Aug 272011
 

To understand the magnitude of a divine incarnation, it is necessary to understand the source and nature of the consciousness that is incarnate in the avatar.

Jesus spoke of this consciousness when he proclaimed: “I and my Father are one.” (John 10:). Those who unite their consciousness to God know both the transcendent and the immanent nature of Spirit – the singularity of the ever-existing, ever-conscious, ever-new Bliss of the Uncreate Absolute, and the myriad manifestations of His Being as the infinitude of forms into which He variegates Himself in the panorama of Creation.

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Within the creative Holy Ghost Intelligence are all the governing laws and principles that manifest, sustain, and dissolve every part and particle of the Lord’s universe. The Holy Ghost inherited from Spirit the independence to create and govern within the mandated vast scope of the manifesting powers endowed to it.

This Creative Power, which gives birth and nurture to creation, is referred to in Hindu scripture as Maha-Prakriti, Great Nature, the potentials of all becomings. When this power goes forth from Ishvara (God the Father of Creation) as Intelligent Creative Cosmic Vibration, it takes on a dual nature.

As Para-Prakriti (Pure Nature) it creates and expresses all good and beauty in harmony with the God-tuned immanent Kutastha Chaitanya (Christ Consciousness). Its divine nature is magnificently expressed in the causal and astral heavenly realms.

But as the Vibratory Power descends into material manifestation, it becomes conjointly a deviant Apara-Prakriti (Impure Nature), creating through the circumscriptive laws of gross matter and the uttermost density of delusion. These two aspects of Prakriti correspond to the Christian designations of Holy Ghost and Satan.

The Holy Ghost in tune with Christ Consciousness creates goodness and beauty and draws all manifestation towards a symbiotic harmony and an ultimate oneness with God.

Satan (from the Hebrew, literally “the adversary”) pulls outward from God into entanglement with the delusive world of matter, employing the mayic cosmic delusion to diffuse, confuse, blind, and bind.

The Second Coming of Christ, Paramahansa Yogananda, Discourse 1 (John 1:1-4) & 7 (Luke 4:1-2, 8)

Aug 192011
 

Dear Unknown Friend

The preceding Arcanum – ‘The Moon’ – confronted us with the task of human intelligence to liberate itself from the magical enchantment which separates it from spontaneous wisdom, and to unite itself with the latter, ie, to arrive at intuition. The nineteenth Arcanum – “The Sun” – is that of the accomplished union of intelligence and spontaneous wisdom: the Arcanum of intuition.

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“The children who are fraternising under the sun correspond all the better to Gemini because this zodiacal constellation berings in the longest days to us” says Oswald Wirth (Le Tarot des imagiers du moyen age), thus locating the nineteenth Arcanum in the zodiacal circle of twelve cosmic mysteries or, speaking in the language of C J Jung, in the circle of twelve archetypal force-images of the collective unconscious which work in the depths of every human soul.

For the zodiac is that which the human soul knows unconsciously; it is the book which the soul “ate” and which is present and active only in his “bowels” – in the depths of his being – from whence it renders him strong or weak, fertile or arid, fervent or tepid, according to whether he is in harmony or not with its teaching-impulse.

Now, the teaching impulse called “Gemini” can be expressed by paraphrasing a little the first statement of the Emerald Table of Hermes:

May that which is below be as that which is above, and may that which is above be as that which is below to accomplish the miracles of one thing.

This is the principle of analogy put into practice, taking its point of departure from the principle of cooperation.

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One of the highest aspects of the principle of Gemini, the principle of cooperation, is that which is present in intuition: that of the cooperation between spontaneous wisdom and intelligence. Here it is a matter of a state of consciousnes where  intelligence advances from formal knowledge to material knowledge, ie, from knowledge of the relationships of the things to knowledge of the things themselves.

Meditations on the Tarot, Letter XIX, The Sun

 

 

Jul 172011
 

You must take things by storm: you must thrust intelligence outside itself by an act of will (Henri Bergson, Creative Evolution)

This is the essence of ‘Bergsonian yoga”, ie, the practical method of making intelligence unite itself with instinct on the principle of sympathy, so that the latter can extend its subject matter and reflect upon itself – or, in other words, so as to develop intuition.

Now, the endeavour that Bergson had in mind is what the Cabbala calls KAVANA, and the result of this endeavour – that Bergson calls “intuition” – is called DAATH. KAVANA is profound meditation, ie, the endeavour of intelligence which aims at plunging into the depths of darkness surrounding it.

KAVANA differs essentially from Cartesian meditation, where it is a matter notably of the concentration of the clarity of intelligence itself within itself, and also from Kantian meditation, where intelligence strives to rise above itself by making itself the object of observation, analysis and criticism.

