Having no actual table of correspondence to work with for Daath makes it a challenging issue to address for me. In my studies of late I have gathered a few correspondences for you which I will try to present here. Since very little of easy access is available to us on this it is probably the one area of the Tree we can truly help each other to develop. I will lay out a table of correspondence for you as I have in the other spheres before it and would ask that you all help to fill in the blanks as much as possible. The reason for my question regarding is Daath a sphere or a pathway will become clear to you soon I hope. According to my studies so far Daath has no deity name, no angelic host or any element attributed to it so I have removed these from my list. The Magical Image and Briatic Correspondence I have left in place for everyone else to mull over. As I have said these are my own opinions of correspondences, I have found few definite ones so I am forced to come up with my own. Feel free to add your own I will explain my reasoning for each correspondence after the list as I try to explain the paradox which is Daath. As a fore thought I will add here that this being such a paradox, don't worry over much about understanding it. We can't, but it helps if we have a vision of what this sphere can be so that we understand the transition from Binah to Chesed better.
Magical Image: Name of Power: Yod.
Planetary Attribution: Pluto.
Virtue: Knowledge. Vice: Superiority.
Titles: The Abyss, the Void, the Beautiful Path, the Knowledge, the Unknown. The
Spiritual Experience: Realisation of Consciousness. Experience of Attachment and
Symbols: The black hole. A bottomless chasm.
Precious Stone: Obsidian.
Plant: Wormwood, mugwort, psyclopian mushrooms, yew.
Colour: Matt Black. Animals: Raven.
Illusion: The illusion of Attainment.
From the outset when I first looked at a glyph of the tree I noticed a gapping huge hole between the three supernals and the next trinity. Having neither a sphere in the middle or a pathway to traverse from Binah to Chesed how did the soul find it's way? Why was there this apparent gap in an otherwise neatly ordered glyph. Everything else had a natural chain of events but here there was nothing. If you look at most other glyphs you will see what I mean there is a gap a big hole that no path crosses and no sphere fills. Then I came across another image it showed a blank sphere, nothing written in it, no correspondences for it not even at this stage a name. I looked into it further, not having access to the internet at this time made my search difficult but since I can never stand to leave a puzzle undone I was persistent. Eventually I found a name for this sphere, Daath. I found reference to it in of all places a Tarot spread, in this spread it was an 11 position in a Tree of Life spread and represented possible future outcome. Positioned as it was in the gap between the top and middle triangle I knew this was the sphere I was seeking to gain knowledge of. Now that I know that Daath is also known as knowledge I find my searching for it quite ironic for what I was seeking was exactly what Daath is . Finally equipped with internet access I began the search in earnest . Here I smile because if you ever want to get a computer headache type in the word Daath to a search engine and just wait and see what it throws out at you. "Daath, do you mean Death?" it asks, how on earth can I answer it might well be a dead sphere or even a sphere of death for all I know. Next question "Daath, do you mean Darth?" well you can guess where that search ends can't you? Just a little side note here the word Darth Vader actually could be made to fit quite well with this sphere since Darth or Daath can mean death or dead and Vader is Dutch for father. Put them together and what do you get? The Dead Father hehe, enough of my Star Wars geeking back to the tail. Countless Star Wars related links later I give up that angle and type in Qabalah and lo and behold eventually stumble upon a glyph that shows Daath. Oh and what a paradoxical little sphere I discover it to be. It's the unknown and it's knowledge huh? How can that be I wonder? It's the beautiful path but it is a sphere so which is it? Now I realise I've opened myself up to a whole world of confusion that web pages just aren't ever going to help me understand this paradox. I needed help on this I needed someone who could help me understand it. I sent out PM's to every person I found who mentioned the Qabalah here. Eventually I had a few answers back and finally I found someone to talk to about it (Thanks you know who you are). Since then I've begun to build up a table of correspondences that seem to fit with me and other people I have discussed them with who have a fuller understanding of Daath.
