Sacred India Tarot Archive – Creation of Staves 5 and 6: Ravana Falls

Continuing the Sacred India Tarot Archive by Jane Adams and Rohit Arya:

In thy valorous strength - rosicrucean emblem 2

In thy valorous strength – rosicrucean emblem 2

We all have our interior demons and resistances to fight:  and in the world out there, they are plain to see.  In the present era of Pluto (upheaval and transformation) moving through Capricorn (established institutions), nothing can be hidden any longer – all is visible, each shadow is upturned to the light.  Every hoary Karmic poison along the centuries erupts into a birth-bed for the new Dharma – a changed order of human values.  Pluto went into Capricorn in 2008 with a financial crash, and will enter Aquarius in 2023/24.

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It is interesting to note that in the Indian mythology, demons are rarely evil per se.  They are gifted forces of the mind and spirit.  They have a tendency to overrun their citadels and cause the chaos and self-doubt that every creative artist must navigate.  The Yoga Vasishta is filled with stories of powerful demons who attained enlightenment, humility and liberation through the intensity of their concentrated tapas – spiritual practice over the aeons.  Brahma the creator-god could refuse them nothing:  the demonic force has this potential for purity.  Therefore there was always a respectful interaction between the gods and the demons – see card 6 (above) in the Sacred India Tarot: the story of Kaccha and Devyani.   For the gods, the demonic energy is at source divine, and they cannot live without it.  The Greek word “daemon” is a creative spirit.

Rohit’s writing below, throws an interesting slant onto the demonic “bhakti” – the constant focus in the demon’s mind, on God as the foe, in due course liberates.

In the Ramayana, Ravana the demon King overreached himself by kidnapping Rama’s wife Sita;  in so doing, he put the cosmic balance out of order, and faced defeat.

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Visual reference for Kumbhakarna

Visual reference for Kumbhakarana

Rohit Arya’s Notes – 2003

Card Five – Kumbhakarana Falls.  Kumbhakarana is to be depicted as an enormous armoured giant, holding a huge club towering over Ravana and the rest of the battlefield.  He has four fiery arrows stuck in him which will lop off his legs from the knees and the arms from the elbows, while the fifth arrow fired by Rama is about to cut off his head.  The five wands could be depicted as five fiery arrows that Rama uses to kill the giant brother of Ravana.

From Rohit’s Book with the Deck:

Kumbhakarana, middle brother to Ravana and Vibheeshana, takes the field against Rama.  It is an action born of desperation, for the Rakshasa (demon) forces have been decimated in the preceding days … Kumbhakarana is the most gigantic warrior in the universe, a great intellectual and highly spiritually developed.  He shares Vibheeshana’s opinion that Ravana’s incompetent blundering has brought them to disaster, but war is upon them and he selflessly agrees to do his duty. 

He knows that Rama is God, but in his estimation nothing could be more honourable than to die for his country.  Death at Rama’s hands is guaranteed liberation, and Kumbhakarana is disgruntled with his unlucky life.  He has been tricked by the Devas into sleeping for six months at a stretch, awakening for only a day.  Ravana has untimely roused him, and his strength is not at its peak.  Nevertheless he unleashes carnage of a ghastly and terrifying nature that forces Rama himself to fight. 

This is a unique and startling form of Bhakti – devotion to God – called ‘vipareetha karani’, the path of opposition.  You literally fight with God, as the foe is ever present in the enemy’s mind.  This is a tamasic (inertia-inducing) form of meditation and constant awareness of the Divine.  It guarantees liberation, but at the cost of your life!  It is the rocket route to the Divine.  Kumbhakarana chooses this conflict-path to achieve what would otherwise take many lifetimes. 

Rama understands this, and is also pleased with his heroic loyalty to his people. 

This card signifies inner and outer growth:  a struggle and challenge confidently taken up – perhaps a group effort or sharing of creative endeavour.  Lessons that life teaches in battle.  Place spiritual priorities above mundane ones.  Patience is well rewarded, but lots of it is required.  Martial arts.  Focus on one thing and see it through.

Shadow:  Trying to take on more than you can handle – an inflated sense of power.  Blindly supporting and following the leader.  Confusion in thinking leads to flailing about:  quarrels and disputes, vainglorious boasting.  Overwork and strain impacts health – the card of the moonlighter!  Irritation with incompetence.  Wishful thinking and writers block.  Young children act up.

Your expectations are getting in the way of what is actually possible.  Are you competing or getting into an impossible situation?

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Jane’s Notes

There are parallels here with the Eight and the Nine of Arrows, where the great warrior king surrenders his life to Krishna, understanding that he will at last be liberated from his duty.

This great demon – Kumbhakarana – also had a duty: his loyalty to the Lord Ravana and the realm of the rakshasas.  His willingness to disable his own magnificence, to be Ravana’s fore-runner in defeat, and to agree to fight when not at the peak of his powers, is an astonishing and moving sight.  His hands holding weapons, appear to be raised in surrender.  The deep intelligence is in his eyes;  the out-thrust tongue is demonic like a gargoyle, yet also giving his all.

I painted Rama lightly armed, as befits a young David to this Goliath.  Accuracy of aim takes priority over displays of martial magnificence.  He shoots the demon in five places. The outline of Kumbhakarana’s human pentagram begins to collapse.

Rama aims at the third eye – the coup de grace.   I found it difficult to arrange the scenes in these long narrow cards compositionally:  yet the great demon on his mountain range suggests a different dimension of space and time.

Psychologically it is an extraordinary event to meet and engage with these forces in the soul.

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Sacred India Tarot - Five of Staves/Wands

Sacred India Tarot – Five of Staves/Wands

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Rohit Arya’s Notes – 2003

Card Six: Victory – Ravana Falls. This should be easy to depict, though one arrow should be clearly penetrating the navel of Ravana which was where he stored the elixir that renewed him each time he was wounded or had a head cut off. We need only Rama and Ravana in the card, though celebrating monkeys in the background might bring out the ‘Victory’ aspect of the card meaning.

visual reference for the fall of ravana

visual reference for the fall of ravana

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(respect for demons – yoga vasishta – tifareth 6 – danda – dharma – guru mantra)

From Rohit’s Book with the Deck
Ravana has destroyed the resources of his kingdom and sent all his generals and relatives to their death, but he is still intransigent about releasing Sita.  He is in thrall to his rapidly fraying reputation, still manifesting aplomb and insouciance in a cataclysmic situation.  He has assumed his most fearful form, convinced that the fame of his exploits combined with his horrible shape will dazzle and intimidate Rama – the yokel from the forests.

He has rested on his laurels so much that he cannot, dare not, recognise his slide into delusional ineptitude.

Rama is called the image or embodiment of Dharma.  Rama is beyond form so everybody projects their own ideal upon him.  Hence his chameleon-like appearance in the suit.  For Ravana, he is a meek, forest dwelling hermit – hence he appears so.

For all Ravana’s strength of belief, danda has descended upon him in the form of Rama’s astras.  Rama uses the Brahmastra – the deadliest arrow (speculated to be a nuclear weapon) created by Brahma.  Ravana wasn’t totally wrong in feeling invulnerable.  Only the final never-to-be-used weapon could vanquish him;  it was a small validation.

Rama sends Laxmana to hear the dying words of what was the Age’s mightiest king: “Do not put off till tomorrow the good you could do today.  I could have turned the oceans into sweet water and been hailed as a benefactor of humanity.  Now I die with tarnished glory as a kidnapper of the wives of others.”

It is an astonishing summation of wasted potential and opportunity.

In a card reading:  victory and success.  Triumph and recognition of one’s work;  public acclaim.  Vindication of one’s course of action – freedom from fears and anxieties.  Very good for students and intellectuals.  Period of unusual resilience and recuperative powers. Reaching the next level of skill or qualifications.  Aggressively seeking the limelight.

Shadow:  resting on past laurels – a legend in one’s own mind.  A conclusive victory eludes you.  Too proud to acknowledge one is losing it – “remember, Caesar, thou art mortal.”

Don’t let all this acclaim inflate you to absurd levels of self aggrandisement.  What new challenges do you need to take up?

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Sacred India Tarot - six of Staves/wands

Sacred India Tarot – six of Staves/wands

Jane’s Notes
The missile enters the dantien – the source of all Ravana’s delusional heads.  The dantien (below the navel) is our body’s gravitational and subtle centre:  through yoga and t’ai ch’i, it  can earth and quieten the mind’s electricity.  This card is like the Tower – to collapse walls of falsehood or belief.

The danda (see Rohit’s description above) is a sacred staff.  It is traditionally used by hermits and aryas, and placed in temples.  Throughout the suit of Staves/Wands, the danda plays a significant role, as conduit of power and authority.  Rohit mentions also the astra – the weapon by which Ravana was slain.  Astras are intense aerial vibrations:  a focused mantra is an astra – it commands the elements by force of sound and concentration.

See the Guru Mantra Bhashya in this blog, and Part 2 of the same, for the rich symbolism of danda and astra.

The danda lends its name to a game played in India:

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Correspondence – Rohit’s feedback on cards 5 and 6 of Staves

Wand 5 – The energy and power in this card is great, and the Kumbhakarana is perfect.  Rama needs some golden body armour and the moustache needs to go.  As a composition it perfectly conveys the sense of the card.  The monkey’s vantage point of the events on the card is a nice touch.

Wand 6 – Rama needs to be depicted in accordance with the rest of the suit, he has suddenly taken to wearing a dhoti, he has a moustache and no helmet or armour.  But the composition is fine, and the Ravana is a superb example of unrepentant defiance.

Correspondence – Jane: 
Re Rama – all the examples you sent me had him moustachio’d, and so do books here, so I thought that was the way he is traditionally represented;  with the possibility he might sometimes shave for Sita!  Or the fact that an epic such as this covers much spacetime – note that the buddha series also changes the physical features somewhat, according to his states of wisdom.  Anyway, we can adjust this detail if required.  I shall also add some body armour to the shooting of Ravana’s brother.

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The fall of Ravana and his brother remind me of another great bowman in our Sacred India Tarot Archive:

Sacred India Tarot card 16 - Siva Tripurantaka - the Tower.  With his arrow or astra, Siva pulverised three demon cities which were aligned for just a second, once every thousand years.

Sacred India Tarot card 16 – Siva Tripurantaka – the Tower. With his arrow or astra, Siva pulverised three demon cities which ravaged the universe but were aligned for just a second, once every thousand years.

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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 http://aryayogi.wordpress.com   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). Watch this space.

All original 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/

Tales from The Watershed – “The Violet Crystal”

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theatre at Tintagel

Theatre in Tintagel, Cornwall. 

This is an experiment.  I have a collection of “Tales from the Watershed”.  These are short stories written down from my dreams recorded in 1974-1977.  I call that period The Watershed, because from its stress and upheaval, as from a mountain range, my life flows a mandala, past, future and all around.  It formed the bedrock geology of my (later) Kabbalist and Hermetic “re-discoveries”.   I shall include the tales in this blog, from time to time, as they were my raw material.  There are already a few, embedded in their respective posts – you can find them in the “Search” box or in the Watershed Tales category.  The stories so far, are “Foal”, “Sunflowers”, “The Man in the Ravine”, a mention of “Jupiter & Rosa”, and episodes from “The Rain Check Dream”.

