Regulus – Watcher of the North

The Sun (ruler), Leo and lunar mansions – Persia 17th c.

Regulus is perhaps the best-known of the Watchers. He is of the nature of Mars and Jupiter and is Guardian of the North. Regulus provides success if revenge is avoided. The success must be pure. maintaining power without ever resorting to revenge is, of course, a great challenge. Still, there is a gentleness in this powerful lion and it comes as no surprise that the healing angel finds his place, here in the North. Jupiter and Mars can be read as Mercy and Severity, the essential symbols of the Pharaohs as rulers was the crook (heka) and the flail or flabellum (nekhakha). A good King needs to know when to use one or the other for the sake of the Kingdom. I, therefore, find the following passage from Manilius to be exceptionally jaundiced:

“Who can doubt the nature of the monstrous Lion, and the pursuits he prescribes for those born beneath his sign? The lion ever devises fresh fights and fresh warfare on animals and lives on spoil and pillaging of flocks. The sons of the Lion are filled with the urge to adorn their proud portals with pelts and to hang up on their walls the captured prey, to bring the peace of terror to the woods, and to live upon plunder. There are those whose like bent is not checked by the city-gates, but they swagger about in the heart of the capital with droves of beasts; they display mangled limbs at the shop-front, slaughter to meet the demands of luxury, and count it gain to kill. Their temper is equally prone to fitful wrath and ready withdrawal, and guileless are the sentiments of their honest hearts” [Astronomica, Manilius, 1st century AD, p.237.]

Venant – Raphael The Healing Archangel (Regulus) Watcher of the North.

Nevertheless, Manilius’ list of the pitfalls of avarice, wrath and their fellow demons should be required reading for those who grasp for power. The good King or Queen is a healer – avoiding needless conflict and undue suffering, acting for the greater good.. This is the essence of nobility.

The North as a direction is associated with wisdom as well as achievement. in a wide variety of cultures. These are decidedly 1oth House themes. The ability to excel, to show mercy and possessing of the ability to communicate with and lead others, to recognize the special skill of those around him are all marks of nobility. The royal stars reach lofty heights and falling from them rarely ends well,

The real and imagined qualities of lions led to associations with kingship, in concert with the Sun, from earliest times and this was the case in parts of the world that had no actual lions. The leonine reputation as the king of the jungle combined with a mane evocative of the Sun produced an archetypal image adopted by Kings and Emperors to adopt leonine titles and iconography.

 

Ancient Persian Talisman – Lion and Sun

Fomalhaut – Watcher of the South

According to Ptolemy, Fomalhaut, in Piscis Australis and Watcher of the South, is of the nature of Venus and Mercury. It is generally a fortunate star and indeed very powerful and yet to cause “malevolence of sublime scope and character, and change from a material to a spiritual form of expression. Cardan stated that together with the stars rising with 12 Gemini it gives an immortal name.” [Robson*, p.165-166.]

The name Fomalhaut comes from the Arabic meaning Fish’s Mouth, which is how Ptolemy described it Fomalhaut is a very bright star among dim ones This makes it easy to see, but the constellation isn’t a great deal of help in finding it. In the heavens, the fish can be seen drinking the water flowing from the jar of Aquarius. Other stories credit the stellar fish swallowing the waters of the great deluge, thus saving the world. The Fish is interpreted as a saviour in several traditions, including Hinduism and one of the main manifestations of Vishnu is as the Cosmic Fish.

According to the brief account of Eratosthenes, the Syrian fertility goddess Derceto (the Greek name for Atargatis) is supposed to have fallen into a lake at Bambyce near the Euphrates river in Syria and was saved by a large fish. Hyginus says, in a repetition of his note on Pisces, that as a result of this the Syrians do not eat fish, but rather they worship the images of fish as gods. See Ian Ridpath Star Tales and my own article on the origins of Pisces entitled “Ikhthus Unchained.”

Canopus, alongside Achernar and Fomalhaut, which are corresponding stars in Eridanus and Piscis Australis, made up the Tre Facelle of Dante’s Purgatory, symbolizing Faith, Hope, and Charity:

“When the Southern Fish rises into the heavens, leaving its native waters for a foreign element, whoever at this hour takes hold of life will spend his years about sea-shore and river-bank he will capture fish as they swim poised in the hidden depths; he will cast his greedy eyes into the midst of the waters, craving to gather pellucid stones (pearls) and, immersed himself, will bring them forth together with the homes of protective shell wherein they lurk. No peril is left for man to brave, profit is sought by means of shipwreck, and the diver who has plunged into the depths becomes, like the booty, the object of recovery. And not always small is the gain to be derived from this dangerous labor (implying that a diver’s life was usually an unenviable one) pearls are worth fortunes, and because of these splendid stones there is scarcely a rich man left. Dwellers on land are burdened with the treasures of the sea. A man born to such a lot plies his skill along the shore; or he purchases at a fixed wage another’s labor and sells for a profit what it has brought him, a pedlar in the many different forms of sea products”. [Manilius, Astronomica, 1st century AD, book 5, p.333.]

To move from the absurd to the sublime, the association of Venus and Mercury is a very apt one. Gabriel is the messenger Archangel and Aquarius is the human face among the four Fixed Signs. An image of Gabriel can often be found in the Southern areas of Churches.

Saint St Archangel Gabriel Christian Russian Handpainted Orthodox Byzantine Icon

Fomalhaut can bring unexpected honours as symbolized in Gabriel’s role in the Annunciation.

The Babylonians are credited with identifying the water-bearer pouring out water to a giant fish. The water-bearer represented their god Ea, and he ruled the period either side of the winter solstice when Babylon was subject to flooding. The Great Fish was supposed to be the parent of the Pisces fishes, in both Babylonian and Greek myth.

The Mercurial nature becomes very clear in nativities that have a close association of Fomalhaut and Mercury. Conjunctions produce strong intellects unless otherwise diminished.