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The 91 Parts of the Earth, Section 3

Tapamal, Part 34 of 91, 1st of LOE. Zodiacal King: Zurchol Ministers: 2658 Mundane association: Onigap (deduced by Turner to be Yucatan and Central Mexico, on the basis of Kelly's descriptions.)

Tuesday, November 28, 1995 4:57 PM

Considering the Part last night, I sensed that I would have difficulty getting into it; probably because its nature is at odds with those Parts from ICH. This one is dark and wild by comparison. This invocation is a warm-up, to get me used to the energies and focused into their ways.

Invoked according to the usual procedure.

There is some confusion; I get images that relate to widely separated parts of the world. One of these is Kali as the Dark Mother, wearing a necklace of skulls, dancing on the bodies of the dead.

Then the image changes and I see a man; he might be an Indian from Central America, or he might be Polynesian of the breed who settled Rapa Nui and set up the god-statues in their own image. The man is wearing a necklace of long feathers, brightly colored like the plumage of parrots or birds of paradise. Beads of turquoise and gold separate the feathers and keep them rayed across his chest. He has some sort of hat on, or it might be a crown, made of stiff leather; it forms an upright ring around his head. It has squarish, stylized glyphs or pictures embossed upon it. He wears a skirt of red, heavy cloth, mid-thigh length.

He holds a war-club in his left hand, and an obsidian knife with a gold handle in his right. He stands in the middle of a field of corpses, and his legs are stained with blood up to the knees, as are his arms to the elbows. If this is Yucatan, the man must be either Maya or Toltec; I don't know enough to tell the difference.

This man is a panther, or his name is “Panther”, or his power is that of a panther – like a totem animal; perhaps all three of these. He killed all those around him, and none dared to resist him. There is a terrible freedom in his eyes, and an even more terrible sense of separation from other men; he sees no limits on his actions, none at all. His spirit laps up the life-force of the dying and becomes exalted from it. He sees himself as a great cat stalking the land, taking whoever he meets for his prey, forcing the lesser beings to build a den suited to his stature and then to answer to his will. In his own mind, he is a power beyond all other powers; even the gods are within his control.

I don't want to see any more at the moment.

I know without it being spoken that this Part relates to the path of Capricorn, which connects Binah with Tiphereth in Achad's Tree. This is the “Devil” aspect of the path, in its worst form, in which the individualized self tries to take on the unlimited, undifferentiated quality of Binah while retaining its “selfness”.

Friday, December 01, 1995 4:35 PM

Invoked Tapamal according to the usual procedure.

A great deal of resistance to entering this Part. I do not know what it is, but there is an intimation of great danger; somewhere, something is gibbering in fear, and this is leaking over into me.

A quick flash shows the sigil of the Part overlaid on Central America. It roughly follows the west coast of Yucatan, with the final line cutting across to the Pacific at the ithsmus west of there in Mexico. Guatemala is also contained within the power of the Part.

I am in complete darkness now; an oppressive darkness, as if shielded from even the dim light of the night-sky by some canopy above. The air is extremely humid, and carries smells and tastes of decay. Still the fear is present, somehow preventing me from entering any further – or rather, from seeing what is surely all around me. The fear narrows perceptions. I tell myself that it is not my own fear that I am feeling, and immediately there is a sense of opening up, as the space around me expands into a whole world.

A pair of yellow cats-eyes open and peer at me from ten or twelve feet away. It is a jaguar, as black as its surroundings. Only the eyes and a faint sheen on its fur distinguish it.

Now I am in the jaguar, looking out from its eyes. The surroundings are not dark from this viewpoint; I am in a jungle, looking at a very small hole in it created by a fallen tree, too small to even be called a clearing. A capybara or some similar large rodent huddles underneath the tree, tense and ready to flee at any moment.

I can feel the jaguar's mouth watering. It gets ready to charge and pounce on the rodent. But the rodent senses something and quickly jumps away into the undergrowth. The jaguar paces forward and sniffs at the spot where it had been. It looks both ways along the tree-trunk, then turns to the right and moves silently towards the exposed rootball of the tree.

Coming around the roots, it looks at their underside. It sees several small rodents hidden among the roots. It bats at the roots with one paw, and manages to hook one of them out on its claws. It grabs it with its mouth, crunches it once, and swallows. The other rodents squeak and cower deeper in the roots. The jaguar takes and eats another, and then walks away, looking for bigger game.

The voice says: “To the small and weak, death is a great hunter; one who cannot be overcome nor propitiated. One may only hope that it takes another and leaves one alone for another day.

“It is the fear of the hunted that you felt on entering this Part, o man who is a mage; its terror mirrors the terror of men when they confront the 'Abyss' [I could hear the quotes] unprepared. Binah is the huntress and the darkness that conceals it; her absence of qualities is sheer terror to those whose self demands that existence be qualified. What choice does such a one have, in the face of Her, save to freeze or to flee?

“One can step forward into the jaws of death, but for many that is no choice; the seeming extinction of self is an unacceptable solution. One may flee, but once the hunter has the scent, there is no true escape; the emptiness pursues, and one lives one's time in fear of negation. One may freeze, ceasing movement and change, but that too is a death; the nature of life is change, and if one fights change, then one is soon exhausted, and dies despite one's efforts.

I get images here of a stepped pyramid with a small temple at the summit. Priests stand before an altar in front of the temple, and a human sacrifice is tied on the altar, his chest forced upwards so that the breastbone is exposed to the knife. And the sense is that this is identical with the “Devil” card of the Tarot, with its man and woman chained to the altar.

“The priests fear the negation of Binah, which they perceive as a great hungry emptiness, not as the glorious fullness that it is. And they sacrifice others to propitiate that emptiness, never thinking of sacrificing themselves. And in doing so, they become that very emptiness that they fear so greatly; it seeps into them and permeates them, eating away at them until they are only shells. Neither the soul nor the greater life is left to them; they are hollow and dead; there is no immortal part left in them.

“And in the end, the sacrifice becomes their own survival, for a time. They no longer seek to placate a hungry god, but to suck up the life of those killed to counteract the emptiness that eats away at them. But even this does not avail them; pieces of themselves continue to slough away like the body of a leper, until nothing cohesive is left, and they are gone forever.

“Now there is no point in continuing; you understand all too well, and rightly do not wish to. Come again to the next Part in order, and continue on. We are done.”

I ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

My being is not suited to dealing with this Part. I had my experiences of ultimate Fear very early in my magickal career. Since then it has not played a very great role in my development; Pain (a different Martial aspect) replaced it for most purposes. One should not place too much confidence in either my perception of the Part or my comments thereon.

Capricorn and its Tarot card have many possible interpretations, most of them of a positive nature. The sign is the sign of initiation, of the effort and discipline necessary to achieve a goal, and the high place that one comes to through that effort. But the sign's ruler, Saturn, is not only the planet of structure and discipline, but also of endings and terminations. Mars, exalted therein, is not only the Work and Will of the magician, but also the planet of violence and fear. The negative, degenerate qualities of the sign and planets predominate in this Part.

The man seen in Tuesday's vision is an historical personage. One of the early Mayan kings, the one who created most of their empire, was named “Jaguar” or “Red Jaguar”, something of the sort. If I remember correctly, the custom of the times was that nobility captured in battle were sacrificed by the winning king to the gods of his kingdom, and apparently went to their deaths willingly. Death-oriented religions and cultures – as the Mayans, Aztecs and some Kali-cults – are one part of the path's nature.

The perceptual state of this king is another example of the grandiose form of schizophrenia mentioned in connection with an earlier Part. Here it is depicted as the result of a downflow of Binah-force, in its form-destroying aspect, combined with the self-exaltation typical of the Solar consciousness.

Friday's vision depicts these two forces in a more common form, in which the superior Binah-force does not combine with the Solar, but instead overshadows it. The result is the fear, terror, and sense of imminent destruction of the traditional “Abyss” experience as described by Crowley.

The Binah-force enters the person along a dimension that he cannot perceive and in which he is incapable of acting. He is effectively helpless before it, and has no real escape. Hence its depiction as the invisible Huntress. Several possible reactions to this situation are shown.

The best, but least desirable from a Self-interested viewpoint, is to actively submit oneself to the death-experience. “Freezing” and “fleeing” are the two instinctual variations of the flight-or-fight syndrome; neither is successful in doing more than delaying the inevitable. If one has gone far enough on the path that one has contacted the Binah energies, it is already too late to avoid their effect; the conscious self is the last part of the being to perceive the contact, so it is already well-established. “Freezing”, that is, resisting the changes it makes, is also futile; the finite cannot overcome the infinite, only make the effects more painful.

The remaining response is one that leads to the creation of a Black Brother. The being seeks to separate itself from the transfinite by objectifying it, creating a finite image between himself and it. Crowley called this image Choronzon, the “demon of the Abyss”; for others it might be Satan, Chthulhu, Set, Huitzilopochtli, or some other such image. The being then attempts to propitiate this demon – and delay his own demise – by feeding other people as substitutes.

Note that if we were going up the Tree instead of from the top down, this Part, with its emphasis on Fear, would come before the Parts from ICH, all of which relate to the ultimate finite synthesis called “love”. Even though it is still a finite Ideal, one cannot experience it in its purest form so long as one retains the conception of oneself as a completely distinct, separate entity. This experience of the death of self seems a necessary precursor.

Gedoons, Part 35 of 91. 2nd of LOE. Zodiacal King: Cadaamp. Ministers: 7772 Mundane association: India Major (Southeast Asia and India east of the Ganges.)

Monday, December 04, 1995 9:30 PM

For a while I could see nothing except vibrating lines of many colors filling my visual field; these were like the visual effects that sometimes come when peaking on LSD. They were accompanied by a sense of fragmentation also similar to that of an acid peak.

Then I was looking down on southeast Asia from the direction of India. The sigil was overlaid thereon. The sigil started at about the location of Haiphong in Vietnam, curled around the southern end of the region and northwards, ending just east of the easternmost mouth of the Ganges. The Malaysian peninsula was not included.

