Interglint - King Chestnut Starred
- One backward glance at summer for friends who have asked.
Riding Mobility Scooter Starlight Express this summer past on the 'Northern
Heights', those hills of North London which are said to call to one another
across the rooftops; when traveling the 'Holy Hill of Alexandra Palace' I
notice on looking back that I never take a direct route. Passing Bird Gate
that opens onto the park, I detour beneath a row of mature Horse Chestnuts,
awake to blowbreeze in branch, to bright and light interglint of shadow,
taste of air, ever asking 'Who goes there?' turning cheek to face of Day for
kiss of kin.
At the far-beginning of the Chestnut row is a Portal, if one has the sense
for it, that leads more truly into the Park than man made Gate can ever do.
Here is King Chestnut, Ur Chestnut, Culminating Chestnut, Tree of Trees,
Royal Troubadour Tower to the singing Thrush pair that raised their
nestlings safely here this spring.
Beneath Lord Chestnut, I do not at first presume to look up. Homage is
best offered in receptive silence; the first inner response is one of
infinite peace, a quickening stillness that has no quarrel with the complex
and perpetual movement of the tree, the ever shifting relationships of shade
and sky, the lay of leaf on leaf, formflow of sap, invisible wend-rivers of
cool air..... Then deep awe quiets the mind and gentles the heart to
ache-receptivity. Because heart must crack before entering counter-space of
tree-held hollow, break to enlarge, suffer in empathy, in humility, knowing
oneself undeserving recipient of generous bestowal that is hallmark of
And looking up.... What is it really, this great green hill, this
densely shaded cavern of swaying leafy branches, vast crowned dome of deep
black shadow and streaming, flowing coolness, this living, hollow hill,
secret wellspring of vital power? What is it really? It is Initiation
Vault, open secret, holy mystery center in profane world. If one has the
sense for it.
If not, it is an old Horse Chestnut swaying in the wind.
And looking up.... High, highest above, set in very Crown of Royal
Chestnut Cavern, in the deep blackness of this morning-night interior sky is
one single brilliant Star of purest light, a space between the leaves where
dazzling sunshine has formed a five pointed form of radiance, lambent,
clear, intensely purposed. This is a real star, a star to navigate a day, a
star safe to steer by. It matters that the leaves whose absence form it are
Chestnut leaves, juicy, fat-sap filled on this remembered June day, dark and
heavy, yet light-ether serrated, spread in gesture of open hand and yet
enclosing shadow, masters of darkness, bearers of light, whose incensed
blossoms are upheld candles, uplit flowers...
From this non existent Portentous Star flows a blessing of light, long
gleaming spear, smoky blue against the black of massed foliage.
I think of Goethe and Theory of Colour.... I think of Light, the Light of
the World, shining in darkness, forging a Way, cleaving a Path.... yet
gently, so gently, harming none, silently.... Everything Transient is a
Parable. Heart flip of undeserved joy.
I remember a lecture by Rudolf Steiner, Evolution, Involution and Creation
out of Nothingness. Must study it further.
The Christian Initiate purposely gave that lecture at the end of a cycle,
when people were to break for the summer, for, he said, the thoughts and
concepts are so profound that a long period of reflection is necessary to
absorb and comprehend them. The lecture needs to be read in sequence and in
full, but still, we can take something from quotes. The concepts are indeed
great, alive and healing, pointing as ever to the boundless, creative
potential and power of humanity that will bring forth something entirely
new, going beyond re-cycle to re-source.
Rudolf Steiner 'Suppose you see a man standing opposite two other people.
Let us take into consideration everything that belongs to evolution. Let us
take the one who is observing the other two, and say to ourselves that he
has passed through earlier incarnations and has developed what has been
planted in him in these previous incarnations. The same applies to the
other two people.
