The philosophy of Karen Blixen
In this article I will try to explain the philosophy of one of the greatest storytellers in the 20th century. Many have tried that before, but I will try to do it with a special touch. This special touch is an explanation of the philosophy of a woman whose immense sorrow over unhappy love, opened her to ancient secret knowledge and powers, that very few understand.
My article is – besides my own experiences with extraordinary powers - inspired by what the Danish philosopher and spiritual teacher Jes Bertelsen, has investigated in his strange little book Inner Tantra (1989).
The philosophy of Karen Blixen is not easy to understand, since she never put it out directly in words, only through her stories. In order to explain I will try to characterize a particular area of the polar relationship of some collective energy-processes, where informations from the Source (the divine energy-source, the otherness – God, whatever you might call it), through individual persons, are transformed via the mandala-structures of the universal images, down through the polarized structures of the collective images, to the personal images.
(Read more about this image-structure under your thoughts – which meditation opens up for – in my articles Paranormal phenomena seen in connection with spiritual practice, and Paranormal phenomena seen in connection with mystical experiences).
In other words: the phenomenon, which often is called energy- and consciousness-transmission - (in my article A critique of the Indian Oneness Movement and its use of Western success coaching I have shown the false use of this ability; that is: the use of what they in Indian philosophy call Deeksha, Shaktipat, etc.).
The images in the universal time include their polar partners, they are a kind of visionary mandala-structures, which work in synchronism with the Now. They therefore function synthesizing and healing. The images in the collective and personal time eliminate these polar partners, and therefore they work separating in polar tensions. Furthermore they work in sequences in past and future.
Images in the collective time are therefore a dangerous intermediate area between the universal and personal time. The collective time lies on a so-called astral plane, and its degree of fascination is known from fairy-tales, myths, archetypes, primordial images, dreams.
When individual people have an opening to the collective time, their creativity, and their reality-creating ability, are set free in fascinating degree. Experiences from here are experiences such as kundalini, clairvoyance, astral travels, mythological visions, miracles, channeling, UFOs, memories from past lifes, Near-death experiences, possession states.
However you are, in this astral state, still on the plane of the collective images of time, which work in sequences in past and future, and you are in danger ending up in a spiritual crisis. A spiritual crisis is an expression of, that you have gone out in the collective time with your Ego, without having done the philosophical preliminary work; that is to say: the realization-work and the ethical training. The Ego will then make you loose your way in the collective time. This can happen in two ways: either as suffering (often called The Dark Night of The Soul), or as Ego-inflation (further reading about this: Spiritual crises as the cause of paranormal phenomena and The ego-inflation in the New Age and the self-help environment).
In the following I will (in order to explain the philosophy of Karen Blixen) look at three ways of realization, in which individual persons can have an access to the collective time´s area of energy, and how this energy can work both constructive and destructive:
1. The realized transmission of energy and consciousness
Around ethical highly placed spiritual teachers, there seem to be formed existential mandala-structures, which, as great energy-whirls, canalize highly growth-advancing energy and consciousness-waves from the Source (the Now, life itself). These mandala-structures necessarily have to arrange themselves after the collective images´ polarization-patterns in past and future, whereby the lines are formed, which the energy and the transmissions can follow into the personal images, which after all also only work in past and future.
These energy-mandalas are in religious art archetypical portrayed in for example the classic configurations around Christ (the four evangelists and their symbolical power) and Buddha (the Dyani-Buddhas with their esoterical figures).
Such mandala-fields are constelled concretely among the students, who relate to such a teacher. And in these fields, constituted by human beings, the Source manifests itself concretely-existential.
In the former time´s spiritual pedagogics the teacher took the central place in these mandalas, whereby the hierarchical structure was able to be unfold (Christ and Buddha in the centre). In the newer time´s spiritual pedagogics (maybe because of the Ego-extreme in our time, and the many people who, because of ego-inflated psycho-religious movements as the New Thought movement, and the self-help industry as such, end up in Ego-inflation – see my articles The New Thought movement and the law of attraction and Management theory and the self-help industry) the development aims towards holding free the center of the circles, whereby an ideal equal spirituality can begin to unfold.
This development is especially represented by Krishnamurti, who in this way seeks to make the Source common. In such a mandala-structure is that, which before symbolical was gathered in the centre, now unfolded and made common in the periphery. The aim is completely to avoid the guru-centric. Anybody, who has worked with Krishnamurti´s teaching, can recognize this (see my article The philosophy of Krishnamurti).
When an individual person has a realized access to the collective time´s area of energy, we have to do with a spiritual teacher of one or the other kind. The realized transmission of energy and consciousness will always be characterised by a spiritual teacher, who not only has realized the collective time´s astral worlds, but in addition to this also the universal time, and therefore truth and reality (which means that he or she is an enlightened master). This teacher is therefore able to discriminate between the image and the reality, and therefore able to relate relatively to the relative and absolutely to the absolute (what critical thinking is all about – see my book A dictionary of thought distortions). The collective forms of energy are here used for spiritual purposes (where the energy is turned towards the Now, and therefore the Source and the essence).
Such teachers function as energy-distributers and energy-spreaders to individual persons, who are students and disciples of this teacher, a kind of transformation-phenomenon, where the individual persons are liftet into the spiritual dimension with its universal images, insights and experiences of love.
To teach spiritual consists after all in, among other things, in passing on energy (love, information, healing, direct transmission of spiritual consciousness). Only an enlightened master can do this. The enormous amount of New Age teachers calling themselves spiritual teachers are therefore an extremely dangerous inflation of knowledge about spirituality (see my article Six common traits of New Age that distort spirituality).
The passed on energy from the spiritual dimension is, from the medium of an enlightened master, spreading itself like waves out towards those, who are open, and those, who can learn and receive. This wavevibration-process goes through the mandala-structures of the universal images, which work in synchronism with the Now (the spiritual dimension) to the polar tension-tracks in the collective images, which work in past and future, in order to be able to reproduce itself in the personal images, which after all also only work in past and future. The waves have to be able to travel. The energy has to be able to spread itself from higher levels, via the teacher, and out to those, who can grow in this field.
