Πέμπτη, 31 Οκτωβρίου 2013

The Μinotaur, the Soul and the Εgo


The Μinotaur, the Soul and the Εgo

A human being is always seeking wisdom and truth. But the truth has never been hidden; the human being hides himself from it, because he allows himself to be guided by the Minotaur, the bull, the primordial drive of self-maintenance. 
He who enters the labyrinth to engage in the confrontation with his own Minotaur, should stand in the triangle of knowledge, love, deed. There he will see what the world is up to and he will behold the original unity of everything and everyone.

Addresses from the Haarlem Main Temple

Yet among the mature we do impart wisdom, although it is not a wisdom of this age or of the rulers of  this age, who are doomed to pass away. But we impart a secret and hidden wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glorification.’ We can find these words in Paul’s First Letter to the Corinthians. We are all people who seek wisdom and truth, but not the truth that is the result of images and ideas. 

Truth, based on mental concepts, is hollow and empty, because when our images and thoughts disappear, this truth will also disappear. And it is certain that our thoughts and images will disappear. Jesus, the human being who is awakened in God, says: ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life.’ Way, truth and life are the same; they are three words for one reality, namely wisdom, not the wisdom of this age and of this earth, as Paul says, but true, divine wisdom is truth and life in one.

Therefore, true wisdom is not abstract, mental knowledge, and not information collected and stored in the databank of our brain. The mind is a necessary tool, but wisdom is the gift of God that sets us aglow with its warmth from the depth of our heart and ultimately irradiates our being as Light and life. The wisdom of the gnostic is folly in the ears and eyes of this world. In classical antiquity, the great sages were also called prophets and seers, often described or represented with a blindfold before their eyes.

The blindfolded seer is, indeed, a peculiar paradox. It does not mean that the sage or seer does not see this world; he sees and fathoms it better than any other person. It means that he is no longer touched by this world; he has become blind to the world; he beholds the world from another, higher plane or level. His earthly senses have become still, blind, but his spiritual senses are wide-awake. 

The sage is no longer entangled in the nets of life in matter. On earth, he does what has to be done. He follows the suggestions of the Light in his heart, and he is blind or deaf to the suggestions of the ego, if they might still exist – the blindfold covers his eyes and ears. He beholds the original unity in God of everything and everyone. He has destroyed the delusion of the separated life as an ego, or rather, he has destroyed the primordial inner being.

He has recognised that the point of view that we, as ego, are independent, autonomous individuals, is our greatest mistake and limitation. He has left this point of view behind, abandoning it forever. In our Spiritual School, it is the process that is called the endura, the gradual neutralisation of our egocentric existence. The essence of the sage is found in the Gnosis, in the omnipresent, spiritual Light. 

Indeed, true wisdom is complete folly in the eyes and ears of this world – it is not the wisdom of this age, not dated wisdom; it is not the wisdom of the so-called rulers of this earth. The rulers and the age will perish, and their wisdom with them. Therefore, the blindfold of the seer has a profound meaning. Without this blindfold, we go astray in the self-created labyrinth of this world.

The blindfold is the attribute and symbol of the endura. True seeing, spiritual seeing, is not possible without this blindfold. If the pupil ever wants to wake up unto true wisdom, he or she must first have been blindfolded, while our earthbound thinking, our mind and longing, focused on matter and ego, will have to become silent.

Obviously, they fulfil very necessary functions in the earthly life of the personality, but other than that, they are silent. The voice of the sage can only be heard in the silence. The I decreases; he, the other one, the true, original, inner being, that which I truly am as a child of God, arises from its hiding to true life and is ultimately raised from the grave.

Now the question crops up: What comes first in our life? This is not a rhetorical question; it is a vital question. It determines, to quote Shakespeare’s words ‘to be or not to be’. Upon awakening in the morning when Now the question crops up: What comes first in our life? This is not a rhetorical question; it is a vital question. It determines, to quote Shakespeare’s words ‘to be or not to be’. Upon awakening in the morning when another day begins, what is the first thing that comes to mind? 

