This striking illustration from IN THESE SIGNS CONQUER, I have called Mary Magdalene and the Demons. It is an image that I have mirrored, of a 15th century painting of Mary Magdalen, by Francesco de’ Franceschi, that I came across when visiting Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum. Originally, the museum says, it was an altar-piece, possibly from a church in either Padua or Venice. The actual painting is the left side image.
Excerpt from pages 36 and 37
All sorts of fads, fashions and baubles are offered to us: music, films, books, clothes, diets, cosmetic surgery, and technology in exchange for the real wealth every human being came into this realm with. We are told that we must be hip, fashionable, thinner, perfectly formed and intellectually with it all of the time. People spend huge amounts of time, energy and money attempting to stay on the ride as it hurtles around faster and faster. It’s laughable really because the trick is to slow down and get off. Human bodies are physical manifestations of mental energy. Your inner self will always be mirrored on your outer self. Human bodies wear out through constant physical, conscious and emotional mental exertion so obviously surely the very best way to slow down the ageing process is to daydream, contemplate and meditate to give your physical apparatus a rest. At the same time this will allow your essential self to come to the fore. Your unconscious mind where your true wisdom rests will relish the challenge and inevitably your truth will emerge. For readers who would like to give it a go there is a meditation at the end of this book.
Our unconscious minds, as has been said already, naturally process information using symbols. The Darkness has employed this proclivity to enslave us since it first cast its cowl. We are constantly beset and belayed by its never-ending hordes of signs and symbols. This does not have to continue. We can re-educate out conscious minds to recognise the true meanings and motivations of its symbols; because we can do anything! By turning their signs around to face its own troops we can become our own masters and not its slaves. By their own signs we can conquer them.
Laughing is good for you… and them
Anyone with their eyes open can see that a ferocious hurricane bears down upon us. It is the same one that tore into our forbears during the middle ages. It was this Darkness that was met by the angels of light like Francis Bacon, Galileo and other courageous souls who battled monsters toe to toe leaving us a legacy we are only just about mature enough to recognise once again. No one is perfect, they weren’t, and we are not supposed to be. Who wants to live on a cloud playing a harp all bloody day long? Where’s the fun in that? We need fun; laughter is light. Jokes are the realisations and expositions of imperfections. If there weren’t any what a miserable ordeal life would be. You can keep your Nirvanas and all-day-long beatific smiling. Give me someone doing something daft any day. Even if that someone is me. Laugh at me laugh with me, who gives a toss? It’s good to laugh and it is a great leveller. Humour spots an overblown and precious ego from a mile away. It also turns the sharp spotlight on the commentators as well as their supporters. If you want to laugh at something then bloody-well laugh at it, and don’t feel guilty. If some conceited clot gets up spouting porkies or heads for the broom-cupboard rather than the door (like Dubya did) laugh at it (you know you want to). It isn’t impolite it’s hilarious and it exposed his true mental state – He was looking for the Darkness. There is a message in everything. If every time one of these balloons got a good laughing at rather than silence and deference they’d get over themselves; and we’d get over them. It is the right thing to do; it serves them right – get it? You can realise a lot from freeing your sense of humour; fly don’t cower and crawl. We are students and teachers at the same time. Shine your light – even if it is into a broom-cupboard.
It is not my desire to live or to reign longer than my life and my reign shall be for your good.
~ Queen Elisabeth to her Parliament 1601
Thank goodness for that! But what ever did she mean by:
‘to live or to reign longer than my life’
Well, here’s an original photo I took of the painting
at the Ashmolean.
You might be surprised that it has garnered such very
little attention; but there you go. I’m used to it.
Ellis Taylor 2006
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