Now comes the image of a man, down on his knees and with his head bent close to the ground. He is wearing a coolie outfit or one of those pajama-like suits the Viet Cong used to wear. But he does not seem to have Asiatic features; I cannot place him in any ethnic group.

It is hard to tell what he is doing. He seems to be sorting out tiny grains of something from the dirt; he is picking up individual grains of rice and eating them. Bugs also, and anything else that comes in front of his eyes. He does not look up at all.

The image widens. I can see a truck parked a short way away. It is piled high with sacks of rice; one of these has a leak – this is the source of the grains the man seeks. It seems he could just stand up, walk over to the truck, and take much more rice than he is finding on his knees. Why doesn't he do so? Is he even aware that the truck is there?

He sits up straight for a moment, and knee-walks a few feet down the road – away from the truck. Then he bends over again and goes back to his picking.

The voice speaks:

“One can become so accustomed to one's routines of survival that one does not see riches even when they are nearby, and free for the taking. One can become so accustomed to hunger that a full stomach is not even imaginable, nor can the means by which it can be gained. That which is reliable, though it yields scant gain, is taken over the chances [it may have said “changes” instead] that would bring more.

“So too in the spiritual quest, one can get so used to one's routines of “development” that one continues them even when they no longer produce good results. When the culture is steeped in routines and ritual to begin with, then the purpose of practices may be forgotten entirely, and the practices be assumed to be the end in themselves. ”

I get side-images of monks in a monastery, going through their daily rituals of work, worship, and meditation. Everything is timed exactly; just so much time for work, so much in the temple, so much in one's cell. Then doing it all over again. Other images of the prayer-wheels that Tibetans like so much, equally stylized, equally useless when the purpose is forgotten.

“The intent of ritual activity – we do not mean the ceremonials of magick – are to free the mind from concern with the daily round of living. To free the mind from the need to make decisions, to make efforts, that would distract from the pursuit of the goal of enlightenment. But what use, if the rituals are themselves so time-consuming that no time is left for the mind to be free to roam?

“Inspiration, the descent of the spirit, does not come when the mind is occupied, but when it is without occupation; open, relaxed, attentive but not seeking.”

The voice stops abruptly. The sense of the speaker's presence is no longer there. Nor does any further image appear. The power of the Part can still be sensed, however.

I wait for a while, simply focused and ready, not seeking more. Then for a few moments, the shimmering lines and the disorientation of the opening return. Then they pass again. The voice continues, now seeming to come from a distance:

“One can free the mind without such ritualistic activity; it is a matter of careful judgment, of examination of the details of life, and the elimination of all those that are not essential. Then do the rest as the moment demands, and take no thought for it beyond the moment of its accomplishment. Nor be seeking forward in thought to the next task – it shall come in its own time, and be done when its time comes, not before. Such is the way of the Taoist sages.

“Let time become naught; let the days cycle by as they will, and care not whether it be spring or fall, summer or winter. Care not for the passage of the years; make them invisible to your sight and thought. Do what is before you when it is before you, and leave it when it is done. Out of this comes a natural ordering of life, superior to any ritual ordering.

“And when the concerns of life are so reduced to their essentials, then Time opens up in which the spirit can come in, and the being is prepared for it to be received. The myriad tiny moments that separated tasks before now join together into larger moments, even days, when nothing need be done except attend to the spirit. Tasks adjust themselves naturally, when they have room to do so.

“Now come you to the next of the Parts; this one is done as well as needs be. Comment, and go on. We are done.”

I thank the voice, and end the vision.

Seer's comments:

Gedoons is the first of the Parts to be governed by Cadaamp, the Zodiacal King of Virgo in the system used for this work. The vision seems to be a general treatment of the sign. The characteristics of Virgo are attention to detail, and a love of routinized activity. This detail-consciousness often comes at the expense of the wider view; routinization at the expense of opportunities. The opening image of the man gleaning rice-grains expresses this.

In Frater Achad's “reformed” Tree of Life, the path of Virgo connects Hod, the sphere of the intellect, with Geburah, the sphere of directed activity. It is also one of the three vertical paths connecting the lowest triad of the Tree with the middle triad. As such, it represents one of the means used to move from the mundane-oriented region of the Tree into the spiritually- and magickally-oriented region.

The intellect, the part of the mind that deals with words and converts experience into word-groups, is extremely sensitive to events. Everything we see, everything that happens in our life, produces an immediate spate of activity in the intellect, which often continues long after the event itself is passed. We create descriptions of the event, play with inner dialogs of how we should have reacted to it for best effect, decide on contingency plans for future occurrences of similar events, and so on. Anticipated events (and purely imaginary events) produce equally furious activity, even though the events almost never occur in the way we anticipate.

The intent of the monkish lifestyle is to reduce this activity of the intellect by taking away the opportunity and need for it. “Silencing the inner dialog”, as Casteneda puts it, is the first step towards becoming aware of the spiritual world. When the person eschews possessions, there is no need for concern with acquiring or keeping them. When the person abandons status and recognition, family and society, social affairs become much simpler. When basic survival is assured through a minimum of communal work, or through begging, then many mundane fears fall by the wayside. The intellect loses most of its usual sources of stimulation. Those remaining minimum activities are then converted into a routine, so that even they do not stimulate the inner dialog very much.

But it is easy for certain personality types to make such routine into ritual, and make the ritual an end in itself, focusing on it instead of becoming unconscious of it. Without a constant re-direction of the attention away from the routine and towards the inner world, it becomes empty activity.

The “Taoist” view extolled by the voice of the Part is a higher form of this principle, in which even routine is abandoned. The activities of life and mind become a direct reflection of the innate cycles of activity of the spiritual self. The consciousness dwells in the present, and as those energies of which it is an expression vary over time, so does the focus of its attention. Everything is done as the present moment dictates, with neither anticipation of possible futures, nor mulling over of past events. Achieving this does not constitute “enlightenment”, though one might get that impression from certain famous texts. Rather, it is the perfection of the relationship between action and thought on the one hand, and the individual will, the “atmic impulse” on other.

Ambriol, Part 36 of 91. 3rd of LOE. Zodiacal King: Ziracah. Ministers: 3391 Mundane association: Orcheny (Islands in the marshes of the lower Tigris and Euphrates.) Note: James shows a different, discontinuous sigil for this Part.

Thursday, December 07, 1995 1:44 PM

While practicing the visualization of the sigil prior to the invocation, I heard an astral voice cry: “The Elixer! The wonderful Elixer!” in tones of awe. I was momentarily filled with a feeling of wonder, then it faded again.

Invoked Ambriol according to the usual procedure.

The center of the circle opened, and below me I could see Australia. The sigil of the Part was overlaid on it. The start of the sigil was around Darwin. It followed the coast east to the opening of the big gulf, then jogged southwest into the desert. The parallelogramatic section of the sigil enclosed most of the Northern Territories and northern Queensland, roughly contiguous with the watershed that drains into the gulf.

Now an image of The Star is overlaid on the land and sky. My viewpoint revolves around so that I am looking at the region from above the gulf. The water-carrier has one foot on the gulf, the other on the land south of it; she pours out water from her left-hand jug upon the mountains and hills to the south, and it drains down through the watershed to the gulf. She pours water from her other jug over the sea, and it forms a typhoon, which stirs up the waters of the gulf and flings them upwards.

Above her head a bright star appears. It is not Polaris (as in previous visions) but Achernar, shining with blue-white intensity. And it seems there is another water-carrier among the stars above, and she pours down her water upon this star, from whence it flows and meanders northwards until it reaches the celestial equator near the Hunter's feet. There it enters a lake surrounding the Hunter's foot; Rigel spins redly and its heat vaporizes the water, which disappears into the background of the sky.

Now the image of the earthly water-carrier and her surroundings begins to waver, as if seen through disturbed water; soon only the waves of the disturbance are visible. Simultaneously, the river in the sky becomes more regular in shape, a series of up-and-down strokes. The waves above and the waves below combine and form into the glyph of Aquarius.

The voice speaks: “As above, so below. They are one; there is no separation between them, save in the falsely discriminating minds of men. Why should the sky not affect the Earth? And wherefore should not the Earth equally affect the sky? They have run together since the beginnings of Time, and all within their horizon is but a single realm, unbroken, an un-hatched egg.”

(I get an impression here that the waves of the Aquarius sigil somehow represent the “solve et coagula” formula in action. Each downward point of a wave is a condensation of substance; each upward point is a dissolution of substance into a vaporous state. Just so, the water condenses and falls on the land; it flows to the sea and is again evaporated. Just so, the clouds of gas in space condense into stars; these concentrate until their heat is too great; then they explode their substance into vapor again.

(And each of the Earthly water-carrier's jugs is one end of a process that contains several repetitions of the formula; an additional polarity overlaid on the basic process. So also the celestial river, running from Achernar to Rigel, is a process containing multiple repetitions of the formula. What this overlaid process might be, I do not yet know.)

The voice speaks again, answering my thought: “What else could it be, o man, but the distillation of the wonderful Elixer, the essence of all things? And it is all one process, above and below. So the waters of the world carry with them the essences of the lands they pass through; these are carried upwards in the evaporation to become one with the Aires. Some condenses again with the rain, but other parts are carried higher. And in the highest Aires are they boiled off of this world by the power of the Sun, to become part of the great seas of space.

“So too in the worlds of men; they reincarnate ever, each time become more themselves, more their own essence. At any point in time, some return again to the Earth; others achieve a high enough place that they are released from the bindings of this world into the greater universe. And what happens then, is not for us to say; but the process continues ever onwards.”

“Now think of what we have said before: the release of a man from this world is the true beginning of his life, a life of freedom from all save self-defined limits. There is nowhere barred to those who leave, nowhere they might not pass. Those who travel the star-ways take from this world their own distillation of its essence, and carry it with them wherever they might pass. Thus is the Earth rejoined with that realm from which she blocked her attention in a long-ago time. With each such passing a tendril of her substance is carried along; these bind to what they pass, and the links are re-made that once were broken.

