About Anne-Marie Wegh

De auteur van dit boek, Anne-Marie Wegh, woont en werkt in de veertiende-eeuwse Sint Bonifatiuskerk in Horssen. Hier begeleidt zij onder andere retraites. In haar boeken combineert zij haar kennis van beeldtaal in het algemeen en haar eigen spirituele ervaringen met de beeldtaal van de bijbel en die van andere wereldreligies.

Kundalini Awakening

Kundalini Awakening

In our pelvis, at the level of the sacrum, lies a power source of divine origin that allows us to take the next step in evolution. In spiritual traditions the knowledge of this amazing growth potential was shared only with a small group of initiates. The masses have received only veiled clues, through the symbolism in myths, fairy tales, legends and other folklore. Also in the sacred writings of religions this subject is spoken about with great caution and usually only in metaphors.

Only in the yoga world explicitly is spoken about this mysterious divine energy: the kundalini-shakti. Western practitioners are usually unaware of it, but the entire eightfold path of Yoga aims to awaken this latent source of power.

However, special exercises are not necessary and direct stimulation is not wise. The kundalini-energy awakens when the spiritual aspirant is ready. When there is a genuine interest in growing towards God, and a willingness to give up the personal self. And if some degree of purity has already been achieved at the level of body, thinking and doing.

The Yoga philosophy, with all its precepts and emphasis on meditation, is focused on this preparatory phase. Patanjali, the first one in the 2nd century BC. to put the ideas of the Yoga tradition in writing in 196 sutras, does not mention the kundalini. Undoubtedly from the standpoint that this knowledge can have disastrous consequences in the wrong hands.

The Caduceus (kundalini), a sculpture by James Muir

Once active, the kundalini initiates an intensive purification process. Those who are not prepared may have to deal with various physical and / or psychological problems. However, the kundalini energy is not the cause of any inconveniences, it only magnifies an existing imbalance. The kundalini process is fundamentally a healing process.

Psychologically, the ego is stripped of all its “impurities,” injuries and unnecessary ballast, built up from childhood. While some traditions promote destruction of the ego to realize the divine, it would be better to speak of pursuing a transparent ego. A personal self that has been purified to the extent that, like a clean window, it allows all (divine) light to pass through unhindered.

This is a process of years that results in a state of detachment, accompanied by great inner peace and joy. This process of purification and emptying out is a necessary condition for the next step: reunification with God.

A lot can be said about the Kundalini. And many things to put right, because the intangible, transcendent nature of the phenomenon has also caused many misunderstandings. In this article I would like to show you that kundalini is not just something for yogis, monks and ascetics, but that we are all called to pursue this path, sooner or later, and that almost all world religions are founded on a kundalini awakening of their prophets.

The energetic process

The ida nadi and pingala nadi are two important energy channels, at the left and right side of our spine. They are, as it were, the energetic blueprint of the duality in our body. They represent the polarities, similar to yin and yang from Taoism.

Where ida nadi is connected to the feminine, dark, cold, passivity, the moon, and feeling, pingala nadi is connected to the masculine, light, heat, activity, the sun, and thinking. Note: these are archetypal contrasts that are not related to the sex of an individual! Every person has an ida and pingala nadi, and therefore a masculine and feminine side.

When the kundalini awakens and ascends through the sushumna – the energy channel that runs through the spine – to the crown chakra, all other chakras along the spine are purified and activated.

At the sixth chakra, the ida and pingala nadi merge, and the so-called “third eye” on the forehead of the spiritual aspirant, is opened. This union of the inner masculine and feminine also leads to the opening of the crown chakra: the mystical marriage of man and his Creator takes place.

A schematic representation of the kundalini process

Universal symbolism

The serpent is a universal metaphor for this divine energy. The Sanskrit word kundalini comes from the Yoga tradition and means ‘curled up’, referring to a serpent lying curled up when sleeping. The image of a serpent, with its ability to renew itself by shedding its skin, also reflects the transformative and healing aspect of the kundalini.

The symbol of healthcare organizations and medical practice is derived from the caduceus, the staff of the Greek god Hermes. The caduceus is also the universal symbol of a kundalini awakening. The staff itself represents the spine, the two serpents are the polar energy channels that merge during an awakening, and the wings symbolise an expanded consiousness. Few doctors will realize that their logo expresses the healing effect of the kundalini energy.

Other symbols for the kundalini include fire, a river, a fountain and a white dove.

Symbols used for the spine through which the awakened energy flows include a tree, a bush, a stick, a scepter, a wand and a ladder.

Buddhism

The official teachings of the Buddha do not refer to the kundalini. But also not to chakras, nadis or any other energetic principle. The original Buddhism is mainly a philosophy with doctrines about a correct mindset.

The Buddha lived in the religious environment of Hinduism and its worship of gods. He saw that man was not happy and has formulated a doctrine with which to overcome suffering. The core of its message is that the ego is an illusion that must be seen through to be delivered from suffering and to realize nirvana.

He thereby placed nirvana as a possibility in the here and now and not after death somewhere in another dimension. To achieve this it is necessary that man let go of his attachment to all kinds of rituals, (energy) systems and gods, which tend to maintain the ego.

The Buddha has neither confirmed nor denied the existence of a God or gods. He brought learning principles that were necessary for man at that time and in that culture to transcend the personal, and experience the underlying oneness of creation. However, we may assume that he himself experienced a kundalini awakening. Indications for this can be found in buddhist myth and iconography.

The legend about the serpent Mucalinda for example. After his enlightenment, meditating under the Bodhi tree, the Buddha is said to have been protected from a violent storm by the cobra Mucalinda, who rose from the roots of the tree behind him and spread his hood above him.

It is not difficult to filter out kundalini symbolism from this story. The tree represents the spine of the Buddha himself, and the cobra is the “serpent energy” that flows up through the sushumna channel.

On some images we see a seven-headed cobra rising behind the Buddha. These seven serpent heads represent the seven main chakras that are located along the spine. In the Yoga tradition, the number of serpent heads refers to the spiritual level of a yogi: the number of purified and opened chakras. Seven represents a completed process.

This story also makes clear what the result is of a kundalini purification process. The violent storm that arises is a metaphor for overwhelming emotions. According to this legend the Buddha still has emotions, but he is no longer affected by them. While the storm rages around him, he sits dry and out of the wind under the hood of the cobra. From an inner place of silence and detachment he perceives these emotions and leaves them for what they are.

This stability and imperturbability can partly be achieved through meditation, but the kundalini process also contributes to this. Sadness, anger and fears that were still present in the subconscious have been “cleared up”. There is no old pain left that can be touched by events in the present. Worn thought patterns and beliefs have been “erased”. Shadow aspects have been brought to light and integrated; there is no material to project onto others. The tendency to judge has disappeared.

The ego has become feather light and transparent. It is therefore easy to step out of the ego and perceive the emotions that remain from a witness position. Letting them rise and ebb, just like the thoughts. So enlightenment does not mean that one no  longer has emotions. The above story is clear on this: Mucalinda does not temper the storm, he protects the Buddha from the storm!

The proverbial stability and imperturbability of the Buddha can therefore be seen as partly the result of diligent spiritual work, but also partly God-given.

In addition to the classic metaphor of the serpent, we also see kundalini fire on the head of the Buddha in the iconography.

So far as we can now ascertain, the Buddha has not explicitly taught about the kundalini, but he has – most likely drawing from his own experience – left behind a doctrine that provides the basic purity and mindset necessary to awaken the divine cobra in our pelvis from her sleep.

The Eightfold Path of Buddhism contains clear and effective guidelines to dismantle and transcend the ego. Whoever follows this path sincerely and steadily will one day also receive this divine gift.

Judaism

The heart of Judaism is the Torah. In the broadest sense it encompasses all of Jewish laws and teachings. In a more limited sense, it refers to the first five books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. In Christianity, these books are included in the Old Testament, a name that the Jews – of course – do not use.

In the books of Moses the term kundalini is not explicitly mentioned, but many stories are metaphors for aspects of the process of kundalini awakening. Skeptics point out that you can project anything you want on symbolism. In a way, this is true. It is above all the repetition of certain themes, the recurring metaphors, and the correspondence with sacred writings of other religions that convince.

There are several passages in the book of Exodus that indicate that Moses, the most important prophet of Judaism, experienced a kundalini awakening. For example, the moment when Moses receives the command from God to take the Hebrews (Jews) out of Egypt and to bring them to the promised land:

The angel of the LORD appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” (Exodus 3:2-4)

This burning bush from which the voice of God echoes is not outside Moses, but in him. Mentioning the word in the middle of this short text twice is one of the hints that there is a deeper meaning in it. This is the center of Moses: his spine “on fire” with the non-digesting kundalini fire. His awareness that has been expanded through this allows him to receive messages from God.

The interpretation that the bush is really the spine and the sushumna channel of Moses is confirmed by what follows in Exodus 4. Moses first contradicts. He does not feel suitable for the assignment he is given by God. And the Egyptians will never let the Hebrews go, he objects:

Then Moses said, “What if they will not believe me or listen to what I say? For they may say, ‘The LORD has not appeared to you.’” The LORD said to him, “What is that in your hand?” And he said, “A staff.” Then He said, “Throw it on the ground.” So he threw it on the ground, and it became a serpent; and Moses fled from it. But the LORD said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand and grasp it by its tail”—so he stretched out his hand and caught it, and it became a staff in his hand— “that they may believe that the LORD, the God of their fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has appeared to you.”

The LORD furthermore said to him, “Now put your hand into your bosom.” So he put his hand into his bosom, and when he took it out, behold, his hand was leprous like snow. Then He said, “Put your hand into your bosom again.” So he put his hand into his bosom again, and when he took it out of his bosom, behold, it was restored like the rest of his flesh. “If they will not believe you or heed the witness of the first sign, they may believe the witness of the last sign.
(Ex 4:1-8)

The rod of Moses turning into a serpent is an obvious reference to an kundalini awakening. The hand in the bosom also. It sees snow-white with leprosy when it is taken out. The bosom is the heart area. The color white refers to purification. This quote wants to communicate the the heart of Moses is purified. The fact that the – incurable – leprosy disappears again, refers to the healing effect of kundalini.

Islam

Legend has it that Muhammad’s father, Abdulah, had a dream about his then unborn son. He saw how a tree grew out of the child’s back toward the sky. This tree spread a light all over the world. Most Muslims interpret this tree as Islam, the religion founded by the Prophet Mohammed. The light is his teaching and his wisdom that have spread all over the world.

However, the argument for interpreting the tree as kundalini symbolism is reinforced by the description of the heavenly journey (Isra and Meraj) that Mohammed made in adulthood. Several stories of this famous ascension can be found in the Hadith and  Sirah (biographies of the prophet Mohammed), the details of which may differ. The main points boil down to this:

Al-Buraq

In a vision, while he is sleeping, Mohammed is taken by the archangel Gabriel. Seated on Buraq, a white horse-like creature with wings, Muhammad flies through the seven heavens into paradise where he comes face to face with Allah Most High. He gets his revelations and here also sees the beautiful sidratil-muntaha: the lotus tree of the final destination.

The winged white horse on which Mohammed makes his heavenly journey is more often repeated in myths as mounts of gods and prophets. The underlying symbolism is that the rider has purified (white) and sublimated (the wings) his animal powers (the horse). These forces are now at his service and enable him to realize the divine (in himself).

If God wants to communicate with Mohammed, He does not require such a long-winded vision. These images also have to make something clear to us. They contain a message for the serious spiritual seeker, who is able to understand the symbolism.

Translated to Eastern terminology, the story tells us that with the help of the awakened kundalini energy Mohammed travels through the seven chakras (the seven heavens) to the crown chakra (paradise). The completed kundalini process (the lotus tree) allows him to communicate with God.

Islam forbids depicting the prophet. In the sparse paintings that exist, he is often depicted with fire flames around his head or body.

Christianity

The New Testament contains numerous veiled references to aspects of the kundalini process. You could even say that almost all the stories in the Gospels are related to it, sideways or directly. The central message of Jesus of Nazareth was how we can realize the Kingdom of God. According to him, it is not outside us (‘here or there’, Luke 17: 20,21) but in us.

In one of his more famous statements, he compares the Kingdom of God to a mustard seed that becomes a tree:

He presented another parable to them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field; and this is smaller than all other seeds, but when it is full grown, it is larger than the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.” He spoke another parable to them, “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven, which a woman took and hid in three pecks of flour until it was all leavened.”
(Matthew 13:31-33)

The alchemists knew that Jesus had gone through a process of kundalini awakening. They translated this into alchemical metaphors. (Ars Magna lucis et umbrae, Athanasius Kircher, 1646)

A mustard seed grows into a plant, not a tree. It is a large plant, but certainly not with branches in which birds can make nests. However, Jesus is not mistaken here, he uses the word tree on purpose. The hidden symbolism is that of a little divine seed (the dormant kundalini energy) that contains a tremendous vital force; it can become the Tree of Life (symbol of a completed kundalini process) if it is sown in the field (in man).

In this context, the birds symbolize our thoughts. Birds that nest, calm down. Jesus thus creates an image of the inner silence and peace that man experiences after a kundalini awakening.

The parable of the sourdough, that follows immediately afterwards, also refers to the activity of the kundalini. In order to enter the Kingdom of God, the whole person must be purified. The sourdough is the kundalini. The three measures of flour represent the body, the heart (emotions) and the head (thoughts), which are completely imbued with the divine powers. This initiates a transformation process from dough to bread; a rebirth of man in God.

The sacred fire of the kundalini burned in Jesus in its full intensity and he had the mastery to initiate others in it. John the Baptist says of him:

“As for me, I baptize you with water for repentance, but He who is coming after me is mightier than I, and I am not fit to remove His sandals; He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. “His winnowing fork is in His hand, and He will thoroughly clear His threshing floor; and He will gather His wheat into the barn, but He will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.”
(Matthew 3:11-12)

In the Gospel of John, the following statement is found of Jesus:

Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified. (John 7:37-39)

A promise that has been interpreted in many ways by exegetes. Where we usually have to take statements of Jesus figuratively, we may now take it literally, if we replace living water with kundalini energy. The Greek word koilias, here translated as innermost being, means belly.

The evangelist himself makes a connection with the Holy Spirit. Although the Holy Spirit is invariably described in the Bible as the divine descending upon man, there are many arguments for interpreting it as the ascending kundalini.

There are many more references in the Gospels to the divine in us, “for those who have ears and want to hear.” One last beautiful and telling quote from the Gospel of John in which Jesus says to a Samaritan woman sitting by a well:

“Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again; but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”
(John 4:13-14)

An alchemical illustration with Mary as Sophia (personification of the divine kundalini energy), under the cross of her son. A reference to the kundalini process of Jesus. (Buch der saints Dreifaltigkeit, 15th century)

Conclusion

We all have the potential to realise the divine, with the help of a very powerful energy source in our pelvis. The Buddha, Moses, Mohammed and Jesus of Nazareth experienced a kundalini awakening, but have chosen not to speak directly about it. Their doctrine of purity, love and mercy does lay the foundation to awaken the holy serpent.

This article was published in Mantra magazine (March ’15)
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2015

Anne-Marie is the author of the book:
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

By |2020-05-03T10:17:25+00:00April 17th, 2020|Mantra, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Tarot 8. Justice

8. Justice

It is a familiar image in court buildings: Lady Justice, the personification of the law; a stern looking woman with a sword and scales. Her Greek origin is the goddess Themis, whose task it was to guard the divine order and laws. This divine order made it possible for the gods and people to live together. Themis’ scales stood for inner balance. The tarot card Justice is also about inner balance; an important prerequisite for spiritual awakening.

The John Adams Courthouse, built in 1893, Boston, Massachusetts.

Justice is one of the four so-called cardinal virtues. She owes her place in the tarot to this. The four virtues of prudentia (prudence, wisdom), justitia (justice), fortitudo (courage, strength) and temperantia (moderation, self-control) are considered extra important in Christianity, because other virtues rely on it (cardinal means “pivotal”, based on the Latin cardo: hinge).

Noteworthy, is that the cardinal virtues, both in and outside the tarot, are almost always personified by women. The reason for this can be found in the book of Wisdom from the Old Testament. In this book these four virtues are mentioned as the result of the divine “Wisdom” (Greek: Sophia), which underlies creation:

…her [Wisdom] labours have great virtues: for she teacheth temperance, and prudence, and justice, and fortitude, which are such things as men can have nothing more profitable in life.
(Wisdom 8:7)

Sophia (Wisdom) is one of the names of God the Mother; the feminine aspect of God, which is found in the human pelvis as well as in all of creation. The yogi calls her the kundalini-shakti. This is – of course – not how the church explains Sophia, but this meaning can be inferred from the Bible texts if they are read with esoteric glasses. Another quote from the Book of Wisdom:

For wisdom [Sophia] is more mobile than any motion; because of her pureness she pervades and penetrates all things. For she is a breath of the power of God, and a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty; therefore nothing defiled gains entrance into her. For she is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of the working of God, and an image of his goodness. Though she is but one, she can do all things, and while remaining in herself, she renews all things; in every generation she passes into holy souls and makes them friends of God, and prophets…
(Wisdom 7: 24-27)

We find Sophia – disguised – on many tarot cards. Not only as a personification of the cardinal virtues, but also as, for instance, the High Priestess.

The Visconti-Sforza Tarot

The Justice card from the 15th century Visconti-Sforza deck seems straightforward in meaning. But this is misleading; the card does contain subtle esoteric symbolism!

Before the sacred marriage can take place at the sixth chakra, the first five chakras must be purified, and the two energy channels that flow along the spine – and that form the energetic blueprint of duality in man – must be balanced. This is what the Justice card stands for. The sword symbolizes the purifying effect of the kundalini (Sophia) and the scales represent the energetic balance.

The Visconti-Sforza Tarot (15th century)

The ‘Sigillum Sapientum’ (Seal of the Wise) of the alchemist. The inner union (hexagram and ouroboros) takes place as a result of the inner working of the divine Sophia (woman with sword and scales). Source: JM Faust, Philalethes Illustratus, 1706.

The Damsel of Swords card of the Visconti di Modrone deck. With her left hand the woman makes the sign of the sacred marriage. A pomegranate pattern is printed on her dress. Both the sword and the pomegranate are a symbol of the kundalini energy.

The symbolic meaning of a sword, with regard to spiritual awakening, is confirmed by a number of other Visconti cards, including the Damsel of Swords card (above). The woman makes the sign of the sacred marriage with her left hand: the inner polarity has merged to unity as a result of the action of the sword / kundalini.

An example outside the tarot is the photograph at the top of this page, of the Boston courthouse. Lady Justice holds a sword with two spiraling serpents: a reference to the caduceus, the classic symbol of a kundalini awakening.

The woman on the Visconti card Justice is wearing a dress with a hexagonal pattern. This is a reference to the hexagram (six-pointed star); the universal symbol for the merger of the polarities. With the hand with which the woman holds the scales, she is making the sign of the sacred marriage. The scales have different colors: gold and silver. This is a reference to the polar energies of sun (gold) and moon (silver), that have been balanced.

On the upper half of the card we see the same woman in armor, riding a white horse, and holding a raised sword. This is a metaphor for the purifying effect of Sophia / the kundalini-shakti. A white horse stands for purified animal drives. Both the woman’s armor and the metal plate on the horse’s head are in two colors: one half is gold and the other half is silver.

Undoubtedly, this image of a combative woman on a horse was inspired by the French Jeanne ‘d Arc, who was executed some twenty years before the appearance of this tarot deck.

An alchemical image with Sophia, standing on the moon (16th century, National Museum of Prague). In her opened abdomen we see a sword with a (kundalini) serpent. With her left hand she makes the sign of the sacred marriage.

The hindu goddess Durga fights a (inner) demon (1775-1800).

The archangel Michael also has a sword and a pair of scales as his attributes. In Christian iconography he conquers the dragon (satan) with these attributes. This battle is mentioned in the Bible Book of Revelation (verse 12: 7): “Michael and his angels fought the dragon.” The symbolic meaning of this battle is the same as what the tarot card Justice wants to convey. The angel Michael represents the divine (kundalini) energy in our pelvis that, once awakened, goes to war against our inner dragon (the animal), and balances our polar energies.

The Tarot of Marseille

The Tarot of Marseille is a collective name for tarot decks that have been designed and produced by different people, in a specific period, in a specific geographical area. The various versions are similar in style and are easily recognizable as ‘Marseille decks’. For the tarot researcher, the differences between the decks are particularly interesting.

That the woman on the card is Sophia / the kundalini-shakti can be deduced from her multicolored dress. At the time, printing was still in its infancy. With the limited color spectrum that the designers had available, they tried to incorporate all chakra colors into the dress.

The braided necklace refers to the two polar energy channels that merge during a kundalini awakening. The woman’s curly hair strands represent the same. On both cards one lock of hair touches the necklace, to indicate that they have the same meaning.

Tarot of Marseille,
Pierre Madenié (1709)

Tarot of Marseille,
Payen-Webb (18th century)

We also see this symbolic hairstyle in Orthodox (Hasidic) Judaism. The men wear curled strands of hair on both sides of the head. These so-called peies grow at the height of the temples, the place where the two energy channels merge during the sacred marriage.

The jewel on the front of the crown refers to the pineal gland, which is activated during a kundalini awakening. On the Payen Webb card, the woman has wings to emphasize her divinity. On the card of Pierre Madenié she sits between two pillars. These represent the two polar energy channels.

In esoteric traditions, the three energy channels involved in a kundalini awakening are often represented by pillars.

Remarkably, the designer of the Payen-Webb deck has given the card a different name: La Balance (Balance). This confirms the esoteric meaning of inner balance.

The Tarot of Paris (17th century)

The Tarot of Paris takes a slightly different approach, making the symbolic meaning of the Justice card even clearer. The figure has a head with a masculine and feminine face.

Not only in the tarot, but also in other art forms, as Christian paintings en sculptures, artists attempted to communicate knowledge on the spiritual process of awakening, that went against the teachings of the church. These are three examples of kundalini symbolism on engravings of the cardinal virtue Justice.
From left to right:
1. The woman holds her sword in the middle of the scales, creating the symbolism of three energy channels (1593).
2. The woman sticks out the middle finger of her left hand. The middle finger represents the awakened spine, in esoteric symbolism (Jacob Matham, 17th century).
3. The woman holds the scales in front of a pillar, creating the symbolism of three energy channels (Lucas van Leyden, 1530, Rijksmuseum)

Oswald Wirth and Rider-Waite-Smith

The occultists of the Golden Dawn have not added many new elements to the card. On the Oswald Wirth card, the braided necklace of the woman is larger, and thus more emphasized.

Arthur Waite has swapped the cards Justice and Strenght: Justice has number 11 on his deck. The crown at both Wirth and Waite has three points; a reference to the three energy channels. The two ribbons on the mantle on the RWS card have the same meaning as the two pillars. There is a letter Y pattern on these ribbons. This letter symbolizes the fusion of the opposites. The androgynous appearance of the woman, as well as the visibility of only one shoe, also refers to this. She holds the sword and the scales right in front of the two pillars: she purifies and balances these two pillars / energy channels.

Oswald Wirth Tarot, 1930

Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot (1909)

The handle of her sword displays the symbol for gold (a circle with a dot in the middle): a reference to the divine energy that this sword represents. Like the card of the High Priestess, the curtain between the pillars is the veil of Isis: the veil behind which Isis / Sophia hides the greater reality.

Château des Avenières

On the mosaic in the chapel of Château des Avenières the two pillars are marked with the letters B and J. An element we know from the High Priestess card of the RWS deck. The letters stand for Boaz and Jachin: the names of the bronze columns at the entrance of King Solomon’s temple. According to the Old Testament, this entrance leads to the Arc of the Covenant in the Holy of Holies, where man can communicate with God.

The temple represents man himself, the pillars are the polar energy channels on both sides of the spine, and the entrance is located on the bottom the spine, in the pelvis. The Arc of the Covenant is in the head of man: the pineal gland and pituitary gland are activated by the risen kundalini (Sophia).

A uraeus-cobra is placed on the woman’s small crown: the serpent that represented the kundalini in ancient Egypt, and with which pharaohs were often depicted.

The mosaic of Château des Avenières (1917)

A model of the temple of Solomon

Conclusion

The tarot uses well-known archetypes to translate these into aspects of spiritual awakening. The Justice card shows Sophia in her role of divine Mother. Everything that stands between us and her husband, God the Father, she removes with her sword. Not always painless, but with good intentions and love, like a real mother. Our interior is purified and balanced by her.

These spiritual tasks are similar to the role of Lady Justice (the Judiciary) in the outside world: “cleansing” society of what disrupts harmony, and imposing punishments proportional to the offenses committed, to restore balance.

A statue of the cardinal virtue of Justice on the roof of the Palace on the Dam in Amsterdam (sculptor Artus Quellinus, 17th century). This statue also displays esoteric symbolism: instead of a sword, the woman holds a scepter (symbol of the spine) with a sun at the top, and the all-seeing Eye of God. The scepter is placed on her pelvis, at the height of the sacrum, the resting place of the kundalini, and the Eye of God is at the height of the pineal gland.

78 Tarot Astral
(2017) 
www.78tarot.cards

A beautiful card with the kundalini serpent holding the scales. The tip of the sword is placed between the eyes, aimed at the pineal gland.

Cosmic Tarot
(Norbert Lösche, 1988)

Lady Justice as ‘the middle pillar’.

The Star Tarot
(Cathy McClelland, 2017) www.cathymcclelland.com

Many relevant kundalini symbols that have been combined in a creative way: three trees, running water, the eclipse (union of sun and moon), peacock feathers, and the the forehead as the spot where the polarities merge.

The Raziel Tarot
(Robert M. Place, 2016)
 
www.robertmplacetarot.com

In mystical Judaism, the Shekinah (the woman between the pillars) is the indwelling divine, or Sophia / the kundalini-shakti.

