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Archive for the ‘30 Day Art Practice’ Category

Painting Title: Ensoulment

Looking back over the images of the past 30 days I realize that they are depicting an alchemical process with an over arching message. I have just been following the impulse of my higher imagination and painting what I see. In the end I feel that an alchemical process of wholeness and integration have happened to me through creating the images. It takes 30 days to change a behavior so it is no accident that I chose 30 days. My internal arrival at a more whole and complete person is now being reflecting in my outer world and like the final image I am magnetic.

After coming up with the title I was curious to see what it meant.

In Christian theology, ensoulment is the creation of a soul within a human being or, to those who believe in pre-existence of the soul, the moment at which the soul enters the body. The exact gestational age at which ensoulment is believed to happen is debatable.

Some theologians have believed that souls are newly created within a developing fetus, while others believe that souls were created before time and are added to the fetus as it develops. Some believe that the soul picks a particular body to enter to accomplish certain things in a particular life.

Common views include ensoulment happening at the moment of conception, at the formation of the nervous system and brain, at the first brain activity, at the time of quickening, and when the fetus is able to survive independently of the uterus (viability). Others place the time of ensoulment at the moment of birth, and others at the moment of first breath.

No matter when it happens, I believe we disconnect with the soul while still in the womb or very early in life and spend a greater part of our life trying to find it again. I believe that is the journey that many of us are on and one that is crucial to the evolution of the species.

(Update: 2-10-10

It was pointed out to me that the image I created was Tiphareth from the Tree of Life, which, by the way I had left out when I painted the Tree of Life several days earlier.

Tiphareth is the Sphere of Beauty and Perfect Equilibrium. It is the gateway to the Causal Plane of Universal Mind, or the Self. The translation from the Astral to the Causal Plane is dramatic as that between the Physical and the Astral. It requires the development of a more subtle aspect of the Body of Light, so the soul may experience that level of awareness.

The Tree of Life sphere Tiphareth contains beauty and harmony. It is the realm of the Christ energy and of universal love. It is also the center of the Tree of Life and thus the energy from this sphere feeds all the other spheres, not unlike the how the heart chakra is the center of the human system and feeds all the other chakra.

Tiphareth is a beautiful place. This beauty helps to awaken the inner quality that everything contains beauty in some way, as long as you look for it. It is another lesson that is handy to take back with you in the physical realm: find the good and the beautiful in everyone and everything you meet. When you can do this, you unlock all that is good within that person or thing and you too get to experience this goodness.

Tiphareth is the heart of the Tree and holds it together by creating harmony and balance. It is the beauty and Light of the Divine descending into humanity, and also the beauty and light of humanity rising to reunite with God. I am pretty blown away by this because of how this came to me from my higher mind and not from research!)


Symbol Analysis:

Sphere:
It is worth repeating the quote I found in an earlier image that included the sphere.
“The circle (or sphere) is a symbol of the Self. It expresses the totality of the psyche in all its aspects, including the relationship between man and the whole of nature. Whether the symbol of the circle appears in primitive sun worship or modern religion, in myths or dreams, in the mandalas drawn by Tibetan monks, in the ground plans of cities, or in the spherical concepts of early astronomers, it always points to the single most vital aspect of life – its ultimate wholeness.” by Aniela Jaffé, ‘Symbolism in the Visual Arts’

The sphere is a symbol for perfection, the total of all possibilities in the limited world, the primordial form containing the possibilities of all other forms, the Cosmic Egg, eternity and the soul.

Six pointed star:

The six-pointed star is made up of two interlacing equilateral triangles, also known as a hexagram is used to represent the Star of David, the merkaba, “as above, so below”, the Seal of Solomon, and the union of masculine/feminine, fire/water. The six-pointed star is the central image within the lotus of the heart chakra.

According to the Ancient Wisdom teachings, the structure of man/woman can be symbolically represented as a downward-pointing triangle (the personality) linked by the Antahkarana or Rainbow Bridge to an upward-pointing triangle (the soul).

The heart chakra is the middle chakra in a system of seven. It symbolizes the two polarities of body and spirit as interpenetrating in perfect balance. The upward pointing triangle symbolizes matter rising into spirit. The downward triangle (similar to the ancient female symbol for birth) represents spirit descending into manifestation. To fully open the heart chakra we need to bring into balance the various aspects of our existence, such as male and female, light and shadow, mind and body, practicality and spirituality.

It is my belief that the dawning Age of Aquarius heralds a socio-cultural age corresponding to the heart chakra. This era marks the importance of balancing the polarities of human existence within the dominating paradigm of the collective conscious. You are moving beyond the period in history where you expect to be spoon fed, from the hand of some “Master Teacher,” whose opinion and perceptual abilities you value above your own into an age where your inner wisdom is used to navigate your particular path in this life.

The age of the heart chakra is an age where these archetypal elements come into balance. Here the warring aggressive drives begin to wane and peace and ecological balance become the predominant concerns. The moments of deep insight, peace, awe, wonder, grace and love that we have all experienced at some time are voices from the Soul. Balance between the sexes, between races, and within the Self through our conscious and unconscious, active and passive, spiritual and material aspects of our existence, are also elements of the heart chakra’s general orientation toward equilibrium. Increased focus on spirituality, with a simultaneous honoring of the body and the earth, is an example of this interpenetrating balance that is emerging today through New Age movements, therapeutic trends in psychology, and popular literature.
We are learning that the material world is here to support us and is not to be disregarded for the sake of the spiritual path. We are here to create heaven on earth both individually and collectively.

