‘Heaven’s loud voice?’ …

Blake’s Angel neatly encapsulates aspects of the Books of Daniel and Revelation.

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… “Now is come salvation and strength, and the kingdom of our God,

and the power of Christ: for the accuser of our brothers is cast down,

which accused them day and night…

Therefore rejoice you heavens and you that dwell in them.

Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and of the sea!

For the devil is come down to you, having greath wrath

because he knows that he has but a short time.”

*

Are we to conclude that this is the voice of St Michael?

I think we are meant to.

*

We may wonder after the inhabitants

of the earth and sea on the third day of creation?

And Christ’s participation at this early stage?

*

The argument, presumably, would be that as the heavenly realms

are beyond time, they include all time, and the passages

we have considered so far are certainly consistent with this theme.

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Strength in relation to St Michael we already know about.

*

Salvation is a lifting of veils, or scales, from the eyes:

an awakening into that living realisation which alone grants freedom.

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If some of the traditional attributes of Christ seem to fit Michael,

like casting out devils, then some of the traditional

attributes of Michael can also be seen to fit the Christ.

 

Shadow of the Earth…

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… The Book of Revelation is a notoriously difficult text to understand

because of its symbolism and iconography,

however, chapter twelve, which concerns us here,

is relatively straightforward.

*

It commences with a vision: ‘And there appeared

a great wonder in heaven, a woman clothed in the sun,

and the moon under her feet, and upon her head a crown of twelve stars…’

*

This is an astrological description of Virgo, but wait,

‘…And she being with child cried, travailing in birth,

and pained to be delivered.’

*

If the Virgin is to give birth then it must be the Great Goddess Isis or the

Virgin Mary, or at any rate the Star of the Sea, Stella Maris…

*

Already we start to see the problem.

 The iconography may be precise,

but its interpretation can still be ambiguous,

or could the ‘images-of-heaven’ encompass all of these exemplars?

*

‘…And there appeared another wonder in heaven,

a great red dragon, having seven heads

and ten horns and seven crowns upon his heads…’

*

Lying alongside the constellation of Virgo in the night sky,

coiling around her, is Hydra, and in Greek mythology,

Hydra appears as a many headed snake, but wait,

‘…And his tail drew the third part of the stars of heaven

and did cast them to earth.’

*

Not all the stars of the firmament are visible at any one time,

about a third of them move in and out of view over the rim of

the earth’s horizon during the course of a year.

*

Just as the ‘night-time’ at any one location

is caused by the shadow of the earth

passing across the face of the sun,

a third of the night sky

is also obscured by the earth’s horizon.

*

Bodies, planetary or otherwise,

moving through space are shadowed.

*

But what to make of this psychologically?

*

The ‘shadow-side’ of our personality, obscured by a continually

attention seeking conscious mind,

resides in the unconscious, and whilst lurking there,

shrouded in shade, it can be regarded as our own ‘personal devil’.

Menorah?…

Hanukkah Menorah Jewish Judaica Israel Vintage Brass Chanukah ...

Menorah as Chalice

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… The Book of Revelation can be described

as a book of arcane symbolism.

*

It seems to me astonishing that such a work should have been

accepted into the recommended canon when so many

other far less controversial texts are regarded as apocryphal –

this word which now has connotations of spuriousness or falsity

is derived from the Greek word for ‘hidden’ –

Apocryphal works, then, can be regarded

as those books which possess hidden wisdom.

*

It will be useful to consider the opening few paragraphs

of Revelation and compare them to Daniel’s vision of Michael

which we looked at in earlier posts

*

“It was on the island of Patmos.

I was meditating on the seventh day

when I heard behind me a voice as of many waters,

“I am the beginning and end, first and the last.”

I turned to see who it was that spoke,

and I saw a figure resembling the Son of Man.

He was standing in the middle of seven golden candlesticks.

His beard and his hair were like white wool.

His eyes were flames of fire.

His countenance was bright, as the sun when it shines at its height.

He was clothed in a long white robe.

About his breast went a golden girdle.

In his right hand he held seven stars.

His words rang out of his mouth clearly

with the poignancy of a double-edged sword:

“I am he that lives and was dead.

I possess the keys to death and hell.

I shall live forever more.”

I fell down at his feet and they were like fine-brass forged in a furnace.

He laid his hands upon me, “You must write down all you see in a book,

and send it to the Seven Churches of Asia.

