Monday, January 24, 2011

Priestess of the Purple Ray

Here's another figure from the Seven Rays of the later Theosophical tradition. The Purple Ray, known to inheritor groups as the "Violet Flame," was regarded as the most powerful, spiritually developed, and holy of the Seven Rays, because it was at the highest frequency of visible light and close to ultraviolet. Modern esotericism co-opts the language of science in a way that makes scientific types cringe. It is always talking about "frequencies," "vibrations," atoms, forces, and radiation, as well as using the ubiquitous term "quantum." This language is meant to give esotericism a "scientific" quality, whereas in reality, esotericism is a mythology. Some scientists are esotericists as well. I don't know how they do it.

Priestesses are also thought to be more powerful and spiritually developed than mere priests, who are considered sorry types lost in dogma and rules. There are schools of esotericism, though, which adopt an ultra-traditional Catholic expression, complete with elaborate priestly vestments, lines of ordination, and High Mass said in a dingy apartment living room with bemused cats looking on.

The "Priestess of the Purple Ray" is acrylic and mixed media on illustration board, 7" x 10", February 1990.

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