Material that involves experiential reviews demands more than words or ratings; it implores experience and beseeches boundary-crossing. This is why the Athenæum has created the Planetary Rubric. The outline of the seven influential spheres herein underscores many currents and traditions; these planets are steadfast and transcendental. This will be the formulaic prescript for which reviews, experiences, and thoughts are weighed.
The Sun illuminates and radiates: both content and delivery for the Rubric, and creativity and power esoterically. The Sun is conscious and confident; it is also the personification of vitality, life, and health. The Sun category of the Rubric seeks to highlight the ways in which the source examined displays uniqueness, through successful delivery and experience. This is about power, image, command, and experience, as well as the overall life-force of what is in question.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of The Sun, the Athenæum wants more than ego or brightness. We seek to understand how successful the information is presented to readers and seekers at differing levels of experience. Is the content difficult to digest and unnecessarily complicated? Are the mysteries given freely and processable?
The overall power must lend to how the information is presented, either in new ways or methods (and with key points highlighted that we would come to expect from the topic). Mostly, is it unique, clever, creative, successful, illuminative, and does it embody vitality and power in the Occult?
The Moon embodies the work of the Unconscious: all things that pertain to the tides of Occult practice are listed here. The Moon category of the Rubric involves spells, rituals, rites, recipes, meditations, and all that the word “workings” may blanket. This also implies that the way in which these workings create a resonance within the reader and worker/performer is of the utmost importance. Whether this be in dreams, knowings, outcomes, or submersive experience, the Moon epitomizes it all.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of the Moon, the Athenæum seeks content that penetrates and permeates beyond invocation – does the content evoke an emotional and magickal response? The Moon is what carries the waves of the Unknown into the conscious and unconscious realms and soul of the reader and seeker.
When scoring here, we ask ourselves if the content is doable, workable, successful, attainable, lasting, effective, magickal, and so on. Simply put, do the rites, rituals, recipes, spells, meditations, and workings therein create a natural cycle of phases in which one grows and flows?
Mars energy is that of motivation and action. Although commonly considered aggressive and ignitable, Mars embodies the ability for the content (whether that be rites or art or words or anything between) to become living and breathing workable, doable, inspiring materia. The encapsulation of said energy shall transcend just action and motivation, however; it should light the flame of the reader or performer to that of transported, exalted, or activated dealings and doings. Moreover, the energetic frenzy of Mars is that of pure strength. There shall be formidable and potent forces that incite the action, growing exponentially from the strength of the source.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of Mars, the Athenæum aims for quality of strength coupled with the innate workability therein. Does the content create desire? Does it become a catalyst for arcane undertakings? Mars also fosters a specific magnetism, so is the material attractive and drawing?
When scoring here, we ask ourselves if we are moved, inspired, motivated, lured… and if, within the realms of these feelings, we can pull from the strength thereof – and work, forward and upward and out of bounds.
Mercury exemplifies☿ communication, in more ways than one. This category concerns writing style, editing, and overall communication of content (including development, processes, and technology). Mercury is a messenger, so how the messages of the source content are delivered and received are of vital relevance. Mercuriality aside, the main purpose for this Rubric is conciseness, seamlessness, and poignant conveyance to the audience. Flow, grammar, intonation… All of these are weighed deliberately.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of Mercury, the Athenæum delves into all means of how the content is transmitted via communication. Does the content percolate flawlessly and smoothly? Is the editing impeccable and the relay of information memorable?
Things considered here are: engagement, delivery, writing style, overall editing, and the ability of the material to become significant, meaningful, and unforgettable. In a world saturated with various technologies and means of communication and content delivery, Mercury asks us to take it all in simultaneously, while isolating the means and skills of the content assessed therein.
Jupiter encompasses more than just luck and “money magick.” Jupiter feels accessible; it is the energy of availability and helpfulness – a steadfast aide – that makes this category essential. It involves the ability to both ascertain and perform the content with reasonable ease. The Jupiter category of the Rubric addresses the price, the availability, the accessibility, and the innate capability and skillfulness for the material to be helpful, truthful, and prosperous. Jupiterian energy is indulgent. It is a wealth of material in a positive and expansive current.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of Jupiter, the Athenæum questions and explores the material for how it is conveyed, via convenience, access, and possibility. Is the price reasonable? Is the material feasible, usable, and accessible for the general reader? Is it readily available?
But most of all, we seek to find authentic and truthful material that is a conduit for Jupiterian energy and its helpfulness.
Venus is all that is love and beauty; but, more so, Venusian energy is total aesthetics and attractiveness by way of creativity and charisma. This category envelops all enhancements: art, quality, initial and lasting attraction, construction, and magnetism. Creativity is a must here, as is beauty, value, and charm. Venus is what initially appeals and engages. Enticement, captivation, fascination… all of these epitomize the reactions sought from the Athenæum, and in turn, the general readers/seekers/workers.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of Venus, the Athenæum demands a certain quality – not just of luxury materials, but of art, aesthetics, and intrigue. Is the material enchanting, does it draw one in? Is it worthy of Venusian energy? Does the content forge a relationship with the reader, etc.?
The material must bring pleasure, fashion, abundance, beauty, and be elegant yet comfortable. Furthermore, it must be quality, both in construction and concept.
Saturn is reserved, tentative, and penetrates depths unsought by casual observers and participants. The Saturn category of the Rubric deals with the intense and expansive journey to the soul’s substratum. This category traverses how complex and nuanced these laylines run beneath the content. Additionally, this section questions how well the content is researched (and therefore cited). This means exploring the bottom of the depths through the paradox of sources and inspiration used, i.e. bibliography.
When using the Rubric to score under the category of Saturn, the Athenæum surveys the levels and layers of the work as a whole. What is underneath the Venusian aesthetics and the action of Mars? Is/are the inspiration/sources/research strong, admirable, and provocative?
How scholared, experienced, and well-learned is the creator/author? Saturn exemplifies wisdom, discipline, practicality, and lessons via discernment, study, and more. Are these depths and lessons both present, and if so, do they resonate with personal effectiveness and growth?
Each planet is weighed on a scale of one to three. A score of three means the source material exceeded expectations; a score of two means the material met expectations; a score of one means the material disappointed or did not meet expectations.
For examples of the Planetary Rubric in action, see the following Reviews:
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