Michael Tsarion

Daimon est Deus Inversus

Where danger is, there arises salvation also - Holderlin

Arcanum fifteen is the seemingly ominous Devil card. This archetype corresponds to the astrological sign of Capricorn, to the element Earth and to the planet Saturn. Seasonally, it marks the period of the Winter Solstice, the dead of winter. At the Solstice colure the sun has reached its most southerly declination and literally stops still, remaining at the same point for three days. The ancients noticed this strange phenomenon and exemplified it with consummate artifice, so that it has become a central motif in innumerable myths and fables. The analogue which found the greatest universal usage was that of the roi soleil (sun king) who dies on the cross to rise again after three days. This motif was later used by the Christian mythographers to great effect. Their solar-hero Christ also made mention of the great "temple" that will be destroyed and raised again after three days. These so-called "days" are actually the three dark, underworld signs of Capricorn, Aquarius and Pisces.

This sidereal instance, of the cessation of the sun's southerly movement, was commemorated through the ages and is the real reason why we have Christmas or Yuletide. The Christian Fathers artificially altered the ancient calendar to make January be the opening of the year. Their strategy made it seem as if the holiday and festivities of Christmas and New Years had nothing to do with astrological phenomena. However, the very word yule means yoke or wheel, referring to the zodiac which has always been likened to a great wheel in the sky.  Long before the myth of Christ, the 25th of December was the birthday of Horus. The Jews celebrate their new year on January 6th, which was, originally, the birthday of Aion, the twin of Horus. Most of the idioms we now associate with Christmas have their origins in pagan and Gnostic observances.

There are no exalted planets (influences) in the domicile of Capricorn, for this is the dark realm of Chronos. It is the shadow world, the sepulcher of the sun, where the light goes to die. Naturally, the design of the card was not casual or meant to necessarily frighten. Though Tarot has been around for 25,000 years, much of its idiosyncratic imagery was codified in Medieval times and many idioms of the Middle Ages appear figuratively in the Trumps, as they do in ordinary playing cards. Several "archetypal" images, like the Food and the Priestess, are timeless, whereas others, like the Tower and Emperor, for instance, relate to specific events or scenarios. Whether the context be clerical or secular, however, the image of the Devil conjures specific verbal and mental reactions. The figure shown is not some Miltonic Lucifer plunging Prometheus-like from the dome of heaven. He is no stylized Romantic Demiurge. What we see is a caricature-like picture of a demonic hybrid straight out of nightmare. The image was designed partly as a parody of two other cards, the Magician and the Hierophant. In decks where the figure holds the phallic sword the card Justice is also suggested. If there was ever an image which subverted the viewers prejudice and favo rite clichés, this is it. Despite the "matter," however, there is certainly "substance" here, for this is a card of many antique secrets.

Though this card would be considered malign by most, the careful student asks why it is that the very word god comes, strangely enough, from the word goat (Scandinavian gott). (As every Christian knows, the goat has long been a symbol for the "Anti-Christ.") The reason for this anomaly is that prior to the rise of Judeo-Christianity divinity was frequently symbolized by horned, vegetarian animals. This is the reason why monarchs wore crowns with "horns" and why Native Indian Shaman wear the buffalo horns during their rites. It is the reason why Michelangelo added horns to his fine sculpture of Moses. Horns have long symbolized divine wisdom. 

Numerologically, 15 is made from 7 plus 8 (78 being the number of the Tarot). One plus five gives 6 which recalls the Lovers (a card which pictorializes the "Fall"). The number 15 is connected to Adam and Eve seen, again, in this very card. (Adam is assigned the esoteric letter yod which equals 1, while Eve is assigned to the letter He which is 5). Interestingly, in this context, the name of the androgynous hybrid seen in most decks is Baphomet which combines the words for father and mother (Ptah and Maat). Fifteen is also the number of the full moon. Fifteen represents a complete Tree of Life (there are 10 main Sephira, 1 hidden Sephiroth, 3 supernal realms, Ain, Ain Soph and Ain Soph Aur, and 1 shadow realm, the Qlippoth). Together this makes 15. On the Kabalistic Tree of Life the path of the Devil is number 26 which is an all-pervasive number of god. (The words for god in English, Hebrew and Egyptian add up numerologically to 26). The pentagram is often shown in this card while the raised open hand of the Devil stands for the number five. Five is connected, esoterically, to phi, that is, to the supreme creation ratio of 1.618. Everything which exists (from the atom to the neutron star) is founded geometrically on this harmonic. Its symbol is the pentacle or pentagram. Fifteen is also 5, 5, 5 or three pentacles (implying tri-star or trickster). Capricorn is the tenth house of the zodiac. There are ten prominent stars in Capricorn and, Kabalistically, ten is connected with the Sephiroth called Malkuth (the Earth Sphere). Malkuth is the zone of physical manifestation, where Fire, Water, Air and Earth compete for dominion and must eventually blend as Ether or Akash. The strange hybrid "Beast" actually represents this unification. He is not demonic but daemonic.