“And in these links will the higher process, that which takes place among the stars, eventually be brought down to Earth again. The false division will be healed, the separation in the minds of men destroyed forever. The illusion that Here is not There [i.e., that the Earth is not part of the Heavens] shall be overcome, and men once more pass freely from realm to realm, even those who have not yet earned their passage into the greater life.

“Now go, and come again another day, and you will see more, more clearly. We are done.”

I ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

Achernar is the first star of the constellation Eridanus, the River. It's name comes from an Arabic phrase meaning “end of the River”. Whether it was supposed to be the headwaters or the mouth is debatable; here it is the former. Rigel in Orion lies very close to the other end of Eridanus. It is actually a blue-white supergiant, not a red star as described here. But the visible star is part of a four-star system composed of two binaries; the complex orbits of these four might be likened to a cosmic equivalent of the typhoon produced by the Earthly water-carrier.

The Achernar end of the River is close to the Phoenix. The other end is at Orion. Orion lost his sight and then regained it thanks to the rays of the Sun; the Phoenix dies and is reborn. It seems to me that both might be an expression of the principle being shown here.

Others of the voices have said that the “star-roads” are endless, the travels upon them never reach a final goal. Therefore this distillation process must also be endless; the Elixer is never completed, but always in process.

Sunday, December 10, 1995 12:50 PM

Invoked Ambriol according to the usual procedure.

The night sky appears above the circle, and then it seems that I am standing in the flood-plain of that region described in the previous vision, hills to the south and east, desert to the west, the great gulf to the north. And in the sky, the sigil of the Part becomes one with Eridanus, though they are nothing alike in shape; somehow there is an identity between them.

And now I am in that sky-river, gliding down it in a marvelous boat. The boat seems to be made of jewels or stars itself, bound together with some kind of magick force. It seems the essence of Night, that boat, and it passes through places and times where no others could pass. It adapts, changing its shape and nature as it moves, conforming to the qualities of the spaces around it.

In the bow of the boat stands the eldest Set, in his form from before his demonification. He is also like Night, and carries a myriad of stars within him. He bears a long thin staff in his right hand, and in his left is a sphere that is like an eye, and somehow also like a grail. He also seems to change his nature as the boat moves along; his aura is never the same from one moment to the next. Yet on some other level there is continuity; adaptation and change are his nature.

There is something very confusing here; at one moment it seems that the spaces change as we pass through them, and at another that this god is changing the spaces. Or perhaps he is creating them?

The voice speaks:

“There is a subtle dance of powers going on here, o mage; as there is for all those who travel the star-roads. It is not like the Earth, where the changes man takes upon him in incarnation are forced, to a great extent, by the existing state of the world. Rather, here in the spaces of freedom the world changes as the being who moves in it changes. Each new potential manifested by a being instantly becomes one with the existing state of the universe, becomes embodied in it with those qualities already established. And the manifestation of those qualities in space reflects back upon the traveler, causing additional changes and adaptations in his nature.

“Thus there is a continual unfolding of both universe and the being who travels; each takes on marvelous new qualities, creates things previously unknown. And thus each road is a river; not a fixed thing of earth, but a fluid, adaptable, ever-changing flow. There are no guides here; how can there be when each step and motion creates newness? There is no hierarchy here, no rulership of one power by a greater power; how can there be, when the attempt to rule changes the conditions as much as any other action? Only voluntary cooperation among beings – that is, Love under Will – allows them to be fellow-travelers for a time, joining their creative powers in a dance of endless surprises.

“Take you the bow position in this boat of years, for a time, and see what happens.”

I move to the front of the boat, and in that motion become the god who stands there. I look forward. After a time the boat passes into a distinct space, a sphere within which certain qualities seem to maintain themselves over time.

In that space, passing by on the left of the boat, I see my Temple of the Tablets. And below the boat, in the relative terms of this space, I see a network of cubes, the faces of each one connected to their nearest neighbors by lines of light. These cubes are each a set of Tablets, like unto those of the Enochian magick, but not identical. This network extends down and away in every direction, seemingly endless.

Then I see another Temple forward and on the left; this one is of Fire. (The first was of Air.) And looking far away to starboard, I see two more, in the other two elements. Together they form a great square above the sea of cubes; and as I move towards the midpoint between them all, another, greater Temple forms within those bounds. It towers over the others and seems to include them.

I reach the midpoint, and pass through the central beam of power in that greater temple. It fills me and seems to expand me for a moment. The boat seems caught in an eddy, whirling around within the beam three or four times before passing out of it again, and going on.

The boat quickly passes out of that space and moves on. After a time, another thing comes closer out of the surrounding space; this one is the Comselha pattern I devised for the powers of the Tablets. It is like Oz in the old movie, high, pointed towers, but in the middle of a circular plate. As I move closer the space around me splits into three interrelated parts. In one, the basic circular pattern is to be seen, my original design. In another, “above” the first in some way, it is the city that grew out of that design. And in the third, above and larger than either of those, it seems an entire nation of powers has formed upon that circular plan, each square of the original design become a huge territory.

The boat passes out of this as well, and back into the undifferentiated spaces again.

And the voice says: “Though the change is inevitable within the star-roads, yet one can see landmarks there, creations that have gained a permanence of sorts in comparison with their surroundings. These serve as reference points and points of rendezvous for those who travel the roads. The ones that you see are of course your own, which have gained such permanence; there are many others, a few of which you have seen in your visions.

“One can travel from landmark to landmark, having confidence of arrival. Yet the paths between are always different, always changing. And even these landmarks change slowly, as those who arrive lend some of their own power and experience to the permanent spaces.

“But there is joy in striking out into the unknown, as well you know. One still encounters such landmarks, but one never knows when or where they will appear. And the blessing of surprise is added to the joy of going and arriving.”

While this was said, we passed by other things. One like an upside-down ankh, the hole of which appeared as a tunnel passing through spaces ordered in endless vertically-oriented layers or planes. Another was a bow whose string vibrated in complex wave-forms. Another was a cube whose inside was larger than its outside. And others, too far away to see clearly.

The boat gave a sudden rocking motion, and it was back in the stream of Eridanus, moving through the sky towards Orion. All those other landmarks had vanished.

Looking down, it appeared that the “water” of this stream was compose of souls, all being rushed along by some unseen force. They did not appear disturbed or helpless; rather there was a sense of partying, of travel for its own sake; they appeared content with their circumstances. The overall flow of souls was fairly constant, but one could distinguish groups within the flow, marked by some common quality. The flow carried them onwards, faster than the boat was moving.

“Those who make the roads by their travels are not the only ones who can travel them. Given the right circumstances, any being may do so, but only in a passive way. These others must follow the streams and currents previously laid down; what they see along their way is not of their creation, but the developing and elaborating result of a true Traveler's work. And in doing so they too have a freedom of sorts; they are not free of their own natures, but they are free of any given world. Our Earth is a temporary exception, soon to be relieved of that restriction.

“These too are part of the wonderful Elixer being distilled from the worlds; never forget that. Their nature contributes as much to its quality at any time as do those whose work is on higher levels, and is by their own will.”

“Now we have said enough. Comment as you will, and go on to the next of the Parts. We believe you will find it intriguing. We are done.”

I ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

This vision returns to some very old themes of my work. And from my own viewpoint, doesn't really reveal much that is new about them. Much is promised, very little is delivered.

As described here, the “star-roads” seem not much different from the traditional view of the “astral plane”, which changes according to one's will, and according to the unconscious impulses one projects upon it. Other visions have in fact depicted them as a sort of super-astral, a plane which is the Yesod of a Tree in which our entire Tree of Life constitutes Malkuth. This meta-Yesod is supposedly the residence of those beings who incarnate as planets, and many others of equal scope. A vast society of such beings has been hinted at. Beyond that, there is nothing more to say at this time.

The night-boat of Set seems to be a complement to the boat of Ra.

Gecaond, Part 37 of 91, 1st of ZIM. Zodiacal king: Lavavoth (Sag.). Ministers: 8111 Mundane association: Achaia (southern Greece)

Saturday, December 16, 1995 8:31 PM

As I practiced visualizing the sigil, I got an image of it overlaid on Greece. It began at the Bay of Amvrakikos on the west side of the mainland, went south between the Ionian Isles and the mainland, east through the Gulf of Corinth, further east around Athens, then north and back west through the Gulf of Evvoia (sp?). The Peleponesos was not included.

Parnassus and Delphi were situated almost exactly in the center of the sigil. It seemed to me that a thin line of light was sticking upwards out of the mountain, and another was sticking down into the Delphic temple. And these two lines were somehow acting like the cables of an elevator – they remind me of the space elevator in Clarke's novel, though the lines are nothing more than short segments.

There was also an impression that there was a hole in the Earth at the location of Delphi, with a short conical upper section, leading to a narrow, cylindrical main section below. There seemed no bottom to the hole.

I could get nothing more in this vision.

Seer's comments:

The energy of this project seems to be running out, as it did last year at about this time. Perhaps this is a good place to stop for now. If the past two years are any indication, the energy will come back some time after the summer solstice.

Laparin, Part 38 of 91, 2nd of ZIM. Zodiacal king: Olpaged. Ministers: 3360. Mundane association: Armenia (modern Armenia and Azerbaijan)

Thursday, October 24, 1996 3:09 PM

The center of the circle opened, and I fell into the air above the Caucasus Mountains. The sigil of the Part was overlaid on the landscape: the cross-arms were contiguous with the valley and basin on the south side of the mountains, their intersection with the upright at about the location of Tblisi. The lower arm extended southward until it was near the latitude of Lake Van’s north shore; then it jogged east, enclosing a somewhat smaller lake in the angle.

The image faded and I began to hear the sound of heavy industrial machinery: the rumble of big electric motors, the clang of a power forge, the various rattles of chains and power trains.