The Violet Crystal is a bardo of interconnective relationship essences: a state of becoming. Years later, I did a sequence of paintings inspired by it.  (See also, Gallery below this post.)

Einstein and a centre pillar

Einstein and a centre pillar

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“The Violet Crystal” – (Dreams No.227,  21 January 1976)

I WAS NOT sure whether this was really my home or not.   It seems to be my flat, but I may have inherited it,  or be there on sufferance.   I spent the night there.   It’s a long place divided into two sections.  One area which I do not remember well, is rather cramped and crowded;  the other part is a big, very spacious room with a double bed in it,  and not much else.   Somewhere in the centre of this room was a pillar from floor to ceiling, and resting against this slender column was a big crystal or rock of uncut precious stone.   The crystal glinted peculiar hues of violet, pink and purple light in relation to some other similar object nearer the ceiling, and according to the way these two harmonised in their relationship.   It was very unfamiliar, as if not of this world, and of a shape that I found sometimes displeasing and clumsy, it was a rock,  it was very strange;  and I grew to value it very much.

It became, in relation to the few other things in the room, extraordinarily beautiful.   This was to do with the way that I saw it, or juxtaposed its relation to other things by moving it or them a little, so that they caught the light in a particular and deeply satisfying way,  like a marriage.

The formation,  though not large,  dominated the place with its atmosphere and the violet light within it.

The place did not “belong” to me, even though I lived here, and was visited here.   It was a treasure entrusted to my keeping which awed me a little.   There was nothing recognisable of mine here, no pictures.   It was almost bare.   It had so powerful an essence or personality of its own, that it needed no decoration.   It seemed to contain almost too much already.   At the end I touched and arranged two windowless curtains at the far wall of the room, so that their pink-violet colour lent its own intensity, moved by an unseen wind;  there may have been windows behind them.

A man stayed the night a day or two ago.   He was a stranger, he was not Louis.   I remember nothing of him, except that I wrote down his name twice in thick black writing in my address book and I wondered why; and crossed out the second entry of his name and address.

houses by the sea

Houses of soul along the sea

The other visitor was my sister.   I think she also stayed a night here.   She wrote in a diary, just like me, and she kept leaving it open so that furtively I could look at the page and what she had written.   In it she revealed herself.   I thought she wouldn’t like me to see it and read it, yet I was determined to do so if possible – and she kept leaving it around lying open, and I saw scraps of it,  tried to read it.   There was anger in it.   She seemed to be having problems with her husband.   She was angry with him, they were sexually incompatible and this was a source of terrible shame, like mine with Louis.   I longed to read more of her inner wealth and honesty, but I couldn’t trust that she would allow me to;   I did it behind her back.   She wrote also about the riding stable where I used to work when I was twelve years old, about the field with its trees,  the mud and the horses;   this place was essential to her revelations.

Amethyst 1a

She lives just up the road along a terrace of seaside houses; I know that she lives there in her actual Bishops Lydeard house in Somerset, and when I went to visit her there a little later,  I found that she had pasted her open diary to the window of her kitchen so it could be read by all who passed by.   I began to realise that she actually wanted it to be read, she wanted me to read it, like a call for help.   But I never had time to read more than a snatch of it at a time, for I was always waking up, or worried in my travels up and down this street, lest I oversleep, forget to write down the dream, not get up when I should,  or get to where I ought to be;   and all my teeth were hurting again;  something seemed to be happening to them, just as in my dream last week.   I tested and felt them with my finger, they were all in place, and not clenched or jumbled up, yet the muscles along my gums and the roof of my mouth were tense with some memory,  with pain.   The pain was not as bad as last time,  but I couldn’t work it out.   I wondered at its source.   Was it self pity?   a calling for attention?    identity problem?   All my teeth were in their usual places, though exhausted and sore.

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Tides

At the school playground by the sea, a large fat boy or man put on huge inflated white shoes which should enable him to walk on the water like Jesus.   He started off, walking backwards over the incoming waves.   His movement was clumsy and he soon fell.   I thought he was rather stupid to do it this way.   The shoes were so ungainly, and why go backwards with the waves pushing him forwards?  What could he be getting out of it?   It was as if he should be water-ski-ing but had opted for this laborious and unrewarding sport instead.   He got into the sea confidently, walked backwards with difficulty, fell in and tried again and again.

It looks easy from outside, for Louis to write short stories,  to dip into source,  to allow the sea to flow into him by travelling back into it,  his hinterland …   but then we are not doing it.  He is.   And the incoming waves just overturn his progress, and process as they must, to break upon the shore, the seaside town, the world.   Why is he facing the wrong way?

I found a better way for myself, while playing with some people over the massed bulges of inflated rubber that the sea had now become.   I jumped and played on these,  and learnt to keep my balance.   I too wore special shoes, but they were of a better design.   It was good to be in company –  I do not know who they were – doing our tumbling acts together,  and attaining a certain skill and dexterity.

(Postscript … the way treads the tides of panic, receiving them in full so that clarity dispels them.    Now I see the waves on the shoreward sea, and how it felt in my violet crystal room;  I was so lonely here.  Out there on the sea and beach, the world was playing.  I want to go out there and try to join in and do it too.)

All of this took place in a greyness like twilight, early morning,  the still heat of summer midnight or the greyness of the mind.   The air was slightly oppressive.

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the sea subconscious 2

Back in the flat with the violet crystal, I discovered something else.   I could hear the sound of the sea,  and I went to an unexplored side of the room and found a window;  and when I opened this window I found it looked out onto a wall and bushes leading away from me at a right-angle, so that I could probably climb out and along it.   And here indeed was the sea!   deep and grey in thick mist.   The waves were rushing along the very walls of the house.  The sea was just outside my window, and yet there was this wall also, like an L- extension of the roof, which I could at a pinch climb along, so as to be nearer still.

The sea seemed to be thus enclosed in a big back yard;  yet it was not enclosed.  It heaved with all its power and cold grey quiescent menace, and I could not see from where it came.   The waves appeared out of a dense mist.    It was fairly calm now, but there would be storms.   And already I wanted to climb out along the wall to sit in a place where the waves would be coming right at me;  for perhaps the wall marked the shoreline, a beach of rocks.   I looked forward to the storms, to the thunder of it.    And at some point, Peter my father joined me and stood in the window also with me, and shared my delight in this discovery.   I was  pleased and so satisfied that he should have cause to envy me, a room with such a view!

Amethyst 3

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I knew by now that the subconscious sea washed the whole terrace on which I lived, right beyond me and up the road, to my sister’s house and further,  though she would be higher above it than I,  being on a hill.   We lived on the same seaside terrace then, and the incongruity of this L-shape wall from my house, with its bushes, was an extension of reality which I didn’t even try to explain.

There was a whole condition of things which irritated her.   It was an opening, a window into her, a rare offering of herself to me.   She wrote clear, large and black in her big diary, that her husband didn’t satisfy her, that she was angry with him,  he came too soon;  and about the field with mud and horses.   I didn’t feel particularly sad for her.   We are sisters.   I was glad that she too, doesn’t find life to be all roses.

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The beyond within appearance

The beyond within appearance

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GALLERY  – paintings 1988.  With photos of the sea by Marisa – Cornwall 2011

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The Tree is a Fountain: The Man in the Ravine

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This post, and the next few – though probably not consecutively – will include a story from my Watershed collection.   In the mid 1970s I went through a very difficult time, which flowered at night – or under earth – into hundreds of vivid dreams, many of them visionary.

I wrote them all down, and years later, began to de-code and compose some of them into stories.  They became my experiential laboratory; the archetypes arose. 

I call it the Watershed, because it is like a mountain ridge.  The “waters” from it, irrigate the channels of my whole life and landscape around it, far into the past and future.  Because of the Watershed, I don’t perceive a life-time as a linear progress, but as a solar orbital system:  a sphere.  A pulse.

My spacetime diagram is of a leaf dropped on water: the concentric ripple.  The same are soundwaves, light cones, and the Watershed: from which the events of a lifetime descend and flow to manifest in all directions …the way a tree grows.   We are not normally sensitive enough or “programmed” to detect the wavelengths of warning and encouragement which come from “future” wisdom.  But they are there!  and hindsight always reveals them.

A peak of intensity in any lifetime irradiates the past and future equally.  It is that life’s gravitational centre and purpose to be.  It is like the circling beam of a lighthouse.

Thus we are seen from “Above” – like ourselves looking down at rain-circles on the lake.

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Comprehending this, is in the way we breathe consciously.  What is the fountain breath?

The fountain breath is this, in whatever shape or teaching it takes, up and down, root and shoot.

Invoking the very best in life:  peace to all beings:  a prayer for a friend in pain, or those in the storm:  a drawing together of the Great Work … light the candle, focus the third eye, and stretch open armed  a Tree, a Chalice, an Albion witch, moving a little with the dancing Ch’i.

The Tree’s branches receive the sun.  The sun bedews and sparkles in them.  The sunlight trickles down them into the trunk.  The trunk with all its oaky bark flowing upward is a fountain, resplendent from the ground.   This is “meditation”.

tree diva

Think of the trees everywhere now, whose leaves turn gold and fall, preparing for the winter nude, the cold deep dark waters of polar tide – the tide beneath the waves;  receive back into essence the wet, wild kingdom, Mother Ceres of the tiny seeds that grow – Persephone in Hades – in the ground.

Ceres & John 

Drenched I am with the rain, the frost and sea salt, dark and drenched and wet my wood:  and vibrant is my capillary in the sky, its leafy burden shed.  Vibrant are my fingers in the silver sky – the throbbing of the festival.

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Here is one of my Stories of Life – 

“The Man in the Ravine” …  Dreams No.189  27 September 1975

Events led me down the valley into this very deep ravine.

It is like the tale of the Water of Life.   Three princes set out to find the Water of Life for their sick father.  The first two were walled up in a ravine along the way because of their churlish behaviour.   Others, I know, have been here before me,  and come to grief.   Perhaps I’ve come here to find out what happened to them.

The ravine had sheer high cliffs that walled it around three sides.   It was a cul de sac.  So deep down was it enclosed that in here it was always night or a very murky twilight.  If you looked far up, right up the mountain walls, you could see daylight or the sinking sun.   But the base of the ravine was not much larger than the floor of a large room or hall.   To reach its depths you went down a natural stairway of rock, a kind of ramp.   Over the floor of the ravine you had to pick your way over the mud and over the puddles of water murkily shining.   It had a warm and velvety miasma.   I explored it carefully.   I had to cover the whole of it or reach the enclosing wall over on the far side, what was I looking for?   Because assuredly I was seeking out something.   What happened to those poor fools right down in this darkness from whence if you looked up the walls you could see, like a great rose, the day above?   The place was repugnant.

Suddenly I stepped in some soft mud and was sinking.   I had waded into one of those bogs that suck you down and down into the morass to drown.   I fell full length on the mud and struggled to get my right foot free of the all-enveloping ooze, and I succeeded.   I pulled myself out.   Then I went over to the right side of the ravine where there were some big stagnant puddles, and began to wash my feet and sandals which were covered with sticky smelly mud.   From there I watched the bog where I had almost sunk.   It was displaying a curious activity.   A sort of waterspout or turbulence of liquid mud began to jet out of it like a fountain.   Out of that unrest came a small solidity, a box or a square tin;  it fell and lay upon the quivering mud.   Then out of that mud came a man!