The pleasant surprises or disappointments that the day will bring or which resulted from the days before? The problems that exist, that have existed or that are still to come: the things that we reject, that we do not want, or the things that we would like very much, unpleasant situations, pleasant situations, our health, our material certainties or uncertainties? 

What comes first in our lives? Is it perhaps the inextinguishable longing for truth, for true life, the deep yearning for wisdom, for freedom, not as a spiritual flight, but as no longer being able to do otherwise? Of course, by all kinds of methods, we are able to train our thinking to make a certain idea prevail, but the way to liberating wisdom is not a method, not an exercise, not a technique, belonging to the so-called wisdom of this age.

The ego has a whole range of pitfalls. J. van Rijckenborgh once said: a human being is born with the yearning for truth; it is the jewel in the heart that has radiated since his birth. Obviously, a great deal preceded it during previous incarnations. A Rosicrucian is not ‘made’ and he cannot be ‘produced’ by any method. He is born a seeker for reality. It is an undefinable longing that blows as a vague memory in our heart during childhood. 

Many children feel it, experience it, and sometimes do not know what to do with it, or cannot get any help for this deep, inner feeling. Perhaps you recognise something of this. They were those wonderful moments in childhood, when you felt that there was more than what you saw and heard and were offered from all sides.

There was a calling, a homesickness; there were moments of inexplicable longing, sometimes of a knowledge, which you could not share with anyone; you remained silent and became older. And along with becoming older, there was a chance that this inexplicable longing became covered by the earthly layers of developing life in matter. Nevertheless, the jewel in the heart does not allow itself to be silenced. 

This is why so much may happen in a human life. And ultimately, we have assembled here in this temple of the Rosycross, in the temple of wisdom, truth and life, in the temple where we receive the power to walk the path. ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life.’ These words of Jesus resound in our heart. We did not allow the jewel to be buried under the earth layers. We continued to react to the call. We did not let go of the wonderful longing and the undefinable knowledge of our childhood.

And now we ask ourselves: What really comes first in our life? Perhaps the answer crops up from silent contemplation, detaching from the mists of everyday life, and confronts us, perhaps for the umpteenth time, with the sole purpose of our presence on this planet. This purpose is finding the truth concerning the all-existence, our own life and the realisation of this truth in and through our own life. 

Therefore, we know that truth can never be abstract, mental knowledge, but is life, and ultimately also our life and being. The truth has never been hidden from the human being, but the human being hid himself from it. An old saying says: There are a thousand veils between man and God, but none between God and man.

The human being is standing with his back to the truth. The Spiritual School would like to help, stimulate and incite the seeking human being to repent and turn heart and head towards the Light. All of us are seekers for the truth. We have an unquenchable thirst for liberating wisdom. 

Deep within, we know that ‘way, truth and life’ are one. We seek true fulfilment of life. We long, as Paul says: ‘for the wisdom of God, which God decreed before the ages for our glorification.’ None of us can say that he or she has already achieved this glorification. The concept of ‘achieving’ or ‘having achieved’ puts us on the wrong track,

The call resounds to us: Do not turn your back on the Light! However, how often does it not happen that we nevertheless do so? A word, a remark, a certain situation, and we are flung into the eddy of the ego, and sometimes this happens as quick as lightning. Do not turn your back to the Light, and do not continue on the old path! Dare to wind the blindfold around your head and open your inner organs of perception to the Light. When you were still a child, you had already been given the thread of Ariadne. Never let go of this thread again! We certainly know the classical legend woven around the thread of Ariadne. 

We do not want to go more deeply into this legend now, but only highlight a few main elements. There is the labyrinth, the chaos and tangle of our sensory activities and reactions, the labyrinth of our longing and desires, and above all the tangle of our thoughts and drives. Next we see Theseus, the human being who is called by the Light and is threatened to be overwhelmed by the earthly power, living in the centre of the labyrinth, the nucleus fire of the ego.

