Greetings, Fratres et Sorores!
I recently posted the following questions about G.D. Color Magick to Pat Zalewski’s ‘Golden Dawn Group’ forum. I think you folks will find it interesting as well. This is a subject that has been all-too underexplored, and I think these questions need to be asked as a starting point to further discussion. You are all, of course, invited to reply with your own findings.
Original post: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/golden-dawn-group/message/16022 (I highly suggest you check out the developing thread there as well as the comments section here.)
I would love to see some discussion of the Golden Dawn’s theories of color magick. It is a subject that gets glossed over quite a bit, at least in the published literature. Primarily, I would like to hear some of your thougths on how the colors were applied in a practical sense.
I have seen it stated that the Queen Scale colors are receptive, and should therefore be used when we wish to draw something to us. The King Scale colors, on the other hand, are active and should therefore be used when we wish to project an energy outward into the world. On the surface this might seem to make sense. King = Active and Queen = Passive is pretty basic. Plus, the Minutum Mundum has the Sephiroth in Queen Scale and the Paths in King – as the Paths transmit energy from one place to antoher while the Sephiroth receive it. (BUT – more on this later.)
However, this interpretation seems overly simplistic – and comes with some significant problems. For example, the walls of the Vault are in the King Scale, but I see nothing about the Vault that indicates its intent is *only* to radiate energy out into the world. During initiations and much of the Vault work I have seen, they are used to draw energy into the Vault and the adept working therein.
Another interesting conflict comes with the Minutum Mundum itself. When we view that diagram from the Four World perspective – an entire Minutum Mundum in each World – what we call the “Sephiroth” technically reside in Atziluth. (Consider their analogy with the Gnostic Aeons in the Pleroma, which is evident in the Sephir Yetzirah – Chapter 1.) Then, in the following three Worlds are the Archangels, Angels and Astrological/Planetary Spheres respectively. Meanwhile, the walls of the Vault represent the Planetary Spheres that make up the physical universe or Assiah.
The conflict here is that the Sephiroth are given in the Queen Scale while the Astrological Spheres (represented by the Paths) are given in the King. One would *think*, in the Golden Dawn, that the pure Sephiroth should be in the King/Atziluth Scale and the Planetary Spheres should be in the Princess/Assiah Scale. Yet this is not the case.
That brings us back to the King = Active for the Paths and Queen = Passive for the Sephiroth concept. I called this simplistic before, because it does not illustrate a complete understanding of the Sephiroth. Each individual sphere covers a series of “stages” that run from the Receptive (receiving the energy from a previous sphere, so that the two energeis are mixed) to the Static (the pure force of the sphere in question) to the Active (transmitting its energy to the next sphere, where we find a new mixture). Much the same can be said of the Paths – which receive energy on one end and transmit it at the other.
Finally – NONE of the above even addresses the meanings and uses of the Prince and Princess Scales. These two scales are hardly ever mentioned.
I think that Olen Rush has shone some light on these conflicts, when he shared his Minutum Mundums in the different Scales. (UPDATE: Also see this link.) It suggests that the usual diagram we see is just one example, illutrating one point. Other Minutum Mundums are possible – at least one for each of the four Worlds (for starters).
But how should this translate into practical work? In my experience, the Queen Scale color of a Sephirah is used when invoking the forces of the Sephirah itself – meaning the *entire* realm of the Sephirah in question, including its Divinity, Archangelic, Angelic and Planetary forces. This is usually done for spiritual advancement (and we might assign it to Ma’aseh Berashith). Meanwhile, the King Scale color of a Planet it used when we want to focus upon an Assiatic planetary sphere – usually for practical magick (so we might assign it to Ma’aseh Merkavah). Thus, for example, we would use Orange for Hod work and Yellow for Mercury work.
But why should that be? Why would we not use the King Scale for Hod, and the Princess Scale for Mercury? (And, of course, the Queen Scale for work with Michael Hodiel and the Prince Scale for work with the Beni Elohim?)
And, along the same lines, why are the Prince and Princess Scales hardly ever used at all? What are their proper uses?
Obviously there is a lot of material to study here – and I wonder how some of our past and present adepts have made use of the Scales in their own magick.
To aid in this discussion, here are some helpful links. I’ll update this post with more links as things progress: