Sacred India Tarot Archive – the Suit of Staves – Ace


The Sacred India Tarot bridges Indian yoga and mythology with western esoteric schools.

Tarot key 1 - the Magus - belongs here, to open a new Suit - the Suit of Wands.  His is the Intelligence of Transparency.  With the Wand in his right, he conducts the divine current.  His left hand indicates the garden.  In front of him are the tools for the Work.

Tarot key 1 – the Magus – belongs here, to open a new Suit – the Suit of Wands. His is the Intelligence of Transparency. With the Wand in his right, he conducts the divine current. His left hand indicates the garden. In front of him are the tools for the Work.


SITA Sacred India Tarot 8 staves

Jane’s Notes – More than a decade has passed since Rohit and I worked on this suit.  Reviewing it, I see the essence of the Wands – the Staves in Indian mythology – as a warrior’s dance.  The action is martial but it moves with grace – for instance the wonderful episode which carries Rama and Sita across the sea to freedom and the homeland:  an End-of Karma card, as with the Eights in the other three Suits.

There is also the gesture of the multi-dimensional Ashwin Twins, children of the Sun – as they reach a long hand to the struggling mariner in the high seas.   We created a rare depiction of this stupendous and health giving deity.

SITA Sacred India Tarot Ashwins page of Staves -

We began to touch upon the martial art as a dance form, towards the end of the Suit of Arrows in this Archive (See Archive of all Posts, or use the Search button).  Returning through the Wands/Staves, the form and its focus matures, giving Rama the power to pierce the formidable Ravannah King of Demons.

There is an old Buddhist teaching:  the well placed stone.  Not how many stones you throw – but which one, and where it lands – in conversation and in dance, as well as in battle:  the Art of Life, the great middle way.

In the Indian sense, these pebbles are lingum, the Sign.




Rohit’s Notes (2003)

“I have selected for this Suit of Wands, the Yuddha Kanda – the section of the Ramayana dealing with the battle to recover Sita from captivity in Lanka and its aftermath from the Ramayana.  We cannot deliver the whole epic in one Suit, but we can distil some essence from this archetypal chapter.  A Gnostic book I read says that, as well as their more traditional meaning as the Fire Suit, the Wands represent the air and the intellect, just as we suppose the Swords to do.  So we get multiple layers of meaning here.

“The Ramayana and Mahabharatha are not just India’s epics;  they are the national epics also of Java, Bali, Indonesia, Cambodia and Thailand.  I would like to show by hinting at those costume styles, that Indian mythology like the Tarot, transcends local contexts and has universal relevance.  The Balinese look is spectacular, as this illustration shows.

“I like the tunic clad bearded Ravana;  it shows a sense of virile power instead of being grossly ugly and repulsive as most representations of Ravana are.  Perhaps the demons should be shown in this style all through?”



Rohit’s Notes (2003): The story goes:  Rama in alliance with Sugriva king of the monkeys, and with Hanuman’s assistance, attacks Lanka where his wife Sita is held captive by the King of the Demons, Ravana.  Rama slays Ravana and rescues Sita who then undergoes an ordeal of fire in order to clear herself of the suspicion of infidelity.  At a later stage, Rama becomes imperilled by doubt, loses his trust in the feminine and banishes her to the forest where she meets the sage Valmiki.  Valmiki is the traditional author of the Ramayana and its seer.  In the forest, Sita gives birth to Rama’s two sons, but after having to again protest her innocence, asks to be received by the earth, which swallows her up.

Sita and the Earth

“Like Krishna in the Suit of Arrows, Rama is an avatar of Vishnu the Sustainer.  The poem is immensely popular in India, setting prototypes of a harmonious and just kingdom, conjugal love, filial and fraternal love.  Everything is designed for harmony which after being disrupted is at last regained.”

Jane’s Notes:
Significantly, this story is a multi-level parable.  For instance, Rama attains the ideal of wise government and conjugal happiness, but “loses” the plot when he drops to a lower level of the mind and its advisors.  The prototypes are self-sustaining, eternally.  They bide their time while the human reascends to their timeless horizon.  The woman, received into the earth, is the earth’s wisdom which births us.  All ideas which battle to the contrary, are time drawn out in fantasy.  This suit of Staves depicts some of the psychological uplifts and downdraughts between the Worlds.


Rohit’s Notes – “Ace of Staves – Building the Stone Bridge over the Sea to Lanka – representing creative endeavour”

“We need to have a scene of frantic activity with a bridge of stone receding into the horizon over the sea, monkeys clambering about helping in the construction, and so on.  Rama, Laxmana and Hanuman can be shown supervising the operation.  This is not very popular as a scene in art, so we have only this vague reference to offer.  Please feel free to use your imagination.

SITA staves visual reference stone bridge

“The scene of Sagara the ocean offering to help Rama may also be used as a reference.  The Single wand could be a fiery flaming arrow that Rama holds and threatens to release into the ocean to dry it up, so that the building of the bridge is not hampered.  Perhaps it would be best to combine Sagara before Rama and bridge-building as one composite scene.  The bow held in Rama’s hand in the sculpture panel does look remarkably like a wand anyway!”


Jane’s Notes – An observation:  The immense labour in building up a causeway of stones in the sea, to access the higher dharma dimension.  This is our human way, committed to our real relationships as well to sadhana and all creative endeavours – the sweat of our brow, the fruit of our lives.   Interestingly when Rama returns with Sita, they are borne effortlessly by the dimension attained through Ravana’s defeat !  (See 8 of Staves, pictured above.)

The initial work itself reminds me of this painting:

Rubicon 63 - Building a Jetty 1986:  the beginning of the process, with all its friends and backers and a salutary shipwreck nearby!

Rubicon 63 – Building a Jetty 1986: the beginning of the process, with all its friends and backers and a salutary shipwreck nearby.  This was about relationships, the ache and hunger of the soul for connection.  The island the jetty is being built from looks like a mushroom cloud, but was based on the Alet headland near St Malo in Brittany.


Rohit’s Notes – from the Book with the Deck
“The impossible is suddenly prosaic reality:  a bridge has been built upon the ocean.  The demon king Ravana was secure in his island fortress of Lanka – the city of gold bounded by the impassable sea.  Ravana who has kept the kidnapped Sita wife of Rama prisoner in Lanka, is shockingly confronted with the unbelievable news and unthinkable consequences.

“… The Ace of Staves sears away the illusions and delusions dear to the heart;  it forces a creative and ultimately more integral response to the challenge of life.  If one persists in the old ways, the consequences are swift and harsh as one of Rama’s weapons.  This colossal feat was accomplished with the help of his great brother Laxmana and his simian-like Vanara allies – magical creatures of equal, if not greater accomplishment than humans … Such unorthodox brilliance in the swift use of resources, the sheer chutzpah of conception and execution, is typical of the Staves energy…   The Staves are only apparently disruptive, and integrate the churned situation at a higher level of consciousness. 

“In a reading:  Situations unfold at bewildering speed.  Vision and visionaries:  energy, fiery and swift;  resiliance and enduring courage, stimulating thinkers.   Shadow:  low creative energy, or misapplication – frustration and delays, over-commitment at all levels, sexual imbroglios.  There is no need to take on the world.  Are you running away with yourself and your enthusiasm?  Conversely, what is the strangest, weirdest thing you could do to get this done?


Here is the finished card:

Sacred India Tarot - the Ace of Staves

Sacred India Tarot – the Ace of Staves


Correspondence – Rohit to Jane
“Ace of Wands – There is nothing significant I would like to change in this card as it has a very unusual other worldly element to it.  Supernatural events are manifestly taking place as we look.  The monkey in the picture can be safely regarded as Sugriva or any one of the innumerable simian hordes who supported Rama.  When portraying Hanuman he should be white in colour as he was an albino monkey, very handsome and muscular with warrior’s helm and holding a mace or even hammer. (See Sacred India Tarot, Knight of Arrows in this series.) The hammer might be a strange choice but I have actually seen pictures of him holding one, and it would be a refreshing change to the normal depiction of Hanuman.

“A very small point that did not occur to me until I saw it.  Rama is shown with Vaishantha forehead markings, in acknowledgement of his being an avatar Vishnu, but he was personally a devotee of Siva, having in fact just established the famous Rameshwaram Siva temple by the Ocean before the events of this card.  It would make a good point about tolerance and the peculiar Hindu genius to meld and assimilate, if Rama was shown with Shaiva markings on the forehead.  I never thought about this point as I did not anticipate any such depiction, but now that it has emerged, it will significantly deepen the spiritual and cultural aspects of the suit.  In all other respects, the card is perfect.”

Shaivite Tilak Hindu Shiva Devotee

Unfortunately I do not seem to have taken this on board for the finished card;  all the better to mention the detail here.






For other Sacred India Tarot posts, look under Recent Posts, Search,
or Archive of All Posts in the title bar.

Rohit Arya
Rohit Arya is an Author, Yogi and Polymath. He has written the first book on Vaastu to be published in the West, {translated into five languages} the first book on tarot to be published in India, co-authored a book on fire sacrifice, and is the creator of The Sacred India Tarot {82 card deck and book}. He has also written A Gathering of Gods. He is a corporate trainer, a mythologist and vibrant speaker as well as an arts critic and cultural commentator. Rohit is also a Lineage Master in the Eight Spiritual Breaths system of Yoga.
Earlier posts about the deck, including the first 15 Major Arcana archives are in The deck is copyrighted (c) 2011 to the publishers, Yogi Impressions Books pvt, and available also on Amazon and internationally.

Jane Adams
My adventure invites fellow travellers. I am a poet, an artist and a seer. I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.
This blog is a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books).

All original art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012 – 2014. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

A History of the Golden Seed


Lily of the field, and tower of alchemy

Lily of the field, and tower of alchemy

This post is a concluding chapter from the book “Manishya – On Being Human” which my friend Actaeon and I wrote and illustrated together, a few years ago.

I like to see Kabbalah and Alchemy in the historical context because – for any whose interest it quickens – it is your/our history, the recurrent surfacing of our threads of life in the broad human tapestry.


Crossroads: The Mandala of the Star, Cross and Crescent

Star Cross Crescent with Omkara of the east

Star Cross Crescent with Omkara of the east


OUR THEME includes Christ’s parable of the Talents, any talent or potential in Reality.