This artikel was published in Paravisie Magazine (sept ’19). Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2019

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Illustrations from the tarot decks, reproduced by permission of U.S. Games Systems, Inc., Stamford, CT 06902. c. by U.S. Games Systems, Inc.  All rights reserved.
Foto’s Châteaux de Avenières: http://hermetism.free.fr/Avenieres

0. The Fool
1. The Magician
2. The High Priestess
3. The Empress
4. The Emperor
5. The Hierophant
6. The Lovers
7. The Chariot
8. Justice
9. The Hermit
10. The Wheel of Fortune
11. Strength
12. The Hanged Man
13. Death

By |2020-04-13T15:52:43+00:00January 24th, 2020|Anne-Marie, Paravisie, Tarot|Comments Off on Tarot 8. Justice

Snow White and the Seven Chakras

Snow White and the Seven Chakras

Not many people realize that the bedtime stories that our parents read to us when they wanted us to fall asleep were actually supposed to wake us up. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Little Red Riding Hood, all those centuries old stories are metaphors for a spiritual awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God.

Even less people are aware that the symbolism of these fairy tales usually refers to the kundalini-energy, the mysterious primal force that “slumbers” in our pelvis, and which nowadays is commonly associated with eastern traditions. But also our western mythology, legends and folklore incorporate very often kundalini-symbolism.

Let’s, for instance, have a look at a story that everybody knows: Snow White. Her name refers to the working of kundalini-energy: the purification of a person at the physical, spiritual and emotional levels. Only with a pure heart may we enter through the gates of the Kingdom of God.

The evil stepmother

When Snow White is born, her mother, the queen, dies. Her father remarries, but with a nasty woman who envies Snow White’s beauty. She concocts a plan to kill her. The “evil stepmother” occurs in many fairy tales. She represents the “material world,” which isn’t our real “mother.” An interesting fact is that the word “material” derives from the Latin word for mother: mater. Our real home is in the divine dimensions. The human who incarnates on earth is an “orphan” under the control of the “stepmother” who has her own (egoistic) agenda.

The seven dwarfs

The evil queen orders a hunter to kill Snow White. But he is unable to go through with it and abandons her in the dark forest. Lost and alone she wanders about until she finds the house of the seven dwarfs:

She saw a little house and went inside in order to rest. Inside the house everything was small, but so neat and clean that no one could say otherwise. There was a little table with a white tablecloth and seven little plates, and each plate had a spoon, and there were seven knives and forks and seven mugs as well. Against the wall there were seven little beds, all standing in a row and covered with snow-white sheets.
Because she was so hungry and thirsty Snow-White ate a few vegetables and a little bread from each little plate, and from each mug she drank a drop of wine. Afterward, because she was so tired, she lay down on a bed, but none of them felt right — one was too long, the other too short — until finally the seventh one was just right. She remained lying in it, entrusted herself to God, and fell asleep.

The seven dwarfs represent the seven most important chakras of our body. Snow White who eats of all seven plates and drinks from all seven mugs is a depiction of the kundalini-energy which flows through our spinal cord past these seven chakras. The round shape of the plates and mugs corresponds beautifully to the “wheel-shape” of chakras. Then the tale shows how the kundalini withdraws in the pelvis, at the lowest chakra. This is the seventh bed in which Snow White goes to sleep.

She is allowed to live with the dwarfs in exchange for cleaning the house (kundalini-purification) while they go out into the mountains to dig for gold (i.e. God) during the day. But her peaceful existence is short lived. The evil queen learns that Snow White is still alive and heads out to kill her yet. The story now teaches us that vanity – one of the qualities of the ego – keeps the kundalini “asleep.” Whoever is focused on him- or herself and the enticements of the material world gains no access to the divine.

The poisonous apple

Disguised as an old peddler woman, the queen seduces Snow White into buying a waistband, which she subsequently straps so tight (“wanting to be slim”) that her breath fails her and she falls to the earth “as if dead.” But when the dwarfs come home they revive Snow White by releasing the waistband. Then the queen tries it using a poisonous comb (“wanting to be pretty”), which causes Snow White to collapse. Again the dwarfs manage to bring the girl back to consciousness. The third attempt of the wicked stepmother is successful. This time she uses a poisonous apple:

“From the outside it was beautiful, white with red cheeks, and anyone who saw it would want it. But anyone who might eat a little piece of it would die.”

The apple refers to the Biblical story of Adam and Eve. This “forbidden fruit” symbolizes the sensual temptations of “the world.” After they eat of it, Adam and Eve are driven out of Paradise (i.e. the connection with the divine is severed).

The glass coffin

The dwarfs place the (seemingly) dead Snow White in a glass coffin:

“Snow-White lay there in the coffin a long, long time, and she did not decay, but looked like she was asleep.”

Within most people the divine may lead a slumbering existence but can never die, tells us this image. In our pelvis, near the sacrum, the kundalini patiently awaits until the spiritual seeker is ready to embark on the long journey of purification and healing. She awakens by herself in whoever leads a God-centered life, despite his or her religious conviction or culture, to help create the right circumstances for the “sacred marriage”: a merger of the internal masculine and feminine, after which a unification of the person with his Creator occurs.

In the story a prince appears who falls in love with Snow White. This occasion marks the beginning of the phase of kundalini-awakening. He takes her with him, coffin and all:

“The prince had his servants carry it away on their shoulders. But then it happened that one of them stumbled on some brush, and this dislodged from Snow-White’s throat the piece of poisoned apple that she had bitten off.”

The brush symbolizes the spinal column through which the kundalini flows up to the crown chakra. The glass coffin in which Snow White lies depicts a “transparent” ego, which has been purified by the kundalini-energy.
Joyfully, the prince asks the awakened Snow White to marry him:

“I love you more than anything else in the world. Come with me to my father’s castle. You shall become my wife.”

The castle of the father (the Father) of the prince symbolizes the Kingdom of God: the abode of the person who loves the divine more than “anything else in the world.”

The red-hot shoes

Beautiful is the closing symbolism of the fate of the evil queen. When she appears at the wedding of Snow White and the prince, a nasty surprise awaits her:

Then they put a pair of iron shoes into burning coals. They were brought forth with tongs and placed before her. She was forced to step into the red-hot shoes and dance until she fell down dead.

The dancing queen is a metaphor for internal kundalini-activity. The working of this energy is commonly depicted as a dance. The mother goddess Kali from Hinduism, for instance, which also symbolizes the kundalini, is usually depicted dancing.

Around her neck she wears a necklace of bloody severed heads; trophies of all egos which she has destroyed with her gyrating arms and legs.

The red-hot shoes which the queen is made to wear refer to the purifying effect of the kundalini-fire. Her death represents the death of the ego that is focused on the material; an event that is inseparably connected to the sacred marriage.

Alchemy

The fairy tale of Snow White invites us to take the path of inner transformation – the way of the tenacious alchemist who in his solitary laboratory tries to transform lead into gold. It’s a metaphor for the process of spiritual growth during which the earthly within the person is transformed into the divine. In its description of Snow White, the story subtly refers to the tradition of alchemy: a complexion white as snow, lips red as blood and hair black as ebony wood.

Nigredo (black), albedo (white) and rubedo (red) are the three phases of the alchemic process. Nigredo, the first phase, occurs when the world has lost its shine and a process of deconstruction of the “old person” begins. In the story of Snow White this phase is imaged by the fearful wandering of the girl in the dark forest, searching for a new house. Albedo is the phase of purification. This process is symbolized by Snow White’s cleaning of the house of the seven dwarfs (chakras), when they are in the mountains looking for gold. In the final phase, rubedo, the merger of opposites transpires, which in the story is depicted by the marriage of Snow White and the prince.

Mirror, mirror, on the wall…

What this fairy tale is telling us, via the magic mirror of the evil queen, is: don’t concern yourself with your exterior but rather focus on your internal world, because what lies hidden therein is thousands of times more beautiful than all the other on earth!

This article was published in Paravisie Magazine.
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2017

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Legends, myths and fairy tales

In spiritual traditions, the direct knowledge of the divine energy in our pelvis was shared only with a select group of initiated. The rest of humanity had to work their way through the veil of metaphor and symbolism in legends, myths, fairy tales and other folk stories, to obtain this information.

Not many people realize that the classic fairy tales we know so well, often refer to our potential for spiritual rebirth. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel; all those timeless stories are metaphors for the process of kundalini awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God

By clicking on the following fairy tales you will find an analysis of the story by Anne-Marie:

SNOW WHITE
CINDERELLA
BLUE BEARD
SLEEPING BEAUTY
THE FROG KING

By |2020-02-21T11:40:13+00:00November 30th, 2017|Anne-Marie, Paravisie|Comments Off on Snow White and the Seven Chakras

The Glass Slipper of Cinderella

The Glass Slipper of Cinderella

The fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm which we all know so well – Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty – were not invented by the two brothers but are ancient folk tales which they merely submitted to writing. These are stories which commonly also circulated in other parts of the world, sometimes in a somewhat different form, but with strikingly abundant similar symbolism. From this we may deduce that we are dealing with esoteric knowledge, which throughout all cultures and times has existed in an underground fashion, and which was passed on via folk tales.

