Tag Archives: clouds

A clap of thunder at that instant shook the castle to its foundations; the earth rocked, and the clank of more than mortal armour was heard behind. Frederic and Jerome thought the last day was at hand. The latter, forcing Theodore along with them, rushed into the court. The moment Theodore appeared, the walls of the castle behind Manfred were thrown down with a mighty force, and the form of Alfonso, dilated to an immense magnitude, appeared in the centre of the ruins. Behold in Theodore, the true heir of Alfonso! said the vision: and having pronounced those words, accompanied by a clap of thunder, it ascended solemnly towards heaven, where the clouds parting asunder, the form of saint Nicholas was seen; and receiving Alfonso’s shade, they were soon wrapt from mortal eyes in a blaze of glory.

Horace Walpole, The Castle of Otranto

Hermetic quote Walpole Otranto clank

We know that on some summit, far away

We know that on some summit, far away

Within the Soul, a beacon-light uplifted

Makes on the mountains round eternal day;

By its bright beams the clouds beneath are rifted,

And for awhile is glorified the grey

Life-sea, whereon so long mankind hath drifted;

That single will oft new strength create,

And then the Spirit conquers time and fate.

 

To all at times these golden glimpses come;

The clouds roll back; the deep, supernal blue

Is arch’d above those mountains like a dome;

The revelation of the great and true

Comes with those glimpses from the Soul’s far home,

And the Soul knows her lineage and her due;

But most have striven to reach the source in vain

Whence come those beams, or bid their flash remain.

 

Yet for life’s fever and the mind’s disease

The only refuge for the world is there;

Before they reach it none can taste of ease,

There all are sphered beyond the range of care;

Wrecks toss’d in scorn upon the scourging seas,

Our sails are set to find a haven fair,

But, from those mountains shrinking, still we strive,

And drift for ever where the winds my drive.

 

We dream of islands lapp’d in amber light,

Of pleasant groves and wilding woodland bowers,

Where morn unclouded follows starry night,

And starry night on evening’s pensive hours;

We see no beauty in the frowning height—

That awful altitude the mind o’erpowers;

Yet the Soul’s home is in its purer air;

Soul-glory, majesty, and might are there.

 

But there are many, could they see their way,

Who would the summit by their toil attain,

Who not in vain would pour their lives away,

Achieving conquests for their brethren’s gain;

But whom doubt weakens, who in tears delay,

And contemplate life’s spectacle of pain;

Who to do something yearn, yet pause and ask

Some high encitement to so hard a task.

 

And therefore have we written, O man, for thee

The book that follows, here its plan proclaim—

Help for thy Soul—help that the soul may see

In evil days her best, her noblest aim,

And ever faithful to that end may be,

Though faith should fail, though truth her hope disclaim.

And, ‘mid the general lapse from light, may find

No impulse left for the exalted mind!

 

What inspiration from the heaven came down

To fill the brain? What angel bade us write?

Oh, in the green fields, in the crowded town,

And in the sunshine or the starry night,

Those thoughts descended which in Soul are sown,

And ripen’d in us, as the flowers in light—

Their strength supports us, from the ample store

We scatter; may they number more and more!

 

Oh, may this book, by our own heart created,

Be life in all to whom its dream is told—

To draw the world up God’s steep path be fated,

Till all the splendid prospect shall behold,

And on those heights all Souls be reinstated,

From which perchance they lapsed in days of old;

Or those attain whose altitude till then,

Though dimly dream’d, was never known by men!

— A E Waite, “Proem” from Azoth, or the Star in the East

 

The Hermetic Library arts and letters pool is a project to publish poetry, prose and art that is inspired by or manifests the Western Esoteric Tradition. If you would like to submit your work for consideration as part of the Arts and Letters pool, contact the librarian.

The Deeper Symbolism of Freemasonry from The Meaning of Masonry by Walter Leslie Wilmshurst.

“In symbolical language, the N. always signifies the place of imperfection and un-development; in olden times the bodies of suicides, reprobates and unbaptized children were always buried in the north or sunless side of a churchyard. The seat of the junior members of the Craft is allotted to the north, for, symbolically, it represents the condition of the spiritually unenlightened man; the novice in whom the spiritual light latent within him has not yet risen above the horizon of consciousness and dispersed the clouds of material interests and the impulses of the lower and merely sensual life.” [via]

Synthesis in The Gate of the Sanctuary from The Temple of the Holy Ghost (Collected Works, Vol I) by Aleister Crowley.

“Then I perceived the stars to reflect a single sun—
Not burning suns themselves, in furious regular race,
But mirrors of midnight, lit to remind us of His face.
Thus I beheld the truth: ye are stars that give me light;
But I read you aright and learn I am walking in the night.
Then I turned mine eyes away to the Light that is above you:
The answering splendid Dawn arose, and I did not love you.
I saw the breaking light, and the clouds fled far away:
I was the resurrection of the Golden Star of Day.
And now I live in Him; my heart may trace the years
In drops of virginal blood and springs of virginal tears.” [via]