My Cosmic Family

Make of this what you will. It is the unvarnished teaching of the mighty Mazatapec mushroom, a good example of the profound sense to be found in nonsense on psychedelics. Particularly striking is the intermingling of the personal and the transpersonal, the familial and the cosmic, and the importance of names.

The Virgin Mary is the Mother of God and the Queen of Heaven. She is the Ultimate Source of All, the Mother of the Universe, the Womb of Existence. She is the Tao.

The Tao is called the Great Mother:

Empty yet inexhaustible,

It gives birth to infinite worlds.

Tao Te Ching 6

The Tao is like a well:

used but never used up.

It is like the eternal void:

filled with infinite possibilities.

It is hidden but always present.

I don’t know who gave birth to it.

It is older than God.

Tao Te Ching 4

It is the mother of the universe.

For lack of a better name,

I call it the Tao.

Tao Te Ching 25

The Virgin Mary is both the mother of God and the mother of the son of God. She created God out of herself (which is why she is a virgin). She is both older than God and greater than God. She is “the God beyond God”, or rather the Goddess beyond God.

When people imagine how Jesus was conceived, they think in terms of Greek myth. Zeus takes a fancy to Danae for example and comes to her in the form of golden rain, getting her pregnant with Perseus. However, this has it backwards. The Virgin Mary is not one more attractive young maid that God fancies, like Leda, Europa or Io. This is not about a randy God having his way with an unusually pretty mortal. The Virgin Mary is the Tao.

This is where it starts to get a bit weird. The real mother of Jesus, Son of God, is the Great Mother, the Tao. And the real father is . . . Saturn. And the Son of God is the Sun of God. Saturn is the Father, the Sun is the Son, and Earth is the Holy Spirit. But it gets even weirder: I am Saturn; my eldest son is the Sun; his brother is Mercury; and his younger sister is Flora, goddess of the flowering of plants, or life on Earth.

The brothers are in a yin-yang relationship. Think of an image of the planet Mercury in front of the Sun. It appears as a small black dot in front of a large white circle. This is one half of the yin-yang symbol. The other half is a large black circle with a small white dot. Too much sun is destructive. You end up with drought and desert. No clouds and everything dies. Clouds cover the naked power of the sun and produce life giving rain. And my second, mercurial, son is called Claudio, or “cloudy” for short.

Brotherly love brings peace and harmony. The authors of Genesis understood this. And they understood how it can go wrong. Think of Cain and Abel, Isaac and Ishmael, Esau and Jacob. Finally, with Joseph and Benjamin, the archetypal brothers are reconciled.

Raphael and Claudio are a symbiotic balance of light and dark, heat and coolness, dryness and moisture. Too much of one and the Earth is scorched. Too much of the other and it is flooded. The great flood in Genesis 6 – 9 was the result of too much Cloud and not enough Raphael. The global warming crisis we are going through now is the opposite, although it swings between extremes, with both wildfires and floods becoming more frequent and extreme.

The brothers must look after their little sister Flora. My brother in Chile tells me the trees are dying because of a terrible drought. It hasn’t rained all winter. Flora is life. She is Shakti to her brothers’ Shiva. She needs both sun and rain. And on a personal level, our own water tanks should be neither too full nor too empty (but that’s another story to do with a leak on my narrow boat and a Jewish friend staying on it who’s been made temporarily homeless because her basement flat was flooded in the July downpour).

Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune are “gas giants”. They are full of themselves but have no real substance. These are the pagan gods (Jupiter is Zeus). The real God of our Solar System is not Jupiter, but Saturn. Saturn’s consort is Pluto. Pluto was originally one of the moons of Saturn but escaped Saturn’s orbit and became a planet in its own right. This is the meaning of Eve being formed from a rib taken out of Adam’s side. Saturn and Pluto are somehow also Adam and Eve. And my Eve is Rachel, who left my orbit when we were teenagers.

The protagonists in this little family drama then are Saturn (me), Pluto (Rachel), the Sun-Mercury dyad (Raphael and Claudio) and Earth (Flora). Then there is the Virgin Mary, mother of Raphael, Claudio and Flora (Rose). The gas giants, Jupiter, Uranus and Neptune, are the “boomers”, that is, my parents’ generation. Jupiter is the dead and dying paterfamilias (my father and father-in-law).

Now, the Virgin Mary, as the Queen of Heaven, is in fact represented here on Earth by the Queen of England. She is the synthesis of two roses, the red and the white. The red rose is represented by the Catholic Queen, Bloody Mary. The white rose is represented by the Virgin Queen, Elizabeth I. The white Virgin Queen and the red Queen Mary fused together form one Queen of Heaven, the Virgin Mary. The War of the Roses, between the houses of Lancaster and York also represents the fundamental conflict between the red and white roses. Lewis Carroll may have been alluding to this when the Queen of Heart’s ordered her soldiers to paint the white roses red in Alice in Wonderland and pitted the Red Queen against the White Queen in Through the Looking-Glass.

There are many other examples of this conflict. For example, the White Army and the Red Army in the Russian Civil War, and even the football rivalry between Arsenal (red) and Tottenham Hotspur (white). (Rachel’s family left Russia before the civil war because of the pogroms of the late nineteenth century, subsequently siding with the reds. Also, her father’s side support Arsenal and her mother’s side support Spurs.) Ultimately, it is only the miraculous activity of the Tao that can heal the split and put an end to the perennial conflict raging in the heart of human consciousness. This is the infinite mercy and compassion of the Virgin Mary.

Catherine Rose, my ex-wife and mother of my three children, is the granddaughter of the Earl of Longford. Her family is historically connected to the English royal family (Kitty Pakenham was the Duchess of Wellington). Catherine Rose, historically through Kitty (short for Catherine) and dialectically through the reconciliation of the red and white roses (Catholic and Protestant, Left and Right, etc.) is the nexus through which the Tao of the Virgin Mary flows.

One important take away from this train of thought is that we should honour our Queen, Elizabeth II, because she is the earthly representative of the Queen of Heaven. (I won’t go into the significance of the Sex Pistols and Freddy Mercury here, because it will take me even further off topic). She represents the ultimate womb of creation, the Tao, the mother of God. And she is the head of the Church of England.

So anyway, back to the Solar System. The two planets conspicuous by their absence in the story so far are Mars and Venus. Mars is the red planet and Venus is the white planet. Mars is the red rose and Venus is the white. They are Earth’s neighbours, and just as all the other neighbourly conflicts of red and white (all the way down to the North London derby), they must find a peaceful balance and coexistence. Otherwise the Earth gets caught in the cross-fire.

Flora, the goddess of the flowering of plants, needs to be protected from the destructive energies of Mars and Venus. Luckily, she has her brothers to look after her. It is the job of Raphael and Claudio, the Sun and Mercury, to keep Mars and Venus in check. When the Sun and Mercury are harmoniously integrated through brotherly love in a yin-yang equilibrium, then they can balance the polarity between the red and white. They can avert war (too much Mars) and degenerate love (too much Venus). They can also balance the natural polarities of hot and cold, dry and wet, stillness and wind, etc.

Saturn is an aging god. His children are greater than he. And it is their story that matters now.

I will leave the teachings on the apocalypse, the nakedness of drunk Noah (remember the wine was psychedelic), the veils, the masks, antisemitism, the Holy of Holies and the importance of the House of David for another time (if I get round to it). I will just end with Jesus’ saying, which he posed once again towards the end of this extraordinary, but often harrowing journey, which all began with a humble cup of Mazatapec mushroom tea:

“Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of?”

Matthew 20:22