Geomantic Bet (Saturn, Saturday, Left or Inner Nostril)

ב

Geomantic carcer.svg          Geomantic conjunctio.svg

I begin with Bet’s figures because Bet occupies a privileged place in all of the assemblages of double letters. It is the first letter after Alef and it gives shelter to the first letter and through its relationship to the other doubles begins the process of differentiation in creation. Carcer and Conjunctio bear witness to Bet’s character and it is from that character they arise and to which they return. In that movement of going and returning, they develop a network of affiliations which develop and modulate that character.

In the planetary circuit, Bet precedes all of the doubles but firstly Gimel. In the sequence of the week, it is the Sabbath, the bezel and treasure mounted in the series of days, between Pe and Kaf. Upon the plane of orifices that constitute the face, it is the left nostril and with Tav is the secret to the regulation of the vital breath. Within the Tree of Life, it is the highest double, crowned with Keter on the central pillar and resting upon Tifaret. Carcer and Conjunctio accompany it in all of its operations.

Continue reading “Geomantic Bet (Saturn, Saturday, Left or Inner Nostril)”

Running and Returning

The Sefer Yetzirah enjoins us to both run and return and Ari Kaplan rephrases that in a useful fashion, pointing out that to run is to swing into the mystical and visionary state while to return is to come back to our critical and analytical framework and to subject what we experienced in the visionary state to disciplined contemplation. What we extract from that disciplined contemplation is what we will use to run forth again, to push more deeply into the mystical and visionary.

Continue reading “Running and Returning”

[NB] Highs and Lows, Saturn’s Days

I have this sense, somewhere between an intuition and suspicion, that most people have an affinity for this or that column as it is represented in the Tree of Life, this or that column through which they relate more easily to the divine. The talk of left- and right-handed work in some occult circles seems to be a somewhat simplified version of this. We can talk a bit, then, about the sorts of work in a similar fashion by examining some of the archetypes that attach themselves to these columns.

Continue reading “[NB] Highs and Lows, Saturn’s Days”

[NB] And Neognostic Feminist Noire is also a Thing?

Because tell me that isn’t what Jessica Jones is. Well, okay, it is a bit redundant to use ‘neognostic’ and ‘noire,’ but in this case I think the intensifier is necessary. Moreso than a standard noire piece, Jessica Jones (the character) plays the role of a the soul navigating the fallen world. Her discovery of agency in the midst of her sinful nature, her momentary liberation, and her failed effort to express that liberation within the confines of the sinful world, make Jessica Jones (season 1, at least) nothing less than a gnostic parable.

Spoilers.

Continue reading “[NB] And Neognostic Feminist Noire is also a Thing?”

[NB] Lifting the Stars: Broken Channels and Geomantic Models of the Fall and Salvation

I’ve talked a bit about my peculiar reworking of the geomantic planetary affinities based around my study of Sefer Yetzirah and the alignment of some of my personal gnosis with the Lurianic currents of Kabbalism (main post here, a correction here). While there are logical reasons for these sorts of changes, they also just better articulate the spiritual structures within which my spiritual work unfolds. When I revisited old charts taken to study spirits, they became much more intelligible once I read them in light of these assignments.

Continue reading “[NB] Lifting the Stars: Broken Channels and Geomantic Models of the Fall and Salvation”

Rectification

“Experience, which destroys innocence, also leads one back to it.”—James Baldwin, No Name in the Street

Placing the distortions I have traced out within the broader Gnostic framework of the Fall, of the separation of self-knowledge from divine knowledge, allows for a better account of what their correction entails. The model of distortion is also a model for how to move toward clarification. Clarification requires appreciating that correction is a moving target, that the world of time does not cease within our lifetime.

Understanding this becomes part of the process of clarification. If you want to reach your goal and the goal is moving, you need to know it is moving.

Continue reading “Rectification”

[NB] Tlazolli and Populus

The tlazolli (‘trash’) compex that Sigal describes in The Flower and the Scorpion sits in my head with the dynamics of Populus, with its dark mysteries and potencies. Here, in brief, is Sigal’s sense of the tlazolli complex:

“Tlazolli first relates to trash. Second, it forms excrement, waste. Third, it creates life through its use in fertility (fertilizing the crops). Fourth, it takes life, allowing a gateway to death. Fifth, it is specifically gendered: the Nahuas link tlazolli to women and femininity, but also to an indeterminate, in-between notion, perhaps moving femininity beyond gender. Finally, as Burkhart points out, tlazolli signifies chaos.” (24)

That the tlazolli acquires ties to the moon through some of the goddesses associated with it is also of interest on this point.

The fertility of the trash puts us back in Philip K. Dick territory, too.

The association between tlazolli, dead mothers, and infant souls also provides one more way in which the mysteries of the lunar Populus and Saturnian Carcer entangle.

Garden of Forking Paths

Phil Hine’s latest enfolding post comes at an opportune time for me, meeting my thinking around the insights structuralism has into myth. Specifically, this:

In India, there are dozens of different chakra schemas, which for me, indicates that they are (to an extent) metaphoric arrangements for structuring and directing bodily experience – sensations and feelings. As these schemas have been transferred to the west however, due to a variety of historical processes, they have become reified – so that one particular schema – the seven-chakra schema – has become dominant, and is widely thought to have (and thereby experienced as having) a seperate ontological status and to operate in a quasi-medical fashion.

The reificiation of myth follows the same pattern as the reification of ritual praxis described here. This process of selecting a model and giving it ontological status seems to be more acute in the last century of Western occult thinking, but it seems to have some old roots.

Continue reading “Garden of Forking Paths”

The Work of the Mother

I have made the contrast between the great ancestress and the Mithraic mode before, but I want to turn toward it more directly. There is something in it of the contrast between a feminine and masculine mode, but it is more than that, encompasses and overruns that. It reflects a fundamental difference in attitude toward the world and our place in it.

At its heart, the contrast relates to how they approach the mystery of the heavens. What I have called the Mithraic mode isn’t really just about the Mithraic mysteries. Rather, the Mithraic mysteries are a convenient hook upon which to hang a discussion of a certain kind of gnosticism, one that seeks to free the soul from the world and ascend beyond it.

Continue reading “The Work of the Mother”

Witches & Wizards, Oh My

Words are funny things. They have meanings but they can also be given meanings. I am a pushy and quirky sort, so when it comes to some words, I often care less about what they usually mean, than what they can possibly mean. That possible meaning takes place against the horizon of meanings they have had, but I aim to shoot past them.

It is with this attitude that I want to talk about how I like to use the terms ‘witch’ and ‘wizard.’ I know that the terms have a few centuries of struggle rolled up into them, and to a certain extent I am positioning myself in that struggle even as I try to move the line. Still, brass tacks, I can’t get into that other horizon if I pin myself down to fighting over the accrued meanings.

Continue reading “Witches & Wizards, Oh My”