2015: Christmas Solstice. Time. Mithras. Initiation. Origins Odyssey.
“Lost am I in light supernal and on that light I turn my back.”
(Full Moon: Christmas Day 25-12-15. 11.11 am. GMT.)
“When Christ proclaimed, along with all world Saviours and Sun-Gods, that He was the Light of the worlds, He inaugurated a marvellous period in which humanity has been widely and universally enlightened. This period dates from Christmas Day, two thousand years ago, in Palestine. That was the greatest of all Christmas Days and its emanating influence was more potent than was any previous arrival of a Bearer of Light, because humanity was more ready for the light.”1
The Christmas Solstice
Transcending Time Through Meditation
The Solstice and Initiation
Mithras as Christ in Ancient Times
Analysis of the Mithras Figure
Resumption of the Origins Odyssey
The Christmas Solstice
This year the Capricorn full moon period occurs on Christmas Day, which is always the third and final day of the winter solstice. The entire period from 22-25 December is when the “Sun stands still” (sol-stice) but especially when it culminates at the full moon. The full moon meditative “approach” is a few days beforehand, and this year it starts right on the solstice.
The December solstice is a time of deep inner reflection at this darkest time of the year. The Earth is oriented to the north pole-star Polaris, hence, the symbolism of the northern hemisphere seasons is most apt for the four points of the cardinal cross – the solstices and equinoxes – Aries-Libra, Cancer Capricorn.
The symbolism of a remote cabin, warm and lit within is a good metaphor for Cancer-Capricorn and the radiant heart: Cancer – “I build a lighted house and therein dwell” – and Capricorn, “Lost am I in light supernal and on that light I turn my back.” The stillness and quiet of the wilderness, a perfect place of reflection, to ponder upon the soul of all things.
The conscious server dwells not in the light but draws upon its nurturing force, utilising it in service. Most of us do not have that ideal physical place, but it can be built through regular meditation, building within the heart a permanent abode of refuge and sustenance.
Transcending Time Through Meditation
It is at the solstice where opportunity arises to transcend Time, due to the astronomical illusion created by the Sun seeming to “stand still” – or rise in the same place for three consecutive days. Time is ruled by Saturn, the Lord of Karma and Cycles – also intimately associated with astrology. Solstices and Equinoxes are doorways to the Eternal Now and the key to pass through is meditation.
Time is illusory, yet it is a Saturnian structure which has been invented to create an synchronistic order for all. However, living by “tick-tock” time can keep one unnecessarily plugged into the maya of the outer world. In order to survive, everyone must conform to time – but somehow evade becoming a subservient slave to it.
Hence, during the busy-ness of Christmas when the year is coming to a close, the solstices are an opportunity to take pause for reflection, to transcend the outer form of time (often during a holy-day break), and reach back to the soul’s source. This is a somewhat paradoxical notion, given that Capricorn is such a deeply materialistic sign, yet it is also spiritually one of the most powerful signs – the tenacious Goat perseveringly picks and plods its way to success upon the summit of the mountain.
It is difficult for many in the busy Western world to meditate, to “make time” to transcend outer time and reach the goal of “no time”. We innately know that time is an illusion, through dream experiences that might take place within a few short seconds, but will take fifteen minutes to relate to someone or to write down. Likewise, in true meditation, time is transcended. One uses an active and applied Saturnian mental discipline, to the point where it can be released to passively absorb the higher intuition.
Hence, Capricorn receives the visioning, dreaming nature of the previous sign Sagittarius, moulding and manifesting it into a concrete structure; this is Capricorn’s forté and why it is so successful in the material world – as the boss of a company, a manager of resources and money etc. Capricorn is an “Executive” in the material or spiritual world. Also, in Sagittarius essential principles and philosophies are encoded and manifested into earthly laws in Capricorn.
Capricorn also taps into Neptune as the esoteric ruler of its opposite sign Cancer – in terms of this visioning process. Visualisation is a key to meditation, engaging the “feminine” imagination to blend with the “masculine” mind – here is where the true higher tantra takes place. Neptune is deeply related to Capricorn esoterically (as described in another newsletter). In Western Esotericism, one of the names of The Christ is Neptune – and His message is celebrated at Christmas: Goodwill to all (wo) men, kindness, giving, sharing.
In Capricorn, the Cancer polarity is brought into play through family reunion, affirmation of the family unit (Cancer) that works within the state or nation (Capricorn). New Year’s resolutions are made in Capricorn for the year ahead – but probably have their origin in Sagittarius – they simply take on a more concrete, less nebulous form in Capricorn.
These Christmas traditions transcend all religions and are important to keep enunciating, so that Humanity is not completely drowned by the tsunami of materialism that has surrounded Christmas for many decades.
The Solstice and Initiation
In ancient Egypt the candidate for initiation was “raised from dead to life”, the basis for the sarcophagus ritual. The candidate’s body was left in the sarcophagus whilst s/he was led through the subtle worlds by the guiding Hierophant. This three-day “transition” period is also symbolic of the Third Initiation (the transfiguration), where the mental body demonstrates complete control over the three-fold personality.
Though not many souls have reached this point of unfoldment, it remains the immediate goal for advanced humanity in the imminent Aquarian cycle. Capricorn is a sign of mental energy, with the rays of will – 1, 3, 5, 7 associated. Although Capricorn is connected to Initiation in general, it has a particular affinity to the Third Initiation, the third ray of Active-Intelligence and the third chakra, the throat, seat of the mental body.
The darkest depths of winter heralding the increasing light as the Sun heads toward Aries, is a profound symbol of initiation into the Mysteries. Every atom of matter in the soil and atmosphere contains that light. Humanity’s perennial search for light is the “goat who seeks the green”, the search for the soul, the true “home”. Capricorn represents the birth of the Christ in the cave of the heart – nine months after His “conception” in Aries – a sign where the Sun is exalted and the festival that celebrates Christ’s resurrection.
Mithras as Christ in Ancient Times
“The night of December 25, to which date the Nativity of Christ was ultimately assigned, was exactly that of the birth of the Persian savior Mithra, who, as an incarnation of eternal light, was born the night of the winter solstice.”2
Regarding the Mithraic Mysteries, H. P. Blavatsky comments,
“Plutarch tells us how the Mithraic Cult had been established in Rome about the year 70 B.C. Mithras was fabled as having been born in a cave … The “Cave of Mithras” was the birthplace of the Sun in the Winter Solstice … on the 25th of December in the sign of the Sea-Goat.
The Akkadian name of the tenth month, that of the Sea-Goat, which answers roughly to our December, the tenth by name, is Abba Uddu, that is, the “Cave of Light”; the cave of re-birth for the Sun in the lowest depth at the Solstice, figured as the Cave of Light.”3
Elsewhere, the cave of Mithras is described,
“This cave was adorned with the signs of the zodiac, Cancer and Capricorn. The summer and winter solstices were chiefly conspicuous, as the gates of souls descending into this life, or passing out of it in their ascent to the Gods; Cancer being the gate of descent, and Capricorn of ascent. These are the two avenues of the immortals passing up and down from earth to heaven, and from heaven to earth.”4
Indeed, Cancer is the door into incarnation and Capricorn the door out of incarnation. From the womb to the tomb. Capricorn is regarded as a sign of death and finality – it was the last sign of the zodiac in Atlantean times.
The period in Rome echoed a more ancient time when the Mithraic Mysteries were instituted in the Age of Taurus, starting approximately 4,363 BC. Mithras was the name of the Being who held the Office of the Christ-Krishna (or Lord Maitreya in the Buddhist Tradition) during that period, just as Orpheus held the same office for the previous Age of Gemini.
“Mithras, the rock-born god, the symbol of the male mundane-fire, or the personified primordial light, and Mithra, the fire-goddess, at once his mother and his wife.5 … Mithras is an emanation of the Logos and the chief of the twenty-eight izeds, who are the tutelary [guardian] angels over the spiritual portion of mankind — the souls of men. ”6
This “logos” is the Solar Logos – our Sun, whose body encompasses the entire solar system. It is solar consciousness that is celebrated at Christmas, a consciousness that extends beyond Earth’s boundaries, giving a taste of vast worlds that lay before the astonished Initiate.
