Trees of Eden: A Map of the Fall [Part II]
by A. C. George
In the last installment we described the fall in terms of the symbolism of the Tree of Life of QBLH. Of the sephirot, we noted the fourth was the most likely to be displaced- to become the tenth. Correlating the two models- the 2D Tree of Life and the sephirot of the SY- we note that the fourth sphere of the tree map (from the top) is also the fourth reckoning among the list of ten presented in the SY. The fall among the reckonings leaves us with the fourth process becoming the last, leaving a gap between the third account and the fifth where the sealing of the directions of space occurs. The displaced reckoning involved the power of ignition, represented the power of authority (MLKVTh) the aspirant awakens and applies at that point. After the displacement that power was associated with the Kingdom (MLKVTh) itself rather than the power of the throne itself. It’s like saying the world followed its own rules when humans lost the power to cultivate its authority.
The two models I am correlating describe the same thing from differing premises. Because of this, any change in one map correlates with a change in a parallel change in the other. A revealing application is to take a concept from the SY, such as the depths (OVMQ) of the sephirot, and project it onto the 2D Tree mapping. The affliction upon the (human) fabric of existence can be outlined and one can observe how it has distorted and still distorts evolutionary potential.
The immediate result of the disruption is the divorcing of TVB from RO, and the displacement and subsequent misrepresentation of the mystery (depth) of RO. With the latter displacement the sphere of TVB is left without any sort of reference through which to balance the Covenant. Instead, the sphere of ignition and of the depth of RO– according to the SY- is identified with the worldly state of the subject as well as the world itself. RO (Resh.Ayin.) translates as the view-point of another, who can be a shepherd or guide- for better or ill- a friend or a foe. As the depth of the world it describes an alienating and chaotic place. In terms of its associations with the human microcosm it describes self-alienation and internal conflict as the earthly state of awareness.
The aforementioned diagram (above) depicts the veritable gulf between the upper three sephirot and the remaining seven. The former are contemplative stages in the abstract sense, involving the cultivation of the proper frames of awareness and the required themes of focus to do so. The original final six sephirot involve the sealing of the directions of space. This is not viable, however, without the sphere of power associated with the depth of RO, the sephirah that was supposed to precede them. That pivotal sphere of power, unfortunately, was moved outside the original bounds of the Tree-form.
This analysis, by the way, does not involve pathworking practices of popular modern western occultism. Those would have a starting point in the worldly awareness of the fallen tenth sphere, followed by a progression through the twenty two relationships between the ten spheres of the Tree of Life from highest to lowest number. The ten sephirot as reckonings of esoteric wisdom, on the other hand, are serially progressive and do not involve relationships between them outside their sequential order. In addition, they progress from lowest to highest number. The bottom-up model, furthermore, treats the state of awareness that corresponds to the first three sephirot, as the aim of practice rather than its prerequisite. The bottom-up approach of working the tree leads to divine awareness, while the top down approach can access that very awareness we need to ground for the alchemy to lead to powerful magical application potential.
To reiterate, the fall in the context mentioned here involves removing a fundamental part of a ten-fold alchemy, the part where ignition takes place- and place it at the very end of the sequence, misrepresenting the sequence as a whole and either neutralizing or perverting it. Ideally one progresses to the point of applying a high state of contemplative awareness to the sense of one’s life force and mental will so as to directly connect it to structuring the space around one’s body. This subtle energy structure was, furthermore, meant to be the basis for ignition. Being without the latter would akin to sucking on an unlit cigarette and calling it smoking.
Yet, until the real thing is demonstrated or experienced somehow- until one acquires intimate knowing (DOTh) of the act, the faux process can be convincing in its compromising effects. In this case, the simple correction would be to replace the fallen tenth sephirah in its fourth position. However, regarding the SY, there is no correction because there is no fall indicated in that presentation. One simply follows the reckonings in order. We examine the fall because it is theme that reflects the state of current humanity. In that sense taking the sephirot in their original order has the implications of rectification and reclaiming one’s power of divine authority, something that comes along with the requisite mystical states of awareness the contemplative practices in the text strive to actualize.
With that in mind, let us triangulate our correlations with the biblical account regarding The Tree of Life in relation to the fruits of the Tree of Knowledge. In the QBLH map the Tree of Life has a sphere displaced, something that alters the very shape of the Tree, so that it can be associated with the very different Tree of the fruit of Knowing TVB and RO. The pivotal statement regarding the relationship between the two Trees is implied with the words of YHVH ALHIM in Gen. 3:22:
“Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil. Now, lest he put forth his hand, and also take of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever…”
It is noteworthy that the word for Tree (OTz) and that for Spinal Column (OTzH) are quite similar, to the point that one might be an allusion to the other. The third and fourth reckonings of restraint are about what the corresponding depths attempt to inspire when subjects of contemplation. In that context, the third depth (TVB) hints at the favorable conditions to establish a medium of containment (a kind of subtle body), whose weaves and flows support the housing of one’s presence. The fourth is about the ignition of that medium to activate the patterns of Ruach (mind-energy) as one’s own friends and allies. After the fall, this ignition never occurs. The impulse has become a dense and stubborn territory known as matter, and all the rest of the sephirot remain unprocessed (to use a potentially misleading yet adequate modern term).
It is tempting to suggest that the cultivation sequence of the reckonings will not be effective unless one somehow addresses the issue of one’s capacity to manifest events in creation- to perform magic in other words. This is not what is being implied. We are rather pointing out a block to higher awareness that can be directly addressed through persistent cultivation practice. The fall tells us that is that we need to forge a path between the state of existence based on worldly experience and the state of grace marking unconditioned human potential. This time, however, the state of grace will not be based on innocence, but on the very experiences that led to being deprived of grace in the first place.
I choose to look at the statement of Gen. 3:22 as prophetic. To move toward the Tree of Life, however, we must place the mysteries of TVB and RO side by side to complement each other. They are not antagonistic in this view. In the world, both states are needed and the awareness of when and how to express or work with one and/or the other is the profound wisdom one needs to first open to primordial consciousness as the SY describes it, and to bring that consciousness into the focused application known as magic.