I suspect that the Grimm brothers have not been aware that many of the fairy tales which made it into their books are about a kundalini-awakening; a term that hadn’t yet been introduced to the western world in the 19th century. Like Snow White, the story of Cinderella is about spiritual transformation with this mysterious energy source in the lead role.

The tree, the dove, the fire and the marriage

This story makes use of a number of universal symbols which are used time and again when the kundalini-process is expressed in images: the tree, the white dove, the fire and the marriage. The tree symbolizes the spinal column via which the divine energy (fire) flows from the pelvis to the crown. The dove symbolizes a completed process. The marriage represents the merger of the masculine and the feminine within a person into a unity, at the level of the sixth chakra, because of which the door to the divine opens.

We see these images – in a stylized form – also in the caduceus, the classic kundalini symbol of Greek mythology. The staff of the caduceus represents a person’s spinal column and the two wings the expansion of consciousness which is the result of a kundalini-awakening. The two serpents represent the two energy channels in our body, which connect us to the duality, including the masculine and the feminine (yin and yang in Taoism). The merger of these energy channels at the level of the forehead is called the sacred marriage.

Let’s have a look how all this plays out in the story of Cinderella. Just as in the story of Snow White, the mother of Cinderella dies and her father remarries a true wretch. In fairy tales the evil stepmother usually represents the “material world.” This interpretation is confirmed by the etymology (the origin of the word): the word “material” comes from the Latin word mater and means mother. We are born here on earth, but our true home is in the divine dimensions, is the underlying message of this story.

Sleeping near the hearth

The stepmother locks Cinderella in the kitchen where she is forced to perform heavy labor:

In the evening when she had worked herself weary, there was no bed for her. Instead she had to sleep by the hearth in the ashes. And because she always looked dusty and dirty, they called her Cinderella.

The literal meaning of her original German name Aschenputtel is “she who blows into the ash to reignite the fire.” It’s a beautiful and striking name that puts us on the right track to the deeper meaning of the story. The hearth is the smoldering kundalini fire in our pelvis.

The image of the incarcerated Cinderella, sleeping by the smoldering hearth, symbolizes the kundalini-energy which no longer flows freely through our spinal column but “sleeps” at the level of the sacrum, as a consequence of our incarnation on earth.

The mean stepsisters

Cinderella has two stepsisters. They represent the two energy channels (nadis) in our body, which are called ida-nadi and pingala-nadi in the Yoga tradition, and which let us experience the material world and its duality. “They were beautiful, with fair faces, but evil and dark hearts,” tells us the story. A life focused on material things may seem beautiful on the outside but is soulless and empty.

The branch and the hat

Daily Cinderella goes to the grave of her mother and weeps bitter tears because she is so unhappy.

One day it happened that the father was going to the fair, and he asked his two stepdaughters what he should bring back for them. “Beautiful dresses,” said the one. “Pearls and jewels,” said the other. “And you, Cinderella,” he said, “what do you want?” “Father, break off for me the first twig that brushes against your hat on your way home.” So he bought beautiful dresses, pearls, and jewels for his two stepdaughters. On his way home, as he was riding through a green thicket, a hazel twig brushed against him and knocked off his hat. Then he broke off the twig and took it with him. Arriving home, he gave his stepdaughters the things that they had asked for, and he gave Cinderella the twig from the hazel bush.
Cinderella thanked him, went to her mother’s grave, and planted the branch on it, and she wept so much that her tears fell upon it and watered it. It grew and became a beautiful tree. Cinderella went to this tree three times every day, and beneath it she wept and prayed. A white bird came to the tree every time, and whenever she expressed a wish, the bird would throw down to her what she had wished for.

Beautiful how the tree as metaphor for the kundalini process is worked into the story! Cinderella asks for a gift the branch that brushes against her father’s hat, a reference to the “kundalini-tree” which grows in our head. The hat which is knocked off represents the opening of the crown chakra.

Cinderella plants the branch on the grave of her mother. Many traditions view the kundalini-energy as feminine; as a goddess, or as “God the Mother.” Our pelvis is the grave in which this energy lies “buried.” Because of the tears of the mourning girl, the tree begins to grow. What is required to awaken the kundalini is a sincere longing for God; homesickness for the place from whence we came. Sorrow due to life on earth – however bitter this may seem – is nutrition for the kundalini-tree.

The white bird in the tree represents a completed process. Everything Cinderella asks for the bird throws down; we receive whatever our hearts desire when we persevere and accomplish the process of transformation until the complete end.

The king’s son

Also the story’s ultimate marriage to the prince is filled with beautiful symbolism. Cinderella wants to attend the ball which the king organizes in order to find a bride for his son. But she is only allowed to come along when she has extracted the lentils from the ashes that her stepmother has thrown in. Cinderella implores the birds to come to her aid:

The girl went through the back door into the garden, and called out, “You tame pigeons, you turtledoves, and all you birds beneath the sky, come and help me to gather: The good ones go into the pot, the bad ones go into your crop.” Two white pigeons came in through the kitchen window, and then the turtledoves, and finally all the birds beneath the sky came whirring and swarming in, and lit around the ashes. The pigeons nodded their heads and began to pick, pick, pick, pick. And the others also began to pick, pick, pick, pick. They gathered all the good lentils into the bowl.

Sorting out the “good lentils” refers to the inner purification that is required for the sacred marriage; a purification which is achieved by the kundalini-energy (the birds).

Then the stepmother says that she still can’t go to the ball, because she has no suitable clothes. Cinderella goes to her mother’s grave, where this time again the white bird helps her by throwing down a beautiful gold and silver dress with matching slippers. This dress represents the “garment of light” which is formed under the influence of the kundalini-process. By this imperishable body of light we attain immortality, the ultimate spiritual destination of human beings.

The charmed prince

The prince is rather charmed with Cinderella, but three times (the festival lasts three days) she eludes his attempts to take her home – the first time by climbing in a pigeon coop and the second time by climbing up a pear tree. Both the pigeon coop and the pear tree refer to the spinal column, with the kundalini-energy flowing within. The third time Cinderella escapes the prince she loses one her shoes:

The prince picked it up. It was small and dainty, and of pure gold. The next morning, he went with it to the man, and said to him, “No one shall be my wife except for the one whose foot fits this golden shoe.”

The shoe of Cinderella is supposed to tell us something about her ego: small and of gold. In another version of this tale, recorded by the French author Perrault, the shoe is made from glass. This refers to a “transparent” and purified ego (as does the glass coffin of Snow White).

Who fits the slipper?

The prince sets out in search of she who fits the shoe. The feet of the stepsisters of Cinderella appear to be much too large. One stepsister cuts off her toe and the other her heel to deceive the prince but they are betrayed by the white doves at the grave of Cinderella’s mother: Rook di goo, rook di goo! There’s blood in the shoe. The shoe is too tight, this bride is not right!

When it appears that Cinderella does fit the shoe, the delighted prince takes her along. At that moment two white birds fly toward her and settle on Cinderella’s shoulders: “one on the right, the other on the left, and remained sitting there.” The doves to the left and right of Cinderella’s head symbolize the two wings atop the caduceus: the kundalini-process is completed. The story ends as follows:

When the wedding with the prince was to be held, the two false sisters came, wanting to gain favor with Cinderella and to share her good fortune. When the bridal couple walked into the church, the older sister walked on their right side and the younger on their left side, and the pigeons pecked out one eye from each of them. Afterwards, as they came out of the church, the older one was on the left side, and the younger one on the right side, and then the pigeons pecked out the other eye from each of them. And thus, for their wickedness and falsehood, they were punished with blindness as long as they lived.

During the wedding ceremony the stepsisters position themselves to the left and right of Cinderella. That is supposed to invoke the image of the two energy channels – the ida-nadi and pingala-nadi – which run on both sides of the spinal column. The sisters are blinded by the white doves: the awakened person becomes “blind” for the earthly.

The moral of the story

When the stepmother and stepsisters in us remain in control, Cinderella remains locked in the kitchen. In other words: if we live our lives focused on material things and the desires of the ego, then the kundalini-energy remains asleep near our sacrum.

This article was published in Paravisie Magazine.
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2017

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Legends, myths and fairy tales

In spiritual traditions, the direct knowledge of the divine energy in our pelvis was shared only with a select group of initiated. The rest of humanity had to work their way through the veil of metaphor and symbolism in legends, myths, fairy tales and other folk stories, to obtain this information.