A man lived here, within the mud, within the bottomless floor of the ravine.   He emerged, a stocky sort of man.   The place had been disturbed by a question, and out he came.   It was extraordinary that he should live and breathe down under the mud.   He had a malign power.

We had a conversation, him by his bog-hole and me by the puddles where I’d been cleaning my feet.  He is a sorceror.   He causes in me very strange physical changes.  A certain look from his eye immobilizes all my nerve.   I can see him a little.   Stocky, squat, with dark curling hair.   The lines of his face flow downward.

“What is in the box?”   I ventured to wonder.

“I am,”  he said.

That makes perfect sense.   The box is discarded.   It contains me.   The mud erupting flies apart into disjointed brown crescents of time.  Between them are swirls of chaos.   The newborn cannot read the signs.   Lots of animals live down here.   My right arm has gone.   But now I have three heads,  and I see and believe in a different world from each one of them.   I am terrified.   But I have been told to open to my fear.   Now I am an animal, a creature I do not know.   Now I have branches like lopped limbs from a tree.   This branch waves from one of the rock walls of the ravine.  But this one too is deep in the silty floor.   Yet another strains in the sky in a great bolt of wind.   All over the ravine is scattered the (w)hole not I.   It is the darkness.   It is the vivid strength of the man in the mud, his trident, his trident touches and jerks me into three-plane being.

I am the Great Cat.   I am the life that runs in cold metallic vein through the fish.  I run like a rat, the colour of the ground.   I am the bull and the goat and the twins.   We are having a kind of conversation, him by his bog-hole and me …  ah yes, that is it,  he has stopped the time.   The quintessence of each animal spirit broods in this place where no beginning ends.   “You are too mercurial …”  but my shoulder has burst.   I cannot describe it.   I fall yet I stand.   I have no control over any of these changes that succeed one another rapidly as air.   They are all in his alien hand, whatever he draws or gestures,  that I form,  and then form un-begun suddenly an owl.   The bird is shrieking.   The form like soft clay silent is putty and quicksilver in his alien hand, my penance.   This is not me.   It is according to his powers.   I accept this, for I trust him.   I have no choice but to trust him.   There is no other way save submission to these curious disturbances and transformations.   Some of them are painful like fire and blood.   Some are nauseating, and some are cataracts of water:   it is a tempest buried in earth.   This is where I am.   I am here with this man of the bog and his powers, and that is that.

That is clay on the potter’s wheel.   That is the bed of the river.

“Water,”  I said to him  “the Water of Life.”   (I think the others were devoured by the bog).

“You are their successor,”  he replies  “but you didn’t succumb you know, to what drowned them”  “What was that?”   “It was the walls you know.   Walls they rode themselves into, grew up around them.  These people were interested only in their own ends.   You must pay the price.   But we can speak.   Here we may speak.   There never was any prince with whom I could hold conversation.  This is unique you know.   You must stay.   You are the first of them returned.   So I must hold you here.”   And thrice with his wand he struck me.  Water gushed from this rock, this matter.   Life.   Cried out.

I am the prisoner of the man of the bog who till now killed everyone,  the wrestler without a friend.   The angel is all of the night.   A curious friendship seems to be developing between us.  In this dim grey light we became close.   He came over to the puddles where I am and I stroked his arm a little, to teach myself to like him.   He didn’t bite.   He didn’t stomach-sickeningly change me into anything else.   He emerged, a stocky sort of man, so darkly invincible that my strange commitment to him must be total, else I die in darkness, unseen.   I surrendered.  There is no escape from the ravine.

Once he told me, gesturing skyward, that in the east with dawn, there rises the lotus of a thousand petals white and pure.   It floats over the azure sky, the tip of every petal blushes with gold, but earth dark,  deep and dank holds her underwater root.   He said that in the west this flower sets.   It furls into a great rose, rosy red song of the heart, the scent of the Spirit.   I have to learn to love and obey the one who reveals to me such things.   He is stronger than me.   Many of me that came down here before, have come to grief, and are prisoners.   My bond with him may release them.   “You are their ransom,” he said “if you survive.   There are more to come, Proserpine.”

Whether or not I wanted to escape from the ravine, I cannot now remember, nor what I did in captivity.   I know only what the hostage knows.   He was stronger than me.

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This post combines a Pluto initiation with the fountaining tree of life.  The pictures and images for this, proceed in waves, an alternating current.

Tree lovers, Quantock hills

Dark Hades and Persephone the day.

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Trees love, by a creek in Arizona

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Descend:  look down from the cliff top through trees to Sea – (Alet, St Malo, Brittany 1988)

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Stone slab and secret hieroglyph (language) 1987

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Hermes and Persephone 1987.

This drawing has many Hadean elements:  three ears of wheat, the Goddess under earth, the ferrying of souls.  The curving spinal column is a “shorthand” reminder of my ancient lizard nature, containing all those souls and deaths of life and consciousness to come – in horizontal mode.  The ears of wheat are seasonal appearances.  Hermes Trismegistos, top left, oversees.

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Pluto and Persephone ’87

Persephone meets her subterranean dark lover.  Alchemical engravings often feature a Saturnine gentleman with an injured leg.  I used to see this in my dreams also.  It is a place or a someone where some healing or completing or time is needed.  And time and the way it unfolds and manifests, is Karma !

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Plutonic Mysteries (1) 

This was the first time I twigged the graphic relation of the Venus and Mars glyphs.

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Plutonic Mysteries ’87(2)

Looking down through spinal chord into a Yab-Yum of sorts.  I didn’t know the terminology when I did the drawings, and had not heard of Kundalini.  The language arose spontaneously.  It was explosively satisfying to create and combine the light and darkness.  I drew quite slowly and thoughtfully in the surfacing storm.

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Elephant trees: Alet, near St Malo, Brittany ’87

Studying Castaneda’s books at the time, these drawings explore and outline the space between the branches and the leaves – my defining lesson as a visual artist.

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Conference in the  Wind:  Alet, near St Malo, Brittany ’87

Another outdoor study.  Tipp-ex is a marvellous enhancer, depending what you are drawing.

Tree space atoms ’87

Living upside down and inside out like this, was scary and exhilerating – every atom of the air alive.  Space and the feeling of interior and outer space, is the key.  That same awareness implanted the dimensions of the Cube of Space and the Tree of Life, yet to come.  It acts subconsciously nowadays, but informs my life and work, generally.

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4our Trees

They form a four-towered “tower of alchemy” – the vessel, our body, the Tree of Life all in one.  For a lucid and detailed guide to this practice, combining Kabbalah, the Grail, Yoga, breath work and Tibetan Buddhism, see The Tower of Alchemy by David Goddard, Weiser books 1999.

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Caduceus Tower Tree 2002

Here is everything combined – the caduceus or healing polarity, the Kabbalah Tree, the levels of the Tower, an oyster idea, and a stimulating problem for the right and left brain:  try to draw the solar and lunar spirals, both hands simultaneously, crossing over, without stopping or leaving the paper.

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Grail Trees 2002

Sanctus sanctorum:  rose cross:  the trees’ rings:  oyster shell:  pyramid:  pearl

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Fountain linga 

A much more recent drawing, done earlier this year.  I copied it from a photo of a carved Shinto shrine in The Cosmic Embrace by John Stevens.  Apart from reminding me of the Fountain symbolism in trees and human beings, it makes an unusual door-knocker.

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Tree Spirit ’88

This image combining bud, yoni and encircling growth of time, is in my mind’s eye this week.  It is like a baby’s hand in utero.

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The Chakras on the Tree of Life (1992)

There are seven surrounding sheaths, probably for the planets.  The sheaths of a tree become its bark.  They fountain through the crown, and encircle again the root.

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Roots in the Quantock hills

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Tree seed Siva Shakti Yantra

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31 October, this morning’s thought before posting:  regarding cosmic synchrony, with life’s small details.  This is more apparent to some of us, than to others.  The visibility depends rather on the type of astrology pattern we are born into – and whether we can honour or whether we resist what we are given.

If it is hard to see synchrony as a whole, if daily life is frustration, fog and violence – focus on any one event, relationship or understanding, that has harmony.  Cultivate it like a rose in a garden.  Be creative with it.  The principle invites its own, and gradually expands and links to its own – the osmosis of oasis.  It is like a pattern of fields slowly becoming visible as fog or impediment clears:

“the silvery light that gleams around the clouds 
breath taking, undulates 
a floating, patchwork cloth of fields 
whose margin into faery fades …” 

But we have to keep practicing.  That part of life which is magical or wise – it is not just an island.  Keep giving it attention.  The unfaltering principle is Self created.  If I put my money on connectivity, sooner or later the connections appear for real, and are sustained.  It is a dialogue, Self reflecting:  but left to right, always changing.

1988

This self portrait was done without a mirror, with left and right hand simultaneously;  building the bridge through the brain’s sides, subconscious and self conscious, crossing over.  Here’s looking at you!   The power of my left hand, which falters in life, is where the Teachers are.

Profiles welcome across atlantic;  1987

My heart goes out to all whose homes and lives are devastated in the big East Coast storm, and have to rebuild, recover and be prepared.

At election time:  a wake up call.  It makes the campaigning circus look somewhat irrelevant.  Who looks best able to respond? Who has the gravitas and the troops?  Who is truthful and trust worthy in emergency?  Open question.

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Elephant sky 1998

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BY THE WAY …

The Man in the Ravine” echoes and invoked a certain spine tingling sound – for me – in Liszt’s late piano piece Sunt Lacrimae Rerum.  It is in the Third Annees de Pelerinage.  The music plummets to a fracturing, jarring depth and height: then into the abyss enters a Hungarian lullaby, far away and ancient like an angel, tender as a child – a strangely integrating  alchemy.  My favourite recording of this, if you can find it, is by Zoltan Kocsis; but this Youtube of Nyiregyazi playing it, has an antique curiousity value;  and Liszt’s manuscript is displayed with it.  The link in caps will find it on google, and other interpretations.  Or the weblink, pasted onto your address bar, opens the video:

LISZT’S MANUSCRIPT – “SUNT LACRYMAE RERUM” (NYIREGYHÁZI) – YOUTUBE

www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzuO1B1p2PE

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On the Liszt topic – (see my 11 August post Maestro – Some Views of Liszt) – there is  more material on his and other composers’ work with Rosemary Brown – including recordings and sheet music – on Elene’s interesting blog,  Elene Explores.  (http://elenedom.wordpress.com)

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Dion Fortune and Paul Foster Case

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A word of explanation may be helpful for readers of today’s previous post “Dove”, which mentions Brean Down.  I am a fan of Dion Fortune’s novels, (which she wrote to complement her books on Qabalah) – particularly The Sea Priestess and Moon Magic.

Tarot priestess of the Moon, with pomegranates, 2003

The Sea Priestess‘s setting is the landscape around Brean Down in north Somerset, near the Mendip hills.  Dion Fortune grew up in that region.  I also know it quite well.  In the novel, a temple to Isis is built and consecrated at the end of Brean.  The landscape is telescoped through interior astral vision, with Glastonbury Tor brought much closer to the sea – as indeed it was at one time.   From either of these eminences today, the subtle curve connecting them, can be discerned.

