Planets (from Greek planasthai, “to wander”) are the familiar celestial
bodies orbiting the Sun. They were regarded as stars by the ancients,
who referred to them as “wanderers” because, unlike the so-called
fixed stars, they were always changing their positions with respect to
the background of the celestial sphere. The Sun and Moon are also
“wanderers” in this sense, and traditional astrology referred to them as
“planets.” In traditional astrology, astrological influences manifest
themselves primarily through the planets.
Because angels and planets are both inhabitants of the celestial
spheres, it is not a great leap to make connections between them.
Hence, writers informed both by astrology and angelology developed
various schemas correlating the two. The Muslim thinker al-
Barceloni, for example, postulated the following:
According to the Gnostics, the archons served as antithetical,
evil archangels, and thus, also corresponded to the seven planets.
Because archons were also related to the seven deadly sins, the identification
is as follows:
In other correlations, the character of the angel and the nature of
the planet (according to astrological tradition) occasionally correspond,
but frequently the connection is tenuous. In a few places no
similarity of meaning can be found, making it appear that traditional
assignments were somewhat arbitrary. (See also Days of the Week)