Not many people realize that the classic fairy tales we know so well, often refer to our potential for spiritual rebirth. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel; all those timeless stories are metaphors for the process of kundalini awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God

By clicking on the following fairy tales you will find an analysis of the story by Anne-Marie:

SNOW WHITE
CINDERELLA
BLUE BEARD
SLEEPING BEAUTY
THE FROG KING

By |2020-02-21T11:38:24+00:00November 30th, 2017|Anne-Marie, Paravisie|Comments Off on The Glass Slipper of Cinderella

To find God you must first kiss a frog!

To find God you must first kiss a frog!

Many familiar fairy tales are about a kundalini-awakening. That is remarkable because these recorded folk tales stem from a time at which this Eastern concept had not yet entered the Western collective consciousness. But even though nowadays the kundalini has become part of spiritual jargon, particularly because of an increased interest in yoga, this mysterious source of energy is still largely regarded as something exotic and pertaining to the ascetic yogi who performs complicated exercises (kriyas) in order to awaken this serpentine force in his pelvis.

Who develops an eye for it will begin to see that the holy writings and iconography of virtually all religions and spiritual traditions contain references – usually cryptic – to a divine fire in our pelvis (near the “sacrum,” or sacred bone!). These clues that were left by initiated and mystics add up to the message that at our incarnation into the material world we were given a divine pilot light, which can lead a person to a next step in the evolution, when brought to ignition; a possibility to the broadening of our consciousness that exceeds our imaginations, a potential of immortality.

Special exercises are generally not required to awaken the kundalini. Much more important is a pure lifestyle and a sincere desire for God. And a willingness to face whatever is stored in the subconscious. This latter is what the familiar story of the frog prince discusses.

The golden ball

The story begins with a princess who drops her golden ball into the water:

In the vicinity of the king’s castle there was a large, dark forest, and in this forest, beneath an old linden tree, there was a well. In the heat of the day the princess would go out into the forest and sit on the edge of the cool well. To pass the time she would take a golden ball, throw it into the air, and then catch it. It was her favorite plaything. Now one day it happened that the princess’s golden ball did not fall into her hands, that she held up high, but instead it fell to the ground and rolled right into the water.

All elements of this fragment point toward kundalini-energy. The tree is the quintessential symbol for the spinal column through which the awakened kundalini flows up to the crown. The water well beneath the tree represents the divine energy itself. The golden ball which the king’s daughter throws in the air near the well depicts the rising motion of the kundalini. Both the circular form and the gold of the ball refer to the divine.

The princess drops the ball and it disappears beneath the water; the kundalini-energy withdraws into the pelvis. She cries bitter tears and is inconsolable. Then from the water emerges a frog, which offers to help her. But he wants something in return:

The frog answered, “I do not want your clothes, your pearls and precious stones, nor your golden crown, but if you will love me and accept me as a companion and playmate, and let me sit next to you at your table and eat from your golden plate and drink from your cup and sleep in your bed, if you will promise this to me, then I’ll dive down and bring your golden ball back to you.” “Oh, yes,” she said, “I promise all of that to you if you will just bring the ball back to me.”

Kikkerkoning

The princess, however, does not keep her promise. When she has her ball back she abandons the frog at the well. The next day he knocks on the door of the palace but the princess won’t let him in. When the king learns what has happened he instructs his daughter to keep her promise. Reluctantly she opens the door for the frog.

The animalistic within a human being

The frog represents all the qualities, proclivities and urges that we prefer to deny we have. Commonly these are aspects of our animalistic nature; think of aggression, jealousy, greed, lust and egoism. An often reoccurring central theme of all writing on the kundalini-mystery is the victory over animalistic instincts and the rerouting of these energies toward the realization of our divine potential.

Kikkerkoning

One of the pitfalls on the spiritual path is to deny or suppress urges which don’t match the ideal image we have of someone who is holy or enlightened. These energies of our “lower” or earthly nature, when purified and sublimated, can actually help us realize the higher. Better yet: without these primal forces the gates of the Kingdom of God remain closed. That is what this story wants to show us.

The frog which rises from the water (the subconscious) symbolizes the emerging awareness of these “shadowy” aspects. But awareness alone is not enough. The frog wants to be a playmate to the princess and wants her to love him, or else she won’t get her golden ball back. If we want to find God we must embrace and love our own “unattractive” aspects. The frog also wants to eat from the princess’ plate and sleep in her bed. These are images of integration; the lower nature must be absorbed into the energy of the complete person.

Frog turns to prince

kikkerkoning

She picked him up with two fingers, carried him upstairs, and set him in a corner. As she was lying in bed, he came creeping up to her and said, “I am tired, and I want to sleep as well as you do. Pick me up or I’ll tell your father.”

With that she became bitterly angry and threw him against the wall with all her might. “Now you will have your peace, you disgusting frog!”

But when he fell down, he was not a frog, but a prince with beautiful friendly eyes. And he was now, according to her father’s will, her dear companion and husband. He told her how he had been enchanted by a wicked witch, and that she alone could have rescued him from the well, and that tomorrow they would go together to his kingdom.

Once (integrated) in(to) in the bedroom, the frog changes into an attractive prince, with whom the princess subsequently marries. The marriage represents the unification of the human person with God – the so-called “sacred marriage” – during which the masculine (the prince) and the feminine (the princess) unite within a person.

In the original version of this tale the princess throws the frog against the wall. This was in later versions amended to a more animal-friendly alternative: the princess kisses the frog.

The awakening of the heart

Then follows a beautiful and meaningful finale:

The next morning, just as the sun was waking them, a carriage pulled up, drawn by eight horses. They had white ostrich feathers on their heads and were outfitted with chains of gold. At the rear stood the young king’s servant, faithful Heinrich. Faithful Heinrich had been so saddened by his master’s transformation into a frog that he had had to place three iron bands around his heart to keep it from bursting in grief and sorrow. The carriage was to take the king back to his kingdom. Faithful Heinrich lifted them both inside and took his place at the rear. He was filled with joy over the redemption. After they had gone a short distance, the prince heard a crack from behind, as though something had broken. He turned around and said, “Heinrich, the carriage is breaking apart.”

Kikkerkoning

“No, my lord, the carriage it’s not,
But one of the bands surrounding my heart,
That suffered such great pain,
When you were sitting in the well,
When you were a frog.”

Once again, and then once again the prince heard a cracking sound and thought that the carriage was breaking apart, but it was the bands springing from faithful Heinrich’s heart because his master was now redeemed and happy.

The white horses which bring the lovers to the kingdom of the prince (i.e. God) represent the purified (white) animalistic energies. The ostrich feathers on their heads have the same meaning as the wings of the mythical horse Pegasus: the sublimation (spiritualization) of the earthly. The gold chains with which the horses are hitched refer to the divine.

The driver of the carriage, the faithful Heinrich, refers to the person in whom this transformation takes place. The breaking of the three iron bands around his heart symbolizes the full (three) opening of the heart chakra, when the unification with God takes place. The person is released from his earthly constrictions. A tremendous bliss flows through his being. The spell of the witch (the illusion of the Maya) is broken.

norwegian mythologies

Freya

This fairy tale has clear roots in Norwegian mythology. The linden tree (by the well) from the story has a sacred status in the Celtic and Germanic tradition. The mother-goddess Freya (hence our word “Friday”) was thought to live in this tree. Like many mother-goddesses from other traditions (Kali, Vajrayogini, Aphrodite, Isis, Inanna), Freya personifies the kundalini-energy. She represents the feminine aspect of the one God, living in the spinal column (the linden tree) of a human being.

What doubtlessly played a role in selecting the linden tree is that the seeds of this tree come with an elongated wing that causes them to spin on their way down. It’s the same kind of motion that the kundalini makes on its way up along the spinal column.

According to the myths, Freya wanted at all cost to own a special chain named Brísingamen. To get this chain she had to sleep with four hideous dwarfs who created it. This story line is similar to that of the princess who has to share her bed with a filthy frog.
The four dwarfs too symbolize our earthly (lower) nature: in Norse mythology four dwarfs with the names North, South, East and West, stand on the four corners of the world to support the heavenly ceiling. The precious chain depicts the seven chakras through which the kundalini flows and which the kundalini-energy activates. It’s a beautiful metaphor for a kundalini-awakening!

In the fairy tale the royal carriage is drawn by eight horses. In Norse mythology, the prominent deity Odin moves about on an eight-legged horse named Sleipnir. The eight legs symbolize de merger of two forces (horses): of the masculine energies and the feminine energies into one (kundalini-)superforce.

The moral

The fairy tale of the frog prince aims to demonstrate that the way to God is not a matter of transcending the earthly, but cuts straight through the mire of our human nature. Pseudo-holiness is a big pitfall on this way!

