The Autumn Equinox, Sandworms, The Tower and the Hebrew letter Pei – פ

“My awareness flows into that timeless stratum from where I can view time, I sense the available paths, the winds of the future, the winds of the past, The one-eyed vision of the past, the one-eyed vision of the present, and the one-eyed vision of the future, all combined in a trinocular vision that permits me to see time become space.”  Paul Atreides, Dune

“My awareness flows into that timeless stratum from where I can view time”

It is nearly the autumn equinox and you can feel the change in the air, most of the trees are still in their bright and deep green but there are more leaves on the ground and the horse-chestnut trees are turning brown. It is two days before the autumn equinox and my awareness flows into that timeless stratum from where I can view time. On Tuesday at 2:30 pm, we will get a glimpse of time manifesting itself, like a secret door that closes behind us and opens again but to a new and different direction. The astral compass points to the west.  This Time we face The Great Spirit Of The West, which at this point of time, for me, it will be represented by Leviathan, some may refer to it as Apophis or Tiamat or in our case the great beasts of the sand ocean of Dune, the mighty Sandworms.

Sandworm

Thinking about Leviathan, I can’t help but keep going back to the story of Jonah that has been “swallowed by a large fish, in whose belly he spends three days and three nights. While in the great fish, Jonah prays to God in his affliction and commits to giving thanks and to paying what he has vowed. God then commands the fish to vomit Jonah out”.(Wikipedia

Jonah and the Whale by Pieter Lastman

Basically what this story tries to teach us is that Jonah had to be swallowed by a whale before he could “see the light” and be reborn. On a personal level, Jonah’s story always reminds me of a little saying that circulates among my friends the spies drinkers, “you will never know your truth, until the Serpent spirit devourers you and spits you back out again.

Serpent spirit by symbolika.com

The belly of Leviathan, Tiamat, the Queen Serpent call it what you like, symbolises the abyss we are standing in front of. Once swallowed or devoured by Leviathan and co, symbolises the full-on head jump into the abyss knowing that the only way through it is by looking at the raw guts of Leviathan and taking responsibility for our actions.

Time to take responsibilities

“I sense the available paths, the winds of the future, the winds of the past”

The realization or gnosis one undergoes in the belly of Leviathan directs us to a better understanding of the paths we already took and the ones that lie ahead of us. Once we open our eyes, and our truth has been registered within our body and soul, we become like undigested food in the belly of Leviathan waiting to be spat out like the precious Ambergris and reborn into a new reality, a new path.

“The one-eyed vision of the past, the one-eyed vision of the present, and the one-eyed vision of the future, all combined in a trinocular vision that permits me to see time become space.”

Reading these lines made me think of the Tower.  It is only now while writing this I can see the connection with Jez’s post about the Orfordness Lighthouse. The lighthouse combined vision is focused on the sea and on the West, guiding the ships ashore and lighting the way to those souls crossing the West Gate on their journey beyond.

For the Equinox rite, we decided to head west and visit the ancestral land of Glamorgan. The call of the western land was very strong this time and after driving for a couple of hours we stopped at our favourite beach. It’s the new moon and the tide is so far out it feels like we are strolling on an endless beach with no sight or a glimpse of the Celtic sea ahead of us.

I couldn’t avoid the eerie feeling while walking on that vast sandy beach. The landscape stretching to the horizon. At the back of my mind, a little question kept nagging me, would the sea ever come back? 

The Westcoast has its fair share of bleak and eerie landscapes but that afternoon on the eve of the autumn equinox, the beach felt more eerie than usual. Another thought crossed my mind; I came to look for Leviathan but instead, I probably will find a huge beach sandworm…

We walked along the deserted beach and before long we came upon a 19th-century Watchtower and immediately the pennies dropped and I saw the connection to the tower from Jez post to the tower card and the autumn equinox. 

The Watchtower is situated to the West, watching the rise of the tide, measuring its highs and lows, calculating the length of the days and nights, light and the dark. Tonight we will face the darkest of the moon and the lowest of the tides but tomorrow we’re gonna wake up into a beautiful balanced day and the west gate shall be opened.

The watchtower

The Tower

In the Thoth tarot deck, the tower card is attributed to the letter Pei – פ  which means a mouth(Peh-פ), it also refers to the planet Mars and as it happens, the autumn equinox this year falls on a Tuesday. Lady synchronicity pulling her strings again.

Let’s go back to the letter Pei and how it’s related to our equinox work and Leviathan. For a while now I wanted to share some insights which come to me while meditating and studying some of the popular and respected books in my own culture. 