Around such a teacher there in other words arises an universal image, a kind of mandala-structure, created by the teacher and the students around him.
Most known is as mentioned Jesus and his disciples, or Buddha and his disciples. But it can also happen in a monastery, for example around Francis of Assisi, Hildegard von Bingen, or around Socrates and his students.
In such a group-energetical mandala-structure in the Now, the polar relationship in the collective time is organized in such a way, that energy can be send and received, arise and travel like rings in water.
The greatest source of energy we, via our common Ego-consciousness (the personal images), have at our disposal, lies in our sexuality. All spiritual practice is about transforming sexual energy into spirituality.
In the work of spiritual teachers you can talk about a conscious making use of group-energetical mandala-structures. All such existential manifested mandalas have that in common, that the sexual energy here uses other lines than the usual.
Whether the sexuality is transformed through exercises, prayer, and meditation, or it happens through conscious taken over unhappy fate (illness or the death of the beloved, which I below shall investigate with reference to Karen Blixen), then the conscious turned inwards sexuality opens for knowledge about, and experiences of the collective images of time. Hereby is released an extensive and common human energy, which can express itself in the existential environment around the concerned energy-sources.
There exist traces of this many places; and there is often offence connected to it. The conditions are not realized for what, they really are. People choose to understand from their own conditions, understandable enough. In addition to this shall be added, that these energetical structures are subtle, they are extremely powerful, and they are in themselves neither good or evil. To a high degree it depends of the participants and their philosophical integration, and their realization work and ethical practice, what use there is made of these powers and functions.
One can therefore not blame observers, partially that the phenomena are misjudged, partially that they easily awake suspicions. For surely is it namely, that such energy-phenomena often enough have become used in lesser beneficial situations.
2. The lesser realized transmission of energy and consciousness
The same energy, which can be used unselfish, can namely also be used turned stimulative into the Ego-structures, whereby the Ego can loose balance and expand to a super-Ego, or in another way be demonized. It is this, that happens in the spiritual crisis. You have gone out in the collective time with your Ego.
The lesser realized transmission of energy and consciousness is therefore characterised by people, who admittedly have an opening to the collective time, but not to the universal time (although Karen Blixen, as we shall see, seems to be an aesthetical borderfigure). Such people are often not able to discriminate between the image and the reality, and therefore they relate absolutely to the relative. They are caught in magical thinking.
In Out of Africa Karen Blixen somewhere describes the magic of the words. The natives named for instance an European after an animal, and a human being, who through many years, by all his surroundings, has been named with one animal-name, finally happens to feel himself related with the animal, he is named after; he recognizes himself in this animal.
In the natives´ ability to create myths they don´t discriminate between the word and the thing, the name and the named. The white men are really, in the eyes of the natives, both humans and animals. In the same way with their linkage of spirits and machines.
Karen Blixen tells about how the natives, because of this mythical “gift”, can put experiences on humans, which they can´t defend themselves against, and not get out of. They can make humans into symbols. She is telling, that it is a kind of magic, which is used on you, and that you later never completely can disentangle from it. It can be a painfull, heavy fate to be exposed as one or the other symbol.
But also in the Western civilizations we become exposed for such a magic. It is not something, which we have come over. Now it is happening through one or the other kind of religious or political propaganda - and in particular through the media storm, which transforms humans into consumers. ”You are what you eat!”
It is also this magic George Orwell describes in his novel 1984, with the language called NewSpeak; a language created by the rulers in order to control thinking. We all know it more or less. If you, by your surroundings, constantly are being induced some kind of image, you will in the end begin to believe in it, even if it is not true. Especially in family relations we see how family members are being induced roles, which are incredible difficult to disentangle from, because family relations also have with love to do.
All this is magical thinking, and there are a lot of thought distortions built into it, for example the thought distortion arbitrary inference, which means, that you make a causal linking of factors, which is accidental or misleading (see my book A dictionary of thought distortions). The main reason for the rise of magical thinking is that you don´t discriminate between image and reality, the map and the landscape.
True spirituality is about discriminating between language and reality. Discrimination is a central virtue in critical thinking. The Dominican mystics call this step Discriminatio, the ability to discriminate between how the energy is used temporal or religious. And despite that magical thinking actually can create something magical, then in true spirituality it is still something temporal, or relatively (black magic/occultism), which will create negative karma if practised (in my article on New Thought I have explained how this movement is a direct teaching of black magic – see my article The New Thought movement and the law of attraction).
The Orientals call the ability of discrimination viveka, discrimination, the ability to use your will on that part of the energy, you can steer yourself, and steer it towards exercises, prayer, mantras, meditation, instead of towards career, worldliness, self-unfolding, as the New Thought movement teaches it (for example read the Indian philosopher Shankara´s book The Crown-juvel of discrimination).
The same energy-process and function, which realized spiritual teachers use, can therefore be used for other purposes than spiritual. When the collective time´s energy-processes are used spiritual, then the Ego, in its egoistic isolating and self-affirmative function, steps aside, and the energy is turned into the Now, and therefore in towards the Source and the spiritual dimension. The people, who around a spiritual teacher, constitute the energy-mandala, are in this way made transparent for a higher common human spirituality.
In the Ego-inflation the contact with, and the ability to manipulate with such collective forms of energy, will be used for other purposes than spiritual. It can be creative, Ego affirmative, political, demonical and so on.
The powers that, by realized spiritual teachers, are given to others´ disposal in healing, energy transmission and spiritual information exchange, the same powers can themselves be turned in through the Ego-structures, and therewith into past and future. In this way there can be opened creative channels, created super Egos, created political leaders and popular seducers.
This is a demonical element.
Many gurus seem to have fallen into this temptation. In the story about the temptation in the desert, we can see these possible ways of using the energy pictured in anticipated form. Here you see the possibility of using the freedom and the power, to elevation of the Ego and the consequent power and material glory. But Jesus abstains from this deification of the Ego.
However, many false gurus have fallen for the temptation. And in the present time, where spirituality is blended with coaching and management theory - the belief in, that worship of money, success and winner-mentality, is the same as being in compliance with the universal laws - we will undoubtedly see an explosion of such super Egos – and experiences show, that the world will follow them.