Then let us suppose that the first man thinks to himself; The one person
looks splendid beside the other. He is pleased to see just those two
particular people standing together. Another person may not feel this
satisfaction. The satisfaction the man feels in seeing the two standing
side by side has nothing whatever to do with the possibilities of
development of the other two, for they have done nothing that deserves the
pleasure their standing together gives him. It is something quite
different, and it depends entirely on the fact that it is he in particular
that is standing opposite the two people. The point is that the man
develops a feeling of joy over the two men in front of him standing
together. This feeling is not caused by anything to do with development.
There are things like this in the world that arise simply through
coincidence. It is not a question of the two men being karmically
connected. Our concern is the joy that the man feels because he likes
seeing the two people standing together.
Let us take a further example. Imagine a man standing here at a certain
spot on the earth and looking up at the sky. He sees a particular
constellation of stars. If he were to stand five paces away he would see
something else. This looking at the sky creates in him a feeling of joy
that is something quite new....... Man is concerned with a lot of affairs
that have nothing to do with his previous development, but which are there
because various circumstances bring him into contact with the outer world.
Because he feels this joy, however, it has become for him an experience.
Something has arisen in the human soul that is not determined by anything
preceding it but which has arisen out of nothingness. Such creations out of
nothingness are constantly arising in the human soul.' end quote from
Evolution, Involution and Creation out of Nothingness. 17 June 1909
And looking in.... I knew that silver-blue slant of not-starlight, falling
benevolent upon personal destiny would illumine a new path of work, reveal
fresh ground to furrow and seed with think stars. The Archai bide on the
far-side in-side of such portals, wait upon our creating. To them is
offered what humanity adds to hierarchical wrought works by perceiving them,
by bringing them into relatedness, adding human joy, a heart flip, a purely
unique consciousness, an individual and personal congruity. From them in
return streams potential of heavenly Converse by night, job offer of future
The beloved Dead sang, rhyming softly down the starry light-line. Christ
is Lord of Karma,' they sang, and so, however difficult, however seemingly
intractable, however hopelessly knotted, our personal karma can serve
universal brotherhood, be transformed, be of service to all mankind. The
Dead stream endlessly into our world, into our consciousness through
human-nothing-creation, seek our co-working, our clarifying of their past
fragmented work, work that was squeezed, perhaps warped a little, distorted
by social conditions prevailing in their lifetime, by personal flaws or
failures and the limitation of thought forms available to them. The Dead
invite us to partake in their ongoing life, their future incarnating, revise
their work, take their impulses further. Offer them, altared, to the Lord of
I knew that it would take awhile to disentangle their spheres-song from
the soughing wind in the air orchestrated trees, that it would take time to
hear most clearly. Best to leave it, best allow it to settle in the soul,
sleep soft pillowed upon it, let it 'wait upon the Lord' Best to note and
And passing on through heliographic Star Space, I came into the Park by
Bird Gate, spoke Pass Word, was admitted to outer chamber of Inner Hill,
rode through land scaped by Faery. Now everyone was in Character. So there
before me on the bench by the lake was Old Tom. In his eighties, Tom played
the vagrant; shabby, tall, thin, his clothes crumpled and unkempt, his
straggled grey hair at odds with shrewd eyes above lumpen nose.
Incongruously, at his feet, lay an old blind dog, well fed, sleek, obviously
We are in Faery, but in or out of Faeryland the true explanation for such
incongruity between animal and master is that Tom is actually a millionaire
and though careless of himself, loves his dog Trix most dearly. Blind Trix,
keen nosed, scented Friend and came to meet me. With concern, I noticed
that Tom was struggling for breath, holding his chest and unable to gasp a
greeting. Tom is on the last lap Home, suffers from a severe heart and lung
condition and is subject to occasional black outs.
Taking a tobacco tin from his pocket he rolled a scrawny cigarette with
hands habit-sure but shaking. Dubiously I asked, as he lit up, 'Is that a
good idea, Tom? Should I phone for some help and get you home?'
Drawing deeply, a more healthy colour returned to his face, and he managed
to speak. 'That was a bad one. No. Its all right. I been smoking since I was
eight. I'm so addicted I'd die if I stopped. Only man in the world with a
doctor's letter to prove I got to smoke. Keep it here, in my wallet."