The six-pointed star and the sphere give us the understanding that there is a spark of divinity, or ‘soul’ within each of us. Some call this divinity God/Goddess, the Higher Self, the Core Self, the Transpersonal Self, the inner voice, the Buddha or Christ.

The integration of the personality is an on-going process. Once this has been achieved to some degree, the goal becomes one of infusing the personality with the qualities of the soul, or to make the connection with the Higher Self

The soul-infused personality is symbolically represented by the six-pointed star.

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Painting Title: Eyes of Higher Self

Message:
The senses are moving to a transcendent level not just to be used in the 3D world but beyond. The five stars and the five pearls of yesterdays image combine in this image to become five eyes. The five eyes represent the higher senses used in a highly conscious way. Man is mastering and perfecting his senses and they are transitioning into higher realms of experience. The world outside of the physical world is expanding into your experience. You believe that people who have extra-sensory perception have a gift. It is true that it is a gift but all humans have access to it and it is discovered as consciousness raises.

Eyes;

The eye is an archetypical image which stretches back many thousands of years in human history. It appears again and again in myths, sculptures, engravings, and paintings in cultures across the world and throughout history. Throughout his extensive career, Carl G. Jung addressed the archetype of the eye in multiple ways. His interpretations range from a symbol of knowledge to a representation of female genitalia and the womb (Jung, Symbols of Transformation 268) The idea of the eye as a symbol of enlightenment is present in other cultures as well.

The eyes hold meanings that transcend any one point in any one culture and reach into the collective unconscious of the human race.” JungCarl

“The eye-covered figure as a whole is an archetype as well, commonly represented as a type of sun god. It is found in Horus, an Egyptian solar deity, who is covered with eyes. Rudra is the father of the winds in Indian mythology, has eyes on all sides, and is called “the great seer.” He is the one “who of old gave birth to the Golden Seed” (Symbols 122). Mithras, the Persian sun-god, also possesses multiple eyes. Jung argues that the sun is the most logical god: “the sun is the father-god from whom all living things draw life; he is the fructifier and creator, the source of energy for our world. Horus,who is also an eye-covered figure, is a deity that is reborn, signifying new life and renewal, as do other heterotopic figures in mythology” Carl Jung

The eye plays a most important part in occult symbolism, and probably owes it’s origin in western magical designs to the Eye of Horus, which is one of the most frequently used of Egyptian magical symbols. Stripped of all of it arcane symbolism, The Udjat, as the Eye of Horus was called, related to the ‘God Within” because it represented the all-seeing eye of Horus, the sun God. The idea behind the symbol was that, just as there is an ‘eye’ of the world, which is the sun in the skies, so there is an ‘eye’ within which could perceive the inner world of man, and the individual destiny of humans. ( From Magic Symbols, Frederick Goodman )

Many ancient esoteric as well as earth-based philosophies consider the eye as a channel or a passageway into a new dimension. Here the eye is not a physical symbol but rather a ethereal one in which consciousness may enter into a gateway of infinite expanse. This journey is traversed through the pitch-black channel of beingness (represented by the black of the pupil). Once the threshold is crossed, one is said to obtain higher knowledge – a glimpse of heightened epiphany – comparable to enlightenment.

The last paragraph seems to sum up the image and the information I  received very nicely.  It is as though each eye has it’s own portal or gateway to the infinite.

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Painting Title: Initiation of Perfection

Symbol Analysis

Bat

I had a dream last night about a bat. I only remember the bat and not the details of the dream so bat must be significant. I was not surprised to see that it came into the image today, so I better pay attention to the message.

Bats symbolise death and rebirth. Sometimes, they are known as the “Guardian of the Night.” It is largely misunderstood and so many of its symbolic meanings are inappropriately fear-based. The bat is a symbol of rebirth and depth because it is a creature that lives in the belly of the Mother Earth. From the womb-like caves it emerges every evening at dusk and from the womb it is reborn every evening.

Bat is important in Amerindian lore and represents rebirth in the shamanistic ritual death at the initiation as it emerges from the cave-womb of Mother Earth so it’s key note is transition and initiation. It is also the – in that tradition. The Shaman’s death is the symbolic death of the initiate to the old ways of life and personal identity.

To the Buddhists it means Darkened Understanding and it the Chinese tradition it is considered a yin animal because it is nocturnal and it can stand for happiness, good luck, wealth, longevity and peace. In medieval times they were seen as immature dragons. It holds the promise of rebirth and coming out of the darkness.

In the Meso-American sacred book called the Popol Vuh the second book describes the seven tests that two brothers must undergo. The seventh test took them into a house of bats. Huge bats flew through a labyrinth and it was over seen by the god of bats. They had to make it through the labyrinth unscathed. The Native American meaning for bats is also the traditional shamanic death, the breaking down of the former self through intense tests. Bat is the totem of the shaman, teaching people to go into the night of inner darkness and emerge reborn while reminding them that eyes are only one way of seeing clearly. It is a dying off of some aspect of the self that is no longer needed. Change and transformations are the blessings received from this ritualistic death.