In the New Testament story, (Luke, 19) three stewards were given each a talent or treasure to look after while the King was away. The first one invested his, and with it made ten more; the King on his return, rewarded his trust. The second steward made five talents and was also rewarded, but the third hid his away safely in a piece of cloth. He felt the King was a hard man who took out what he did not put in, and reaped what he had not sown. The King replied, “Take his one talent from him and give it to the one who has ten.”

In other words, the Talent is the sowing and harvesting of a golden seed. From the golden seed we grow our White Roses of forgiveness and vitality. We dare to be wise, to know, and to create.

profiles welcome across time

profiles welcome across time


In 2014, we don’t have to be tourists to enter our own sacred space and bring heaven to earth down the lightning-flash.


The Knights Templar were lightning-conductors. They opened a road for the pilgrim between light and darkness. Their art transforms night into light, and in their cathedrals the Christ was uncrucified, like risen bread.

But their Order was powerful, and was feared and destroyed by the Church, though their buildings of the sanctuary still stand. A century after Chartres, the last of the Knights were hunted down by a pair of popes, and burned alive. The popes survived them by barely a year. Then the plagues attacked the body and fabric of genetics, society and politics, fracturing and fragmenting space and time. There was a charnal, collective shock in medieval Europe. From this compost grave, a flower of Renaissance would arise.

Botticelli’s Aphrodite on the wave, a body of light, is beautiful to touch and see.

Aphrodite, after Botticelli (1992)

Aphrodite, after Botticelli (1992)


We can trace the Talent or seed potential through history, as the Tree of Life was nurtured in the collective unconscious.

Concurrently with the Cathedral builders, during the 11th and 12th centuries in Spain, a flowering of culture occurred as Jew, Moslem and Christian lived in harmony with one another. These communities expressed freely their traditions, which developed through the teachings of the Tree. A great Jewish teacher called Nachmanides of Cordoba consolidated the ancient Tradition. It seems that the working model of the Tree with its Ten sefiroth and Twenty-two paths emerged during this period. It was reformulated from the Biblical Merkabah (Chariot) of Ezekiel’s vision, which had been conserved in the visionary vessels of the Essenes.

The Jewish people had historically been so scattered – some felt that in order for the Tradition to survive, what had always been taught verbally should now be written down. The form we have today is the ‘Kabbalah’: ‘to receive‘ in Hebrew. ‘Qaba-Allah’: ‘the house of God‘ in Arabic.

Sacred geometry - lily and rose

Sacred geometry – lily and rose


By 1492 the ‘golden gathering together’ ended, as the Christians dominated Spain; the Jews and the Moslems were persecuted and thrown out of the country.

The Spanish Inquisition almost annihilated the inner knowledge, wiping out the mystical aspects of Christianity and its connections to its Judaic roots and Moslem brothers and sisters. Some who survived accepted token conversion to Christianity, in order to continue working where their roots were.


Eight path Tifareth mandala:  Part the waves, kiss the lips, turn the wheel, fingers touch numbers on the clock, enter the cave, find the jewel, and climb the mountain through the rainbow.

Eight path Tifareth mandala: Part the waves, kiss the lips, turn the wheel, fingers touch numbers on the clock, enter the cave, find the jewel, and climb the mountain through the rainbow.

The Tradition was taken to the Medici courts of Florence; Leonardo, Michelangelo and Raphael were possible receivers of the knowledge. The Renaissance expanded this golden seed throughout the Arts and Sciences.

The Tree inspired creative work but remained secret in the background, from fear of persecution and the Inquisition.   The golden seed and its alchemical symbolism found its way into the “Primaveras” and stone work of the great Italians.

Hermes (1992)

Hermes (1992)

After the expulsion of the Jews from Spain a revival of the Tradition took place in Safed in Northern Israel. Associated with this, are the names Moses Cordovero and Isaac Luria.

Some groups of Jews were welcomed by other European Jewish communities. The city of Thessalonika, in northern Greece, was under the rule of the Ottomam empire. Commenting that “Ferdinand of Spain was a fool for exiling the Jewish population”, the Sultan celebrated the culture of this displaced people who enriched his city. From this Jewish community emerged many healers and doctors who practised their art in the Sultans’ Courts.

The Sephardic Jews continued to live in Thessalonika until many centuries later, when they were decimated by the Nazi persecutions in 1942.

Solomon's Cube, rosicrucean Emblem 6

Solomon’s Cube, rosicrucean Emblem 6


Dhjabir Ibn Hayyon

Alchemy also became linked to the Teachings, with Moslems particularly adept in this science. Through the stimulus of Dhjabir Ibn Hayyon of Baghdad a scientific School arose. The Moors brought the alchemical chemistry to Europe. An English monk in 1144, Robert of Chester, translated works on alchemy, from the Arabic.

The conditions for this work were solitude, silence, patience, perseverence and discretion.

Alchemy became a part of the inner tradition. One exponent was Nostradamus whose prophetic writings reverberate through time; one of his later prophecies being:

“The two great masters will be friends, their great powers will be increased.
The Sun and Eagle will appear to be victorious.
Peace prosecuted by death, it shall be achieved.
In one night the Tree that has been long dead and withered shall grow green again.
After this war which would have lasted for a good while,
there shall be a renewed reign of Saturn and a Golden Age.
Here shall begin an age of Universal Peace – a Peace of 1000 years.”

This prophecy relates to the nature of the Tree; when it is seen and practiced as part of the living spiritual tradition, the feminine aspects of Binah (Saturn) will revive, and a Golden Age will flourish once more.


Chevalier Inconnu (1992)

Chevalier Inconnu (1992)

In the 15th and 16th centuries, esoteric societies emerged through the Rosy Cross. They developed the Tradition from the root Sefira of the Tree, Malkuth. The aim was to square the circle and build heaven on earth: to balance the four elements alchemically: and to guard the Tree as a living symbol.

The early Rosicruceans, with a mystical connection to the Christ, developed discreetly in France, Germany and England. They offered a Utopia – a Hermetic alignment for scientists, intellectuals, artists and philosophers. Rene Descartes, Robert Boyle, Thomas Haydon and Thomas Vaughan all became exponents of the Rosicrucean Tradition. Elizabethan England witnessed a flowering of literature and plays. Francis Bacon, Shakespeare and Robert Flood were the main distributors of Hermetic knowledge. Further schools developed in England influencing Sir Isaac Newton, Christopher Wren and William Blake. During this period, writers such as John Bunyan in Pilgrims Progress and John Milton in Paradise Lost repeated the theme of the spiritual journey: our descent and ascent of the Tree of life paths, towards symbolic discovery of the eternal city.

In Blake’s hymn Jerusalem, the second verse resonates symbolically the journey of the ascent through the Sefiroth and paths to Kether:        

“Bring me my bow of burning gold
Bring me my arrows of desire

Bring me my spear of clouds unfold

Bring me my chariot of fire.

I will not cease from mental fight

Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand

Till we have built Jerusalem

In England’s green and pleasant land.”


Mystics who travelled the pathways of the “Kabbalah” were known as the Merkabah riders, those who drive the chariot or vehicle to ascend to the upper worlds.

There are very interesting parallels around the Sufi teachings of Mevlana and the Mevlevis, the whirling Dervishes. The turning practice called Mukableh means “coming face to face” – an encounter with the self and God.



The two words Merkabah and Mukableh have a resonance. The Merkabah riders have the same intention of coming face to face with God through the Tree.

The golden seed, an alchemical symbol, is perceived and cultivated in the pineal centre through yoga which means “Union”. The golden seed becomes an irresistible focus, aligning the Worlds and the centuries. It grows among groups and circles of friends in the transmission, and tends to avoid publicity and large crowds.


From the fifteenth-century Renaissance culture in Europe, the cult of the individual Master took root, as the fair art of Perspective opened up.   Then the Baroque broke forth. With the loss of innocence, and focus upon sensational artistic effects, the Talent became vain. Dazzling rococo and gilt surfaces, devoid of symbol or meaning, decayed into pure decoration. Power and clarity were lost behind the fig leaf -whose guilt obscured original innocence.

In the seventeenth century, the same Talent branching into physical sciences, became an urgent quest for all roads of history to meet and rediscover wisdom.

At this crossroads, the golden seed was nurtured by a regenerated Rose Cross Fraternity in Germany, and by the masonic founding fathers of America. “Our strong child” was announced in European pamphlets such as the Fama Fraternitatis, which satyrised religious intolerance, superstition and charlatans.

aleph doodle

aleph doodle

Telescoping the stars to earth, the New Astronomy straddled the sixteenth and seventeeth centuries with the soul’s need to re-define, verify the motions, and share the result with colleagues. A scientific community was born, inheriting from Pythagorus and from the early Renaissance a hidden truth: the Discovery always transcends – is greater than – any individual who discovers.

Discovery 1963 - painted at school

Discovery 1963 – painted at school


Subsequently, the Talent became channeled into a narrow band of Reason by rationalists and cynics, who “wrapped it up in a cloth”. From that confined place emerge the birth pangs of today – a multicultural crossroads, a rapidly changing global matrix. The Talent is a young bird sitting on a quantum nest of probable parables, crying “Quark!”

The shadows and distortions we experience, seem to be cast onto the screen of our life by a greater Light emerging behind them: “I am a hidden treasure, and I seek to be known.”

Our Journey into the Tree of Life, at any age or era, enquires into the soul’s origins, and with awe receives the Greater mystery – the golden Conscious seed.   As we walk forth into the coming day, we may recognise and welcome these histories daily, as our own; for we are humanity.   We have seen and been it all.



Part Two – the Present

See also my earlier post “Alchemy and Self-enquiry“.

Ez haim tree of life, with three granthis

Ez haim tree of life, with three granthi..

Journeying into the Tree of Life  – THE GRANTHI KNOTS

THE KNIGHT (male) journeys through the mandala of the Rose (female). The Knight and the Rose symbolise our learning process from childhood. The task of the child throughout life, is to reconcile and honour his or her parents – the incarnation’s archway whose horizons expand. They, the right and left pillars of the Tree of Solomon, stand south and north. I journey through their portal, travelling from the west to the rising sun.

This is a quadriform Key to life:

“All experience is an arch where thro’
gleams that untravell’d world
whose margin fades
for ever and for ever, as I move … “
                                                                                                         Alfred Lord Tennyson

In our shadow are rigidities of beliefs and indoctrination which devour their own tail, and become a closed circuit of births or reactive patterns of behaviour.