Jerking a thumb skywards he shot a look up. 'Its Him!' he said accusingly,
'Sending me postcards. Wish you were here. Telling me get ready for a trip.
Warns me I'll be traveling light.' As the thin cigarette flared and burned
down between stained fingers his breath steadied and we conversed, Trix
settled her head on my lap as I scratched the favourite spot behind her
Tom is eccentric in the old English tradition, a very wealthy
artist-philanthropist who part-owned a large construction company and got
his hands dirty in real work, engaged with rockface, dealt with London clay,
knew treachery of sandy soil, underbubble secrets of water table, all the
hidden seams and springs beneath the city. Tom tells most interesting tales
of the problem ground beneath particular buildings and roads of Britain and
how he solved such challenges, intricate stories of pumps, of reinforcing
concrete, aggregates, bore holes, even of erecting Palaces in the Arab
Emirates; long, detailed sagas about foundations, stresses, exactly how the
land lies, how buildings rise or fall. I love to hear these builder's
tales. Love listening to a man of long enriched life experience, a man
flamed and fired by ideals who has a deep love of and detailed interest in
other human beings, sympathy with their trials, faith in their potentials,
with a special tenderness for the young. Tom is one who always asks the
question 'Brother, what ails Thee?', and tries to respond practically and in
Acerbic, gruff, astute and very shrewd, Tom flows with human-kindness. He
founds and funds many social initiatives, from playgrounds to art centers
and sponsors several charities, making sure that they can stand and
withstand, that their foundations are as secure as possible. I cannot
broadcast the details of his extraordinary life story, given in confidence
in odd moments of meeting, but can say that true to Faery Tale, Tom is
Younger Son born poor and orphaned in infancy, gifted or cursed with the
Midas Touch. Every single thing he touched turned to gold. He fell into
pots of gold, bubbled up in bullion, scattered it profligate and it returned
tenfold, gambled it and always won, drunk it, squandered it, fled it,
surrendered to it, served it, repudiated it, dismissed it, and yet it
pursued him, banked him, gilded him, chequed him, but never quite spent
In his youth he played with it, in his prime he turned and pursued it,
multiplied it, engaged with it but never quite fathomed it, enjoyed it but
never quite believed in it. In old age he was always scraping it from his
shoes, shrugging it from his shoulders, emptying it from his pockets,
shaking it out of his hair. Faery-wise turning gold back into straw, sowing
it broadcast, planting it in unlikely places, setting it free, letting it
live, flow and enable, not weight, paralyse and encrust.
Could he, like his namesake Tom Bombadil, carelessly toss false golden
coin in the air, spin it and turn up heads you win Tom! And Sol-laced,
immune, pocket it only to give away? (What does Mystery Tramp have in his
pocket? Only a hole ..... only the ever empty far.) Pocket it and stride
rich but unfettered along o' Sun-ethered New Brotherhood of Man, always
giving, enabling.... founding, funding, building, unscathed? No, not quite.
That is not quite how it went. Humans are not there yet. Tom fell often.
Has his flaws as we all do. We are all scathed by Ahriman. It is not so
easy to break the sticky web of finance, as hard to live with too much money
as it is impossible to live without it within our present fake
polito-financial paradigm. Money has suspicion-narrowed Toms eyes, skewed
him just slightly. Worn him down if not out. Bent his back a little, as if
it bears heavy sack of loot. Charity, however freely given, is still not
the answer, still does not make either giver or recipient really free.
Scrooge increased Bob Cratchitt's salary, gave him Christmas goodies, but
did not free him or enable him to set up a business of his own. Perhaps
Scrooge was transformed, but was Bob?
And I thought of Ahriman's counterfeit, his materialized copy of creation
out of nothing. Fools gold, fractional reserve banking, fiat money, debt.