Profound meditation or KAVANA is neither only concentration of the light of intelligence with a view to intensification of its clarity, nor is it only the endeavour of intelligence to arrive at knowledge of itself. Profound meditation is the endeavour of intelligence to probe the dark depths which surround it and to which it finds access by means of sympathy, instead of through the exercise of its own logical, analytical and critical faculties.

Speaking in terms of the Cabbala, it is therefore a matter of the marriage of the principle of intelligence – the Sephirah BINAH – and the principle of wisdom – the Sephirah CHOKMAH – in the ‘middle pillar’ of the Sephiroth Tree. DAATH is therefore the state of consciousness that the church calls ‘intellect illumined by grace’ (intellectus gratia illuminatus) – grace being the principle actualising within us latent knowledge of the ‘image and likeness of God’, and intellect being ‘Bergsonian’ intelligence which unites with and understands things that it would never have understood from within itself.

It is therefore ‘illumined’.

Unknown Author, Meditations on the Tarot, Letter XVIII, The Moon

May 232011
 

A mystical act and a gnostic act ‘precede’ in eternity the act of creation as a magical act; this is followed by the activity of formation by the demiurge, or the demiurge hierarchies, who undertake the work of craftsmanship – work which is essentially that of executive or Hermetic-philosophical intelligence.

The classical Cabala furnishes us with a marvellous example of the peace possible between apparently rival doctrines. In its doctrine of ten Sephiroth, it teaches first the mystery of eternal mysticism – AIN-SOPH, the Unlimited. Then it expounds the gnostic doctrine of eternal emanations from the womb of the Divine, which precede – in ordine cognoscendi – the act of creation. They are the ideas of God within God, which precede the creation – the latter being a conscious act and impulsive or instinctive.

Then it speaks of pure creation or creation ex nihilo – the act of the magical projection of the ideas of the plan of creation, ie, the Sephiroth. This creative, magical act is followed – in ordine cognoscendi, always – by the activity of formation in which the beings of the spiritual hierarchies participate, including man. It is in this way that, according to the Cabbala, the world comes into being, that the world of facts or deeds known to us through experience becomes what it is.

Now, ‘olam ha’assiah, the world of facts, is preceded by ‘olam ha yetzirah‘, the world of formation or the demiurgic world; this is the product of ‘olam ha beriah‘, the world of creation or the magical world which is, in turn, the realisation of ‘olam ha atziluth‘, the world of emanations or the gnostic world, inseparate and inseparable from God, who in his true essence is the mystery of supreme mysticism – AIN-SOPH, the Unlimited.

It is therefore possible – and for us there is no doubt about it – to reconcile the diverse doctrines concerning the creation; it is only necessary to put each of them in its proper place, or to apply each to the plane which is proper to it. The Cabbala, through its doctrine of the Sephiroth, provides a wonderful proof that this is so.

Pantheism is true for the ‘world of emanations’, (olam ha atziluth), where there are only ideas – within God and inseparable from him; but theism is true when one leaves the domain of uncreated eternity to pass on to the creation, meaning the creation of the ancestors of archetypes of phenomena that we know through our experience. And demiurgism is true when we contemplate the world or plane of formation, or the evolution of beings with the aim of coming into conformity with their created prototypes.

But leaving aside the worlds or planes of formation, creation, emanation and divine-mystical essence, one can confine oneself solely to the plane of facts. Then naturalism becomes true – within the limits of this plane, taken in isolation.

Meditations on the Tarot, Unknown Author, Letter II, The High Priestess

May 162011
 

The Zohar tells us that the moon “renounced her place of higher rank” – that of equality with the sun – and that “from that time she has had no light of her own, but derives her light from the sun. Nevertheless, her real light is greater than that which she radiates here below.”

Here below, therefore, the moon reflects the light of the sun, whilst above – where her name is ELOHIM – “her power is manifest in all directions…EL being ‘the dominion of the day’, IM being ‘the dominion of the night and HE in the middle being the remainder of the forces (‘the stars), participating in both dominions.”

Now, the moon, in so far as she is the nocturnal luminary above, she shines with her own light, and it is the sun which reflects her. In other words, the moon is ‘solar’ above and ‘lunar here below, whilst the sun is ‘solar’ here below and ‘lunar’ above.

It is in this sense that EL, the radiant part of the moon’s name above, has the “dominion of the day”, ie, it is the visible sun – reflecting the invisible moon during the day. Similarly, the visible moon reflects the sun (become invisible) during the night. The spiritual moon is therefore the sun which shines at midnight. And it is the spiritual moon – or Isis – Sophia – that Apuleius “saw shining at midnight in its briliant radiance.” For the long vigil in the Isis temple resulted in a vision of the cosmic principle of Isis, ie, the spiritual moon or the “sun at midnight.”

All these things, although presented to us in mythological clothing, relate to the profound reality of the relationship of intelligence and wisdom, and their union – intuition. For intelligence corresponds to the moon, wisdom to the sun, and intuition to the restoration of the “intimate union” of the two luminaries.