An image of great gears faded in; many of them, so tightly fitted together that I could not see between them. They practically formed a wall across the space I was in. I saw the sigil of the Part as a casement release within the gearing, alternately catching and releasing to let the gears move forward in discrete steps. Elsewhere I saw it again as a steel ram above a conveyor; metal slugs would pass below it and it would smash them into disks. Each disk had the image of the sigil stamped on it, surrounded by a decorative wreath of ivy and what appeared to be morning glories.

The sounds resolved into two or three clear rhythms, which intertwined smoothly and became the beat of a song. Voices joined the beat, singing a plain workman's song. I could not hear the words; they seemed to be in Russian. But the sense of them was:

“Work is the great elevator of Men. Those who work tirelessly receive the praise of God, and their place in heaven is assured. Those who work erratically get the rewards of their incontinence, hovering ever between heaven and hell. And those who do not work fall into the darkest places and are forgotten.”

And a chorus:

“Sing we of Work

“Great, glorious Work,

“Whose doing makes us divine

“And lifts our hearts above the world.”

It seemed to go on, listing the particular virtues of different types of work in separate stanzas. And behind the image and sounds was an intuited sense that this was a celebration of Maleness, not as the power to dominate, or the power to destroy, or the power to sire, but rather as the power to shape and make.

The sounds and image faded again, and the voice of the Part said:

“The hand is the instrument of the divine; and in shaping the stuff of the world do men reach closest to their Father in heaven. For by the hand and the mind is the Earth brought into conformity to the Will of God; by the hand and the mind is Nature made into Art. [An image here of the City of God, implying natural substance made to be a reflection of the divine.] Women may grow, but it is Man who makes.

“Now in the world of men, shaping must be balanced against the needs of living. For the divine requires not the world to maintain its being; therefore in its creations the dross, the waste discarded in the shaping, is unimportant. The divine cares not where it falls. And when men take on the divine power of shaping, it happens that such disregard often comes upon them.

“But in the world must men and women live among the dross of the shaping; if it poisons their world, then they are poisoned. If it sickens their world, then are they also sickened by it. At the least, it makes a part of the world ugly, and the wonder and beauty of the shaping is lessened thereby. Therefor is the best shaping that which leaves no dross, or which transforms the dross into something beneficial as soon as it is removed from that which is being shaped. And therefor must the shaping be balanced by the sense of life that is the woman’s part, to maintain the wholeness and health of the world.”

At this point, I decided to stop for the day.

Monday, October 28, 1996 8:55 PM

As the vision opened, I heard the sound of a carnival organ, tootling a merry tune. Then the image of a turning disk appeared, looking somewhat like a chakra; there was a small, circular portion in the center, while most of the disk was divided into sectors radiating from that center.

The viewpoint shifted and I saw that it was not a disk, but rather the roof of a carrousel. Beneath the roof, colorfully decorated horses (all of them stallions) moved up and down on their poles as the machine turned. The strongest impression I got from this image was that the movement of the carrousel was a powered movement, not an inertial movement. Energy had to be fed into the system to keep it going.

Now the lighting of the scene took on a definite directionality, with the light source behind and above my right shoulder. The front half of the carrousel was brightly lit while the back half was in darkness, with a definite dividing line between the two areas.

Next each horse began to leave a trail behind it as it moved, so that its path was traced by a line of light. It became apparent that each horse reached the lowest point of its vertical motion at the point of the circle farthest from the light, and its highest point closest to the light. And as each horse moved into the light it gleamed with extra brightness just for a moment.

Everything but the circular trail of light began to fade from view. As it did so, the globe of the world faded in to replace it, with the trail wrapped around its equator. On the face of the world, where night became day, I could see millions of men suddenly moving about, beginning their work for the day. Collectively their activities became more energetic as the world turned towards noon, then suddenly stopped as the energy of the sun reached its peak. There was a moment of suspension, everything held in a state of dynamic tension rather than of stillness. Then their activity began where it left off, but gradually reducing in energy as they moved towards evening. New men were constantly coming to work behind them, so that at any moment the entire visible face of the globe was filled with activity of varying intensities.

Now a voice said: “The perfection of energy is in Work, the application of force to bring creative change under intent. Destructive change is an abasement; for it wastes the energy and scatters it to the four directions, never to be recovered.

“The light of the Sun is the source of all power on this world; either the Sun that shines now, or the Sun from which were formed the elements from which the world was made. [I.e., in the case of radioactive elements that can be used for power.] And the life of the world builds with this energy, renewing and regenerating at each moment; so that as life is killed and eaten, yet more life springs up. And in the end those that eat are also eaten, giving power to other life in their turn. But in the meantime they each act in the creation according to their own natures.

“In the spring of the year, and in the dawn of the day, is the energy at its purest. The energy grasped then can be put to any purpose; it is not yet conditioned by the activities of the day. And so also in magick; that which is done in the early dawn, the sun just appeared, has the greatest power for effect.

“Now, in the course of these visions have we given you knowledge of the Mother and the Woman, as she appears in these Parts. And again the balance shifts: now it is the Father and the Man whose nature comes to the fore. This Part is the moment of balance, as that earlier Part was also, and of the complementary sign [of the zodiac].

“Go you to your place tonight, and pray to the great god of this work, that he might assist you in seeing, and in the continuance of this work as you desire. And invoke this Part again, before going on.

“This is all we have to show, for this night. Amen, and God be with you.”

I thanked the powers of the Part for coming, and ended the vision.

(The power of the Part remained with me for sometime after, though there was no tendency to visions.)

Seer's comment:

The geographic region shown for the Part is somewhat larger than implied by its Ptolemaic association, including the Republic of Georgia and southern Ciscaucasia as well as well as Armenia and Azerbaijan. The area is noted for heavy industry and metals production, fitting with the theme of the Part. The vertical line of the sigil follows an ancient military road; the horizontal bar follows an equally ancient trade route between the Black and Caspian Seas.

The Zodiacal King ruling the Part is associated with Leo in the system used for these visions, but the Part is clearly an expression of Aries. The sign's ruler, Mars, governs work; its exalted planet is the Sun, implying that the exaltation or perfection of the Self comes through Work. In Achad's Tree, the sign connects the two sephiroth ruled by these planets. Aries is traditionally the sign of the bursting-forth of life in the spring, the sudden leap into activity of the energy stored through the winter months. And in one interpretation of Achad's Tree, it represents the fresh, untapped energy of the start of the day. Both of these are exhibited in the visions. In this latter interpretation, the path is balanced by the path of Pisces, representing the final fading of the light into midnight; perhaps this Part could be seen as awakening to a new day after the confused dreams of the previous Part.

The energy of the Part also had a continuing stimulating effect that persisted for the next month. I had been thinking for some time about writing an Enochian magick FAQ, and rather suddenly found myself immersed in researching and composing it, expending more energy on it than I normally would have. At the same time, a discussion in the Thelema email list lead to the start of the Enochian mailing list, and I became equally involved there. These two “new beginnings” and the work involved are definitely linked with the invocation of this Part.

Wednesday, December 04, 1996 12:36 PM

Invoked Laparin following the usual procedure.

As I vibrated the name of the Part, I felt an energy enter into me from the top of my head; it descended to the level of the heart, or just below, pushing out everything else in its way. It descended further, to my feet; I felt as if it was holding me a little ways off the ground. The force was bright and energetic, and gave a sense of uprightness.

I heard the tramp of marching feet. From the southwest a company of soldiers carrying spears marched in a square formation towards the northeast. Their front rank reached the limits of my view in that direction and halted. Now soldiers peeled off from both sides of the formation and marched out at right angles to their previous line of march. Those left behind were in a long triangle like a spearhead. The marchers went a short distance outwards and then turned again, so that the two groups were aimed to intersect a ways behind the spearhead, and in line with it.

The two groups of marchers came together and interpenetrated. They performed some complex evolution, so that all of them were now headed outwards in a circle from their point of intersection; except for a single column which headed back towards the spearpoint formation. Suddenly a voice shouted orders and they halted; all of them turned towards the northeast and became still. I realized that their formation was the glyph of Mars; but since I was looking south, I was seeing it upside down.

Now I heard music begin to play; a marching band, playing a pomp-and-circumstance style tune, slow and stately. From above there descended a golden ring, possibly a plain crown, large enough to enclose the entire formation of soldiers. In the center of the ring a small yellow sun shone brightly. As the ring passed my eye level, I saw that standing on the sun was an image of Jesus or some other prophet, dark-haired and bearded, wearing a simple white robe. He stood in the sign of Set, right hand raised, left hand pointed downwards. But I sensed that the right hand was raised in blessing, and the left hand was open in invitation to those below.

A force emanating from the ring seemed to draw up the beings below; they rose in the air while staying in the Mars formation, until the glyph was positioned vertically with its spear-tip pointing directly at the sun in the ring. The soldiers were drawn up into the sun, being replaced in their positions by those behind, so that the formation disappeared from the bottom up. As each passed through the sun, their armor changed into mason's leather aprons, and their spears changed into hammers and chisels, and other stoneworking tools.

They spread outwards in rings from the center, and began to work. Soon the entire Air was divided by a stone floor at the level of the ring's bottom. This floor was covered with diamond-shaped marble tiles, black, gray, and white with golden veins. These spiraled inwards, becoming smaller as they approached the center. I counted nine spiral curves, three in each color.

The workers turned towards the prophet, sank to their knees, and bowed to him. Their aprons turned into monk's robes, save that the robes were colored in the various spectral colors. They all rose again, and ran inwards. But before they reached the center, each was lifted up into the air and thrown outwards a great distance, so that they landed in a circle almost at the limits of vision, segregated according to the colors of their robes.

Now the music began again; this time, a waltz. In the distance, each group gathered into circles and began moving about a center. As they did so, columns of light in their robes' colors began to form around them and extend upwards, solidifying so that the entire visible space was surrounded by pillars. The blue sky above became a canopy or dome supported by the pillars; through the spaces between the pillars I could see the starry blackness of the night sky.

