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QABALISTIC MAGIC ARTICLE LESSON 9: DAATH
© Copyright 2005, All Rights Reserved.
Image: Head with two faces, looking both ways
God Name: YHVH Elohim
Archangels: 4 Cardinals (Raphael, Michael, Gabriel, Uriel)
Virtues: Detachment. Perfection of Justice and the application of the Virtues untainted by personality or ego. Confidence in the Future
Vices: Doubt of the Future. Apathy, Inertia. Cowardice. Pride leading to isolation and disintegration.
Titles: The Invisible Sephira; The Hidden; The Unrevealed
Spiritual Experience: Vision across the Abyss
Symbols: Prism; Cell; Empty Room; Sacred Mountaintop, Grain
Magical Image: The Janus, Heads looking both ways, back toward the Supernals and downward toward personality-earth below.
Order of Angels: Serpents like the Seraphim, but not flaming
Considered the conjunction or union of Masculine & Feminine, Daath as actively worked on the Tree is fairly recent. Crowley suggests that it might be considered as a doorway to another dimension, and it can be used in this capacity to investigate the other side of the Tree, the Qliphothic. In placement it sits on top of the Abyss - that which separates the 3 Supernals (Kether, Chokmah and Binah) from the rest of the Tree, separating the World of Archetypes from the World of Form. Daath is where pure Force unites with pure Form - it is the child of Binah and Chokmah. Daath is the highest point of awareness of the human soul. Gareth Knight puts it well -"Before Daath the experience of a soul is devoted to bringing about a fusion of itself with the Spirit - to 'becoming'. After the powers of Daath are fully operative in a soul there is no further process of becoming for that soul 'is'." Will Parfitt says: "Chesed could be related to being and Geburah related to doing. Daath as the higher resolving factor which includes both being & doing can be termed becoming." Indeed, above the Abyss all that exists is in a state of Being, below the Abyss all is in a state of Doing according to which Sphere is being invoked. Daath is the synthesizing point. As Daath brings its energies to bridging the Abyss that separates the Supernal Triangle into the Lower Emanations it begins the process of manifestation into Malkuth. Above the Abyss this is definitely the Transcendent and Transpersonal - beyond who we know ourselves to be.
Daath is also known as The Invisible Sephira, the Sphere without a number. Some Qabalists say Daath is not one of the Ten Holy Emanations as the other Sephira are called, but a passageway, a gateway if you will. Others regard it as the 11th Sephira but in a special way - the Invisible Sephira. Crowley said that Daath was of a different dimension than the rest of the Spheres.
Daath is also regarded as Malkuth before its full manifestation in physicality. Its place is the original position occupied by Malkuth and it is the Spheres below the Abyss which give the various expressions of energy necessary to its manifestation.
The Image of the Head with two faces, or Janus-head, is appropriate for in Daath we look both forward and backward. We synthesize past, present and future, inner self and outer self, stripping away false knowledge and pride. Sirius as the planet/star associated with Daath is very interesting in light of the veneration accorded it by the Egyptians, Dahomeys and Apaches as a place where ultimate Wisdom resides. The virtue of Detachment indicates what is required in spiritual self-assessment as we seek to unify our mundane selves with our magickal or spiritual selves. Doubt as the vice of Daath shows how we subvert the process - by doubting the absolute divinity within us and the reality of Divinity itself.
The Spiritual Experience of the Vision across the Abyss highlights the nature of Daath. We are aware of and can see our way to unification thru its nature. And Daath's titles show that it is the Sphere which contains that spark of individual divinity which seeks to become One again with the whole, much like a seed of light nestled deeply within the darkness of the fertile Earth.
The Symbols of Daath are all metaphorical, for it is mainly a state of awareness devoid of symbols and the ultimate symbol of Daath has been considered by some Qabalists as The Complete Absence of any Symbol. However, in understanding its energies it can be useful to consider the symbols of the prism, the cell, the empty room, the caduceus and the sacred mountain top to all show aspects of Daath. The prism captures and refracts light and color - all energies are present here. The cell indicates the solitude of the initiate as does the empty room; the caduceus is a symbol of the balancing of opposing forces and the sacred mountain top is indicative of the crags hidden within the clouds where hermits dwell and wisdom is given.