In Doctor Faustus Thomas Mann describes, how the main character Adrian Leverkühn discovers and releases such collective powers and is using them to intensify his musical creativity to genius heights. He goes deliberately into a demonizing-process by making love with the whore Esmeralda, whereby he conscious catches syphilis, for then to use the inner pole-tension of this disease to heighten his creative capacity.
Afterwards the universal energy-mandala unfolds itself out through lines of genius musical works, where both those, who perform them, and those, who listen, are being catched by the magical circle.
Thomas Mann partially builds his figure on Nietzsche, and the whole of the novel is on a collective plane about, what the Germans did under The Second World War, where demonical polarized energy spread from Hitler and the secret SS-rituals.
In Adrian Leverkühn´s dialogues with the Devil are clearly seen haughtiness and superman-feeling as the motives, which control the use of the collective creative energy.
This doesn´t mean, though, that all great art is coming through because a creative person turns the collective energies in through the Ego-structures: Thomas Mann´s musical image, which intuitively and poetical seeks to understand Hitler-Germany, is for example a contra-image to Bach´s music, which toned God to honour and mankind to uplifting. To all the great works Bach added ”Soli Deo Gloria”.
If you get in contact with collective energies it is in fact a good idea to seek to express your abilities artistically, but in a way, that directs them towards the spiritual dimension.
In another, more aesthetic-demonic scenario, you can also see some of these group-energetical polarization-phenomena around Karen Blixen.
As mentioned Karen Blixen seems, in line with the greatest artists, to be an aesthetical borderfigure between the realized and the lesser realized transmission of energy and consciousness. This is especially coming to expression in the oddity, that what she in her letters refers to as the Devil, she in her stories refers to as God.
Now, let us go into an investigation of this.
Karen Blixen´s novel Out of Africa, is in short about finding the universal images behind everything, the original, as she calls it, the ancient, where you live in accordance with yourself, with God´s plan with you.
The God in Karen Blixen´s stories, is the wild God from the Book of Job. The God, which she in her letters calls the Devil, is therefore not the God of the common, mediocre life, which in Blixen´s childhood had clipped her wings, and made her live as a slave of others ideas; that is: the ideas of the common, mediocre life (in connection with my own life and fate, I have described this in my article The Hermeneutics of Suspicion (the thought police of the self-help industry) and why I am an apostle of loafing).
Out of Africa is about Blixen´s rebellion against this mediocrity of the common life, and how she seeks the original images, which she refers to as the ancient; the ancient, both in the wild nature, with its animals and natives, but also in the aristocracy of for example her beloved Denys Finch Hatton - not in the content of aristocracy, but in its form, as an image of originality, nobility, possibilities, freedom and adventure.
Karen Blixen´s concept of aristocracy is therefore linked with her concept of the original images, the ancient, and is both directed towards certain people, who she refers to as great travellers, adventurers and dreamers, as well as the wild nature and its native people.
When Karen Blixen in 1913 travelled to Africa she was 28 years old. She was at that time lonely and proud as a descendant of great rulers or great dreamers. It was her youthful longings and dreams she travelled into. The strange, wild and dark world, which she met, she recognized. In the woods of North Zealand in Denmark, which are high and light and are penetrated by hundreds of roads and paths, like parks or great gardens, she had seen the ancient wood for her inner eye, a flowing world of great passions, which still was untouched by consciousness. In The Plough, a small story, which was printed in 1907, she had depicted the ancient wood:
”In the wood there is not safe in the night, the ancient woods are haunting. Though fallen and died for so many thousand years ago, and forgotten in the day-time, they wake up at night again, rise, just like the fallen from their graves on the battle field, and transform the world. Impassable and terrible, with a gnarled and unlimited power, the ancient wood rises. And there are heard booms in the wood from the heavy steps of the great ancient elephants, and in the whoosh of the great tops is another sound, it is the nightsong of the wood, it is the ghost of the ancient songs, which were sunged, when Earth was new. Oh, it is the voices of the ancient woods and their song about the great free Earth. It is the song of the great rivers and lakes and the great plains and the great changes, the song of the great battles, of loneliness, of freedom, of darkness, the great songs about ancient times, about the youth of the Earth, when it was wild and free - and the woods, the marshes, the great lakes and plains were its thoughts. Mankind was not born and nothing had name…”
Eight years later Karen Blixen was laying sick in a hospital in Copenhagen.
She had lost the dream of Africa, she had lost her coffee farm, had got infected with syphilis from her husband Bror Blixen, and this illness had destroyed her sexuality, her possibilities for being together with men erotical, and for having children. And she had lost her beloved Denys Finch Hatton, who got killed in an airplane crash.
But now she began to realize, that this maybe also was God´s plan with her.
In Out of Africa Karen Blixen somewhere retells a small story, she was told as a child. She calls it The Roads of Life and gets it placed in such a way, that it tips one of her completely central ideas up in the light.
The story, which actually should be drawn at the same time as it is being told, is about a man, who lives in a small round house with a small round window, and with a small triangular garden. Nearby there is a lake with a lot of fish in. One night the man wakes up because of a frightful noise, he gets up and goes out after the sound. It becomes a terrible trip. Twice successive it happens, that he first falls over a stone and after that in three ditches successive. At last it shows, that there has happened a break in the dam of the lake; he then repairs the hole and walks tired home.
At the same time as the story is being told the storyteller draws the lines in the man's route, and if you now follow these lines from the house to the lake and back again, then there is coming a quite nice image of a stork out of it.
Karen Blixen´s following comment to the story was:
“I am glad that I have been told this story, and shall remember it in the hour of need. The man in the story was cruelly deceived, and had obstacles put in his way. He must have thought: “What ups and downs! What a run of bad luck!” He must have wondered what was the idea of all his trials, he could not know it was a stork. But through them all he kept his purpose in view, nothing made him turn round and go home, he finished his course, he kept his faith. That man had his reward. In the morning he saw the stork. He must have been laughed out loud then.
The tight place, the dark pit in which I am now lying, of what bird is it the talon? When the design of my life is complete, shall I, shall other people, see a stork?