Quote from 'Summer Time Ends' John Hargrave - 'Sir Otto could not cast
free altogether from the never ending intertwining fabulation in which he
was entangled and lost and which he was forced to help to spin: an invisible
web of nothing out of numbers, by numbers, in high financial fantasy for
ever tumbling down as it was built up in staggering piles of debt
invisible except to the mind's eye
an astounding world game of 1, 2, 3 - out goes he! (bankrupt!)
the game went on all the time - nothing could stop it - and every second
its conjurations reared a cipher city of dangerous nonsense called Sound
at one moment it would look like a boggart eldorado fashioned, in the
flick of an eyelid, of rare materials
sea spray, silica and gold dust
changing shape by numbers
by numbers bursting into bubbles
each one swirling up, up, like a spiral stairway blown in liquid air,
unfurling, blossoming into eccentric and enormous glass orchid convolutions,
alive, palpitating, quivering by numbers
a complex calculation of numerical relativity, relating to nothing but its
own cipher sequence
beautiful and sinister, the whole working a-widdershins
and all by numbers
all unseen: a secret growth
a colossal interpenetrating fungoid fragility of meaningless figures
springing in sterile grandeur from a bed of bar gold buried in vaults
this all sounds so fabulous, so bogus that we have to pinch ourselves to
be quite certain we are in the wake world and not fallen into some infernal
is it possible that this tall, severe, cultured and eminently hard-headed
man - Sir Otto, economic adviser to the Bank of England, member of the
International Standing Committee of Economic Experts, author of
'Fluctuations in the Post War Credit Cycle,' 'The Effect of Gold Shrinkage
on World Price Levels,' and several other standard works - is it possible
that he and other men of equal intelligence were (and are) as seriously
concerned in maintaining this preposterous fabrication as other men in
hewing coal, building sea-planes or growing marrows?
there is no doubt of it
except for moments of relaxation Sir Otto gave his whole time and energy
to this unbelievable business
and yet to look at, you would say he was level headed, sane and practical
as most men. Perhaps he was. Nevertheless, his life was given to creating
out of nothing, by numbers, an infinitely involuted and delicate (in the
sense of invalid) mechanism of financial futility, spreading over the whole
world, throttling, thwarting, frustrating
like some hideous weed it fed on the venomous dew of false confidence
(thereby destroying all confidence and itself) and broke into glittering
bunches of hard, brittle, hollow fruit that cracked asunder and were gone
the whole phasma transforming, revolving backwards, breeding swarming
millions of nought-maggots, foaming into nonsensical statistical foliage
sending out credit-tendrils that became at once serpent debt-suckers
wrapping around human existence, slowly strangulating human activity
by numbers alone
by the numeric cult of Hi Fi Numbo.......' end quote from 'Summer Time
Ends' John Hargrave 1935
'Do you want to go to a Garden Party?' Tom asked me suddenly 'Meet Her Maj?
I still get the invites... Done a lot of work at Buck House. And there's me
"Not my thing, Tom,' I replied 'I'm one of those 'rebellious Scots' that
get crushed in the last verse of the National Anthem. She'd probably lock
me in the Tower. Trix is a great Lady, take her to meet the Royal Corgies.'
'She's been twice,' Tom said, 'I got photos.'
'I'm surprised you've not been Knighted, Tom.' I said 'haven't they
offered you a gong?'
He snorted. 'Four times' He made a rude gesture. 'Gongs! Its Him,'
looking skyward again, 'Its Him that matters. Him that wants answers. Wants
to know what you've made of life. What good are gongs to man nor beast?
Won't cut any ice with Him. Lord this, Sir that. Look at those kids' -
pointing to a group of schoolchildren - 'They got nowhere to get a drink of
pop. Bloody Council shut down the Café I used to fund. Not enough
lavatories and won't let us dig a pipe trench across the field for new
'The trouble with getting old,' he went on 'Is that they keep bossing you.
Don't let you do things. They won't let me drive any more. Took my license.
Its true I black out sometimes....'
'You have a driver, Tom,' I reminded him.
'Driver! I've been driven all my life. I like to drive myself. I'm
getting one of those things' pointing at my mobility scooter, 'Custom built
with a bed for Trix on the front. We'll head off somewhere, you too....