Let all the churches know that I am he who searches

the reins of the heart and gives to every one, according to their works.

Tell them to remember from whence they have fallen,

to return to their first love lest I come upon them like a thief

and remove their candlestick from its place,

thus speaks the ‘Amen’: ‘I know your works, I know that you have a name,

I know that you live, and yet, you are as the dead!'”

*

It might be difficult for St Michael to be described as the,

‘one who is living but was dead’, but

he could certainly lay claim to being regarded as

‘the first and the last’ and also as possessing,

‘the keys to death and hell’…

*

In the Book of Daniel, we may recall,

St Michael was described as a Great Prince,

as a Chief Prince, and as Daniel’s Prince.

‘War in Heaven’…

*

… We have to wait until the final book of the ‘New Dispensation’ before we

encounter a Dragon.

*

“And there was war in heaven:

Michael and his angels fought against the dragon…”

*

The Dragon in question, though, is red and, “… has seven heads,

and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads…”

*

This being the Book of Revelation we may well wonder about the symbolism…

*

Unusually for this text we do not have to wonder for very long for we are told,

“… and the Great Dragon was cast out, that old serpent called the Devil, and Satan…

he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.”

*

At which point we realise that although the book purportedly deals with ‘last things’,

this particular vision has to do with ‘first things’, the Third Day of Creation to be precise,

and the expulsion from Heaven of Lucifer, and the Fallen Angels…

*

Why this Dragon should have seven heads is an interesting question made all the

more interesting by the fact that few if any of the depictions of St Michael

show him in combat with a seven headed Dragon or accompanied by any other angels!

*

Also worth consideration is the attempt to visualise ten horns on seven heads…

*

It can be done thus: the two ‘end-heads’ and the ‘central-head’ have two horns each,

and the other four heads have only one horn each.

*

In this context the phrase, ‘for a time, times, and half-a-time,’

which was first brought to our attention

in the Book of Daniel, and is again utilised

later in this Chapter of Revelation, springs to mind.

*

It is possible that the Seven Headed Dragon is a symbol of time.

Satan is earlier described as the one, “…which deceives the whole world.”

A description which could also serve for time…

*

The Creation, in this schemata, takes seven days to complete,

and seven is the basis for a number of natural rhythms and cosmic cycles,

and is the symbolic number used throughout the text of Revelation…

*

Obviously, we still, in some part, retain this rhythm

by following a seven day week.

*

For the ‘Old Dispensation’, Friday, Saturday and Tuesday,

which is Venus, Saturn and Mars would represent, ‘times’,

whilst Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday,

that is, Sun, Moon, Mercury and Jupiter would be, ‘half-times’.

*

And for the ‘New Dispensation’, Saturday, Sunday and Wednesday,

and their corresponding Planetary Cycles would be considered, ‘times’,

whilst Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and their

corresponding Planetary Cycles would be the ‘half-times’.

*

But does any of this really matter?

Over such things, traditionally, are wars fought

and countless lives lost…

*

With regard to this particular stained glass window we might wonder

why Michael needs to be armoured, with a hand resting on the

pommel of his sword, in order to weigh

the souls of the dead?

 

The Light in the Cathedral

All cathedrals are places of wonder…

Whatever your beliefs, the sheer scale of the construction, the devotion of effort and vision – often spanning centuries – humbles us as we struggle to take in the vastness of their creation.

Chester Cathedral is no exception but it does have an additional quality that I’ve not found when photographing similar buildings. – the softness of the light.

I’ll be doing a blog dedicated to this deeply peaceful place, shortly. For now, here’s a few photographs…

©Stephen Tanham 2022

Stephen Tanham is a Director of the Silent Eye, a journey through the forest of personality to the dawn of Being.

http://www.thesilenteye.co.uk and http://www.suningemini.blog

Last Call for Castlerigg…

sculpture, abbots bromley

*

Tarot Card – The Fool: Penetrated Egoic Nature

results in a ‘reckless fool’.

*

‘There and back again…’

*

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

*

The Road goes ever on and on
Out from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
Let others follow it who can!
Let them a journey new begin,
But I at last with weary feet
Will turn towards the lighted inn,
My evening-rest and sleep to meet.