Dion Fortune founded the Society of the Inner Light at Glastonbury in the 1920s and 30s, parallel to Paul Foster Case’s Builders of the Adytum in the States.  Both, in their own ways, set out to regenerate and evolve the rituals and teachings of the Golden Dawn, for the new dispensation.   They made them more practical, with an informed psychology as the under-carriage.  Paul Foster Case was a gifted musician and writer on Rosicrucan and masonic themes.  He received the ground-plan for the Builders through his direct contact with a great Master of the Inner School.

Dion Fortune was a trance medium.  She and her colleagues “brought through” the maggidim (inner plane teachers) of the Society of the Inner Light.   Gareth Knight became an active member of the Society in 1953 after her death, and particularly since 1998.  His biography of her and the School gives a vivid account of this process, and of the way the esoteric community has moved with the times. Much more is accessible to us, than at the beginning of the 20th century, when the work was heavily veiled.   This is due to the global emergency:  an acceleration of the inner process.  Many souls incarnate nowadays, who are already fully trained.  The trend is to simplify, and ground the practice.

Here is my sketch of Glastonbury Tor with the mudras (hand gestures or signs) which the Inner School revealed to Dion Fortune, while she was in trance:

I use these gestures in a fluid motion, when invoking the Tree of Life.  The Tor has a spiral path to its summit, and a small stone tower. The tower is drawn as a vesica, forming a chalice, with an astral “stone circle” around it.   In the tower is a window, whose broken silhouette suggested to me a winged being.

In this sequence of drawings – done during a period when I was learning to perceive and portray the inner plane maggidim – is the following pair:  the first in 1988.  The second is the same, updated, about the Fool, the King of Swords and the Priestess.  I worked with these archetypes for a long time before I really got going on the Tarot.  The Fool is the adventurous seeker.   The King’s psychological reactions …

… defend his terrain, and the well, in which the Priestess rises to the bait.   The globe in which the Fool travels, is in perpendicular dimension to the well, for the Fool has no concern with time:  the King is the guardian of the in-between.  The house is the soul, and the libra-sign over the Cup is equilibrium.   The shorthand was based on a very early Tarot reading, which showed me my path for years to come.   In 2003, I re-drew the scene:

… the King keeps his crown, but has turned into a Rosy Cross;  the grain is sprouting.

Now here is the Great Sphinx …

… as I imagined he may have looked, before the face was shot away.

For sketches of Dion Fortune, see my 15 September post On Power and the Dragon’s Tale.

Finally, here is :

Paul Foster Case, builder of the inner Sanctuary.

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Drawing the Sri Chakra Yantra: some early Notes

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The most visited post in this blog is the one which “began” it – “How to Draw the Sri Chakra Yantra” in early June.   This exercise was foundational to my creative projects down the years.  The wedding of Siva and Sakti through the cosmic lattice – whether subtle or physical – is the groundwork.  It underwrites and ensures a healthy lotus.

I discovered the other day, the following sequence of drawings and diagrams, which may be of some interest.

In 1993, I kept (with my beloved of that time) a log-book.  We were laying foundations for a spiritual dwelling.  So to begin with, the two pages which follow are thoughts of the Sun, from Maitri Upanishad chapter 6:

“(1) – the Self bears himself in two ways, as he who is breath and he who is the Sun.  Therefore, two, as true, are these paths inward outward.  They both turn back in a day and night.  Yonder sun is the outer self;  the inner self is breath.  Hence, the course of the inner self is measured by the course of the outer self. 

“For thus it has been said: 

“Whoever is a Knower, who has freed from evil the overseer of his senses, is pure minded and firmly established in that which is locked away from outward objects, is even so, the Self.  Likewise, the course of the Outer Self is measured by the course of the Inner Self.  Now that golden person who is within the Sun, who looks on this earth from his golden place, is even he who has entered into the lotus of the heart and eats food. 

“(2) – Now, he who has entered the lotus of the heart and eats food …

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The action of the Sun in all directions, inward as outward

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Following this, the Upanishad says:  “There are two ways of contemplation of Brahman:  in sound and in silence.  By sound we go to silence.  The sound of Brahman is OM.  With OM we go to the End: the silence of Brahman.  The End is immortality, union and peace. 

“Even as a spider reaches the liberty of space by means of its own thread, the man of contemplation by means of OM reaches freedom.”

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A cutting for the logbook, with a quote from the Yoga Vasishta

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Here are the early Sri Chakra diagrams from 1993.  The method is from Saundarya-Lahari – The Ocean of Beauty by Sri Shankara-Bhagavatpada, a translation by the Theosophical Publishing House in Madras, 1937.    The method opens the hymn as a whole.  I tried it out, and simplified it just a little, to understand it.

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Note:  alchemical sulphur (fire) is represented also by a triangle atop a cross – see next drawing.   In the “trinity”, sulphur is rajas-guna, salt is tamas-guna, and mercury their balance is sattva-guna.  The alchemical qualities corresponding to eastern gunas are an interplay of elemental humours – dry, damp, ardent, and so forth.   Water mixed with earth is damp:  earth mixed with air is dry.  Each element inclines to fire or to water.  It all embodies prana, breath.   Upon these very basic qualities the universe is woven.

Flame is an upward triangle:  water a downward droplet.  Flame is phallus and water is womb.

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A reference to the same interpenetrative law, in the Tao philosophy:  I Ching Hexagram 11 with Earth over Heaven: Peace.  When Heaven-creative trigram (three Yang lines) stands above  Earth-receptive trigram (three Yin lines), they draw apart – the static “Standstill” hexagram.  But when they are infolded the other way round, the Heavenly power ascends through gravitational Earth – the male through the female – fertility – which is “peace”.

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This archive is by way of an embellishment.  For the method to draw it yourself, see How to Draw the Sri Chakra Yantra 12 June.

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This was used as the logo for the Ramana Foundation UK journal, SELF ENQUIRY.

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More recently, in 2008 I drew this version, as part of an Ananga-Ranga series …

The Sri Chakra Yantra, fountain of eastern wisdom, combines here with the Tree of Kabbalah.  The lovers are seated at Tifareth: Consciousness.   Crucial to spiritual development, world peace and all good intentions, is health and loving-kindness in our sexual nature (whether active or sublimated) and relationships.   We are on and in this earth for the Great Work.  The flasks, retorts and pelicans in alchemical engravings, contain the lovers at every stage of the “cooking”.  Their prana breathes the Divine One in and out.

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SOUL PARTNERSHIP SELF TOUCHING:

Inner and outer Tetrahedrons. A Tetrahedron is a triangle with four sides. The fourth point is a fulcrum – the dimension of volume or understanding, in any relationship.

The points of the interior, inverted Tetrahedron, touch the sides of the exterior Tetrahedron. Extending through the sides to equal size, they form with it, the Platonic Seal of Solomon.

Star of David/Seal of Solomon/Cube of space – 3dimensional tetrahedron structure

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Finally, another newspaper cutting …

… from the logbook in 1993.   “Kate Adie” (celebrated war correspondent) was my bossy persona …  anxious to keep myself updated on the militant-esoterickal scene.

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

A Vision: the Valley and the Olympic Relay

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The ‘Brellas.  Metro cover, 30 August 2012

When looking up something in my last-February’s journal the other day, I came across an entry – which I had forgotten all about.   First there is a dream – an elder landscape, a valley crossing – and then a vision of the Games-to-be:  the context is Time passing through the Mayan calender circle into the Aquarian age circle this year – and pictorially, the years fore and aft, around it:  a Grand Crossing.

from Kabbalah 1991 series – the Kabbalah is by the way, but this is the general shape!

13 February 2012            THE VALLEY AND THE OLYMPIC RELAY

I dreamt last night a great and ancient moorland landscape, very old rocks.   It was a long U-shaped valley with steep sheer sides, glacier carved, exposed.   I walked along one edge of it, a path, noting the formations and striations of heather, rock and strata along the other side:  vast – could be Scotland or Wales, but could be anywhere in the world.

I backtracked some way, and took a path (right-angle) which descended to cross it.  Maybe I slid skillfully, or tobogganed.   In the geological patterns up the other side, woods were hidden, as if in the textures of a painting, and little bushy lanes tarmac’d for cars, but almost too narrow to walk along;  it was local but remote.   Tucked away were houses, cottages and signposts, like the Chilterns; a small urban community took root.

Going up that hillside, as often happens, it turned into an interior labyrinth and I had to ask the workers the way.  But the way was always quite clear to see, particularly when I turned a right angle corridor at the top;  someone showed me a door leading out of doors, and I saw the cliffs of the valley’s other side again (where I was before), and the paths scratched and worn along them:  the VIEW.

The path I was on, scarped the edge, but began to descend.   It was sandy and reddish, and lost height.   I met people and their dogs or children, and I looked for paths ascending back up.

The landscape had an elder brilliance of colour and tone:  I think, an astral region.   The two sides of the valley feel like the pillars of the Tree.   Among the bare rocks, small thoughts of humanity take hold and flourish.   There is an air of rediscovering basics.   I cross the bare valley floor playfully.   There is stability.   There is a conversation, side to the other side.

Parent pentacle – Two sides of the Tree.

This dream-fragment came back to me in the kitchen, by the taps, while putting a jaycloth away.   Yesterday I cleaned, dusted and polished my room at last, and bought a slow-cooker and some steak, veg and ale, and made a wonderful stew with an incredible flavour.

I said Chiltern – an echo – the valley is a dramatic version of the long land-furrows just west of Chesham and their paths and lanes:  a corrugation like the lines in a fingerprint.

In my studies, I read about “the power which hangs the earth upon nothing.   He who knows its presence at the centre of his being, and perfects its unobstructed transmission from that inner centre … knows the practical secret of the Lost Word.”  (Paul Foster Case.)

The hebrew word for Imagination is RVCh, Ruach, the Life-Breath …  …   through the intricate pathways of veins, arteries, nerves and cellular thought streams.   I like to think of those almost invisible fat cottages of village life tucked away among the steep bushy trees and hedges – samskaras and samsaras.  The One Life creates all my ideas.  They are tough like heather.

line dance 1987 – Crossing the valleys of each other

The potencies … are centred in the pituitary body behind the root of the nose.   This is the point through which they enter the field.  They put you in touch with the essential consciousness of everything, everywhere … the most distant star, millions of light years away, all mineral, plant, animal and human forms.

Behind the root of my nose is a visualising centre, which tastes and smells.   Here is a little Tree.   Here are bright white Seals of Solomon.   The valley in my dream is like a bath.   Sit in the bath like Archimedes, home in to the root behind my nose, and check out those distant stars and atoms closer than my breath, the intimate cosmic filaments … and pull out the bathplug with my toe.   Like going to see my teacher to ask a question, the intention feels businesslike.   Some clutter was removed.

The Valley is in a strange, living mode, a Face, a naked being.

What is your name?   Are you called Lebecq? 

I see through you, an ancient channel of light and knowledge, like a well, lain horizontally …  well, that is a telescope, n’est ce pas?   But you are more a landscape than a humanoid.   The idea of a telescope brings the stars close.  Your silence is as alive as when you speak.  You are a channel for God.   The telescope is a channel, a stick, a rod, a staff.   When the valley of the shadow is cleared and open, I walk in it, I cross it, I admire the detail.   There is a point of essence of you.

Hear the nose on your face”.    Listen to the breath.   Waves swell, break and fade.

