- "Alas, how easily things go wrong!
A sigh too much, or a kiss too long,
And there follows a mist and a weeping rain,
And life is never the same again."
Things do indeed go wrong very easily. We have only to glance away for a
moment, allow ourselves to be misled for that crucial instant, to fail to
recognize true friend or old foe's face behind the mask and life is never
the same again. A few steps down the wrong fork in the path can mean a very
long pisky-led journey back to somewhere else, for nothing stands still and
The Army of Occupation presently attempting to rule us through government,
scientific institutions and big business is a shadow army, an army of
Replicants who arrive by human aural nightlight. Sleight of hand and deceit
is the methodology for the unwary who are en-grossed in shadow puppet plays
enacted upon the political, social and televisual stages, applauding,
predictably re-acting, involving, opposing, even throwing the odd rotten
tomato or egg but BELIEVING the shadow play, taking it all for real, never
turning inward to find the source of the light that is casting the shadow,
never quite deciphering the particular quality and degree of light, never
clearly identifying the nature of the shadow.
Magicians, illusionists and conjurers enjoy a new popularity, appearing
and disappearing endlessly on TV, preparation for the Occult School of
Ahriman. So called 'Reality TV' presents simulations of life in 'real time'
to fill the hollows left by a deliberate extracting of the viewer's own
reality, making voyeurs instead of doers. Watch us, folks, we'll live life
for you! The All-Seeing Eye of the camera replacing the I of the human
Sleight of hand - the war is over there in Iraq. Don't look too closely
at the invaders in your own soul, your own country, city, schools
government. We are an occupied people. The players change places in the
dance, appear as their opposites. The war is here and now, the invasion and
destruction of Iraq is a projection, a foretaste of what is planned for all
What worked once will work again, the reasoning goes. People will not
notice the substitution, the illusion. Muslims are the new Jews. An 'Enemy'
is projected on the smoke screen of public consciousness, fundamentalism
deliberately fermented to create the necessary division, the esential fear
that inevitably and always leaps to attack in the wrong direction.
It is an occult invasion that we are facing, or trying to face,
attempting to confront: difficult, because it never meets us up front,
unmasked in honourable combat. This is an undercover army of Luciferic and
Ahrimmanic beings. A viral cold, impostured cancerous invasion of the
cell, a swarming bacterial fever of misdirected passion, fundamentalist
thinking, stoked and fired, stirred and concocted by those at home in those
shadows that attend the bonfires of hopes and ideals.
The Christ empowered I of the human being can turn the adversaries to good
account, and Rudolf Steiner gives techniques for this. Warmth and inner
enthusiasm, particularly for the lives and destinies of others, renders
Ahriman harmless and even useful. A cool, objective self appraisal puts
Lucifer in his rightful place, shedding light upon our failings, bringing
them into relief for our recognition. Casting valuable shadows.
Quite other trinities are possible and preferred by those invaders of
whom we speak. Lucifer, Sorat, Ahriman. Lucifer Asuras Ahriman. Asuras Sorat
Ahriman. There are various permutations and traps that lead not to the war
that is resolved in self hood but in the interminable war of all against all
in which all combatants are losers.
When the human being crosses the Threshold, he/she is his/her own light
source. Only by the light we have kindled will we be able to see. Which
brings us to the manifold world of shadows.
We have spoken at length about the harvesting of light - dark light,
fallen light, the armour of light etc, and worked with ways of raising and
redeeming - Light of Offering - 'Light that gives warmth to simple Shepherds
hearts, Light that enlightens the wise heads of Kings.' We tried to
differentiate between the different kinds and manifestations of light, to be
as precise as possible, as true as we can be. Never to become reductive,
never satisfied with one angle of perception.
I am glad that Bradford has brought George MacDonald forward, because
his work attempts detailed identification of and relationship with the most
diverse spiritual beings and entities. There is very much of value yet to be
harvested in George MacDonald's writings. They come from real experience.
