All spiritual traditions have used Darkness techniques in the pursuit of enlightenment. In Europe, the dark room often appeared in underground form as a network of tunnels, in Egypt as the Pyramids, in Rome as the catacombs, and by the Essenes, near the Dead Sea in Israel, as caves. In the Taoist tradition caves have been used throughout the ages for higher level practices. In the Tao, the cave, the Immortal Mountain, the Wu San, represents the Perfect Inner Alchemy Chamber. Meditating and fasting in the cave is the final journey of spiritual work. The caves are the Earth Mother and its energy lines. Like the hollowing bones, caves contain the earliest information of life stored inside the Earth. Caves contain the vital essence of the Earth Power. The Tao says: ‘When you go into the dark and this becomes total, the darkness soon turns into light.’
In the Darkness, our mind and soul begin to wander freely in the vast realms of psychic and spiritual experience. When you enter this primordial state you are reunited with the true self and divinity within. You literally ‘conduct’ the universal energy. You may see into the past and future, understand the true meaning of existence, and begin to understand the order of things. You return to the womb, the cocoon of our material structure and Nature’s original Darkness.
Complete darkness profoundly changes the sensory sensibilities of the body/brain. We are deprived of all visual reference. Sounds begin to fall away as we lose contact with the external world and turn the senses inward. The effect of darkness is to shut down major cortical centers in the brain, depressing mental and cognitive functions in the higher brain centers. Emotional and feeling states are enhanced, especially the sense of smell and the finer senses of psychic perception. Dreams become more lucid, and the dream state manifests in our conscious awareness. Eventually, we awaken within ourselves the awareness of the Source, the spirit, the soul. We descend into the void, into the darkness of deep, inner space.
Darkness activates the deepest centers within the brain, the glands of the Crystal Palace, establishing a connection with the Original Source, the Wu Chi. The pineal gland connects us to the Universal Energy. From the hypothalamus gland, we project our soul or spirit upwards, and receive the descending Universal Energy. The pituitary gland receives the Cosmic Force, used to launch the spirit bodies into the earthly or human plane for traveling.
The darkness actualizes successively higher states of divine consciousness, correlating with the synthesis and accumulation of psychedelic chemicals in the brain. Melatonin, a regulatory hormone, quiets the body and mind in preparation for the finer and subtler realities of higher consciousness (Days 1 to 3). Pinoline, affecting the neuro-transmitters of the brain, permits visions and dream-states to emerge in our conscious awareness (Days 3 to 5). Eventually, the brain synthesizes the “spirit molecules” 5-methoxy-dimethyltryptamine (5-MeO-DMT) and dimethyltryptamine (DMT), facilitating the transcendental experiences of universal love and compassion (Days 6 to 12).
There is one point in the sky around which all other constellations revolve, the North Star point. The North Star is fixed, stationary, motionless. Taoists regard it as the Center, the source of the Universe, the Nothingness, or Wu Chi. The North Star is the Gateway to Heaven. In the Tao, the body is a microcosm of the Universe. “As above, so below.” Whatever happens “up there” happens “down here.” Hence, the physical body is marked with gridlines of energy and meridians of light around a Center. The Center is called the “Tan Tien”, or “field of energy”.
The idea of a Central Axis - the Pole Star in the firmament and a Cauldron in the body - is a central tenet in Taoist philosophy and alchemical practice. To get to the Center of the body, open the Tan Tien; to get to the Center of the Heavens, enter through the North Star. Both are doorways to the heart of the true Tao, the Wu Chi, from which both Heaven and Earth are born. The Inner Alchemy practice of the Universal Tao fuses the body’s energies to give birth to a spiritual embryo capable of maturing into a deathless existence and of flight inward, beyond time and space, to the Source.
The Darkness meditation releases us from the bonds of the Earth. No longer controlled by the rotating power of the Earth, the Sun and the Moon, the organs vibrate in unison with the spiritual stars, the Gates of Heaven. The North Star, unmoving and unwavering in space, is the center, the Wu Chi, emanating violet rays throughout the galaxy, affecting every living cell of nature on our planet. The Big Dipper gathers all the violet light from the universe, and emanates the light as infra-red radiant energy. The emanation of infra-red light of the Big Dipper, combined with the violet rays of the North Star, has a positive, nurturing effect upon the bodies and minds of those who know how to access it. Taoists believe that the Violet Stars, the Big Dipper, and other constellations form the “Gates of Heaven.” All living things must pass through these gates to return to their source of origin, the Wu Chi, which is the state of oneness with the Tao.