Infandum, Regina, jubes renovare dolarem. Troy in flames, seven years of exile, thirteen good ships lost. What is to come out of it? “Unsurpassed elegance, majestic stateliness, and sweet tenderness.”
So when Karen Blixen was lying in her sickbed, and after having realized, that this maybe was God´s plan with her - she made a pact with the Devil, that she from now on could change everything into stories. And in her stories, and in her following life as a storyteller, she realized the dreams she had had as a young woman.
All her following stories, for example Seven Gothic Tales, are reflections of her own experiences with destiny. They are all about how to find the dream-tracks and songlines in the artwork of your life - God´s plan with you - and about people who live in accordance with these power lines, and about people who don´t live in accordance with them (see my article What is karma?).
These themes continue in Karen Blixen´s storytelling ever after.
And Karen Blixen herself became, in her pact with the Devil, an embodiment of the same demonical element, which fascinated Milton, Romanticism, Baudelaire, etc. The Devil haunted in her, and around her, just like he haunted in figure of Prospero in Shakespeare´s The Tempest, as Mefistoteles in Goethe´s Faust, or as Conchis in John Fowles´ The Magus.
He haunts in the change of Karen Blixen´s looks, the change of the beautiful, brightly dressed woman, into the blackdressed witch-like woman. Karen Blixen even liked to speak about herself as a witch, since she considered a witch as someone, who has contact with the deep, ancient secrets and powers. And this is not only something symbolical. Karen Blixen´s access to the collective time's astral worlds, her transformation into a witch, her paranormal abilities, are something completely real, which several times have been depicted by people, who stood her close.
In the realized transmission of energy and consciousness the sexuality is transformed through exercises, prayer and meditation. In Karen Blixen´s case it is happening through conscious taken over unhappy fate, partially her illness, partially the death of the beloved (a theme which by the way is well known and very used in art and literature, for example in Goethe´s Faust). This conscious turned inwards sexuality, opened her to knowledge about, and experiences of, the collective time and its images – and maybe also about the universal time and its images. Hereby was released an extensive and common human energy, which expressed itself in the existential environment around herself, as the Source of energy.
She created an energy-mandala around herself, a magical circle. You can directly feel the magic just by reading her books. It waves out of her stories, just like it also can be felt in books, which are written about her.
The magical circle of poets and men of letters (among whom Thorkild Bjørnvig, Aage Henriksen, Jørgen Gustava Brandt and Jørgen Kalchar), who moved around Karen Blixen on Rungstedlund, were after own statements, in works and scriptures, grabbed by a strange indefinable magic. They were lovers, but however clearly not lovers in ordinary sense. They were in apprenticeship, but not in apprenticeship in ordinary sense; they were in pact with, and weaved together with Karen Blixen, and at the same time they came deeper in towards their own creative potentials. They were drawn into the collective time. Both in their being together with Karen Blixen, and in their works, they melted together with a world of archetypes, primordial images, myths and dreams. All of it was changed into stories.
What she referred to as God´s plan with you, she also referred to, as that to find your role in the story, and since she herself was the storyteller, she didn't mind forcing the circle around her to find their roles in her story. To adhere to God´s plan with you, just like the man in the story about the stork, she could also refer to, as that to keep the author's idea clear. And the author was herself. The roles in this play she referred to as marionettes. The good marionettes are rewarded, not with well being or special happiness, but with a fate, an image that was remembered, for example a stork. They would get to see the dream-tracks and the songlines in the artwork of their lifes – God´s, or the author's plan with them.
She could in other words refer to herself as God himself, or the Devil himself. The witch. She could do this, because she apparently was conscious about herself manifesting an universal image. She referred to herself as being 3000 years old and of the same age as the prophet Esajas, whom she had an intensive, conflict-accented relationship with. And all of it, her own fate, the relationship with her students, can be found reflected in her stories in a fount of variations. Reality and stories are melting together.
The initiation ritual into this magical circle was the same for each of them. She told the individual person the story of her disease, and that she in her sickroom had a visit from the Devil, which she entered into the pact with, that she from that moment of would be able to transform everything that happened to her into stories. Furthermore that if they mixed blood with a witch, they would get access to the same ancient, deep secrets and powers, which she herself possessed. They would get an image, they would get to see the dream-tracks and the songlines in the artwork of their lifes – God´s, or the author's plan with them.
That Karen Blixen herself, through her fate and her distinctive attitude to this fate, opened her mind to the collective time's polar relationships, is without any doubt. That she radiated an enormous witch-like eros and at the same time a dramatic tragic fate, is also without any doubt.
This, not only personal creative power, therefore constellated - in its quality of collective - a circle of highly intelligent and sensitive men, who together with Karen Blixen, constituted this fascinating energy-mandala-phenomenon.
That Karen Blixen wanted to transmit her special knowledge about how to intensify creative energy to her closest relatives in the circle, appears from Aage Henriksen´s energy-experience with her in 1958.
The following description of Henriken´s energy-experience is very close to my own experiences of the kundalini-power (see my article The awakening of kundalini). I have first late in my life found out what happened in the life of Aage Henriksen and Karen Blixen, and is of course even more mystified over that I somehow always have had an intuitive sense of this connection.
Aage Henriken describes his experience with the awakening of kundalini – and how Karen Blixen was connected with this awakening - in The Irrepressible on page 146:
”During the Christmas Holidays I had circled mystified around these stories and special around ‘The Cloak.’ In this story there happens a transferring of power and soul, from one human being to another, and it happens in that moment, where the old master takes the cloak of his own shoulders and puts it around Angelo´s. I now began to talk about the story and weaved Angelo´s night in the prison - where he sits as hostage for his teacher, and become torned up from the ground - together with bygone years´ events between her and me.
”’Yes, I don't really understand, what it is, you are saying,’ she answered.
“Then the conversation silenced, and there went some time, before I sensed, that the room between us somehow had become alive, as in the time with my yogateacher, but now different. There came a radiation from her, which grew in power, until it was as a hard, dare wind, which somehow came innermost from the bones and which caused, that my eyes were watering.
“When I lifted my head and was looking at her, she was almost hidden in a cloud of scarlet aura, in which the white, whirling phosphorus-light floated as a disc. God must know, how I myself was looking like – as at a deathbed, or as a thief?
