Maps of Life on the Tree

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Collecting here a few handy maps of the Tree, I plan to rest the blog for a few days, as I go to a family celebration of my father being now 90.

Fore and aft my journey with the Chakras and the Tree, I savour my parental “human landscapes” (see earlier posts.)  They are the left and right pillars in my Tree.  They form the arch where through I enter “that untravel’d world whose margin fades, For ever and for ever as I move.”  (Tennyson)

Next week I shall resume and complete the story of Siva and Parvati in the Sacred India Tarot Archive.  Also, a Watershed tale, called “The Lens”.

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Tree of life, showing the BOTA tarot keys on the 22 paths

Tree of life, showing the BOTA tarot keys on the 22 paths

This shows where the Tarot Keys are placed on the Tree, between the 10 Sefiroth.  Around the top of each Sefira is written its type of Intelligence.   Each Tarot Key/Path has its own Intelligence also.  For instance, Tarot Key 21 the World is called “the Administrative Intelligence”.  Tarot Key 19 the Sun is called “the Collecting Intelligence”.  Tarot Key 18 the Moon is called “the Corporeal Intelligence”. The Magician – Key 1 – is “the Intelligence of Transparency”. To learn more, contact B.O.T.A.org

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This illustration shows my old Hermetic Tarot arcana (drawn in 1990/91) on the Upper face paths of the Tree.

Tree of Life upper face, showing hermetic tarot Arcana

Tree of Life upper face, showing hermetic tarot Arcana

No room on the paper for more – I shall do the rest in due course.

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And now, our span of Life on the Tree …

The Seven-year cycles on the Tree of Life

The Seven-year cycles on the Tree of Life

See earlier post, The Seven Year Cycles on the Tree of Life.

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Here is the Indian version:

Tree of Life showing the Indian shankara model of the Three Gunas

Tree of Life showing the Indian shankara model of the Three Gunas

In Kabbalah, the right-pillar of Solomon’s Temple is active:  the left-pillar is receptive, and the centre pillar is Consciousness – as in the electric circuit.  It corresponds with the Indian Three Gunas or qualities, red, black and white – fiery-passionate-projecting,  cool-intertia-veiling, and their equilibrium – Purity ascending.   We see also the Indian view of GILGALEM, the whirlings, in the Rajas or creative tendency.

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This picture holds a story of life up the Tree:

Tarot Arcanum 18, looking up the Tree from Malkuth through Yesod:  the path through the Moon

Tarot Arcanum 18, looking up the Tree from Malkuth through Yesod: the path through the Moon

It was painted when I was studying an earlier version of the Paths.

Hebrew letter Qoph, drawn as a Zain and crowning Kaph

Hebrew letter Qoph, drawn as a Zain (sword) and crowning Kaph (grasping hand)

This Piscean Tarot Key is in fact assigned to the 30th path – Netzach Malkuth – and to the Hebrew letter Qoph, whose sign is Pisces and the feet.  So that should be the letter over the Moon’s face – not Tzaddi.  In my old system also, this path was assigned to Yesod-Tifareth, moon-sun, persona-Self;  the path of honesty, of trial and probation.   Each system responds according to experience.

Key 18 is called the Corporeal Intelligence:  the repair and renewal of our cells when we sleep or rest …  the embodying and testing process as we travel life’s path.  Early life forms clamber out of the waters onto land;  animal consciousness dimly perceives the human sunrise.   Into our dark shadows, light yet gleams.  The letter Qoph means the back of the head –  medulla oblongata and the primordial reptile-brain .   So this Key rules the autonomic nervous system.

Indeed Pisces is at home here:  the feet and their reflexology.  Through the sole of the foot, the organs of our body as converging meridians, touch earth, sand, water, warmth.

footprintHow like an embryo it is!

The two towers are the gate of our body or “known” threshold, beyond which the Spirit seeks its companions.  Along the undulating path beyond the towers, the terrain gradually rises, so the lowest points are above the highest reached, erstwhile.  Take heart from temporary depressions!

This is an example of how each Tarot Key may be portrayed as the Tree and Sefiroth proportionally – looking up into it.

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Here again is the map I drew last week:

Fontanel or fountain - the Chakras on the Tree, according to BOTA tarot

Fontanel or fountain – the Chakras on the Tree, according to BOTA tarot

The Chakra “levels” are assigned to paths/Tarot keys between the Sefiroth.  “Mars” is the Tower path (the “Exciting Intelligence”), bridging Hod to Netzach:  the Crossing of the Red Sea. The Tetragrammaton triad appears, because the pin-pricks to outline it in that Aquariel post came through into the paper on which I drew this figure.   Naturally they are incorporated!

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And here is the heart of the matter:  the path linking Malkuth to Yesod, the Foundation in the root stem.  Saturn – the planet assigned to The World tarot key – rotates in her Rings – toutes directions.   The Understanding:  the weathercock:  the Earthbound.

The World compass at the heart of the matter

The World compass at the heart of the matter

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She dances in the hidden yet outgoing Centre of the Cube of Space.  In the B.O.T.A. teaching, the centre, the faces and corner edges of the Cube, and the three directional axes, are each assigned to a planet/zodiac sign/Tarot key.  I drew the interior cube in slightly different perspective, to define it from the geometric projection.  At its heart, where all points converge, you can just see the Saturn glyph, and a tiny TAV.   In my view, Saturn is the musician of the universe, shaping the structure and form of Beauty.   On the Tree of Life, Saturn is Binah, the Understanding … or literally, standingunder.

The Cube of Space, showing the positions of the Tarot Keys

The Cube of Space, all points of the compass, showing the positions of the Tarot Keys

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This morning I am thinking about stand-waves – how the current flows through loops and bumps in a river down gradients and around hidden rocks. In the same way, gravity is curved to the bumps and vortices in spacetime.   Observe the standwave of my physical body, constantly being replaced … the I-thought constantly replaced, substantiated, dying and being born:  countless incarnations, each one seems to last a lifetime, each a moment of ultimate diversity.

Observe the power of that magnetic field which keeps the standing-wave in the river steady as the whole world loops and swirls through it.

Here are two sketches of little surfing demons;  they show the principle however !

Rollercoaster standwave, 1987

Rollercoaster standwave, 1987

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Surfing, 1987

Surfing, 1987

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Who walks on the water, like Jesus?

Here is my portrait of Franz Liszt composing his Legende 2 of St Francis de Paule:

Liszt Legende - St Francis de Paule

Liszt Legende No.2 – St Francis de Paule

Links:  Perlemutter, – Balasz Szokalay, – Brendel (St Francis Preaching to the Birds)

(The first two recordings are interesting, particularly the Perlemutter one in 1939. The more recent live one by Balasz Szokoly has a noble quality.  I searched for Brendel playing it, but could only find his Legende No 1 – “St Francis of Assisi preaching to the birds”.  I include it – do stop and listen to it ! – because it is exquisite.)

The Legende No.2 rumbles up and down the keyboard like a great storm at sea.   The story is of a saint who needed to cross the water.  He had no money, and the ferryman refused to take him.   To the ferryman’s horror, the saint calmly followed the boat.  Great waves arose, and the boat almost capsized.  The saint walked on the sea with the heart’s glowing coin of coal in his hand, and quelled a mighty storm.

I have this feeling today, that I sit within a lens, in the core of the seed.  I breathe a rainbow fountain.   I visualise the paths of the Tree in their brilliant colours – my moon-boat.  There is no call to go anywhere, because the within is deep, unspoken.  I entrust myself to the shining mist.   Over the waters, my un-named teacher approaches, holding aloft the cross of the Rose, and in his other palm, a sacred fire – the SUN.   He is neither burned nor drowned.

Malkuth, with paths Qoph, Shin, Tav

Malkuth, with paths Qoph, Shin, Tav

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End of April is my each-year’s turning point.   Since my teens, each 27 April passing, something is glimpsed, which changes the particles.  In 1950, a French Himalayan expedition went to look for their mountain, Annapurna.  All the existing maps were wrong, and the surrounding mountainous terrain very difficult.  But on 27th April, they reached a high pass from which they saw the Goddess for the first time.  They called it Le Passage du 27 Avril.  They could see also, the way to Her through the deep dark valleys.

Annapurna Premiere 8,000 was my favourite book when I was a teenager.  I learned to speak French through reading it in the original.   This year, again I saw something.   The Saturday 27 April Independent – glimpsed at the supermarket – carried a photo of the SUN, entitled “The Future just got Brighter”.  The article is about the ITER project to replace our divisive nuclear fission technology with nuclear fusion – literally in Tarot terms, the “Collecting Intelligence” of unlimited solar power.  It cannot be used for military purposes, nor can it poison the environment, being its source.  The only small waste product is useful helium.   The centre for this project is Cadarache in southern France;  there is also one near Oxford in UK.  Since 1985 when Russian scientists first published the process, an unprecedented concordance of 34 countries collaborates.  The projected date is 2050.

