When I had first connected Smoke Signals to communication, I had done so in a mostly one-sided fashion. I saw smoke as something that obscured - and contemplated that it may be a harbinger of an internet shutdown. In that sense, at least on a micro-scale, I was correct. You may recall that I ended up losing my own internet connection for a while. However, there is that flip-side that I only touched on briefly: though smoke itself clouds our eyes, when it is harnessed, it can facilitate communication. A Smoke Signal is just that.
There's a ton of fire symbolism flying about lately, not the least of which was the manufactured Terry Jones 9/11 Koran-burning fiasco.
So let us peer into the smoke and try to read what it's telling us, eh?
Back in July we traveled through South Dakota, and stopped at the Crazy Horse Memorial. I had a dream the night before that I befriended and was playing with a wolf. I didn't know that I would end up on the land of the Dances with Wolves Lakota the next morning.
Alongside artwork featuring men communicating via smoke signals, there were images of peyote ceremonies. Not only did I see our old friend the Blue Bird, but he was there as a very literal representation of the smoke itself talking to us.
Since we're now looking at plant consciousness that is talking to us from the smoke, we see that these two patterns have a lot of overlap. And, just a few weeks ago, the peyote bird came back into my sights again. Melissa received a wedding gift via the mail from a friend that could not attend. I just thought it was a very pretty necklace and nothing more. But a few days ago, she asked me to help her put it on and the clasp caught my eye.
The bird shape, with the bird's head being used for the loop, gets cut down into the shape of a mushroom, does it not?
That reminds me, I looked into the etymology of the word "Ombudsman" the other day, for unrelated reasons. This bit struck me:
"The origin of the word is found in Old Norse umbuðsmann (accusative) and the word umbuds man, meaning representative (with the word umbud/ombud meaning proxy, that is someone who is authorized to act for someone else)"
Ask any hippie what they would consider to be "the Om-Bud," and I'm pretty sure I know what their answer would be. I'll give you a hint, it starts with 4 and ends in 20.
Now, cannabis and mushrooms are two different creatures and I don't want to over simplify the issue at hand, but "proxy, that is someone who is authorized to act for someone else," sure sounds a lot like words spoken by Terence McKenna and others. I used this quote once before but it bears repeating:
I couldn’t figure out whether the mushroom is the alien or the mushroom is some kind of technological artifact allowing me to hear the alien when the alien is actually light-years away, using some kind of Bell nonlocality principle to communicate. The mushroom states its own position very clearly. It says, ‘I require the nervous system of a mammal. Do you have one handy?’
My own theories take "alien" to be the same as "other." That is not to say that alien intelligences may not exist off-world, simply that they are still a component of the universe (or myself) which I associate as being separate. It is no different if I speak of a man living down the block, or a lifeform living across the galaxy, or a mushroom spore or you the reader of this text right now. There is me AND there is you.
Our commonly recognized ampersand character is a typographic ligature - the combination of two very loaded letters.
ET is the other. This AND That.
"ET phone Om"
We have spent much time looking over the fire-in-the mind pentecost symbolism, but these images remind us that is just as important that we talk of a fire in the heart, as well as a fire in the mind.
"Paranoia happens when you start getting messages via the third eye chakra
with out opening the heart first."
Of course we want our synapses to FIRE....
But what of other elements? WATER on the brain is something we are told we surely do not want. And no one likes being called an AIRhead.
But, EARTH is also seen as positive. While "Healing The Divide," Tom Waits and the Saturnian Kronos Quartet tell us we should always keep a diamond in our mind:
In another song, Get Behind The Mule, he mentions the importance of keeping "a Sapphire in your mind." The sapphire is something I've been collecting notes on for months, but I'm not ready to say what it means yet. I'm thinking it goes back to this image from the first time I wrote about the blue bird:
Another thing that hit me the other day was that the flaming tongues sprouting from the heads of those in the Pentecost images...
...sure look like they've got an idea as to what's going on.
Is the lightbulb, as symbol of our modern flame, a hint to a new sort of divine light, aided by our technological advancements? The internet and computer intelligences have helped me get to the point where I am now. How about you?
Maybe it's a little bit of everything. All of the others. Maybe we're being aided by plant intelligence, and computer intelligence, and extra-terrestrial intelligence, and animal intelligence - even insect.
"Holy Spirit, Batman, my cosmic awareness is tingling."
Now, if you ask me, I'd say we basically have two possibilities. One, is that we're all one infinite consciousness and all these seemingly different entities are an illusion (as are you and I). The other option, is that we are all intertwined, yet separate - and that we need to start looking at ways to coexist in symbiotic relationships.
Spider-Man, the comic character who should know better since he's got those flaming tongues sprouting from his head, put a dangerous spin on the term "symbiotic" for a whole generation if not more.
In the third movie, the black costume just basically lands in Spider-Man's lap with no explanation. It was an alien lifeform that was carried here on a falling meteorite, just like mushrooms may actually have been. (This also syncs nicely with the Flaming Hare, Fiery Birth, iCrator and Step-Ember posts as well as a powerful dream I had two nights ago).
The original comic version of the "symbiotic costume" is a little different. He gets the new alien costume during Marvel's "Secret War"
Interesting that we should be having this conversation while we are currently in the midst of our own Secret War, as narrated by Christopher Knowles.
An interesting factoid from the comic run, the symbiotes were harmed by two things, Fire and Sonics, both of which have become increasingly important symbols in my work.
Click here if you really need a fix of super-geeky symbiote history, but suffice it to say that Spider-Man comics make symbiotic relationships seem evil. Parasitic even.
We've all been in relationships that were one-sided, we've all been taken advantage of. But we should never confuse that with a symbiotic relationship. True symbiotic relationships are founded on trust and love, they provide us with the opportunity to live in harmony.
Whether we are one single universal awareness, or an intricately connected web of individuals who then make up something larger, or a seemingly paradoxical combination of the two - is not something we need to argue over at the moment, since the moral is really the same either way.
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."