It is the Minotaur, the bull, the primordial drive of self-maintenance. And we also see Ariadne, love, offering her thread, the thread of insight and inner knowledge, to Theseus, the human being who seeks liberation. And she gives him the sword, with which he can defeat the Minotaur, the sword as the power to act, to turn love and insight into action. We may recognise the triangle: love, knowledge, deed. 

They are the three words, chiselled in the memorial stone for our Grandmaster in the Rose garden at Noverosa. In his own labyrinth, Theseus defeats the bull, the driving power of self-maintenance and egocentricity. He knows how to use the sword, given to him by love. The thread of insight, knowledge and clear perception, which he had fastened at the entrance when he entered the labyrinth, shows him the way back to the exit, to the liberation. This is a very profound idea: before entering the labyrinth to be confronted with our own Minotaur, we have to stand in the triangle.

True love, impersonal love, is the basis of the triangle. It is the divine love that sets our heart aglow from within and also constitutes the breeding ground of the living powerfield of the Spiritual School that is omnipresent. The two other sides of the triangle, arising from love, are clear insight or knowledge and the power to act. All of us have these three divine gifts at our disposal – here and now, and we should not have any doubt about this. However, we also must have the courage to truly stand in this triangle. 

The poet Goethe expressed it very strikingly in his tragedy, Faust: ‘What you have inherited from your forebears, acquire it to possess it.’ We may bear the divine inheritance of our Father, it is at our disposal without price, but this does not mean that we really possess it consciously. We have to obtain it, we have to prove by our mode of life that we allow ourselves to be possessed by this inheritance.

We possess it when it possesses us and we wholly surrender to it. We must absolutely move the centre of gravity of our old life to the depth of our heart, as the answer to the questions: what comes first in our life? Is to be found in this depth? If we are prepared to give up our old life for a life in light, truth and freedom, the answer will be clear. 

What matters in the old life is the existence of the ego. Whichever way we look at it, the ego is the pivotal point around which everything turns. It relates everything to itself. This is why it is an ego, after all. With regard to this bull, the Minotaur, we still think of another place where we encounter the sword, namely in chapter 10 of the Gospel of Matthew, where Jesus says: ‘I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.’

This statement is seriously misinterpreted, not only due to ignorance, but also due to deliberate misleading in order to force dissenters, by mental or physical violence, to give up their so-called errors and, if this does not succeed, to wipe them from the face of the earth by the sword. The word ‘sword’ is then used literally as well as metaphorically. History is replete with examples of this until this very day. ‘I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.’ On the path to liberation, there is absolutely no sweet peace for the ego, something like a nice, quiet place, where the I might sunbathe in the ‘gnostic light’. 

There is no liberation for the I, but from the I. To this end, Jesus hands us the sword – Jesus himself is the sword, the power of the resurrected, divine, inner human being, who defeats the bull in his own labyrinth. This sword is never used against something or someone outside ourselves. It is the sword that cleaves our old being. It is not the I that defeats the I – if this would succeed, the I would become supreme – but this sword gains the victory in the labyrinth of the ego.

We are only asked for total surrender, conscious selfsurrender, to the triangle of love, insight and power, or love, knowledge and deed, radiating in us. The source of this triangle can be found in the depth of our heart, where the new centre of gravity of our life is lying. Once the old being has been defeated, a wholly different consciousness emerges that does not show any similarity to the old egocentric consciousness. The new consciousness is microcosmic; it does not have a centre of the I, and it does not possess one specific focal point.

The reborn microcosm itself is wholly conscious. From old pictures, we know those beings with wings, within and without, wholly covered with eyes. Wings represent the fiery, radiant structure of force lines of the microcosm, and an eye symbolises consciousness, particularly the eye within the triangle. However, microcosmic consciousness is not the end of the journey. Is there actually an end in the divine development? The microcosmic consciousness is taken up into the divine cosmic consciousness and this, in its turn, is taken up into the conscious, macrocosmic state, into the universal consciousness.

Free Pentagram Volume 32  Number 5  2010
Δημοσίευση σχολίου