Meeting Notes for 8 May 2017

We discussed the task about moods. For this week, choose any task, e.g., doorways, handling keys, or whatever works. When awareness comes, observe the body for any signs of tension. E.g., in the feet, clenched fists, crossed arms, hunched shoulders, etc. See if the body begins to relax as the awareness is intensified. All that tension throughout the day is not healthy.

It was noted that moods can colour our mentality. We might feel gloomy one day, yet positive another. This rhythm is consistent throughout life. This is a ripple from the Fall of Man: the desire to know good and evil. Hence, we tend to view life from one perspective or another. Thus, we adopt the “original sin” as our own, thus recapitulating the original fall. This is what is meant the Fall being “mythological”: “a symbol expressing correspondences between archetypes in the past and their manifestations in the present”, as described in the meditation on Letter I: The Magician. The way back is the alchemical marriage of opposites, rather than the seesaw effect of our common life.

In relation to the reading, our normal waking state of semi-awareness is like the darkness, i.e., unconscious. The task then is to look for signs of intelligent life in that darkness.

We read about Daath starting on page 506 and ended at page 509 of Meditations on the Tarot with the Third Great Arcanum. Next time, we will continue with the following paragraph about the Second Great Arcanum.

(NOTE about the translation: the word “geniality” is misleading in English, as it does not mean the same thing as its French cognate. It really means something like “brilliant” or ingenious, not being a pleasant person.)

Daath is not one of the Sephiroth, since we are not born with it. It is something that needs to be created, that is, it is related to the second birth. Traditionally, it was called the “intellect illuminated by grace.” Grace actualizes the knowledge of being in the “image and likeness of God”, which otherwise is merely latent. This certainly accords with empirical experience. If we were born with that knowledge, then there would be no denial of God. Compare to our inborn need for food, water, and air.

Daath is the union of intelligence and wisdom. Or the union of discursive knowledge and the revelations known by faith.

It Scholastic terms, there are likewise three stages:

  • Metaphysics: discursive knowledge (i.e., its highest expression), what can be known by thinking, i.e., purely human wisdom.
  • Theology: the knowledge revealed by faith
  • Mystical Theology: the experiential knowledge of God, direct gnosis, beyond both reason and faith.

    At lower levels – that is, what the Kabbalah refers to as worlds – there is a foreshadowing of gnosis in artistic creation and in love between the sexes. Few reach the knowledge of Daath. More – but still relatively few – are able to experience aesthetic ecstasy in great poetry, literature, music or art. Yet, love between the sexes seems within reach for most people, so there is always a desperate and frenzied search for it, even for ersatz imitations of it. If you’ve ever been in love, or experienced sexual pleasure, you know how fleeting it is, or even, unfortunately, how it may devolve into pain.

    Vraiment commencent amours en joie et finissent en douleurs. ~ Merlin

    Imagine, then, how much more satisfying gnosis is.