Mithras is therefore the Sun – the one who holds the Office of the Christ, the representative of the Solar plan for Earth, our so-called “non-sacred” planet seeking to find its place within the planetary family of the Solar System.
As Humanity awakens to the Planetary Plan and ultimately the Solar Plan, it fulfills its role in helping our Planetary Logos to accomplish “sacred” planet status, the ramifications of which will ultimately extend throughout and beyond the solar system. These ancient Mithraic Mysteries were the source for Christianity:
“The ideals of early Christianity were based upon the high moral standards of the pagan Mysteries, and the first Christians who met under the city of Rome used as their places of worship the subterranean temples of Mithras, from whose cult has been borrowed much of the sacerdotalism7 of the modem church.
The ancient philosophers believed that no man could live intelligently who did not have a fundamental knowledge of Nature and her laws. Before man can obey, he must understand, and the Mysteries were devoted to instructing man concerning the operation of divine law in the terrestrial sphere.
… the early cults were moralistic rather than religionistic; philosophic rather than theologic. They taught man to use his faculties more intelligently, to be patient in the face of adversity, to be courageous when confronted by danger, to be true in the midst of temptation, and, most of all, to view a worthy life as the most acceptable sacrifice to God, and his body as an altar sacred to the Deity.
Sun worship played an important part in nearly all the early pagan Mysteries. This indicates the probability of their Atlantean origin, for the people of Atlantis were sun worshipers. The Solar Deity was usually personified as a beautiful youth, with long golden hair to symbolize the rays of the sun. This golden Sun God was slain by wicked ruffians, who personified the evil principle of the universe.
By means of certain rituals and ceremonies, symbolic of purification and regeneration, this wonderful God of Good was brought back to life and became the Savior of His people. The secret processes whereby He was resurrected symbolized those cultures by means of which man is able to overcome his lower nature, master his appetites, and give expression to the higher side of himself.
The Mysteries were organized for the purpose of assisting the struggling human creature to reawaken the spiritual powers which, surrounded by the flaming ring of lust and degeneracy, lay asleep within his soul. In other words, man was offered a way by which he could regain his lost estate. (See Wagner’s Siegfried.)”8
Analysis of the Mithras Figure (The Leontocephaline)
Mithras is depicted with a lion’s head, four wings, a coiled serpent winding several times around his body, a long staff and is clutching keys. Mithras is standing on the Earth, subjugating matter to the solar principle.
The lion’s head hints at Leo, a sign ruled by the Sun, the Solar Logos:
“A solar Logos is both a Divine Manasaputra and likewise a Dragon of Wisdom, and His problem concerns itself with the development of the principle of cosmic Will which will make Him what has been called a “Lion of Cosmic Will.”9
Leo the fifth sign also has a very deep connection to Capricorn the tenth sign. The multiple of 2 x 5 = 10 suggests the blending of Love-Wisdom (2) and Mind (5) to achieve perfection (10). Serpents and dragons are synonymous in esotericism – a serpent or dragon of the Wisdom. In Esoteric Astrology there exist many relations between the signs, planets and rays:
“This sign, Leo, is the fifth sign of the zodiac which indicates that it is part of the mysterious number, ten—the number of perfection, a relative perfection, prior to entering into a new cycle of progress. This links Leo consequently with Capricorn, the tenth sign of the zodiac, for it is the processes of initiation which make the self-conscious person the group conscious individual. The self-conscious individual in Leo becomes the Christ-conscious Initiate in Capricorn. ”10
Leo-Capricorn also hold the secret to a great mystery,
“… the ancient nursery rhyme about the “lion and the unicorn going up to town,” contains in a peculiar way the secret of initiation and the “going up” of the human being to the portal of admittance into the Hierarchy as well as the “mystic raising” of which Masonry holds the key.”11
The four wings of the statue relate to the angelic kingdom, particularly the Archangels and others mentioned earlier – the “twenty-eight izeds, who are the tutelary angels”. The wings also concern the four winds, four directions etc., hinting also at the future evolution where the angelic kingdom will merge with the human kingdom.
