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 Research into Mythology and Inspired Literature


The prevalence of myths within the human psyche has led some great thinkers (including C.G. Jung, C.S. Lewis, J. Campbell, and A. Besant) to the opinion,“ that myth can be truer than historical or even scientific fact”, the reason being that it preserves perennial truths in a way in which changing human ideas cannot. Mr. Hodson worked with his Adept guru the Master Polidorus on an important book on Mythology entitled Concealed Wisdom in World Mythology (T.P.H. Adyar,1983). The book contains extremely lengthy and profound occult analysis of myths especially those of Egyptian and Greek times. It is far too detailed to lend itself to this website overview, therefore only one brief example is supplied here, in order to give an idea of its profundity:

clip_image008.jpg             “The Unicorn: The assumption that much of the mythology of ancient peoples, with its many glyphs and emblems, is Adept-inspired for the purpose of preserving for the race and of revealing, while yet concealing, power bestowing knowledge, is supported by the remarkable aptness of the symbology. The unicorn or horned horse as we have seen in one of its many possible meanings is an appropriate symbol of the sublimated generative force in man. The horn, emerging from the brain, indicates that the expression of the creative power and desire then occurs through the will-inspired intellect and its cranical organ the physical brain and particularly the pituitary gland. The horn is thus occultly phallic whilst the horse is an oft-used symbol for man’s purified lower quaternary – mind, emotion, etheric vehicle for vitality and flesh.

            In Greek mythology this is represented by the winged – but not the horned – horse, Pegasus, which the hero, Bellerophon, the Initiate-Ego, catches, controls and directs by means of a golden bridle. This harness is a symbol for the developed and wisely-used will-thought by means of which the personal nature of man (Pegasus) is guided.

            The winged horse was caught near a fountain, typifying the source of Life. Mounting it, Bellerophon rose into the air and slew the Chimaera, a fire-breathing monster. Whilst riding on Pegasus, Bellerophon had no need to come anywhere near the creature whose breath was flame. He soared above her and killed her with his arrows at no risk to himself. The Chimaera was composed of a lion’s head and four legs, a serpentine tail and a goat between the two. It is thus an impossible or unreal conception, a chimaera in the modern meaning of the word, an illusion, only to be ‘seen through’ (destroyed) when in a superior state of consciousness.

            Thereafter, the Initiate Ego, personified by Bellerophon, is no longer limited to the surface of the earth and the physical body; ascends as if winged, into the empyrean – the superphysical states of consciousness. Thus elevated, he is beyond the limitations of passionate desires (the fiery breath), the will to dominate (the lion portion) and sensual desires (the serpentine tail).

            In the Book of Job, the change from the wild ass to the unicorn is also significant; for the ass is a symbol of stubbornness and in its wild state all its qualities are unharnessed. The Candidate for Initiation must tame the hitherto wild ‘ass’, so that thereafter, as symbol of a docile quaternary, it may bear the threefold spiritual Self onward to its goal, even as the Christ rode upon an ass in triumph to Jerusalem…

            The unicorn, be it remembered, is a fabulous animal whose spinal cord is presumed to extend beyond the medulla oblongata, through the pituitary gland and out between the eyes, after which it becomes hardened into a horn. Occultly interpreted, this refers less to the physical spinal cord than to the interior etheric canal which runs along its length, and as has previously stated is called Sushumna nadi. The equi-polariized creative fire, Serpent Fire or Kundalini, flows along this canal from sacrum to brain and in its progress in man, it is accompanied by the separate positive and negative currents which follow each their own pathways, known as Pingala and Ida respectively, intertwining the Sushumna as they flow.