In the charnel house of Saturn the mythic hero meets his greatest adversaries and undergoes his most arduous trials and temptations. His weapons are lost, his companions are scattered, his resolve is low and his heart is heavy with loss and ennui. So it was with Jason, Samson, Ulysses and Odysseus, etc,. His descent to Hades has been dark and foreboding, nor has he come by personal volition or will. Though he may have been originally lured to his feat by fanfare, he will now not easily recall the reason for his ardor. He has arrived not due to virtue but to vice. His penalty is his own hubris and the ideal of what he thinks he is to become. The ghastly, lonely descent is compelled upon him by the Fates (Universal Intelligence) which would dispel his psychological darkness that he might see, all the clearer, not only who he really is but what his true life purpose is to be. Like Dante, the bravest of us will shudder at the head of the passage which leads from clement climes to the bone forests and lakes of blood. There is no guide but Death over the River of Avernus, no lamp to light the way through hell. 

Abandon all hope, ye that enter through me - Dante (Inferno)

As Dante's path took him from the familiar environs, so it will be with us all at one time or another. As day is followed by night and life followed by death so, in the psyche, there is a perihelion and aphelion. There comes a time when the hands on the clock freeze, when the wine tastes like vinegar, when spirit is eclipsed by matter, love by fear, and happiness by sorrow. As the sword is hammered on the anvil and tempered in the furnace, so is our mortal soul consumed in flames of torment. In this Sturm und Drang we are purged of our systemic illusions. As Nietzsche wrote:

That which does not kill you, will make you stronger.

During the "Underworld Cycle" our rational faculties are not enough to steer the ship of consciousness. We cannot avoid facing the shadows we cast in the "Overworld Cycle" when we moved exclusively from the dictates of the lower ego and appetite, when we followed the herd, signed on the dotted line and toed the party line, as it were. If we emerge from the caves of Annwn at all, it will be as one chastened and resacralized, able to discern what is of true value, internally and externally. Then comes a true affinity with the childlike and eccentric. Then we will understand the difference between life and lifestyle, between doing and being. Then we will not have to be compelled to make time for the simple and fragile, the lowly and the meek. Then the crooked roads will look as walkable as the straight, perhaps even more so.

And, in the end, to such a depth he fell, That every means to save his soul came short, Except to let him see the lost in hell - Dante (Inferno)

Though our wisdom increases as our vanity decreases, we might find that we, like Solomon and Dante, are not easily able to communicate the details of our miasmic sojourn, especially to those infatuated with the worldly carnival, dancing the danse macabre

Ask me not, Reader, I shall not waste breath, Telling what words are powerless to express - Dante

When this card falls for us in a divination reading it generally deals with work, finances, responsibilities and authority figures. It rules the Father, the State and the Freudian “Reality Principle,” and to the "Super-Ego." It also deals with materialism, atheism and lower appetites, with attachment, indolence and inertia. Saturn is the planet associated with restriction, discipline, practicality, experience and social conditioning. Saturn is prohibitive and punitive. He is the lord of time and karma. In astrological terms he is the adversary bringing tests and tribulation. His color is black and his metal lead. He is our ultimate tutor and coach, pushing us to higher achievement and creativity. He the blank canvas on which we paint our vision, the raw marble out of which we carve our "David."

