Ancient cultures have always looked to the sky as a timekeeping device. Just as the Sun's motion throughout the zodiac marks changes throughout the year, the Moon's motion throughout the night sky marks the changes throughout the month. For this purpose, the Moon's own psuedo-zodiac was designed based on her position in relation to notable star groupings. These are the 28 Lunar Mansions and observances and recordings of the Moon through these places appear in several cultures including the Middle East, India, and China.
The Lunar Mansions are determined by the position of the Moon as she circles the #Earth
. Taking her average motion of 12° 51' and 26" and dividing that by the 360°s of the zodiac, we arrive at the 28 distinct positions the Moon can occupy in the sky on any given night.
The Arabic word for the Mansions is "manzil"منازل meaning "house" and these positions were conceptualized as places where the Moon rested for the night. The Chinese name for the Mansions 二十八宿 (Èr shí bā xiù) better illustrates this with the word xiù (宿) meaning something more like a place one finds lodging for the night, almost like a motel room you would stay in on your way to some other location.
As a central time keeping device, the lunar mansions were popularly used in astrology and magic with each Mansion having its own traits, characteristics, and effects as well as assigned images (reminiscent of Decanic image magic from Egypt), spirits, and suffamigations.
The First Mansion
Name: Al Nath (The Butting)
Indicator Star: Probably Sheratan and Mesarthim which mark the horns of Aries, hence the name of the mansion.
Zodiacal Measurement: 0° Aries 00' - 12° Aries 51'
Electional Properties: Take medicine, begin a journey, purchase livestock, create discord between individuals, and imprisonment Not good for marriage, partnerships, or the foundation of a meaningful friendship or alliance as one individual usually tries to overpower the other
Talismanic Image: A black man with his hair wrapped and encircled, having in his right hand a spear in the manner of a warrior.
Talismanic Properties: Good for motivation and completing projects, safety during travel, ending unhealthy relationships, and fucking murder.
Spirit: Geniel or Geriz
Suffumigation: Liquid storax (styrax)
Notes: Something of a difficult mansion to get a feel for, Al Nath has a propensity for duality. On the one hand, many of its properties are beneficial, such as lighting a fire under someone to encourage them to begin a project they've been putting off or for protection during journeys, but it has some pretty nasty utilizations as well such as ruining relationships, and cursing people with imprisonment or death (literally the example from Picatrix). How one approaches working with this mansion will depend heavily on what the goal is.
Ancient cultures have always looked to the sky as a timekeeping device. Just as the Sun's motion throughout the zodiac marks changes throughout the year, the Moon's motion throughout the night sky...www.medievalastrologyguide.com