Arcanum 12

Arcanum 12

In alchemy, the arrow’s flight is put into reverse, and flies “upside down” into the heart of Dante’s Rose of paradise. Our attachments to “life-and-death” matters begin to drop away of their own accord. They fall out of the pockets of that powerful tarot symbol, the Hanging Man – the path of MEM, the Waters of Life. Diving into the unconscious, he smiles as he performs a cosmic headstand, treads the starry firmament, and is born again – as dew from heaven.

The personal becomes transpersonal, moving deeper into the Tree.
We reach our own interior crossroads,
where the granthi of our genetic, karmic and mental tendencies are knotted.

Kundalini Tree

Kundalini Tree

In Indian Yogic culture which parallels the Tree of Life, the granthis correspond to the solar plexus, the throat, and third-eye centres. Kundalini – the Shekhinah/Shakti – has to break through these knots in the course of her journey up the spine, and free their energy potential. The first is sometimes called the knot of Brahma (creator), the second that of Vishnu (sustainer), the third that of Rudra (destroyer).

Human consciousness reaches union with its own true Self, through these three states.

The first concerns personality, ancestral and genetic codes (ahamkara).

The second addresses issues still deeply engraved in the Soul Law
from previous lives, which await resolution (buddhi and ahamkara).

At the third, (beyond chit and manas, the mind) time and space dissolve, and grace prevails.

These points of tension or conflict, seek resolution. In the Tree’s Lower Face, the cutting of the first granthi of Yesod to Tifareth, across the “Red Sea” path of Hod and Netzach, frees our spiritual heart, Tifareth, from ancestral ties which bind. After we have lived along the paths forming the Soul cup, we start to understand the nature of our second granthi, – the intersection of Tifareth centre pillar with the horizontal Path of Strength – Gevurah and Hesed. Unravelling this knot, where very deep Karmic issues adhere, releases a potential to receive the Cup of divine grace: Tifareth, Binah, Hokhmah.

Conditioned tensions in the Tree’s Lower Face melt away, as our centre of gravity shifts to the heart; to cross the Abyss “beneath the Angels’ Wings”. The great Wings of Archangel Mikael open from between the shoulder blades. “As children we shall re-enter the mystery of our Heavenly Mother and Father” .

O Angel - 1988

O Angel – 1988


The Soul Law  
THE INCARNATIONS of the soul are a journey to expand consciousness, truth and love – through conflict towards harmony. This is what unconditional love ultimately embraces and contains. At the second granthi, we break the deeply ingrained Soul patterns of victim, persecutor, rescuer. These obscured consciousness (Tifareth), truth (Gevurah) and love (Hesed). They lay embedded for lifetimes to resolve.

Gevurah and Hesed in the Soul triad, are the feminine and masculine pillars of our individual soul Law. The soul Law is reflected in the parental Hod and Netzach to which it gravitates for an incarnatory purpose, seeking resolution. And so, appropriating a bundle of soul memory, the personal “I” – Yesod – takes shape. The soul Law breathes into our ear a Word – the essence of why we have incarnated this lifetime.

Kundalini shakti, 1988

Kundalini shakti, 1988


As we are born again and pick up this live vibration, we acknowledge in ourselves, our parents, their genetic framework, their gift to us however arduous, and our way of discovery through it.   If you rest against a tall beech or oak in the woods, you can listen to the Word: the golden core within. Then you may intuit how time’s ancestral concentric rings in the wood are a plane which crosses the Tree’s height, root and breadth.   These are layers of the onion.   Let us reach the core of our soul Law “that I am“.

This Reality moves and flowers through all our seemingly separate births, linking and drawing them together by soul osmosis.   Osmosis is the law of growth. Moisture and nitrates in the ground are drawn up through the roots as sap, towards the Sun. The sap rises through the cell membranes. As nature abhors a vaccuum, each cell as it empties, draws nourishment up into itself. This is Ascension. In the branches and leaves it photosynthesises with light, and releases life-giving oxygen.

Alchemy calls this ‘the green dragon’; a sensitive extra-terrestrial onlooker may witness the flow of renewed life over the continents, as a quiver of springtime’s emerald ray. Thus, the soul’s release into Spirit from Tifareth, begins to nourish humanity.                      

Bearing rather than scatter the seed
whose fire liberates us,

we are the glowing lamp the Hermit holds.

We are the honey of the melting snows.

9 hermit - Version 4



A YANTRA or sacred circle is a mandala across the stem of soul Law’s osmosis. We practice techniques such as yoga, breath work, meditation, astrology, astrocartography, déja vue, dream exploration and reincarnation regression. We enquire into our own soul Law, what it may be.

Path-working on the Tree of Life awakens the soul’s osmosis and cellular memory. Some of the jigsaw pieces fall into place. As we begin to map some coastlines of the vast interior continent, we gain compassionate access to “that untravell’d world”.

pentacle, after E.Levi

pentacle, after E.Levi

Squaring the Circle:  A Yoga

CONFLICT SEEKS resolution. (See illustration below – “Mandala of the Mind’s four aspects”).  Like integrating the Circle with the ellipse, we may “square our own Circle.”

squaring the circle, old illustration

squaring the circle, old illustration

There are procedures in sacred geometry for this, but in brief, we square our Circle by drawing together mind and heart organically as one, and regulating the breath. This vibrates the vagus nerve. Mind focused in the third eye centre flares like a cobra’s hood and comes to a point. It bows and dives inward. The mind immersed in the heart transcends time and space, and is the key to the opening.

Even when we know we have the key, we cannot always use it; for it comes to the hand of interior peace. By surrendering to the law of gravity which is love, we are usually guided to our roots. The deeper and higher and wider we trust and are transparent, while remaining focused in the heart centre, the simpler the opening way becomes.

Uniting Force to Formation, the Circle is squared when she becomes a garden, a landscape, an organic view of earth from within. She is seeded by Hokhmah through the door of the Queen of Nature – (the Hebrew letter for this, is DALETh).

She as Time – Binah – gives birth to Space at Hesed, over ‘the quantum abyss’ of DAAT.   As in the Emerald Table of Hermes Trismegistus:

“The father is the sun, the mother the moon.
The being is carried in the belly of the wind
and the earth is its nurse.
It is the seed of all beauty throughout the universe.
The power of it is realised when it is reduced to earth.”


Manas Mandala

Manas Mandala of the Mind’s Four Aspects (2004)

On the Mandala of the Mind

OUR THOUGHT constructs formulate our consciousness. In Indian Yoga, the mind is divided into consciousness (the seer, the observer, Chit) then all the many thoughts we have (Manas). Then the choice, the discrimination to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ (Buddhi). Finally, the accumulation of conditioned memory, ego, survival concepts and belief structures (Ahankara).


If we only identify to thought in its possessive context – my work, my art, my child, my thoughts with the comparisons that this is mine, this is yours, then these thoughts will cause fragmentation and separation in time. A division occurs between the internal and the external. For what is in the present is all that can be known.

The same fracture is caused by religious beliefs. If I say ‘I am Moslem and you are a Christian”, then your beliefs and mine cause fragmentation and separation in the identification.  When we empty the mind of thought, we are undivided.

sukhthai rock crysal buddha, 15th century

sukhthai rock crysal buddha, 15th century


The “I” as sacred space takes us beyond time. In this space – the trust and transparency of the Crystal Buddha – all is Holy:  all is compassion. A wise mind remains still. Time equals thought. Space is empty for the fullness. See what it is, then Be. As thinking comes to an end, we are free to love.

When freedom is not bound by thought, then that freeing is absolute. When the mind is still, that is the ending of time.

“The rest is silence.”

Hamsa Great Swan - jnana (wisdom) floats on bhakti (dedication)

Hamsa Great Swan – jnana (wisdom) floats on bhakti (dedication)

How will God come today?
God came today only to be gone tomorrow
but what is in the heart of God
is also in mine

so God and I 
are eternally One






My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012-2014. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address


For Yom Kippur: My Ten Days of Awe


Menorah - the Tree of ten Sapphires

Menorah – the Tree of ten Sapphires


It is YOM KIPPUR, the Jewish New Year.   “Hatima Tovah – May you be forgiven for any wrong you did.”

In my understanding of this, as a non-Jewish Kabbalist, I reflect back over the old year gone by.  Remember what I did;  what I did not do;  what moved, and what did not.  Ten days of Awe lead up to and are crowned with this Day of Atonement.  I atone … to be at one and to be reborn.

With Halevi’s three-weekly Monday meditation on 2 September, we contemplated each day as a Sefira on the Tree – going up the Tree this time:  Malkuth the physical world, the body. Yesod, the feelings and self image.  Hod, the mind life and messenger.  Netzach the cycles of Nature and power base.  Tifareth the soul Consciousness.  Gevurah, restraints and discipline.  Hesed, opportunities for expansion. Binah, Understanding.  Hokhmah, Wisdom.  Finally, Kether:  ADONAI, thou art God.  How do you guide me?

Ez haim - Tree of life, with hebrew names and 22 paths/letters

Ez haim – Tree of life, with hebrew names and 22 paths/letters. We ascend or descend the Tree, Earth to Heaven, along the lightning flash – marked with arrows – which bridges the polarities through the centre which is consciousness. In my Yom Kippur meditation I travel from the base upwards – from Malkuth earth, to Kether divine.

In each Sefira, Emanation or Day of Awe, what is the view from the Upper Worlds and from my inner truth, on the year gone by?

Tree of Life, showing the Ten Sefiroth and their English names, and the first ten Tarot Keys as attributed to them.

Tree of Life, showing the Ten Sefiroth and their English names, and the first ten Tarot Keys as attributed to them.

I find guided meditations led by someone else, very difficult.  It goes a little too fast for my mental/astrological darkroom process, and I cannot visualise anything.  So on that Monday, I decided – starting on Wednesday the 4th – to give one full day to each Sefira, probing the past year’s  essence, the activity, what happens today, and whatever might arise from it.   I would do this with the oracle.

Kabbalah and Vedanta on the Tree of Life, in general principle.  The three gunas

Kabbalah and Vedanta on the Tree of Life, in general principle. The three gunas


My Tarot and dakini-oracle decks were both busy, so I got out The Sacred India Tarot.  I have discovered this to be a profound, accurate psychological tool, responding to all traditions.  Though I painted the cards myself, I am objectively intimate with them, as if they were done by someone else.

About half way along, I saw that what was coming through, and coming to a head, was an unexpected view of my “Great Matter” which much occupied me in the first half of this year.  It is a private matter.  We all have one.  It is at the axis of this lifetime, with its own pain, grief, guilt and intense search for healing.  My ten days of Awe passed not quietly, but on the hoof – journeying around, as the situation emerged into place.  Each card illumined it.  My hope for it continues open ended, and I must let go and let God.   The meditation was active on the ground, physical and busy with household stuff, and often ‘dozing off’ or distracted.  Each morning I did my writing on the day before, which leads me into sanctuary.  Then things settle, and the prayer begins.