Psychologically, the Saturnian fifteenth card rules all authority figures and imagos, from God, to the Father, the Boss, and the State. It also represents the punitive and prohibitive representatives of society and the oppressive laws and rules we must learn in order to be accepted and established in the world. The Devil corresponds (in one sense) to Freud's "Reality Principle," and also to the "Super-Ego," that part of our ego consciousness which allows us to feel guilt for our moral or physical misdemeanors, and which is our moral conscience. It is the ruler within, the faculty of self-judgment which inhibits man's penchant for cruelty, sadism and violence. It is an ancestral bequeathment but is either reinforced or undermined by our personal life-experiences from the birth hour onward. The conscious and unconscious strengths or weaknesses of our parents, as well as their obvious and subtle behavior patterns has the most dramatic influence and effect upon our own inner conscience (Super-Ego). If the apparatus of the conscience should be impaired, for any number of reasons, we are likely to lose any working sense of responsibility, and will be more likely to commit immoral and even criminal acts upon ourselves and upon others in the world.

Historically, the lack of a healthy Super-Ego in an individual sets the stage for extreme reactions in the external environment. As men and women give over to the bestial, hedonistic and decadent in themselves, there is a reciprocal, compensatory, rise of tyrannical states and leaders - "Big Daddies" - who often begin as people's champions, but who then go on to exercise despotic control, fund police states and advocate incarceration and death-chambers for the pent-up, irascible malcontents and delinquents they deem as sub-human and superfluous. As these autocratic states grow stronger, the individuals who put them in power begin losing more and more rights and privileges, enduring it all with revolting complacency, until their inner anger finally builds up to such an extent that it cannot be assuaged. The leaders, who have their fingers on the pulse of the collective psyche, so to speak, instigate civil strife, and global wars to bleed-off the anti-social angst and restore "normalcy" within their abnormal systems. When that ceases to work satisfactorily, or if things get too out of hand, other more pernicious experiments in social control can be implemented. As the dire pages of history reveal, our instinctual craving for order and security can usher in some of the most devastating consequences which, once started, cannot be reversed. In short, the adjusted Super-Ego assists us to channel our unconscious energies into positive and life-affirming passions and projects, whereas the impaired Super-Ego causes us to ride roughshod over the rights of others, and to spend our time advancing through the loss, humiliation and even death of those who either stand in our way, or who possesses what we crave and think we must have.

The two-figures in front of the Beast, can be seen as the two parents, servants of the Conscience, who are crucial to the development of a newborn child's conscience. As children we look to the parents for guidance and steadying action. The most masculine of the parents (not necessarily the male/father) is likely to represent the prohibitive face of the world and state. Through this prohibitive standard we learn the price we will pay for misdeeds and for breaking taboos. The parent with the more "feminine" disposition (not necessarily the female/mother) can represent the permissive face of culture and world. We are allowed to explore the less taboo ways in which we can channel our darker and unhealthier subconscious energies, and still get a good quota of our personal desires met. We are also rewarded for our good and moral deeds. In all of us there is an attraction-repulsion dynamic regarding the parental figures and what they represent. To the "id" (unconscious mind) it is all seen as restrictive and hostile. The greater the inner conflict between conscious and unconscious drives the more unique our consciences will be. In general, the permissive side is "loved," and admired, while the prohibitive side is "feared," but respected. If the conscience is maladjusted, the permissive side can be despised, and the prohibitive side admired. Whatever complex is developed by a child, we all grow up to be more or less permissive and prohibitive upon ourselves and upon our own dependents. Parents are the government in their home, politicians are the government of the land. God is the government of the unseen, and the priests are his "reps" below. Life is full of "Father" and "Mother" figures (imagos), some harsh and oppressive, some kind and understanding. Our relationship with ourselves and with other people are marked by various levels and intensities of sadism and masochism, dependant upon the calibration of our own inner Super-Egos. This Freudian schemata was well summarized by Machiavelli, the advisor to tyrants, who wrote:

Since love and fear can hardly exist together, if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved

On one level the Devil is a close approximation of the Animus Archetype (Jung), the Dis Pater (All Father). He is Saturn, the organizer, ruler and bestower of material fortune. He gives stability, security and empowerment. But he does not work for free and wants something in return. From his underlings he requires obedience and loyalty. Those of us who do his bidding will see power, success, and prosperity. However, many of us chose to rebel against the punitive side of the Father. Many of us have what the psychologist describe as a negative Animus complex. Women, in particular, can have the course of their entire lives altered because of a negative relationship with the Animus. This can be mistaken for a negative relationship with the physical father, especially if that relationship was problematic. However, the physical father is merely the first individual to receive the projection of a woman's own inner male, that is - her Animus. Unless, the individuals are aware of the difference between the stereotype and the archetype, havoc is likely to ensue both physically and psychologically. Any person's rebellion against the All-Father, usually comes out in two main important ways. One is outright rebellion of the familiar kind (body-piercings, tattoos, dread-locks, bad attitudes, and all), and the other is through identification. The former is well known. The latter is not. "Identification Complex," is a major cause of historical and domestic dysfunctions. As a poor attempt to alleviate psychic unrest it usually gives rise to even greater calamities on all fronts. Psychologists, who frequently have to negotiate smaller but often chronic versions of it with their patients, refer to it as "Transference Complex." When Identification or Transference Complex operates in action we seek to identify with, rather than rebel against, the object of our loathing and hate. It is the way of the sycophant, the hypocrite and the liar. The lie begins with the self but extends to every aspect of their lives. It is one of the root causes for the undoing of the person and the diseased world they occupy.

Identification arises because of the attraction-repulsion dichotomy, and from our subconscious awareness of the power of the Animus. We may despise the Animus for any number of reasons, and strongly feel an inner desire to rebel, or even bring the Animus down. But this desire or drive ultimately gives rise to a powerful inner predicament, for we also desperately need that which we hate, and we need it badly. We need the love and care of the Animus, the Father, and deeply hate ourselves for being so dependent and weak. Moreover, there is a powerful taboo against open or concealed displays of resistance against the all-powerful Father. Should we rebel, it is more often inner shame that is felt rather than true liberation. Additionally, the representatives of the Animus (the parents, the religious and political demagogues, etc.,) are expert at exploiting our existential conflict to suit their own perverse aims. The less we concern ourselves with the hygiene of our own consciousness, the more we will permit such individuals and their exploitative systems to exist. Our very hatred, as well as our love and allegiance, is enough to give them life.

He who fights too long against dragons, becomes a dragon himself - Fredrick Nietzsche

Modern man does not understand how much his “rationalism”…has put him at the mercy of the psychic “underworld.” He has freed himself from “superstition” (or so he believes), but in the process he has lost his spiritual values to a positively dangerous degree. His moral and spiritual tradition has disintegrated and he is now paying the price for this break-up in world-wide disorientation and disassociation - Carl Jung (Approaching the Unconscious)

The Animus is the central and most powerful force (Archetype) within consciousness. It is particularly strong in the lives of women. Through the Animus we are adjusted to the world of physical reality, and are capable of working easily and confidently to create success and to earn comforts and security, etc,. We all covet the comforts and securities that the Saturnian physical and material world offers, and enjoy the benefits that being creative and extrovert bring. We cannot have any of these without the healthy integration of the Animus. It is the driving force behind our desires and passions. It is the masculine force in a man's and woman's life, the power by which we create, feel motivated to get things done, by which we move proverbial "mountains," and make a place for ourselves in the world, or even in history. Astrologically speaking, when we rebel we align with, and channel, the forces of Uranus, Neptune and Pluto. When we conform we align with and channel the energy Sun, Mars and Saturn. When we truly rebel we are ostracized, denied and cursed by the All-Father. We are marked for death, as it were. When we conform we are protected and rewarded. We learn these patterns, and come to understand how the game works, soon after birth. We spend the rest of our lives swinging between the extremes trying to find the problematic compromise point, the oasis between the abyss and the desert, a truce between Apollo and Dionysus. Externally, the conformist society, and the voracious amoral media, both co-opt our inner dichotomy, luring us endlessly with a myriad panaceas and surrogate arenas in which to exorcize our unhallowed desires. In one fashion, and era, it is cool to rebel and rage against the machine while, in another, it becomes vogue to conform and genuflect before the altars of the status quo. Like the naked ones, in card fifteen, we all wear chains loosely around our necks. Mystery number one concerns whether they were put there by our own hands, or by something or someone else. Mystery number two concerns who or what is going to remove them.

There really is no such thing as a “personality disorder,” when one realizes that “personality” is itself a disorder - Michael Tsarion

The God of the testaments, the Jehovah of Judeo-Christianity, is a projection and embodiment of the punitive side of the Animus. He is a creation of the Collective Consciousness of human beings, of its masculine side and, therefore, embodies all that is good and bad about the masculine modality of consciousness. However, by projecting such an exclusively masculine imago, one devoid of a feminine counterpart, we have reaped psychosis and historical havoc. No understanding of our times or of our behavior can be had without a close study of the workings of the Super-Ego, the Animus, and the dynamics of the Archetypes in their relationship to the stereotypes which house them.