I shall record my impressions of this article, in Aquariel in due course.   It looks as if there is light under the horizon.

Annapurna as glimpsed from the Pass of 27 April 1950

Annapurna as glimpsed from the Pass of 27 April 1950

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I heard someone say, the other day:
As Attachment withers, Love grows.  Then there is movement.”

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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.

 

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 https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

The Chakras Part 3: A Star in the Field

Concluding – for the moment – my mini-series on the Chakras.

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The Star in the Field

“The body … is called the field;  
Him who knows it, the sages call “knower of the field”. 
Know me also as the Knower of the field in all the fields.”

Bhagavad Gita, transl. Ramana Maharshi

This morning I had a brief dream-flash of Vishnu.  It said perhaps “Vishnu and the Tree of Knowledge” … meaning also, Vishnu and the wise Serpent.  I saw Brahma Creator being dreamed out of Vishnu’s naval CHAKRA.

Sacred India Tarot - Vishnu dreams Brahma

Sacred India Tarot – Vishnu dreams Brahma … Copyright 2011 Yogi Impressions Books

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The dreaming Vishnu lies on a serpent – his full length contact with the planetary Kundalini.  The serpent has five “waves” and five cobra heads, which like five fingers form a canopy over the god’s head.

Now, Vishnu is the presiding deity around Badrinath – (see The Chakras part 2: the Mountains) –  where they honour and release the ancestors.  Vishnu is also the eternal prototype of Krishna and of Buddha and of Maitreya – for Whom J.Krishnamurti was trained to be the vehicle.  Reflect on the burning sensation which JK – since his youth – endured in his head and spinal nerves, and called “the process“!   It is a classic example of the cosmic and the planetary kundalini in the physical body, as they “rub”.

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In his own words:

“In the car on the way to Ojai, again it began, the pressure and the feeling of immense vastness.  One was not experiencing this vastness;  it was simply there;  there was no centre from which, or in which, the experience was taking place.  Everything, the cars, the people, the bill-boards, were startlingly clear, and colour was painfully intense.  For over an hour it went on, and the head was very bad, the pain right through the head.

“The brain can and must develop;  its development will always be from a cause, from a reaction, from violence to non-violence, and so on.  The brain has developed from the primitive state, and however refined, intelligent, technical, it will be within the confines of space-time. 

“Anonymity is humility;  it does not lie in the change of name, cloth, or with the identification with that which may be anonymous – an idea, a heroic act, country and so on.  Anonymity is an act of the brain, the conscious anonymity;  there’s an anonymity which comes with the awareness of the complete.  The complete is never within the field of the brain or idea.

Krishnamurti at Rishi Valley 

“… Woke up at about two and there was a peculiar pressure and the pain was more acute, more in the centre of the head.  It lasted over an hour, and one woke up several times with the intensity of the pressure.  Each time there was great expanding ecstasy ; this joy continued….  – Again, sitting in the dentist’s chair waiting, suddenly the pressure began.  The brain became very quiet;  quivering, fully alive;  every sense was alert; the eyes were seeing the bee in the window, the spider, the birds and the violet mountains in the distance.  They were seeing, but the brain was not recording them.  One could feel the quivering brain, something tremendously alive, vibrant, and so not merely recording.  The pressure and the pain were great and the body must have gone off into a doze. 

“The strength and the beauty of a tender leaf is its vulnerability to destruction.  Like a blade of grass that comes up through the pavement, it has the power that can withstand causal death. 

Krishnamurti at Gstaad

Krishnamurti at Gstaad

“Woke up in the middle of the night, and found the body perfectly still, stretched out on its back motionless … The pressure and the pain were there.  The brain and the mind were intensely still.  There was no division between them.  There was a strange quiet intensity, like two great dynamos working at great speed;  there was a peculiar tension in which there was no strain.  There was a sense of vastness about the whole thing, and a power without direction and cause, and so no brutality and ruthlessness.  And it continued during the morning.

“The ambitious do not know beauty.  The feeling of essence is beauty … Woke up in the middle of the night, shouting and groaning …

Orbits - a sense, in 1988, of planes of consciousness touching each other, perhaps extra-terrestrially

Orbits – a sense, in 1988, of planes of consciousness touching each other, perhaps from outside our dimension.  Convex could be a concavity, and vice versa.   The ELOHIM came very close to earth, and still are.  Their Presence throws everything into high-relief.

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“… That which is sacred has no attributes.  A stone in a temple, an image in a church, is not sacred.  Man calls them sacred, something holy to be worshipped out of complicated urges, fears and longings.  This “sacredness” is still within the field of thought;  it is built up by thought, and in thought there’s nothing new or holy.

“…But there’s a sacredness, untouched by any symbol or word.  It is not communicable.  It is a fact … It is not possible to be one with a swiftly flowing river.  You can never be one with that which has no form, no measure, no quality.  It is:  that is all.  How deeply mature and tender everything has become, and strangely all life is in it;  like a new leaf, utterly defenceless.”

“This sacredness has no worshipper, the observer who meditates on it.  It’s not in the market to be bought or sold.  Like beauty it cannot be seen through its opposite, for it has no opposite. 

“That presence is here, filling the room, spilling over the hills, beyond the waters, covering the earth … Yesterday afternoon it was pretty bad, almost unbearable.  It went on for several hours … Early this morning, there was a benediction that seemed to cover the earth and fill the room.  With it comes an all consuming quietness, a stillness that seems to have within it, all movement. 

Orbits (2) - sketch in 1988, of a wooden sculpture I made at art college in 1968

Orbits (2) – sketch in 1988, of a wooden sculpture I made at art college in 1968.  Lower left corner I can just see two figures – an old philosopher (with right hand outstretched) and his bowed companion.

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“The process was particularly intense yesterday afternoon.  In the car waiting, one was almost oblivious of what was going on around one.  The intensity increased and it was almost unbearable, so that one was forced to lie down.  Fortunately there was someone in the room.  The room became full with that benediction … It was the centre of all creation;  it was a purifying seriousness that cleansed the brain of every thought and feeling;  its seriousness was as lightning which destroys and burns up;  the profundity of it was not measurable, it was there immovable, impenetrable, a solidity that was as light as the heavens.  It was in the eyes, in the breath.  It was in the eyes, and the eyes could see.

“… Through the back of the head, rushing forward as an arrow with that peculiar sound as it flies through the air, was a force, a movement that came from nowhere, and was going nowhere.  And there was a sense of vast stability and a ‘dignity’ that could not be approached.  And an austerity that no thought could formulate, but with it a purity of infinite gentleness.  All these are merely words and so they can never represent the real;  the symbol is never the real and the symbol is without value.   All the morning the process was on, and a cup that had no height and no depth seemed to be full to the overflowing.

“… like a knife thrust into a soft earth, there was that benediction with its power and strength.  It came as does lightning, and was gone as quickly …  a stream rushing out of the rocks, out of the earth … an aspen tree and its leaves are trembling in the breeze, and without that dance life is not.

Krishnamurti’s Notebook,1961 (Gollancz 1977)

K on the sands

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I have quoted this at much greater length than intended, because as I skim the pages, I pick up the Presence of Vishnu, and of Siva.   These are names for the nose on my face – the vast empty, the zip of fire and water in the thunder cloud, the … Chakra.

Here is Vishnu, Sustainer of the Dharma or Laws of Creation.  Note the Kundalini up his back, and cobra hood!   Vishnu is … obviously …  the Lord of the Chakras.

Sacred India Tarot Vishnu Magus

Sacred India Tarot Vishnu Magus – copyright 2011 Yogi Impressions Books

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K is a surprise entrance here – I have not posted about him for six months or more.   He arrived through the Vishnu archetype, because he was trained since boyhood to be Buddha Maitreya’s vehicle, in that lineage.  The current of the Un-named god in his spine and head, expresses the Chakra.

Sacred India Tarot 8 of Arrows

Sacred India Tarot 8 of Arrows – copyright 2011 Yogi Impressions Books

Here, in the Mahabharat, King Bhishma surrenders to Krishna, who carries/spins an enormous blue cosmic Chakra:  the Vishnu lineage or galaxy.  (In the finished card I drew a palm tree and three stars in Bhishma’s blank shield.)   This is, as Rohit Arya says, an “end of Karma” card – an 8 of the suit.