J.R.R Tolkien

***

‘The Hero’s Journey’


Photograph – courtesy, the estate of Sue Vincent

*

‘…For three days Gwythyr-the-Bright journeyed

in the gullet of the Black Salmon of the Lake of Light.’

– Crucible of the Sun

*

In his book, ‘The Hero with a Thousand Faces’,  Joseph Campbell used knowledge of philosophy and psychology to describe how many human myths share a common fundamental structure, which he called the Monomyth.

What does the Mono-Myth describe?

What relevance does it have to seekers of light in the 21st Century?

How are the Ancient Sacred Sites of all lands linked to these questions?

And what techniques can we bring to bear when departing the ordinary world and embarking on adventures in the sacred realms of the Supernatural Order?

Join the Silent Eye on this magical landscape workshop in the Cumbrian Hills of the Lake District, UK which takes place over the weekend of  May 6th-8th, 2022.

Click below to
Download our Events Booking Form – pdf

For further details or to reserve your place: rivingtide@gmail.com

 

Spirit-Born…

Tarot Card – The Magician: A conduit of forces

From High to Low

*

‘Love under will shall be the whole of the law…’

***

The wind blows where it will…

You hear its sound but know not

Whence it came or whither it goes…

Likewise, those born of the Spirit.

John: 3.8

 

***

‘The Hero’s Journey’


Photograph – courtesy, the estate of Sue Vincent

*

‘…For three days Gwythyr-the-Bright journeyed

in the gullet of the Black Salmon of the Lake of Light.’

– Crucible of the Sun

*

In his book, ‘The Hero with a Thousand Faces’,  Joseph Campbell used knowledge of philosophy and psychology to describe how many human myths share a common fundamental structure, which he called the Monomyth.

What does the Mono-Myth describe?

What relevance does it have to seekers of light in the 21st Century?

How are the Ancient Sacred Sites of all lands linked to these questions?

And what techniques can we bring to bear when departing the ordinary world and embarking on adventures in the sacred realms of the Supernatural Order?

Join the Silent Eye on this magical landscape workshop in the Cumbrian Hills of the Lake District, UK which takes place over the weekend of  May 6th-8th, 2022.

Click below to
Download our Events Booking Form – pdf

For further details or to reserve your place: rivingtide@gmail.com

After the Flood…

*

‘After the flood Noah lived three hundred and fifty years.’

*

When men began to increase on the earth

daughters were born to them…

The Sons of God saw that the Daughters of Man were fair

and they made wives of those they chose.

*

So, the Sons of God lived with the Daughters of Man,

who bore them offspring,

and the Nephilim, or giants, appeared on earth…

These were the Heroes of old, and later also,

Mighty Men of renown.

*

The Lord said, “My Spirit will not always endure

in man for he is flesh, let his days be numbered

one hundred and twenty years.”

Gen. 6:4

 

One name…

Tarot Card – The Lovers: ‘open up and get out of the way.’

*

‘Leaf and flame hath but one name’

*

Yva followed on Abadam’s heels, “O Abadam,”

she cried, “you have walked in the garden in the

east, where every precious stone was your covering.

             *

You were a sealer of the sum, whose works and trappings were

prepared, and set all about you, on the day you were created.

*

You were a guardian of the Holy-Mountain,

anointed in the shadow of the Sacred-Tree.

*

You were perfect in wisdom and filled with beauty,

and you walked with the Spirit amidst the stones-of-fire.

*

Yet, for me, you have relinquished all of this.

I will come with you, wherever you may go.”…

*

THE LIVING ONE

Caravan to Cairns

Stuart France

Two young men, a road trip across the Australian Outback, strange encounters in isolated settlements… and a book that will change one of them forever.

From the harsh heat of the dusty road to the cool of the Temple, two stories… one immediate, one timeless… intertwine to illuminate each other.

Many scholars believe that the Gospel of Thomas preserves a glimpse into the oral tradition of the Essenes. The book is a collection of sayings, parables and dialogues attributed to Jesus. In this unique interpretation author and essayist, Stuart France brings the oral tradition to life, retelling the Gospel in his own words, in the way it may have been told around the hearth-fires of our fore-fathers.

Accompanied by in-depth comments which draw upon the Mystery School Tradition, The Living One provides a new window on an age-old story.

“… fascinating and unique …”  Amazon review

Available in Paperback Amazon UK & Amazon.com

and for Kindle Amazon UK & Amazon.com

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