<< Previous : The Argonauts in the Hesperides garden
Having followed his directions the heroes skirted Crete where the giant Talos attacked them with stones. Zeus had offered him to Europa after being united with her. He went around Crete three times a day to prevent foreigners from entering and as his body was made of bronze some add that he made himself white-hot and then took foreigners into his arms to make them perish. A single vein containing Ichor travelled across his body from his neck to his ankles.
While the heroes were about to turn back, the giant became the victim of Medea’s sorcery, ruptured the vein at his ankle against a rock and died. In another version, Medea removed the bronze nail blocking the end of the vein.
The Argonauts are then confronted with Talos “he who supports, who endures.” According to some he was a survivor of the brazen race born from ashes, i.e. an afterglow of the first period of the quest in which the seeker pursued the Absolute at the peak of the emotional vital.
He was a bronze giant (a powerful protection, unalterable but not indestructible), one of the gifts given by Zeus to Europa after the birth of their two sons Minos and Rhadamanthys. It is a gift from the higher planes (Zeus), given to the beginner initiating the process of the opening of consciousness and of mastery (Europa) manifested as an ability to isolate oneself by protecting oneself from the outside in a somewhat “rigid” manner. This protection is however led by a right movement: Talos in fact has a single vein in which runs Ichor, the blood of the gods, a symbol of the “right movement originating from a gathered consciousness ΙΧ+P or a higher Will.
This gift therefore gives the seeker a certain ability of rigid isolation enabling him to exclude external interferences (foreigners) by burning them in the fire of his inflamed will. (Other authors speak of Talos not as a bronze giant but as a bull, the “power of realisation of the luminous mind” of the early stages which was in itself protective.)
If the novice seeker did not have this protection he would be very soon destroyed by the powers that oppose changes in the invisible planes.
When the seeker engages himself in his task (in the union of Jason and Medea) this primarily physical protection is withdrawn from him. Medea, the “intention” of the soul, then removes the nail from the ankle of Talos thus taking away the “rigid” power which supports this protection (the ichor which then escapes from the dying structure).