            The sublimation of the creative force – the ascent of the serpentine creative fire – occurs as a result of the transmutation of sex-force by means of the continued practice of yoga, aided by passage through valid rites of Initiation. Such knowledge was for a long period of time part of the closely guarded secrets of the Ancient Mysteries, and even now the technique whereby it is thus aroused is kept secret from the world. This reservation is designed not to withhold valuable information but to protect the profane and the unready from the danger and strain inseparable from the premature awakening of Kundalini….The horn of the unicorn is sometimes pictured as helical, which may be regarded as a suitable if veiled reference to the spirally intertwining forces of Kundalini, the power that moves in a serpentine path…”

Concealed Wisdom in World Mythology, T.P.H. Adyar,1983 p.173 et seq.


Inspired Literature:


  Other examples of preserving the perennial wisdom are found in so-called Fairy Tales and inspired writings of which Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and Alice through the Looking Glass are examples. I personally have very fond and privileged memories of this exposition, because I was an inadvertent witness to Mr. Hodson investigating this project. When he was living in Perth, Western Australia in 1973, Mr. Hodson had encouraged me to call on him after work. One day I called and the door was open so I just walked in. I found him in his bedroom dictating to Sandra his inspired interpretation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice Through the Looking Glass. He was lying on his bed focussed at the level of causal consciousness or higher and all these wonderfully inspired ideas which he was obviously seeing and hearing on the higher planes were flowing through most lucidly and without any hesitation. When it was realized that I was present Mr. Hodson came back to normal waking consciousness and greeted me in his usual friendly manner, but for a brief time I had witnessed how a great yogic occultist does his investigations. His findings related to Alice through the Looking Glass were published a few months afterwards in the journal, Theosophy in Australia, October 1973 (see also Sharing the Light Vol 1 pp 788-93, from where this extract is taken):


“…The story is found to be composed of at least three elements.


First there is the sublime story of a little girl’s adventures on passing into a supposed world existing through the looking glass. This fairy tale is told with complete understanding of, and love for the child, and is replete with brilliance, humour, wit, and invention, all combined in perfectly controlled fantasy – hence its immortality. The result is pure delight from the first page to the last – a product of genius indeed.


Second – whether the author knew it or not – the book itself is inspired occult literature, telling in symbol the story of the passage of life and consciousness, symbolised by Alice, the pawn, through the elemental kingdoms (first square) and seven planes and squares to fulfilment (coronation) – all symbolised in the game and on the board of chess.


Third, there is an amazingly accurate portrayal of the experience of the human soul (Alice) on the straight and narrow way in purity and wholeness (the child state) to discipleship (to Red Queen as teacher), Initiation (association with the White Knight) and Adeptship (Alice as Queen).


            Is it possible, one may ask, that genius can be thus occultly inspired with or without knowing so? I incline to an affirmative answer, since Egoically a genius is awake to universal consciousness and the results may break through and flow down into thought, emotion, fancy and creative imagination, thus ensouling and directing the activities in and through the author.


            Especially is this true in play, I suggest, for the mind does not then ‘slay the Real’…One must not, of course, read too much into such a story and of course, there is much sheer fun and fantasy to be found therein, nevertheless – to say the least – the chain of correspondences is remarkably accurate and complete.


            Alice enters the realm of the soul of things where even inanimates talk – chessmen, insects, flowers and animals, for example. She passes via a looking glass – the Astral light, the reflecting medium in Nature. And the guiding principle in the interpretation of this allegory is dual, namely, evolution to perfection – the movement of Soul from pawn to Queen – in the game itself to become a King, and the battle between Spirit and matter – the white and the black pieces. This warfare is correctly portrayed throughout the game of chess.


            The checkerboard, itself, displays the pairs of opposites as the eight rows correctly indicate levels of awareness and stages of evolution. Thus regarded, they represent the first, second, and third Elemental Kingdoms, followed by the mineral, plant animal, human and Adept stages of unfoldment. Chess thus portrays both the universal and the individual conflict between Spirit and matter, life and form. The pawns on the second row would be symbols of the Monads at the beginning of externalisation, with ‘Kingship’ attainable seven moves further on or in the eighth square.


            The major pieces move fairly freely about the board, thereby suggesting advanced stages of evolution and developed qualities of character, whilst being on the first square they might perhaps be regarded as the Dhyan-Chohans from preceding universes. The King and Queen thus personify feminine and masculine Aspects of Deity in Universe and man – Logos and its Shakti.


