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In recovering the great importance of the symbol of the Cross, it is important to do some analysis of Hebrew, Kabbalah, Astrology and the 4 elements of Tarot. The Cross is a very powerful symbol and represents a "perfect" balance between forces. It could be said that the Cross is so "perfect" that it is "painfully perfect.

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These four hemispheres are also symbolized by the four elements of fire, water, air and earth, the four elements in Astrology, and the four suits in tarot being Wands fire , Cups water , Swords air , and Disks earth. The symbol of the Cross has also been known as the "world soul" or "world tree. One barely need mention the story of Christ or Buddha. Basically, there is a "cross within" and a "cross without. These polarities are fire, water, air and earth.

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The qualities of these elements arise from the mixtures between heat, cold, moistness and dryness. Nature reflects the soul's own divine forms back to it. In heaven it may, as Plato predicates, bathe its consciousness in the eternal verities. But, just as the acorn can not comprehend its oakness, As the eye can not turn to inspect itself, the soul must see itself pictured in the forms which its parent has projected in nature, which forms are the likeness of itself. In the static inertness of unified being, consciousness can not become aware of itself, can not objectify itself to itself.

It must brace itself ideally against itself materially to become self-conscious. Spirit becomes acquainted with its own selfhood by looking its material opposite in the face. Spirit plunges to its own "death" as spirit when it goes forth to parade in the world of substance, and then stands off and watches itself as it stalks through the worlds.

Thus it endures "death" on the cross of matter, but in the reflex it recovers its true selfhood and arises anew from the "dead. Spiritual realizations are not in an upper world, but are cognate with the existent order Nature's works acquire meaning in the "commentaries" they provoke the mind to make upon them; they seem to bring mind to a kinship with the life expressing itself in them. Mind imputes to nature its own values retroactively or in reflection, but nature plants the first impressions. It translates nature into the categories of its own conception.

Kuhn further writes on the philosopher Santayana: And Santayana, in a side glance at Greek thought, pays a notable tribute to the benignant influence of nature when he remarks that "if no single phenomenon had been explained correctly by any philosopher from Thales to Lucretius, yet by their frank and studious contemplation of nature they would have liberated the human soul.

And it is possible that our Harvard savant, with perhaps as keen a faculty to picture the forms of abstract thought as any philosopher has ever displayed, has caught the truth of a relation between these two constituents of life that none other has so clearly delineated. For he has taken a most radical position on this relation. He has in fact gone to the extreme view that, so far from spirit's being the absolute antithesis of matter, a thing alien and without dependence on matter, it is in truth as much a product of matter's creativity as any material object.

It is simply the ripe fruit on nature's tree. In short, spirit, consciousness, mind are in and belong as much to the world of nature as does a tree itself. The automative springs of unreflective action, which we call instinct, we agreed to think of as located in and a product of our animal nature. But mind, thought, intuition, spirit we have segregated off from the domain of nature and claim that they come down to us from some supernatural order of essence even existent prior to nature. No, declares Santayana; these essences that we like to think of as "higher" than instinct are just as truly the production of nature and its forces as is instinct.

Spiritual intuition is only instinct evolved into sharper perception, more sensitive appreciations, more luminous and numinous insights. The entire range of life is not a process that proceeds under the banner of nature, then at some point switches to the banner of spirit, but is an unbroken continuity of the same order. And if the early stages of the movement involved the preview and anticipation of the later and higher stages, how can it be denied that the process and the motivation are spiritual throughout?

If, as in the case of the acorn, the spiritual end product is implicit in the beginning, then again the whole order must be considered spiritual. It is all one process, but the human mind in its limited view, contrasting initial and rudimentary status with developed manifestation, insists on a division and difference between the two moments. It names the seed stage as one order of being and the fruit stage as another.

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Santayana would subsume both stages under the one category. He asserts that the entire life of reason was generated and controlled by the animal life of man in the bosom of nature. Blind impulses of instinct, leading to now happy, now unhappy outcomes, stirred thought alive and so unfolded the powers of cognition, reason, moral and spiritual consciousness. If it turns actually spiritual in the end, it must have been similarly so in the beginning.