…monotheism does not mirror human society. Humans are first and foremost social animals. A deity who was alone, not by choice but because there were no other companions for Him, was a concept without parallel in human society. The god of the Israelites did not have a wife, a son, a daughter, or a mother - Leonard Schlain (The Alphabet Versus the Goddess)

The gigantic catastrophes that threaten us today are not elemental happenings of a physical or biological order, but psychic events. To a quite terrifying degree we are threatened by wars and revolutions which are nothing other than psychic epidemics. At any moment several millions of human beings may be smitten with a new madness, and then we shall have another world war or devastating revolution. Instead of being at the mercy of wild beasts, earthquakes, landslides, and inundations, modern man is battered by the elemental forces of his own psyche - Carl Jung

When it is understood how degenerate and oppressive anti-human governments, religions, creeds, and ideas have their roots of in the dark labyrinthine depths of human consciousness, and when we take responsibility for our own desires, drives and actions, it is then that we may see real proactive change in the world. When we understand how and why the mind works the way it does, when we are able to correctly diagnose ourselves psychologically, and when we instigate appropriate rites and rituals to assist us in processing our dark psychic content, we will then be able to dispense with the myriad vicarious outlets invented by Dionysian witchery which seeks to co opt and thrive upon our existential blight, and make a proactive move toward true, lasting healing personally and socially.

It needs no dissertation to elaborate and certify what the record of history reveals as to this portent obsession of the dour religious consciousness over the centuries. It has left its lamentable record in the tale of corruption, banality, superstition, bigotry and general moral and mental blight that overspread the area of Christian Europe over the middle period which has come to be known as the Dark Ages - Alvin Body Kuhn (Ultimate Canon of Knowledge)

I am not denying that great gains have resulted from the evolution of civilized society. But these gains have been made at the price of enormous losses, whose extent we have scarcely begun to estimate - Carl Jung (Approaching the Unconscious)

The beauty and value of the Tarot lies in its ambivalence. Its rich imagery affords several levels of interpretation. We have seen how the Devil makes a good Animus image. But, conversely, he also encapsulates traits which are reminiscent of the so-called "Shadow" Archetype. On paper, the Animus and Shadow are very different Archetypes, and are at odds with one another. One is order, the other disorder. One is repressive the other permissive. One is constructive, the other deconstructive. Despite its obvious Saturnian nature, some researchers are, however, inclined to take the Devil as a powerful Shadow symbol. It certainly reveals a great deal when we see the Devil as God’s unconscious mind, his own dark side, rather than as a separate, autonomous presence operating at random in the Universe. In the Biblical Book of Job, for instance, God did send out Satan as his emissary to tempt and test his prophet Job. And as those who have experienced psychotherapy can readily testify, the “Shadow” is not altogether a negative presence, but can be, in fact, the very catalyst fostering true catharsis and liberation. As the Latin poets wrote: Daimon est Deus Inversus.

The self lies hidden in shadow: He is the "keeper of the gate," the guardian at the threshold. The way to the self lies through him, behind the dark aspect he represents there stands the aspect of wholeness - Erich Neumann

The shadow roots of personality...and the shadowy link with the archetypes of the antagonist, i.e., the Devil is in the deepest sense part of the creative abyss of every living personality. This is why in myths the shadow often appears as a twin, for he is not just the "hostile brother" but the companion and friend and it is sometimes difficult to tell whether this twin is the shadow or the self...Erich Neumann (Origin and Evolution of Consciousness).

If we do accept the Devil figure as a Shadow symbol, it may make sense why a male and female are seen in front of him. They are the genders that the Shadow eventually unifies through his challenges and trials. As the Alchemists and Magi of old knew, the separation between the masculine and feminine modalities of being is the raison d'etre for the traversal into the realms of matter and even into Hades. We are meant to participate in a hieros gamos or sacred wedding, uniting within ourselves all antipodes. We are here to end, once and for all, the subject versus object dichotomy. Physical and psychic energy must become nucleated once again. This is the goal of all true religion, yoga, magic and ritual. When the microcosm (pentagram) and macrocosm (hexagram) are not in unison we remain materialized and subject to the vagaries of time and space which are under command of the adversarial intelligence. This adversary is, however, (like a shadow) nothing more than a projection of our own personal and collective denial, doubt and fear. It exists only as long as we exist in our present existentially schizoid condition. Though we may each become the adversary's plaything we can, at any time, release ourselves from our bondage. The Shadow is our servant and not the other way around. Fear only destroys its host. The Beast does not roar, he laughs.