HumptyDumpty_image.jpg            Alice herself – man as symbol – begins the ‘game’ as a pawn on the ‘downward’ or outward journey through the three Elemental Kingdoms or first three squares, when the physical level is reached. Thereafter. The direction is reversed, the upward or inward journey begins and the guard rightly informs her that she is ‘travelling the wrong way’. Later, she is instructed very precisely by an Elder Brother, the Red Queen, concerning her early steps, finds her own Egoic consciousness (Humpty Dumpty), with whom she shakes hands – fully realized contact – and thereafter is led to the eighth square where Adeptship is attained, for there her Coronation occurs. Interestingly, Alice is not crowned by other hands but finds the crown upon her head – the Adept is self-initiated.


            Thus ‘ends’ a story which rightly had its beginning in fire, all three dramatis personae being first met in the fireplace, all Monads being sparks of the One Flame.


            As the wonderful tale unfolds one sees that truly Alice may be regarded as a symbol of man and particularly of man approaching and travelling to its end the pathway of hastened evolution to Adeptship. This view is supported by the statement that she begins her adventures as a little girl or is in the necessary child state and moreover when through the looking glass, she is ‘on her knees’. The posture of kneeling implies both supplication and humility, whilst the preceding passage through the looking glass could refer to a reduction of the illusion produced on consciousness by awareness only of personal, physical surroundings, philosophically described as mayavic or illusory.


            Early in her subsequent experiences, Alice ascends the mountain, symbolic of both spiritual states of awareness and elevated evolutionary attainments. She talks to flowers and is in consequence in communion with the divine Life in the subhuman kingdoms of Nature. Everything which formerly was normal then tends to become abnormal, hence the statement by the railway guard mentioned earlier, ‘you are travelling the wrong way’. Truly, to the normal, egocentric way of human life, the utterly selfless Path-life is indeed a reversal. Alice rightly says that ‘the way looks very dark, but I certainly won’t go back’, or despite incomplete understanding and some difficulties at first, the inner will produces the resolution that ‘there is no other way at all to go’ (Upanishads). She then experiences the loss of the memory of her name, since as Egoic consciousness is closely approached, the sense of physical identity (name) begins to fade, the limitation of human Personality being progressively transcended. Complete harmoniousness with the doer or unity with the Divine Life in all beings is then experienced.


            The following ideas and experiences with suggested interpretations are illustrative of the higher consciousness: the very small pay of ‘two-pence per week’ – service rendered without thought of personal gain; experiences in the shop, where everything was moving – the motionless solidity typical of physical awareness, tends to disappear when the ever-flowing, electric life-energy (Fohat) begins to be contracted in the ‘workshop of the Universe’; Alice finds herself rowing on water – superphysical matter is highly fluidic and the concepts of forms with which it is concerned are impermanent as are the forms themselves, and so the rushes disappear; that which previously seemed permanent is now found to be transient and impermanent; she attempts to buy an egg, which however vanishes through the ceiling – the Monad-Ego in the Causal Body (the egg cannot be bought or ‘held down’ or possessed by the formal mind. It therefore vanishes ‘through the ceiling’, to a higher plane. Thus read Alice Through the Looking-Glass is rich in presentations of man as symbol. Indeed, many of the characters may be regarded, whether representing normal or more advanced stages of human evolution.


