Chapter 15
Big Top

The Alchemical Wedding

- chapter index -
pg. 1 - Big Top | pg. 2 - Echoes of Camels and Needles | pg. 3 - The Crimson King
pg. 4 - Beelzebub | pg. 5 - Demon est Deus Inversus | pg. 6 - Prophets Chained for Burning Masks
pg. 7 - Kundalini | pg. 8 - The Dweller on the Threshold | pg. 9 - The Alchemical Wedding
pg. 10 - The Woman Clothed with the Sun | pg. 11 - Circe | pg. 12 - Ouroboros
pg. 13 - And there a Swan is Born | pg. 14 - Spiral

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666 | The Church | The High Priest

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As discussed earlier, Lizard depicts the crucifixion which is itself a depiction of the hieros gamos or sacred marriage. But Lizard similarly alludes to the Book of Revelation and the central theme of this final book of the New Testament is also the alchemical wedding, the union of all opposites, particularly the union of conscious and unconscious, the goal of Individuation.

"Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast,
for it is the number of a man: His number is 666."

- Revelation 13:18

"In the Second Book of Chronicles, the weight of the gold that was brought as tribute to King Solomon was 666 talents. This was a fitting tribute for the king, because in the ancient world, 666 was universally understood to be the number of the masculine principle. It was the "Yang" or "solar" number and represented reason, power, right and might: "banners waving in the sun." In its extreme it represents the tyrant.

The offsetting "feminine" principle (based on the ancient practice of gematria, a system which was used by the School of Pythagoras, by Plato and by numerous other intellectuals in the ancient world) bore the number of 1080, the "lunar" or "yin" number, based on the radius of the moon. As 666 represented the fire power of the sun, 1080 represented the waters of the feminine. In Greek, both "Holy Spirit" and "Earth Spirit" have the value of 1080. The sum of the letters in the Greek word for dove was 801, an anagram of 1080, making the dove a perfect symbol for both the goddess and the Holy Spirit. Each principle--masculine/feminine, fire/water, positive/negative energy was dangerous by itself, but harnessed with its opposite, they operated in harmony, like the positive and negative charges in electricity. The focus of the Greek philosophers was on balance in all things. When the numerical values of the two opposing principles, 666 and 1080, were added together, the resulting sum was 1746, the number designating the "sacred marriage" represented by the two triangles intertwined.

The entire creation flowing from the Source is an incredible and fascinating interplay or "dance of the polarities," summed up in the ancient symbol of sacred marriage, the which represents the sacred marriage of the opposites, the heiros gamos of antiquity.

The entwined triangles of the represent the archetypes of masculine and feminine, the "blade" and the "chalice." They are also occasionally called the "fire" and "water" triangles respectively, and correspond to the Yang and Yin of Oriental philosophy. This sacred symbol is found in ancient shrines in India where it represents the God Shiva and his consort Shakti, but it is also found in the sacred writings of scholars and mystics of Judaism, where it is known as the seal of Solomon."

- Imaging God as Partners
by Margaret Starbird

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"Dazzling intellectualism, as the manifested functionalism of the psychological "I," is without a doubt the Antichrist.
Those who suppose that the Antichrist is a strange personage born somewhere on the Earth or coming from this or that country are certainly completely mistaken.
We have emphatically stated that the Antichrist is definitely not a particular person, but all people.
Obviously, the Antichrist itself exists deep within each person and expresses itself in many ways.
Intellect which is placed in the service of the Spirit is useful; intellect which is divorced from the Spirit becomes useless."

- Gnostic Institute
The Great Rebellion

by Samael Aun Weor

The Beast of the Apocalypse, 666, (the "rough beast" of Yeats' The Second Coming ) is the Promethean man, the 21st Century Schizoid Man whose animal nature (lower Eros) is repressed and therefore out of control. "666 was the 'Yang' or the 'solar' number and represented reason, power, right and might: "banners waving in the sun." In its extreme it represents the tyrant." Such a man requires the external control of dogma, morality, the Logos.

"It is such a person who is especially liable to explode in violence when his manifest goodness seems to bear scant reward, and then the devil enters the vacuum and wreaks enormous violence and havoc."

- The Dark Face of Reality
by Dr. Martin Israel

Antichrist by Luca Signorelli Orvieto Frescoes The Beast represents fallen man, within whom the opposites of conscious and unconscious, Thinking and Feeling, Sensation and Intuition are divided. The Antichrist is so named because, unlike Christ, he resists the union of these inner opposites. It is only with the crucifixion, the consummation of the sacred marriage, that Jesus (man) becomes Christ.
The False Prophet is the differentiated Thinking function, a false Intuition standing in for the true Intuition which is attained only through a unification of the four functions.
"If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you.
If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you."

