ship of God

Ship of God on a Stormy Sea


“Deep companion of the beings of light! In your mercy, give me your strength and help me with your own hand. Dress my soul, O Lord, and speak to me. Help me when enemies close in. … Beneficent friend, free me. My soul is crying in my body at every blow and dagger stab. My hour of life and this form in flesh is over, and all its days of turbulence. … Springs of darkness opened, and the giant fishes transfixed me with fear. My soul fainted before those dreadful forms, hideous to look at. Their bodies lack a human shape. These are the demons, the banished princes, transfixing me with terror. … They rose to drown me. In every neighborhood there were storm winds. Rain, the mist of all fogs, lightning and drums of thunder, shores of clouds, hail, crashing sea. The skiff rose over the crest of a wave and glided into a hidden trough. … With the drownings the sails swallowed water, and the masts shook together in the turmoil. The rudders dropped into the sea. Those left on board turned to stone. Redemption became a habit. From every source the wind blew the prison locks loose. Stars whirled wildly about, planets fell out of orbit. The earth shuddered, as did my foundation. Lofty heavens sank. … The wheel of the zodiac lost its course. The seal of my feet and joints of my toes, every link of my soul’s life was loosened. Each joint of my hands and fingers was loosened and its seal taken off. Their meaty life grew feeble. My limbs fell cold. My knees froze together in fear. In my legs the strength was struck and drained away. When I saw the dark, the strength in my limbs collapsed, and my soul moaned at all its opposing forms. Who will save me? Who will save me; make a new way? … Who will rip off this body and dress me in a new one? After I spoke with trembling soul I saw the savior.
“After I spoke with trembling soul I saw the savior and saw his helmsmen, who came down to dress my soul. I raised my eyes that way and saw deaths hidden by the envoy. Hurt was remote. So too sickness and distress. Their vision left, their darkness fled. Everything was holy and unsurpassed. Light shone elating and lovely, swelling my mind with gladness.” ~Parthian Songs

Ship of God?

This Parthian Manichean song is titled The Ship of God, yet when you read the first part of it, you would think it is more like the ship of Satan. In fact, it almost seems that the first part of the song is talking about a completely different ship than the final section. In truth, there is no ship at all, it is pure allegory. The allegory could represent the material world or the human soul. Both interpretations seem to work. This might be better titled Ship of God on the Sea of Satan.

Ship of God in a Storm

So the song starts with the singer being caught on the Ship of God in a raging storm and asking for help from a spiritual being that he calls a “companion of the beings of light.” Beings of Light is another name for Angels. So he is asking for help from the companion of Angels. Why he doesn’t simply ask God is unknown. Perhaps it is just his way of reminding the listeners that they too can become companions of Angels and be free from the storm of matter. Continue reading “Ship of God on a Stormy Sea”


Beautiful Daughter, the Lion and the Dragon

“ The lion took my beautiful daughter. He seized her, dragged her into his lair with his great dragon. When she was in the pit, the lion screamed. His companions gathered. The dragon whistled and hissed. All the beasts gathered near him and roared. They hid from my daughter, roaring elsewhere, lest their powers diminish. So my cry calls up to the mighty one, who excels among the powers. I the son ask my father. My garment hangs on the universe, saying, if I have wronged the great lion, let him eat me now in his lair. If I’ve wronged the great dragon, let him swallow me here. But if I haven’t wronged the lion here in his midst, let me escape his lair and take my daughter from him. Father of us all . . . place the garment over us all. I pounded their nets; I cracked open their lair. I cast stones on it. I seized the great dragon and his consort I enmeshed them in a trap. I took my daughter from them and placed her high above them all. I hurled stones at their wheel till it collapsed under them, and my daughter and I destroyed all their nets. We drove the great lion and the dragon out of the cosmos, and we came to the village land of the just. They know it too. From the heart of a second lair I took my daughter into the land. They now are also happy. And it will happen soon just as the bride enters the bridal chamber.” ~The Coptic Manichaean Songbook

Lion and Dragon

This tale is definitely not meant to be taken literally. It is a pure allegory and filled with fairly obvious symbols. The lion, dragon, and beasts of the pit represent the Devil and demons of hell. The lair of the lion and dragon is hell.