A voice said:

“What is man, o lord, that thou art mindful of him?

“Each one, saith the Lord, is a tiny fragment of my Will, given form and substance so that it might continue on through the ages alone and independent. And yet, my Will in each speaks to my Will in all the others; therefore do they seek to act in concord, to make a greater will than any of them holds alone.

“Can any of them, even together, know what my Will is in itself? It is not so; therefor is their union futile, and of a destructive nature, even when they seek to build. Those that hear each other most loudly do band together, and seek to suppress those whom they cannot hear so well; their will becomes a caricature of mine, a grotesque mask over the beauty of my creation.

“And so I have sent my Son to guide them. Not with words, nor with beliefs, nor with the rules of social order; for these are all of the world, and so are not of me. They change as the seasons change, as tides they come and go, leaving random marks upon the world. Rather he shall guide them with spirit, lifting them up unto himself that they might know my touch directly; and thereafter they have no need of him, but each acts according to the will within him, stimulated and clarified by my touch, the dross of earth concealing it gradually removed and discarded. And as each so acts, so is a portion of my Will made real; and stands in place even when the actor is gone on, until others come to add their portions to the whole. And in time is the whole given form.

“Sixteen times, in as many forms, have I sent my Son unto man. And unto the sixty-four types of Man has he sent my spirit through his Name, that each might become one with the Seven, and thence know the Three, from whence I am but a short step away. And thereafter? As we have said: into freedom, forever.

“And why have I done all this? You know, o man who is a mage; as you know me, and love me. Speak it not in this place; for its holiness is beyond compare, and is not for those who know me not.

“Now end this seeing of the world you have invoked.”

I thanked the spirits of the Part for their response, and sent my heart briefly to the God of this magick. And so ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

The images of this vision depict the Will as it manifest among the uninitiated, among those who have contact with God via the H.G.A. or the Savior, and among the enlightened.

Among the uninitiated Will manifests as devotion to a cause, leading to regimentation and limitation, and the forceful imposition of the perceived will upon others. Among initiates, it manifests as the perfection of the individual nature and the coordination of its action with that of higher powers. Among the enlightened it becomes pure creativity, as stated in previous visions, which are recalled by the stars beyond the canopy.

Since Aries is the Lamb of God, it is not too surprising to find the symbolism of the Savior present in this Part.

The “sixteen times” the Son was sent represents the Calvary crosses in the Lesser Angles of the four Elemental Tablets. The sixty-four types of Man are connected with the so-called “Servient” angels in the Lesser Angles. The Son's name is INRI, the formula of the “Kerubic” angels above the cross in each Lesser Angle. The Seven are the Seniors and King in each Tablet, and the Three are the Names of God in each Tablet.


Docepax, Part 39 of 91, 3rd of ZIM. Zodiacal king: Alpudus. Ministers: 4312 Mundane association: Cilicia Nemrod (“up in the mountains beyond Cathay”).

Saturday, December 07, 1996 7:24 PM

Invoked Docepax according to the usual procedure.

I feel like I'm not feeling the energy clearly; shouldn't trust today's vision to be reliable.

The vision began with the center of the circle opening and dropping me into the air above the Earth. Two regions were shown in quick succession, each with the sigil of the Part overlaid. The first began around Ulan Bator, went east to the sea and enclosed a long island just north of Japan, then jogged west and then northeast to follow the coast of the Sea of Okhotsk. In the second, the sigil began about halfway down the length of Chile, but on the east side of the Andes; it went north into the southwest corner of Bolivia, then west to the Chilean coast and south a bit. The final angle of the sigil paralleled the Peruvian coast, but several hundred miles offshore.

The image twisted again until it showed a portion of the Antarctic continent, roughly south of India. Then it twisted up into the sky, where the sigil became imposed on one of the southern constellations, which I believe is Dorado, the Southern Dolphin.

[Looking at an atlas later, the Antarctic area is actually south of South Africa. There is a long, narrow peninsula sticking out at a 45-degree angle from the main mass at that point.]

Now a feeling of intense longing arises, a desire for something just out of reach, always just over the horizon.

The Voice says: “Each of these places has signified, at some time, the place of treasure, of heart's desire, for some race of men; the Shangri-La or Shamballah, the El Dorado, the Atlantis, in which all desires can be accomplished, all goals achieved, all riches of Earth or of the spirit might be found.

“It is the beginning in the heart of Man of that which carries him forward; that is to say, the desire for something more, something greater than what is perceived to be, is the start of all quests, all searches, all ambition. The will of man first manifests as such desire, with its goal somewhere beyond sight or current knowledge.

“It is the desire which moves men, and this desire is of the heart, not of the body. Some say that sex is the root of all ambition, but this is not so, save for those poor souls who cannot imagine life to be other than what it is. For the others, what point is there in simply attaining that which nearly all other men attain? What point is there in simply repeating the endless cycle of life? What reason for mind, for consciousness, for spirit if one's purpose is solely to be a vehicle for the transmittal of semen?”

There was more, but I could not hear it clearly. I decided to try again another time, and ended the vision.

Friday, December 20, 1996 1:34 PM

After vibrating the Call and the appropriate Names, I felt an intense yellow glow emanating from the chakra just below the heart; the one of which it is said that meditation upon it brings a person his desire. The glow then became sourceless, permeating the magickal space in which I stood.

Now I heard a song in the background: “Over the Rainbow”, sung in a clear tenor voice. And a rainbow arch appeared before me, framing the image of an emerald city; Oz, of course. The yellow brick road wound towards it through fields of flowers. The image receded, and the Deadly Desert surrounding Oz came into view; a trackless waste. And it seems that there are gaps or twists in space within the desert, so that no route can cross it without being interrupted at some point by an encounter with nothingness.

The Voice said: “Is this not the image of the Quest, o man who is god? For only those who seek that which is unattainable are truly on the Quest; if the path were straight, or uninterrupted, then it would not be a quest, but merely travel. To see the vision of that which none have seen, and to seek it out knowing one will fail; that is the Quest. Yet such is the determination of the Questor, that sometimes, in spite of the impossibility, the Quest does succeed, and brings him to that which was envisioned in the beginning.

“No one knows why the Questor succeeds. Is it the will of God? The jittering dice of Chance? An invisible destiny? Perhaps all, or none of these. Yet this is the truth, unalterable and inevitable: if the goal is not an impossible one, then success is hollow, ashes in the hands of him who sought. It does not fulfill his heart, and even in his moment of triumph he knows the bitterness of defeat; for he has defeated himself in his failure to look beyond the possible.

“Now look you again to the desert before us.”

I did so, and saw a myriad of men moving into the desert from the surrounding hills; all of them heading towards the distant city. Sometimes they encountered and fought each other, but mostly they just moved forwards, each along a different, twisting path. And at random intervals one or another would fall into a hole, and vanish from sight. In fact, every one of them so fell, sooner or later. As they vanished, they reappeared upon the hills. Some of them turned away, returning to wherever they came from. Others moved into the desert again; and again, at some different point, they fell and were sent back to the start.

This cycle continually repeated, and there was a gradual attrition of numbers among those who sought. Most returned to some place not seen here. Some few simply sat down at some point within the desert, and refused to move further. These latter drew images in the sand, or carved them out of the surrounding rocks, and proceeded to worship them. I knew that these images were of the vision that had brought them on their quest in the first place. Apparently they were pretending to themselves that these self-made images were that which they had sought, and were comforting themselves that they had achieved their goal.

Finally only three men remained moving. Each moved towards the city from widely separated directions. Each one's eyes were fixed firmly on the city; they did not waver or glance aside at all, not even to look at their immediate surroundings. They stumbled frequently, even fell and injured themselves, but their eyes remained fixed.

They passed the image-makers without noticing them. Then they came to the region where most had fallen before and been sent back. The three also fell into holes; but instead of being transported back, they re-appeared just beyond the region, closer to their goal. Additional holes appeared, and they fell into them time and again; but each time they still reappeared closer to their goal.

Finally they passed out of the desert entirely, and into the green regions around the city. Individually they came to the yellow road, and passed on into the city, vanishing from my sight. But as each entered the city, I heard a celebratory tolling of bells, and a cheer as of many voices.

The voice spoke again: “So it is that the Quest succeeds. It is only with one's attention unwaveringly upon the goal, looking neither left nor right, neither up nor down nor backwards, that one can come to it. It is only by continual seeking, disregarding all else, that the impossible can be attained.

“And what of those left behind? They shall have their chance again, in some future. No failure is forever. They wait only upon the time when they can fix themselves upon the Quest as did those who succeeded. When their hearts have room for nothing else, then shall they come and pass on to their goals.

“Those who have set themselves in the desert shall have a more difficult time of it. For they have willfully shut out the true vision, and replaced it with one that is within their scope. They are willful catatonics, and require a great shock, as of the end of the world, to wake them again. In the meantime, they are happy in their small way.

“Now, there is no need to come again to this Part. For what is here is simply stated, and easily comprehended. The power here is the power of the inspiring vision which draws men on towards the divine, and the power of one-pointed will with which they must pursue it. There is no great mystery here, no recondite wisdom to be revealed; it is all open and aboveboard.

“And here we complete the Parts of ZIM, thirteenth of the Aires. Continue on, and see more of the Quest, and of man's way, in the next Aire. We are done.”

I ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

The first of the terrestrial regions shown is somewhat south of the region Robin Cousins defines for this part, taking in the mountains of southern Siberia east of Lake Baikal and south of the river Lena, and eastward to the sea. They are “mountains beyond Cathay”, just not so far beyond as those Robin assigns.

Each of these regions shown is in some way connected with human myths of a wondrous secret or lost place, where men could attain their hearts' desires. The only one not obvious is the Antarctic coast, which is connected with Atlantis – and with the fabled secret Nazi base, from which some neo-Nazis believe the Reich still plots to conquer the world. The constellation is a triple cabalistic pun, connecting El Dorado, Atlantis, and – since “dorado” means “gilded” as well as “dolphin” or “fish” – with places of treasure generally. The word sometimes refers to the walleye, a fish with large staring eyes – perhaps a reference back to the idea of focused attention. But that may be stretching things a bit.