- Jesus
The Gospel of Thomas

Apocalypse by Francis Danby "Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly in midheaven, "Come, gather for the great supper of God, to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave, both small and great."
And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against him who sits upon the horse and against his army.
And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had worked the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulphur."

- Revelation 19:17-20

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In the Book of Revelation, the bride of Christ is the Church.

"The English word "church" is problematic and comes to us from paganism. No doubt the word means 'a circle.' The places of worship among the German and Celtic nations were always circular (Welsh, cyrch; French, cirque; Scotch, kirk; Greek, kirkos, etc.). Compare Anglo-Saxon circe, a church, with 'circol,' a circle."

- čkklesía


"Our common dictionaries...trace the word back to its Old English or Anglo-Saxon root, namely circe."

- The Final Reformation
by Whilhelm Wolfaardt

"Circe is the daughter of Helios (the Sun) and Hecate (or Perseis, who in some stories is one of the daughters of Ocean), representing the Moon. Thus Circe corresponds to the daughter of the Dark Moon (4.High Priestess) and the Dark Sun (5.High Priest), conceived in 6.Love, who is depicted mixing potions in 7.Temperance.

- The Pythagorean Tarot
by John Opsopaus

"Circe—"She-Falcon"; Moon Goddess. Called the death-bird (kirkos or falcon). As the circle, or cirque, she was the fate-spinner, weaver of destinies...."

(as was Clytemnestra who wove a crimson cloth for her husband, Agamemnon.
"Clytemnestra ...was the evil weaver, and this not only in a metaphorical sense, because she wove an evil plot to kill her husband, but, in the literal, non-metaphorical sense, because she wove evil fabrics: the long blood-red or crimson silk drape on which Agamemnon is made to walk.")

"...Ancient Greek writers spoke of her as Circe of the Braided Tresses because she could manipulate the forces of creation and destruction by knots and braids in her hair. Circe had her magnificent palace on a small isle (aeaea) in the Aegean Sea. The willow tree was sacred to her...,"

"Dreaming in the shadow
of the willow."

" are honey and fruits. She was the goddess of physical love, sorcery, enchantments, evil spells, vengeance, dark magick, witchcraft, cauldrons."

- Greek Goddesses

"In Homer's Odyssey the sorceress Circe, a daughter of Helios and Perse who lived on the island of Aeaea, was an enchantress who turned men into swine."

- čkklesía

"Circe also shows herself to be Mistress of the Beasts (Potnia Theron), connecting her with 9.Fortitude, for in the Odyssey the wild animals fawn on her like pets. There is a double entendre in the myth, for as enchanter and seductress, bewitching Circe transforms men into beasts. Love is transformative, but the consequences of love magic, which mixes love and coercion, are beastly."

- The Pythagorean Tarot
by John Opsopaus

"In the classical accounts Circe is pictured holding a golden cup in her hand mixed with wine and drugs through which she controlled the kings of the world (among whom was supposed to be Ulysses).

This Goddess is also found in the symbolic teaching of the Bible. She is nothing less than the Great Whore who sits on many waters and seven hills who masterminds Mystery Babylon. Listen to what God says:

"I will show thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters: with whom the kings of the earth have committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication...having a golden cup in her hand full of abominations and filthiness of her fornication. And upon her forehead was a name written, MYSTERY BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH"

- Revelation 17:2-5

This is a clear biblical description of the Goddess of the classical world known as Circe (or "Church").

This is the very woman that the Book of Revelation refers to (in symbolic language) when it mentioned a woman with the golden cup in her hand that deceived the kings of the world with her potion of drugged wine. This means that every time a person sees a place of worship on a street in one's local city called a "church," one should realize that the precise nomenclature was used in early times as referring to Kirke (Circe), the place where the Goddess Daughter of the Sun God (Helios) had her sanctuary."

- Chaos in the Churches
by Ernest L. Martin, Ph.D.

But this idea is also perfectly in keeping with the psychological and spiritual meaning of the album. Circe as a deceiver who leads men to identify with their animal natures (turns them into animals) is equivalent to Maya, the Lady of the Dancing Water , the material world.

"Pouring my wine your eyes caged mine.... ...glowing"

"...the inhabitants of the earth have been made drunk with the wine of her fornication."

"Your avarice has plunged the World into the Dark shadow of spiritual Desolation, trampling down good men so that you might exalt evil-doers. Of Shepherds like you did St. John the Evangelist write in his vision of the Apocalypse, revealing you to be that Great Harlot who sits upon the many Waters committing fornication with the Kings of the Earth; She, the seven-headed Beast, whose ten horns thunder forth Her vain Glory, deceiving her divine Spouse with Her false Virtue. Of gold and silver you have made your God, no differently than does the idolater, save that he worships but one Abomination and you one hundred. Ah Constantine! to so much wickedness did you give birth when you conferred temporal power and wealth upon the Holy Father."