“In this way it lasted for a long time, I don´t know how long, maybe ten minutes. She herself interrupted the mute, intense being together, by dry and short saying: ”Now come!” as if we had entered into an agreement. The situation developed itself and changed itself momentarily. Once again a being together with Karen Blixen had slowly changed itself into an optical instrument, in which the impurity of one´s own heart comes to sight.
“I knew, that if I went with her now, I would arrive somewhere, which I nothing knew about, but even if the Earth had begun to shake, I would never have got the idea, that I still would be able to break off and say no. I then sat down on the edge of the bed and bent over her, as she wanted to, and at the same time I sent my thoughts miles around for help and protection for both of us. Then she took both her hands up around my throat, and drilled a finger hard and long into the back of my neck, for finally to stroke me over both shoulders. When I was straightening up, she broked the silence with the unexpected request:
”’Now say a verse.’
“The first, which felt into my thoughts, was the beginning lines to Sarastro´s aria in The Magic Flute, which also, as it probably was the meaning, contained my understanding of, what this hour was all about, or what I wished, it should be about:
“In diesen heil´gen Hallen
Kennt man die Rache nicht,
Und ist ein Mensch gefallen,
Fürhrt Liebe ihn zur Pflicht.
“I felt dizzy, when I got up from the uncomfortable position. Is was as if the whole of my abdomen pulled itself together in cramp and sent strong streams up in the head. I wanted to say something, but she stopped me:
”’You shall go now.’”
We get the impression, that Karen Blixen knew – at least intuitively – what she did. According to Aage Henriksen (p. 148) the blockade obstructed the kundalini-stream at the back of the neck, so that the head started to shake. The intensifying of the creative energy necessarily has to do with the throat-chakra, since this centre is focus-spot for creative energy-transformations (see my article What are chakras?).
Aage Henriksen, who is acquainted with the spiritual practice, and has an active kundalini, was aware, that she in this way led his consciousness away from the spiritual dimension, and into the area of the collective images. This is the demonical element, which finally forced him to break away from her. He writes, that she would stick at nothing in order to prevent her young friends and acquaintances in exceeding the borders of the earthmoon-kingdom, in which she was queen. A part of the same demonical element caused Thorkild Bjørnvig to break his pact with her.
Did Karen Blixen maybe in the pact with Thorkild Bjørnvig, and in the energy-manipulation with Aage Henriksen, try to transmit the secret of the creative intensifying? Did she, like others, who are initiates in the collective power´s nature and ways, try to transmit this existential knowledge? It seems so.
All of Aage Henriksen´s books are about how he sees these processes reflected in various fictional works of art. His starting point is the transformation of inhibited sexuality into art, which Freud called sublimation. According to Aage Henriksen, a line of great Danish-Norwegian poets have personally experienced and pondered over this transformation, as for example Grundtvig, Henrik Ibsen and Sophus Claussen. As Aage Henriksen says, then it shows, that their problems for a long time had been known within Europe's so-called esoterical traditions. In their highly extended and strange populated space of consciousness, it is seen, that two streams, which each are surrounded by a respective experience-circle, cross each other in the love of human beings and are the Source of many complications: the direction towards the one and the direction towards the many. It is, according to Henriksen, this knowledge, which Goethe, with his connection to the Masonic Order, has pictured in The Fairytale and in Wilhelm Meister´s Apprenticeship, and which Rudolf Steiner, who had the theosophical movement as one of his conditions, reproduced in his Mystery Dramas.
Furthermore Aage Henriksen tells about Karen Blixen, who in her works, according to him, sovereign managed the strong, ancient secrets. It was, among other things, she who opened the great background world for him.
How demonical was it? It is an open question, because as already mentioned, what she in her letters refers to as the Devil, she in her stories refers to as God. She keeps on being an aesthetic borderfigure between the realized and lesser realized transmission of energy and consciousness. As Kierkegaard says, then God´s nature always unites the opposite.
3. The unrealized transmission of energy and consciousness
The energy will tend to dance in a polar mandala around people, who have broken through to the polarity of the collective images. Whether this energy comes into sight as music, as art, as religious love or as wisdom, then the energy will seek to stream out and spread out in polarized circles around the Source. The more knowledge, that exists about this, the larger the pedagogical effect after all can be. But with knowledge follows choices. When these structures become conscious, then people partly themselves can decide, which forms and which motives, should be the definitive.
As observations of the great spiritual teachers show, then the possibility for unselfish use constantly seems to be neighbour to the possibility of Ego-reinforcing use. The same energy, which freely can be given to others as growth, the giver himself can take to intensification of his own isolating particularity. The choice seems to be dependent of the level of realization work and ethical practice.
The third type of polarized collective energy-phenomena, is the mainly unrealized transmission of energy and consciousness.
The unrealized transmission of energy and consciousness is, just like the lesser realized, characterised by people, who admittedly have an opening to the collective time, but not to the universal. Such people are often not able to discriminate between the image and the reality, and therefore they relate absolutely to the relative.
The collective time manifests itself in a widely and indefinite area, for example could a broad spectrum of common human activities and organizations be called manifestations of the collective time: parties, state formations, wars, work communities, concerts, clans, tribes and sects, mass psychological phenomenons, religious parishioners, fashion streams, group souls.
Such incalculable common human undertakings are manifestations of collective energy– or lifeprocesses, in which there are great powers in play in the form of collective images, which work in opposites; energy, which originates from sexuality.
In individual persons, who pass on an unrealized transmission of energy and consciousness, the opening to the collective time today often lies around that to be well-known or famous.
We live in a postmodern society, where the distinction between reality and appearance/superficies is about to disappear. Reality is often the images, we receive through the stream of information. And it becomes more and more difficult to see, which objective reality that lies behind. It seems more and more to be the images, which are real, and not some behind lying reality. In that sense all images are equal true, but they are not equal good, for some images are more fascinating than others, some images affect us more than others. Therefore the expression of the image has come in focus. The expression of the image – its aesthetics – decides, whether it fascinates us or bores us. What apply for today, is the intensity and seduction of the expressions. The new truth/value criterion is, whether something is interesting or boring. Eternal values such as goodness, truth and beauty fall more and more away.