Here below intelligence reflects wisdom – or, if it is eclipsed (see Letter XVIII, The Moon), it reflects the terrestrial world of external experience. But there is another intelligence above, a trancendental intelligence, whose “light is greater than that which it radiates here below”, and which – united intimately to wisdom – is “inscribed above among the letters of the sacred name (YHVH), which are four in number”, and which shines in the middle of the night “in its briliant radiance.”

This higher intelligence, this “sun at midnight”, which is the conjunction of the spiritual sun and spiritual moon – or, in other words, the intimate union of intelligence and wisdom – is the “star” of Hermeticism, and it is “The Sun” of the nineteenth Arcanum.

“The Sun” of the nineteenth Arcanum is the “sun at midnight”, ie, the sun that Apuleius “saw shining at midnight in its brilliant radiance,” and it is this “sun” which is the “star” of Hermeticism across the ages. It is the principle of intuition, or the intimate union of transcendental intelligence and wisdom.”

Unknown Author, Meditations on the Tarot, Letter XIX, The Sun

Apr 162011
 

It is with his inner life that the practical occultist is most concerned….when it comes to dealing with the forces of his own inner life, he must work out his own methods and build his own instruments. This is the real secret veiled in the words describing the thirty-second path [‘Administrative’ or ‘Assisting Intelligence’].

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It must be remembered that subconsciousness works wholly by deduction. Give it a premise, and if the premise is false, it will work out so orderly a sequence of consequences from the initial false statement that only the keenest critics can detect the error.

On the other hand, subconsciousness is just as orderly in its development of the seeds of the right knowledge. Thus, invention ever follows close on the heels of observation. No sooner do we perceive, for example, that our thoughts, words and deeds are integrated with an inseparable from the whole cosmic process than subconsciousness begins to elaborate the consequences of this perception.

She does this in two ways: firstly by developing a philosophy of life; second, by helping us to invent means for better expression of our relation to the whole. These means include methods and instruments for dealing with the forces of our inner life, as well as for controlling the forces and conditions in our environment. It is with his inner life that the practical occultist is more concerned.

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Out of the fury and bondage of the Great Work, which has Time (Saturn) for its primary condition, shall come peace and rest.

The Fall into manifestation is to be followed by the Redemption from the misery that our misunderstanding now brings. The power that brought about the Fall is identical with that which is to bring about the Redemption.  This, in very truth, is the mystery of mysteries that Jesus revealed in his parable of the Prodigal Son.

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The fifteenth path begins in the sixth sphere of the Tree of Life, in the grade of Lesser Adept, for the Magus must be perfected in imagination, and must be able to make definite mental patterns. Yet when he does so, it is not of himself, as in the case of the Lesser Adept.

The Magus’ vision is the creative sight attributed to the letter Heh and The Emperor. He sees the world with God’s eyes, and sees it always, therefore, as proceeding in orderly sequence from the centre that is within himself.

The path of the letter Heh is said by Qabalists to be that of the Constituting Intelligence, “because it constitutes creation in the darkness of the world.” Qabalists also say that creation took place with the letter Heh.

The Secret Wisdom of Israel says that the fifteenth path bears the name MOMID, Ma’amiyd (Constituting), because it constitutes the substance of creation in pure darkness. A hint of similar import is in the Gospel of St John. “That which hath been made was life in Him (the Logos), and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness overcame it not.” (John 1:4,5)

The same L.V.X. (ie, light), appears in Bible symbology under the figure of the Lamb, borrowed from the Hindu symbol of Agni, god of fire. The Lamb refers to the mystery of the cosmic sacrifice. In one sense the wise have always regarded creation as a self-sacrifice of the Life Power.

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By traversing this fifteenth path, the aspirant to the grade of Magus associates himself mentally with the cosmic sacrifice. Thus, he unifies his being with the current cosmic, creative impulse. Levi says, you recall, that he who can master the currents of the Astral light becomes the depository, even of the power of God.

Paul Foster Case, The True and Invisible Rosicrucian Order, The Grade of Zelator and The Grade of Magus

 

Mar 242011
 

One becomes conscious of the pure act of intelligence only by means of its reflection. We require an inner mirror in order to be conscious of the pure act. The breath of the Spirit – or the pure act of intelligence – is certainly an event, but it does not suffice, itself alone, for us to become conscious of it.  Con-sciousness is the result of two principles – the active, activating principle and the passive, reflecting principle.

In order to know from where the breath of the Spirit comes and where it goes, Water is required to reflect it: ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of Water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the Kingdom of God (John iii, 5).

