~ In the Wake of Poseidon ~

- chapter index -
pg. 1 - Eros and Strife | pg. 2 - Peace: A Beginning | pg. 3 - Pictures of a City
pg. 4 - Cadence and Cascade | pg. 5 - In the Wake of Poseidon I | pg. 6 - In the Wake of Poseidon II
pg. 7 - Cat Food | pg. 8 - The Devil's Triangle | pg. 9 - Garden of Worm
pg. 10 - Peace: An End

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Plato's Spawn | Dame Scarlet Screen | The Midnight Queen | Virgo

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In the Wake of Poseidon
including Libra's Theme

"Most remarkable of all in Eros is his mighty force. It is a force with two edges. Turn it one way, and it cuts through walls of separation. Turn it another and discernment is sacrificed."

- David Appelbaum
Parabola, winter 1995

The anthem and namesake of the album, In the Wake of Poseidon is equivalent to the song In the Court of the Crimson King and might well be sub-titled "The Continued Observations of the Crimson King". However, instead of taking place in a "court", In the Wake of Poseidon chronicles what occurs "in the wake of", or as a consequence of, Poseidon (Poseidon, in this case, representing primordial urge, fallen Eros). In the Court of the Crimson King chronicles some of the ways in which the king's feelings were subordinate to thinking while In the Wake of Poseidon explores the consequences of "thinking governed by feeling". Put another way, album one is concerned with the dark side of the Thinking function and album two is concerned with the dark side of the Feeling function. The song, In the Wake of Poseidon , moreover, is concerned with the imbalance between the two psychological functions.

"Reason flows from the blending of rational thought and feeling. If the two functions are torn apart, thinking deteriorates into schizoid intellectual activity and feeling deteriorates into neurotic life- damaging passions."

-Erich Fromm

"...Pete Sinfield rewrote the words to 'Poseidon' about 25 times to tie in with the cover picture."

- Melody Maker, 9 May 1970

Therefore, the lyrics of In the Wake of Poseidon refer to each of the archetypes on the cover painting and the song follows very much from the end of the first album, The Dance of the Puppets . In view of this, the title song, In the Wake of Poseidon can be seen as the immediate sequel to the song In the Court of the Crimson King . It was at the end of that song when our protagonist realized that...

"...we and our parents are puppets in an archetypal drama, manipulated by giant figures operating above and behind our conscious awareness."

Jung and Tarot, an Archetypal Journey

by Sallie Nichols

The archetypes are these "giant figures" and, just as Pictures of a City develops out of the final verse of 21st Century Schizoid Man , In the Wake of Poseidon is an extended meditation into how it is these archetypes manipulate our lives.

"The goal of evolution for humanity is to become consciously and livingly aware of the nature of these energies (zodiacal influences) and begin to know them and to use them."

- D. K. Foundation

"The archetype is the promoter of ideas and is also responsible for the emotional restrictions which prevent the renunciation of earlier theories."

- Marie-Louise von Franz

"The Kabbalists and Hasidim held that the human mind is a mirror and, in some respects, the very origin of the theosophical realm. (Idel, 1988, 146-53, Idel, 1992, 227-35). For example, one of the earliest Kabbalists Azriel of Gerona (early 13th century) theorized that the energy of the human soul derives from the heavenly Sefirot, the ten archetypes through which God expresses himself in creation, and he equated each Sefirah with a psychological power or physical organ in man (Scholem, 1987, p. 95).

Moshe Idel has shown how the ecstatic Kabbalah, with its focus on the experience of the initiate, regarded the Sefirot themselves as human spiritual and psychic processes (idel, 1988, p. 146). For example, Abraham Abulafia (1240-1295) understood the names of the ten Sefirot (Thought, Wisdom, Understanding, Mercy, Fear, Beauty, Victory, Splendor, etc.) as referring to processes taking place in the mind and body of man, and thought it possible for man to cleave to these attributes through proper meditation (p. 147)."

- The Lurianic Kabbalah: An Archetypal Interpretaion
Sanford L. Drob, Ph.D.