For each card, I cut the deck into three piles, put them back together;  repeat this, three times.   Then I turn over the top card of the middle pile, and take it in.  I read Rohit’s interpretation and my own.  I write some more, and light dawns.    After that, the day goes on – on my bike through the buses.

 The three piles represent the centre, right and left pillars of Solomon – the Tree of Life. In India, they are the three Gunas – Rajas fiery and active, Tamas inert and dark, and their balance which is Sattva, purity:  the Great Middle Way.   The Sattva centre card is the oracle for this exercise.   Ten days:  ten Presences.

I cannot share my Great Matter itself.  I share the creative healing work I do behind it, in the hope that it touches other Great Matters unknown to me.  And today I can share the sequence of pictures it showed me.   Rohit, I look forward to your insights on this spread! (below).   When I reached Binah, Understanding, and Hokhmah Wisdom, a friend suggested I find out about doing some social or charity work regarding abuse – the situation of parents and of children.   My oracle and practice earths itself – to stand against evil in an informed way.   We are fighters.

Here is my Sacred India Tarot Oracle on the Tree of Life.  Scroll down to the base, where I began, ten days ago;  then upward.


SITA Kether Hokhmah Binah

Binah, Hokhmah, Kether – Supernal triad

SITA Hesed Gevurah Tifareth

Tifareth, Gevurah, Hesed – soul triad

SITA Netzach, Hod, Yesod, Malkuth

Malkuth, Yesod, Hod, Netzach – the Earth and the personality triad


Malkuth is the birth of Buddha.  Yesod is the romantic Aniruddha and his bride.  Hod is Arjuna slaying Bheeshma to end the war;  the noble King Bheeshma cannot defend himself because Shikanda who stands in front of Arjuna is a woman.  Netzach is Mahavira the Hermit.  Tifareth is Buddha as King Kubera – a god of prosperity, possessing male and female energies. Gevurah is the Buddha with his young disciple Anand – he holds the traditional bowl a little beyond reach.  Hesed is King Rama suffering from self doubt.  Binah is King Rama defeating Ravanna the king of demons.  Hokhmah is the Wheel of Time and Fortune:  a turning point.  And Kether is the blessings of Babaji.

I am in awe, with what it delivers from beyond my “room”.  On the first day, I made a strong connection with Babaji, the blessings card:  the angel of the deck … and out he came this morning like the sun, the tenth day – at Kether.

Here are two paintings from around 2009, when my Great Matter was in one of its deep nadirs.  I was racked with tears and facing it.   Thread of grace … holy face.  The passion.


A post script – Rohit in his book with the deck says when Babaji comes in a reading, remove him and pull out another from the deck, at random.  Look anew at the reading in the light of all I know of Babaji.  How has the infusion of Light and Consciousness transformed the meaning of my reading, and impacted the cards already laid out?  – Use this new card for meditation.  May Babaji guide you!

I decided to turn over the top of the two remaining piles, to the right and to the left.

SITA 3 of disks, ace of lotus

Siva was the first.  He sits in front of the Himalayas with four sages at his feet.  The Buddha setting forth into adult life from the palace, determines to work with the suffering and death,  and find a Way.  This card has three wheels or chakras – Kether, Hokhmah, Binah.


“Talitha cumi
You have toiled in what was spoiled.

“With courage when snow flies in your face, shake it off. 
Close sometimes your ears to the soul’s lament.
On earth, we ourselves are Gods! – 
Adam Qadmon our completion. 

“I saw three Suns in the sky – 
Binah, Hokhmah, Kether. 
They stayed so still 
and they did not leave me.”


babaji extension scan144


Menorah, rose & candle

L’Shanah Tova.  May Shalom, the peace of Solomon be with you, in the coming year.





My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

Sacred India Tarot Archive – A Preamble to the Suit of Arrows

This post is a prelude to the Suit of Swords (Arrows) in the Sacred India Tarot Archive.  Rohit Arya works and writes in India, and I am an artist in the UK;  we began work on the project in 2001, exchanging images and ideas by email, and have not yet met!

jane in yellow field

rohit arya

Rohit’s polymath vision bridges eastern and western archetypes:  the Vedas with Jung.  His 350 page book with the deck, includes a superb introduction to Vedanta, Yoga and Indian mythology, stories and interpretations for each card, and practical advice on spreads and on maintaining the deck.  The deck is published by Yogi Impressions Books in Mumbai.  More information about The Sacred India Tarot is on facebook.


SITA 5 of Arrows - detail


Rohit Arya’s Notes, 2004

We have to use arrows instead of swords, because Indian myth is primarily an archer culture, swordsmanship being mythically of no account.  This is very strange until we realise that the samurai too were an archer-noble class until the exigencies of changing warfare made them convert to the sword.  The code of combat that the samurai nominally adhered to, was also extremely similar to the rules of combat in Indian myth. 

“In any case, arrows represent the Air element too.  I have seen some Tarot packs use this option, but basically there is no other choice if we want to operate within mythological parameters.  I will use the Bheeshma episode of the MAHABHARATHA.  The whole story is impossible.  What I like about Bheeshma is that he is epitome of the Indian ideal, not just as a warrior but also in his mode of self actualization.  He does not seem to have had a single moment of self gratification in his entire life – it was spent solely in the pursuit of duty and making others happy.  His complete surrender to and total self effacement before his social unit would seem a ghastly tragedy in modern Western terms, but it was one of the paths to spiritual realization as India understood it. 

“It cannot be said that he was completely wrong.  While he lived, only Krishna could defeat or kill him in combat;  and about his wisdom and knowledge, he was said to be another Brihaspati, the Guru of the devas.  The story of Bheeshma is a uniquely Indian success story with its strain of pathos and sentiment.  Not to have such a strand represented in our Tarot would leave it somewhat incomplete.”

SITA 10 of Arrows_Udishtara


Jane’s Notes

This was a difficult Suit for me to process, and it took a very long time to complete the drawings for it.  At one point I was so stuck and depressed, that I abandoned it and painted the Suit of Lotuses, for light relief!   However, Rohit’s interpretation of the Arrows and King Bheeshma reveals some profound psychological states.

SITA 10 of Arrows - Bheeshma


About a month ago, after completing the Suit of Lotuses in the Archive series, I began reflecting on the Arrows to come.  I wrote down some alchemical ideas around the Sword and the Flower, the way they companion the Light.

aphrodite & prince sword 1956

aphrodite & prince with sword, 1956


Jane’s Notes – 10 August 2013

Swords do not appear much in Indian mythology.  Rohit developed instead the Suit of Arrows, based on themes from the Mahabharata, the Great Poem which includes the Bhagavad Gita’s 700 lines.  The Gita – Song of God – appears like a sweet kernel within a cosmic “civil war” on earth.  Lord Krishna emerges at times of extreme world stress, to restore the Dharma, or principle of Life.   To fulfil the Law, it is inevitable to harrow and to thresh, as well as to teach.

Sword & Onion..

“You seek an absolute mentor?
You seek a forgery!
Is envy the source of your being?
Look into your onion dome.
What leaf did ever separate
your ‘I’ from centre, and grow a husk?

How she weeps now
and wails the sharp
aroma to return.”


The Swords/Arrows manifest as Karma, but as the Law they act from the World of Creation (Kabbalistically).  In olden days, the metal was forged through fire and water – the  many overlapping ‘skins’ produced a blade of great flexibility and strength.

Rarely do they appear in life harmoniously.  Yet they are the sun’s swords of light into a forest clearing.   That is their operation.   They are a play of Light.

Karma is or appears discordant, due to the stuff that was hung on that play of Light in days gone by – actions, projections, fears, as they manifest.

sword in western mythos

sword in western mythos


In the western Tarot, the Sword is the symbol ZAIN of the Lovers:  the key of sane humanity and reciprocal relationship.  It parts the tangled strands and arranges them into their proper position in consciousness.  It parts the waves.

Tarot Arcana 6:  The Lovers.  Their symbol is hebrew letter ZAIN, meaning sword or phallus.  As we all know, the field of relationship and being truthful is the most challenging!

Tarot Arcana 6: The Lovers. Their symbol is hebrew letter ZAIN, meaning sword or phallus. Graphically this letter suggests a YOD on a VAV.  As we all know, the field of relationship and being truthful is the most challenging!


Thou shalt separate
from the sensual, the radiant,
gently and with wisdom.
Thou shalt let its essence soar
into heaven’s heart
then re-enter the earthly art
Then thou shalt have the power
above as below
in root potency of things.

(Emerald Table of Hermes)


So watch the Swords and their – often painful – play of light.   A flower of knives is paradoxically the golden flower – the Lotus.  A western daffodil does the job just fine!  An adept may observe and marvel at the beauty.  I feel I am in touch with adept, but i am not an adept, which is frustrating.

A painting done in 1986.  In those days there was a great deal of pain around relationships - it felt like a "flower of knives' in the solar plexus, yet it was at the same time this yellow flower of spring.  Many years later, I found the book "The secret of the golden Flower".

A painting done in 1986. In those days there was a great deal of pain around relationships – it burned like a “flower of knives’ in my solar plexus, yet it was at the same time this yellow flower of spring. Years later, I found the book “The secret of the golden Flower”. In the background is Damehole Point near Hartland, in North Devon. A valley descends to the wild sea, from a village called Stoke.

The Body of Light is the development of a spirit-body in and as the golden flower.  When we are in our body of Light, we share the perspective;  we know each other’s individual existence and ideas, and we know the things which are connected.  We are the lens:  the eagle with a wide view of the landscape;  who detects the parting of some blades of grass, far below.

Indeed we are the Avatamsaka Tower sutra.  (see end of the linked post.) A sutra is a teaching, and it is given around a seated Buddha.  The Buddha is firmly butt on ground, surrounded by light – an energised Nature.   Watch the breath, the world go by.   Compassion to living creatures is when I am not separate from them;  the natural state or gravity is love, and to care. Polish the mundane, the windows on earth.   Remain where the window is being cleaned – for who else can do this job here and now?  Obviously, the manifestation on earth is difficult.