Reintegrated consciousness must be born of Water and Spirit, after Water has once again become Virginal and Spirit has once again become divine Breath or the Holy Spirit

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Christian yoga does not aspire directly to unity, but rather to the unity of two. This is very important for understanding the standpoint which one takes towards the infinitely serious problem of unity and duality. For this problem can open the door to truly divine mysteries and can also close them to us….for ever, perhaps, who knows? Everything depends on its comprehension.

We can decide in favour of monism and say to ourselves that there can be one sole essence, one sole being. Or we can decide – in view of considerable historical and personal experience – in favour of dualism and say to ourselves that there are two principles in the world: good and evil, spirit and matter, and that, entirely incomprehensible though this duality is at root, it must be admitted as an incontestable fact.

We can, moreover, decide in favour of a third point of view, namely that of love as the cosmic principle which presupposes duality and postulates its non-substantial but essential unity. These three points of view are found at the basis of the Vedanta and Spinozism (monism), Manichaeism and certain gnostic schools (dualism) and the Judaeo-Christian current (love).

Meditations on the Tarot, Letter II, The High Priestess

Jul 072010
 

There may be certain precursors to successful magical procedures, including perfect spontaneous timing, heightened and receptive consciousness to the point of unconscious subordination to divinity, absolute confidence in the cosmic force. Free will united with obedience to the higher intelligence. It may also be more conducive to positive results if magic is conducted whilst the magician is in motion. It seems less likely that stasis would be more of an optimum state than movement if there is an intention to bring about transformation within it.

Although the potential is there in everyone and although the preconditions for success are not impossible to understand, one may, in theory, simply chance upon the optimum conditions for making magic. This is the chaos theory (I think). In the Western world, the probability that success in this area may be brought about by chance may well be greater than the probability of their being actual magicians, which is not to say such individuals do not exist. Or individual. Maybe there is but ONE magician, whereas surely there must be an infinite number of chances. It is difficult to determine because most people have fallen out of sync with the rhythm of the universe and there is evidence to suggest that there can only BE one at any given moment. Maybe the spirit of magic, the soul of creation, moves transiently through each of us with unfathomable reason.

If we have fallen out of sync with the rhythm of the universe, does this then mean, I wonder, that there is another universe with perfect timing at this moment – how close is the zeitgeist of the earth to the plan of a higher intelligence? Does it randomly coincide – at which point we would presumably be at a peak of civilization – or must we achieve a particular state of collective being if we are to join forces with the cosmic instigator?

Jun 192010
 

It is in we ourselves that there is to be found the ‘Edenic’ layer, of that of Paradise before the Fall, of which an account is to be found in the book of Genesis of Moses. Do you doubt the essential truth of this account? Descend into the depths of your own soul, descend as far as the roots, to the sources of feeling, will and intelligence – and you will know.

It expresses in symbolic language the first layer (first in the sense of the root of all that is human in human nature) of human psychic life, or its ‘beginning’. Knowledge of the beginning, initium in Latin, is the essence of initiation. Initiation is the conscious experience of the initial microcosmic state (this is the Hermetic initiation), and of the initial macrocosmic stage (this is the Pythagorean initiation).

The first is a conscious descent into the depths of the human being, to the initial layer. Its method is enstasy, ie, experience of the depths at the foundation within oneself. Here one becomes more and more profound until one awakens within oneself to the primordial layer – or the ‘image and likeness of ‘God’ – which is the aim of enstasy. It is above all by means of the sense of spiritual touch that this experience is effected. One can compare it to a chemical experiment undergone on the psychic and spiritual plane.

The second experience – that we have designated ‘Pythagorean’ from a historical  point of view – is based above all on the auditory sense or sense of spiritual hearing. It is essentially musical, just as the first is substantial or alchemical. It is by ecstasy – or rapture, or going out of oneself – that the macrocosmic layers (spheres or heavens) reveal themselves to consciousness. Pythagoras’ ‘music of the spheres’ was this experience, and it is this which was the source of the Pythagorean doctrine concerning the musical and mathematical structure of the macrocosm.

Christian esotericism unites these two methods of  initiation. The Master had two groups of disciples – ‘disciples of the day’ and ‘disciples of the night’ – the first being disciples of the way of enstasy and the latter those of the way of ecstasy. He also had a third group of disciples ‘of day and night’, ie, those who possess the keys to both doors at once, to the door of ecstasy and that of enstasy. Thus, the apostle, John, author of the Gospel of the Word-made-flesh, was at the same time he who listened to the heart of the Master.

He had a twofold experience – macrocosmic and microcosmic –  of the Cosmic World and the Sacred Heart, of which the litany says: Cor Jesu, rex et centrum omnium cordium. It is thanks to this twofold experience that the Gospel which he wrote is at one and the same time so cosmic and so humanly  intimate – of such heights and depths simultaneously. There, the macrocosmic solar sphere and the microcosmic solar sphere are united, which explains the singular magic of the Gospel.

Unknown Author, Meditations on the Tarot, Letter VI, The Lover