J.Krishnamurti was groomed by the theosophists as a vehicle for Maitreya who was of that lineage – Buddha, Krishna, the blue ones.   He cut it away, but it stayed inside his nervous system and nadis.  He spoke often as the medium, and did not remember afterwards what “the Speaker” had said.  The intensity with which he lived, enquired and spoke, did not leave ‘a recording’ in his conscious memory, because it was ongoing, moment to moment.

This has a Rahu resonance – J.K. yet conveyed the flavour of the gods, as profound psychological verities in his teaching.  Rejecting Vedanta – cutting away the conditioned images – cutting the fence – he offered the utmost Transparency which is Brahman.  Not many could follow him there, without the pilgrim’s prop and staff he cast away.  It is ironic that his name translates to “Image of Krishna” – the murti, or sacred object.   For him, the sacred has no object.  Any object stands in the way of the sacred.   K invited us passionately, to live unobstructedly.  But the eternal Snows are in his words, and their teeming archetypes.

Orbits (3) - dandelion

Orbits (3) – dandelion chakra

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Masters of their Interior Stars – by Paul Foster Case

Paul Foster Case 2008

“(An adept’s) different organism gives him another kind of vision.  His unfoldment has made him able to deal successfully with situations and events which baffle the understanding of ordinary men and women.  He is skillful where most persons are inept.  Yet there is plenty for him to do, and plenty to learn.

“He knows how to set about solving his problems, and has behind him a record of successes which gives him confidence.  He approaches his problems with joy.  His work is not labour, but in the truest and best sense of the word, recreation.

“He belongs to that small minority described as BAALI HA-ShMIM, masters of the heavens.  They must not be confused with ordinary exoteric astrologers.  For besides knowing and interpreting the influences of external celestial forces, they have become masters of their interior Stars.  This mastery is one consequence of the meditation symbolized in Tarot by Key 17.”

17 star - Version 3

(NB –  Key 17 The Star, contains the arcana of Chakra study.)

“The nature of the experience of such persons … is truly UNSPEAKABLE.  Yet in this, it doesn’t differ from your own experience.  One of the most valuable results of silent meditation is that it makes us realise that we live our whole existence at a level of activity which cannot be put into words.  All that we say about our experience consists of arbitrary verbal symbols, representing our mental abstractions from an inexpressible field of living experience – that is, all we say which makes sense.  

“We are unhappily, able to speak and write strings of perfectly meaningless verbal symbols.  We hypnotise ourselves and others with these noises, and entangle ourselves in nets of misunderstanding.  Quarrels between persons and nations are more often due to this misuse of language, than to any real clash of human interests … “

Paul Foster Case

My problem precisely.  I am writing about Chakras, but I am not a Yogi.  I try to tackle relationships but get bogged down in things we said to each other.

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Master R playing the violin, 2003

Master R playing the violin, 2003

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However, here I enjoyed a moment of direct, non verbal experience:  (29 March 1991) – and it stays for ever true.  One of my paths to peace is through contemplating the beauty and balance of simple numbers.  It focuses and opens the point within:

“They must become not intellectual but living concepts.  The livingness unfolds the mystery of FIVE, the number of Life.  Here is an exercise of space:  The All-Space, cosmic without end or beginning, which is awareness, expands beyond the body-form because … why?   I dive into the creation of interior space, like a pioneer.

“Couldn’t every thought arising during a concentration, which tries to sleep me and pull its important woolly habit over my eyes, be pressed into service?   The movement may be used, undressed, as a key to penetrate that inner and infinite Circle whose centre everywhere is not circumscribed.

“Strangely, into the sphere go straight lines of attention to …  I wake;  are those obscuring motorways a joy to be and to hold?

“No!  Then to question them, unwordedly, is the creation of an un-thought inward, which yet is boundlessly alive outward, through objects, feelings, galaxies, everything.

“Tsim tsum …  the pregnant void.

4 compass directions plus up, down, all radiate simultaneously outward with the inward enquiry which is their Sun.   A Star.

Imagine not a mere six directions, but the numberless points of the sphere, inward as outward:   the vibrant soft stillness of Who? is everywhere.   Hu  …  a Hebrew name of God.

Gallery of images from “Arcanum Five” (2011)

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Test it always – see how it feels, and hear the in-formation which is real to me, how does it look?  Look inward, feel its space and dimension, direct sight to the centre of knowing which has no end.   To the Answering Service!

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The Tube - Douglas Harding's paper bag experiment.  How many faces are there, from your end?

The Tube – Douglas Harding’s paper bag experiment. “Look carefully. On present evidence only, how many faces are there, from your end of the bag?  One or two?”

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11 vesicae hook, mandorla

It develops from this mantra …  which I held inwardly, a week or so ago;  it hummed.

This is how it looks and feels.  It is called a mandorla.   It was a multiple mandorla – three or five “circle” curves or planes met :  the focus of encounter, an encounter of planes, an interior gyroscope in my solar plexus spine:  a setting.

It feels like a HOOK.  It is a hook – one which joins, or one which catches fish.  It pierces the soft interior of my spinal stem, steadfastly.   It is a hook, a fountain and a snake;  it is everlasting.

When annoyed with anyone or anything (which is frequent), try practising my inner pioneer of space.   Use the same energy-particles of the annoyance, to collapse the thought-form into radiance.

Huh!   Tall order!   It’s funny how my mind LIKES to be annoyed, agitated and blind, in dreams and so forth – like that poor cat in Barclays Bank I once dreamt about, whose owner dragged her about and didn’t let her sit, so she wouldn’t get into mischief.   I said to the cat’s owner – I think – that I thought the cat might behave much better if she was kind to it and gave it some peace and quiet.

12 Zain letter

ZAIN is the Seventh letter of Alephbeis:  its Tarot is 6, The Lovers.  In Number Seven, all directional points meet at their Sabbath, or resting place.  The warrior puts his spear in the ground.  The true warrior exerts gentle control over … the thought process.   S/he is the needle through whose eye must pass the camel – i.e. the whole of the subconscious!

13 Gimel letter

Not as difficult as it sounds: the third letter of the Alephbeis (in Tarot, it represents Arcanum Two, the Priestess) is GIMEL, which means Camel.  In Hebrew the GOMEL CHESED means an act of kindness:  the camel will carry a traveller very far in the thirsty desert.

“4” centres the Seven – the four of matter.  To each side of this 4, are three digits, the supernal Triad. “3” centres the Five.   To each side there are two, the Binary poles.

 14 chariot

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The Chariot’s letter is the 8th, CHETh, meaning an enclosure, fence or field.  Its path is Binah Gevurah on the Tree.

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cube, tetrahedrons, temple of 7

cube, tetrahedrons, temple

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The meaning of FIVE

Is that today – an almost tangible and quite definite sensation – a door, the needles’ eye into Jerusalem, stands open somewhere within my backbone, to an odyssey of infinite depth.  I never died.  I never will.  It finds its own, each time I am born.  It always will.

I suppose this is what leads to joy.

It ‘s quite strange.  The ground along the street to Waitrose, is a cushion to walk.  I have a cold in my head, which doesn’t matter.  I have a boundless universe inside.

… never mind the beautiful patterns of numbers around it …
and all I can say or know is:  it is THERE,
the yield, the ever-ever, within,

there is no death
and no confinement, just

the path that is rich, mid spine
like love, I suppose

travelling to greet the world, the portals of heaven
stand open within
the matter.

Oh, I suppose it’s probably a Chakra!

But who cares?   This is life.
It doesn’t introspect.
Life is.

1991

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grasses at twilight, north mimms

grasses at twilight, north mimms

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The Song of the River is Timeless

for it has no end

the song of the rain is timeless
for it has no end

the song of the wind is timeless
for it has no end

no beginning

the song of the buds coming through bare winter boughs
and bursting imperceptibly into leaf
is timeless
for it has no end

the song of a train or truck
passing by is timeless
for its end and beginning
are not known

the song of a bird
is timeless
for it sings

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Dandelions in Cornwall 1955 - and follow this link to a wonderful golden brew!

Dandelions in Cornwall 1955 – and follow this link to a wonderful golden brew! – “9 tips – for making a kick ass wildflower wine”

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**

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 https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

The Chakras, Part 1- the Journey

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[NB the time line became a little mixed up here!  The Chakras, Part 2 – the Mountains (posted 17 April 2013) is marked Previous to this one.]

Tree of Life, showing 3 granthis - solar plexus, throat and third-eye chakras

Tree of Life, showing 3 granthis – solar plexus, throat and third-eye chakras.  NB – the Sefira on the left pillar, centre, is GEVURAH.

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This has become a somewhat Himalayan project.

You won’t find a conventional description of the Chakras here.  I don’t practice Yoga, nor think about them very much – but I have attended to what and where they are.  I did classes in the Tree and in the Body of Light.  The principles are laid down in my strata as an artist.   I get inspired by the Chakra principle:  it generates poetic images, landscape and inner journeys.