We'll escape. I own a Lighthouse..... we could make for that.'
'You are a Lighthouse Tom' I said, and waving, rode on, following a non
existent and shining Star.
And looking back..... there was Tom, opening his tobacco tin with Trix at
his feet, great London Plane Tree behind him in swaysong, list'ning,
sol-surplus radiance haloing, crowning him with gold. Heart flip of joy.
Creation out of nothing.
Rudolf Steiner 'Creating out of relationships is called in Christian
esotericism 'creating out of the spirit.. And creating out of right,
beautiful and virtuous relationships is called in Christian esotericism 'The
Holy Spirit'. When a man is able to create out of nothingness the right or
the true, the beautiful and the good, the Holy Spirit fills him with bliss.
But for a man to be able to create in the sense of the Holy Spirit, he had
first to be able to be given the foundation, as is the case for all creation
out of nothingness. The foundation was given him through the coming of
Christ into our evolution. Through experiencing the Christ Event on Earth,
man was able to ascend to creating in the Holy Spirit. Thus it is Christ
Himself Who creates the greatest, most profound foundation. If man becomes
such that he stands firmly on the basis of the Christ experience, and the
Christ experience is the carriage he joins for his evolutionary progress,
then the Christ sends him the Holy Spirit, and man becomes capable of
creating the right, beautiful and good in the course of his further
evolution.' end quote from Evolution, Involution and Creation out of
Nothingness 17 June 1909
And we're not there yet, but can ponder this deepest of thoughts while
creating out of relationships of wrought works as we go along.....
Riding alongside the lake accompanied by a Dragonfly that flashed in and
out of sun dazzle visibility, now light rippled, now a-lighting on
flint-sparkle stones of similar hue. Interglint. Heron floated on a
descending spiral of air high over the water. Still higher, a straight
tracked plane screamed, scarring the sky. Flight, flight and flight.
Anti-gravity darting, effortless floating, polluting roaring-scoring.
Separate, related only in human observing, human rejoicing. Creation out of
nothing. Heart flip.
And thought of the young and homeless of London, the very many who huddle
in shop doorway and on church steps, begging, threatening, drugged, drunken,
struggling, arms around stray dogs who are the only reciprocating love focus
of their lives. A new phenomena in this City, not one I knew as a child or
in my youth. And thought too of the many who can no longer afford to live
here, the young and not so young workslaves who are crippled by debt,
extortionate rates of rent or impossibly high Mort-gage, working ever longer
hours, deeper and deeper in debt. Hi Fi Numbo. Prey of Ahriman's parody.
Quote from 'Summer Time Ends' - 'a man may die of old age, of hunger or
thirst, sicken of some plague and waste away..... Collapse from
heart-failure, drown, be burned to death, freeze, fall of a ladder and break
his neck, be bumped off, hanged, electrocuted, poisoned, run over by a bus
but to waste away and die for lack of numbers
lack of money... strange...... very odd indeed
yet if you can see through the superstructure of debt-credit-loans: if you
peer closely into it (but don't, don't!) you will see at the base of it a
gigantic and horrible rubbish dump of needless human misery, want and agony:
half starved and empty bellies, suicidal tendencies, phobias, choking lungs,
blinded eyes, nervous wreckage, shattered limbs, disembowelled entrails,
blown out brains, moans, cries (stretcher bearers! stretcher bearers!) and
every kind of psychological disintegration and decay
this real nightmare, the result of a banking system turning real wealth
into financial debt'' end quote from 'Summer Time Ends' by J Hargrave 1935
And riding on, through glint in Eye of Day, passed into Green Time and
accompanied by Oaks, followed High Road atop the Hill and came to Old Jack,
sitting lordly, straightbacked, with a radiant health and energy much
younger men might envy, on his favourite bench observing his City, his own
Old London, the Great Wen laid out in panoramic sweeping view before and far
Tom is millionaire vagrant. Jack is pauper King. With scarce a penny to
his name he has sovereignty, presence, somehow is always Sol-vent. His the
view and the over-view, the weather, the church spires, cranes, and the
River. The great City and all its past is his. More, he is utterly self
possessed, strong, wide awake. Old Millionaire Tom knows how to found, to
sustain by founding, how to lay sure and lasting found-ations. Tom knows
what lies beneath, knows about costing, financing, supporting and
maintaining. Jack knows about horizons, distances, what the sky is saying,
travel as travail, how yesterday will affect tomorrow. How it came to be
today. Jack, too, tells a tale worth the hearing.