The place of conjunction and of re-begettal by the Sun-god, when Osiris entered the moon and she became the Woman clothed in the sun - Gerald Massey

Perhaps it is a truism that we each have to first experience utter disconnection from ourselves and from our dreams before we can appreciate the gift of life. As Martin Heidegger pointed out, the word think comes from the same root as thank. But are our thoughts acts of gratitude? Do we always need calamity before we covet peace and respite? The German poet Holderlin seemed to believe so when he wrote: Where danger is, there arises salvation also. The conjunction of our higher and lower selves is, however, inevitable. Nature leaves us with no alternative. The only variables are whether our participation is conscious or not, chosen or not and on this side of the grave or not. In the Justice card and the Devil card (some decks) we see the Martian sword. This is what is being "judged" in both. It is what has caused our problems. It is the Martian drive for perfection in a universe that is already perfect and the Mercurial discursive intellection which attempts to atomize and comprehend what is implicit and simple to the heart.

The astronautical image of man - and it is nothing but the quintessence of urban-industrial society’s pursuit of the wholly controlled, wholly artificial environment - amounts to a spiritual revolution. This is man as he has never lived before; it draws the line through human history that almost assumes the dimensions of an evolutionary turning point. So it has been identified by Teilhard de Chardin, who has given us the concept of the “noosphere,” a level of existence that is to be permanently dominated by human intellect and planning, and which our species must now adapt if it is to fulfill its destiny - Theodore Roszak (The Voice of the Earth)

…thinking which does not start from and continue in close relation to its foundations in the physical universe must lead to falsity - Alvin Boyd Kuhn

Our ambiguous Chymical Wedding is neither convened nor consummated in the light, whether it be of the physical or psychic kind. It is beyond the auspices of the ego and persona. This is the reason why this silent glowering Hierophant, who presides over the Mysterium Conjunctionis, holds the solar torch downwards. His task is to extinguish the meteoric light of the conscious mind. He is not interested in our fleeting ambitions and competitive ardors. With our fragile flame gone we are actually liberated from the shadows and chimeras of our lower selves. Though, for a while we may not see deeper than our fear we gradually realize that, as our ephemeral light was extinguished, so was he, the very Shadow we ourselves cast and fear so intensely. When God is gone so is the Devil. One is just the reflection of the other in the distorted mirror of the human mind. With new intelligence we discover that shadow has no substance except by way of the light that creates it. The word devil is the mirror image of lived. When we do not live authentically, the Devil takes birth. 

At the obsidian door of the Beast, religion and reason are not welcome. There are no gods or angels in his infernal chamber, only men and women unchaining themselves from slavery to their desires of non-existent heavens and fears of non-existent hells, from their emotional slavery to gods, and other humans that are taken for betters, placed on pedestals and venerated at the cost of selfhood. The dual figures seen in this card, with loosening chains around them, are those about to be freed from their attachments to everything that constitutes a divorce from consummate Selfhood. They represent the sexes, male and female, and both stand naked quietly looking toward us (Rider-Waite). This indicates that they are us. They have their backs to the looming figure of the Beast, which means that they are not in fear of him. They are trying to communicate their message to the holder of Arcanum Fifteen.

In the past they have been morbidly attached to each other and, as a result, lost touch with their inherent constitutional sovereignty. Their chains were those of self-estrangement and the forgetfulness of self. As these chains are removed, the pair experience another divorce, but this time from their mutual emptiness. They are divorced from dependence but wedded to themselves. After such a wedding, they each discover that nothing is required from the other, nor is anything expected, for in freeing themselves they have freed the other also. Now, nothing is given which is not inherent, and nothing exchanged which results in lack. From now on, giving will never entail impoverishment, either materially or emotionally. One does not look at the other to escape looking within. One does not live with the other to avoid their own sense of life. One does not impose the chains of mental or emotional projections upon the other whom they are meant to love, because the difference between Archetypes and Stereotypes is now utterly understood. Each of them proves their love by being vigilant for themselves and for the other, each making sure that their souls are not plunged again into darkness and confusion through misplaced altruism or unrealistic expectation. He will not be dependent upon her, and she will not be dependent upon him. And, more importantly, neither will secretly attempt to make the other dependent. With these dual tyrannies overcome, and with their "dark secret love" finally exorcized, the pair can know true love. Like the spliced apple, their scission was ultimately necessary in order for the seeds of independence and empowerment, within their core, to be brought forth and planted in the ground made fertile by their once valued, but now obsolete, personas.