2 key 17 bota star

The Chakras are the Interior Stars.  For myself, Tarot Key 17 the Star awakes their spectrum, their depth all at once, from the subconscious.   With this figure, this picture, I send a fish-hook, a request into the deep;  and up comes all the data.   It glows – the chakra-spin.

3 Tree of Life chakras

My sketch of the Chakras on the Tree of Life is a body-of-light, or vehicle within which to perceive the universe.  It was done many years before I knew of this, formally.   When I am in this body of light, it takes me at once to the Himalayas;  to the sages and the sources.   That is the way I happen to be.

The mountains do not bestow their gifts in moderation.  Rivers flood, avalanches fall from the soaring rock, brushed by the aeons’ feather.   The mountains are slow:  their forces are vast.

So Part 2 of this series will contain two mountain galleries:  words and beyond words.

Paul Foster Case wrote:  – “The wise are silent.  They waste neither time nor energy in trying to say what cannot be said.  Some symbols, like those of Tarot, they have found to be more truly descriptive of their experience than words.  Yet even these symbols cannot communicate the experience itself, though they do call forth a response from one who uses them in the right way, and this response makes it easier for such a person to follow the Path of Liberation which leads within.”

In Elder Ancient Egypt, students and initiates drew formalised gardens – diagrams.  The plants, patterns and tools were hieroglyphs, symbols.  Look to their root!   A person working such a garden, needs to read the glyph and take the time to plant it inwardly:  to cultivate it during the seasons, so it flowers.   The inner garden, with a rich loam of life and nitrates, has no limit.   It delivers a visualisation, and leads the poets’ way.

I draw a lot of symbols, they are the flowers and seeds in my garden.   If I take the time to contemplate any one of them, the doors to the cosmos open.

So just a tiny bit now:  Because I write so much, it is a “baby adept”, like the Children of the Sun.  I have one foot in the inner and one foot in the outer circle.  I have yet work to do.

Tarot Arcanum 19 - the Sun

Tarot Arcanum 19 – the Sun

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My previous post, The Chakras on the Tree of Life,  searched through the atlas:  foothills, Kabbalah, Jacobs Ladder, the KAV thread, and Leo Schaya on the tsim tsum.  “Chakra” means “a wheel”.  We can apply Chakra science to the Tree’s centres of consciousness, the rainbow spectrum – a fountain of white light within the colour seed – the pith within the Tree.

Now I will draw some threads together. There is so much material, I divide it into three new posts, to publish together.   I shall include some work (with my friend Actaeon) on the vagus nerve, the parental arch, the granthi knots,  ancestors and the Spirit, the Himalaya Ganga sources through Badrinath (Vishnu), and another glimpse of Kailas (Siva the soul’s pilgrimage).   Part 2 (next post) contains the Himalayan journey in my imagination.

Part 3 is called “A Star in the Field”.  It will include a couple of pages from J.Krishnamurti’s Notebook about his process, an observation by Paul Foster Case, and my “local tsimtrum” one day when walking up to Waitrose (“Oh-I-suppose-it’s-just-a-chakra”).  The tsim-tsum is a cosmic in-out and a chakra is an in-out – a spontaneous breath or prana.  We have little ones, and it is good to know what they really, really are!

Jacob's Ladder, 4 worlds

Jacob’s Ladder, 4 worlds

We don’t have chakras, we have CHAKRA the Great Wheel, the Gilgalem, the whirlings, the milky way.  The beads on our thread are a range of tones.  The 7 chakras are levels of the rainbow.  Each in principle has that tsim tsum feeling, as it clears.

Why was my soul drawn to this father’s seed and this mother’s womb?  What in their negative and positive energy field is crucial for development?  the lessons to be learned in this lifetime?  Soul hovered over them as they made love, and is drawn into the interplay of their DNA.  The Soul Triad locks into their ancestral DNA triad.

The tenfold Tree of Life within each of the ten Sefiroth, is a nut within a shell ad infinitum, a brain within a skull ad infinitum = the embryonic habit of infinite little containers, like the tetrahedron series without end, interiorly or externally …  Inward … out.

Tetrahedral cube '93

Tetrahedral cube ’93

Tetrahedral Tifareth Tree '93

Tetrahedral Tifareth Tree ’93

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In part 2, we shall touch on the three Granthi knots, or levels on the Tree.  My friend Actaeon teaches this method.  It bridges Kabbalah with his study of Yogic Kriyas during the 1970s in an Indian guru-vasati setting.   This means:  living in the guru’s house, with his family.

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Trees of incarnation & parenting

Trees of incarnation & parenting

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The first or Brahma Granthi (naval chakra) is on the threshold of Awakening – Hod Netzach.  This is where we let go of negative aspects of ancestral DNA and release the energy which honours father and mother, the living and the dead.  The Fire in the belly lifts into the heart centre, into prana, which is Air.  We purify through consciousness, our Intention.

The Brahma, Vishnu and Siva granthis on the Tree

The Brahma, Vishnu and Siva granthis on the Tree:  persona, soul and spirit

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The second and third Granthis are:  the heart centre soul triad (Tifareth-Gevurah-Hesed) and the Spirit triad (Tifareth-Binah-Hokhmah – third eye). We undo our attachments to Karmic patterns in previous lives, and to systems of belief which impede our realisation.

A Chakra is a Release Node – a higher vibration of our human potential.  The purification through consciousness, truth, love, of each centre, is therefore AN EMPTYING:  creation of a space inside – a TSIM TSUM …   for God to behold God.

This can be done through breath or chant:  through sound and breath:  life.   In life as a whole, accept the Macrocosm’s scrubbing brush! – the pain and tension of my event horizon when it still encloses me, and is being spring-cleaned.  Even so … I am an archaeological site, buried under winds, cities and dust of time.  And now I am being dug and brushed and revealed, detail by detail – and recorded in a notebook

serpent OM: Kundalini shakti

serpent OM: Kundalini shakti

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The mind’s Atlas is the Himalaya of the soul.   The  path of the High Priestess, linking Tifareth and Kether through Daat, lifts heart and head.  “Love and you shall know” – this is the Thread, the KAV, the nut within the kernel.  There is no need to travel the world or go public.  The pulse is transmitted from the cave of the heart in the forest.  It reaches five souls at a time, maybe, which is more than enough to sprout onward through the centuries.

buddha chenrezig '13

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Buddha Chenrezig is a Tibetan embodiment of compassion which specifically does not seek reward, recognition or wealth.   It moves with the heart of the Universe, the river.

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How to make a Chakra – on this general principle

stairwalker

stairwalker – play the sprung spiral like an accordian

As we saw in The Chakras and the Tree of Life … the KAV thread through the Tree, through fontanelle, heart, pelvis, soles of feet, may be wound up (spiral) and SPUN, like a spinzip toy:  the vibrational field.  This is Chakra.

Here is one which I made just now, in rather a hurry, to check that it works:

11 Spinzip

It does, very nicely, but the string loop should probably be a thinner one – all I could find immediately, was this garden twine.  Instructions are in my previous post – if you don’t already know how.  At school we coloured them both sides in many ways to see the patterns when it spins.  We also cut zig zag teeth round the edge – a chain-saw!  This device demonstrates planet principles of torque, centrifugue and centripetal rotation.

spinzip diagram

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The KAV of Jacob’s Ladder has 11 circles. See Previous Post, for picture.  That is 7 chakras + 4:  the 4 is JHVH, the universal tetrahedron law, or “One Reality”.  J H V H is a triad of 3, with 4 (the second H) beginning a new triad from its centre.   This is called Tetragrammaton – the grammar of the Name – a circuit of 3 becomes 4 when produced into three dimensions – a Tetrahedron.  3 and 4 add up to – again – 7!

The Tree of Life combines laws of 7, of 3, and of 10.

In the hub of a wheel, in the black hole that births a star, nothing happens.  There is no time, space or boundary.  It is a full stop point, the pupil of an eye, containing infinite momentum.

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tree in seed

tree in seed

avocado stone

avocado stone

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Here is an introduction to the Journey to Badrinath in Part 2:

“On the Line of the Spine”  (From my colleague Actaeon’s Introduction to “Homer Rows” 2004)

“How do we go about resolving conflicts both internally and in the world?  How are we brought to a greater understanding of the life journey?  It appears that some religious groupings are in denial of anything to do with the science of sexuality.  A disconnection has in the past been made between the primal physical forces within us and our spiritual potential.  The result of this inability to unite the conventional and the unconventional, is fear and guilt.  If we are made in the divine image, then the nature of love expressed in sexual/spiritual orgasm is part of that Creation.