Facts about this sphere are sketchy at best when coming down the tree the soul has passed through Kether, Chokmah and Binah and it now enters Daath. Daath is the Abyss, it is a paradox being a sphere yet not a sphere a pathway that is not a pathway at all. But the soul must pass through it in order to reach the next stage of development. This is the reason I chose the symbol of the black hole. It is just that, a black hole which nothing can enter without being totally transformed. When the soul passes into Daath it is stripped of everything it has gained so far. For the soul this is not all that hard, so far it has gained very little having only experienced three of the spheres it has only a small amount of structure to lose when it steps into the void of Daath. When it steps out of Daath it is stripped once more of its force and form thus Daath is a reflection of Kether. It is also the reason why I chose Obsidian as the stone for this sphere. Obsidian is a breaker down of structure. When we return back up the Tree this breaking down is needed for us to pass over into the triangle of the Three Supernals. Not only is a braking down but it is also a braking through so that new structure can be formed. Once it leaves this sphere it moves on to Chesed and gains new fresh force. It is Daath that prevents us from knowing what we were before our spirit became manifest in our bodies. The process of the braking down in Daath is so utter that our souls forget what they once were. Despite being this once the new soul emerges out the other side of the abyss it is reborn a new, like it was before in Kether.
Having crossed the river Styx it once again has awareness, it maintains little of the previous force and form given to it previously but it is more complete and more aware than when it first emerged at Kether. Now it has awareness, drive, form and knowledge from the trifles it has been through in crossing the abyss.
When a soul journeys back up the tree if we take for example the life of a man. In Malkuth he is a baby just venturing out, Yesod an adolescent, Hod and Netzach are where most of us spend our 20's and 30's, Tiphareth is 40's to 50's and Geburah and Chesed are our latter years. Daath to the life of a man is death. This is also why we do not know spirit form. Once we step out of life into Daath everything is stripped away, a much more drastic oculance this time for much more of a structure has been given. In the form of spiritual enlightenment, to step into Daath came be mistaken for attainment for it is total knowledge (the reason for my virtue) and a reflection of Kether this was why I chose attainment as the illusion. In the case of a person who has mental trauma Daath is the nervous brake down, but it is also a brake through. Daath has it's most dramatic effects in the case of the psyche. When a person has reached the end of the line there is no other place to go but into the abyss. Here we face our fears, our doubts and our hopes and dreams. Such a paradox is Daath that it is impossible to fully explain it for it is never truly there and yet it is, everything and nothing once again.
Let me tell you a little story my Mam told me about a man who went a journey, he walked for many hundred miles until he came to a vast chasm. The chasm was so wide he could not see the other side, it was so deep it stretched down into inky blackness. The man took a rock and tossed it into the chasm, it fell and continued to fall out of sight into the darkness, he waited a while but never heard it hit the bottom it was so deep. Now it so happened there was a rope bridge crossing this abyss, but the ropes were frayed and rotten and the planks were missing in some places and broken in others. To get around this chasm would mean many hundreds of miles back tracking. The man puzzled should he take the dangerous bridge or should he not? He was quite naturally fearful to take this obviously precarious step. As he thought an old, wizened, crippled and lame lady came limping up towards him. She smiled up at him and bid him good day and bright blessings and with out a care stepped out across the bridge and disappeared from sight. What the man learnt from this was that the hardest and most dangerous path was the one the weakest must tread for weakness is the mother of strength.
The reason I chose Yew as a plant it is the tree of death and rebirth a dual concept which is in itself a paradox. The others reflect on the poisons we must fill our bodies with to walk the path of Daath in this life time. The planet of Pluto for it's links to the Persephone story and the raven for it's dual meaning of wisdom and death. Odin's ravens are a classic example of why I chose this bird for this sphere.
That is really all I can tell you of Daath, for those of you who are familiar with the Tarot, though it doesn't fit here on the tree I give you the example of the Tower. A total ripping apart of the structure we have erected. A devastating, cataclysmic change that strips us so totally of what we have built up but the soul remains intact and must journey on a new. Daath is a true paradox, it is both there and yet it is not. In answer to my original question is Daath a sphere or a path way? I must answer with a paradox, it is both and yet it is neither. Don't wreck your heads trying to understand this sphere to much, just be aware of it's presence like a shadow that is always just at the corner of your vision when you turn around to look at it full on it wont be there.
