Tuesday, February 28, 2017



Layers of Onians

The seat of consciousness
resides in the blood and the breath.
These represent two states
of one substance.
The heart and the lungs are
way stations of this current,
propelling its vitality throughout
the whole body. But essential is,
in the words of Rabelais,
the entire "miraculous network."
Breath always includes emotion, bodily
movement, rhythm, ideas, memory;
every aspect of conscious thought
and experience.
Blood is breath in liquid form.

We breathe with each of our senses.
The eyes breathe in colour and images.
They breathe out their own focused
vision, felt often as a force
-- the sense of being stared at.
The nostrils play an obvious role.
The ears also breathe in and out
vibrations carried by the air.
Touch and taste depend on the
small breaths of each pore and bud.
And so breath always contains
colours, images, odours, textures,
temperatures and tastes.
These are continually and synesthetically
melded together as one sensation
for each breath.

No analytic separation ever experienced.
Combined always with emotion,
memory, thought and movement
forever churning in measure and proportion.
This is consciousness, thumos, vital breath,
active in the body, but not exclusively.
The breath of one mingles with the
breath of all, the breathing
of all bodies at once.
The miraculous network extends
through animals, plants, fungi, water, rocks.
The anima is never without the anima mundi.
At death our breath returns to
this greater network.

Breath exists yet also the shadow.
Call this the psyche, or even the unconscious.
The soul, the seed, centred in the head.
And in the sap and the vapour of the
cerebro-spinal fluid running in subtle
channels within the marrow of the spine
to the organs of procreation,
and on down through thigh bone marrow
to the lower pockets of seed in the knees.
Down to the hooves and up to the horns.

Fat, tears and sweat glisten with its
potency, urine also without doubt.
The staff of Hermes, the path of Kundalini.
The living Tantra of the West
brought to an end only by the
devastation of the Thirty Years War
and the "Enlightenment."
It is the psyche which lives on
in dreams and death.
The unseen source of both
procreation and creation.

It extends also beyond the body
to saps & juices & oils & unguents
of every consistency.
It runs with all rivers.
Encircling Okeanus, the oldest river
and serpent, entwining around
the Orphic egg of the world.
Panoriginal psyche, the aeon
of each single life and the
vast cycles of the multitude.

Hen and Herb

There exists an ecology of becoming not just at the level of the material, from the perspective of samsara, but also from this level to the most refined and rarefied realms of spirit or nirvana. The two are but two poles of the same dynamic system, two "poles" which intersect and interpenetrate at every moving point. These are Yeats's tinctures of primary and antithetical -- both inaccessible to human experience -- and between these are gradations and combinations of the two which are also omnipresent.

These gradations or inner layers have been symbolized variously in many traditions. They appear as the chakras, as the spheres of the planets and the fixed stars, as the spiraling upward rings of purgatory, as fairy land, as lands of myths and fantasy, as hurqalya, as the mundus imaginalis, as the anima mundi, as the world of the creative imagination.

As in Neoplatonic philosophy, pure matter is really equivalent to pure spirit. And yet our understanding of the two is different. Matter contains no awareness while spirit possesses infinite awareness. Alchemy is a process by which matter is increasingly refined and made subtle through a process of mind.

The visualization of, and identification with, deities in Tibetan Buddhism is a type of internalized alchemy. The Christian heresy of docetism comes closest to this. Christ is the prima materia, both matter and spirit and so neither. He is imaginal, crucified and resurrected with every perception and breath, waxing and waning like the moon.



  1. ive been 'thinking' about breath over the last few years.
    my findings are as follows
    1) the inbreath is will the outbreath is surrender.
    2)The Sacrament is whatever sanctifies the Moment. Charges the breath. Seperates, marks out, elevates.
    3)there is a biting point between in and out will and surrender, domain of Flowy Zoe, or Tao. Everything happens at the point at which each balances the other. /\ here
    4)at either end, force and quietism, is impotence
    5)will becomes force becomes coercion becomes rape becomes fascism
    6)this applies to coercion of self as much as coercion of others. pride in the held breath. self-bullying is not self-mastery. The refusal to exhale, the foregoing of sensuality. Pride in self-mastery and the domination of others.
    Fascism is a holding of the breath.
    and as a footnote
    Within the infinite shadings of tension and release, will and surrender. The inbreath is a sucking at the nipple. Warm, enveloping, humid, close, hot colours, oranges, reds, CARNATION PINK. This is the erotic world of everlasting delight. Squirming, sliding, very lovely and lubricious. BOTH MEANINGS INTENDED.
    Yet! When I asked them, who is the puppeteer who pulls the strings? Who is behind the RED VELVET CURTAIN? I arrived instantaneously in a White, bright, Nordic bath house, mind was very clear with the white steady flame of Intellect. THERE ARE OTHER WORLDS.

    lots to think about there as always
    it's a thankless task blogging, hard not to feel your throwing words into a big hole in the ground and covering it over with dirt. I'm glad you're persevering. Yours is the best blog I know of at present.

  2. Many thanks, Heronbone. Comments like yours (a rare thing, too) are what make it all worthwhile. Actually I'm happy to write and only wish I had more time to do so. I've got a stack of notebooks that nobody has ever read/will ever read, so even if a few people really read my posts it is more than I hoped for.

    I like the distinction of will/inbreath and surrender/outbreath with the Flowy Zoe(!) dancing between. That is exactly it. Both ends of the sphere are snipped off while the current flows inwards then outwards like a fountain. The shifting middle zone of breath/sound/image/word is where it all takes place.

  3. Delightful as always.


    You could say, the inhale is the intention or "in-tension".

    See Reichian breathing exercises, teaching people how to exhale properly.

    As for other worlds, I've seen it too. I had it presented to me as the Reality Selection Screen - a sort of menu for the video game of life.

    1. Breathe in the suffering and samsara of this existence. Breathe out nothing but cool blue goodness, follow your outbreath to the end breath, the now, ok now do it again and again. The more we breathe with mindfulness, the more compassion and loving kindness we offer. Always come back to mindful breath. Om Mani Padme Hung. 87

  4. there are other worlds they have not told you of! Sun Ra said it and he weren't lying.
    I know a Reichian, I must ask about those. There's indubitably a species of breath magic but it's among the hardest to master, given that breathing is an automatic process. It's like trying to straighten your posture, next thing you know you're slouched and slumped and don't remember where the change happened. It's all hard work and the investment of time and if anyone tells you different they're trying to sell you something in my view. Auto-hypnosis is a dud deal.

    i know what you mean about the menu. isnt it interesting. some paths deepen the very colours. the question perhaps is whether the capitalist consumer outlook, ie, buy it, use it, toss it away, buy a different one, is the wrong model to apply here
    that endless prevarication and flitting one to another is self-defeating

  5. Am curious to know what the title and 'onians' are alluding too. Flew right over my head that

    1. "The Origins of European Thought: About the Body, the Mind, the Soul, the World, Time and Fate"