The god Neptune goes into his elemental salt, the Ocean, from the beach, then deeper and deeper.   He IS the Ocean, being thus She, la mer, the mare, the mother.   Essence is restored to itself … like sperm to egg dissolves back into embryonic femininity, from which the genders grow.

Leibniz, Kepler and Galileo were contemporaries – the invention of the telescope then?   The dawn of the 17th century broke the caul of our world.  It was called the Enlightenment.   It contracted light years and brought in the universe. (Aquarian age).   It invented calculus and measure.   The Rosicrucean Manifesto satyrized the Church’s asinine pomp and tyranny.   The stars broke into the cleric fantasy and toppled it.

Something like this is happening now.   Where there were European wars, is now a perilous Euro-economy – another attention-capturing struggle, another situation beyond the save of linear savants.   Listen to the root of my nose;   the birds out there, and the cars going by.   Listen with everything I am connected to – replacing thoughts.   The mind can scan many things simultaneously, but only concentrate on One Thing.

Alchemical bas-relief in Notre-Dame Paris – Child baton

Neptune’s essence restored to his own element in Pisces – is the year’s basic scroll.

In the summer Olympics, the relay of the torch and relay races in general may be significant.

At this point we are a relay baton – (like a telescope) being handed from one temporal arc or era to another.   Trust the cosmic athlete to accomplish this more smoothly than the human runners and swimmers.   The Olympics is a baton held in hand, a relay.

magus equinox 1991

Yesterday I pondered:  the London administration in England, undertook this responsibility, to relay, to bring all the nations together.   This factor underwrites the extravagance and the security headache.   London – with its alignment to the Grand Cross next summer – is crucially placed for a movement through the hour-glass – trained, record-breaking movement, a national concentration focusing the globe.  It may or may not be a shambles.   It was the British Empire.   It is the Games.   Deep deep down under all the hype, the racket, fear and froth, lurks the Greek archetype ideal, unbroken.   The relay is unbroken.

Elder thoughts are the open valley when the glacier has shrunk to a little brook in its floor.

The relay is a point of exchange, unbroken.   Time is the meeting of the crossing ways, the passing hand to hand.   There is an Olympic flame.  Did Britain begin this present Olympic cycle, was Britain the first host in the 19th century, or thereabouts? If nothing else, the London Olympic project reclaimed and regenerated a waste land.

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7 September 2012 …  and so it has!

 I saw last night the relay of blind runners.   The howling stadium is made to shush so the runners can hear each others’ feet.  The precision with which they hand the baton to each other, is deft in the dark, and … deeply touching.  Velocity:  trusting:  temporal velocity … the trysting trust untried.

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Belgian Beeches

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Yod Heh, Stem & Yantra;  didgeridoo & poplar

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Greetings to our Belgian friends.

In 1999 I visited Mira de Coux in Brussels.  The poem sequence that follows is about the beeches in the forest south of the city.   Something in the soil and minerals there, makes them grow very tall.

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Ceres and John

This poem is about THE CROSSING to Ostend: 

Religion cannot 
understand how God dies. 
It occupies itself alive
locking up the Mystery in a scroll 
of dogma, virgin birth and all. 

Ceres with St John
the second coming, feels 
the new born Child moving through her 
hush!  her finger to her lips. 

What brings 
to a verse I write, the bright 
yellowing fruit of limes last night 
crisply foliaged - my dream?

and crossing the channel to Ostend - 
waves swell, wrinkling 
fleets of galleon clouds like ships 
from horizon unto horizon unbound 

and vessels on the sea's breath 
vanish, white beaten gold 
midst gunmetal shadows, wind driven, 

and engines of the Sea Cat pulsate, 
splashed with salt, 
darkness of approaching rain, 
fleets of sails along the sky ... 

Later those same luscious limes 
recall my dream 
of stars in the Tree - 
for within the altar of Van Eyck 
in Ghent, there gleams 
their magnet to my soul. 

"Let us draw together ..."

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Van Eyck Altarpiece detail:  hermits and limes in the trees

      The Beech Forest

When the brook 
begins to flow, 
a barque of impassioned words 
appears.

First there is no bark, 
there is the naked 
pipe of a silver soaring tree 
unspoken, silence. 

The standing flows 
the tap root of my soul 
upturned.

JHVH:  4our Trees

        The Emerald Table at Chateau La Hulpe

"I speak no fiction, but only 
what s certain and most true." 

They took me to a Rosicrucean garden 
in October sunlight. 
I climbed a high Masonic stair 
of stone steps aslant to a sapphire 
gap of sky.  

The way dipped, then rose 
through treetops 
to a temple at the highest point 
crowned with a Zodiac star ... 

The stoppage of my thought with sky 
is the Grail. 

"What is below is like the above; 
and as above so below 
for the One Miraculous."

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Cosmographic Volume

Like a bird whose feathers 
fall to sky, the Word 
arises still born. 

Like a parboiled partridge 
in pear tree, 
my plumes from quills release 
and it is simple to pluck me bare.  

"The father is the Sun, the mother the Moon. 
The inner child is carried 
in the belly of the wind 
and the Earth is its nurse."

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Hierogamos Sun Moon conjunctio

Along the emerald meadow in La Hulpe, 
slender beech stems 
by sun's silver slant, extend 
nubile nobility of elven land 
to every side of sight, 

and pure strings chime psalms, 
the starry soil of fragrant wood - 

through organ pipes the diptych
of a medieval masterpiece - knights, 
angels, allegories quiver. 

Time
never happened.

"It is the seed of all perfection 
throughout the universe. 
The power of it is realised 
when it is reduced to Earth."

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Wood 

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There is a power in this Low Country soil. 
The trees are aristocrats. 
Denude of blemish or branch, their stems 
ascend, slender fleshy grey 
to the woodland sky like clouds. 
Aeolian strings await archangels' breath.

"Discriminate Earth from Fire
subtle from gross, acting with prudence, 
humility and discernment." 

"Ascend in your heart 
with Earth's wisdom to Heaven; 
then again descend to Earth, and unite 
the powers of Above and Below."

Let all ignorance 
and obscurity fly from you!"

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Master R in London, circa 1745, 1760

By the hollowed root of forest giants, 
deep springs arise.
Though too close to Brussels for bears, 
they bear the mystic fairy tale 
- an illumined art gothique 
whose scented pillars sing underfoot 
old anthems, pungent leafy loam incensed.

.
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     Ebony Goddess

.
"You shall find a greater strength 
than strength itself; 
for it masters any subtlety of thought 
and can penetrate every surface or solid." 

"Thus is formed the lily in the field. 
Hence the glory comes, here standing." 

"And so I am named 
Hermes Thrice Great, 
three parts of this whole wisdom 
here in 
the Sun's action, my Great Work."

.
.
.

**

August 2012

Our footsteps converge along the breaking tide up the sand.

Moving through the Maya-Aquarius relay-exchange of time – time is the baton? – honour the evolutionary revolution.   The old jersey worn so close to the chest is full of moth holes.   Something moves through here – a golden light.  The message of the river is to branch and receive and feed other rivers.  Rivers don’t divide into forks do they?   Rivers receive Tributaries.   Each tributary follows its underwritten destiny through the Ganga, to perfect.   The configuration of the mountain landscape holds geological history, time and places, at a glance.   All is well.

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Window:  The big iron key is from a bunch we bought in Tiru market, in 1993

**

 

The Tree of Life as a formal garden  – an old drawing,1990

**

**

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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

More of the Star and the Seals

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10 August 2012

Rohit asked me this week to put up the Star on the blog, to progress the Tower energies swirling around;  so yesterday I did, and added to it some of the Seal chapter which follows it in my journal.

The Star is perhaps the most benevolent energy in the Tarot.  She is there when the walls of the Tower have blown away with the dust.   She is there, rebuilding and going deep.   She is there, nude and pouring the water of Life from her everlasting Source of nature onto earth and into the pool.   Onto earth a delta of the senses flows:  a tree’s rings of time ripple across the pool.   Lightly her foot rests on the waters.  The waters are the collective subconscious.  She is a yogic asana, and we can be this way, do it for ourselves, and feel what softens, spreads and opens.

The woman of the Star is truth and contemplation.   She heals the Foundation, and ever renews the root and shoot.   When we stand and are quiet, we find ourselves.

Here she is again, with AJJA’s verses below:

The Star

The Hebrew letter PEH belongs with the Tower.  It means “mouth” and “speech”.  The tower speaks:  the voice of God speaks from a burning bush:  I AM.   However, the power of this hieroglyph elides with the fluency of the Star.  Each Tarot Key makes a seamless Tao with its neighbours.

When we stand and are quiet, we find what we are.   We find what THAT is, which troubles us.  It is I.  Is it I?   Simply, I have no form, and yet I am.

The Tower of the Tarot, with its 22 courses of bricks, is a chimney.   The Tower or chimney, let down into the earth like a root, is a well.   How it transforms.

As above, so below.  The Seal of Solomon’s triads, masculine and feminine, likewise ascend and descend through each other in the temple of peace.

She looks down into the well uprising.  The walls are gone, and the earth delivers.   At the heart and source of every troublous thought, is this deliverance.   As Krishnamurti would say:  the sacred.

As Douglas Harding would say:  just look carefully, and go on looking.

We have to make a deal with our conditioned mental tension, to just lay off for a moment, and let

the attention be.

 Image

Many years ago, a bi-polar friend commissioned from me a painting of Gerald Manly Hopkins’ poem: Mind thou hast mountains, cliffs of fall.   It was meant to depict the darkness and the terror of the bi-polar abyss.  I was in the middle of my Hermetic discovery.  I drew:  and at once the strata of the mountainous rock fell through into an inner land, sun bathed, of the All Seeing.  Hermes Trismegistos the guide, receives the falling soul, like a midwife.

Here’s the sequence:

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Awaken 87

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 sketch: Cliffs of Fall 87

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Dance 87

The oil painting which followed it, gave me another surprise.  A chance configuration of the paint, as I brushed in the sky, revealed a seal’s head soaring into the Upper Worlds.   I loved this seal.  Its song is the heart and thread of the Tree of Life through all the worlds;  this was before I studied Kabbalah.  It is a soul connection of the deep.  Unfortunately the painting got stolen from my friend when he was ill, and this blurred photograph is my only record of it.

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The Seal, Cliffs of Fall

So later on, I reconstructed it for myself, for it has a profound message of hope.  The soul falling through the strata of the subconscious in terror and delight, is the seeker.  The cave of the heart opens.  The little goat on the alp (below) is Capricorn, going about our business.  Hermes to the left presides over the journey, and over the landscape of the Underbeing:  the treasure house of souls.   The composition is a Tree of Life, with Hermes at Hod, and the energy of the quest in Fall at Netzach.   Here is a drawing:

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and the small painting to replace the lost one:

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Cliffs of Fall Version 2

The horizontal and vertical planes cross each other, as in every instrumentation of life:  the horizon with the sky.  In astrology, the Capricorn Cancer solstice polarity is a coastal path where land and sea meet:  the Song of Humanity;  the elders and the children:  death and birth.   Pluto, the orbit of transformation, is now (until 2024)  in Capricorn, where he was 240 years ago – the time of Beethoven and Napoleonic wars.   Whatever else goes on, profound human values are rediscovered.   So deeply does Pluto touch our inmost chords of song, that the astronomers have decided he is not a planet.