15 spiral Tree..

“Our sexual expression stimulates the male prostate gland, and the clitoral nerve antennae deep in the vagina.  Orgasm awakes the entire nervous system through the vagus nerve:  an intense physical, spiritual union.  In tantric Yoga this release of energy potential, called the Kundalini, (symbolized by a coiled snake) travels upwards through the body, awakening the senses and the mind;  it opens up our deeper levels of consciousness.  Perhaps one of the causes of prostate cancer in men is that they ignore the anal area, and so separate off a part of their sexuality?

“Historically, organized religion seems to have wanted to keep such knowledge from people, as part of a system of control and suppression.  This is no longer possible; as we have discovered through other cultures and techniques, a different relationship to our bodies and our sexuality.  Perhaps one day the separating of heterosexual, homosexual and bisexual will fall away, and the true nature of our human interrelatedness become realized.

Under the garden

Under the garden

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“Yoga in the Eastern traditions, and Kabbalah in our Western traditions, help us realise our human potential to unite our physical and spiritual being –  no separation!  Yoga means in Sanskrit “to join” – or Union.  Kabbalah in Aramaic means “to receive”.  Through Kabbalah –  “the Tree of Life” –  we learn about the creation of our soul and its descent through the four worlds towards our parents making love.  This gives us an understanding of why we incarnate to those parents;  and the unfolding nature of the father’s seed in the womb of the mother, on the line of the spine.  So we discover the nature of the mind and our creative destiny;  the pattern of our ancestral genetic conditioning.  We come to discover the primal force behind our sexuality, our human relationship to the elementals and life on earth.

“Having made this descent – conception, birth – through the pathways of the Tree, we may discover how to ascend through the body, personality and Soul, and make the return journey to our Source.”

Actaeon, 2003

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Ananga ranga 2008 - tortoise position

Ananga ranga 2008 – tortoise position

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The Chakras, Part 2 – the Mountains – follows shortly.

spinzip 2

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**

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 https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

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The Chakras Part 2 – the Mountains

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3 Granthis on Everest!  Photo by F S Smythe, 1930s

3 Granthis on Everest! Photo by F S Smythe, 1930s

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This post suggests walking the Tree of Life through the Himalayan range! – to re-state the themes of the journey.

Chakras on the Tree of Life

Chakras on the Tree of Life

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The Granthi Knots

Definition by Ernest Wood:  “There are three granthis:  in the basal/muladhara, the heart(anahata) and the eye-brow/ajna Chakras.   It is explained that Kundalini has to break through these knots in the course of her journey up the spine.  The first is called the knot of Brahma, the second that of Vishnu, the third that of Siva.  Human consciousness goes through (these) three states before reaching perfect union with its own true Self, or abolition of bondage.”  

The trimurti Brahma Vishnu Siva are “Creator, Sustainer, Destroyer”.   The One Immanent Reality (equivalent to Y – H V H in our tradition [jhvh, jahveh]) is Brahman, the Self, transcending all three.  Once again in the greater Mysteries, we find the divine Thread – a Tetrahedral sacred geometry:  3 with the emerging One within – a 4th.

soul tetrahedrons

soul tetrahedrons

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Here is a page from “Manishya – On Being Human” by myself and Actaeon, in 2004:

THE KNIGHT (male) journeys through the mandala of the Rose (female).  The Knight and the Rose  symbolise our learning process from childhood.  The child’s task throughout life, is to reconcile and honour his or her interior parents – 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 belief systems – rigidities of indoctrination. Devouring their own tail, they reinforce a closed circuit of births or reactive patterns of behaviour.  Hod repeats the Netzachian pulse, fuelled by Yesod the personal ego: a triad of feeling – the habit pattern.

Arcana - ourobouros

In alchemy, we try to walk contra the way of the world.  Rather than run with life’s pressure, we turn to face it.  The arrow put into reverse, flies “upside down” into the heart of Dante’s Rose of paradise.  Our attachments to “life-and-death” matters begin to drop away.  They fall out of the pockets of that powerful tarot symbol, the Hanging Man – the path of MEM.  This Hebrew letter means 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 Hanging Man is a pendulum at rest.

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Arcanum 12 - Hanging Man

Arcanum 12 – Hanging Man

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The personal becoming transpersonal, moves deeper into the Tree.  We reach our own interior crossroads, where the granthi of our genetic, karmic and spiritual tendencies were knotted.

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Tree of Life with three Granthi Knots

Tree of Life with three Granthi Knots

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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 Shakti – has to break through these knots in the course of her journey up the spine, and free their energy potential.

Brahma granthi (Sacred india Tarot)

Brahma granthi (Sacred india Tarot) – Vishnu lies asleep on the serpent, and dreams him on his lotus, umbilically.

In the mythos, the first is sometimes called the knot of Brahma (creator), the second is that of Vishnu (sustainer), the third is Rudra/Siva (destroyer).  We may detect, become aware and release the bonds of life.  We inherit the Conscious seed – our second birth.

Siva/Rudra granthi (sacred india Tarot)

Siva/Rudra Granthi (sacred india Tarot) – serpent power liberated

Vishnu Granthi (Sacred India Tarot)

Vishnu Granthi (Sacred India Tarot) – serpent power contained.

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Human consciousness reaches union with its own true Self, through these three levels.  The first concerns personality, ancestral and genetic codes.  The second addresses issues still deeply engraved in the Soul Law from previous lives, which await resolution.  At the third (beyond the mind), time and space dissolve, and grace prevails.  The points of tension or conflict, seek resolution.

near Tibet - photo by Ashvin Mehta, Encounters with Eternity 1985

near Tibet – photo by Ashvin Mehta, Encounters with Eternity 1985

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In the Tree’s Lower Face, the cutting of the first granthi  of Yesod to Tifareth, across the Hod-Netzach “Red Sea”, frees the heart from ancestral ties or relationships which bind.

Clip from Jacobs Ladder, showing the Tree of the psyche (planets) interlocking the Tree of the body (Cha

Clip from Jacobs Ladder, showing the Tree of the psyche (planets) interlocking the Tree of the body (Chakras).  The psychological Tree of Formation is planted in the body Tree’s Tifareth, at “ground level”.  The first granthi (ancestral) is below the ground level.  The second granthi is above it, at Tifareth, Gevurah, Netzach, where the Trees of Formation and Substance interlock.   The soul matures.  At the third granthi – in the Great Triad of Tifareth, Binah, Hokhmah –  the Creational archetypes interlock with the Tree of Formation.

I need to refresh and clarify the detail for myself.  This diagram also has the general idea:

Jacobs Ladder - interlocking worlds

Jacobs Ladder – interlocking worlds:  11 circles  (see previous post)

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After we have lived and worked along the paths forming the Soul cup, we start to comprehend 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 profound Karmic issues adhere, releases a potential to receive the Cup of divine grace:  Tifareth, Binah, Hokhmah … Kether.  Conditioned tensions in the Tree’s Lower Face melt away, as our centre of gravity shifts to the heart.

So we cross the Abyss “beneath the Angels’ Wings”.  As we travel the mountain passes, 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” .

Photo taken from FS Smythe's highest point on Everest, 1933

Photo taken from FS Smythe’s highest point on Everest, 1933

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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 understand and break the deep, ingrained Soul patterns of victim, persecutor, rescuer.  Obscuring consciousness (Tifareth), truth (Gevurah) and love (Hesed), these lay embedded for lifetimes to resolve.

Terrace farm in Ranihet by sranjan, trekearth.com

Terrace farm in Ranihet by sranjan, trekearth.com

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flow of stone, Encounters with Eternity 1985

flow of stone, Encounters with Eternity 1985

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Gevurah and Hesed in the Soul triad, are 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, embodying a bundle of soul memory, the personal “I” – Yesod – takes shape.  The soul Law breathes into our ear a Word – the essence of our quest for this lifetime.  As we are born again and pick up this live vibration, we treasure in ourselves, our parents’ 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.  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.   Reaching the core of my soul Law  “that I am“,  she moves and flowers through all my seemingly separate births, linking and drawing them together by soul osmosis … upward and across the pattern.

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 onlooker from outside Earth, may witness the flow of renewed life over the continents, as a quiver of springtime’s emerald ray.  A soul’s release into Spirit from Tifareth, begins to nourish humanity.

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Towards Daat …

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.

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14 moonrise

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The Journey to Badrinath

GALLERY – I have not been to Badrinath.  These photos were taken by Actaeon, many years ago.  The pilgrim chant through the watershed is Lakshmi Narayana, Badri Narayana – the seed (Badri) which Lakshmi gave to Vishnu. 