Around the so-called ”celebrities” - rockstars, movie stars, models, royals, - there are therefore today formed energy-mandalas, which transmit the forces from the collective time; powers which release, and manifest, collective images, and therefore behaviour. Just try to notice, in what degree ”the celebrities” make people behave, dress, act and believe.
But the energy-mandala can also form itself around ordinary people, who of one or the other reason, through transformed sexuality, have accomplished an opening to the collective time, and who, by turning the energy in through the Ego-structures, develop themselves into super Egos, political leaders and popular seducers such as Hitler and Stalin.
In the wars and collective orgies, which such people bring about, there also are triggered, and manifested, different collective images, which always are polarized in opposites such as for example hate and love, good and evil.
And the energy, which brings about this, builds on transformed sexuality. Ordinary sexuality is saved against, and closed, in relation to the collective time. But not entirely though. Underneath the common sexuality smoulder the depths. Underneath lie the fantasies and the images, all the tabooed and suspected desires.
These backgrounds have, in our time, clearly become visible in pornography, in brothel-activity, in the sex advertisements of the daily newspapers. But the whole of this underlying sexual astrality is precisely characterized by being split from the respectable accepted prescribed sexuality. There are many reasons for this: anxiety, condemnation, sin-conceptions, society repression.
The Western civilization has from Christianity inherited and taken over a very characteristic religious worldimage. Sex is sin. Sex is in the highest a necessary evil, you in the safe, god-guaranteed and eternal-made institution of marriage have to give way to. And God is good. God is creative.
Therefore the destructive, the subversive, has become overlooked. It doesn´t belong to the productive nature of God. But because it is such evident a fact, you have to do something about it. We have then suitable handed the destructive over to the Devil, who is a fallen angel, an outcast and unhappy, without possibility for salvation and redemption. Unfortunately we have in this religious worldimage got the Devil, the evil, the destructive, and the sexual weaved together. And this enormous complex can we basically not do anything about. Of course. Since it after all constitutes half of the world and reality. God maintains the creation every moment. But what or who is then the great power, which every moment breaks down? Is that not created by God? And unless it is created by God, then God is after all not almighty. The whole of this world-image seems insufficient.
Since the destructive (aggression, breakdown, violence) not belongs to God, then it is of evil. But life on our planet is however build up in that way, that all higher forms of life live by destroying, eating and breaking down and digesting other life! So if life itself, in its nature, is of evil, then there is no meaning of life.
In order to rescue this scheme of things you either end up in Manichaeism or heresy. Either there are two worlds and two gods: the one god is good and creative and loving. Opposite this god there then exists a dark, destructive and evil devil. The children of the light, who eternally are fighting and leading wars against the children of darkness. A war-crazy religiousness.
Or you end up, Christian seen, in heresy by being led to believe the following:
1: God is also destructive and is responsible for breakdown, death and dissolution and entropy.
2: The Devil is therefore a repressed, outcast unhappy redemption-needing structure.
Sexuality, as the most direct urge of life, is not sin, on the contrary sexuality is a holy and creative activity. This, Christian seen, heretically outlook on life can however rescue the meaning and connection in cosmos and in the inner and outer reality of Man.
Because when the destructive and the sexual also belong under the divine, then Man has the possibility for, in religious spiritual openness, to take the responsibility for his part of the sexual, and his part of the destructive.
The danger is, that when sexuality and destruction are excluded from the divine – and herewith from the spiritual dimension – then people are tempted, in powerlessness, to run away from their responsibility. And that is precisely what mankind do. Wars, torture, anger, atomic bombs, chemical war, plague-weapons. No one have the responsibility. All of it makes it difficult to assign responsibility. And the result is, that no responsible is taking care of destructivity. It rambles wrestless around, un-released, demonized. Everybody is afraid of this destructive evil, but no one takes the responsibility for his own anger.
Therefore it becomes so, that the opposites in the collective time (right/wrong, good/evil, light/dark) constantly slide over in each other. They can´t be separated. What you believe is good, shows suddenly to have evil consequences. This we learn again and again – see my book A dictionary of thought distortions for examples.
And it all originates from transformed sexuality. Practically all people have contact with some kind of sexual fantasy based on a primordial image. It can shine through in daydreams, masturbation-images, pornographic fascination or similar. It is concealed. Often unspoken. Frequently people play an inner video at the same time as their intercourse. And as a rule these hidden and blacked out fantasies and stimulations are not open, nothing the partners dare to tell each other about. Sometimes these astral images are shining through in the nightly dreams. But the usual is, that these hints are not explored, nor integrated in the partners´ normal life together. If they are realized, they live a fantasy-life. These desires and wantings are maybe fulfilled through novel-magazines, through pornography or lived through afar from the daily life in the sexworlds of the large cities, with their specialities and offers.
Hereby the shadowy and wild growing underground of sexuality, are split from the more accepted love-life. The so-called perverted or romantic-fantastic images and desires, are excluded from the space of love. And when these dark fantasies and desires are excluded, they become darker, more distorted, more repressed, more perverted. In the collective image of the good, the right, there is build up energy, and finally the energy will swing over in its opposition, the evil, the wrong, in order to balance an imbalance (again: see my article What is karma? – also see my articles The emotional painbody and why psychotherapy can´t heal it and The ego-inflation in the New Age and self-help industry).
The astral sexuality contains the backside of the Ego and of the desire. This collective shadow is repressed to the sexual subconcious.
Daphne Patai is a feminist scholar and author. She is a leading critic of the politicization of education, in particular of the decline of free speech on college campuses as programs conform to pressures from feminists and other identity groups.
After spending ten years with a joint appointment in women´s studies and in Portuguese, Patai became highly critical of what she saw as the imposition of a political agenda on educational program (what I call The Matrix Conspiracy). Together with the philosophy of science professor Noretta Koertge she wrote the book Professing Feminism (1994). The book analyzes practices within women´s studies that the authors felt were incompatible with serious education and scholarship – above all, the explicit subservience of education to political aims (the background for this is the so-called postmodern intellectualism – read my article Constructivism: the postmodern intellectualism behind New Age and the self-help industry).