The Darkness environment activates the glands of the Crystal Palace, which includes the pineal, hypothalamus, thalamus and pituitary glands; actualizing their higher powers and providing a “way back” to the Original Source. When the Crystal Palace is open, it becomes illuminated like millions of shining crystals. It can give and receive light and awaken our inner knowledge and deepest potentials. It receives light and knowledge from the universe and reflects it to the various organs and glands to enhance them.
The pineal gland helps us to overcome death by taking in external forces and combining them with sexual energy and the Original Force to form an “Immortal Body.” With this body we can leave the physical body before the final transition (death) occurs. By focusing on the tip of the Crystal Palace, the pineal gland, and the back of the crown, we can project ourselves to the North Pole or North Star as we attract its violet emanations.
In the Tao, the sources of longevity and immortality are within the body, not as a physical womb but a spiritual one. Taoists call this spiritual womb the “cauldron”. The right method to “cook the cauldron” is not to search outwardly for love from others, but to search within the naked and abandoned self. Self-love, or self-intercourse is the way to give birth to the Immortal Self. The Darkness manifests the bodily processes of “Healing Love.”
-The Universal Tao
The spiritual meaning of the boar-
The abuse is that philosophers remain in terms, and dispute concerning them without coming to agreement. Hence all idea of the real thing perishes, and man’s understanding is so limited that afterwards it knows nothing but terms. Therefore when they wish to comprehend things with their terms, they collect nothing but such terms, and thus obscure the real thing, so that they can understand nothing at all; thus they darken their natural light. For on this account an unlearned man has much more extensive ideas, and sees [more clearly] what is true, than a philosopher. Such a one remains in the mud like a pig. Such a pig was represented to me as a wild boar, and he becomes a wild beast in the woods; for he wanders like a wild beast among truths, which he tears in pieces and destroys. (Spiritual Diary #1604 -Emanuel Swedenborg)
In the Psalms, the Church is described as to spiritual truth as a vine brought out of Egypt, and planted; and of such spiritual enemies as have been described, it is said, “The boar out of the wood doth waste it, and the wild beast of the field doth devour it” (Psalm 80:13).
The spiritual meaning of the black horse-
And I saw, and behold, a black horse, signifies the understanding of the Word destroyed as to truth, thus as to doctrine with these. That “a horse” signifies the understanding of the Word, was shown above; the reason why “black” signifies what is not true, thus falsity, is because black is the opposite of white, and white is predicated of truth; white also derives its origin from light, and black from darkness, thus from the absence of light, and light is truth. But in the spiritual world there exists blackness from a twofold origin, one from the absence of flaming light, which light is with those who are in the Lord’s celestial kingdom, and the other from the absence of bright light, which is the light with those who are in the Lord’s spiritual kingdom; the latter blackness has the same signification as “darkness,” but the former as “thick darkness.” There is a difference between these two kinds of blackness, the one is abominable, the other not so much so; it is the same with the falsities which they signify. (Swedenborg)
The spiritual meaning of the polar bear-
Their mastery of their environment can teach us how to be grounded and powerful on the physical plane. We can also learn from the ease with which they move from the water to the land element how to easily travel between psychic and spiritual realms.
To the Native people of the North, the polar bear is a source of not only physical but spiritual sustenance and is also considered to be kin. Some tribes see these bears as the ghosts of departed relatives and have myths of humans and polar bears living together, and of transmuting into each other. Other native cultures have similar tales, and whether or not they are literally true, they serve to remind us of our essential kinship with all of life.
The polar bear is also considered the embodiment of the spirit of the North, an animal who holds ancient wisdom and has shamanic powers. This animal, whose translucent coat camouflages it in the winter, often appears as a traveler between the worlds not only of water, ice, and earth, but of earth and spirit.
This animal’s energy is very powerful. If Polar Bear enters your life through dreams or imagination, you can be prepared for a profound spiritual journey. (Swedenborg)
Header -Isaiah 5:20.