Sacred India Tarot page of disks - Version 2

“If a man can be absolutely quiet, then the Heavenly Heart will manifest itself.  When the feeling springs up and flows out in the natural course, the person is created as primordial creature.  This creature abides between conception and birth in TRUE SPACE.  When the One note of individuation enters into birth, essence and life are divided in two.  From this time on, if the utmost peace is not achieved, essence and life never see each other again.”

Secret of the Golden Flower translated by Jung/Wilhelm

Cup and sword


11 justice - Version 2

The Sword parts essence and life:  parts consciousness and life.  (Tarot Key 11). Peace does not belong to an individual who strives for it, meditates for it.  Peace is a common commodity.  Tuning into it by whatever means, receives the savour.  Nature won’t be hurried for the seed to crack open.

Yet alchemical work is to some extent an accelerative process.   It quickens the receptivity of the interior organs, to change.   When the Light comes in, it alters the cellular memory.  And why am I this me, not your me?

Unanswerable, because you have the same problem, the unique me surrounded by this and that.   Every Sun, Star and planet is an interior axis of rotating bodies:  a Consciousness surrounded by things.  Every cat and caterpillar has this i-see-the-world.   So I am identical to a vast Sun and a caterpillar and an atom.


A Flowering Staff - detail

A Flowering Staff – detail


The Way is practice:  keep practicing the empty capacity for everything I truly am.   Watch the road and see the Way flow into me.   Like an ocean whale, I browse the living space;  it extends beyond each ear.   My face of life is space, my consuming is space, and that which is consumed, flowing into here, is open without end, a carnival.


Daffodils in Douglas Harding, 1993

Daffodils in Douglas Harding, 1993

Conscious space is infinite, through the emotional knots which cover and obscure it.   It is very hard to choose “the open-ness” over the obscuring condition. We are conditioned into a sense of profound limitation;  this became our habit.


Sacred India Tarot 9 of Arrows - detail

Sacred India Tarot 9 of Arrows – detail





For other Sacred India Tarot posts, look under Recent Posts, or Archive of All Posts in the title bar;  or use the Search tab.

Rohit Arya

Rohit Arya is an Author, Yogi and Polymath. He has written the first book on Vaastu to be published in the West, {translated into five languages} the first book on tarot to be published in India, co-authored a book on fire sacrifice, and is the creator of The Sacred India Tarot {82 card deck and book}. He has also written A Gathering of Gods. He is  a corporate trainer, a mythologist and vibrant speaker as well as an arts critic and cultural commentator. Rohit is also a Lineage Master in the Eight Spiritual Breaths system of Yoga. 

Earlier posts about the deck, including the first 15 Major Arcana archives are in   The deck is copyrighted (c) 2011 to the publishers, Yogi Impressions Books pvt, and available also on Amazon and internationally.



My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link – see posts on Master R and his music

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

Jack in the Box


Wood Bird Yantra

Wood Bird Yantra


In reply to dear Genie’s comment yesterday – I am Inside and outside the box!  Mouni Sadhu devised a contemplation exercise:  study the interior of an empty matchbox till it can be visualised precisely and perfectly :  then study the exterior likewise, every detail.  Then try to fit the two visualisations together, seamlessly.   This practice enables us to think and perceive four-dimensionally.

That is why I love the Cube of Space as a philosophical tool;  and why I struggle to build one in the way I do.   Inside and out.

I discovered while blogging yesterday, that I had sewn the Cube’s east and west squares THE WRONG WAY ROUND!!   I let the photo stand, to demonstrate my perils, mistakes and oversights, and re-cobbled the material in the evening.   It took hours to re-sew the two squares.   I DISLIKE SEWING and all its fuss and fiddle and my sore fingers and poor eyesight.

Anyway, here is the amended construction:

Here in principle is the Rosicrucean idea – a Rose Cross to meet in every heart of Life.  I love rediscovering this, although my arts & crafts attempt is somewhat scruffy.

Unknown rosebud


I think my best posts are about my problems.  I cannot for obvious reasons draw these out in detail.   But we all share the difficulty of encountering Life, and my way isn’t more “erudite” than a musician’s with her instrument.   I use the Tree of Life and Tarot Keys as coloured lenses.  My problems are Tarot Keys of their own, permitting the essence or “template”  to appear.  It is satisfying to dwell on a circumstance – like painting a picture and gradually filling things in – until suddenly a little lever releases, and it springs into life:  a fully fledged Arcanum.

An Arcanum is an illumined collection of Mysteries.   An Arcanum is a teaching-point:  a paradox:  a living bird just air-borne.

They fly in the alchemical flask.   They are the everyday things

An illustration from Alexander Roob's Alchemy & Mysticism

An illustration from Alexander Roob’s Alchemy & Mysticism


I decided to follow up “But … there is Hope in the Well”  with  “Along the Lane”;  as I rode my bike onward into the map last week, after bumping into the light.   But materialising my Cube of space, comes in between!

To cut another long story short – I accompanied Jack to Burnt Oak mental hospital yesterday, for him to pick up some pills.  He flushes them down the loo, as they are poisonous: they cause diabetes and worse, and carry the Elf & Safety warning.  But psychiatry’s hoops and loops are navigated as prescribed.   The E U is slicing disability benefits again, while the House of Lords – so one hears – spends £100,000 on redecorating the lavatory.  I feel the fear and distress of disabled persons all over the land.  Briefly … Jack has to play the game objectively, and supply Caesar’s pence – an object exercise to respond not as an ego, but as a statistic:  it is the form.   Inside the form is a crippling anxiety.  Inside the building is a nightmare of contagious fear.   The patients pace up and down the cage, waiting to be administered their poisons and bangs on the head, and sent off home again. Drugs, fear, clinical dysfunction, human degradation and the cheery cleaners – I felt sick.

When in panic, when boxed in, do something practical to earth it.   We went back to his house and began to fill up the renewal form for disability parking – overdue, and by now gone toxic. The local authority’s labyrinthian call centre was clapped to poor Jack’s left ear – we ended up laughing.   The tension changed and settled.   Slowly I remember, again:  Befriend the situation – any in life – adapt, soften with it.  Be sly.   Smile.   Deep inside, the way through is known:  just do it, step by step.





I went home and spent the evening re-doing the Cube’s east and west.  I am like Johannes Kepler with his ‘dear and diligent readers‘ – each error in his planetary calculus is enthusiastically shared, as integral to eventual triumphs.


JA JK Synastry

My natal Seal of Solomon – lode-star –  is In the astrology synastry with him.  And look at the mutual lunar-nodes Grand Cross!  And the Uranus-Neptune, Jupiter-Uranus conjunctions …  and his Midheaven on my Ascendent.  In my present life, I studied astrology intensively under his tuition and inspiration:  his music of the spheres, is mine also.

Yet I can’t have been Kepler in a previous life, if I was romping around with Simon Forman in London at the same period (said to be).  I may have known Kepler selectively on the inner and subtle planes.  He was a Capricorn, and so was S.F.  We human beings are mind-stuff.  The solidified texture we move within, and have our being and our stress, is a temporary facet of the world.  We do move freely in and out of each others’ soul, according to affinity, once we attain the gift to realise it conscientiously.

Did we but know !  It is timeless.  It is unfettered by storybook sequential incarnations in space and time.  I may visit Kepler or Master R any moment, if I draw together the vessel to catch the dew, and concentrate.  AFFINITY happens.   The Great Work, and all spiritual endeavour, consists in learning to travel Consciously in the planes and levels.   That means, to quieten and harness my headstrong I-thought process.  And so, freed from the unconscious barrage of the Netzach Hod Yesod merrygoround … a gentle amusement self-defines.  Reality emerges from the mist into shining bas-relief:  clarity.  In Malkuth which is Earth and Tifareth which is Consciousness, Kether the Divine thread stands tall like a Sequoia pine:  the sky within.   Perhaps group ritual work and worship boils down to this.

Young love & Mum


The Buddha is said to remember all his myriad lives, because the personalized dream doesn’t stand in front, obscure or apparently separate any of them.   And so the Avatamsaka Sutra has countless towers of individual Infinity:  the trees in the forest, each unique, and each containing the boundless forest.   This is life!   This is the countless incarnations!    When I am lost in my mouse-scurry, I see none of it.


conference of neuroses '87


A friend who blows wonderful coloured glass, writes long posts almost every day – well, at least 3 times a week, like I did last year.   We of the Illumined – who are stained-glass windows – cannot stop writing, ever.   We let in the light;  It writes us.    I write every day a trans-formation, and blog a few little things from it, which I hope might be useful.  I begin in the morning stiff and foggy, and I feel the muscle warm up, open and loosen, as the interior sun comes out.   It is the same as going for an early run, or a ride.

The musical tone in my mind this morning – I checked on the pitch-pipe –  is INDIGO – A-natural:  Saturn.   Saturn’s tattva or sense of touch, is AKASHA – keeper of the cosmic records:  cosmic memory.

Now, here is the Avatamsaka Sutra.  It is in one of my bog’s earliest posts – no harm in repeating it.   It is an Invocation for Life:


“THE TOWER is as wide and spacious as the sky itself.

“The ground is paved with (innumerable) precious stones of all kinds, and there are within the Tower (innumerable) palaces, porches, windows, staircases, railings and passages, all of which are made of the seven kinds of precious gems …

“And within this Tower, spacious and exquisitely ornamented, there are also hundreds of thousands … (innumerable) of Towers, each one of which is as exquisitely ornamented as the Tower itself, and as spacious as the sky.

“And all these Towers, beyond calculation in number, stand not at all in one another’s way;  each preserves its individual existence in perfect harmony with all the rest;  there is nothing here which bars one Tower from being fused with all the others, individually and collectively;  there is a state of perfect intermingling, and yet of perfect orderliness.

 “Sudhana, the young pilgrim, sees himself in all the Towers, as well as in each single Tower, where all is contained in One and each contains all.”

 Paraphrase by Suzuki
from the Buddha’s AVAMTAMSAKA SUTRA


Jim Ede with Gaudier's Bird swallowing a Fish

Jim Ede with Gaudier’s Bird swallowing a Fish





My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

aquariel link

All art and creative writing in this blog is copyright © Janeadamsart 2012. May not be used for commercial purposes. May be used and shared for non-commercial means with credit to Jane Adams and a link to the web address

Bardo – a Buddha-atom Awakes

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What is Bardo?