Magical Image: A mighty crowned and throned king. Name of Power: El (God) Archangel: Tzadkiel. Angels: Chasmalim, the Brilliant Ones. Planetary Attribution: Jupiter. Virtue: Obedience. Vice: Bigotry, hypocrisy, gluttony. Titles: Gedulah, Love, Magnificence, Majesty. Spiritual Experience: Vision of Love. Deity Colour: Deep violet. Archangel Colour: Blue. Angel Colour: Deep purple. Planetary Colour: Deep azure-flecked yellow. Symbols: The solid figure, orb, wand, the tetradon, sceptre, crook. Deities: Benevolent ruler gods: Zeus, Jupiter, Indra, Amoun, Osiris, Odin as lawgiver, Nodens,etc. Precious Stone: Amethyst, sapphire, lapis lazuli. Plant: Olive, shamrock. Perfume: Cedar. Animals: Unicorn. Illusion: Self-righteousness. Obligation: Humility. Briatic Correspondence: Authority. Tarot Suit Number: The Fours.
Chesed is the second sphere on the Pillar of Force; it is the first sphere to represent actual physical force. Its names of Mercy, Grace and Gedulah all symbolize its greatness. The benevolent ruler gods who find their home here are the likes of Zeus, Jupiter and Osiris. Chesed ruler planet Jupiter is the Expander in astrological terms. It is benfic, easy and peaceful. Often referred to as The Hall of Masters or the Sphere of the Adepts, Chesed provides help for those in difficulty. According to tradition here the souls that have reached a certain stage of development stop, by choice, and stay in order to help those still struggling to grow. These souls are referred to as Ascended Masters, or Ancient Ones. With its magical image of a wise and kind king, Chesed is both king and father to its people. Chesed is the builder of industry, the fosterer of learning, a patronizer of the arts and a nurturer of order after the chaos of Daath.
When the soul journeys down the Tree is has gathered together understanding, force, form and knowledge, once it reaches Chesed it learns love, humility and obedience. Like a soothing balm upon the burns sustained in Daath Chesed eases the soul of its suffering and nurtures it onward in its path to manifestation. Applying just the right amount of authority to send the soul on its way, Chesed gives its gentle push. When the soul makes its return journey Chesed feeds it with a vision of beauty, of love and peace. Like a breath of fresh air for stifled lungs, Chesed lest those who reach it soak in is beauty. The magical adepts who reach this sphere are given the title of Adeptus Exemptus. It is doubtful that many can reach such an elevated status in life, but not for the first time impossible. With its virtue of obedience this is not a blind obedience of a slave but that which has been learnt through proper teaching. Western esoteric law teaches the student to obey without question and without the thoughts of the self. It is through this teaching the student learns independence and logical thought, skills which eventually lead to the students own responsibility for their own spiritual advancement. The spiritual student must bring about their own advancement and through doing this they learn a natural form of obedience for they learn to do what is expected of them. It is in this learning experience we can witness how it is possible to go so wrong as to acquire the vice of this sphere. When we have gained mastery over ourselves it is easy to look down upon those lower than us with bigotry. Chesed when perverted is corruption of power and tyranny. Likewise the illusion of this sphere as self-righteousness can easily be absorbed by those of lesser character who think they have obtained a status of grandeur above and beyond all others. The obligation of Chesed is called upon heavily in these cases. Humility is required in equal parts to balance out the negative force. An understanding that we are no better and no worse than anyone else but are equal to all, helps ease the sting of Chesed's bigotry.
The Chasmalim, or Brilliant Ones are the angels of Chesed led by the Archangel Tzadkiel. This group of angelic creatures are considered especially helpful to those who have suffered from instability be it mental, spiritual or emotional. With their nurturing love they easy the suffering of the tormented soul. The unicorn as Cheseds animal gives contact with the unconscious mind. It aids the journey into the darkness of Daath. Chesed to me is the calm before the storm and the lull after it. The pouring of cool waters over the boiling turbulent seas. It nurtures and loves without discrimination. All are equal in the eyes of Chesed, all will be provided for and all will provide.
Magical Image: A mighty warrior in a chariot. Name of Power: Elohim gibor, Mighty God/dess. Archangel: Khamael. Angels: Seraphim, Fiery Serpents. Planetary Attribution: Mars. Virtue: Energy, courage. Vice: Cruelty, wanton, destruction. Titles: Pachad, Fear, Din, Justice. Spiritual Experience: Vision of Power. Deity Colour: Orange. Archangel Colour: Scarlet Angel Colour: Bright scarlet. Planetary Colour: Red, flecked with black. Symbols: The pentagon, the sword, the spear, the scourge, the chain, the five-petaled
Deities: War, protector and avenger deities, smith and forge deities: mars, Ares, Bran, Brigid, Minerva/Athena, Kali, the Morigan, Lugh, TubalCain, Vulcan, Hephaestes, Ningurs, culan, Odin, Vali, Pyerun, Indra, Lei Kung, Okun-Nush, Huitzilopochtl.