So, the philosopher insists, it matters little whether you extend the concept of the natural right on to the spiritual consummation, or pull back the spiritual to cover the primary grades. Santayana will be charged here with an illegitimate redefinition of the term natural that extends its meaning to make it include the spiritual, and even by inference makes the spiritual include the natural.

By so doing he may be accused also of making both deism and pantheism the true religion. He says intuition is pathetically animal. He confesses that he does not know what matter is -- in itself. But, in a rigorous critique of the vaunting claims of "metaphysical idealists" as to the primacy and sole reality of spirit, he finds that, if spirit is the reality behind all appearances, then this spirit is precisely what he calls matter, since it is the living energies inherent in matter that drive the life movement forward.

And he adds that he finds this concept of the world process much more interesting and beautiful than the mystical rhapsodies of the idealists, and much more likely to be true.

Further, he says that our loftiest intuitions of mystical rapport with the being of God depend on nature and matter for their foundation and generation. By its grand sweeping harmonies, it is nature itself that gives wings to the soul. This view, he says, is supported by the popular definition of "spiritual," because intuition, when it thoroughly introspects animal experience, transmutes it into the pure flame of conscious illumination and renders it religious or poetical, which is as competent an estimate of the meaning of "spiritual" as the popular mind can ever reach.

He declares that most metaphysics are simply imagined experiences, flouting the possibility that true experience of real essence could go on in a void, without any material foundations.

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This position puts him at sharp variance from most Hindu spiritual systems, which he does characterize as baseless vaporings of feeling and chimerical infatuations. Love itself, he says, is a brilliant illustration of a principle universally discernible: that the human reason lives by its power to turn the friction of material forces into the light of ideal verities. The intuitions which we take to be the afflations of spirit flow out from the experience of the ego with the crude forces of the world and take form under the felt pressure of nature, but definitely require the existence of nature to generate them.

Incarnation, the presence of souls in physical embodiment on a planet, is by no means an anomaly. The spirit is no intruder on earth, but is here by proper assignment in the order of the cosmos. It is not a fall, not a miscarriage of divine ordinance. Then the philosopher dares to give utterance to a statement that throws the imputation of the grossest possible error in the face of orthodox Christian theology, when he says that it is a fatuous and unfounded prejudice to suppose that spirit is contaminated by its contact with the body of flesh. The flesh is intrinsically beneficent from every point of view, as it is only through the device that spirit-soul is itself generated.

That which brings spirit into existence and function can not be inimical to it. Every brush of the latent essence of spirit against the objective confrontation of the outer world produces its bit of friction which warms potential soul quality into life.

Every impulse of man or beast fans the flame of spirit one degree higher. Ideas that have no deep roots in the world are unrealizable and cause psychic indigestion. His climactic indictment of spiritual mysticism as wild libertinism of the imagination is voiced in his statement that if you cut your lines of attachment with the animal bases of your life, you run mad. When the soul cuts her umbilical cord with her Mother Nature, she risks detachment from the sources of her well-being. These quotes will take on much meaning as we deepen our understanding of the Cross. These four worlds are Atziluth, Briah, Yetzirah and Assiah.

The four worlds are dealt with more on the Minor Arcana page and its four subsections of Wands, Cups, Swords and Disks. There are many ways of understanding this and mapping it out as found in the Minor Arcana pages, but the point here is to get to the core of the Cross itself and to discover the weight it has as a symbol of great existential import. One of the best angles of approach is actually through the Tarot, beginning with the Four Aces. Ace of Wands. It is forceful and can be domineering, though when this card falls it may indicate the balance of firey energy being put to good use and is not necessarily violent.

Intensely creative, active and forthright, this card encapsulates all Fire Signs and can be thought of as their wellspring. Being the wellspring of all the Water Signs, it indicates sensitivity, openness, empathy, and nurturing.

Water, Fire, Wind: The Elements of Following Christ - Bo Cassell - Google книги

Calm, well-being, deep introspection, self-reflection, grace and artistic inspiration are hallmarks of this card. Ace of Swords. Libra is where we get the word "library" and is a sign representing careful study, diplomacy, law and psychology. Being the source of all the Air Signs, the Ace of Swords denotes mental acuity, intellectual agility, and the fierce defense of Truth.