Patai´s thesis is that a failure to defend the integrity of education, and a habit of dismissing knowledge and research on political grounds, not only seriously hurts our students but also leaves feminists helpless in trying to defend education against other ideological incursions.
Prominent among Patai´s concerns are what she sees as draconian sexual harassment regulations as implemented in the academical world. She argues that contemporary feminism is poisoned by a strong element of “heterophobia”: a pronounced hostility to sexual interaction between men and women and an effort to suppress it through micromanagement of everyday relations. This thesis is developed at lenght in her 1998 book Heterophobia: Sexual Harassment and the future of feminism.
Daphe Patai is the inspiration to my thesis about the development of a new Puritanism, where traditional religious confession-techniques have been transformed into psychotherapy (see my article The new feminism and the philosophy of women´s magazines). This new Puritanism has from Christianity inherited and taken over the above-mentioned characteristic religious worldimage, that sex is sin. Sex is in the highest a necessary evil. Therefore the destructive, the subversive, again is becoming overlooked. But because it is such evident a fact, the radical feminists have to do something about it. Like in Christianity they have therefore suitable handed the destructive over to the Devil. And in this worldimage they have got the Devil, the evil, the destructive, and the sexual weaved together.
There are namely a painful irony in the fact, that our days feminists so uncritical have affiliated the methods, which psychotherapists and hypnotists pretend can uncover repressed memories from childhood about sexual abuse and more bizarre things such as satanic rituals, cannibalistic orgies, alien abduction, past lifes etc. In this way they paradoxically come to remind about earlier times´ Christian inquisitions, a kind of psycho-religious inquisitions (see my articles The devastating New Age turn within psychotherapy, and Hypnosis, hypnotherapy and the art of self-deception).
There is another aspect of this, which might seem like an opposition to the New Puritanism of radical feminism, but which is a part of the same Matrix Conspiracy: because those of the New Age worshippers who today call themselves witches or sorcerers are often anti-Christian, pagan, and woman-centered, or satanic. New Age often exalt whatever the Church condemned (such as egoism and healthy sexuality in adults whether homosexual or not) and condemn whatever the Church exalted (such as self-denial and the subservient role of women).
The problem is, that the reductionist aspect of The Matrix Conspiracy does, that no one will take the responsibility for their part of the sexuality, and therefore for their part of the destructive (see my article The pseudoscience of reductionism and the problem of mind).
The Ego wants. The backside of this Egocentredness is radical Ego-sovereignty. So the Ego, the desire, the violence and the power, are combined in the dark collective primordial images and fantasies: incest, sado-masochism, homosexuality, group sex, cannibalism, sacrifice, death-images – all these archetypes lie underneath the common sexuality, and constitute the dark astral underground in the collective time. Often illustrated in the Gothic tale, first by Edgar Allan Poe in his Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque (1839), later by for example Henry James in his The Turn of the Screw (1898), which dealed with the corset tight Victorianism. And of course Karen Blixen. Today we perhaps see the works of Tim Burton as a respond to our time´s Puritanism.
When you in that way bind yourself in the one pole of an opposition, yes, then you create a resistance, and therefore a force to, and a dependence of the opposite pole, which causes, that the mind, the sexuality, is becoming anchored in, and determined by these basic mechanisms.
The magical mean, which can raise the mind´s hypnotic fascination of the primordial images of desire, of power game and of Egoism - is religion and supporting exercises, including the monastic vows about poverty, chastity and obedience (see my article The value of having a religion in a spiritual practice). Religion and supporting exercises consist in realizing the collective time, not opening up for it, not living through it, as psychotherapy wants it, but in realizing the nature of the demonic primordial images of desire, violence and Egoism.
Why the vows about poverty, chastity and obedience?
Because falling in love (and having a sexual relationship) with another human being depends on images, partially collected from the more collective depths of time, partially from your personal images, and therefore from your growing up conditions. However the original images of falling in love (sexuality) are coming from the deepest and most universal images of time. These images are, like mandalas, composite by opposites, therefore a kind of syntheses. As Aristophanes claims in Plato´s Symposium (which is about love itself), then Man in his original mythological state was a double being. However when the Ego is coming in contact with such an image, then the Ego divides it in pieces in order to analyze it, understand it. And by doing so you get all the comparisons with earlier and the hopes/fears of something else, and the separated opposites such as subject and object, love and hate, male and female.
In this way a female gets an inner male image. A man gets an inner female image. Concerning homosexuality, then the circumstances, which constitute the lifesituation of the individual, have created another situation, but the inner image will under any circumstances reflect a longing after unification with an opposite pole, therefore a longing after wholeness. Falling in love (sexual turn on) arises when these images become projected on another human being.
That way falling in love, and sexual turn on, implies a fount of contradictions. Falling in love is for example dependency. The other side of dependency is anger and fear and powerlessness over being so dependent. Furthermore the inner images can themselves be split. This can imply, that you cannot turn on sexually upon types you fall in love with, and vice versa. The man´s inner female image can for example be divided up in the madonna/whore type. The woman´s inner male image in the hard/soft type.
And since falling in love, and sexual turn on, depends on images, then reality will gradually uncover these illusions, and then the alienation and apartness appear, and therefore the mistrust. Concerning sexual turn on, you therefore have to create new, more and more extreme, images, in order to have an ongoing turn on.
All this lies in the collective time as a kind of original sin, and it is therefore almost impossible for the individual person, for the personal time, to dissolve this, at the same time as you are in a sexual relationship. Especially in the Egoextreme of our time (see my article The emotional painbody and why psychotherapy can´t heal it).
Within the New Age-ideology the concept of Tantra is admittedly very popular; that is: where you speak about transforming sexual energy into spiritual energy through relations with one or several sexual partners. There is no doubt about, that Tantra in its original form in monasteries in India, has produced enlightened masters, but the Tantra, which I see widely-spread in modern Western forms - often mixed with psychotherapy, and a bit of "wisdom" from the New Age-movie The Secret - is, in most cases, thoroughly stupid. Here it is of course the Ego, which invents one of its usual tricks in order to get its primordial image (sexual wishes/fantasies) satisfied: “It is God himself, who justifies my sexual wishes/fantasies, and that I therefore have to live them through!”