I am uncertain of the attribute of this part, but it seems superficially to be another Aries-related power, this time with the emphasis on the Solar ideal or “righteous cause” rather than on the Martial work aspect. The persistence of Work in the previous Part here becomes the one-pointed Will which drives the seeker to his goal.

In one place the Voice says that no one knows why the Questor succeeds; in another, it says that he/she succeeds because of his one-pointed attention to his goal. Perhaps this contradiction can be resolved by saying that there is no obvious connection between the act of focused attention and the act of bridging the discontinuity between the man and his “impossible” goal.

 

 

Tedoond or Tedoand, Part 40 of 91, 1st of VTA. Zodiacal King: Gebabal Ministers: 2673 Mundane association: Paphlagonia (Pontic Mountain region of northern Turkey).

December 24, 1996 3:09 PM

The vision opened with the sigil of the Part before my eyes. In an instant, it was transformed into a sword, jabbed vertically into the Earth. There was a very strong sense that the world was wounded by this sword, as if the cut had opened into its most sensitive places.

Now the image drew back, and I saw a knight standing beside the sword. His helmet was off, but he wore armor like a breastplate with chain mail attached to it in a skirt, and as sleeves. His face has a Gallic cast, the skin rough, scarred, and pock-marked. I sense he is ruthless in pursuing his intent. He pulls on armored gloves one at a time and works each hand to get them set right.

Behind them, there is a large assembly of mounted knights, all of them similarly armed, but with varying devices on their shields or breastplates; a plain black cross on a white field is prominent among them. Some of them carry banners suspended from a crossbar on a pole, and these banners are also the sigil of the Part. (I note another device in passing: a sky-blue field with three golden crescents, points upwards, arranged in a downward-pointing triangle.)

The first knight mounts a horse, and puts on his helm. He leans over and pulls his sword from the ground, and raises it in a signal. The knights all come into formation, and they ride as a unit towards the southeast. Turning, I see the road they are on goes down a hillside into a barren valley; on the far side is a castle or fortress. The fort is not in the European style; it appears blockier, more massive, with uncrenelated walls that slope slightly inwards. I do not see it, but know that there is a central building with a domed roof.

Now the viewpoint changes, and I am looking over the shoulder of another knight, standing on the wall of the fortress. He is dressed much as the others, but his face is more Semitic. He appears relaxed and unmoved by the sight of the approaching knights. He turns, gives an order for the gates to be closed, and descends a wide stone stair into the bailey.

My viewpoint follows as he moves towards the central building. That building is in the high Moslem style, with high arched entryways, elaborate decorative tilework, and large, lattice-covered windows. He passes into the building through a smaller double door within the entry arch. From inside this part of the building appears to have a square floor plan. The interior has a large, open central area going up to the dome, surrounded by several stories of balconies.

In the middle is a large stone plinth, chest-high, upon which some object sits. I cannot see it clearly; it is surrounded by an intense white glow. At some moments it appears to be a large cup; at other moments, a staff or sceptre; at other moments yet, a plate or a sword. It may not be that the object itself is changing, but that the glow is projecting the illusions of such shapes into my eyes.

The knight kneels before this object in the “dragon” asana, momentarily bowing his head towards it. Thereafter he sits perfectly still, eyes closed.

Nothing more happens for a couple of minutes.

Now it seems as if the knight's being is somehow dissolving. His form is still there, but there is no sense of a person residing within the body. The spirit in the body becomes indistinguishable from the impersonal spiritual power of the glow; the body itself a mere container, a shell for that power. There is not sense of transfer, or of shifting, but gradually it appears that the power in the knight's body is all there is; the glow around the plinth is vanished, and there is nothing to be seen there.

Once again there begins to be a sense of person-hood about the knight. But it seems as if the person, the individuality, is another shell like the body itself, pulled about the power to contain it and conceal it. The power recedes into some invisible depth inside the knight, and he appears much as he did upon entering the building.

Sounds come from outside; the other knights have arrived at the fortress. The Arab knight stands and returns to the bailey, where he orders a horse to be saddled and brought to him. When the horse arrives, he orders the gates to be opened; the party of knights rides in.

The leader of the mounted knights demands possession of the fortress, by right of arms. The Arab knight grants it freely, so long as he is permitted to leave. The leader demands that he leave his armor behind; he laughs and removes it, putting on rich clothes from a bag on the horse's saddle. He mounts and rides away at a casual pace.

The remaining knights seem both pleased and disappointed. They had expected a fight, and were glad to succeed without it; but at the same time they wonder at this lack of resistance – apparently this fortress was supposed to be a great holy place, which they had vowed to convert to the use of their own religion. They were expecting it to be defended with fervor.

They look around, and find nothing missing that should be in such a place; but the remaining servants seem unconcerned with this invasion of infidels. The knights do not understand, and so shrug it off. They set up their own holy icons, and begin a worship service.

Far down the valley, the departed knight smiles and rides away.

Seer's comment:

This Part relates closely to the path of Mars, connecting Geburah with Binah in Frater Achad's Tree of Life. It particularly references the Tarot card for that path, but concentrates on aspects other than the common interpretation of the card as representing catastrophic destruction.

There are several interpretations of this playlet, as I gathered while it was unfolding.

The first of these is that those who seek some outward, material location for the goal of the Quest are sure to be disappointed. They are looking in the wrong place for the wrong thing; even when it is before their eyes they do not see it. They are like the persons in the previous vision who mistook their image of the goal for the goal itself.

In the second interpretation, the group of knights and the one knight within the castle represent the manifestation of the Martial force within, respectively, the four elemental worlds and the higher, solar realm. While their leader appeared “gallic”, the black-on-white cross emblem of the invaders suggests they are the Teutonic Knights. This group was ostensibly dedicated to freeing the Holy Land from Islam, but in practice was out for profit. The word “slave” comes from these Knights' practice of capturing people from the pagan slavic peoples of eastern Europe, and selling them in Islamic countries. Since neither their slaves nor their customers were Christians, they stayed within the letter of Church law while grossly violating its spirit. Thus they are excellent representatives of the cheapening or perversion of the Quest when its goal is interpreted in mundane terms.

The castle and its surroundings are reminiscent of the Grail legends. The barren valley might be the wasteland in which the Grail Knights wander; the castle itself might be Caer Benoic, the “four-walled castle” in which the grail is housed. The walls of the castle remind me of those surrounding the city of Diyarbakir in eastern Turkey; built of massive, black basalt blocks. Black is both the color of Earth and of Binah. The central building is a miniature Hagia Sophia, minus the minarets; another Binah symbol. (There is also a side-connection between the castle and Crowley's version of the Tarot's Four of Pentacles, which he names “Power”.)

The castle's knight is a spiritual Six to complement the mundane Four of the attacking knights. He is unconcerned with the outward symbols of the goal, but concentrates on the inward reality. He thus represents the proper orientation of the Martial power in the Quest. The events at the altar represent the subsuming of the individual spiritual will of Geburah into the transcendental no-thing of Binah, thus fulfilling the Quest. At the end of that process he is a perfect joining of the transcendental and finite beings, the Heavenly Hexagram. The individualized Self is replaced by the transcendental being, and the finite persona becomes a vehicle for expressing that being within the world.

Wednesday, January 01, 1997 4:10 PM

For some reason I wasn't entirely satisfied with the first vision of this Part, but I don't know entirely why. Perhaps it was the lack of direct comment by the Voice, or the failure to indicate a mundane region for the Part. In any case, I chose to invoke it again.

The vision opened with an image of North America, centered on Hudson's Bay. The sigil of the Part overlaid the landscape; its top crossbar contiguous with Baffin Island, its lower crossbar across the center of the bay, and its vertical bar touching the southern shore of the bay. A great half-circle enclosed it, taking in most of Ontario and Quebec, northern Manitoba, and the eastern portion of the Northwest Territories. The ends of the circle were at the shore of the continent just south of Victoria Island, and at the northernmost tip of Newfoundland.

The circle becomes the bowl of a chalice, made of iron. A seal is welded to the side of the chalice; its outline is a golden rope in the shape of a vesica piscis. Within the vesica the sigil of the Part becomes a sword pointing downwards. Above the sword, a descending dove appears, as in the OTO lamen. Below the sword is an image of the Earth, upon which is engraved a circled cross. A single drop of blood hangs from the tip of the sword over the center of the cross, just touching it.

Now the Voice speaks:

“Is the Cup within the Castle, or is the Castle within the Cup? To the seeker the first seems so; but to the one who achieves, it is known that the latter is the case. Therefore the paradox when the achiever speaks to the seeker; the seeker's mind is clouded with false perspective, and the clarity of his words are turned into confusion.

“Therefore also the great illusion embodied in the card of Mars. It seems that when the power of God attempts to enter the Castle, it is so great in amount that the walls of the castle must surely burst asunder; or else that power must overflow and not be contained. So it seems to all who are bound to a Self; and so each step forward [on the path] appears to be a destruction of that Self and its reconstruction in a larger form, to contain the power which has entered.

“But to he who has abandoned attachment, that Self is but a shadow, a merest wisp of spider-web contained within the cup of the Mother; [said humorously] a “floater” in the Eye of God. The all-encompassing Water is above it and below it, and upon all sides, and penetrates it at every point without being touched by it. When one is at one with the Water, what need of destruction?

“You know my words are so, yet they will not be heard. The destructive power [of God] is not power at all; yet it still seems so to the man below. It does not enter into him, yet still it seems to him that it does. The seeming destruction comes not from the Water, but from his struggle against it, his struggle to maintain his illusion of separation. He cannot stop struggling; he knows not how to do so. Until he learns, his perception of falsehood cannot be overcome and he does not understand.

“Try not too hard to say that which you could not write [i.e., in the comment to the previous vision]. It is pointless for those who are not there, and needless for those who are. Simply say this: There is an end to the interminable cycling of INRI, and that end is the true beginning.