This reminds me of being in Mexico some years ago and two friends and I went into the base of a pyramid. When we got to the deepest point in the base we were in a cave filled with bats. I have been afraid of bats in my life so this was a challenging adventure. As we stood together holding hands bats flew all around us, between our legs and over our arms. I remember having very little fear. We decided to leave the pyramid by linking together and not using light even though there were places that presented potential danger if we fell. It was like the labyrinth as we used our perception to get us through the dark. At one point the cave walls became phosphorescent green and we were able to follow the glow to get out safely.

Bat can also symbolise the awakening of great auditory perception. The idea that bats are blind is a misperception and in fact they can easily navigate by sight in lighted situations. They travel through the dark using sonar. This sonar or echo-location can be linked metaphysically to the gift of clairaudience or clear thinking. The awakened ability to hear spirit. Maybe being with the bats transferred their ability to see in the dark to me and my friends.

The bat is also associated with medicine. Bat medicine teaches us to release fear and any pattern which no longer fits in with our pattern of growth. A new beginning, trusting one’s instincts, the bat is powerful medicine.

Pearl

The pearl with its delicate shimmer is thought of as a lunar and feminine symbol and its spherical form is associated with perfection. Because of the rarity of perfectly formed pearls and the pearls enclosure in oysters or other shells, it symbolized for the Gnostic of late antiquity hidden knowledge and esoteric wisdom.

In the early Christian text Physiologus tells of ” a curious shell, ‘the purple oyster’, which, “comes up from the bottom of the sea, … opens its mouth and drinks dew of heaven and the rays of the sun, moon and stars; it thus produces the pearl from the light above…” ( curiously I found this reference after I finished the painting and was researching pearl. I normally would not have painting the pearl purple.)
The pearl also represents water and woman. In many archaic cultures the marine shell, because of its appearance, is associated with the female genitalia, and the pearl is believed to be both the sacred product and the emblem of the feminine generative power. The pearl thus symbolizes both the life that is created and the mysterious force that begets life. It is associated with the life giving power of the Great Mother. It is through this connection with feminine generative power that the pearl becomes a symbol for regeneration and rebirth as well. As a regenerative force, the pearl is often thought to have the power to heal or protect from harm. Shells are a symbol of fertility and of virgin birth.

The making of the natural pearl commences when a grain of sand from the ocean or river floor works its way into the body of a pearl-bearing mollusk. To protect itself from this alien source of agitation, the mollusk secretes a substance (nacre, or mother-of-pearl) that slowly and cumulatively coats the foreign body until it loses its abrasive contours and becomes smooth and spherical in shape. Pearls are rare, pure and precious, flawless and white despite being dredged from the mud, coming from a clumsy shell. On account of its singular origin, the pearl has been a symbol of sacred power since ancient times.

Wherever the cultivation or liberation of the soul is regarded as the goal of spiritual striving, the pearl may symbolize the soul itself. (Finnish people believed that the soul took the shape of a bat when one is asleep.)So little the pearl that results from the irritation of a grain of sand the soul acquires permanent definition and individuality by enduring life in the body.

Pearls symbolize Purity, Spiritual Transformation, Charity, Honesty, Wisdom and Integrity, all the best within us. They are attributes of angelic perfection, which is only achieved by transmutation, and not freely given. Pearls provide a clear vehicle for the advancing states of wisdom, as well as a clean channel for receipt of spiritual guidance. Pearls can stimulate your femininity and help with self acceptance. They lift your spirits and make you feel calm and beautiful.

Since ancient times, the pearl has been a symbol of unblemished perfection. It is the oldest known gem, and for centuries it was considered the most valuable. A fragment of the oldest known pearl jewelry, found in the sarcophagus of a Persian princess who died in 520 BC, is displayed in the Louvre in Paris. To the ancients, pearls were a symbol of the moon and had magical powers. In classical Rome, only persons above a certain rank were allowed to wear pearl jewelry. The Latin word for pearl literally means “unique”, attesting to the fact that no two pearls are the same.

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Painting Title: Fed By The Lotus

Symbol Analysis:

Growing from the mud at the bottom of ponds and streams, the exquisite lotus flower rises above the water and is usually white or pink with 15 or more oval, spreading petals, and a peculiar, flat seed case at its center.  The egg in the image is resting on the seed case and you can see energy coming from it, as the the seeds of the lotus are feeding the baby its wisdom.

The Lotus flower has for thousands of years symbolized spiritual enlightenment.  Lotus offers one of the highest vibrations of any flower. The sacred lotus is an inspiring from-rags-to-riches, from-slime-to-sunshine metaphor of growth and enlightenment. The pure white lotus flower, the only plant to fruit and flower simultaneously, emerges from the depths of the muddy swamp and symbolizes the manifestation of the universal Buddha Nature or Christ Consciousness inherent equally in all life.  We are the Christ Consciousness and the Buddha Nature, it is not outside of us, it is our nature.

Its flowers are considered sacred by the Buddhists of India, Tibet, and China. A manifestation of the myth of divine lotus birth is thought to be the myth which invests Buddha with the miraculous power of imprinting the image of a lotus flower on the earth with every step that he took.