Pluto is about the size of our Moon.  Pluto is more – Pluto transcends his binary rotation with his moon Charon.   Pluto is the hundreds of fragments and asteroids of the Kuiper  Belt – whose gravitational drift forms a vast clock, or dial, around the sun …   240 years:  around five billion square miles of space;  one NOW.  The Kuiper Belt IS Pluto, collectively.  In astrology, the planets are expressed as qualities through their orbital pulses:  a few months for Mercury, 2 terrestrial years for Mars, 12 for Jupiter, and so on.   The solar system is a Rose of petals of time, cyclic yet never repeating history … a little like Tom’s torch of time.

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Great Rose

**

Here are more impressions now, of the seals and the south westerly coast of Wales.   “The Star” is meditation.  The Seals play in the deep.

**

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rock family

From Journal, 4 October 2002:  Rope, Coast and Ship

Hearth-fire: To have one little fire in the wilderness by myself, is only the triad of awakening;  to join my smoke with the Elder ones is to warm with a greater fire, into which the Triad of the Spirit dips.  And in this greater fiery circle in the wilderness, with wise ones seated around it, prayer and small intentions for humanity are taken and they work, they join, they go beyond me.  It’s funny how there is this passion and yet the great difficulty to be present at the greater fire:  the tedium and the wrestling.  Most of the time during the day, my thoughts are not prayerful at all, but nasty, fearful depressions about so and so’s weapons, and the blaring bulldogs here.  Such imaginations only contribute to the newsprint of fear.

But … the Companions give me rope.  They give me space to explore my coastal path, the creative process and the I-mystery through Ramana.  They let me do it thoroughly, and then come back to them with my way of unification.  Does not this body of work belong to them?  Will they not look after it, and see that it goes with the right tide?

The rope is something earned in another lifetime.  There seems to have been so much labour in that other lifetime, to obtain this leisure and protection for the Spirit, that an anxiety – (am I making the most of the opportunity?) – continues to stress me. 

I begin to hear the gentle advisors, who say “rest”.  Do just what is given. Where my home is, is a tempering place, for all its crack crime and bulldogs, and survives history like the water the wave travels through.  The mite belongs to the Greater.  My work and creation is a fibre woven into Their Rope.

It is a seamanlike rope, like the one near Pwllderi, which hangs from a stanchion down the rock and into the bay a mile south of the Dinosaur headland.   I went down it again, not to swim this time, but to enter a deep dark cave under the cliff, and take photographs.  The rope is in my mind’s eye, thick rope with curly strands and fibres – holding it in my hand as I go down to the wet wild stones, and again when I come up. 

In the same part of that coast, and nearer the Dinosaur, is the ‘secret cove’.  It had seals and their babies in it, this time, so I didn’t go right down.  I only climbed down into it, because my mother dropped her bag with the car keys in it, down the cliff.  The slope is sheer, with tough couch grass, and the bag had come lightly to rest in thornbushes a hundred feet down or so.   I took it, and then traversed across to the secret diagonal path I discovered last time, to sit a little nearer the seals and watch them.  

Eleven years ago, I first entered it, climbing along the shaly sea’s edge.  It is where the igneous rock of Strumble meets beds of sandstone strata: a petrified eruption.

The cove has titanic devic cliffs around it, and waters within of indigo, green and russet.  It is an immaculate vortice, or oasis.  I am profoundly nourished by this mystic place.  It has rock formations of giant couples, children and owls.

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rock titans

Last week I ascended the diagonal path to the clifftop and looked for the spiral stones where I saw the snake last time, but they had gone, and it is overgrown with gorse. 

In my inner sight, it dips suddenly and beautifully down into the pure sea – the well.  The coastal contour flows around it.  It has every level In it:  a turning point in Truth – a landmark.

This time, the Companions gave me the seals to get close to.  Last time I climbed upon some “organ pipes” which gave me a vision of rocklike infinity:  a certainty of the Good.

How should I name this cove, so vivid in my interior, more so than the Tower, and as alchemical?  It glows with the long shadows of sunset.  In its depth are the violet stones from which they built St David’s Cathedral.  I cannot name it.  Keys from the vehicle were dropped into it and rescued.  On the rocky beach below, seals lay vulnerably and suckled their young, and in the soft dark waves their bulls stood guard.  I see above it the graded spiral of rocky stones, and the fluid snake.

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I dip into my interior treasure, along the coastal path trod by sages and Kabbalah.  It is part and parcel of that Great Path.  It is my self-refreshment and discovery of the great Trust fund of Truth.  It is a jewel threaded on the rope.  It never forgets the rope which is the path.  We were given feet and hands to tread sensually such paths.  Krishnamurti said “Truth is a Pathless Land” – which means every path in it is truth.  That was my revelation, glittering that day and in the night, on the organ pipes of igneous rock over the Dinosaur’s flank;  and I have it again.  The sea is in my face. 

The coast is a place of power.   What do they give me now, to see? 

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Return to ships’ crew –  my central Mast between the fore and aft of the pillars, and my Scamp in the crows nest – Daat:  the way he bothers me and my crew when we are all tired, with his horizons which we cannot see, and with his sooth saying ideas which we translate into uneasy psychological shadows, and his general chatter, and his inaccessibleness when it comes to trying to share his wisdoms through personal vulnerability. 

Come down!  Let’s see you!  Leave your nest and shimmy down the mast with its sheets, ropes and stanchions, swing down the ladders, drop onto the roof amidships, and onto the deck of gleaming timbers.  They seem golden, but are actually weathered grey and scrubbed by sea and salt.  Lend a hand!  Take a brush and some pitch, let’s see how you work with us.

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rock flow

The glory of the image …. crows nest, night-dark ravens and the black choughs with red beaks and legs, the glory of their command of the airs, ravens’ wing.  The raven phase of alchemy, and also the silvery and druidic grey of my Kingdom of Daat:  the music sings wherever I look.  But that is Daat download chattering – Pluto in the Tree;  and seals sing like owls.  Come down, scallywag sailor with your see-it-all, and lend your hand to the wood. 

Emotion is the deep living current of the green-violet sea.  Feelings are the surface break of waves which are then subsumed.  There is something very quiet and still and restful in the open breast of emotion, Kabbalistically.  It is unendingly here in this moment, intensely Daat, focused and free of drama. 

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My meetings with seals were analogous to the meetings and overlappings of the Four Worlds, and of inner and outer planes.  We poke our heads through membranes of the waters and look upon each other.  We receive each other, unheaded.

The sense is of a circle turned.  This last eleven years is a place of meeting.  Last time I couldn’t see the seals, this time I could.  It needs time and some hindsight, and the flow of the river away, to see what I am now seeing.

October 2002

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Old Men of the Sea

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

The Sacred India Tarot Creation of Card 17 – The Star: USHAS, the DAWN

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Rohit’s ref

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Rohit’s Notes

“We are again in pioneering territory here;  insofar as I know, India has never depicted Ushas, Goddess of the Dawn.  Considering her tremendous stature in the Vedas, this is one of the most astonishing oversights in Indian culture.

“She is the Morning Star, not a typical star as the tarot packs have it, but her close association with the Sun, as well as the fact that stars are Suns, and thus solar phenomena, made me decide on her.  The great power, healing and goodness associated with Ushas is typical of the Star Arcanum.

“We have various female figures which may suggest a starting point in drawing her.  What is clear is that she is extremely beautiful, and somewhat translucent in complexion.  The sun who follows her, shines through her;  and it is the light shining through her blood which makes the dawn pink or red.

“Depicting her as a sort of female sun riding in a chariot and watering the heavens, earth and the waters of the earth, with Light poured from jars like water, would satisfy both the traditional tarot requirements, as well as keep to the integrity of what Ushas is.”

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sketch

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Builders of the Adytum

Jane’s Notes:  9 August 2012

In the traditional Star, the wisdom shines down into the nude woman, who is earth, illumining her chakras on their stem, which are interior stars.  She gazes into the pool, which is a little sea.  She sees beyond her reflected face.   The sea is the subconscious.  Meditation is a fish-hook let down into the depths of water as it becomes still.    As I become still and look …

The scarlet ibis in the tree is Thoth, the scribe of the Egyptian gods.

The violent awakening of the Tower falls away like a chrysalis, to reveal the maid, like a butterfly.  At the tail of every dragon she stands, waiting to be rescued;  while the princes gallop gallantly up and down.

We call The Star “Meditation” and also “Hope”, for under its auspices, the totality of an event is revealed, and comes to peace.

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The Star – from Jane’s Hermetic Tarot

Meditation through all our sensory organs, receives sensory essence:  the Tattvas, whether known or not.  For this reason I will include in my process journal, some impressions from my sea-side holiday – found over the page, immediately after I drew the SITA card.   Seals are archetypes of the soul;  they rise curiously to the bait we let down into the deep, and play among the waves.

But firstly:

Jane’s Notes on the Star:   “Meditation, Countenance” – 23 September 2002

The Higher Self cuddles the upset child in its arms and makes her laugh.  When I read about the interfacing Upper and Lower Countenances of the Tree of Life, there was a movement of delight and love for the Tree, which is no different from a devotee’s for their Guru.  The Tree has faces of incomparable beauty, simplicity and splendour, and I receive them humanly.  My Teacher has this geometric warmth of expression. 

I checked a rush of “Feeling” with the deeper “Emotion” which is quieter.  This sobriety is the operation of Tifareth – the heart, beauty, consciousness in the Tree.  I monitor the precision of stepping through the etheric envelope into the sky-lark space of the astral.  Astral are imprints and architectures of deep emotion.  If these are pure, uncluttered by the surge of Feeling, it is TAV, it is good – a refined and aerial texture.   Monitor how the morning’s sludge awakens, when it sees and receives the Countenance.  The passion itself transforms and refines – surrenders – itself to the Unifying Face, and then feels less, because it is subtle:  a distilled tenderness of being.  It is open.  Because it is not separate, the desire to describe or outline it, dies.

Analysis of the opening process, is watching – the intimate detachment into Tifareth – the way a musician hears, to touch and phrase a note.  The raga is tuned minutely to the sway of the sruti.   Where is this movement on the Tree?

The shift from the personal to the Self.   In my case, through the tidal embrace of lunar Cancer into solar Capricorn – a divine stability.  The mountain goat has a fish-tail rudder.  It is a miracle and a wonder.

Distracting thought-trains become visualized in the space, as generators, rather like complex car batteries, generations.   Stepping back from them just sufficiently to perceive these objects, “re-generates” the psyche, hermetically.  Yes!  and SELF-ENQUIRY.

I noticed a vitalized affection for W my tutor.  Since looking at my chart with his, I receive him differently as a Companion of the Light.  Last night he rang up twice, enthusiastically, to tell me about the Kings of England on the box (I was already watching it) and then to see what I thought about it.  The two goats after all these years, are sufficiently well acquainted to stop together and enjoy the same patch of violet tufted thistles.  As it happened, on the programme (about the bloodthirsty Edward I) there was a lovely picture of thistles – the Violet Ray – as well as beautiful photography of the crash and passage of the sea, rocks and Western Isles.   In the flux of our animal nature, the brute history never changes.