“We say no more, and are done.”

Seer's comment:

The Voice contrasts the perspective of the adept in Geburah with that of the magister in Binah, emphasizing the dramatic reversal that takes place between the two, and the inevitable lack of comprehension of the adept for the magister's words. The first sentence perhaps also echoes the “Khabs is in the Khu” verse from Liber AL; but I am uncertain, as I never understood the terminology of that verse.

Following the Voice's suggestion, I will not comment further.

Vivipos, Part 41 of 91, 2nd of VTA. Zodiacal King: Alpudus Ministers: 9236 Mundane association: Phasiana (a region north of Lake Van in Turkey)

Tuesday, January 21, 1997 4:51 PM

As the vision opened, I saw the sigil depicted as town with tall buildings following the lines of the sigil, and the streets represented by the spaces inside the sigil. The buildings were packed wall-to-wall, so that there was no space to move between them.

I heard sounds of fighting; gunshots, and irregular clatter of steel against steel. A group of men enters the image from the upper left, retreating into the streets of the town while firing rifles at an enemy coming behind them. The other group follows them; these men are dressed in beige uniforms in the style of a couple of centuries ago, with red trim. They move forward by ranks, each rank kneeling and firing as they come to the front, while two or three other ranks behind them reload. The first group of men are not uniformed, and move in a ragged group.

The retreating group leads the others around the corner and into the cul-de-sac of the sigil. They wait, taking a few casualties, until the attackers are well within the closed-off area. Then heavy doors open and they retreat into the buildings, the doors slamming behind them. As soon as they are off the street, a blizzard of gunfire opens up from the upper floors on every side. The attacking force is mowed down before it can escape.

Now I quickly see the sigil overlaid on two parts of the world. The first is the mountainous region of southwestern China, extending down into the central highlands of the Southeast Asian peninsula; it is partially inside the area covered by an earlier part, or nestled into a gap in that Part's region. The second area covers Ukraine and Belarus; the sigil roughly follows their border with Russia down to the Black Sea, then southeast to Odessa and northeast again, curling around to end near Kiev.

The Voice speaks:

“If you cannot avoid the need for walls, then best they should be strong; and 'dunged about with enginery of War'. Yet beware and know: even the strongest walls will fail to protect, when the attack comes from above.”

A quick image of the same town; but now helicopter gunships strafe the streets, killing the locals. The copters move away, and bombs fall, turning the town into rubble.

“And why should a man be concerned with walls, when his essence is untouchable? Why, because he knows not what his essence is. [That is, when he is as yet ignorant of the transcendental spirit within himself.] The walls that he must build are those that he perceives to be himself, those parts of the world that he gathers in so tightly that he forgets the difference between them and the essence.

“The first task of the questing knight is to make his soul (which is not his true being, though he thinks so) impervious to the attacks and temptations of the mundane world. For if he can be defeated – or even distracted – by such as these, then his quest is doomed before it starts. His soul must be a strong wall before the world, through which he allows only such things as benefit his quest, and only at such time as they are of benefit.

“Undistracted, with a will-to-seek sharpened and honed to one-pointedness, he can move forward.

“Now in time will this wall, this armor, become a burden. Its heaviness and thickness will prevent him from moving through a narrow place and into the region where his goal resides. He then must put it off and enter naked into the final steps of the quest. But until then, it will serve him well; good armor, good walls, are not to be dismissed lightly.

“Let us dispense with this weak metaphor, and speak it plainly. The personality of man (and woman) is weak, and is pulled every which way by the events of the world in which it is immersed. For the soul to know itself, it must reject those pulls, and reject those parts of itself that are pulled upon by events. It must will itself to stand apart, unmoved by its persona and dispassionate in its contacts with the world. It must pit its own inner radiance against the force of outward attacks, nullifying each at every point. This is the first task of Hoor, and the reason for much of the violence of Thelema's book.

“When all such intrusions have been nullified, and every opening sealed against their coming, then does the soul rise up to its own level, and shine like a sun in the sky above the worlds of men. And then the quest itself can begin in earnest.

“This is all old news to you, o mage; yet persist, and come again to this place, and other, more interesting aspects of this Part shall be shown. We are done, for the moment.”

I thanked the Voice and ended the vision. But before it closed completely, I caught a glimpse of an 18-rayed sun, shining with brassy boldness in a cerulean sky. Then the curtain was drawn closed upon it.

Thursday, February 20, 1997 12:00 PM

As soon as I formulated an intent to invoke the Part Vivipos again, I received a strong image of the same sun that ended the previous vision. But this time the center of the sun (rather than being of a blank golden color) contained the image of a leering and insolent face in relief, its features protruding from a base like shiny black enamel.

The atmosphere surrounding this image was bright and sunny, but at the same time lacked the compassion, the love, the inclusiveness of a full Solar manifestation. It was not actively malevolent, but definitely amoral and uncaring, as if the power was free to perform any act whatsoever without regard for the consequences. Sunny and uncaring.

I vibrated the Call and the appropriate names, and for a time this power seemed to withdraw.

Now it returned again, and the Sun of the previous image seemed to be a medal or award of some sort, big enough that it had to hang on a ribbon from a person's neck, rather than being pinned on. I could see the ribbon on which it was mounted, red in color, and a hand holding it so that the medal hung free. The medal turned slowly, and I saw that it was hollow behind, the features in negative relief. It seemed a tawdry thing, a bright gimcrack for impressing yokels.

The Voice said: “What price Glory, when it makes a mockery of Honor? What worth is Self, if gaining it means the abandonment of Worthiness? Is kriegsraison to be the code of the Questor? And if so, then what value has God, to allow it to be so?

“Can a man attain to God if he ignores the rights and equal privileges of others? Can he climb upon others' backs to a high place, throwing them down in his progress, and when there, tell God truthfully “I have earned my place”? We say it is not so.

“And in the world, what right has a man to rule, if he takes his place through subterfuge, or calmuny and false witness against his opponents? Or worse, by destroying them utterly through war or murder? None, no right at all; one cannot use evil methods, and expect the consequence to be other than evil. Divine Right does not adhere to such, regardless of their projected image of glory. May they all fall and be accursed.

“The nobility of God calls to the nobility in man; the glory of God adheres to those who seek to emulate God's ways; the light of God comes to those who make themselves fit vehicles therefor; and the peace of God comes to the peaceful in spirit. It is always so, and shall always be so.

“Now, the Spirit of Unrighteousness reaches up, in its influence, even unto the seats of God's ministers; it touches not those seats, but all below is within its compass. And if a man in his quest touches that spirit at any point, then he is set back thereby, until such time as he removes himself from it; all his works shall go awry from that point. Yea, even those who have come unto proximity to the Grail itself can be set back, and cast out again into the wasteland.

“We will not say what is just and righteous. For in a world of infinitely multiplying wonders and diversity, no strict rule can be just and righteous; rules, once set, become fixed, while the world continually changes. The questor must seek, in every instance as it arises, the guidance of the divine spirit as to the righteous course. He must not seek a single rule to cover all cases, a formulaic guide to right action; all such will fail, and quickly, and become the seedbed of unrighteousness.

“The Questor must give himself continually up to the guidance of the Spirit, as well as he can perceive it. And as he learns to perceive it better, and allows it to fill him and become one with him, so will his steps to the goal become sure, even though the track he follows may twist and turn as within the depths of a dark forest. And in the going will his acts be righteous unto others and unto himself.”

Now the image of the medal appears again. I see another hand come down, and wrest it from the first. The new hand is clothed in white cloth, while the former was in red. The ribbon on which the medal hangs turns white, and a glow surrounds both. I see some sort of energy coming into the medal; it interweaves with its material, and fills in the hollow backside with a solid, powerful presence. And suddenly it is a sun again and not a piece of jewelry; the black enamel is gone, and the face in its center no longer leers downwards, but looks upwards beyond the visible sky.

Nothing more came, so I ended the vision.

Seer's comments:

The last couple of visions have been somewhat disappointing to me. Perhaps this is a “been there, done that” sort of thing; in the progression down the Tree of Life in the Parts, we are entering into areas I already know well. Over-familiarity takes some of the fun out of it.

These two visions depict the twofold method of progress on the path of initiation; the first, the pushing away or destruction of impeding conditions, the second, the focusing on and linking to the higher forces that enable further progress. I also have a sense that it relates specifically to the separation of awareness from the personality to become the soul in Tiphereth, and to the actions of the person having achieved awareness as a soul.

The playlet that begins the first vision symbolizes the way in which one eliminates internal impediments: one isolates their effects in oneself, rises above them, and from that higher level, applies an overwhelming force to destroy them. The uniforms of the attacking soldiers imply that the first of these impediments are often social in origin, the consequences of social conditioning, or of the “momentum” of established ideas in one's culture. The rebels who destroy the social soldiers are the innate tendencies of the personality, which are in their own turn destroyed by the entry of a higher power.

The entry into Tiphereth is, for some people, the ultimate expression of this act of rejection and destruction. For these people, the movement is accomplished almost entirely by a willful refusal to continue in any of the patterns of thought and behavior that marked their lives as personalities. By a sustained act of will, which can last several weeks or months, they call down power from higher levels and use it to push away from their consciousness all that they formerly perceived to be themselves; and once separated from it, they destroy every vestige of it in their minds and hearts. As the destruction is completed, the rebound from the act of will pushes their awareness into Tiphereth.

This is an atypical scenario. It requires that the person receive a vision of what they could be as a soul that is so strong it makes life as what they are an intolerable burden. I suspect that only people with urgent spiritual tasks to accomplish in life will receive a vision of such intensity.