On the title song of the first album, we caught a glimpse of an archetype as a negative force

"The keeper of the city keys
Put shutters on the dreams."

The album jacket states...
"Cover painting '12 Archetypes' Tammo de Jongh
with reference to his book 'The Magic Circle'
and Richard Gardner's 'The Purpose of Love'

"Richard Gardner introduces twelve prototypes that together encompass a unified consciousness, functioning as one realized body. The twelve compliment and enhance each other even in their differences, and include the whole spectrum of human nature, hidden and realized, that is the key to freedom and immortality.

Working together with the artist Tammo de Jongh, Gardner has developed a magical circle of the mind. It is a workable representation of the twelve archetypes, delineating and receiving influence from the inter-relationship and gradual phasing of the four elements, Earth, Fire, Air and Water. The center is where all attributes may be recognized, welcomed and assimilated into an integrated whole."

- The Twelve Faces of Humankind

It would seem that the archetypes are "assimilated and integrated" only in so far as the four psychological functions have been balanced within the psyche.

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The Observer
The Observer

"Plato's spawn cold ivyed eyes
Snare truth in bone and globe."

"In everyday usage, the feeling function is often confused with emotion. The latter, more appropriately called affect, is the result of an activated complex. Feeling not contaminated by affect can be quite cold."

- Carl Gustav Jung

As mentioned in chapter four, "bone and globe" (throwing bones and the crystal ball) refers to fortune-telling - which is associated with Neo-Platonic mysticism. Neo-Platonism, as the name implies, grew out of Platonic thought and so could be said to be "Plato's spawn". Additionally, mysticism, when it presents itself as science (pseudo-science, actually), can be quite cold and dogmatic.

"The intellect is necessary to break down and analyze, in spite of all that Lactantius or St. Augustine might say as to the futility of any study of Nature,

Plato and Aristotle, while bringing their thoughts to bear upon the world with great beauty and force, did much to draw mankind away from those methods which in modern times have produced the best results.

Plato developed a world in which the physical sciences had little if any real reason for existing;

What we do not see is the fundamental conflict between thinking and feeling and how poorly developed and inferior feeling is in Western society. Feeling is a different and equally valid way of approaching and organizing experience. Jung defined wisdom as the union of thinking and feeling. They are complementary to each other and each is essential. The arguments the militia make against the government are what Jung described as thinking governed by feeling:

' does not follow its own logical principle but is subordinated to the principle of feeling. In such thinking the laws of logic are only ostensibly present; in reality they are suspended in favor of the aims of feeling.'

- C. G. Jung. Psychological types, collected works vol. 6

- Political skill and feeling

Ironically, Plato, in Phaedrus, also conceived of Eros as a dual force: a desire for either bodily pleasure or intellectual wisdom.

"Next the concepts of Abundance and Shortage focus their significance on the status of human knowledge. It strikes how the double nature of the demon Eros is in a constant dynamic flux between 'being full to overflowing', and 'standing with empty hands'. In this respect the philosopher is situated between the completely ignorant and the Gods in what seems a constant flux between these polarities. As has been defined before, a desire is aimed at something of which we have some sort of notion, but that is not in our possession, etc. The metaphor reinstates from this definition of Eros, that the Gods do not desire wisdom, because they already have wisdom.

On the other opposite side of the scale the totally ignorant are situated. Their utter ignorance is caused by a complete lack of desire for wisdom. Their absolute preoccupation for their 'bodily' desires cuts them from any possible desire deriving from their knowledgeable and rational faculty of the soul, making them 'immune' for perceiving any lack of knowledge by their desire. Both groups are situated at the extreme opposite sides, representing in the most absolute way ' Eros' demonic nature' of Abundance and Shortage with regard to the opposite motives of not-desiring knowledge."

- An introduction into Plato's 'doctrine of eros'
Dr. Theo Kuijl

"cold ivyed eyes"

Ivy, a symbol of Dionysus, also represents the positive and negative qualties of Eros.