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This is how I imagine the journey:

The Blue Ones – consider the throat chakra in the rainbow scheme – they speak.  The speaker.  The transmission.   Imagining it at this moment, as a flow of jewels in the air – the ageless teaching, the wisdom, ever fresh and beautiful – the river flowing from the source, the voice …  I find myself at a meeting point of Siva and Vishnu, hence the over-abundance of river valleys in this region.   Around Badrinath they abound.   Vishnu is Lord here, and he is blue.   Siva did something rather like RAHU.  When the gods were churning nectar with Mount Meru as the stick, they churned up all the poisons too.   Siva drank up all the poisons and held them in his yogic Throat where they turned pure peacock-blue – Vishnu’s colour:  stability, Sustainer.

In such a tale, the gods are not differentiated, they are Brahman the One, in his flow of aspects.

Rahu when he was an ordinary asura, crept in on the gods when they were feasting on their own immortality, and took a sip.   One of the Vishnu(?) gods saw him, and cut off the head and mouth which had tasted.  The elixir would rove for ever more, unsated, energising humans to bite off more than we can chew.

Siva when the gods got into trouble with their self indulgence, also came and sipped and drank, but as a Deliverer.   As a Yogi, he held it in his throat without swallowing, and transmuted the toxicity.  He turned it into brilliant blue sky.   Siva is alchemical.

Nilakantha by moonlight, photo by F S Smythe 1935 - blue in Siva's throat

Nilakantha by moonlight, photo by F S Smythe 1935 – blue in Siva’s throat

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So here are Siva and Rahu, both with the Taste of Elixir.    Here are Siva and Vishnu in the high Ganga tributaries;  and here is Creator Brahma dreaming it all.  I can only imagine their places of worship and pilgrimage among those arduous communicating valleys and snowy passes.  I imagine being among their mountains and hearing their song, the melted glaciers rushing through the little towns.   I sense their altars, and the pilgrims who have trudged this far, and are content.   I hear the chanting and the ancestral release.  I can smell the dhoop and yak dung, and put down my heavy load:  the air of high altitude, biting fresh, and in the hidden distance, Kailas.   You know, you cross the highest watershed, and still ahead of you, remote in Tibetan brownlands, awaits the culminating peak:  and the lake of lakes, in which to bathe.

Nilgiri Parbat, photo by Frank Smythe

Nilgiri Parbat, photo by Frank Smythe

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I might not be able to travel to Badrinath physically in this lifetime, but it is in my soul.

I hear the ancestral song.  You know, our ancestors and past loved-ones, are buried in our personal graveyards, the ones we carry around on our backs.   We are walking graveyards!   Siva dances in graveyards.  And when we arrive up here, we let go of our walking dead, clean and noble.   We cut the “granthi knot”.  We release our personal micro-cosmos to the Self:  the godcosm.

And then we return to the plains, having honoured them, and life goes on.

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Chalice and Blade

Chalice and Blade

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This is from a collection of photographs of a journey to Kailas.  Glimpses of Siva and Parvati abound:  their marital home was on Kailas.

Mountain gallery
Photos copyright Rommel and Sadhana Varma 1985

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I found this photo of Kailas in Tom's blog The Sun Hermit, of poetry and observations

GLIMPSE OF KAILAS – I found this wonderful photo in Tom’s blog The Sun Hermit, of poetry and observations.  Under it is his poem The Mountain without Valleys – a beautiful tale.

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**

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 https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/

The Chakras on the Tree of Life

Tree of Life chakras

Commenting on my sketch of the Chakras on the Tree of Life, (see Violet Woman and the Hermit) … /  Peter asked me if I could write a detailed post on this topic.

Well !  I shall try.  That sketch was done in 1992, and I seem to remember, there was some written material with it …  (which I located yesterday!  See further down).   But first, some warm-up flourishes with the Tree:

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Buddha manishya

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General – the Tree and Jacobs Ladder

The Chakras embody the seven levels of the Tree of Life.

More than enough has been written about the Chakras, their tonalities and symbols in different systems, for a student to become thoroughly confused!   It feels superfluous to compare or reconcile cultural viewpoints – they all come back to the same principle.  Bridging the traditions, I intend to pick up on a few of my insights which accumulated experientially here.

Key 17 star

The Chakras are seven beads strung upon a thread.  Like our classical planetary octave to which were added for the modern era, the outer planets, supplementary beads appear among the basic seven.

In Tarot and Alchemy, the Chakras are called the “Interior Stars”.  Our spine is a stem for their expression, like a flute or a fountain.

The Tree of Life is a fountain:  root and shoot:  a gravitation of Light into earth.  The lightning flash upward or downward, completes an electric circuit.  It unites the polarities through centre.  From the heart the shoot ascends;  the root descends.  

On this foundational principle is based the Cup and Blade, Feminine and Masculine triads, the interplay of Grace and Kundalini, the Book of Changes.  Rise and fall.

At the heart, Tifareth (Beauty) – is sustained through Kether (the Holy One) and our Ground (Malkuth).  The cosmic song of Kether, Tifareth, Malkuth is: “I AM THAT I AM”.

The Tree’s centre pillar is sometimes called KAV.  This inner thread unites galaxy to earthworm through DNA and atomic lattice.   When the Tree extends into Four Worlds (dovetailed through the upper and lower ‘faces’), the KAV forms – up through the centre pillar, or stem – a vertical Jacobs’ Ladder of 11 Sefiroth – Malkuth, Yesod, Hod, Netzach, Tifareth, Gevurah, Hesed, Daat (which is a non-Sefira), Binah, Hokhmah, Kether.  Or in physical terms – body as vehicle, the persona, mind-stuff, desire, beauty(heart centre), constraints, opportunities, unknown-cognition, understanding, wisdom, the Divine thread.  The language is refined through the 3 higher worlds, and becomes archetypal.  The psychological world – Yetzirah –  penetrates our physical organs – Assiyah – through Daat (union, unknown cognition, capillary) and “rests its feet”/Malkuth, in the heart/Tifareth of the physical world.  And so on.

The KAV feels like a tweak of the divine Thread through fontanelle and soles of feet:  sky to earth – the Tree is strung upon it, as I am.

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The Four Worlds

In his autobiography The Path of a Kabbalist, Halevi writes:

“Jacob’s Ladder is the Kabbalistic version of the Chain of Being or interacting Worlds, well known to the ancient and medieval mystics and philosophers.  In the Zohar, the Ladder is spoken of symbolically as one reality inside another, like a nut within its shell, which in turn is inside another nut and shell: (or the brain inside the skull).  In the extended diagram of interlocked Trees, the lower ‘face’ of a higher Tree overlaps the upper ‘face’ of the next Tree below or World down, and so on.  

“However, this metaphysical diagram was never openly revealed in the public domain, although it was hinted at in many Kabbalistic texts. 

eleven vesica circles, Yemen halevi

“The nearest reference I have seen is a document from Yemen in the late 15th century. In this, a chain of eleven interlocked circles clearly define Jacobs Ladder, but without the sefiroth or paths.  This meant the original scheme of what was called the Great Tree, running down the centre, was not shown.  The KAV or middle column line of Divine Presence that permeates existence, makes up what is seen as the fifth ‘Great Tree’.  Together with the forty Sefiroth of the four Trees, they make the Fifty Gates spoken of in some texts.  The eleventh, mysterious non-sefira, Daat or Knowledge, representing direct experience, adds the eleventh circle of the Yemeni Ladder which is composed of Biblical verses.”

(See drawings of Jacob’s Ladder – the 4-World Trees – in this post, below.)

Halevi continues: “Jacob’s Ladder was rediscovered by my Instructor and another member of our circle.  The latter brought him the reproduction of a modern painting of kabbalistic Trees, set inside one another.  The idea, that within each Sefira there is a little Tree, and within that, another, and so on until there are ten, is well known but not in terms of a Ladder.  The painting had several Trees telescoped inside one another, but in no obvious order.  My colleagues then saw that if this image could be pulled out like a telescope, it might make more sense.  They redrew the model in terms of the Four Worlds (Ezekiel’s vision), and suddenly Jacob’s Ladder was there with the Great Tree on the central column.  When the Kabbalah group was shown this scheme, we were stunned.  It explained many of the obscure texts in Kabbalistic literature where a ‘Ladder of Ascent’ is mentioned.

“The Yemen manuscript (in the British Museum) was confirming evidence for the metaphysical model spoken of, in symbolic terms.  Discovering it (at a later date) was a great relief, as it backed the interlocked Ladder, as against the generally misunderstood view that the Worlds were joined by the bottom and top of their Trees.  This view did not explain how they interacted, whereas the overlaying and underlying upper and lower Trees did.”