“The letter Pei symbolizes the channel by which freedom would reign throughout the cosmos. It also represents our meditative channel for altering the future events of our lives. The letter Pei gives us the power to redirect our energies to higher, more productive states of consciousness and understanding, that yesterday, today and tomorrow, are all one and the same, once we released the limits of rational consciousness.” Rav Berg, The Energy Of The Hebrew Letters. 

 This made me think of  “The one-eyed vision of the past, the one-eyed vision of the present, and the one-eyed vision of the future, all combined in a trinocular vision that permits me to see time become space” (Paul Atreides, Dune, as mentioned above)

It is only when we unbind ourselves from the limitations of rational consciousness and understanding that there are alternatives, and different perceptions, our consciousness is altered and we start seeing/understanding/experiencing a new perspective of time.

By understanding the energy of Pei, the mouth, we are advancing into the highest level of our inner and encircling light/mysteries and awakening to the realization that we can challenge the authority of the cosmos and succeed in altering its direction. 

The understanding of the power of the voice, the spoken word, is ancient and probably exists since the beginning of time when we became aware of our voices for the first time. I don’t think I have to explain the power of the spoken word/s. We can make or break, bless or curse with our words. The written word is also very powerful, but we all know that to make it real, to have an impact, you have to say it out loud. Like praying, we can pray very quietly in our hearts but when we become the prayer we let it all out, we sing and we cry and we shout to our favourite deity, we let it all out by making a sound, by using our mouth. We make spells and release them by spelling out each word, sometimes each letter spelling it by using our words and whispers.                                                                                                The power of Pei פ.   

The realization of the magical formula that combines all the magical powers of the mouth into one letter – פ, it is quite amazing. The shape of the letter Pei resembles a serpent that hides its head within its body – פ, this, of course, made me think of the biblical Leviathan all curled up in the bottom of the sea waiting to be awakened. 

The destruction of Leviathan by Gustave Dore

The awakening of Leviathan can be linked to the destruction of the tower – the destruction of the illusion of the world and the matrix of ‘organized’ life which confined us. The swallowing of Jonah by the Leviathan symbolizes also the awakening from the illusion – the falling from the tower. The insight, the gnosis of new perceptions, a new reality, new life.

The letter Pei also symbolizes Malchut which governs the physical body just as the serpent that hides its head symbolizes the physical awakening of the body – the female genitalia can be symbolized as the mouth – Pei, while the man genitalia can be thought of the serpent, both are awakened within the kingdom – Malchut of the physical body. 

While writing this I find myself pondering how all this physical awakening stuff has got anything to do with the autumn equinox. So I set my time machine a few days back to Tuesday morning. This time we headed to a different beach, a secluded one, a quiet place for our annual season ritual. It’s a grey day and the beach is deserted. Unlike yesterday, the tide is not so far out but also not too high, the word balance comes to mind. The coastline looks wild and primal, we are the only people on the beach and we are looking for the best spot for the autumn equinox rite. 

I think we walked for about half an hour before we found the perfect spot. I must admit that rituals in nature are my favourite, no need for fancy clothing or an altar as each stone, tree or a flower can become the altar if needed, even better, We become the altar. Our mouth becomes the cup that holds within it the essence of the magic itself, the spoken words of the invocation or the spells we utter.

Facing the west we started with our invocation of Leviathan. Leviathan is a creature of the sea so to invoke it, it only makes sense (well, to me anyway) to invoke the ocean first. So we call upon the mighty ocean, asking to open up and show us the ways, hoping that our small offerings of coins and ancient prayers will awaken Leviathan, awaken us from another layer of illusion.

All through the ritual, the air was very still and quiet but as soon as we said our farewells and license to depart, a sharp cry and the fluttering of wings above our heads. I looked up and two magnificent birds were circulating above us, while at the same time a huge wave crashed onto the shore. I couldn’t avoid the symbolic situation and the line from Crowley’s writing about The Tower from The Book of Thoth crossed my mind: 

Bathed in the effulgence of this Eye (which now assumes even a third sense, that indicated in Atu XV) are the Dove bearing an olive branch and the Serpent.”

I don’t think the birds were doves and a whale (Leviathan in Hebrew means whale) did not jump out of the waters at that particular moment, but somehow we knew that our offering and prayers had been accepted.   

Not a whale in sight but a very cool spider web on the ancient rocks

Many thaks to Steve D for the inspiration. 

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