Tai Chi Y2D32: at 10,000 feet


If any external factor ends my daily practice, it may be altitude. I’m currently in Quito, Ecuador, on my semi-annual “adventure” with my father. And the combination of plane air, followed by thin air, may defeat me ere this trip is over. If yesterday was perfunctory, today was barely “complete” by any reasonable definition.

But, it was complete. And this place is beautiful. Ugly too, in ways, yet extraordinary in others. Outside our hotel window is this lovely, elegant square — and it’s not hard to see the long, archonic reach of empire. The young Ecuadoreans I observed kissing in the portico of the church, though — they’re not prepared to let the memory of past empires, both royal and spiritual, run rough shod over them in the present moment. As a North American in the South, reading student papers about the 1823 Monroe Doctrine and the Bolivarian Liberations, and America’s war with Mexico, I’m uncomfortably aware of how much the Archons of our own time are replaying this story here — and how much we’re potentially viewed as representatives of those powers, will we or nill we.

Flying in to South America for the first time in my life, I couldn’t help noticing that I saw the fourfold elemental structures of the occult philosophy at work over the landscape below. The whole north coast, and panama, was shrouded in cloudforms and fog. Dimly glimpsed through this obscuration was a beach, and then a river, and then beyond and below that mountains. And beyond and above that, lightning.

In this way I saw lightning’s Fire passing down through Air and Clouds, to touch Earth and Water below.

And as I huffed and puffed my way through the form this morning (developing a new definition of “perfunctory” in the process), I kept that image in mind, of the elemental structure of South America: the earth as the ground, the rivers flowing over it to the sea and the sea evaporating to perform cloud hands over the continent, the wind moving the clouds, and the lightning discharging fire from heaven to earth.

Archons come and go: The one thing, the one mind, the three-fold world, abide.

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