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Thoth and the Caduceus

Nicki Scully

Originally appearing in News From the Cauldron, 2000 issue

This issue is dedicated to my mentor and teacher, Thoth, who has contributed to my life in ways I could never have imagined.

It has been my honor and priviledge to introduce Thoth to the people who have come to me for my classes, journeys and even in much of my healing work. His presence has brought life and color to every encounter, and it is my greatest joy to learn from him and be able to share his wisdom.

My first meeting with Thoth was during a journey of transmission from my teacher, Nadia Dagelis, in the mid-80s. At that time, I was brought before a council of Egyptian neters (gods) during which one of them was to become my mentor. Although I was thoroughly intimidated in the moment, I recognized Thoth by his long curved ibis beak. He appeared so large, however, that I came only to his belt buckle. It was almost a year later that Brian O’dea reintroduced me to Thoth and I realized that he was a supportive ally. The adventure began in earnest. When I turned my attention to this new relationship, the teachings of the Golden Cauldron began to pour into form through my friends and students, and the wealth of material began to supercede everything else in my life-„ resulting in the cassettes, the book, the lectures and teaching materials, and most wonderfully, the healing work. I am most pleased and excited to see how, over time, the work has spread and grown, and many of the people with whom I’ve shared have now transformed the knowledge into new and ingenious incarnations.

So who is Thoth? All spoken and written language is attributed to him, as is science, mathematics, healing and medicine, and wisdom. He was the mediator of the Gods, stepping in when things get out of balance and infusing his wisdom into the most dire of situations. He is also the Lord of the Moon, and the teacher of great magicians. As the Scribe of the gods, Thoth records the deeds of humans into the acashic records and their DNA. To work with Thoth is to commit to living with wisdom, for power without wisdom is a dangerous thing. To the Greeks, Thoth was known as Hermes, and to the Romans, Mercury, the messenger of the Gods. It is my hope and desire that through the pages of this newsletter, some of you might get turned on to this humorful, magical, and wise being, and as a result, find more life and color in every moment of your life.


The caduceus is an Egyptian symbol that lives prominently in our western mainstream culture, primarily as a logo for many health care practitioners and companies, including the American Medical Association. Many chose this symbol because of the picture’s meaning and the effect it has on the people who look at it.

Each part of the image can come alive in a person to create enduring changes. The principle power comes from the two snakes that wind their way up the spinal column, or central staff. The snakes represent the kundalini energies that move up two etheric channels known as the ida and the pingala in tantric lore. These conduits carry the energy up through the body and connect the physical and spiritual realms. The snakes represent the elements of water and fire, male and female, and yin and yang.

The wings symbolize the air element that we associate with our spiritual self. They unite us with the entire cosmos and give us the freedom to explore it.

The central staff is the shushumna canal or our central energetic artery, that runs within our spinal column. In the Caduceus staff is made of metal and represents the element of earth.

The round ball at the top, where the metal makes a loop like the top of an ankh concentrating blue light, symbolizes where the element air in physical form meets the pure diamond body, or essence of spirit, at the pineal gland.

Together, these symbols express optimum balance and the connection we all have to higher cosmic intelligence. It’s like an electrical circuit that has different components that interact with one another and with whomever is paying attention. When we meditate on the caduceus, it ignites energy flows in our bodies according to our abilities to conduct the energy at that moment. The life energy raised through this practice nurtures the electromagnetic field that surrounds our bodies and helps counter the depletion caused by environmental degradation.

The following meditation will energize your body, mind, and spirit, and give a boost of energy to whatever you are trying to achieve. As a practice, meditate on this symbol for balance, inspiration, and healing, and an increased ability to accomplish your goals.


The Caduceus Empowerment is the foundation of the Alchemical Healing work, and its integration is the goal. It is given by Thoth through the teachers of Alchemical Healing, and is a major force in the transformation and awakening processes. Once it is given, recipients gain deeper and deeper knowledge of the symbols, and of the balance and power that is conferred during this powerful initiation. For those who do not have access to an Alchemical Healing teacher, the following meditation will serve to prepare the way, and with vigilance and practice a great deal can be accomplished on your own.


Optimally one should meditate upon rising in the morning, although you will benefit from practicing at any time. The more you practice, the more you will benefit.

Close your eyes and relax. Ground and center yourself with a few deep breaths. Mentally build the staff and hold each element in your mind for a moment…

Start by visualizing a golden staff. The bottom of the staff touches the earth. The top is shaped into a golden loop. Sense the gold, cool, hard metal…

Underneath the loop, two white wings spread out to either side of the staff. The feathers in the wings have a slight movement and feeling of lightness. Hold in your mind for a moment the image of the wings…

Two snakes, their tails touching the earth, coil around and rise up the staff in a double helix. They part from the staff at the wings, and each head rises up on either side of the loop toward the sky. Feel the snakes for a moment…

Hold this image of the caduceus in your mind and see a concentration of light blue energy within the center of the loop. As you continue to focus on the caduceus, you will see a flow of energy emanating from the snakes’ heads and rising to the sky. Begin to sense how the snakes are channeling energy between the earth and the sky…

See this caduceus as animated and alive. Hold this image in your mind and allow yourself to study it. As you focus on the entire symbol and its energy, you will begin to experience its effect.

As you work with the caduceus your energies will resonate with its energies. There is much to discover from this practice. This form has been created and maintained for millennia, so when you practice, you will be building on the work of those who have gone before.

Nicki Scully