During our October-Michaelmas gospel readings we hear about the dragon – the ancient serpent, who has been cast down to the Earth. But who amongst us has actually seen a dragon? What is the real nature of this mighty sign given in the Book of Revelation? All the light of the heavens is connected with the other aspect of the sign – the woman clothed with the sun, the moon under her feet, and her head adorned with the crown of twelve stars. The dragon is the sign of darkness and the powers that adhere to darkness. They prefer to remain obscured so that their work can go undetected. They have the capacity to appear as other than what they really are. They deceive and they tempt. We do not easily see the dragon.
But darkness and deception have a task, and that task is now being unfolded on the Earth in the midst of human beings. Only in having to face deception can we strengthen our capacity to discern and know the truth. We win this capacity through awakening the powers of the heart. Head-thinking can be led astray. Heart-thinking has the strength of courage. It is pulsed-through with the power of the true-I. It can connect with the cosmic intelligence wielded through the domain of the Archangel Michael. Standing up to deception we discover the truth. (And there is plenty of deception in the world to be standing up to!)
At night we can go outside and look up into a cloudless sky and we will see the lights of heaven as expressed through the stars. If our vantage point is in a city or suburban area then our view will be compromised because of the amount of ambient light. But if we are far from the city and suburban lights – far out in the countryside, the desert, or the mountains, – then, surrounded by darkness, we can look up and behold the most incredible vista filled in every direction by the heavenly lights. We will see the greater and lesser lights along with veils of transparent light. Everything will appear clear and bright and sharp. And that is what darkness does. It lets the light be truly seen.
There is soul work to be done in our times. If there is darkening upon the Earth, then there will be a darkening within us. The woman clothed with the sun is confined within a desert – a bare and arid place. Through soul darkness we can begin to see light that was not possible to see before. We can begin to know things that we had not known before. We can begin to do things that we had no strength or understanding for before. The soul can begin to bear a new life, a new fructifying, a sprouting of new seed-creations. And there, emerging out of our darkness, we may see a new garden of possibilities – like a desert transformed. The sign of the woman may appear in a new way – as the embodiment of truth, beauty and goodness, from within the human being – from out of the confrontation with darkness.