Rising of Light

It is obvious that Jeshurun or “Israel” refers frequently to something more than a historic tribe of Semetic demon-worshippers, and that Israel, he or she, is sometimes a personification of the individual soul wandering in the wilderness. I suggest that the name Israel resolves itself naturally into Is, “the light of,” RA, “the eternal sun which has existed forever,” EL “the First Cause, the principal or beginning of all things. The poetic “Israel” thus appears as an extension of the name Ezra, “Rising of Light,” and as another personification of the Divine Essence, Light, or Colony in the soul.

Harold Bayley

Wisdom

… the Bride-groom is King Solomon himself, it naturally follows that the fair Shulamite is she of whom he wrote: ‘I loved her and sought her out for my youth: I desired to make her my spouse, and I was a lover of her beauty.’ These words are addressed to the personification of “Wisdom,” a word that has nowadays lost its true meaning, and unfortunately fails to convey its original significance. Among the ancients “Wisdom” implied Love and Knowledge blended in perfect and equal proportions. Our English word Truth personifies what is perhaps the nearest approach to the original conception; but “Wisdom” meant more than Truth.

It was used to personify the Celestial Influence which at the later was described as the “Holy Spirit.” ‘Wisdom, which is the worker of all good things,’ says Solomon ‘taught me: for in her is an understanding spirit, holy, one only, manifold, subtil, lively, clear, undefiled, plain, not subject to hurt, loving the thing that is good, quick, which cannot be letted, ready to do good. Kind to man, steadfast, sure, free from care, having all power, overseeing all things, and going through all understanding, pure, and most subtil spirits.’

In Egypt Wisdom was personified by Isis, a manifold goddess of whom it was inscribed: ‘I am that which is, has been, and shall be, and no man has lifted my veil.’ Similarly of “Wisdom” the Hebrews wrote: ‘The first man knew her not perfectly, no more shall the last find her out. For her thoughts are more than the sea and her counsels profounder than the Great Deep.’ It is noteworthy that the writer of The Song of Solomon is himself perplexed at the complex character of his own heroin. …he leaves unanswered his own query, ‘Who is she that looketh forth as the morning, fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners?’

Harold Bayley

The Reality of Freemasonry (a system of morality)

Elias Ashmole recorded it in his diary that the symbols and signs of Freemasonry were borrowed partly from the Knight-Templars and partly from the Rosicrucians. It is claimed for Freemasonry that it is a beautiful system of morality veiled in allegory and illustrated by symbols, and, according to Dr. Oliver, ‘The noble and sublime secrets of which we (Freemasons) are possessed are contained in our traditions, represented by hieroglyphic figures and intimated by our symbolic customs and ceremonies.’ ‘Again’ says Dr. Oliver, ‘we have declared over and over again that the great secret of Christian Freemasonry is the practice of morality and virtue here as a preparation for happiness in another world.’

Harold Bayley

The Lost Language of Symbolism

I’m trying to absorb as much as I can about the language of Symbolism to aid in my understanding of the Tarot.

Although etymologists are agreed that language is fossil poetry and that the creation of every word was originally a poem embodying a bold metaphor or a bright conception, it is quite unrealised how close and intimate relation exists between symbolism and philology.

Harold Bayley