The Beautiful Daughter

While on one level, the beautiful daughter could represent an innocent person, I think the symbol here is more specific. What the speaker is calling his Beautiful Daughter is symbolic of his Divine Soul. It is, after all, souls that the Devil wants to drag into the pits of hell (which is also allegorical). The Soul is beautiful because it is innocent and pure. It is spirit, not infected with matter and materialism. It has no desire for wealth or fame, but only to reunite with God. Continue reading “Beautiful Daughter, the Lion and the Dragon”

immortality of the phoenix

Immortality of the Phoenix and Soul

Immortality of the Phoenix

“Both Herodotus and Pliny noted the general resemblance in shape between the phoenix and the eagle, a point which the reader should carefully consider, for it is reasonably certain that the modern Masonic eagle was originally a phoenix. The body of the phoenix is described as being covered with glossy purple feathers, while its long tain feathers were alternately blue and red. Its head was light in color and about its neck was a circlet of golden plumage. …

“The phoenix was regarded as sacred to the sun, and the length of its life (500 to 1000 years) was taken as a standard for measuring the motion of the heavenly bodies and also the cycles of time used in the Mysteries to designate the periods of existence. …

“The phoenix (which is the mythological Persian Roc) is also the name of a southern constellation, and therefore it has both an astronomical and an astrological significance. In all probability, the phoenix was the swan of the Greeks, the eagle of the Romans, and the peacock of the Far East. To the ancient mystics the phoenix was a most appropriate symbol of the immortality of the human soul.” ~Manly P. Hall

Phoenix, Eagle, and More

Hall notes that the phoenix is probably the source of the Greek swan, the Roman eagle, and the Persian Roc. He doesn’t mention the Native American firebird, which resembles the phoenix more closely than and of the others mentioned. I think the idea in most, if not all of these sacred birds, is that they represent the human soul. When the phoenix rises and flies toward the sun, it is a hint from the ancient mystery schools on the process for awakening and developing the spirit and soul. The immortality of the phoenix comes from the part of the legend that says that when the phoenix does die after 500 years, it is reborn from the ashes. That is a simplification of the original story, but it is the most important part. The phoenix never truly dies, just like the divine-human soul.

Purple Feathers

The colors of the phoenix have meaning, as does almost everything about this legendary bird. The purple feathers are not seen on many modern depictions of the phoenix, but they are important. Purple is now thought of as the color of royalty, but it is also the color that represents advanced spiritual development or mystical development. In some churches, priests and ministers wear purple only on the holiest occasions. Continue reading “Immortality of the Phoenix and Soul”

honor your soul

Honor Your Soul and Your Spirit

Honor Your Soul, Your Spirit, Your Mind, and Your Heart

“That for which people can honor you are your soul, your spirit, your mind, and your heart. All other things in the world have immerged from these four powers in man. These are treasures that we have to study. If you don’t study the treasures of your heart, your mind, your soul, and your spirit, you will never find happiness.

“Man’s strength does not sit in that which people give him, because what people give they may take back, even on Easter. Man’s strength sits in the Love he shows. Strong is that one who shows his love, but not the one to whom love is shown. Strong is God, because He shows His Love. … He tells the people: ‘If yo want to be happy, you have to show your Love.’

“How is Love defined? Love is defined in th following way. The only thing in the world that does not lose faith is Love. The only thing in the world that does not lose hope is Love. Consequently, faith and hope are absolute in Love. He who has Love in himself easily copes with anything and everything.

“We have come to Earth to do God’s Will. Man’s faith, his greatness, lies in doing God’s Will.” ~Biensa Douno

Which People can Honor

To start with, we shouldn’t be overly concerned with having people honor us. What matters is what God honors in us. So while Douno says soul, spirit, mind, and heart are the things people can honor in us, they are also the things God can honor, and that is what matters.

We honor the spirit by awakening it and nourishing it with Spiritual Light so that it can grow strong and healthy. We honor the Soul in much the same way, but with the goal of having the soul become conscious, and linking us then to higher levels of consciousness where Angels and other Divine Beings of Light dwell. Continue reading “Honor Your Soul and Your Spirit”