Precious Stone: Ruby. Plant: Oak, nettle. Perfume: Tobacco. Animals: Basilisk. Illusion: Invincibility. Obligation: Courage and loyalty. Briatic Correspondence: Power Tarot Suit Number: The Fives.
The mighty powerful sphere of Geburah with its names of fear, judgment, Din and Pachad can be a harsh and stark opponent to its peaceful partner on the Tree, Chesed. It is not however as malefic as it may at first seem. An easy life with no hardship, no trials and all wishes fulfilled may appear to be a blessing to most, but it contributes little to the growth of the soul. Though we can not be expected to give a joyful welcome to the trials we must endure, we must accept them as life's lessons and learn to assimilate what each hardship contains in order that we might grow. No longer may we cry into the darkness "Why?" for Geburah gives reason to every thing. Though we may not understand the lesson when we go through the trials with hindsight eventually we emerge a stronger and more powerful being. Do not be afraid of the influences Geburah brings into your life, they are an integral part of the workings of the divine and are as necessary to all existence as the soothing balm of Chesed. Possibly the fear in this sphere would be better expressed as awe. Imagine the feeling you experience when viewing a natural disaster or a force of nature at work. It is that feeling you get when you watch a volcano erupt, or the emotions stirred when you see the before and after pictures of some cataclysmic event. This is the true definition of the words "God-fearing", not the abject terror of a power that can strike you down, but the full comprehension of its true enormity and might.
With its magical image of a mighty warrior in a chariot Geburah is the warrior queen. While the benefic rulers of Chesed nurture, the warrior of Geburah defends and punishes. This is the ancient king who stands before his soldiers and leads them as they charge into battle. Egyptian Pharaohs carried a crook and flail; the crook to guide their people and the flail to punish the transgressors. Here is the understanding of the need for balance between the two pillars and between the two spheres of Chesed and
Geburah in the rhythm of life itself. With its ruling planet of Mars Geburah can represent destruction and the breaking down of form. When the structure has become too rigid and with little to no flexibility it cracks and breaks down. Consider the Grand Canyon, the results of millions of years of wearing down, of destruction of form; is this not a glorious thing? The Great Fire of London is another example of Geburah cleansing might. Though the destruction to life and property is terrible to contemplate, the fire destroyed the rats whose fleas carried the great plague that threatened to wipe out so much more in the long run. In more modern times we may consider the taking down of the Berlin Wall, the braking up of the U.S.S.R. There are a myriad of difficulties for the struggling countries to overcome but they will grow and gain their own independence in time.
Geburah happens inside us, all around us, it is a natural force. Every time we eat Geburah takes place in the digestion of our food, the breaking down of the form to extract the energy required. The earthly tree that grows in its proper season and in autumn changes colour. The leaves die and fall to the ground, they break down, become part of the earth once more and nourish the very tree that gave them life. This is nature's way with Geburah. It strengthens feeds and provides through destruction.
When we die and our bodies are placed into the ground so the cycle of Geburah begins again, but our culture is fearful of Geburah. We embalm, we cremate and in doing so we deprive the Earth of the minerals which are rightfully hers to claim. When we block Geburahs actions in the world at large we cause the blockage to build up, grow and eventually explode into war and tyranny. It is in this instance we understand the gods and goddesses who reside in this sphere. Mars and Ares, gods of war, Minerva and Athena who were warriors in defence of the wronged, Kali who presides over the destructive force of nature. Smith gods who pound away at the shape of the iron in order to break down its present form and create anew. Set in his role as Desert Storm God blowing the sands to blast things clean.
Chesed's idealism is balanced by the realism of Geburah. They are latent and kinetic energies that resound in life, the Universe and everything. Together they build up and ebb away like the waxing and waning Moon. Always consider the one with the other if you wish to understand the both much deeper. Here is nothing in nature without balance and there is nothing in life without both Chesed and Geburah.
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The pathology of the poet says that the undevout astronomer is mad the pathology of the very plain man says that the genius is mad and between these extremes, which stand for ten thousand analogous excesses, the sovereign reason takes the part of a moderator and does what it can. I do not think that there is a pathology of the occult dedications, but about their extravagances no one can question, and it is not less difficult than thankless to act as a moderator regarding them.