The lotus flower, which is padma in Sanskrit, has a position of great cultural and spiritual significance in Asia.  In Buddhism, the lotus represents purification and disentanglement from the trappings of conditioned existence (samsara), liberation from suffering, and achievement of enlightenment.  The yoga “lotus pose” (padm’asana) is a universally recognizable symbol of wisdom and serenity.  As a visual symbol, the lotus flower is inescapable: it is a core element of Asian iconography.  As a sound, the lotus invocation is forever resonated in the om mani padma hum mantra (“jewel in the lotus”).

From earliest history, the lotus flower appears to have symbolized for Aryans primarily the idea of superhuman or divine birth, and secondarily the creative force and immortality. The traditional Indian and Buddhist explanation is that the glorious lotus flower appears to spring not from the sordid earth but from the surface of the water and is always pure and unsullied, no matter how impure the water of the lake was. It  expresses the idea of supernatural birth and the emergence of the first created living thing from the primordial waters of chaos. Because of this the flower was regarded as the matrix of the Hindu creator himself, Narayana, and of his later form as the god Brahma, who are portrayed, respectively, as reclining and seated upon a lotus flower, as in the pre-Buddhist Vaishnavite Bhagavad-Gita. Conceivably, this was the significance of the lotus when it was first applied to the historical Buddha, Sakyamuni.

The essence of lotus has many healing properties. After lotus leaves are fallen, beehive-shaped lotus pips become ripe in October. There are oval-shaped seeds in them. Lotus pips are called “Yeonsil”, used as medicines. Many people love to eat the lotus root, which has many holes. In addition, Lotus wines and lotus teas, made from lotus flowers, are favorite  drinks.

Egg

In ancient times the egg, due to its shape, was a symbol of the earth. Thanks to its obvious association with the beginning of life, it has also been the basis of many ancient creation stories and is a symbol of fertility, rebirth and the cycle of life.

One such creation myth goes like this: The Great Goddess of darkness, Mother Night, Persephone, brought forth the World Egg in the beginning, mirrored now in the Moon. Then the world was one: warm, glowing, a single undivided thing. It rocked gently; a crack appeared, and the multifarious world was born.

One half of the shell rose to become heaven; the other fell for earth. The first deity emerging was bisexual Eros, blinking his golden eyelashes. Or so said the Greek Orphics, followers of Orpheus, Dionysos’ son, in whose mystery religion we all had multiple lives and strove aesthetically to pull ourselves from the wheel of life.

In Rome, the egg, symbolic of life and fertility, was used in the rites of Venus and various deities associated with the earth and reproduction. In ancient times eggs were honored, worshipped, and called the symbol of the universe, the sun and moon and the beginning of all things.

Number 12

The number 12 became symbolic of a complete cycle and higher frequency of the number 3. Twelve is a multi-dimensional grid or matrix of pyramids within such images as the Tree of Life, the astrological signs of the zodiac wheel and the alchemy wheel of time.

Twelve is the number of what is completed, which expresses the idea that the Universe forms a whole, associated with the idea of differentiation and a perfect and harmonious unit.  12 symbolizes the command and the good, and governs the space and the time, that is to say the operation of the Cosmos, from where its designation of cosmic number. Symbol of material and spiritual food, because of the 12 breads which Jesus Christ broke to the Last Supper, Himself being the Bread of Life.

The number twelve comes up in many religions as a sacred number and we use it in measurement and delineation of time.  We have twelve months in a year and twelve hours on a clock. We measure by the foot, which contains 12 inches and sell by the dozen, the gross, or shilling, all representing numbers of 12. There are 12 fruits of the Cosmic Tree, the pagans believed there were 12 days of return to chaos at the Winter Solstice, 12 days of Yuletide and Christmas and the Chinese recognize 12 Terrestrial Branches in time.

I like the idea of the Christ consciousness, which is the same as our divine nature, being born from the symbol for wholeness and a cycle is completed.  There is nothing new about CHRIST MIND – it has been around forever, in truth long before the one called Jesus became synonymous with the word CHRIST. The name represents a State of Being, not a person. It is the consciousness in which the Son of God was created, it is the term for your true nature and it is who you are. I believe that Jesus took on human nature to model for us how we could embody our divine nature while still in human form.  It is a State of Being that brings Peace and Freedom, and being in the flow of Source energy

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Painting Title: Melissa’s Labyrinth

This is another angelic inspiration in the early morning. This morning I was able to go back to sleep though.

From the research it appears that in this image we have a journey to the self and at the center we unite with our soul/divine self and all the gifts that it brings.

Symbol Analysis

Labyrinth:

“[The labyrinth] is at once the cosmos,
the world, the individual life, the temple, the town, man
[and woman], the womb or intestines of the Mother (earth),
the convolutions of the brain, the consciousness, the
heart, the pilgrimage, the journey, and the way.”

We might note that although the term labyrinth and maze are sometimes used interchangeably, labyrinths, for the most part, are unicursal: meaning having one way into the center and one way out; because mazes are usually multi-cursal: having more than one way in or out, some of which lead to dead ends.

A labyrinth is an ancient symbol that relates to wholeness. It combines the imagery of the circle and the spiral into a meandering but purposeful path. It represents a journey to our own center and back again out into the world. A labyrinth is an archetype with which we can have a direct experience. Walking the labyrinth can be considered an initiation in which one awakens the knowledge encoded within their DNA.

Labyrinths have long been used as meditation and prayer tools. Rebirth and initiation have also been important aspects of the symbolic weight of the labyrinth as spiritual practice and tool for the tending of soul. Throughout Europe it was common practice for labyrinths to be included as part of the festivities of Easter as a symbol of the Resurrection.