Daath is also seen as the Birth Canal of Spirit, symbolized by the Star. Light as we know it shines from the Star but what lies behind it and before its birth was of a different nature before this birth of being into manifestation. This is the Birth of the Child of Force and Form.
Daath could be called the Highest Point of Awareness for the Human soul as a Soul of itself, for beyond Daath we enter the level of the Supernals. The Soul, having reached this state of consciousness, can remain to assist the planetary Hierarchy or ascend and move from this Dimension. Daath could be called the sphere of Realization and Illumination. This is the Creative Fire which Prometheus stole from heaven, and the Apple which was eaten by Adam and Eve.
The Knowledge we receive at Daath demands balanced and equilibriated use. It is said that to successfully cross the Abyss upon the Edge of the Sword we must keep our attention and consciousness perfectly focused on the White Sun of Kether. Upon contact Daath can lend to us balance, a sense of mission and a sense of destiny giving us sufficient detachment to cut through any obstructions to our aims and goals.
Daath also corresponds to the Throat and has to do with the expression of Spiritual Knowledge. The expression is either clear or distorted depending on how open the Daath center of expression is in the individual.
An interesting note in dealing with Daath as the bridge across the Abyss is the fact that many Qabalists have a certain fear in dealing with Daath. Perhaps this is because activating Daath is very demanding. The vision of Spiritual Truth can decimate the ego-personality's understanding of things. Daath is definitely a view from a different perspective.
Old Qabalists called the Abyss the "Masak Mavdil" meaning place for rejected failures, which was presided over by the Angel named Mesukiel, meaning the ?Veiler? of God. The teaching was that at least three previous Creations had been made prior to this one, and being unsatisfied with them, the Great One swept them away into the Abyss, which became a sort of cosmic waste bin. Very little is said, of course, in Orthodox religion at the possible fallibility of the Creator. This myth would be an admission that God makes mistakes. Also this tells us about a possible Dark Side of the Creator, a part of the Cosmic Unconscious which we might not wish to deal with ? the adage that you must be careful about that which you seek because you will most probably find it. The Cosmic Sewer doesn't sound like a lot of fun to me, so don't go fishing where you needn't .
This leads us to the concept of the Qliphoth,(Shells or Demons) the reverse side of the Tree, where dwell demons and disease. It is sometimes known as Universe B or the Tunnels of Set, as opposed to the Tunnels of Horus on the Front Side of the Tree. The Vices of the Sephiroth can be linked to the Qliphoth, but the Cosmic Sewer system also works as a view of vice ? becoming embroiled in the dark side of things for subverted ego reasons.
It is best in dealing with Daath to remember human pride, and remain humble in your seeking to a certain extent - to invoke Shakespeare's ?more things dreamt of in heaven and earth than are dreamt of in you? philosophy.
Gareth Knight suggests working with Isis mysteries as a positive and surely enhancing encounter with the Daath energy. Her mysteries also have to do with the star Sirius which is often given as the Mundane Chakra of Daath. Isis ties into the path of the High Priestess who is often depicted as Isis who bridges the Abyss.
Daath is a sphere in the Making, the original place of Malkuth on the Tree. The Fall spoken of in the Old Testament is not the Fall of Man but the Fall of God to gain Knowledge thru experience. All of our life experience builds the Light of Daath.
Suggestions on experiencing the energies of Daath:
- Meditate on paths 13 (High Priestess) uniting Tiphareth & Kether and 14 (The Empress) uniting Chokmah & Binah.
- Meditate on what seems to separate you from your true Self. What aspects of personality are prevalent in this separation?
- Where and how does ego tend to trip you up? What are your fears and doubts and what are their foundations?
© Copyright 2005 Jeff Harrison and Karen Charboneau-Harrison, All Rights Reserved.