Chapter Sixteen

ISLANDS






- chapter index -
pg. 1 - Islands | pg. 2 - Sagittarius | pg. 3 - Formentera Lady
pg. 4 - A Dragon Fig Tree's Fan | pg. 5 - The Sun | pg. 6 - Tanit
pg. 7 - The Crystal Cabinet | pg. 8 - Sailor's Tale | pg. 9 - Seizing the Ox
pg. 10 - The Letters

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The Voyage | Wine Dark Sea


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Sailor's Tale


"The body, they say, is a boat and the soul is the sailor. Samsara is the ocean which is crossed by the great sages."

- Mahavira,
Uttaradhyayana Sutra 23.73


"Man's life is a poison-laden ship, tossed into the ocean;
The shore is not visible as it floats in the midst of the waters.
Neither is there oar in hand, nor is there a pilot
in this terrible vast sea."

- Adi Granth, Maru Ashtpadi, M.1, p. 1009
- Crossing the Waters

"What softens the heart of man, Shipwrecked in storms dire, Tried, like another Ulysses, Pericles, prince of Tyre?"

- James Joyce: Ulysses, Scylla and Charybdis



"This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond."

- Rumi
The Essential Rumi,
Coleman Barks


"Brimstone fires spring up. Dense clouds roll past. Heavy Gatling guns boom. Pandemonium. Troops deploy. Gallop of hoofs. Artillery. Hoarse commands. Bells clang. Backers shout. Drunkards bawl. Whores screech. Foghorns hoot. Cries of valour. Shrieks of dying. Pikes clash on cuirasses. Thieves rob the slain. Birds of prey, winging from the sea, rising from marsh lands, swooping from eyries, hover screaming, gannets, connorants, vultures, goshawks, climbing woodcocks, peregrines, merlin, blackgrouse, sea eagles, gulls, albatrosses, barnacle geese. The midnight sun is darkened."

- James Joyce: Ulyssess, Circe

" In describing the archetype of the anima, Jung could have been writing about the Odyssey when he said, "Life is crazy and meaningful at once" (Jung 9,i: 65).
"It is just the most unexpected, the most terrifyingly chaotic things which reveal a deeper meaning. And the more this meaning is recognized, the more the anima loses her impetuous and compulsive character . . . In this way a new cosmos arises." (Jung 9,i: 64)

- Longing for Self: the Voyage as Soul-Making by Mark Greene





Seascape: Sunset - Martin Johnson Heade / 1861

"That which we do not bring to consciousness appears in our lives as fate."

- C. G. Jung

"Invoked or not invoked, the god is present."

- line two of C.G. Jung's epitaph


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The instrumental, Sailor's Tale , begins by strongly suggesting movement away from the complacency of Formentera Lady , the "island" of our protagonist's origin. The sailor is a wanderer.


The Voyage

For the child, lover of maps and engravings,
The universe equals his vast appetite.
Ah! how great the world when seen by lamplight!
How small when seen through memory's eyes!

One morning we set out our brain aflame.
Our heart swelled up with spite and bitter hopes,
And off we go at the rhythm of the waves,
Cradling our infinite on the sea's finite:

Some of us, happy to flee an infamous home;
Others the horrors of our native land,
Some, astrologers drowning in a woman's eyes,
Tyrannical Circe of the dangerous perfumes.

So, fleeing transformation into beasts they choose
To drink of space and light and fiery skies;
Ice eats their flesh, suns which make them copper and,
Then slowly kill the trace of kisses' touch.

But real voyagers are those alone who leave
For the leaving; light of heart, like balloons,
Never are they divergent from their fate.
Saying always, although not knowing why: "Let's leave!"