"The gardener plants an evergreen"

"The evergreen Ivy is of widespread origin and attaches itself to garden walls, among hedges and other trees with aerial roots and trails decoratively all over its support. It has a reputation for killing trees which is totally spurious or growing on decayed trunks. For this reason it is closely associated with death. In fact the flowers produce large quantities of nectar and are a favourite with bees, wasps and other insects.

In mythology and folklore it is sacred to the Roman Bacchus or the Greek Dionysus and the Goddess Artemis, it is said to guard against drunkenness when worn as a charm. Its' feminine qualities should not be ignored as it was closely associated with the Matronae - the Five Mothers symbolic of the five stages of life (Birth, Initiation, Love, Repose and Death) or simply the 5 vowels. However, what is also quite interesting is that all parts of this plant are extremely toxic, whilst symbolically it also connotes the continuance of life, companionship and support during the days of Winter. In Greek myth Orpheus is torn limb from limb by the delirious women intoxicated on the witches brew. This took place during the annual Bacchanalia in September, celebrated by Thracians with a concoction made from Ivy leaves and the mushroom amanita muscaria. Graves mentions that the last bundle of wheat was gathered together with ivy and ceremonially called the "Ivy Girl" - this was a penalty or ignominious award for being the last to gather in your crops. On another level it represents a shrewish wife who slowly strangles what independence a man might have."

- Ogham Scripts

"As Taurus is the symbol of desire in all its manifestations, the effects of Taurian influence are likely to be extremely varied. It sees average man impelled by desire and unruly appetites, just as with equal power the disciple is impelled along the Path of Return by aspiration. The one is driven by wilfulness, stubbornness and insistence upon material or sensual satisfaction; the other uses the energy as a motivation towards constructive, creative living. Average man is governed by the will of the personality; the disciple is cultivating purpose and vision."

- D. K.Foundation

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The Joker

The Joker

"Harlequins coin pointless games
Sneer jokes in parrot's robe."

The Actress
The Actress

"Two women weep, Dame Scarlet Screen
"Sheds sudden theatre rain,"

These medieval vignettes are examples of "thinking governed by feeling", and "utter ignorance caused by a complete lack of desire for wisdom". Pointless rituals, blindly followed by the masses, are enacted by harlequins (priests) who, lacking wisdom, can only "parrot" what they have read. The two women who "weep" are attempting to demonstrate blind faith in the church. But it is an act ("theatre rain"). Actresses in Britain are sometimes awarded the title "Dame of the British Empire", the female equivalent of knighthood. The word "scarlet" is used to suggest the shame of a scarlet letter (the shame of deception, in this case) and the phrase"scarlet screen" is meant to suggest the actors and actresses of the "silver screen".
According to Jung, an extravagant public display of feeling can betray an unconscious opposition towards precisely what it is the "two women" are so dramatically professing to believe.

"The valuations resulting from the act of feeling either correspond directly with objective values or at least chime in with certain traditional and generally known standards of value. This kind of feeling is very largely responsible for the fact that so many people flock to the theatre, to concerts, or to Church, and what is more, with correctly adjusted positive feelings. Without this feeling, for instance, a beautiful and harmonious sociability would be unthinkable. But this salutary effect is lost as soon as the object gains an exaggerated influence. For, when this happens, extraverted feeling draws the personality too much into the object, i.e. the object assimilates the person, whereupon the personal character of the feeling, which constitutes its principal charm, is lost. Feeling then becomes cold, material, untrustworthy. It betrays a secret aim, or at least arouses the suspicion of it in an impartial observer. No longer does it make that welcome and refreshing impression the invariable accompaniment of genuine feeling; instead, one scents a pose or affectation, although the egocentric motive may be entirely unconscious.
Should this process go further, a strangely contradictory dissociation of feeling develops; every object is seized upon with feeling. The subject becomes so swallowed up in individual feeling processes that to the observer it seems as though there were no longer a subject of feeling but merely a feeling process. In such a condition feeling has entirely forfeited its original human warmth, it gives an impression of pose..."
Corresponding with the degree of dissociation between the ego and the momentary state of feeling, signs of disunion with the self will become more or less evident, i.e. the original compensatory attitude of the unconscious becomes a manifest opposition. This reveals itself, in the first instance, in extravagant demonstrations of feeling, in loud and obtrusive feeling predicates, which leave one, however, somewhat incredulous. They ring hollow; they are not convincing."