Man made prisoner by the love of a woman and woman made prisoner by the love of a man are equally unfit for freedom's precious crown - Mikhail Naimy (Book of Mirdad)

Freed from the tyranny of the emotions, from the assumed and consuming roles, our pair can each return to their center, allowing no foreign entity, human or spiritual, to inhabit and dominate their being. (This state is implied by their physical nakedness). Their once greatest adversary, Saturn, has taught them the meaning and value of time and of life. Upon leaving his domain they are no longer life-absent, but are wholly present in the "now." Through his teaching they have become teachers. They remain their own first students, however, and learn their lessons afresh each day. They are in the light and also of it. And they are of the darkness too, for as Blake reminded us, such opposites are woven fine, making a cloth for the divine. With their seeds planted, our pair can each grow straight and strong toward the heavens. Their emotional and spiritual "roots" are no longer tangled up in each other but are where all healthy roots should be; deep in the earth; deep in the Mother of all things.

Come to the center of the earth and there you will find the Philosopher's Stone - Alchemical Motto

My adepts stand upright, their heads above the heavens, their feet below the hells - Aleister Crowley (Liber XC)

When our own personal "Underworld Cycles" are complete, and after our paltry mental lights are dowsed in the dark sea of understanding, we are able to comprehend the exact metaphysical and qualitative difference between light and dark, or black and white. The conundrum of this difference is one of the supreme mysteries of existence, one which is met with in many divergent areas and spheres of experience. It is the reason for our presence on the great chessboard of life. When it is solved, it is dissolved. The king is toppled and the pawns are free, finally released from the Game. 

It is important for high initiation to regard light not as the perfect manifestation of the Eternal Spirit, but rather as the veil which hides that spirit - Aleister Crowley

Darkness is the root of all light, light is matter, darkness pure spirit. Darkness metaphysically is absolute light. Light is merely a mass of shadows as it can never be eternal and is simply an illusion or Maya - Madame Helena Blavatsky

Truly it is in the darkness that one finds the light, so when we are in sorrow then the light is nearest of all to us - Meister Johannes Eckhart

Mystery and imagination arise from the same source. This source is called darkness…Darkness within darkness, the gateway to all understanding – Lao Tzu            

In today's world we are intoxicated with the machinery of light and with our Apollonian constructs. This is the age where the Beast is, therefore, ever at the door. He comes to reinstate balance, for he is the agent of the Natural Order which is feminine in contradistinction to our aggressive, conquestative, masculine polarity. Carl Jung proved that the so-called Shadow is actually the ambassador for the Anima (Soul). (The latter is the "Beauty," the former the "Beast"). The ancients knew that Thoth and Hermes, Anubis and Set, etc., (the male gods), like the Pharaoh himself, were merely agents of Ma'at - Goddess of Balance. 

She presides over the whole of generation into natural existence, leads forth into light all natural reasons, and extends a prolific power from on high even to the subterranean realms - Plato (Timaeus)

Let us remember that the first wife of Adam was not Eve but Lilith, the Queen of Underworld. The first female card in the Major Arcana is the sultry Priestess (the Dark Moon). Let us learn that when we live out of balance with ourselves and nature we drive away and banish our original "mother" and consort. And though we have gone to great lengths to convince ourselves otherwise, the fact is that the treasures of this world, together with the scintillating vision of paradise, conjured by a million priests, potentates and their mesmerized believers, cannot fill the void she leaves. Sitting at the right hand of a god for a aeon will not compare to one second in the presence of an Eve, a Nuith, a Lilith, a Rhiannon, a Persephone, an Isis or a Sophia.

As Michelangelo so beautifully showed us, in his pieta, it is to her arms that the Sons of God descend, after their inevitable dark night of the soul, their scourging and crucifixion. 

Subtitle: The devil is god reversed, from Helena Blavatsky's Secret Doctrine. Later adopted by Irish poet W. B. Yeats, as his motto, upon his initiation into the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn.

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