He waved and I drew alongside.
'Lovely day, Jack. Will the sunshine last?' He gestured to a purple
ridge miles away rising above the office blocks and towers of city become
streetmap 'No, not if those hills are visible. It'll cloud over tomorrow.
Make the most of today.' I nodded. Weatherwise, Jack is always right.
We settled to talk, our London strewn untidily over the hills below us,
light glinting on toy car windscreens, flashing sudden sunblaze from tall
glass buildings, those great monstrances of architect-Ego'd office blocks,
hideous Temples of Hi Fi Numbo Finance, dwarfing the church spires.
And I heard how Jack had been called up as a young man, to fight the war
that was none of his making, had traveled the world and danced the
quick-Mort-step with lightened feet, wondering how it was that somehow,
while those beside him fell, he was always spared...
'There were eight of us, and one of us had to run through sniper fire to
deliver a message to another group, holed up they were. We had eight
playing cards and one was the Ace of Spades, the death card, we called it.'
'Not aces high, then Jack?'
He frowned. 'The death card.' he repeated. 'And I drew it. I ran through
the snipers and nothing hit me, but minutes later a shell hit the seven
mates I left behind and killed the lot of them. Fluke. You got used to that
kind of thing. Sheer fluke, Happened all the time.'
So Aces were high. I remembered a poem my mother used to recite.
'They met death face to face
And passed the time of day.
Death said 'Immortals these!'
And went his way.'
He went on to tell of how he had survived the torpedoing of a ship, and
then moved on to Palestine at the time of the founding of Israel. Jack was
with the British Army.
'I been all round the world.' He said. 'Traveled to most places. And
I'm not religious. But its a funny thing. There is something about that
place, the Holy Land as they call it, something about the actual earth,
right in the soil, you might say....... Something I can't describe. But its
there all right. If anything was going to happen on the Earth, anything big,
anything real, anything Holy, If a God was born, then it would have been
there. It felt to me like the center of the whole earth.'
And passing on, with a backward smile and wave, I saw Old Jack, Sol-itary
King of his Hill, with straight spine and eyes that had out stared death,
reading tomorrow from the pattern of today, harvesting the past, making
suresense of it for the future, alone and most certainly 'in the wake
Rudolf Steiner - 'The Christ Event has given man the greatest thing
possible, the power that makes him capable of living on into the future and
of increasingly creating out of relationships, out of all that is not
pre-determined, but depends on how man relates to the facts of the world
around him, which is in the widest sense the Holy Spirit. This again is an
aspect of Christian esotericism. Christian esotericism is connected with
the profoundest thought in the whole of our evolution, the thought of
creation out of nothingness.
Therefore no true theory of evolution will ever be able to leave out the
thought of creation out of nothingness. Suppose there were only evolution
and involution, there would be eternal repetition like here is with the
plant, and on Vulcan there would be only what originated on Saturn. But in
the middle of our development creation out of nothingness was added to
evolution and involution. After Saturn, Sun and Moon had passed away,
Christ came to Earth as the enriching leaven which ensures that something
quite new will be there on Vulcan, something not yet present on Saturn.'
end quote from 'Evolution, Involution and Creation out of Nothingness' 17
And hear with joy Harvey's call hitching a ride on the Trade Winds across
the Pond, 'All debts are paid!'
Jack, the bench, the hill, the sky, dear Old London....... Creation out
of nothing. Heart flip.