            Humpty Dumpty, for example, personifies man as Ego in the Causal Body, whilst Alice herself when crowned and feasted may be thought of a symbol of man after arrival at Adeptship, with all illusion banished as a dream: ‘you are only a pack of cards’. In his own account of himself, Humpty Dumpty can ‘explain all poems’ – the human Ego is endowed with comprehension. He is egg-shaped – the form of the aura or Augoeides. He has an enormous face and so, head – the Ego is an embodiment of understanding and knowledge (see diagram above Ed). He sits with legs crossed – a posture in yoga in which unity with the One Power, Life and Intelligence is attained. He maintains balance on a narrow wall – the Inner Self exists in the Higher Mental worlds, which are intermediary between spiritual Will and Wisdom, on the one hand, and concrete mentality, emotion and the physical world, on the other. His eyes are steadily fixed in the opposite direction from Alice. The Ego is conscious at spiritual, rather than physical, levels. Alice looks at him – is communing with the Ego, thereby personifying the aspirant to Egoic consciousness. He says that should he fall, all possible aid will come from the King and affirms, ‘I am one that’s spoken to a King, I am’ – the ‘royal’ Atma within the triple Self. He completely explains the otherwise incomprehensible poem Jabberwocky – pierces fantasy and knows reality.


clip_image011.jpg            Later Alice meets and communes with those twins, Tweedledum and Tweedledee, personifying man in his dual mentality, abstract and concrete. Dual unification has been attained; for they expound the Logos doctrine with a most wonderful, if whimsical, instruction to Alice concerning the sleeping and snoring Red King. Here the reader is introduced to the theosophical teaching that behind all creation there exists that Lord of contemplation, who brings all things into existence by His thought and holds them there until the time of dissolution arrives. If the Logos failed to maintain His concentration for a trillionth part of a fraction of a second, the whole Universe would vanish. The Archetype and its objective expression would disappear, disintegrate. The creative Song would cease and all would instantly sink back into the condition of virginal Space. This cannot happen, however, for the Divine Yogi is He whose formative thought and song are maintained unbroken from dawn to eve of the creative epoch.


            Let us walk with Alice, Tweedledum and Tweedledee through the dark wood where they hear a strange sound in the distance. The answer given to her question as to the cause of the noise is more than worthy of full quotation:redking_image.jpg

‘It’s only the Red King snoring’, said Tweedledee.

‘Come and look at him!’ the brothers cried, and they each took one of Alice’s hands and led her to where the King was sleeping…

‘He’s dreaming now, said Tweedledee, ‘and what do you think he’s dreaming about?’

Alice said, ‘Nobody can guess that’.

‘Why, about you!’ Tweedledee exclaimed, clapping his hands triumphantly. ‘And if he left off dreaming about you, where do you suppose you’d be?’

‘Where I am now, of course’, said Alice.

‘Not you! Tweedledee retorted contemptuously. ‘You’d be nowhere. Why, your’re only a sort of thing in his dream!’

‘If that there King was to wake’ added Tweedledum, ‘you’d go out – bang! – just like a candle!’

‘I shouldn’t! Alice exclaimed indignantly. ’Besides, if I’m only a thing in his dream, what are you, I should like to know?’

‘Ditto’ said Tweedledum.

‘Ditto, ditto! cried Tweedledee.

He shouted this so loud that Alice couldn’t help saying ‘Hush! You’ll be waking him, I’m afraid, if you make so much noise’.


‘Well, it’s no use your talking about waking him’, said Tweedledum, ‘when you’re only one of the things in his dream. You know very well you’re not real’.

‘I am real!’ said Alice, and began to cry.

‘You won’t make yourself a bit realer by crying’, Tweedledee remarked. ‘There’s nothing to cry about’.

‘If I wasn’t real’, Alice said – half laughing through her tears, it all seemed so ridiculous – ‘I shouldn’t be able to cry’.

‘I hope you don’t suppose those are real tears?’ Tweedledum interrupted in a tone of great contempt.


            There, I suggest, we have a mathematical genius, Lewis Carroll, perhaps not knowing what he was doing, depicting with great beauty, with fantasy and yet with extraordinary reality, the fact that we are indeed all beings in the great ‘dream’ of the King, the Logos of our Universe. Tweedledum and Tweedledee – Monad and Ego perchance – told Alice that she was only a thing in the Red King’s dream, that if he woke up for a moment she would disappear, and that the same was also true of themselves. May we leave them together there in the wood, and so bring to a close an attempted presentation of Alice as ‘man as symbol’ or personification of all mankind?



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