Ka is the soul;  the ballast is Capricorn;  ka abba allah combines the mystic roots.  This friendship taking root like an oak, will grow and LAST.  W said, “you are one of the oaks.   You are an old grandma.”   It is funny to be becoming an elder, but feeling unchanged from child, or in my twenties.   When I look in the mirror, that is what I see;  but photos give me a shock!    How can I live in peace with my awful profile?

Well, come on now.  Countenances.  The Tree of Life is a Countenance which embraces and awakens me, in which I am content.  The holy place of meeting happens… the contact with the seven interior stars.   (These in the Tarot Star card, are the chakras.  The science is precise.) 

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Chakras on the Tree of Life

Gurus – dispellers of darkness – present human faces.  In the Western Mysteries, the faces are less focused.  What is behind them?  I’m still reading the Anandamayi book, but getting a bit bored.  Vamadeva Shastri’s article on Agni is pure sushumna Fountain.  I visited his website, (www.vedanet.com) and read a bit of the awe inspiring great work and lineage, he publishes and transmits.

I only last week bought a TV, when W urged me to.  Last night, after watching Edward I and a fascinating documentary about survival in Alaska, I watched some of the video of Neelam in London with RMF, with much interest, as it is full of people I know (including my awful profile.)  The night before, I watched a Poonjaji video and the faces of his lovers – to see the phenomenon if possible, uncritically.   I only criticize erstwhile targets of my own involvement, which reflect on my lower self-person, which is always changing and never true.   The Poonja phenomenon is an obsession with “Awakening” – a love-play through eye contact, body gestures, vocal sounds and silence.   They are doing it through the soul, and by generating astral currents.  But they never say that is what they are doing, and the seekers are shy and awe struck.  It has its quintessential eternity, like a flower in bud and bloom before the petals rust and drop.  Neelam and her stage are compelling to watch, because she is PURE DRAMA from moment to moment.  She has sometimes an extraordinary naked beauty, and at other times a heavy-grained old Dame looks out from there – a disturbingly voyeuristic screen.   Perhaps she will become a fat formidable Polish grandma, still teaching in the States.

Countenances.  In the Hermetic way, everything is by analogy.  The subtle contact with W only reflects, connects and earths what is in the Upper Worlds.

Yesterday I drew Card 17 – The Star – for India Tarot, but was tired, so it is not yet as clear and fresh as I would like.  Countenances.  A lot less Hokhmah (Revelation/Wisdom) is coming down, these days.  I think they are monitoring it more, with me, as the alignment deepens and becomes peaceful. 

I have a rope.  It guides me up the mountain paths to meet them.  In the Cloud of Unknowing (Daat), I hold one end of the polarity – they are my Antipodes.

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The Spiritual Seeker

Countenance.  I have not forgotten, with the repetition of this word, L.Eagle (through DG’s transmission) telling me I shall be bestowed with the gift of the DIVINE COUNTENANCE, having rendered his own;  so this nice word is the flavour of the week.  It frames things well.   It is also seeing the Sea – off to Pembrokeshire coast tomorrow, to watch the seals.

Countenance?  I love you.

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The Star – Ushas the Dawn

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HYMN TO USHAS

1. Heaven born by truth, the Dawn has shone out.  Revealing her majesty, she has come.  She has concealed the unwelcome, hateful darkness.  As the foremost of the flaming Seers, she has set the paths in motion.

2. Be awakened today, for our great and happy journey oh Dawn;  into a great auspiciousness extend us.  Goddess human in mortals, hold in us a wonderful splendour and glorious revelation.

3. The wonderfully clear, immortal radiances of the Dawn, have come for the vision.  Generating the Divine laws, filing the interior realms, they have spread afar.

4. When she is yoked from the beyond, she travels around the five races of men in an instant.  Surveying the ways of knowledge of men, she is the daughter of Heaven, the queen of the world.

5.  Full of power, the maiden of the Sun possessing a wonderful beneficence, she is the ruler of plenitude of splendours. Lauded by the seers, giving maturity, the beneficent Dawn shines, sung by the carrier flames.

6. Wonderfully bright radiant horses appear, conveying the flashing Dawn.  She travels luminous by her chariot of the universal form, as she grants the ecstasy to harmonious mortals.

7. The truth with the truth, great with the great, the Goddess with the Gods, holy with all the holy ones, she broke down the firm limitations and dispensed the radiant mornings, as her rays roared to greet her.

8. Now hold for us an ecstasy made of nourishing rays and heroic force, oh Dawn, the all enjoyment made of swift energy.  May our mere humanity not stain this altar.  Protect us with the powers of well-being forever, oh Gods.

Rig Veda VII.75:  Seer – Maitravaruni Vasishta.  Translated by Vamadeva Shastri (D.Frawley)

 

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Vedic goddess

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Jane’s Notes:

The solar horse is in fact a Unicorn, whose third eye is projected or introjected as a gleaming horn or ray of light from the Star.

The Unicorn is a fabulous faery creature, a vehicle of purity for the inner journey, a subtle creature of the borderlands, particularly at dusk and dawn.

In this card, the rising Sun (beginning to melt the stars) forms a fiery Wheel, depicting the Buddha suit of Pentacles.  The blushing Ushas pours into it her everlasting inner being.  Her hair is the night.

**

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Seal Notes

2 October 2002 INTERLUDE:   WITH THE SEALS

I liked going along with my mother, and looking after her.  Our great passion was with the seals, it is the season for their lying on pebbly beaches in the sun, with their suckling young in chasms beyond human reach.

The bulls guard them in the deeper water, their noses pointing out.  Sometimes they play in circles, or fight, and powerfully submerge.  Watching their floating, upright stance (Yetzirah) I took yogic lessons from this for my walking, for letting the rocky path flow me.  Let the deep, dark waters of silk lift you up the cliffs and rocks.  When I swam off the deep rocks, I floated and sculled the way they do.  The first of these swims was near a bull seal.  The mutual nervousness of the animal kingdom:  he is big and powerful in this element where I am fragile.  He guards his baby and its mother in the cave beyond, and he might be angry or anxious.  Every time the Wise Old Man of the Sea popped up his great head, whiskers and snorting nostrils, I scurried back to the barnacles, scared he might surge up and bite my bum.   At the same time, to see him and his missus so clearly – she came out too, grey and shining – was an enormous thrill.  I kept saying Hello and smiling to them, and telling them I like swimming too.

As seals are highly intelligent, I am sure my enthusiasm communicates, as well as my ambiguously unwelcome humanity.   When we climbed  back up the cliff – my mother at 78 is still at home on this terrain – the big bull watched us out of sight, with interest.  Down to that swimming-place flow steep slopes of sea-grass and then the good, golden rock, wherever you see.

A seal in his great sea, enjoying the sun on his head, observes a fascinating colour, inaccessible movement, and solidity of crusty land … those who climb about in it, where he cannot go.   We barely pass into one anothers’ surfaces.   He and his dams flip and flounder with heroic effort over shingle, sand and rocks.  We, nursing our knees over footholds and thorny bushes and loving the sun, observe his ancient kindred in the deeps of the cold sea which we cannot see, and dare not travel into.   In the old myths, seals steal human souls down to the deep to become mermaids.

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Mother’s sketch 1

During long periods of a sleepless night, I lay “sealing” into the great wide sea;  letting my unworded, uninformed perception spread, and receive, the language I do not know.  I wonder about seals, that elusive shape of the waters between rippled crescents.  Where do they come from?  How did they begin?  How did they separate from the waters to become these fat, shiny, mottled, melodious beings?  Who is “I’” of the seal, and how did it ever detach from the sound of the waters, and how did it ever come to be?

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Mother’s sketch 2

At night we heard their cries, and the cries of their young, echoing up from hundreds of feet below the Youth-Hostel at Pwlderi, bewildering the blood with the cold tide of the dark.  I lie in my bed, and the little defenseless babies shrimp spreadeagled on the shingle, their fur still white.  Their mothers cannot always find them;  nor are their mothers always maternal.

Everything, on such a dramatic coast, is sealy – the lions-paw rocky cliffs, the silky grass, the caves, the movement of the water, the sun on your head.   Latent memory – my last visit in 1991 – opened out and became heathery ground and deep, clear caves of indigo and golden warmth.

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Coastal path at Pwlderi, near Strumble Head

The magic cannot be photographed.  The magic imprints and empowers the formless movement of the soul, framelessly.  The high, wild places and their vivid colour – the family life of the seals in the deep places, and their owl-like faery hooting, is beyond enclosure.

As well as seals, we watched ravens and choughs sea-eagling among the cliffs with velvet black pinions, and flocks of gleaming dive-bomb gannets out to sea.  The gannets are the coastal albatross.  We watched buzzards and gulls glide aero-dynamically into the teeth of the wind, we watched the seabirds stay absolutely still in the big waves of the airs.

The sea most of the time was a mirror calm.  It is deep, clean and clear, tincturing indigo with turquoise, and with the flickering shades of golden, russet and violet stones.   We saw herds of wild ponies at St David’s Head, and two big stabled billy-goats at the Youth hostel, one of them had a devilish expression.  Awakened in me, was wild-life watching, and I caught sight quickly in the right place and time.  When we got back to my mother’s house to recover, I read a book about otters in Scotland.

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… I love walking in the dark, by the sea.  My night-senses awaken – the vision of things unseen:  an awareness in my feet imparts its rhythm like a cat, for stones and things.  The relaxed attention and soft alertness is most agreeable.  The path gleams by starlight, and in the path are other small, gleaming things which are not glow worms, but which like water, cannot be picked up in my fingers.  There are devic beings at night.  Though I cannot see, I feel their presence, and they surely know my love, and let me walk this way with them.   We look down into an abyss or pit of sighing dark water, where the cliff falls away.

I read Dion Fortune’s Initiation-Training book.  Persons in the work are Initiates or they are Hearth-fires.  In the western tradition, physical strength and quite a dense physical frame are characteristic.  This comes into view on the coastal path, the place of power where sea meets cliff, where elements flow into each other and marry, where climbing and swimming embrace.

In the east, where the climate is quite different, yogis and sages have and seek an ideal of disembodiedness … transparency.   In the west we have to be ANCHORS.   I wonder if I shall ever be received formally into an initiation.  So much of what I read about it, I already am.   Anchor.  Ankh – the staff of Life.

On our way home on Sunday, we drove over the Preselli Hills – the quarry for Stonehenge.  I was disappointed that we missed the turning to Carn Enoch and my ecliptic portal of standing-stones near it – (two of them are gate posts into a field.)  But we did walk up over the wild, sweet nude Preselli contour, away from the road.  It is dotted with little pyramidal points of rock among the sheep.  We saw from this windy space, where ancient Egypt and Stonehenge slumber – a clear view to Carn Enoch and to the tumulus hill behind distant Pwllderi.

My mother drove us home to Somerset with the perennial childlike stamina of the Adams/Edes, and was glad to reach her house with the thrill of the Pwllderi coast inside her.

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In London, there was a Kabbalah Meditation – what kind of ship are you?  The ship is feminine, and so is the sea – the fluidic command of her keel in the watery element through storms.  It is not rigid.  It is not controlling.  It moves with.  Ponder the words:  Free. Will – the wheel.  Ship’s hull is feminine and filled with men, and yet a good captain is totally receptive and responsive, and can feel where the storms are, and instruct the navigator.