My understanding of this word, in the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying is:  a state of becoming:  the passage of a change upon the unchanging, as in the I Ching.  Bardos are moments of consciousness.  The dead pass through portals which are bardos, towards the full unveiling of their heart in the moment of their lifetime.  The essence of that life  – like a bubble – is extracted as consciousness, whose quality seeds a future birth.   It is considered helpful for the living to “companion” them in this process.  I believe many of us do so without realising it, in strange moments of awareness.

My favourite photo of Mount Kailas, the sacred home of Siva and Parvati.  Kailas is in Tibet, just north of the Gharwal Himalayan whence the Ganges flows.   The photo in the frame is Marisa at about five years old.

My favourite photo of Mount Kailas, the sacred home of Siva and Parvati. Kailas is in Tibet, just north of the Gharwal Himalayan whence the Ganges flows. The photo in the frame is Marisa at about five years old.  In her teens, she expressed a desire to go to Kailas, but I think this will remain for us a dream!

In this post I would like to share extracts from a Buddha awakening in my journal, early 1988.   I didn’t open it for many years, but the Sacred India Tarot archive work directed me to it.  I had planned to quote just a few images from it, to go in my previous post, SITA 8,9,10 of Pentacles;  but as usual, there is rather more to it than I thought.   Additionally – it happened over my birthday:  I had forgotten this.  

Although pruned right down, I regret it is still a long post, a small book in itself – the anatomy of an awakening – but make of it what you will.

I publish it also, to “companion” in my soul, the recent death – at nearly 94 – of my childhood hero.   I didn’t meet him in this lifetime, but he was interested in Buddhism and the Himalayas, and so this awareness is my Bardo for him, as it turns, as he passes on.   He had to keep still for an extraordinary period of time, and he lived through his death when he was young.  A fellow sun-goat, moon-crab, he was born on 15 January 1919, and passed away in his sleep on 13.12.12.   He will go into the ground for this week’s Solstice.  He was a public figure, and many consider that he “invented” at least a part of his remarkable story.  For me however, his inner life and its expression – like snow “burned off” a mountain peak – was authentic, and felt like myself. It deeply influenced my path when I was 12 years old.  

The drama, and how we manipulate our version of it is –  for us all – a question mark:  life’s carousel, a thread in the overall design;  a way of the Will.  May you pass in peace, through the veils undoing, to the weighing of the heart.   Go well.



The Honeycomb Cells of Karma

In January 1988, I did some chanting with a nichiren soshu buddhist neighbour.  I heard her in the early mornings upstairs, and at first I thought it was something in the water pipes.  I went up to see what was going on, and joined in with her.  It felt great, to make this deep voice together, to let it vibrate up my spine-stem.  It was very much needed.

bees j&d6 

I discovered through it, the Lotus sutra teachings.  I soon left the nichiren practice, whose militancy I didn’t agree with.   I had studied a little Hermetic philosophy, but not yet come upon Kabbalah/the Tree of Life.  

The vision was experiential, a “catch-up” with other lifetimes in the practice.   I was being led to awaken soul memories.  I find in it a clarity of how the mind works as a Karmic microcosm.  For me the understanding was a turning point.  Afterwards, I noticed that negative responses from life and people to me had dropped dramatically.

First, here is a gallery – a set of 12 drawings done all at once.  Afterwards I read the Buddha’s teaching on the Twelve Causes – Ignorance, Action, Consciousness, Name & Form, the Six Entrances (sense organs), Contact, Sensation, Desire, Clinging, Existence and Old age/Grief/Death/Suffering.  They fitted pretty well with my drawing sequence.  The sequence follows the natural order of any thought or incarnation. The first two were done with my eyes closed, and the rest are with my left hand.

To enter the gallery, click on the first image, and wait for it to upload.



11 January 1988 – Karma and The Honeycomb

“To draw is to travel in line an act of faith, which releases Reality.”

It is odd – and delightful – how self’s vantage can change.  Know thyself as a grouping or receptacle for that of life which flows in.  If I’m bad or frightened, I’m a room for that which is bad or frightening, and which reproduces those waves in the life cycle.  So when the bad and the fright have been seen – through analysis, insight or practice – well, that is how self moves into another receptive aggregate.  This means I am not an ego, lighthouse or mast, but a vessel for different kinds of weather.  I attract different Karmas to breed, according to the nature of my magnetic “iron-filings” (mars).  This is a glimpse of the awake consciousness factor in last week’s 12-fold causal chain of life.

Life is attracted through the phenomenon of “cosmic” desire, to those imprinted forces of Karma which require existence, sentience and voice.  There are many such different rooms in each sentient human being.  “Re-birth” is the activating of these rooms whose “iron-filings” attract the energies of light, joy and response.  This happens through the transforming of those rooms which attract the dark and the panic.  If they are not transformed, the dark clouds will stick to them and to the light, like a bat to a window.  Dark is attracted to light, it wraps and conceals it.  The light doesn’t go out.  It is hidden in the cells of the honeycomb.

So my principle is to first explore the nature of the dark, and its sensations, and teach those sensations to cease re-acting.

It is a vessel for all kinds of weather.  Weather is closely bonded to areas of the earth, in the ecological ‘society’ cycle.  To change the earth-body – to garden it differently – is to bring about a different climate in this area.  That is what is meant by Jung’s movement of the seat of self … (and Casteneda’s movement of the assemblage-point.)

Line dance 4.1.88

Line dance 4.1.88


A little more Lotus Sutra last night.  Shakyamuni Buddha is still widening his listeners’ ears, and hasn’t really started to preach yet.  But I began the chapter on the Treasure Tower.  Tao Buddha has arrived in it to listen to the sutra – Consciousess has arrived, not mere life – so I guess Shakyamuni will start talking now.  You cannot receive the Lotus sutra unless you are a conscious receptacle, wanting it.  Shakyamuni already said, Don’t make offerings to him, make them to the teachings.  So I suppose he’s prepared his ground, what next?  In the allegory of the participation of all the thousands of worlds, all the rooms of his listeners are activated, all the implanted jewels are bursting into flower.

Line dance 2

Line dance 2

Light while it reacts – as in birth-to-life or creative higgledy piggledy – is still dark.  Light which responds and allows information to rest in it, is of quite a different nature – not anxious.  … To understand more of the Law of Life, new senses – or buried senses – have to be awakened and developed.

I see a tree as a tree, but I do not know what else I see.  The forces of attraction and generation antecede birth and sentience.  Soul looks at the room;  Karma is attracted to the vessel – the eternal aggregate glimpses its depository.   I am only at theoretical level, yet just able to catch sight.   This is very wonderful.  Keep asking.”

line dance 3 - 4.1.88

line dance 3 – 4.1.88


A Lopped Tree

My room changed when the tree’s head was cut off.  A tree is a tree.
This tree’s stumps claw the sky, and new life grows within them.
The sky falls into the space which the foliage once filled.
Wait for the Spring.

Wait for the season of growth.
All answers in its due time.
To see a tree without a head
and know that in this is life, sap and shoots;

to take this into my body and see my soul rise in joy –
I know not why –
from the shadow impression of pain
is to know in that moment the Law of Life;  Cause and Effect are concurrent.

Effect is cause
and fall.

Nature opens.  Who art thou?
The shepherdess tells me
it’s not time yet.
Love not sufficiently grown from sex.

Seeker & Sheperdess

Seeker & Sheperdess


The Underbeing is perceived these days in terms of the entity looking for a way in to the dream which is Life, and the study of its causal chain or grouping.  My eternal-life is a creature who is groping and not quite awake among the doors and cubes.  It is through the slow enlightenment of this passage between lives, that I will come to find the eye into my history;  principle of faith, not intellect.  Intellect is but a cooperative muscle among many.  I am looking for a way in to the Dream which is me.  Life as known is but garlands of Dreams.  Who is it then, who wanders from shore into that land or sea, and begins to string those garlands together?  Who wanders across the darkness, lit by desire?  Desire and love is the first opening into life.  Food, then people and trees.  Loyalty.


Sacred India Tarot

Sacred India Tarot

I’m not interested in my physical environment until my inner garden begins through its tendrils, to connect to it.  I do an active meditation into my inner, that she may begin to alter the outer.

The outer is not yet housework but people, my friends.  Moira in Waitrose coffee-shop – talking about problems in the top flat.  The tenant there treats it as a warehouse and flits in and out of the barn.  The result is vermin and problems with overflowing water and decreasing house value when he’s away.

I no longer have to tell people about my faith and my journey.  The principle – its purpose is to provide a vessel for peoples’ positives to fall into;  this cheers them up.  Happiness (relative) is expression – the time of day, the imprint of their own moment of integrity, their smile across the table, they move on this.

They illuminate mine too.  Listen to the world, and the trans-forming goes on.  Elicit strength, not catastrophe.  I do not reject another’s catastrophe, but I seek it less.
(However, I have not quite learnt to talk to my daughter about her father in broad and non-catastrophic terms.  The pain still billows and makes me tense.)

To wish other people happiness, health and connection isn’t much good while there are shadows in my Karma.  These shadows might transfer to them and give them a difficult time towards happiness and straightness.  Physic, heal thyself!


Drawer 1987

Open room, open door, open drawer for good Karma and Life Law to manifest, open this drawer in my middle, let it resonate and catch the growing things, that is how it Does.

Ask the Law of Life for a little clarification as to this honeycomb room, the cells of Karma, and the process of activating some and not others.   The Law of Life embodies all the laws of dark and light.   It unifies them, so that the dark laws, the negative being an intrinsic part of the high-relief landscape, are transformed, converted, activated to the overall cause.  They become recognised differently.

I do not understand these dark laws very well, except that they are there.  The choice following analysis is to transform them so they are not re-active, but responsive to the over-all.  A hypnotic incantation takes root.   Law of Life, why not?   Invest strength in this.

It is true, that as my father says, life doesn’t want Consciousness.  They collide at a right-angle.  Consciousness wants to sing the law of life.  Life wants to stop – is aware of time – and write about it, or do things.  Life’s ways on top, are very strong.  Life finds Consciousness a bit boring – needs to get on with conditioned-responses across the dark voids, and holding the fabric of green reality together.   But life gradually incorporates BITS of Consciousness … not overnight.

Consciousness to receive the Lotus into Life.  The teaching of the Lotus is the spreading of a great wide space or stillness in the mind;  something comes in which is not grasped by the mind.  Intellect-chatter flourishes – I am not silent – but under it, these things have room to happen.

Room for thee, thou vast flower.  Buddha nature arrives unseen, and makes the garden.


Law of Life 2 with dharma wheel

January 14 1988 – Age 39 today.