Bradford speaks of the King of the Shadows, a fascinating short story
with many layers and dimensions. The relationship of human being to shadow
occurs often in MacDonald's work, notably in the novel Phantastes, an
account of Anodos's adventuring in Fairyland accompanied by his shadow which
becomes autonomous and distorting, a threat which is also recognized as a
necessity, but a necessity which breaks it's lawful bounds and becomes a
horribly destructive influence. The shadow becomes dangerous when it breaks
free of it's natural straight line directed by the sun,the ego, and swerves
to one side or the other....it brings death and dreary distortion wherever
"I stepped into the sunshine, and, looking over my shoulder, saw that it
(the shadow) lay yet blacker in the full blaze of the sunlight. Indeed,
only when I stood between it and the sun was the blackness at all
diminished......." end quote from Phantastes.
The spiritual sunlight passes through matter, and this is indicated in
the story by a lightening of the blackness because the spiritual sunlight is
revelation and spiritually informative. The Ego's own light modifies the
shadow. There are many layers in this story, many ways to understand it.
Quote - "I lay for an hour in a dull repose, and then got up to pursue my
way. The flowers where I had lain were crushed to the earth, but I saw that
they would soon lift up their heads and rejoice again in the sun and air.
Not so those on which my shadow had lain. The very outline of it could be
traced in the withered, lifeless grass, and the scorched and shriveled
flowers which stood there, dead and hopeless of any resurrection. I
shuddered, and hastened away with sad forebodings ....... One day, having
come out on a clear, grassy hill, which commanded a glorious prospect, my
shadow moved round, and came in front of me. And, presently, a new
manifestation of my distress; for it began to coruscate, and shoot out on
all sides a radiation of dim shadow. These rays of gloom issued from the
central shadow as from a black sun, lengthening and shortening with
continual change. But whenever a ray struck, that part of the earth, or
sea, or sky, became void, and desert, and sad to my heart.
On this, the first development of its new power, one ray shot out
beyond the rest, seeming to lengthen indefinitely, until it smote the great
sun on the face, which withered and darkened beneath the blow. I turned
away and went on....... Once as I passed a cottage, there came out a lovely
fairy child, with two wondrous toys, one in each hand. The one was the tube
through which the fairy gifted poet looks when he beholds the same thing
everywhere; the other that through which he looks when he combines into new
forms of loveliness those images of beauty which his own choice has gathered
from all regions where he has traveled.
Round the child's head was an aureole of emanating rays. As I looked at
him in wonder and delight, round crept from behind me something dark, and
the child stood in my shadow. Staightway he was a commonplace boy, with a
rough, broad brimmed straw hat, through which brim the sun shone from
behind. The toys he carried were a multiplying glass and a kaleidoscope. I
sighed and departed." end quote from Phantastes by George MacDonald.
We need the deadening effect of the shadow. Thoughts are Beings, and if
we did not kill them we would be overwhelmed and unfree. Ahriman casts a
Maya over the world, robbing it of it's spiritual reality, of it's light and
glory, making everything mean. But the mean is also the measure, the
balance which we must strive to attain by bringing light and shade into
Quote - "In a land like this, with so many illusions everywhere, I need his
aid to disenchant the things around me. He does away with all appearances,
and shows me things in their true colour and form. And I am not one to be
fooled with the vanities of the common crowd. I will not see beauty where
there is none. I will dare to behold things as they are. And if I live in a
waste instead of a paradise, I will live knowing where I live" end quote
from Phantastes by George MacDonald.
Nevertheless Anados realizes the dangerous distortion of his shadow, and
counters it by his own inner activity and the vigor of his Quest. We have to
re-enliven our thinking by our own engendered light. But we also cast
shadows, and these are many and various. Other beings cast shadows too. We
need to identify them. In The King of the Shadows we meet many shades. There
is recognition of the changed conditions in the ethers and etheric bodies
and the shades formed therein and projected without due to the use of
artificial light sources, fallen ethers and materialistic thinking.
Distinction is also drawn between shadows cast by inanimate objects and
living beings. Dark World Thoughts appear as sinister shadow beings with a
kind of egoic quality. Again, the shadows attempt to show human beings their
owns dark sides with the hope of correction and redemption.
Gandalf too raises his shadow facsimile, his flattened photo-copied faxed
thinking to sure-footed faithful steed in Shadowfax.
