lines at the top forming a triangle. With the inclusion of the three planetary glyphs I can't help but see this ellipse as an astrological chart. The lines on the left forming the arrow indicate the direction the houses are counted and the direction of the planets as they travel around the circle of the represented zodiac. I'm not sure what to make of the triangle at the top of the ellipse. Perhaps it indicates the Midheaven. In the Grimorium Verum only Frimost and Surgat have explicit astrological glyphs in their sigils. The ellipse and arrow in Surgat's sigil suggests cycles; moving around a circle, beginning, traveling, and ending at the beginning. It could also indicate the span of a year or simply the passage of time.

I will continue these contemplations as I seek to work further with this spirit.

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