Zev ben Shimon Halevi 2010

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(My grandfather Jim Ede had a bas-relief this same shape, carved out of dark greenish stone.  He played with the curves between his thumbs, and said it was very ancient and he could make it “bend”, but of course it didn’t.  I grew up with it.   But I cannot find a photo of it anywhere in his book of Kettles Yard “A Way of Life” – perhaps he carried it in his pocket.  It had at least five circles. Not surprisingly, when I was first shown Jacob’s Ladder in ’88,  I felt at home.)

This sketch is by his friend Dino Valenti:

vesica by dino valenti

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Gallery 1 – click on any image to view

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Note in one of these, the Seven Kabbalistic Heavens on the KAV – a numerical correspondence with the Chakra stem.  The Four Worlds are Aziluth (Emanation), Beriah (Creation, archangelic laws), Yetzirah (Formation, the psyche and astrology archetypes) and Assiyah (material world).   Our worldview is in general where the two lower worlds, Yetzirah and Assiyah, overlap.  The worldview alters radically as we ascend the Ladder and gain altitude and objectivity.

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Rose Tree Tifareth

Rose Tree Tifareth

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So what is a Chakra?

The Sanskrit word for this is “wheel”.  The wheel turns slowly at its hub, and moves faster around the rim.  The galactic wheel in which our solar system travels, moves at a rate we cannot conceive.   All originates from “spin” or torque:  the beginnings of the whirlings, or GILGALEM.   Waves for instance are spiral rotations;  and concentration of any medium, curves gravity towards and around itself.  The Sun as a gravitational focus, travels along a vast galactic spiral:  the planets spiral around him.  Any singularity produces a curvature of time and space – like water around a plughole.

A Chakra embodies this principle.   It has no speech or theory.  It is life – the thread pulled from above and below, vibrates, and the universe spins.  At school we made and played with spinzips.  We cut a disk out of card, coloured it, and threaded a loop of string through two holes (like a button) in its centre.   Grasping the loop’s two ends, we whirled the disk round and round, and when it was all wound up, we played the length of string like an accordian, in and out, watching it whirl and twist each way, watching the colours – and it made a wonderful whooshy spin-zippy sound.   Try it.

A Chakra, like a tree, grows up through its own concentric rings.  A chakra has a simultaneously horizontal and vertical movement – like the Sri Chakra Yantra.

Mandalas and Yantras are Chakras, as are concentric wavelengths and sound-waves.  A Mantra is a vibration of consciousness.  A Chakra vibrates from centre which is still, to circumference which is active:  from formlessness to form:  from the core of a tree through yearly rings, to the outer bark and upper leaf and birds.  A Chakra is everything we see around us, as our vision moves through the sphere.  Our spatial geometry is the sphere, whose limitless fluidity is supported by interior Tetrahedrons – the stability of existence.

diagram by Nassim Haramein, Resonance Project

diagram by Nassim Haramein, Resonance Project

A chakra is, experientially, EXISTENCE:  with – if we are fortunate – consciousness and peace:  sat chit ananda.

The sequence of seven interior Chakra notes in the subtle body, aligned to the spine, implies the Octave.  Normally, they are obscured by life.  Practices of Yoga and Alchemy assist and attune our Chakral consciousness – like cleaning a window:  a lens.

chakras spirals

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The seven Chakra tones suggest a spectrum with higher and lower tones beyond our sensory field:  and therefore, the rainbow.

Pure white light, growing up through the stem from ground, is a hidden treasure whose crest is the thousand petalled lotus.

The rainbow’s primordial refraction of light (fire) through water (rain) – converts white light to our seven perceptual tones (and all the shades between).  In this drawing, the seven Chakra centres in our body are aligned to seven levels – (or “heavens”) – in the Tree of Life.  The encircling  “fountain” through our auric field, has seven sheaths, and is brown, the colour of Earth.  With conscious breath, we inhale while visualising a fountain or a waterfall:  root and shoot:  the interpenetrating triangles, male and female, of the Seal of Solomon.

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The Chakras on the Tree of Life, rainbow spectrum

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4 January 1992 – What did I write, with this sketch ?

Surprise!  It was the first draft of Tsim Tsum, a “landmark” essay which I found and  blogged last summer, 18 July:  

“In Genesis, And There Was Light was the handwriting of space, time and matter visible to the eye – how it ballooned over the aeons.  To withdraw into attention – lotus, stem and flower – is to centre a radiating concentric ripple.  The infinite centre emits signals of itself.  A centre which emits a signal, concentrically, is a creation of time – relative to the receiver.  But the ripple which is the signal, is a wave, leaving the centre at the speed of light, perhaps.

“Sudden gleam of realisation in half-sleep last night:  if I emit rays of speed of light, then I myself travel (away from the emitting) at the speed of light.  What moves and what is moved is purely relative, in the universal constant of 186,000 miles per second … …  Listen carefully.  Matter is formed at the speed of Light, wherever on the circumference of the sphere whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere!”

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There follows my then favourite passage (slightly abridged) from Leo Schaya’s The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah:

“When Baal-Shem says that ‘God the infinite brings about a contraction and makes room in himself where the worlds can be created’, he is alluding to the Kabbalistic doctrine of tsim tsum … ‘The Holy One, blessed be he, withdrew his powerful light from one part of himself and left a void to serve as a place for cosmic expansion’;  it concerns ‘that part of the divine essence in which the light was weakened to allow the existence of souls, angels, angels and the material worlds.

“In reality, God the absolute One, has no ‘parts’, but an infinity of possibilities of which only the creatural possibilities have the illusory appearance of separate forms.  … The part from which the light has been withdrawn to make room for the cosmos, is nothing other than God’s receptivity which actualizes itself in the midst of his unlimited fullness.  This receptivity has a transcendent aspect and an immanent aspect.  ‘Above’, it is identified with Binah the supreme Mother, eternally filled with the infinite and luminous emanation of the Father Hokhmah.  ‘Below’, it is Malkuth (substance), the lower Mother or cosmic receptivity of God.” 

He is talking about Binah the Dark Mother inseminated by Hokhmah, wisdom;  and Malkuth the realm of Earth – the field.

Avocado 1973

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“Malkuth absorbs the influx from the Sefira of Benevolence, luminous and overflowing, and the influx from the Sefira of Severity (Rigour), dark or empty.” (This is like the tide, the breath, the chambers of the heart.  Malkuth realises tangibly, the principle.) 

“Thus, in contrast to Binah (the Understanding) which is always revealed as filled with the infinite, Malkuth the divine Immanence can take on the appearance of a dark void in the midst of its radiant fullness.  

yin yang peach

“Indeed, Binah is … without all rigour, though rigour emanates from Her, while Malkuth receives the emanations of rigour (Gevurah) together with those of grace (Hesed) to produce and dominate the cosmos and hold it in equilibrium through the interpenetration of two simultaneously opposite and complementary influxes.

(In other words, where was ever a big bang or beginning?)

“Through the effect of tsim-tsum, the divine fullness withdraws from the ‘lower Mother’ and awakens creative receptivity in her.  This takes on the aspect of the Void or ‘place of the world’, ready to receive cosmic manifestation.   Then all creative possibilities spring up from the existential seed which is left behind by divine Fullness on its withdrawal – as a luminous residue in the immanent emptiness.  Thus, thanks to the divine contraction and the void it brings about in the Shekhinah, the expansion of the world takes place;  and everything living in the immanence of God, is a small world created in the image of the macrocosm.  It is a void to which life is given by a luminous residue of the One Reality:  a central and divine spark which projects onto it the reflection of some eternal archetypes.” 

(As we saw in my earlier post, the balloon can only expand with an emptying lung.)

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Tree of Life showing Tarot arcana in the Sefiroth

Tree of Life showing the 22 Paths, hebrew alphabet, and the Tarot arcana in the Sefiroth

“Kabbalah expresses the same process as the pargod, or curtain.  The Idra Rabba Kadisha says of the Ancient of Ancients that he draws a curtain down before him’ through which his kingdom begins to take shape.” 

(The curtain is a starling’s breast, a raven’s wing, the High Priestess or veil – daughter of the stars.)

“This image and that of the tsim tsum not only point to the same truth, but complement each other.  God appears to withdraw himself from himself to the extent that he draws down a ‘curtain’ before him.  The curtain hangs before him like a darkness;  this darkness is none other than his cosmic receptivity, which allows his Reality to appear through it as a light.  But his Infinite Light appears through the dark veil only in a weakened, fragmented and limited way, which is the mode of existence of the finite. 