While doing Kabbalah notes all day, I listened with deep feeling, to Franciscus Liszt’s three Annees de Pelerinage, and loved this beloved Master and his profound humanity.  Mrs B and I had such fun yesterday over the bull seal and me all pink and white on the barnacles – “Franciscus has got a rival!” said she, shocked indeed – that Liszt’s music has come thundering back into my heart, not to be outclassed by a mere whiskery amphibian.

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Correspondence:  Gautam and Rohit – 24 September 2002

“We love the card, with the little touches of the solar horse.  Do you feel you need to improve on colours?  For Ganga and Star, for all goddess figures, we suggest covering the nipple with a band like in Lakshmi, or jewellery like Saraswathi, in order not to offend Indian sensibilities.  For example, Ganga could have her tresses covering her nipple as well.  For the Star, you might perhaps need the band.

“The revised Kali, though perhaps less archetypally powerful, is remarkably serene, as is the Ganga.  Where the first Kali was turbulent, this one is calming.  It’s almost like the Kali looks like the Madonna.  We are very happy with how this is moving ahead.”

 

Correspondence: Jane – 24 September 2002

“I am so glad the last three cards are successful.  Yes I could emphasize the allure of one or two of the devil’s daughters.  As to Ganga’s and the Star’s nipples, these will be treated in the way you suggest – I had forgotten the rules.  Also I was reading a text on Ushas (the Star) in the Vedic Hymns (David Frawley translation) which says she is ‘bare breasted’.”

“I had a wonderful holiday with my mother, thank you, on the Welsh coast in perfect weather, rock climbing and swimming near seals.  It was total soul nourishment.  We arrived back to our houses very exhausted, but refreshed.  I read your vedic astrology project with great interest.  I think it is well presented, and I am sure it will be successful.  Let me know your impressions of David Frawley’s website http://www.vedanet.com …   

“As I’m not sure if this address is working well at present, can you send me a note back to confirm?  Haven’t had any messages from anyone for over a week, but then I haven’t written any!   Regards, Jane”

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Rohit (see http://aryayogi.wordpress.com)

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

Jane

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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.

Tom’s Torch of Time – an Olympic Relay alchemy

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Children of the World 2007 – a drawing done for the Human Rights Aid Foundation

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Here is the Olympic Flame during the Games.  204 children, one child accompanying each nation’s team, carried a bronze petal towards the  creation of the complete torch flame.   The petals when lit, lay as a great mandala over the ground.  As national diversities emerged into unity –  like stamens of a flower – the mandala rose to form the Olympic torch.

Here is the flame from within it, looking up.

My earlier post, Reflections on the Grand Cross (22nd June) touched on the Cardinal Crossroads (17 July) of Pluto in Capricorn, Moon in Cancer, Mars in Libra, Uranus in Aries:  tensions and responses through the antipodeal frame of solstice and equinox.  Many astrologers and seers speak of a profound tipping point;  the relay-release of the old Mayan Great Circle, or frame of time, into the “new” Aquarian Great Circle.  They see violent interactions, and all kind of things.

Our projection onto 2012, when boiled down to essentials, may amount to the handing over of the Torch of Time, through time and space: through the dream.

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Four seasons electron figure-eight

Intense pressure is suffered in a myriad different ways, collectively and individually, as human conscience passes the midpoint of a cosmic “8” – the figure of infinity;  itself a crossing-point of the unbroken Circle.   The dawn of “something new” has no adequate prediction.   The dawn of “something new” is through the neck of the hourglass.  It reflects the old, yet differently.   A young gangster kid may be inspired to break through into athletic training and fellowship – a local quantum leap.  These things happen.

Few of us have the “dancer’s training” to bend and yield and flow with it.   Yet truth is found when we look within ourselves, rather than outward onto the shifting persuasion.  This inner truth is sometimes surprising.  It is like having a view from above, rather than from inside the street’s canyon – to see all the streets, all the connections, the city and its fields.

And … for instance … a TV camera inside a helicopter records a hand-over of the Olympic torch down there in a London street …  or a village …  or a coastal path or remote, rainy field.  The place is lined with flags and inaudible cheering;  a small white clad figure approaches another in the rain;  there is a pause while the flame is stabilized, then off goes the new white clad figure, her arms uplift with joy, her hair down her back;  she seems to float, she is heavy and yet she flies.  She runs like an early Picasso Grecian dancer;  and the ancient happiness punches up into the sky.

I was moved, by something deep and archetypal.  Till then I was “an Olympic sceptic” – I saw chiefly, an extravagance far beyond the British purse, its one heritage being the “greening” of an industrial desert – a reclamation of toxic soils.

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Torch bearer (1955)

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Every carrier of the flame was stirred, carried into an unexpected dimension, and so were the watchers, along its 8,000 miles.  (Or was it 80,000 …?)

Astrologers view the Grand Cross and London’s exact alignment with it, with traditional pessimism.   Yet I also perceived the coming of all the nations together in an estwhile centre of the Common Wealth:  Greenwich meridian 0.  There is a civil vulnerability;  Isn’t there also the potential for a progressive release;  a different gesture?   Alignment with whatever the stress, converts it to an asset, and flows.   It is an art of life.  The forces which move us are so much deeper than we know.

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Leda & Swan (1957)

The euphoria of the Olympic award in July 2005, was swiftly followed by the bombings.  The wake gathered in Trafalgar Square to say “we shall not be defeated, and nor shall we hate.”  In all our minds is that vigilance with the shadow which accompanies the light.   Yet in the passing of anniversaries, the replay of patterns, history “reverberates” beyond our fears.   In the bigger picture of the cycles, there is so little that we actually see.  What we think we see is feudally enclosed by our conditioning.

All we can be sure of, is that we cross again these points, but with a turn of the spiral, rather than a closed circuit.  Thus is Nature and the growth of trees.   The spiral is tight with our history and apprehension;  yet still it is the Great Spring – a planetary kundalini Yantra.   Watch the world, and turn inward;  see “the point of intersection, time with timeless:  an occupation for the saint.”

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Draw a Yantra

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A Kabbalistic meditation this week:  the PRESENT.  The present.   A Present, like a gift – here in this room with its pictures and things, in this block of flats, the noise of cars and trains going by each side, in this neighbourhood … within the event of the Olympic Games in London.  Mostly, this Present is the busy, tiny, teeming moment’s turmoil.   Sometimes this Present is an entire aeon, or aeon of aeons … the Buddha’s breath … NOW.   Into NOW, the tiny things melt for a moment.

What different clocks!   And we can go anywhere.  We can go to before the big bang, behind where all this began …  nothing.   No thing.   Silence.   Space.   Conscious.   The focus of an emanation which is Light – a point – expands.   Let there be Light, and all that becomes.  The tsim tsum is this beginning of the whirlings, gilgalem, the polarized pulse of atomic gravities, so tiny, which turns – the great wheel of the Milky Way – in one of its spiraling arms voyages our little Solar System.   The Vedic gods I realize, with their many arms, are GALAXIES!

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Cosmic egg and wood grain

Then a trip through history, geologic and human, evolving through NOW, always now, to the re-absorbed aeons of ions into the point:  no thing.   Kalpa, the Great Breath.  And open your eyes into this room.   Thou art God.   TAT TWAM ASI.  AHIH ASHER AHIH.   And make the tea!

Time is multi-directional, and also inward.   Time is a petalling flower – each petal is a local clock, and they grow and fall away, and new ones come;   each petal is an electron circuit, a planetary orbit around the stamens of the Sun.

This brings me to Tom’s Torch … and its hundreds of bronze petals.

Thomas Heatherwick, the architect of the Olympic cauldron, is the grandson of Elisabeth Tomalin, who died aged 99, this year.  Elisabeth carried in her tiny, intense, twig-like frame, a century’s history:

http://www.thecnj.com/review/2009/102909/feature102909_01.html

Herself a Jewish refugee from world war 1, Dresden and the Holocaust, she met Jung in Switzerland and made her home in England when she was young.  She worked as a fabric designer for Marks & Spencer, then trained as an art therapist, and returned to Germany in the 1960s, where she pioneered her work among students whose parents had been Nazis, to heal their soul.  She released their creativity through dream interpretation, using water and sand.  In one of her visions, she inherited the link in an unbroken tradition of doctors, whose root was in Israel – this was a comfort to her.   Her story is extraordinary, as the above link shows.   Here is one of her last embroideries which she gave me.  Her hands could not control a brush, but could still sew.   Embroidery, for Elisabeth, was a tapestry of the soul, the colours of lifetimes, in and out:  the flowering landscape of the inner thread.

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Figure of Eight, by Elisabeth Tomalin

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Elisabeth’s burning quest for connectivity, and the wholeness of the soul, made her a difficult companion, to herself and to all her friends.  In her daughter Stefany, her grandchildren, and great-grandchildren, that powerful river of the lineage survives and flows.  Her grandson’s imagination is prolific, since childhood.   He is the architect of the Seed Cathedral in the Shanghai Expo, and of holistic buildings patterned on the flow of wood and water, in Britain and all over the world.   He and she were close.

Tom Heatherwicks Seed Cathedral

The Great Work of Alchemy is stealthy, and many of its hands do not know what they do.  Time’s great petals are brought to form a mandala, each is dipped to combine an Olympic flame.   Young persons and athletes without celebrity, brought Tom’s bronze petal-buds each to each.  It is beautiful to remember how the flame traveled around the land, from the Giants Causeway to Trafalgar … villages, lanes and towns, by horse, by boat, by wheelchair, by abseil and by bike.  It atavistically moved people, one didn’t know why, culminating in the great, converging relay.  It is ancient, as the beacons on hills, the messengers along ley lines who carry fire in nests:  the elder earth energy.   It woke something.   Until I saw it, I had no idea what all the fuss was about.

Tom’s Torch – the Miracle

The mandala of the petals of the flame lay on the ground and glowed.  Then every stamen was raised up, like a carousel on stalks, till the One Torch merged, flowed and burned for the world:   Tom’s torch of Time.

The horizontal yantra rose into the vertical stem.

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Torch bearer (1954)

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A Summer Grand Crossroads brings many, many nations together in a world city, to compete, befriend and celebrate;  to pass through each other, and begin to transcend the little cult of the individual – through stretching individual capacity beyond the barriers.  There are problems, furies and triumphs.  We are villagers.

The weatherman on TV last night, announced with relish:  “The weather is improving.  This weekend, for the closing Ceremony, we may look forward to a Bright Gold Medal in the sky!”

Crossroads are places of meeting.  In their centre may be planted a tree, a seat, a garden, a gossip, a conflict, or even a sacred space.

What is my Crossroads?   What is your Crossroads?

How does the river flow and feel?

Even if we in the British economy, suffer “an Olympic Hangover”, this too, shall pass, and is part of our character. Likewise, we chuckle at Danny Boyle’s opening Ceremony, a radical departure from the tradition of the host country to boast about itself.

It is important to recall the  surprise of the revealed Symbol, signifying yet something other, always.

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Sunflower

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Relay – Centaur, Athene and Child (1987)

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Solomon’s Seal:  Flower of Life

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The fire of our Sun creates the light of the world.  The seed creates the form within the Mother Consciousness.  Here, the children return the Flame to its source.

In the seed and the flame is the essence of our humanity. They light the Tree of Life.

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Snowdrop:  In touch, across the Seas (1988)

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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 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) – along with many other creations in house.  

I write, illustrate, design and print my books.   Watch this space.