I have in my philosophical counseling-practice talked with many people, both men and women, who have practised tantra. All the men I have talked with, directly admit that they exclusively did it for, either to have sex with one, or preferably several, beautiful women. When it comes to the women I talked to, then the admission is not so directly. But it is evident, that especially women, in Tantra, gets a justification of being able to get some sexual fantasy´s primordial image satisfied; that is to say: to practise sophisticated sex, both with one partner, but also with many different men.
Many of these tantra-movements, and their rituals, therefore in a remarkable way remind about the rituals in swinger clubs and sequences from porno movies, where they also seek to get sexual fantasies´ primodial images satisfied.
But in Tantra the shadowy and wild growing underground of sexuality doesn't become split from the more accepted love-life. The so-called perverted or romantic-fantastic images and desires are not excluded from the space of love. And therefore these dark fantasies and desires don't become darker, more distorted, more repressed, more perverted.
This is because that it becomes justified through the combination with some spiritual concepts, such as meditation. That is of course fine enough, but there is a lot of spiritual self-deceit involved in it, because it is the Ego, which controls the process. Also because of the postmodern intellectualism in New Age, where very few people actually have an ongoing and continuous spiritual practice, but go shopping from master to master, teaching to teaching.
The ordinary Ego-consciousness functions by being identified with the physical world, with instincts, sexuality, emotions and collective ideals. Religion and supporting exercises work through these aspects by means of for example the essence, which exists in the basic monastic vows: poverty, chastity and obedience. These promises work with a restructuring of the Ego´s ownership to things, food and power, and they re-structure sexuality and emotions. First thereafter the mystical process can begin. No form of modern Tantra can, as far as I can see, bring about this. On the contrary the Ego uses it as a trick of self-assertion.
But it also has to be mentioned, that religion and supporting exercises necessarily must develop into an art of life, where you actually are working with realization and ethical practice – or else you end up as a hypocrite. And that we also have seen many examples on.
In our time, where the Ego-structures are in a maximum, the astral caricatures of Egoism therefore also are in their maximum. In our time, which is characterized by a consumerism, where all deeper values have been split off, and where everything is measured after if it is boring or interesting, sexuality has got an exaggerated big importance, because it maybe is the only experience we have of something deeper. But sexuality works, just like all energy, in wave movements and pendulum movements. In order to be able to get a sexual ignition and experience, it requires that you build sexual energy up in a wave. This wave then breaks in the sexual experience. Hereafter follows a trough of the waves. But in our growth-fanatical consumer culture, we don't accept the valley. We want the peak experiences, the rises, but we complain over the valleys, the falls. Therefore we all the time try to maintain the rise by providing it with new sexual images, fantasies etc. If the energy laws were really understood, we would accept the trough of the waves as well as the wavecrests.
And these, the Ego´s images of desire and of sexual pleasure, will, because of, that energy also functions as pendulum movements, gradually begin to switch over in their demonic primordial images, which we have repressed to the collective time - they begin to become more and more extreme and therefore perverted.
And because we have got the Devil, the evil, the destructive and the sexual, weaved together, this also begins to appear in a rise of aggression, violence and pollution. The outer pollution corresponds in that way to an equivalent dark collective inner pollution. The outer war-crazy armament, corresponds to an inner astral tension in power, aggression and anxiety. That which caused, that the wise old of the East termed our time Kali Yuga, the dark age.
Most obvious these dark primordial images manifest themselves in acts of war. Beside the actual acts of war, which never can be said to be true, but always distorted and perverted, the sexual energies - which you have got tied together with destructivity - are triggered in the soldiers, who rape and plunder the conquered women and towns.
In acts of war exists the most clear demonical element. There is not so much to misunderstand. No, the misunderstandings take place in the actions, which lie ahead of the war, in which a lot of seduction-art, and therefore thought distortions, are active. And the archetypical popular seducer is, as already suggested, of course Lucifer.
Everywhere we see a tendency to that the images of the Ego-extreme (which is about becoming something, to get success, to conquer a place on the top, to become a winner) have begun to switch over in their demonical primordial images. The dark images in the collective time have begun to manifest themselves. We see it in the medias, in movies and in books.
Behind the whole of this midnightrambler-complex in the individual, a collective image shows itself. The complex exposes itself as an emanation of evil, of the Devil.
In one of Rolling Stones´ masterpieces Sympathy For The Devil the text goes:
Please allow me to introduce myself
I´m a man of wealth and taste
I´ve been around for many a long, long year
I´ve stolen many a man´s soul and faith
I was around when Jesus Christ had his moments of doubt and pain
I made damn sure that Pilate washed his hands and
Sealed his fate.
I stuck around St. Petersburg
When I saw it was time for a change
I killed the Tzar and his ministers
Anastasia screamed in vain
I rode a tank, held a gen´ral´s rank
When the blitzkrieg raged and the bodies stank
I watched with glee while your kings and queens
Fought for ten decades for the Gods they made
I shouted out, “Who killed the Kennedy´s?”
When after all it was you and me.
Just as every cop is criminal
And all the sinners, Saints
As heads is tails, just call me Lucifer
“Cause I´m in need of some restraint.”
So if you meet me, have some courtesy
Have some sympathy and some taste
Use all your well-learned politesse
Or I´ll lay your soul to waste.
In ”Sympathy for the Devil” Mick Jagger seems to have sensed these connections. At some of the concerts, where this tune was played and sunged, there was triggered off rape, ordinary sexuality, murder and births. The song is the hell preacher´s hint of the only way out. The Ego has to descend down into the deep of evil, has to take it seriously, see it in the eyes, realize and feel, that evil is in there. The Ego has to learn to get on with its complex, instead of avoiding/ignoring it as the New Thought movement is advising people to do (see my article The New Thought movement and the law of attraction).
The complex is there, it requires a name, it wants voice, time, awareness. If not, it destroys the consciousness and drowns the world in pollution and violence.
My Ebook Karen Blixen - The Devil´s Mistress is an expansion of this article
Another related book: Lucifer Morningstar - a Philosophical Love Story