- Classics in the History of Psychology, Jung 1921/1923

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The Enchantress
The Enchantress

"Whilst dark in dream the Midnight Queen
Knows every human pain."

"The Shining Queen, who rules the velvet night,
And nurtures nascent growth, concealed from sight,
Transforms and changes, light and dark by turns,
And seeks the Sun to sire the spark that burns
Within the water, newborn Child of Light."

- verse accompanying the High Priestess tarot card

"The activity of the High Priestess is symbolized by the abyssal water - impenetrably dark, infinitely deep, always mixing, flowing, seeking its own level; by yielding she is as forceful as the mighty river Ocean. Her tears are the healing dew, always striving to restore wholeness when division has gone too far."

- The Pythagorean Tarot by John Opsopaus

"Number 2 is the symbol of duality, the Mother-principle, as separate from the Father-principle of Number 1, which is now broken up into its positive and negative elements. Number 2 signifies a pair of opposites: day and night, male and female, projection and reception. In Key 2, the High Priestess, or the unconscious, reflects the consciousness of the Magician, and is the vessel which receives the creative force and initiates form."

- The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
The Tarot and Numerology

And so we see that, by representing the High Priestess, the song In the Wake of Poseidon , is the feminine (kinder gentler) counterpart of the song The Court of the Crimson King (which represents the High Priest).

"The High Priestess is the virgin daughter of the Moon, the eternal feminine, sometimes called Isis, Artemis or Diana. She corresponds to all the virgin goddesses of the ancient world, even also to Eve before her union with Adam. She is spiritual enlightenment and inner illumination."

- The Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn
The Tarot and Numerology

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"The cycle of the heavens, astrologers say, reflects the cycles of the Earth. Thus, the wheel of the zodiac turns to Virgo, the virgin, as summer ends, and time nears for the harvest.

Virgo is sometimes associated with Demeter, the Greek goddess of the harvest, who made the earth lie fallow for half of every year. However, astrologers say that Virgoís original symbol was the Sphinx, the mythological poser of riddles.
So, too, do Virgos question, turning inward to seek larger meanings about causes and purposes in life and looking for worthy goals to pursue. Virgos are the zodiacís analysts, its critics, its purists. They are the servants, custodians, and perfecters of culture.

As for the Virgin, she is a symbol less of purity than of hidden wisdom. She is woman in the fullness of self-possession -- the high priestess, the healer, the keeper of lifeís mysteries. Her wheat sheaves symbolize the disciplined fertility of the earth.

Virgos seek complete realization of the mind. They are logical, practical, and methodical. Their intellect subjugates their instincts."

( Just as the intellect of the narrator of In the Wake of Poseidon critiques the Feeling driven behavior of the characters in the song.)

"They have a strong sense of order and organization and a love of the technological and the minute. Virgo Samuel Johnson clearly exhibited the signís passion for detail in compiling his famous dictionary.

Virgos are theorists, masters of extrapolation and deduction. They are also perfectionists. They want their environments, as well as their lives, to be tidy. After summerís bounty, Virgos put all in order for the coming winter. They separate the wheat from the chaff. They plan sort, classify, and store."

( The narrator of In the Wake of Poseidon "sorts and classifies" various excesses of the Feeling function.)

- Virgo

"Who criticizes all she sees?
Yes, e'en would analyse a sneeze!
Who hugs and loves her own disease?
Yes, Virgo !"

Eros and Strife ~ Cadence and Cascade
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Eros and Strife ~ In the Wake of Poseidon (pt. 2)

Sign the Dreambook Dreambook Read the Dreambook

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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