A labyrinth contains non-verbal, implicate geometric and numerological prompts that create a multi-dimensional holographic field. These unseen patterns are referred to as sacred geometry. They allegedly reveal the presence of a cosmic order as they interface the world of material form and the subtler realms of higher consciousness.The contemporary resurgence of labyrinths in the west is stemming from our deeply rooted urge to honor again the Sacredness of All Life. A labyrinth can be experienced as the birthing womb of the Great Goddess. Thus, the labyrinth experience is a potent practice of Self-Integration as it encapsulates the spiraling journey in and out of incarnation. On the journey in, towards the center, one cleanses the dirt from the road. On the journey out, one is born anew to consciously dwell in a human body, made holy by having got a taste of the Infinite Center.

Like life & destiny, a labyrinth may be a long journey but it has a specific beginning and a definite end. Like mandalas, a labyrinth offers a holistic route (meandering radius) from the periphery to the center. A labyrinth imprints a ‘royal groove’, a ceremonial pathway designed according to principles such as Harmonic Proportion and Alternance of Energy. For instance, the clockwise (sunwise) and counter-clockwise (moonwise) spins of the meanders map out a balance between the left and right hemispheres of the brain.

A mystical symbol which had been lost to us, has been rediscovered and re-sanctified, and offers us a powerful tool for the tending of our souls today.

As the workers of the hive, bees are symbol of an industrious and prosperous community governed by the queen bee. They have therefore symbolized all that is royal and imperial , in France and in ancient Egypt (associated with Râ, the Sun God).Three hundred gold bees were discovered in the tomb of Childeric I (on the year 481), which showed that the hive was the model of an absolute menarche. Napoleon I used bees as a motif on all his carpets, as well as on his coronation robes.

“Your Teacher will not hide anymore,
but your eyes shall see your teacher.
And when you turn to the right
or when you turn to the left
Your ears shall hear a word behind you saying,
This is the way, walk in it.”

Bee:

I have been fascinated by the bee for a long time, even though I am also allergic to them. I have done a lot of research but will just share a bit of it here.

The bee is associated with service, diligence, the right use of creative imagination and desire, and the collection of wisdom from the experiences of life. The bee is a symbol of industry, resourcefulness and prosperity. These tiny creatures show us there is success and satisfaction in working together harmoniously while still enjoying the sweetness of life. It is associated with the Egyptian goddess Neith, which  linked the bee to the discernment, and administration, of the veiled laws and patterns of Nature, as well as the process of coming to know our own inner divinity as a spiritual fact.

Bee lore goes back to ancient times, when bees were considered a symbol of the soul, of death and rebirth. The bee is also a symbol for wisdom, for it collects pollen from many flowers and turns it into the nourishing honey, which is the gold of bees. There are medieval hymns that referred to the Virgin Mary as the bee hive, and Christ as the honey that flowed from her. In some stories, the Virgin Mary was associated with the queen bee, and in ancient Greece the goddess Demeter was referred to as the queen bee, and her priestesses were the worker bees, who served her. They were known as Melissa’s.

Bees are often considered a symbol of the Goddess or Divine Feminine because they are ruled by queens. In particular, they are associated with the goddess Venus because part of their labor is the indirect fertilization of flowers, all of which come under the dominion of Venus.

Long ago, honey was regarded as a magical, sacred substance. People were buried in it, not only because it was a preservative, but because “bee-balm” as it was called, was thought to contain a resurrection potency. It was one of the libations offered to the gods of Greece, and believed to be the food of poets and the nine muses, who turned into bees.

The beehive is an important symbol in the third degree, and it is extensively mentioned in the lecture where it is depicted as a symbol of industry, hence the work of the Lodge, so that Masons should continue to learn in all stages of life. Bees are able to accomplish large tasks because they cooperate in force, a single bee can do very little. This is in parallel to Masonry, where strength is gained by the active participation of all its members. The bee is also the emblem of several Greco-Roman and Indian gods, including Cupid and Kama, both gods of love. The Egyptians believed that bees were born from the tears of the Sun-god, Ra. Bees are also depicted on many ancient tombs, as symbols of the afterlife and resurrection. This probably came from the fact that bees do not leave their hive during the three month hibernation period, only to reappear later. Some compared this to Christ’s resurrection, whereby his body vanished for three days, only to reappear after the resurrection. Furthermore, bees’ honey and sting are also associated with Christ and Judgment Day. In Ireland bees were legally protected, for they produce honey which in turn produces mead, the drink of immortality that flows in the Otherworld. In Christian allegory a queen bee sometimes represents the Virgin Mary, the hive symbolizing the Church. The coat of arms of Pope Urban VIII and Napoleon I, for example, depicts several bees.

Bee carvings have been found on the temple walls of ancient Egyptians. Indeed, references to honey and its healing powers are found in ancient papyri dating back to 5000 BC.Bees over 100 million years old have been discovered in amber, frozen in time, as if immortalised in their own honey. Bee pollen then and now is described by some as “a life-giving dust”. Welsh and Celtic folklore has abundant references to the sweet substance. At one point

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Heartwings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“ Since words are limited, the wise have often presented truth in a symbolical form, letting seekers discover from their own insight the mysteries at which the symbol hints.”