This article was published in Paravisie Magazine.
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2017

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Legends, myths and fairy tales

In spiritual traditions, the direct knowledge of the divine energy in our pelvis was shared only with a select group of initiated. The rest of humanity had to work their way through the veil of metaphor and symbolism in legends, myths, fairy tales and other folk stories, to obtain this information.

Not many people realize that the classic fairy tales we know so well, often refer to our potential for spiritual rebirth. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel; all those timeless stories are metaphors for the process of kundalini awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God

By clicking on the following fairy tales you will find an analysis of the story by Anne-Marie:

SNOW WHITE
CINDERELLA
BLUE BEARD
SLEEPING BEAUTY
THE FROG KING

By |2020-02-21T11:37:11+00:00November 24th, 2017|Anne-Marie, Paravisie|Comments Off on To find God you must first kiss a frog!

The spiritual path, captured in folk tales

The spiritual path, captured in folk tales

(The six dead spouses of Bluebeard)

Many folk tales are about a way back to the place where we come from: the Kingdom of God. In order to return to our true home a number of difficulties must be conquered. Who isn’t careful will be eaten by a witch, an ogre or a big ferocious wolf. Perhaps you have already been eaten?

Hansel and Gretel

The story of Hansel and Gretel is about each of us. The image of a brother and sister, who are abandoned by their parents and get lost in a great dark forest, is a metaphor of a person (internally divided in a masculine and feminine side) who wanders the earth separated from God.

The children face starvation, but just in time they arrive at a shack built from ginger bread, cakes and candy and they immediately begin to nibble. They seem saved but then it appears that they have been lured into a trap by an evil witch who captures them and wants to eat them.

The house of candy represents the lures of this world. Who is singularly focused on earthly pleasures and chooses for sensory delights, the story admonishes, will be ‘captured’ by material things and die in a spiritual sense. Fortunately, the children manage to liberate themselves just in time and with their pockets full of pearls and gems (spiritual wealth) from the house of the witch, they return to their father (i.e. God).

Tom Thumb

Another danger on the spiritual path hides within people themselves. The story of Tom Thumb, a boy the size of a thumb, tells of the adventures of our divine self during our time on earth. Multiple versions of this story exist. In Charles Perrault’s version, Hop-o’-My-Thumb gets into a row with a man-eating ogre, who wants to eat him. In fairy tales, an ogre commonly represents our ego, which compromises our divine nucleus.

Hop-o’-My-Thumb outwits the ogre and purloins his seven-league boots (seven chakras) and treasures. With his pockets and boots full of (divine) gold he returns to his parents (God).
In the version of the Brothers Grimm, Tom Thumb’s life isn’t threatened by an ogre but by a cow and a wolf. He end up in the stomach of the animals but manages to free himself in the nick of time. Ferocious animals are a reoccurring theme in folk tales. They represent in general our lower, animalistic nature which has to be subdued if we want to return to the Kingdom of God.

Being captured in a stomach, as Tom Thumb was, additionally refers to a focus on gratification of the (under)belly. In terms of chakras, this is about the energy of the lower three chakras.

The Wolf and the Seven Young Kids

Also Little Red Riding Hood is eaten by a wolf, just like the seven goat kids, which were emphatically warned by their mother who had to leave on an errant. In both stories the wolf feigns an identity that differs from who he really is. In Little Red Riding Hood he dresses up as the grandmother of the girl. In the story of the seven kids (chakras) he whitens his paws with flour and alters his voice. Because he is not directly recognized as wolf he is able to overcome his victims and devour them.

This depicts not seeing the danger of yielding to our urges and drives. These stories aim to warn us for wasting our life energy (which flows through the seven chakras). We require these primitive forces to realize our higher nature. This is also the theme of the familiar story of the murderous Bluebeard.

Six dead wives in a basement

The new bride of Bluebeard discovers to her horror that her husband keeps the corpses of her six predecessors in a room in the house. A grizzly tale that’s not suited for young children, with the same meaning as the story of the devoured goat kids. The six wives represent the six chakras which are “killed” by animalistic urges: hair (a beard) represents the animalistic. At the seventh chakra (wife) a transformation takes place.

The color blue refers to the spiritual. This story wants to show us that our animalistic forces have to be “spiritualized” (transformed). The imagery that is used to this extent is as hilarious as fitting and symbolize a kundalini awakening. When Bluebeard finds out that his seventh wife has discovered the corpses and wants to kill her too, she asks him for fifteen minutes to pray. Meanwhile she sends her sister Anna to the top of the tower to see whether her two brothers are approaching:

“Sister Anne,” she said, “go up, I beg you, to the top of the tower, and look if my brothers are not coming. They promised me that they would come today, and if you see them, give them a sign to make haste.”

Her sister Anne went up to the top of the tower, and the poor afflicted wife cried out from time to time, “Anne, sister Anne, do you see anyone coming?”

And sister Anne said, “I see nothing but a cloud of dust in the sun, and the green grass.”

In the meanwhile Bluebeard, holding a great saber in his hand, cried out as loud as he could bawl to his wife, “Come down instantly, or I shall come up to you.”

“One moment longer, if you please,” said his wife; and then she cried out very softly, “Anne, sister Anne, do you see anybody coming?” And sister Anne answered, “I see nothing but a cloud of dust in the sun, and the green grass.”
“Come down quickly,” cried Bluebeard, “or I will come up to you.”

“I am coming,” answered his wife; and then she cried, “Anne, sister Anne, do you not see anyone coming?”
“I see,” replied sister Anne, “a great cloud of dust approaching us.”
“Are they my brothers?”
“Alas, no my dear sister, I see a flock of sheep.”
“Will you not come down?” cried Bluebeard.
“One moment longer,” said his wife, and then she cried out, “Anne, sister Anne, do you see nobody coming?”
“I see,” said she, “two horsemen, but they are still a great way off.”

“God be praised,” replied the poor wife joyfully. “They are my brothers. I will make them a sign, as well as I can for them to make haste.”

Then Bluebeard bawled out so loud that he made the whole house tremble. The distressed wife came down, and threw herself at his feet, all in tears, with her hair about her shoulders.

“This means nothing,” said Bluebeard. “You must die!” Then, taking hold of her hair with one hand, and lifting up the sword with the other, he prepared to strike off her head. The poor lady, turning about to him, and looking at him with dying eyes, desired him to afford her one little moment to recollect herself. “No, no,” said he, “commend yourself to God,” and was just ready to strike.

At this very instant there was such a loud knocking at the gate that Bluebeard made a sudden stop. The gate was opened, and two horsemen entered. Drawing their swords, they ran directly to Bluebeard. He knew them to be his wife’s brothers, one a dragoon, the other a musketeer; so that he ran away immediately to save himself; but the two brothers pursued and overtook him before he could get to the steps of the porch. Then they ran their swords through his body and left him dead.

Sister Anne who runs up the steps of the tower represents the kundalini-energy which rises from the pelvis through the spinal column. The two brothers of the woman represent the two energy channels ida- and pingala-nadi, which run along the spinal column. When these two channels merge at the level of the forehead, the ego (Bluebeard) dies and the sacred marriage takes place: man is reunited with his Creator (Bluebeard’s wife obtains all his riches and marries another man).
This story is often explained as a warning for the consequences of curiosity, because all trouble begins when Bluebeard’s wife uses a key that her husband had strictly forbidden her to use: that of the little room at the end of the corridor on the bottom floor.

That the woman can’t control her curiosity is rather a positive aspect of the story. The room at the end of the corridor (spinal column) on the bottom floor (the pelvis) is the place where the kundalini is “imprisoned.” Opening this room symbolizes the beginning of a kundalini-awakening, and all uncanny events that follow are positive images of the process of transformation.

Conclusion

If we want to find God we must relinquish our attachment to material things and sensory gratification. We must recognize the wolf for what it is, a dangerous predator, and not let it into our house. The ego must make way for Tom Thumb. No small task, but the stories are unanimous about what awaits us: great wealth and a long and happy life!

This article was published in Paravisie Magazine.
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2017

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Legends, myths and fairy tales

In spiritual traditions, the direct knowledge of the divine energy in our pelvis was shared only with a select group of initiated. The rest of humanity had to work their way through the veil of metaphor and symbolism in legends, myths, fairy tales and other folk stories, to obtain this information.

