Sabian Symbols: Lamp of physical enlightenment at the left temple
This universal idea is best expressed through planets in
Sagittarius 11 (10° - 11°)
The mind tells lies, the body cannot
The typical spiritual seeker in the modern era has either a very impressive intelligence or a remarkable ability to trust their intuition – or in some cases both of these properties of mind. It is rare indeed to find a person who adds to this the full and passionate involvement of the physical body; yet we must if we want to optimise the knowledge.
All spiritual practices have their physical aspect, typically registered as body states; we need to know how to embody a wisdom-practice. This translates as learning a set of physical attributes to do with breathing rhythms and a body condition that allows a relaxed preparedness to support a particular action. In Sufism it is said that if lacking this then the practice is ‘empty’.
IN THE LEFT SECTION OF AN ARCHAIC TEMPLE, A LAMP BURNS IN A CONTAINER SHAPED LIKE A HUMAN BODY
In the left section of an archaic temple, a lamp burns in a container shaped like a human body
The world is a laboratory for the soul to discover relationship between meaning and consequences
The world is a laboratory for the soul. The left temple refers to the place where we intuitively seek inner understandings, and yet there is always a reminder of the need to provide physical support as well as spiritual. In fact temples have to be managed well, illuminated at night with electricity or candles, in order to serve their intended sacred purpose.
Every reality is provided for in our laboratory-temple, not only for us now, but for everyone forever. The very unlikeliness, of this fact of existence, makes it difficult for us to grasp quite how free we are. The reconciliation of spiritual and physical is in no way different to the reconciliation between our fear-begotten limitations and the truth and experience of our freedom.
Inner, spiritual outreach leads to wider understanding, and we are encouraged to pursue such a course if we are to be free and happy. Free will requires that we choose one position, and then typically other people will compel us to come to terms with both sides of the situation that we have chosen to study. This leads us to refine personality and develop loftier spiritual perceptions.
This image is to do with optimising personal effectiveness by making the most of past achievements. Before we experience something new, our knowledge of it is limited and inconsequential. We are drawn, by curiosity and inner conviction, to try out various ways of living our lives and it is important to notice what happens as a result of what we do and say.
Nothing but confusion will come from a witless process of trial and error. We need to study and learn from our attempts and discoveries, and reincorporate new realisations into our mind set, if we are to have a clear and successful approach to life.
Of course, ceaseless experimentation with modes of self-expression has certain benefits. Without trying new ideas, we have no way forward at all.
Yet, in each relationship and activity, we need to balance meaning against consequences, cost against benefit, and bring about reconciliation between apparent opposites – things that pull in different directions.