This quote is representative of my personal thought that symbols have meanings that are different for each of us and this is why I am often relunctant to interpret them.  In the case of this meditation series I am using interpretations that resonate with me because this is my process.  This doesn’t mean the image will mean the same thing to everyone who sees it.

Painting Title: Angelic Kiss

This image came to me at around 4:44 AM which is the time of the angels. Of course I was wide awake after that and couldn’t go back to sleep.  When I looked up what the symbolism meant it seemed to me that this was a direct message from the angels telling me they are always there with me, giving me guidance and sharing the path of consciousness with me and in fact they are me.

Infinity symbol/ lemniscate:

Lemniscate: Also known as the infinity symbol, the Lemniscate symbolizes the endless, infinite nature of energy. A lemniscate is the mathematical symbol for infinity. A mobius strip can be used to demonstrate the idea of infinity, in a strip of paper which is twisted and attached at the ends, forming an ‘endless’ two dimensional surface. It represents unending, unbounded space, time and quantity.  Unlimited abundance. The infinity symbol it represents the meaning of eternity, endless, ongoing, evolving, creating.

In the Waite Smith tarot deck it can be seen above the head of the Magician. Here it can be understood to symbolize the fact that energy cannot be created or destroyed, only changed. Energy lasts forever, in whatever form it takes and everything is linked together. The Magician channels this energy to manifest his will upon the world around and inside himself. Once he has learned to master this energy, he has an infinite resource at his disposal to effect these changes in accordance with his will.

The infinity symbol above the Magician’s head illustrates that he understands the energy of his thoughts always lead to infinite consequence. Some decks depict an additional Lemniscate at the Magician’s throat – this symbolizes the infinite power of the spoken word. This is similar to current thinking that thoughts become things and words have the power to create.

The religious aspect of the infinity symbol predates its mathematical origins. It has been found in Tibetan rock carvings; the ouroboros, or infinity snake, is often depicted in this shape.

The second symbol in the painting is a combination of two symbols that I was able to find, the winged heart and the flaming heart.  This heart for me is definately angelic in nature.

Winged Heart:

For Joseph Campbell the heart is a symbol for life itself.  It is the essence of human existence and one of the few essential organs humans and animals must have to live. If the heart is removed life is gone immediately.

The winged heart is an ancient Sufi symbol that say the way is not through the head but through the heart. The way to fly to God/Divine is to open the heart, to be human and to love and offer life in service to God/Divine and to others. It is the ancient symbol for spiritual love and a free spirit.  To the Sufi it symbolizes the open, free and purified heart,
liberated from the delusion of the ego and the illusory seduction of the Dunya (Worldly Life).  It is the heart that is awakened and attuned to the inborn knowledge of the Divine.

When man treasures the things of the earth, his heart is drawn to the earth. But the heart is subject not only to gravitation, but also to attraction from on high, and as in the Egyptian symbology wings are the symbol of spiritual progress, so the heart with wings expresses that the heart reaches upward towards heaven.

To the Sufi the winged heart means :toward the One, the perfection of
Love, Harmony, and Beauty.For that is the meaning of our name ‘Winged Heart’, which is from an ancient Sufi symbol, meaning the Heart of love for God on the Wings of joy and inspiration.

The Sacred Heart is often depicted in Christian art as a flaming heart shining with divine light.  The Sacred Heart is a medieval symbol of Christ’s sacrifice, particularly within the Roman Catholic Church. The sacred heart signifies the redeeming love of God as the source of illumination and happiness. For me this is more about an illuminated heart that is used as a navigation device, when we are on a path of consciousness.  We navigate with the heart and the mind is only a place to store information.

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Painting Title: Kabbalah Tree of Life

Message:

The Tree of Life and the Kabbalah, which is actual paths, speak again to our journey from being human beings living an earthly existence to embodying spirit and living heaven on earth.  This shift that is occurring now is about bringing spirit to earth so that heaven and balance can be experienced while still on earth.  The paths have become illuminated so the journey is clear.

Symbol Analysis:

Tree of Life:

The concept of Tree of Life has been used in different fields such as religion, science, mythology, philosophy, etc. The Tree of Life meaning differs in different contexts. In different mythologies, theologies and philosophies across the world, it is used as a motif. The concept of Tree of Life is also used in reference to evolution. The Tree of Life is used as a metaphor to explain the concept of common descent.  It is also a reflection of as above so below as the roots connect deeply into the Earth and the branches and leaves reach into the sky.  Tree of Life connects different forms of life/creation, while the tree of knowledge connects the heaven and underworld.

The Tree of Life symbol meaning represents different qualities/virtues like wisdom, strength, protection, beauty, bounty and redemption. It is also considered to be the symbol of ‘Creator’. The tree is associated with the creator because it provides protection, supports abundant fruit production and thereby, regeneration. This analogy can also be used to describe the life of humans. We as humans develop ‘roots’ of our beliefs, ‘branch out’ by means of wisdom and the ‘trunk’ (mind & body) keeps them connected.

The Tree of Life meaning as perceived in different faiths, belief systems and cultures, resonates with a simple and strong message of unity. The Tree of Life symbol indicates that all forms of life are connected through a cosmic energy and that we as humans should live in harmony with rest of the living beings.