Not many people realize that the classic fairy tales we know so well, often refer to our potential for spiritual rebirth. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel; all those timeless stories are metaphors for the process of kundalini awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God

By clicking on the following fairy tales you will find an analysis of the story by Anne-Marie:

SNOW WHITE
CINDERELLA
BLUE BEARD
SLEEPING BEAUTY
THE FROG KING

By |2020-02-21T11:35:55+00:00September 11th, 2017|Anne-Marie, Paravisie|Comments Off on The spiritual path, captured in folk tales

The illegitimate twin of the Sleeping Beauty

The illegitimate twin of the Sleeping Beauty

The fairy tale of the Sleeping Beauty, or Little Brier-Rose, has undergone a remarkable transformation over the centuries. What started out as a story for adults, complete with a rape of the princess while she slept, has been cast into the feel-good variety of the Brothers Grimm, suitable for children. Let’s first have a look at the chastened interpretation of the Grimm Brothers. Then we’ll review the symbolism of the more obscure original.

The storyline is simple and the meaning not difficult to unravel. A young princess pricks herself on a spinning wheel and falls asleep. Everybody in the palace – the king, the queen and the entire entourage – also falls asleep. After a hundred years the Sleeping Beauty is woken with a kiss from a prince. The lovers marry and they live happily ever after.

The royal daughter

A king and his queen represent in fairy tales nearly always the divine: the Kingdom of God, the place where mankind came from and for which our soul ever yearns. We are all called to restore the broken connection with our true home during our life on earth. Fairy tales show us the process of spiritual growth which is required for this.

In our pelvis, at the level of the sacrum, is situated a source of energy of divine origin. Eastern traditions call her the kundalini-shakti, in Jewish mysticism she is called the Shekinah and Christianity speaks of the Holy Spirit. Many spiritual traditions see this energy as the feminine aspect of God. In myths and legends she is often a goddess, queen or princess.

As long as a person is focused on earthly pleasures and satisfying the senses the kundalini-energy will lead a “slumbering” existence. A desire for God and a pure lifestyle causes this energy to awaken, after which an intensive process of purification commences, which ultimately results in a merger of the inner masculine and feminine: the so-called sacred marriage. Then the doors of the Kingdom of God open and the person is reunited with his Maker.

In fairytales we meet the sleeping kundalini-shakti in the form of Snow White who is laying in coma and of Cinderella who is locked up in the kitchen by the smoldering fire. In this fairytale she is depicted as a sleeping princess: Little Brier-Rose.

The spinning wheel

One day the princess wanders about the palace:

She walked around from one place to the next, looking into rooms and chambers as her heart desired. Finally she came to an old tower. She climbed up the narrow, winding stairs and arrived at a small door. In the lock there was a rusty key, and when she turned it the door sprang open. There in a small room sat an old woman with a spindle busily spinning her flax. “Good day, old woman,” said the princess. “What are you doing there?” – “I am spinning,” said the old woman, nodding her head. “What is that thing that is so merrily bouncing about?” asked the girl, taking hold of the spindle, for she too wanted to spin. She had no sooner touched the spindle when the magic curse was fulfilled, and she pricked herself in the finger. The instant that she felt the prick she fell onto a bed that was standing there, and she lay there in a deep sleep.

The tower of the palace symbolizes a person’s spinal column. The winding stairs represent the spiraling motion which the kundalini-energy makes when it awakens and rises. Many traditions depict this as a winding serpent which climbs up the spinal column.

The old woman with the spinning wheel represents “mother time” who spins the “thread of life.” The prick from the spindle is a metaphor for the incarnation of a human being in the material world. The connection with the divine is at that moment severed: the divine princess falls asleep in our pelvis.

The 100 year sleep

When the kundalini sleeps the entire person exists in “sleep mode,” that is a state of spiritual unconsciousness. The story depicts this by having all people and all animals in the castle fall asleep as well. Even the fire in the hearth (i.e. the kundalini-fire) dozes off.

Round about the castle a thorn hedge began to grow, and every year it became higher, until it finally surrounded and covered the entire castle. Finally nothing at all could be seen of it, not even the flag on the roof.

The palace drops from sight: the divine exits the frame of reference. Many princes try to reach the sleeping princess but fail to break through the thorny hedge. This symbolizes that he divine is not easily reobtained. The kundalini awakens only when the time is right, when the spiritual seeker has performed the necessary labor. In the story we see that after precisely 100 years (the number 1 represents the divine), the final of many princes who made an attempt walks effortlessly through the hedge:

When the prince approached the thorn hedge, it was nothing but large, beautiful flowers that separated by themselves, allowing him to pass through without harm, but then behind him closed back into a hedge. In the courtyard he saw the horses and spotted hunting dogs lying there asleep, and on the roof the pigeons, perched with their little heads tucked under their wings. When he walked inside the flies were asleep on the wall, the cook in the kitchen was still holding up his hand as if he wanted to grab the boy, and the maid was sitting in front of the black chicken that was supposed to be plucked. He walked further and saw all the attendants lying asleep in the hall, and above them near the throne the king and the queen were lying. He walked on still further, and it was so quiet that he could hear his own breath. Finally he came to the tower and opened the door to the little room where Little Brier-Rose was sleeping. There she lay and was so beautiful that he could not take his eyes off her. He bent over and gave her a kiss. When he touched her with the kiss Little Brier-Rose opened her eyes, awoke, and looked at him kindly.

The kundalini-symbolism is obvious: high in the tower (the spinal column) the merger of the masculine and feminine (the kiss) takes place, after which the sacred marriage follows:

And then the prince’s marriage to Little Brier-Rose was celebrated with great splendor, and they lived happily until they died.

The X-rated version

The oldest written version of Little Brier-Rose stems from 1632 and was called Sun, Moon and Talia. In this story the father of princess Talia deposits the sleeping body of his daughter in the forest. It’s a rather curious course of events but symbolically it matches seamlessly the interpretation of the fairy tale. The dark forest represents “the world”; the spiritual darkness into which man incarnates.

During a hunt, a nobleman finds the princess and rapes her. Nine months hence she delivers twins, which are named Sun and Moon. This bizarre storyline recounts the energetic process in a person after his birth on earth. Sun and moon represent the two energy channels which are called ida-nadi and pingala-nadi in the Yoga tradition. These energy channels run along our spinal column and represent the duality within a person: the masculine and feminine, warm and cold, light and dark, and so on. The sun and the moon (the active and the passive) are two classical symbols which express this duality.

Forest fairies place the twins at Talia’s breasts. This image depicts how the kundalini-energy flows away via the ida- and pingala-nadi, instead of rising up through the spinal column, hence keeping the person captured within duality

But now too all ends well. When after a few months the nobleman returns to the forest to have his way with Talia once more, he finds her awake. Talia marries him (the sacred marriage) and they live long happily ever after, together with the twins. They are now one family, which symbolizes transcended duality./p>

Rapunzel

When we get the hang of the symbolism in fairy tales we recognize the similarities in stories worldwide.
The fairy tale of Rapunzel, for instance, uses similar images as the story of the Sleeping Beauty. Rapunzel is locked in a tower by a witch. A desirous prince climbs up via the braids of the girl, which she hangs out the window – a graceful metaphor for the kundalini-energy which flows upward through the spinal column and results in a merger of the masculine and feminine at the level of the forehead (the sixth chakra).
When the witch finds out about this secret meeting, she cuts off Rapunzel’s braids (the kundalini withdraws into the pelvis) and exiles her to a wilderness – an image that, like the dark forest, symbolizes life on earth.
The witch awaits the prince in the tower and startles him, which causes him to fall into a brier and become blind. He roams the earth until he finds Rapunzel again. By that time she’s given birth to their twins.
The blindness of the prince depicts becoming blind to the enticements of the world, which is required for the sacred marriage to transpire. The twin that Rapunzel delivered has the same meaning as Talia’s twins.
This time too the story ends with a royal wedding and a long life happily ever after (with God).

The moral of these stories

Man is a sleepwalker who takes life on earth much too serious and fairy tales too little. It’s time for the reverse!

This article was published in Paravisie Magazine.
Copyright Anne-Marie Wegh 2017

Anne-Marie Wegh is the author of the book
John the Baptist who became Jesus the Christ

Legends, myths and fairy tales

In spiritual traditions, the direct knowledge of the divine energy in our pelvis was shared only with a select group of initiated. The rest of humanity had to work their way through the veil of metaphor and symbolism in legends, myths, fairy tales and other folk stories, to obtain this information.

Not many people realize that the classic fairy tales we know so well, often refer to our potential for spiritual rebirth. Snow White, Cinderella, the Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel; all those timeless stories are metaphors for the process of kundalini awakening. The poor orphan with the evil stepmother, the prince and princess without kingdom, the lost child in the dark forest; that’s us. And all these stories want to teach us about the way back to our actual home, to God

By clicking on the following fairy tales you will find an analysis of the story by Anne-Marie:

SNOW WHITE
CINDERELLA
BLUE BEARD
SLEEPING BEAUTY
THE FROG KING

By |2020-02-21T11:23:04+00:00May 22nd, 2017|Anne-Marie, Paravisie|Comments Off on The illegitimate twin of the Sleeping Beauty