Slight nadir state, because of failure-to-communicate-to-life.   Marion Milner rang up very early, and said she felt we had not managed to exchange something yesterday which was of importance to me in my drawings …

(I imploded at that point.  I had just visited and met for the first time, my mentor Marion Milner then in her 90s, whose books on exploring the inner fact, guided and helped me.  When she invited me to tea, I was overwhelmed by her creativity and bold ways with scissors and paste, to cut up all her hundreds of drawings and paintings, her children, and make them into new pictures.  It was a Karmic shock, and I felt very insecure.  And she was too old to take my wares and needs on board.   She was trying to tidy up “before she pops orff.”)

Solstice Ring-a-Rosies

Solstice Ring-a-Rosies


I had a problem in the prayer for the dead.  I don’t know many dead people:  Mam, Auntie Appelonia, the Adamses, Mrs Higgins – all of a ripe old age and ready … to what purpose?  And persons in accident or war.  I was told that great benefit comes from influencing the latency of dead souls.

So I prayed and chanted for those I have loved in previous lives, who died – whoever they may be.

Yesterday the feeling began to come – of looking down into this dark, pregnant, cared-for ocean of the Dead.

Today I have it.  The need is to pray for a lost, dead and much-loved child of mine – to give him life, strength and good Karma.   Marion gave me this prayer-bead.   Marion’s litter of paintings and collages are her children, piled all over the house like autumn leaves.

Grief 18.1.88

Grief 18.1.88

I dreamed I took two shopping trolleys to Father Alan Cheales’s mass for the children.  One of these contained Christianity.  The other contained Buddhism.  Alan’s mass or mess was a scatter of people.  I sat down.  There was a woman with white hair, who I thought was Mrs Higgins, knowing she was dead, but then I saw she was someone else.  F. Alan comes to supper next week.  Was this place in my dream the place of the dead?   Who is Miss Tree?  MISTER E?  Mystery!

… My birthday.  7.30pm nearly, that is when my soul Karma is born.  Out to tea with Tara, very drunk, chanted with her, she’s got a sun on her butsudan, grapefruit surrounded by oranges.  Only he who sees takes off his shoes, the rest sit around and pick blackberries –  (Jesuit in 1976). Saw Eduardo the shrink outside coffee-shop in West End Lane, made hi kiss my birthday – sweet swine, so interested in The Creative Process … Tara said maybe I should tell Eduardo to get himself some therapy.

Malo Malo, my sweet astral child from between the stars, THOU ART DOING!  and consciousness is buddha nature coming unseen to read hear the Sutra.

Well I don’t think I shall try to read the Sutra just yet.

My mother rang.


Incarnations - cosmic fishes

Incarnations – cosmic fishes

There are many, many worlds and lives everywhere all round, like all those shreds and floats of sketches I saw yesterday at Marion Milner’s.  Like leaves in a pool – like an explosion.

There is also the Goodness! A Tishoo! feeling of an enormous uplifting current which displaces moments of time, so there is a sensuously perceived space between and around each tick of the clock, and space around each word.  This is, I believe, the body’s primitive perception of when the conditioned world fragments for a few seconds – it blasts apart – into an intimation of Reality below it.  Each tick of time is a planet or world, and stops.   This sensation came at moments, over the years.

I think now it is something to do with the 3,000 worlds in a moment’s coexistence, the mutually interwoven Stories of Life.

There’s a bed with a dark man with a hat looking down on it.  I can’t sleep tonight because my top-mind is busy throwing out wine – Tara poured me two huge glasses – and with the setting of the Lotus Sutra Law, and the ever expanding Ganges sands of bodhisattvas.  Nearly to chapter 16 – the actual teaching.


the Law

15 January 1988

I read it.  The Law of Life in chapter 16 – the Life of the Tathagata – is this:  it is not told.  It is the activated Cause for its implantation in the listener:  single mindedly yearning to see Buddha … (in the 12-fold causal chain.)  It is DESIRE – the nature of all Nature being pulled in unison to the vessel of its fulfillment.  This process is awakened within the voice, within the body.

Shakyamuni Buddha’s device is to reveal the impossibility of calculating the time of his own beginning as Buddha.  A Kalpa is the out and in breath of the Tathagatha – from big bang to reabsorbtion.  Inconceivable aeons, billions of kalpa groups, are ground to single particles of dust, which are then dropped one by one at temporally incomprehensible intervals into eternity, to pave the path of history.

This infinite revelation seems to have an effect on sentient cells – to cause them to recognise their own participation in the otherwise indescribable Law of Life.  It causes goodess in the way the river flows, and wisdom, gentleness and reverence in human beings, towards their fellows in life, in the animal and in the awakened kingdoms.

First he shook the earth, and all those ancient and uncountable legions of bodisattvas sprang out of it.  How, if he’d been enlightened for just forty years, did these infinite multitudes emanate from him, how were they led by him?   This he then revealed.

I don’t know why Inifinity activates goodness.  It just does:  awe and reverence and most importantly, faith in the food of being alive.

To glimpse this only starts the change.  It isn’t enlightenment itself.  Enlightenment is when these things become second nature in the vessel, and are apparent to others.  When they are not apparent, they are not yet.  The intellectual activity is not of these.  Not coercion, but obeisance to the slow Law of growth and fruit.

Life is made of laws on top of laws which are not what they seem:  the pregnant void.  But this concept is an intellectualism.  It is not something which I know.  It is a nature which acts on me.  I still conceptualize it, I the bird in its lap.   Last night when I nearly managed to sleep, I found the inner voice of its own accord recited bits of the Lotus Sutra chant by heart.  My life-state doesn’t know any of it by heart yet – hasn’t the nerve.

In Buddha’s parable of the good physician, he uses his own death or Nirvana as an expedient to inspire healing through grief and loss.  If my loved-one had come last year, I don’t think I would have valued him nearly as much as I valued him because he was absent.  It pushed me to grow.

Snowdrops, fox and owl_2


Latency feel today – tired and lazy.  Began to doze – I am in fall – I became again some long slender stem on a cliff, a stem growing at both ends at a tremendous rate both up and down – root and shoot – heaven and earth, strange purity;  and a fat flower somewhere near.  Also a bit of A Tishoo.  A Tishoo is stop the world.  Then mind gets busy again with its usual phenomena.

Three “Draws”:

The crumbs of the universe its extinction will dissolve ...

The crumbs of the universe its extinction will dissolve …

Crumbs of the Universe.  The baby bird mouth is life.  In the lap, space becomes I which cannot see.  No eyes anywhere – don’t want to draw.  Mind underneath, is the moon and three stars – the Sun to the left:  a most extraordinary energy, apparently without beginning.   Void are the fragments, the crumbs which come to the bird.  Each crumb is an existence, experience of I-world.

Death's bed

Next:  the bed and the dark stranger – a Chinaman I think, because of his hat – beside it.  The bed is a four poster and looks like it is walking.  Curtain and three different symbols, one on top of each post – circle, corinthian and triangle.  This one is about Death.

Sunflower above below

Next:  the long stem with flower growing at both ends, roots in the middle, on top of Karma cliff.  Misty sea and boat, different wave patterns, further down they are wider.  Fragments of what? in the air.  A dark eye-pull flower-explode, bottom left corner.  Life AND death I suppose.  There’s a person curled up in Karma cliff and a sort of volcanic uprush.  Stop-world.


Alchemy is “grind, sift and mix.”  To grind is to reduce the herbs to insubstantiality.  To sift is to separate and differentiate.  To mix together is the integrating of the first two stages, and thus the Great Middle Way.

Apple is Fruit of knowledge, or love without any core.  Star is infinity, and an owl is wisdom and watch-it.  Oh yes, and “Lovers Knot” – see 12-fold Cause drawings, the one called “Birth”) – is “Lovers Not”, because they are choosing Consciousness, not just the life cycle.  Oh dear, does this mean my sex life really and truly has come to an end?

… Sacrifices to the gods in Homer’s Iliad – I love to read of the sheeps thighs wrapped in fat and burnt, the lovely savour – are feasts which the celebrants share with the gods and enjoy the food.  So when they are burning a good fragrance to Apollo and Athena, they activate their own good cells and life-channels, as the community eats, so as to attract the life-currents.  Cause is alignment of sensation.

Ros Bieber came with a birthday card of a drunken Elephant and a book of Chinese short stories, and threw me into confusion with the Freudian view …  … I am writing to my song, my soul, my afterlife, my between-life, all this community of the hidden history … the rhythms of my life within their (your) great dark dwelling, my Malo-child (astral-creative shadow) was born alive.

soul berthing - 6.1.88

soul berthing – 6.1.88


Loyalty to life and to a shared reality, comes out from somewhere between the worlds.  When I glimpse something of what lies between worlds – as for instance when I am depressed, disconnected and non-functioning, like yesterday – it makes this planet a little more dear to me.  Welcome home:  unity of spirit embodied.  As do glimpses of eternity.  This is how one becomes a buddhist and learns to value life, no longer wishing to quarrel.  Life is the leaves of the Underbeing, and welcomes me back.  I can’t see why people should disagree if they have the faith which grows on this tree.

Break Ice – 17 January 1988

It seems that hands start to touch which were implanted in last fall’s drawings.  Things join, as coats of Karma are shed.  To share is life;  not to share is death, enclosed by destiny’s garment.  My drawing for Ros last night, started last night as a don’t-know, and isn’t turning out as expected.  I didn’t have a plan, except not to use my private code symbols in it.

Hades and Chinaman

Hades and Chinaman

It is about breaking the ice and thus a shared reality.  The Chinaman is in it, as a wisdom-man or death.  Death as advisor has a shepherd’s crook.  One part of his coat is dark with the grain of the river or sands, and the other part is Light, this opening.  The drawing is branched by left and right hands touching across it.  The left, as if out of ice or through broken glass, has a consciousness-kraken in it – a deformed man or blind baby gropes up through the glass case to release.  The right has a person in it, and is a lifting force.  The Chinaman death-life is the transformer;  our connection.  To the left is a bird with lifted wings, and the sun.   Ros has a lot of heavy Karma and repetitive-strain injury, so I don’t know what she will see in it;  but her own home begins to implant peace and her victory.

A time comes when I activate my darker suffering-world or container, in order to transform it – when the light-principle is strong.   The important thing this weekend is to touch and share with others, to leave go my foot-holds, knowing at last they are there, and will receive me again.  My helpers gave me life.  So does death.

