The beauty of the Tree of Life is that it’s not a static glyph. It can be twisted, turned, and even fractalized. I copied the representation of the Tree of Life in the four worlds as shown in the picture twenty years ago from a book I read in a library. I don’t remember the name of the book, neither the author. In this variation of the Tree of Life, Tiphareth, Netzach, Hod, Yesod, and Malkuth – when they fall to the world below – turn into Kether, Chokmah, Binah, Daath, and Tiphareth respectively. Many interpretations are possible. These are the ones that came to my mind:
- Every inspiration created in Tiphareth (Christ, Ruach) becomes a will-idea or intention for the world below
- Desire turns into wisdom
- Thinking turns into understanding
- Mystical knowledge turns into mind or subconsciousness – that’s why our subconsciousness ‘knows everything’.
- The manifestation of the world above turns into inspiration for the world below it.
Usually, we ascend the Tree of Life gradually through the four worlds (Jacob’s ladder), but apparently, there are four shortcuts:
- Tiphareth of Assiah -> Malkuth of Yetzirah
- Kether of Assiah ->Tiphareth of Yetzirah -> Malkuth of Briah
- Kether of Yetzirah – Tiphareth of Briah -> Malkuth of Atziluth
- Kether of Briah -> Tiphareth of Atziluth
These shortcuts are known as the Axis Mundi, the world’s axis which is said to be at the center of the world, connecting heaven (above) and earth (below), allowing communication between the higher and lower realms. Once in a while, instead of ascending gradually from one Sephiroth to another in a peaceful meditation, our consciousness experience a quantum leap and spontaneously rise a world or two.
For example, a vision of Christ (Tiphareth in Assiah) may also give rise to a vision of the First Matter (Malkuth in Yetzirah). That explains the odd alchemical dictum that the First Matter is ‘mankind’.
The most intriguing axis is the one that connects Kether of Assiah with Tiphareth of Yetzirah and Malkuth of Briah. When our crown chakra (Kether of Assiah) opens, we may have a vision of the Cosmic Christ or even reach Malkuth of Briah, the Kingdom of Heaven as Jesus liked to call it.
In the context of evolution (Exodus), Yetzirah is the wilderness – the unchartered land of meditation and mystical experience. There, Moses and all other prophets receive initiations and training from the inner voice, the Hierophant (Tarot card 5). When they are ready, they climb the peak of the wilderness, Kether of Yetzirah, symbolized by Zion, Mt Carmel, or other mountain peaks. Up there, they can converse with God’s messenger or countenance. This is the Lesser Countenance or Tiphareth of Briah, ruled by Archangel Michael. One time Moses even managed to rise along that axis all the way to Atziluth and meet God face-to-behind (Exodus 33.23). I guess that was Malkuth of Atziluth, the Kingdom of Spirit.
This arrangement of the Tree of Life can also illustrate creation myths. For example, how Osiris, the hero of creation (Tiphareth of Briah), after he was slain, became the ruler of the underworld (Kether of Yetzirah).
Picture attribution: copyright Comfreak @ pixabay.com