He plunges into the fission created fissure, confronts the Powers that
made humans into flattened shadows on a wall in Hiroshima, walks through the
Valley of the Shadow of Death, among the healing leaves of the Tree of Life
harvests Life Ether and brings forth the renewed Phantom, becoming the White
Rider. 'Who breaks a thing to find out what it is has left the path of
Jeru-Salem, city of Peace, is split by such a fissure in the earth, filled
by order of King Soloman when the Temple was built. A prominent mason is
said to have laid the foundation stone of the proposed new Temple. Steiner
laid the true Foundation Stone of the Spiritual Temple in the hearts of
Anthroposophists and hosts of the School of Michael, also present at the
In Phantastes Anados is pursued by Ash Tree, fallen Tree of Life, grown
rotten and evil, seeking always to feed on life of its victims. He too
journeys in the deep of the earth. Later in an amazing scene in the
penultimate chapter, Anados reaches the false Temple, where a benign and
proud being is worshipped, also feeding upon its victims. Anados, shadow
trained, alone scents evil with the sense that Brad mentions, although the
noble Knight Anados serves is too pure to recognize it, and throws down the
false idol, discovering the hollow tree within which is concealed the Wolf,
(we've met him elsewhere!) which he attacks and kills, himself dying in the
battle. Anados is placed in a coffin, a chest, a nutshell and buried or
planted. Here we have nut as chest, as coffin, as seed, as infinite
Quote - "I was dead, and right content. I lay in my coffin with my hands
folded in peace.......I felt as if a cool hand had been laid upon my heart,
and had stilled it. My soul was like a summer evening after a heavy fall of
rain, when the drops are yet glittering in the trees in the last rays of the
down-going sun, and the wind of the twilight has begun to blow.
The hot fever of life had gone by, and I breathed the clear mountain
air of the land of Death. I had never dreamed of such blessedness. It was
not that I had in any way ceased to be what I had been. The very fact that
anything can die implies the existence of something that cannot die, which
must either take to itself another form, as when the seed that is sown dies
and arises again, or in conscious existence, may perhaps, continue to lead a
purely spiritual life. If my passions were dead, the souls of the passions,
those essential mysteries of the spirit which had embodied themselves in the
passions, and had given to them all their glory and wonderment, yet lived,
yet glowed, but with a pure, undying fire. They rose above their earthly
garments, and disclosed themselves angels of light. But of, how beautiful
beyond the old form!......
Before long they bore me to my grave. Never tired child laid down in
his white bed and heard the sound of his playthings being laid aside for the
night, with a more luxurious satisfaction of repose than I knew when I felt
the coffin settle on the firm earth, and heard the sound of the falling
mould upon its lid. It has not the same hollow rattle within the coffin
that it sends up to the edge of the grave...." end quote from Phantastes.
In finding his Ideal, Anados loses the menace of his Shadow, returning to
life on earth a new man.
"Many a wrong, and its curing song;
Many a road, and many an inn;
Room to roam, but only one home
For all the world to win"
Not such a happy outcome befalls the hero in Hans Christian Anderson's 'The
Shadow' wherein a learned man becomes the servant and slave of his shadow,
which apes his humanity and weds the Princess, the soul, which is sharp and
clever and unwise, being fooled by the Ahrimanic photo-copy. The shadow
executes the man.
The King of the Shadows begins to take the shadow beings seriously when they
cap his words and questions with rhyme, bringing them into relation with the
rhythms which are the reality of the etheric-fairy realms. The learned man
in Hans Christian Anderson's story sends his shadow in to the realm of
Quote ³Poetry!² exclaimed the learned man. ³Yes, she lives as a hermit in
great cities. Poetry! Well, I saw her once for a very short moment, while
sleep weighed down my eyelids. She flashed upon me from the balcony like the
radiant aurora borealis, surrounded with flowers like flames of fire." end
quote from above.
One more poetic Curing Song from MacDonald.
"Be Thy heart a well of love my child,
Flowing, and free and sure,
For a cistern of love, though undefiled,
Keeps not the spirit pure."
In the unconscious will processes, overseen by the Trinity, we too live in
the sensitivity of homeopathic, bio dynamic trillionth of parts of
substances, in hormones, for instance. These physically minute quantities
are actually gigantic in their spiritual reality, rather as a butterfly,
seen spiritually, has the dimensions and appearance of an archangel,
although it is not an archangel.
We have spiritual senses that can be potentised by conscious work, made
reliable, and brought into play by which we can pick up and read the signs
of the times, the signs posted at the crossroads, at the fork in the path.
The dried, desiccated world of the too deadened dead is only refreshed by
the Living Waters that flow in endless abundance.