- Baudelaire
translation: Raymond P. Poggenburg

"It is well known that nothing should be taken from the Sacred Garden of the Sun (unless special permission be granted). Thus the shaman knows not to steal from the underworld, and northern folklore tells us to take nothing from the Land of Fairy; we also know the consequences of Persephone eating of the fruit of the underworld. The theme appears again in the Odyssey, for after Odysseus' journey to the underworld, he and his crew are told that when they pass between the twofold guardians (Scylla and Charybdis) and come to the Garden of the Sun (the Isle of Helios, Thrinakia), they should not disturb the god's flocks. But, as a consequence of Odysseus' lapse of consciousness, and motivated by physical privation, the crew break their vow. On the threshold of nirvana, they flee the island, but the vessel is blasted by Zeus's thunderbolt, and Odysseus, the sole survivor must backtrack between the twofold guardians. A seven-year sojourn with Kalupso (Calypso, the Concealer), the Atlantean spirit who dwells "at the Navel of the Sea," is necessary before he can attempt the journey again. Thus the consequences of breaking the taboos of the Garden. (Gantz 705; Odyssey XII)"

- The Pythagorean Tarot
by John Opsopaus


"Odysseus...is doomed to wander over the seas for ten years before he is allowed to return home to Ithaca. He must relearn how to live according to nature and in the society of other people -- must reunite with the feminine aspect of his being to become whole -- hence his encounters with and education at the hands of Circe, Scylla and Charybdis, his mother (in the underworld), Calypso and Nausicaa. It is telling that it is his ancient nurse (a mother figure) who recognizes him on his return to Ithaca -- finally healed and socialized."

- Derek Walcott's Omeros and Homer in the 20th Century
by Jane Anderson Jones


"The Orphan seeks first to cope with the Fall by trying to escape the reality of his or her new situation by becoming a Wanderer,"

- Carol S. Pearson's Archetypal Dramas

"Tarot archetypes are a key to 22 expressions of soul energy, and to the 21 steps we take on the journey of soul growth. The 22nd archetype is the Fool, who represents the vagabond traveler we all are through out the cycles of incarnations on the physical plane."

- Your Tarot Archetypes in Action
by L. A. Lothian



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"The first point to note about the wilderness (in The Odyssey) is that it is uncivilized and therefore lacks all the most important values manifested in the home. In the wilderness, there is no easy trust in hospitality; in the wilderness you might be eaten by a one-eyed cannibal, be turned into a pig, get seduced by the Lotos Eaters, or smashed up on the rocks. The wilderness is different and dangerous.

But the wilderness-and this is a particularly interesting aspect to the poem-is also beautiful and tempting. If Polyphemos is a brute, the landscape he lives in is something of a paradise, with food so plentiful that no one needs to work for it. The song of the Sirens is destructive, but it is beautiful. And the wilderness also contains Circe-the magical goddess of transformations.

The most famous reminder of this is the most famous phrase from the Odyssey, the "wine dark" sea. Like wine, the sea (and the wilderness) is dangerous, dark-it brings with it irrational dangers. But, like wine, the wilderness is intoxicating, even magical, potentially a gift to human beings.. One cannot think about wine without acknowledging the paradoxical nature of it."

- Observations on the Odyssey
by Ian Johnston


The Night Sea Descent into Unconsciousness

"No one of us is immune to the resistance that accompanies a major transition in consciousness. In the symbolism of the "Night Sea Journey," its beginning is marked by a descent into unconsciousness, one frequently preceded or accompanied by inundation dreams.
Rough Weather in the Mediterranean by Henry Moore Metaphorically speaking, we may have been drifting calmly on the sea of life. Suddenly the winds of change begin to blow. The clouds thicken and darken. Our boat begins to rock. We take hold of whatever we can. With all our might we resist being dumped overboard. But finally, dumped we are--out of our complacency and into the fathomless waters of the unconscious. From that point on, although it may appear that we are functioning as usual, something all-consuming--something like a gestation--is taking place deep within. Unseen, unknown, the energies of the psyche are coalescing around a new potential which, when its term is fulfilled, will result in a rebirth of soul."

- Return To The Whole
by Ann K Elliott




Islands ~ The Crystal Cabinet return to
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Islands ~ Seizing the Ox



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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
Islands Two Footnotes in the Sand Still Still 2
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