The Celts of ancient times believed that trees had several powers and also provided people with food, shelter and warmth. Different life forces including insects and animals took shelter in these trees. These creatures were in turn sustained by the Tree of Life. The symbol of Celtic Tree of Life has been preserved for centuries and is portrayed in various ways today. The different parts of the tree are assigned specific meanings. Roots of the Tree of Life are considered to be the foundation and they symbolize the Otherworld. The trunk of the tree joins branches and roots. It is therefore associated with the mortal world. The branches connect the worlds that are present above and below. The reason behind the Tree of Life becoming popular is that ‘Nature’ is worshiped through this symbol. In the Gaelic language, the Tree of Life is known as ‘crann bethadh’.

Kabbalah

The Tree of Life, the depiction of the Sephiroth of the Kabbalah, is the primary symbolic pattern of modern Western occultism. It is greatly used even by organizations not of the Kabbalistic traditions

Each of the ten emanations within the Sephiroth is called a Sephirah, and together they form what is called the Tree of Life. This Tree is the central image of Kabbalistic meditation; for again, each Sephiroth describes a certain aspect of God, and taken together as the Sephiroth they form the sacred name of God. The Tree also describes the path by which the divine spirit descended into the material world, and the path by which humankind must take to ascend to God.

Kabbalah, according to the more recent use of the word, stresses the esoteric reasons and understanding of the commandments in the Torah, and the occult cause of events described in the Torah. Kabbalah includes the understanding of the spiritual spheres of creation, and the ways by which God administers the existence of the universe.

According to Jewish tradition dating from the 13th century, this knowledge has come down as a revelation to elect saints from a remote past, and preserved only by a privileged few. It is considered part of the Jewish Oral Law by the majority of religious Jews in modern times, although this was not agreed upon by many Talmudic and medieval scholars, as well as many modern liberal rabbis and a minority of Orthodox rabbis.

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Painting Title: The Midas Touch: consider it done!

This painting speaks for itself.  I haven’t done a hand print since Kindergarten so this was fun!

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Painting Title: Egyptian Totem Pole

This image is meaningful to me because of my connection with Egypt and the Goddess Seshat.

“Symbols possess an esoteric language, a secret code, which the [occult] student must decipher and whose meaning he or she must unlock.— Erwin W. E. Watermeyer

I found this quote while researching the symbolism and it reflects my feelings about symbol. I have always believed that symbol interpretation is a personal thing, and people might have different understandings of the symbols. That has always been my hesitation in interpreting the symbols in my images. On the other hand it is fun to see how they all fit together so I will keep doing it for this series.

Symbol Analysis”

The Ankh:

The Ankh is an ancient Egyptian staff sign or god staff symbol or glyph that also functioned as a hieroglyph to symbolize reproduction, sexual union, life, and the zest for life.

The “ankh” symbol which means “breath of life” is shaped like a hand mirror or a cross with a circle on top. Symbol of eternal life. The gods are often seen holding an ankh to someone’s lips and this is considered to be an offering of “The Breath of Life”. The breath you will need in the afterlife. In ancient Egypt, only kings, queens and gods were allowed to carry the ankh, indicating that only the king or god holding it had the power to give life or take it away from lesser mortals.

Egyptian gods are often depicted carrying it by its loop, or supporting one in each hand, with their arms crossed over their chest. The Ankh is also known as the Egyptian Cross or Key of Life, or as the crux ansata, Latin for the cross with a handle. And while it has been adopted as a symbol by many of the modern-day Neopagans, the precise origin of the symbol remains a mystery with leading Egyptologists.

The Eye of Horus:

The Eye of Horus was one of the most common amulets of ancient Egypt. This highly stylized eye of the falcon-head, solar and sky god Horus is associated with regeneration, health, and prosperity. Another name for the eye is udjat or utchat, meaning “sound eye.” The Eye of Horus is an ancient Egyptian symbol of protection and royal power from deities, in this case from Horus or Ra.

Horus, the son of Osiris and Isis, was called “Horus who rules with two eyes.” His right eye was white representing the sun while his left eye was black representing the moon. According to Egyptian legend Horus lost his left eye during a fight with his murderous uncle, Seth, to revenged his father’s death. Seth tore out his nephew’s eye but lost the fight because the assembly of the gods declared Horus the victor. The eye was reassembled by the magic of Thoth. Then Horus gave the eye to Osiris who experienced rebirth in the underworld.

The Eye of Horus itself is represented, not by a human eye as many people think, but by a falcons eye with a tear in one corner, and the separate parts of the eye can be divided in ancient Egyptian measurements into 6 parts, which represent smell, sight, touch, thought, hearing and taste. These are representations of the powers that Horus has as well as the abilities that humans share with the gods.

The construction of the eye follows very precise laws. The senses are ordered according to their importance. And according to how much energy must be *eaten* by the *eye* for an individual to receive a particular sensation. All of the sensory data input is *food*.

Winged Scarab:

Ancient Egyptian symbol for the First Matter raised to spiritual perfection, the scarab also represents the immortality of the soul and its resurrection on a higher plane. This symbolism is directly linked with the rising of the Sun. In fact, since the scarab was spiritually connected with the Sun-rise, it became closely associated with the Egyptian deity Khepri–“god of the rising Sun.” In every aspect, scarab and Egyptian Solar worship were inseparable. During the time of the Egyptians, stone-carved scarab were used as magical amulets, supposedly aiding its wearer with the power of “eternal renewal of life.” Scarabs were also employed as talismans and royal seals.

Much of the significance of the dung beetle can be traced to the natural behavior of several varieties of beetle. They roll a bit of dung into a perfectly round ball with their young, larvae, inside it. The larvae then feed on the nutrients in the dung and eventually climb out. From the point of view of the ancients a new beetle emerging from a dung ball was a powerful representation of creation and life. Thus they immortalized it in hieroglyphic form with the meaning “to come into being” attached to it.

The winged scarab is also known as the heart scarab because it was placed close to the heart of the dead. Heart scarab, usually flanked with falcon’s wings, were funerary talismans. The stone heart scarab was laid upon the breast of the mummy, and this indicated that the guilty soul must stand in the judgment hall in the presence of Osiris. The scarab thus used was to secure exemption from the possible performance of an evil life. Perhaps the most famous example of such “heart scarab” is the yellow-green pectoral scarab found among the entombed provisions of Tutankhamen.

Seven Pointed Star:

The seven pointed star represents the mystical. It is one of the entrances to the Other Side. By following the seven steps of transformation on the ladder of the visible planets (metals), the symbol joins us with the Whole Universe, bestowing personal spiritual transformation. Also known as the Pleiadian Star or Faerie Star, the 7 pointed star is one of the entrances to the spirit realm – the gateway to the Otherworld. Each point on the star represents a pathway, or the 7 rays of manifestation of the Higher Self, as follows: *1st point – Power, Personal Will and Determination. *2nd point – Unconditional Love, Wisdom and Growth. *3rd point – Knowledge and Intelligence. *4th point – Harmony and Tranquility. *5th point – the Powers of Mind and Science. *6th point – Devotion and Honesty. *7th point – Magick. The points blend with each other, nurturing and joining us as one with the Universe, bestowing personal and spiritual transformation.

The Septagram, which is another name for the seven pointed star, is a symbol of the completed work: the seven planets in equipoise. The septagram is a continuously drawn figure having seven points. It is a less common religious symbol than the pentagram, but it is a sacred symbol to Wiccans who follow the Feri (or Faery) tradition, where it is called the Elven or Fairy star.

The septagram is important in Western kabbalah, where it symbolizes the sphere of Netzach, the seven planets, the seven alchemical metals, and the seven days of the week.
In Egyptian mythology the seven pointed star is found at the top of Seshat’s head. Seshat is the feminine consort/counterpart/wife/child of Thoth the Scribe, he who wrote the story/program of humanity’s journey through time. She is a Magician, as is Isis, Thoth, Hermes, etc. Seshat bore the title ‘Egyptian Fairy Godmother’. Her magic wand, with its seven pointed star, was the symbol which represented the source of all creative ideas, consciousness. Seshat was the essence of cosmic intuition. Her powers of cause and effect for any affectation were legendary before the founding of Egypt.

In Egyptian mythology, Seshat (also spelt Sesat, Sesheta, and Seshata) was originally the deification of the concept of wisdom, and so became a goddess of writing, astronomy/astrology, architecture, and mathematics. As goddess of writing, she was seen as a scribe, and record keeper, and her name itself means (she who) scrivens (i.e. she who is a scribe). When Thoth also became a god of wisdom, Seshat was identified as Thoth’s daughter, or variably as his wife.

In this totem we have the symbol of life giving rise to the six senses, which when used together give a protection in the material world as they help us navigate. Out of that rises the symbol for matter transforming into spiritual perfection ending in the seven pointed star the entrance to the other side. Together is represents the steps in the human journey and transcending the the world of the senses to return home.

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Painting Title: Magic Alchemy

When I was lying in bed this morning tuning in for an image for today, one came in at the same time as an airplane flew over, very close to my house, and it was as though the image was sucked right out of my psyche with it. This one came later when I wasn’t expecting anything.

Message:

“When passion and joy align instant manifestation follows. Magic is at your fingertips and it flows from your heart.”

Symbol Analysis:

“The circle (or sphere) is a symbol of the Self. It expresses the totality of the psyche in all its aspects, including the relationship between man and the whole of nature. Whether the symbol of the circle appears in primitive sun worship or modern religion, in myths or dreams, in the mandalas drawn by Tibetan monks, in the ground plans of cities, or in the spherical concepts of early astronomers, it always points to the single most vital aspect of life – its ultimate wholeness.” by Aniela Jaffé, ‘Symbolism in the Visual Arts’

Red Rose

Red Rose is a symbol of desire and passion. The perfect love symbol because they represent all things sensual, sacred, pure and romantic. In ancient Greece and Rome the rose was sacred to Aphrodite (Venus) and was her emblem of beauty – it was said to grow from the blood of Adonis. In the Western traditions the Rose is a symbol of passion, desire, voluptuousness, and physical perfection. The Rose is also a common symbol of eternal life and resurrection.

Hand

Hands can be asking us to look at our creative instincts and follow them. We often ignore our creative instincts, think that there are more useful things to be done with our time, or we may feel that we haven’t the time to engage in such endeavours. The left hand is the receiving hand.

The components of the image say exactly what the message said. That when we are open to receive, aligned with passion and joy from the heart it is almost like magic that way we can manifest desires instantly. If we manifested from our wholeness in a conscious way we can create heaven on earth.

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