The second vision shows that the soul thus liberated has its own problems to deal with. The will-to-reject that sustained the described process is a reflection of the paths of Capricorn and Mars, which connect Tiphereth with Binah and Geburah in Achad's Tree of Life. The voice's first words depict this as an imbalance between the pillars of Severity and Mildness on one hand, and the pillar of Mercy; Glory (in the sense of the glamour of the successful warrior, not as the name of Hod) is contrasted with the Honor of Jupiter, while the Self of Sol is contrasted with the Worthiness of Venus. The consequence of such an imbalance is the abandonment of any moral, ethical, or spiritual limitations on one's actions in pursuit of further victories, typified by the Nazi principle of kriegsraison or “might makes right”. The angels of this Part clearly reject such a course, in both the magickal and the mundane spheres of action, and offer their own alternative view.

The two mundane regions shown in the first vision are strategic “traps” of the sort depicted earlier in the vision, though for nearly opposite reasons. The Chinese/Southeast Asian region is filled with narrow canyons suitable for ambushes. The Ukraine/Belarus region is flat and open but is a vast sea of mud for a large part of the year, suitable for trapping armies; the Russians used it in such a way against both Napoleon and the Nazis.

 

Ooanamb, Part 42 of 91, 3rd of VTA. Zodiacal King: Arfaolg. Ministers: 8230 Mundane association: Chaldea

Friday, April 11, 1997 11:28 AM

The vision opened with the image of a blinding sun in a clear, very pale-blue sky. Two deep-voiced drums each sounded one stroke, followed by a slightly longer pause. The second drum had a tone slightly higher than the first, and was more sharply accented, so that in sequence it sounded like: thump THUMP (pause), thump THUMP (pause). Like a heartbeat, each sequence taking about a second.

The sun expanded and contracted in time with this beat, and with each expansion sent out waves of intense heat in all directions, like the exploding shell of a nova.

This image receded a bit, and I could again see my magickal circle. The central area of the circle became transparent, and I looked down through it to see Africa below. The sigil of the Part was virtually identical with the country of Zaire; the first two segments of the sigil followed the Congo river, while the remainder enclosed the entire Congo Basin east of the river's lower portions.

I fell through the circle towards the Earth, and as I did so, I began to hear more rhythmic sounds. These were higher-pitched and very fast, almost frantic in quality, and were composed of many different elements: sticks struck together, small drums, bells, tin cans, gourds, each adding a different rhythm to the noise. And at the same time I began to hear many voices crying out, high-pitched and ululating. There were no words, only sounds directly expressing feelings of many sorts.

(Simultaneously in my descent, the air around me became oppressively humid and filled with many odors, revealing all the stages of plant growth and decay being carried out at the same time.)

Now a voice said: “How can the steady, slow beat of the Heart of the Sun become the frantic, cacophonous beats of life in the Heart of the World? How can the stately motions of the heavens twist themselves into chaos of events? Where is the Order hidden in this anarchy?”

(I was at the Earth's surface by this time, surrounded by the archetypal “steaming jungle”.)

“O God of Life, how do you rule this world? How does your power become transformed in this way? And why, O God, …” It seemed that the voice was going to continue, but was cut off in the middle of its words. I waited a few moments.

The voice continued: “And God replied: 'Can these little creatures know the slow, steady rhythm of the heavens, o my angels? It is not so, for their lives are too short, their bodies too meager of capacity and time, for my rhythms to be directly reflected in their lives. And so I impose upon them, that their entire lives are fulfilled within a single beat of my heart, or within a few handsful of beats. A silence and a silence bracket their lives, and between these they each live out the double-beat of my heart; one beat the diastole, in which they fill themselves with my Life, the other the systole, in which they expend that life again.'

” 'And over this basic rhythm' saith God, 'I impose in miniature the stately cycles of the heavens, vastly increased in speed, so that they might know them despite their ephemeral ways.' ”

Here I got an image of the solar beats as a wavy line, like the image on a heart monitor, or a musical tone shown on an oscilloscope. And over these large beats were imposed numerous tiny waves, so that the line that formed the two beats was itself composed of smaller waves.

” 'And even these cycles may be too slow for them to see,' saith God, 'and so yet a third level of cycles, smaller than both before, do I impose upon them.' ”

The smaller waves of the line were now themselves made up of yet smaller waves. The double hump of the original beats was almost lost in the smaller upward and downward variations. Only two gentle risings were barely visible; overall the ups and downs of the line appeared random and without any regularity.

” 'It is the combination of these several levels that give the appearance of chaos in the lives of men. And even more so between them, for I give each creature these cycles according to its individual nature; so that there is no unity, no identity in the cycles seen among them. While one is rising another falls; while one is at a peak, another is at a low point; and others are at any point between, in any of innumerable possible combinations of the many cycles.

” 'And so to the eyes of men is the world seemingly random and in perpetual conflict. Yet bewail this not! For each still accords with the heavens, though they see it not, and each in itself depicts those stately cycles above, in their own way and with their own timing. Each brings the heavens into the Earth, after a different fashion. And has been said before [i.e., in a previous Part – B.R.] in their interactions they multiply the possibilities of existence infinitely; for in them, many different moments in the cycles of the heavens are pitted against each other, as if the heavens themselves were multiplied thereby. The potentials inherent in one moment are contrasted with those of another moment; in their interaction – be it conflict or amity – do new things arise which would not otherwise exist; new potentials, new paths, new glories to be seen, creation expanded outwards in wonderful ways.' ”

A pause, and the voice speaks for itself again: “Do thou, o man who is a god, comment upon what has been said, and then rest; for this place has other sights to be seen, other wonders to be known. Another visit is necessary, that we might prepare, and that you might adjust and make ready. Let it be so. We are done.”

I thanked the spirits of the Part, and ended the vision.

Monday, April 21, 1997

Several evenings this past week, I invoked the Part without intention to get a vision, simply to tune into it better. But despite the intention, bits of a vision kept coming through in fragments, which coalesced into a whole in my awareness instantly as I began to write this.

As I perceive it now, the vision begins with an image of the Earth; its curvature is clearly visible. The surface is demarcated into squares. Some of these contain letters, other contain black dots; the latter seem to be focus-points of some sort. My viewpoint descends to ground level, and I see many elementals going to and fro. They are all roughly human-shaped, but with modifications appropriate to their element. I.e., the fire elementals appear composed of flickering red, orange, and yellow flames. The water elementals are made of blue water, in which waves are continually traveling from head to foot and back again. The air elementals have an inner body of cloud, surrounded by a spherical yellow aura which decreases in density and simultaneously brightens as it extends outwards. The earth elements seem formed of dark, rich soil, which is continually churned by wheels buried within. The substance of each elemental is in constant internal motion, though the outward form remains relatively stable.

My awareness enters one of these elementals for a moment. It moves rapidly about the Earth, its motions wild and seemingly random; I feel like the ball in a pinball game. There is little of intent in these motions; the elemental suddenly feels that it should be in a certain place, and it is there. I cannot identify why it feels these things. It just seems that at some moment another position becomes preferable to the one it is at, and it moves.

My awareness is separated from the first elemental (which was of a watery type) and is transferred to a fiery one. Here there is a sensation of spinning, as if the substance of the elemental formed a gyroscope. At the same time there is a sensation of a similar spinning force in the surrounding environment. The axis of this external spin changes locations, and the elemental shifts to follow it. It is apparent that the elemental is trying instinctively to remain in the location where the least of its energy is expended; the farther it is from the external axis, the more energy it expends and the less stable its form becomes. It moves so as to be as stable as possible.

I am moved next into an air elemental. Here it seems as if there are invisible, moving currents in the surrounding environment, like miniature jet streams. Occasionally one of these will shift so as to intersect the elemental, and the current blows it to another position.

And in the earth elemental, I feel only silence for a time; it seems perfectly content where it is. Then, from the elemental's viewpoint something changes. I see no difference in the environment, but to the elemental it is as if the Earth shifted underneath it, and the one place that is right for it has been taken away and put somewhere else. It grudgingly moves to follow, and when it finds its place again, it settles down in comfort.

The Earth falls away from me, or I rise up, and it seems that the Earth is entirely covered by clouds. It is clear to me that these represent the astral nature of Man. And a voice says:

“When clouds obscure the Sun, then does the Earthly self act as it will; which is to say, its elements are pulled hither and yon at the bidding of the currents of power within the world. It knows not why it moves, nor even that it does; and the self is the prisoner of its parts.

“When the Sun comes out, the parts of the Earthly self are drawn together by its power, and their motions reflect its intent.” (I understand this to mean that the soul acts on the lower being by a form of magnetic influence, drawing them into the patterns of its natural state and releasing them from the random currents of mundane life.) This is shown visually: The clouds of the image are burned away, and as the Sun shines down the elementals cease their random motions, and are swept into circular motions about a center; each elemental has its own circle with its own periodicity, like the planets around the physical Sun.

“When the night looms and the Sun's power weakens, yet do they continue their motions, having been trained thereto. They share his residual attractance among themselves, and do not notice his weakening contribution. (I understand this as the stage where the consciousness begins to separate itself from identification with the solar being.)

“And when the Sun is blotted out in the great Night, [“night” was echoed simultaneously as “NOX”) then do they become quiescent, and the world becomes silent. The stars of the night sky shine, and move in their own stately procession.” (That is, when the solar self is overcome by the night of Binah, the elements out of which it formulated itself cease their activity, and the awareness stands as a star in the sky, giving light but no heat, no impetus, to its former vehicles.)

“Thus is the Day of Initiation completed, thus does Man the Child become the distant God over the world. And are there further Days to come? It is not so. In the star-fields there are no days or nights, for there is no Sun; only the brilliant spirits and the endless spaces of creation.”

(Some time while the above was being presented, I also received an alternate image of this process symbolized as the activities of a group of birds in the jungle. These birds (of several species) begin the day establishing their individual mating territories and setting up their nests. During the day they gather in a group to hunt food; it is a cooperative venture, in which species with good eyesight keep watch for airborne predators, while others with good hearing listen for predators approaching through the jungle. In exchange for their alertness, they have the privilege of stealing morsels of food found by other species in the group. The group acts as a unit until after sunset, when they disperse to their nests and go to sleep.)

 

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