The serpent winds around the body five, six or seven times depending upon the statues depicted. There are several interpretations of this most evocative symbol:
1. The serpent can be the serpent of matter or the serpent of wisdom – “be ye wise as serpents” is the ancient Gnostic axiom. The body is encased or incarnate in matter – freeing oneself from that matter is the path to wisdom and initiation – for a human or the Solar Logos. As above, so below.
“Capricorn marks the point of greatest density and concrete expression and shows the life divine as deeply imbedded in substance. This is the true state of death as far as the life is concerned; it is captivity in form.
Capricorn is where he finally subdues matter, form or concrete expression to divine uses and purposes, and thus demonstrates the triumph and the potency of the Christ life.”12
2. The spirals of the serpent represent the cycles of time, spiral-cyclic time, infinite and timeless and that which far transcends linear time lived by most of the world today. Mithras was also regarded as an aspect of Cronos, the Lord of Time and one and the same with Saturn, ruler of Capricorn.
3. In the two pictures above, five spirals are depicted and may symbolise five of the seven rays (and their cycles) which are in incarnation at any one time. Five can relate to many things – Leo, mind, the five Dhyani Buddhas etc.
The staff of Mithras is the Rod of Power or the Rod of Initiation through which solar electricity passes to the candidate for Initiation.
The keys Mithras holds are the keys to the Mysteries – for those who meditate upon this enigmatic figure and receive response from the realm of buddhi-intuition.
When the author visualised this symbol in meditation, the figure’s wings started to beat at high speed, like watching a humming bird in slow motion. It emanated a bright golden light from its core, with radiating indigo and purple rings. The figure then started to spin so fast that its form became invisible, generating an intense golden light. It seemed to be turning upon itself in a kind of fourth dimensional motion in all directions, giving the sense of Omnipresence, the Ineffable, the One.
Resumption of the Origins Odyssey
After a three-year break, I will be resuming my ORIGINS ODYSSEY travels at the Capricorn Solstice – in the south of Italy, Sardinia and Sicily. Origins Odyssey is a documentary film project for my work on The Hidden History of Humanity or HHH.
Sagittarius is the perfect sign to start a new adventure and happens to be the personality ruling sign of Italy. (Leo is the soul ruler.) Hence, with the latest new moon in Sagittarius conjunct my progressed Sun (and transiting Sun opposite Jupiter), I adopt Italy’s soul keynote, “I carve the paths” and set off with a full quiver of arrows!
A new Facebook page (The Hidden History of Humanity), will contain some updates of my travels – an abbreviated travel diary of sorts, though the main travel diaries will be posted to those subscribed to the monthly astrological newsletter (free) here. Previous travel diaries (1-6) for mainly Britain and Greece can be found here. Travel diary #7 is due soon! Also, the main essay that summarises my investigations into esoteric cycles, astrology and ancient history can be found here.
Introduction to HHH
For those not familiar with my work on Esoteric History, see this 18-minute video – click on the picture to the left below. For more detail about the contents of HHH, click on the book cover on the right.
I look forward to sharing my explorations with you over the next several months! Christmas Blessings ….
Phillip Lindsay © 2015.
Please donate to help keep these projects running! The monthly astrological newsletter and Origins Odyssey – Thanks!
- The Destiny of the Nations, Alice A. Bailey. p.148. [↩]
- Joseph Campbell [↩]
- Collected Writings VIII, H.P. Blavatsky. p.364. [↩]
- Monumental Christianity, John P. Lundy. [↩]
- The Secret Doctrine I, H.P. Blavatsky, p.130. [↩]
- Isis Unveiled II, H.P. Blavatsky. p.221. [↩]
- Sacerdotalism is the belief that propitiatory sacrifices for sin require the intervention of a priest. [↩]
- The Secret Teachings of All Ages, Manly P. Hall. [↩]
- A Treatise on Cosmic Fire, Alice A. Bailey. p.305. [↩]
- Esoteric Astrology, Alice A. Bailey, p.286. [↩]
- Esoteric Astrology, Alice A. Bailey, p.155. [↩]
- Esoteric Astrology, Alice A. Bailey, p.379. [↩]