Gallery 2 – click on any image to view

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“God is hidden in everything he creates, the way light is contained in the innumerable reflections which produce a mirage …  The desert where the mirage is produced, represents the Void or Place of the World made by tsim tsum.  The (imperceptible) screen on which appear the vanishing forms that lead the pilgrim astray, is the pargod, curtain or mirror of Shekhinah (holy Bride, or Presence).”

Leo Schaya

avocado stone '94

avocado stone ’94

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“This passage parallels Ramana Maharshi’s analogy of the screen as the Self, on which are projected the movie-pictures of the world.  The movie-picture is the curtain.  That which is unchanging, onto which the world pictures are produced, is the Self, Brahman, the Holy One, I AM.

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Major Chadwick and Ramana Maharshi

Major Chadwick’s wallet, and Ramana Maharshi

“The speed of light, perceptible as a physical constant, is but a pale echo of the Holy One’s effulgence.   For the speed of Light, written everywhere in the universe – the Signature – is not … the Scribe!  It is only what appears on the curtain, the spectrum of the Rainbow.”

January 1992

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The Chakras on the Tree of Life, rainbow spectrum

The Chakras on the Tree of Life, rainbow spectrum

Now follows the sketch, and this explanation:

Embodying the Chakras on the Tree of Life 

“1. EARTH.  Malkuth.  Awareness in physical organs, and of surroundings.  Base of spine.  Tail.  Root of the Tree of Life.  Connection with the ground, through any part of the body, to the planetary core.  Lotus roots in soil.  Snake (Kundalini coil).  RED, fiery or rosy red.

“2. MOON.  Yesod.  Edited image of ‘I’ the doer.  Conception and infancy. Scenario which changes with conditions.  Screen of consciousness.  Picture of self.  Feelings and urges, emotions, appetites, ideation.  Sexual, naval, reproductive reservoir.  Personality.  Foundation of the Tree of Life, where the branches begin.  Conditioned censor (filter) of material from within or from without.  ORANGE.

“3. MERCURY AND VENUS. Hod & Netzach.  To left and right, the child’s mother and father branch out from Yesod, as their type of interior chatter.  Observe mental activity, processing, and the rhythms of breath, pulse and desire, hunger or habit, generating energy and nature’s warmth.  Awareness and submission to the dance.  Seat of everyday mind-stuff and response to stimuli, reactivity, fears.  Internal politics, environmental information, sights and sounds.  Solar plexus; kidneys; YELLOW.

“4. SUN.  Tifareth.  “I” that AM.  Hod & Netzach converge through Triad of Awakening, upon the Heart of the Tree, its centre stem (green sap) of the Lotus through which all light travels up, down, receiving above as below, the wisdom.  Beauty and rest.  A decisive factor through lifetimes.  Concentration, freedom, acuity, detachment, enquiry.  The heart, to both sides of sternum, a depth of green transparency:  solutions.  Esoteric Sun of the soul.  From the seed, the shoot grows upward and the root downward.  Source.  Heart chakra – GREEN.

“5. MARS AND JUPITER.  Gevurah & Hesed.  Branching again to left and right, becoming blue; throat area.  The balance of rigour and grace (benevolence), centred upon Tifareth forms the Triad of the Soul where we are tested.  Faculties for discrimination, taste, equilibrium, evolution.  Force and Form.  Parental archetypes – the archway.   (“All experience is an arch where thro’ gleams that untravell’d world whose margin fades, for ever and for ever as I move.”)  Pillars Jakin and Boaz, of Solomon’s Temple.  Throat chakra and expression – BLUE.

“6. SATURN AND URANUS (OR STARRY SKY).  Binah & Hokhmah.  Quantum leap through deep indigo effulgent darkness, over the abyss of Daat, forms with Tifareth the Great Triad of the Spirit – a curtain filled with stars.

“Daat is a non-Sefira beyond and yet within the whole Tree, and even encompassing it. In each Sefira, the worlds meet – tetrahedral vesica pisces – and so Daat is called “Union”.  Daat’s region is the subatomic worlds.

yeah say vesica j&d10

“Receptive cosmic intellect – creation’s blueprint or understanding – and the wisdom-flash of Light before it congeals to the speed of light.  Intellect receives Light as a cable receives and contains the current.  Third Eye chakra between the brows:  intuition and prophecy. Luminous VIOLET, like sapphire crystals.

“7.  NEPTUNE.  Convergence upon Kether, the Divine.  Lord Mother, thou Art God.  Just above crown of head or infant fontanelle – source opening, white light unadorned, thirty thousand petalled lotus.  WHITE.

“8. PLUTO.  Daat:  completion of musical octave, by turning within the Tree.  The in-turning suggests the Primordial One’s withdrawal or interiority, to yield a place for Creation.  In Vedanta and Yoga, the third eye bows to the heart.  The thread on which the worlds are strung, is called sushumna – the nerve current from muladhara (root) to sahasrara (thousand petalled lotus) through which Kundalini is made to rise.

“The centre stem of the Tree, between Kether and Tifareth, central and upper spine column, carries the vast collective mystery, quantum factor, key hole to death, birth and the interpenetration of the Worlds.  See through a glass darkly.  The white lotus bows as the veil of embodied identity sunders.   Path of return from the Crown to heart’s Source.  Contact with the deep.  INDIGO.

(In this context, The Seven Year Cycles on the Tree of Life may be of interest also.)

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“I found that to have viable wings – the subtle opening between shoulder blades when all the Worlds connect (heart chakra and Daat) – a viable Tail must connect my dragons’ Head to Earth.  The Tail performs the functions of balance and rootedness, and is formed from the two base chakras, Earth and Moon (Malkuth, Yesod, red and orange.)   Elder lizard vertebrae!”

January 1992

tree of life, rainbow spectrum

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This is not a traditional view of the chakras:  the colour scale is not that of the Builders of the Adytum, nor of Vedanta, theosophy or G.D., nor of the Tree School.  It made sense to me because it is simple, and takes me up the Tree;  it fits the bill sufficiently, and is beautiful.   These concepts with the colour were germinal, and helped me to build.  They are not rigid.  So nowadays I do not worry when esoteric models appear to disagree, nor try to reconcile them, but place them side by side – as languages for the same thing.

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1992 Concludes:

“I perceive the rainbow Chakra column “Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain” within the centre of the Tree, enhancing the structural Kabbalah.  The Tree and its 10 Sefiroth are a Mandala, a concentric circle or auric egg/seed of light around the rising pillar of the rainbow which centrally cleaves the seed.  In the same way, our orbit around the Sun travels with it as a dimensional spiral.

“Sap rises through the stem to the Sun, through osmosis.  Moisture, lifted from the ground through absorbtion and evaporation, travels through a semi-permeable membrane – the stem cells.  It is drawn up to occupy the ‘vacuum’ of varying fluidic densities in neighbouring cells.  It is drawn up to the light against terrestrial pressure.  It is green in leaf, and embraces the Sun.

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“Physically – world of Assiyah – the ground-level where the growing Tree or plant appears, is Hod-Netzach, and at Tifareth the green grass flourishes.  Below this membrane of the physical world, the psyche exists vegetatively – according to habit and to the seasons.  The soul, questing upward through the earthy membrane like a blade of spring crocus, discovers air.  Deep under the ground, where roots quest delicately in the dark towards their antipodes, it is red or rose-red – the warmth of Mother Earth’s inner fire.   No tall Temple spire can be built without a foundation equally deep.  If the root does not penetrate the earth to stabilize it in the sky, it will crack and fall down.  If we get caught in the astral sky ungrounded, we wrap illusory demons of guilt, pride and fear around ourselves;  for we still dwell underground, a prey to unconscious forces.

“So see to the root.  Then ascend the mountain path.”

January 1992

Awakening

Paths of Awakening. Colours of Sefiroth are shown in BOTA Queen scale, not as the Chakra spectrum discussed here. As the rainbow, we are looking at: Malkuth red. Yesod orange. Hod-Netzach yellow and Tifareth green.

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Gallery  3 – click on any image to view

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spirals & jacobs ladder

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Finally:  what is practical?   When strong images of colour and growth are generated, they link with the ageless prototypes.  Everything we touch is vibrational. Words are initial tetrahedral processes to support our understanding.   After they are built into colour and sound and light, we no longer need to remember them.  The key then  is intention, love and goodwill.  So we can be seated, or out walking.   We can make ourselves a fountain, a channel to receive and to give.  We can savour the colours and their resonance.   Through red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet, is threaded the KAV, the white brilliance, the light everlasting.

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Aahh!  Those far off days at art school …

Gallery 4 – click on any image to view

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These were done  in 1968, looking at an object or picture through a tilted magnifying glass or lens –  the light spills out of the earth’s dark cloth:  the tones are dragged apart.

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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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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 https://janeadamsart.wordpress.com/