Break ice.  In a Chinese story, the water under ice is Yin or the feminine unconscious, and the world above ice is Yang, or male conscious.  I found this later, after beginning the drawing for Ros, and thinking it was about glass.  So … I’ll stick a few bits of newsprint on it for a change…   Breaking glass or window is a desire for life through the pane.

Tenancy  – 21 January 1988

I dreamed I was moving back into the flat in Greencroft Gardens where Marisa was born.  The neighbouring flat was neglected and needed care and occupancy – the thrill of new space and how to live in it.  I’m a tenant of a block of flats.  Am I a tenant of someone’s body?   How large rooms are when they are empty.  This one was enlarged or widened since I was last here.  The previous tenant left something on the stove – a large wide container with a little jar inside it, containing an inch of something that looks like bovril or date syrup.  The flame is on underneath:  I turn it off.  Gas taps.  A door behind, leads into a whole extension or scullery of the kitchen;  in this room is what used to be, in my dreams, the sealed room.  It is now sealed no more.  The wall’s been knocked down.   But it isn’t liveable in;  it is full of useless structure, like old airing cupboards or a water tank, and there are clusters of timber-and-wattle along the walls, raw substance within plaster, like nerve or muscle groups – or the multiple wiring clusters inside an airplane’s cockpit.  They are all disused.  The roof over it is naked;  no ceiling.  I see gaps in the tiles, the rain will come through.  There’s no room for life in this part which used to be sealed.  All it gives is space for cosmic lumber.  Am I to be responsible for the roof?    How can Marisa and myself fit in here?   Indignation, I want to hold on to my home with four rooms, the present one!

Later on, I was asked by a buddhist woman with long hair and a big nose, to participate in and commit myself in some Activity (communal).  “No, no!” I wailed, rather hysterical.  “I’ve got to get where I live sorted out first!”  Where do I belong?   Panicking, no money.

Karma-frame:  am I going into a confined mess again?  But to dream about occupying new or occupied flats, is the self-knowledge of Karma entering life-form – the reactive containers of life – and not knowing if I shall fit into this body which has been vacated for me;  trying to plan my occupancy, knowing I’ve come down on the scale, nostalgic for what I’ve left.   For I am hovering in the realm of the causal chain of existence, hovering over the many boxes of life, wondering which one is me.  Settling gradually like an insect, looking for the scent of sweet.

At source-point are Karmic responsibilities.  If the pattern is recognised and responded to here, upstream (like from higher up the hill), it does not merely react to the “flats”.  It changes them.  No longer am I a victim in destiny, but a rowing partner (boat).  To affect these energies at source, is to affect them NOW;  so they do not need or have cause to proliferate their repetitive dismay in terms of body-life and the wings and falls of fortune.

All phenomena of life and consciousness being inter-related, each moment or problem/position is a potential birth of my soul.

Buddha and Osmosis

Buddha and Osmosis

The soul is that which awakens within the nerve-structure of Karma, and recognises the continuity of this sentence to Earth.  The soul cherishes the vessels of life as they rise to perception, recognising how these are imprinted by the dark and light of consciousness.

I have no wish to persuade people to become buddhists.  Whatever they recognise and awake, is sufficient to them.

What is my need today?  To pray to Jesus.  Jesus is what was given of God to humanity – (and damaged.)  To pray to and within the Law of Life is an incredible blessing, but it appears to me just now, as so vast and “inhuman” a concept, like a wilderness of aeons, I begin to see what it implies, and would like a friendly human-form god to relate to, to praise, thank and confide my fears.


Alan Cheales O.P. 1985

Father Alan’s Visit

Father Alan came last night.

We chatted a lot but not “much”, because he’s not on my wavelength with the new drawings, he doesn’t like them.   But he called me “single-minded” and himself a priest who cannot be “single-minded”, much as he’d like to, because he’s got all these duties in life.  However, we “saw” each other and exchanged something.  We are fond of each other, and Alan isn’t a proselytizer.  I did eventually inform him that I was practicing Buddhism, and he said I’d chosen a good moment for my announcement, because this week is the Church’s Ecumenical week, and how does Buddhism relate to Christianity?  I said for me it developed from it and is the same thing – Buddha even told the same parables – because wherever in history people awake, it is to the same bedrock truth.    I said I found my faith easier to practice on a day-long basis in Buddhism than in Christianity, because in Christianity there is a feeling of remoteness or separateness, even with him, Alan, getting us all to join in.

Alan knows a little about Hermetic philosophy.  He says he knows nothing, but I suspect he knows more than I do.  He said the Hermetic writings discovered in AD 400 were absolutely authenticated.  I’ve always thought of Alan as a scholar, but he does have to spread his mind over a lot of people.  He is still enjoying Speakers Corner, said he might use a thing or two I’d said when he’s there next week.  I said I learn from everyone I meet.  We had a super bolognese which I cooked, Alan said it was the best he’d ever tasted.  He went up to see Marisa, who was rather busy. He told me again he saw Mr V (her father) outside his house cleaning his car, and Mr V stared at him.  Alan dislikes Mr V because he “lives on an island” and Alan has no room for his brilliant mind, he sees Mr V as destructive, marooned and a manufacturer of grief, and he has no time for people who waste their lives in this way.

Alan has forgotten that he himself received me into the church.  “Did I instruct you?”  Being received (just before Marisa’s birth) I said, was being received into the family, and a very wonderful thing for me.     I meant – being received into Life.  That is what it was – life and my baby girl.  Catholicism awakened in due course my depth reality.  It is still a “father”!  Hello, Alan Cheales.

He says in his sermons, no amount of darkness can put out a candle.  To begin with, we discussed manic depression and homosexuality a lot, because Alan had been watching TV, and has a gay nephew.  “Hermetic” later, made Alan talk about the Gnostics, and a programme about them which covered too much ground to be more than superficial – the media can barely outline the matter – but was interesting.  We ended the evening by agreeing that many atheists have more faith than believers, because it is faith in oneself, in life, which is the fundamental principle “and too many catholics,” said Alan “don’t put life into their faith.”

A religious habit or security doesn’t “cross the gap”.  God’s house is often full of empty routines.   Christianity is really an enormous challenge;  Buddhism practices within the gap.  My faith needed a lot of strong branches to hold.  Alan recommended Monica Furlong on Thomas Merton for me to read, “but Thomas Merton is more of an Ascetic than you are!”

The Sermon on the Mount was the Buddha’s cause-and-effect Law of Life.

Priest and Oak 2000


23 January 1988I Hear The Buddha Sound

Dreams are active vacuum-beds or “tea-cups”.  They attract questions, energies, and whatever strata of life is of key interest at the moment.  It depends on the eye which sees and lets them exist.  I dreamt I was returning to my house, and found to my great annoyance, that the builders had been and lowered the level of the outside stairway so that to walk under it to the alleyways you had to crouch.  I moved aside the zig zag screens around their work, and went into the changed space.  I hated it.  I couldn’t move or walk properly.  The enclosure was menacing, difficult and claustrophobic, like the passages I have to crawl through to be born – even though it was only a couple of yards, with daylight at both ends.  My centre of gravity was disarrayed and immobilized.  I didn’t progress, but complained – like Alice when she grew too tall.

(I was stuck at birth – deep transverse arrest.)

born to be free - lotus root

born to be free – lotus root

I suppose this is how soul feels when it gets into a body, are there going to be forceps next?   What a drag!   Perhaps … the work of alignment – easing into the new shape I must spread into.

Climbing out - second birth

Climbing out – second birth

The value, I think, of relating to Karma at its “source” or historic point, rather than to its present-day life-event form of repetition, is that it gives it energy and sentience at an earlier level.  Thus it doesn’t need to feel itself by repeating its difficulties in the present day phenomena.  To let them resonate in the subtle-creative spectrum, catalyzes them there in consciousness.  They don’t then have to reverberate into obstacles or horrible anxiety-creating problems now.   My studies help me to remove anxieties from my daily life, by allowing them to express and map themselves further back – at a sort of source-point.

When the knot is seen and interpreted from my true level of Reality, it doesn’t have to reflect into my life situation.  It is allowed growth and change, at the root.

In the dream about L’s wife with black curly hair, there is a feel of space having been cleared, as on a windy day – in relation to him, as to everyone else.  My bad Karma always expressed itself in terms of jealousy, isolation and the discomfort of ego’s performances.  Ego-problem there is in the dream, but not jealousy.  Not any more.  The freedom is implied, to move around and be real.

Splendid dream, at some time before or after these … which I cannot describe, as it was in another level altogether, but was in terms of being the actual Law of Life in the line-movement and shade of a drawing.  As I half woke, I heard a most extraordinary and wonderful note or cosmic tone, of the Universal Eternity.  It was outside time.  It rested and passed and faded like the long-resonating song of a bell.

This turned out to be a passing lorry – every sound in all the worlds is the primordial atomic OM, and liberates for ever.

Another vehicle or two gave a remnant of this Voice, as did long tides of bliss in my being-body, but I was rapidly surfacing, so it was for an unending moment only.  How good.  Surely I will find it for ever.


Sacred India Tarot - Siva tests Parvati with a Mask

Sacred India Tarot:  Siva tests Parvati with a mask.  They are very near Kailas.



In the Buddha teaching, no individual awakes, becomes enlightened, dies or is reborn.  The event occurs through a confluence of “aggregates” – clusters of Karmic potential – which flower.  The event is one of many, and it happens all the time as Life – but we mostly don’t notice it.

The “I” for working purposes, is the tendency of life to become coherent – an apparent individual –  and to adopt congenial memories as its own.   Sometimes the memory thread stretches back in vivid recall through many a birth, identifying with many a period in history.  The Buddha is said to have recalled all the aeons of Consciousness since the big bang kalpa and inconceivable aeons before … as NOW.   But it is still a creation of the mind.   Whose mind?

A Buddha-nature enlightenment is a subatomic interaction – a disintegration in an energy-field whence several new particles – the sacrament released – are born.

It is sacred. Every expansion of Consciousness is the sacrament.

I thought at the time I was enlightened, but of course “I” wasn’t!  The particles are still approaching mutual harmony.  

What I call the God-cosm, prevails.   The enlightenment itself is a constant.  It is Reality.




My adventure invites fellow travellers.  I am a poet, an artist and a seer.  I welcome conversation among the PHILO SOFIA, the lovers of wisdom.

This blog is  a vehicle to promote also my published work – The Sacred India Tarot (with Rohit Arya, Yogi Impressions Books) and The Dreamer in the Dream – a collection of short stories (0 Books). Watch this space.

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