- Dante, Inferno, xix, 104-117

"For the Yezidis, the "Devil" is everywhere, a "practitioner," in the sense of the third of the types of school about which Gurdjieff told Ouspensky, fit for the business of the world."

- Gurdjieff and Yezidism

When the Church proclaims itself to be the sole possessor of spiritual truth, when it discourages individuals from seeking the Kingdom within, when the Church tempts us to disregard intuition, the source of creativity, and instead follow a superimposed moral prerogative (a... "courtship solely of his word"), the Church becomes the greatest deceiver of all.

"The prince of darkness identified as the Antichrist works to perfection when he espouses causes of moral rectitude. He then affects a guise of virtuousness, and the populace can project all their own unconscious darkness on to the special targets of their execration."

- The Dark Face of Reality
by Dr. Martin Israel

When moral excellence or dogma is the Church's god; the Living God is ousted from the life of the Church.

"A genuine first-hand religious experience bound to be a heterodoxy to its witnesses, the prophet appearing as a mere lonely madman. If his doctrine prove contagious enough to spread to any others, it becomes a definite and labeled heresy. But if it then still prove contagious enough to triumph over persecution, it becomes itself an orthodoxy; and when a religion has become an orthodoxy, its day of inwardness is over: the spring is dry; the faithful live at second hand exclusively and stone the prophets in their turn. The new church, in spite of whatever human goodness it may foster, can be henceforth be counted on as a staunch ally in every attempt to stifle the spontaneous religious spirit, and to stop all later bubblings of the fountain from which in purer days it drew its own supply of inspiration."

- William James, The Varieties of Religious Experience

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In Prince Rupert Awakes , the sort of religious dogma propagated by the Pope (the keeper of the city keys) was the greatest obstacle to Prince Rupert's self-realization.

"Gone soon Piepowder's moss-weed court
Round which upholstered Lizards sold
Visions to their leaden flock
Of rainbows' ends and gold."

But, like any other manifestation on the physical plane, the Church (religion, "the keeper of the city keys") is "neither truly false nor falsely true" and, when conveying the right message, it can also be a positive force.

"I saw the great Master in the Temple. He was sitting on a golden throne set upon a purple platform, and he wore the robe of a high priest with a golden tiara. He held a golden eight-pointed cross, and lying at his feet were two crossed keys. Two initiates bowed before him and to them he spoke: --

"Seek the Path, do not seek attainment, Seek for the Path within yourself.

"Do not expect to hear the truth from others, nor to see it, or read it in books. Look for the truth in yourself, not without yourself.

"Aspire only after the impossible and inaccessible. Expect only that which shall not be.

"Do not hope for Me, -- do not look for Me, -- do not believe -- that I am outside yourself.

"Within your soul build a lofty tower by which you may ascend to Heaven. Do not believe in external miracles, expect miracles only within you. Beware of believing in a mystery of the earth, in a mystery guarded by men; for treasuries which must be guarded are empty. Do not search for a mystery that can be hidden by men. Seek the Mystery within yourself.
"Above all, avoid those towers built in order to preserve the mysteries and to make an ascent to Heaven by stone stairways. And remember that as soon as men build such a tower they begin to dispute about the summit.

"The Path is in yourself, and Truth is in yourself and Mystery is in yourself."

- Symbolism of the Tarot by Ouspensky

For orthodox Christians the "whore of Babylon" represents the "false church" and the "woman clothed with the sun" represents the "true church". Nevertheless, these two seeming opposites are one in the same. Synonymous with the negative and positive aspects of the High Priest tarot card (the "keeper of the city keys"), the "false church" is the Goddess as destroyer and the "true church" is the Goddess as creator. They are the negative/destructive and positive/creative aspects of the one Goddess. The marriage vow does say "for better and for worse".
Psychologically, the Whore of Babylon represents Sensation or the world as perceived by Sensation, the greatest obstacle to Intuition.

"Sensation is a hindrance to clear, unbiased, naive perception; its intrusive sensory stimuli direct attention to the physical surface, to the very things round and beyond which intuition tries to peer."

- C.G. Jung, Psychological Types, 1921

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Chapter One The Metaphysical Record In The Court Of the Crimson King In The Wake Of Poseidon Lizard The King In Yellow The Sun King Eight
The Lake Which Mirrors the Sky In the Beginning Was the Word In the Beginning was the Word...side two Eros and Strife Dark Night of the Soul...Cirkus Dark Night of the Soul...Wilderness Big Top Islands
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