The Genesis in Greek myths related by Hesiod include for two different lineages starting respectively with Chaos and Gaia. It begins as follows:
“Verily at the first Chaos came to be, but next wide-bosomed Earth, the ever-sure foundations of all the deathless ones who hold the peaks of snowy Olympus, and dim Tartarus in the depth of the wide-pathed Earth, and Eros, fairest among the deathless gods, who unnerves the limbs and overcomes the mind and wise counsels of all gods and all men within them.” (Hesiod. Theogony, trans H.G. Evelyn-White, verse 116)
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Chaos is the first element to appear in Hesiod’s version of the tale. Usually this word is used in the sense of a void assimilated into a general disorder – the tohu-bohu of Genesis in the Bible, a world “empty and vague”. But in this case there is no connotation of disorder or confusion: if there is a sense of emptiness, it is that of a void potentially containing everything.
The character structuring this word, “Khi”(Χ), expresses the concept of the point in which is contained everything, the One concentrated into Himself, the Absolute, the Tao, the Void, etc., which is far beyond our present capacity of comprehension.
According to Hesiod however, human consciousness is capable of reaching this point only in temporary flashes when it is elevated to the highest planes of the mind, for he tells us that Zeus can bring to it his lightning.
This absolute found outside the realm of time, space and even manifestation is the kingdom of the infinite and the eternal. Therefore the concepts of dawning or manifestation are used only in a symbolic sense here. There is no need for inception, and the four primary divine entities coexist eternally.
Then, with the presence of Gaia, Chaos becomes the Consciousness- Force and Gaia (or Ge) becomes its movement of externalisation which will later on become the principle of Existence and Becoming and in the denser planes the personification of Earth and Matter.
The characters which form the word Gaia (Γ+Ι) express a consciousness which leaps from the highest level. This is only a representational distinction, for at this stage we cannot truly differentiate into levels. As a foundation of Existence, Gaia is at the origin of the principles of manifestation which in turn will direct creation.
Simultaneous with the emergence of Gaia appears the mist-enveloped Tartarus, the principle of non-existence (Non-Being) and non-consciousness which seems akin to Sri Aurobindo’s concept of Nescience. In direct opposition to Gaia, this is what permits the Absolute to “forget itself”, to carry out the supreme divine sacrifice. But at this stage nothing is yet compartmentalised as all is One. We can read this in the character structure of the name “Tartarus” assembled in the classical form x+Ρx, here Τ+ΡΤ+Ρ “Consciousness + reversal (negation) of consciousness + according to the divine plan.” It is a region which Hesiod describes as being “as distant from the earth as the earth is distant from the sky, for it would take nine days and nine nights for the bronze anvil descending from the sky to reach the earth on the tenth night, and it would take it as long to descend from the Earth to Tartarus.” (Theogony 744) ”
The duration of the fall of the anvil reveals the necessity for a manifestation to have a full period of gestation.
Tartarus can be understood as a passive resistance, a power which opposes itself permanently to the pressure of the Absolute and to its incoercible attraction to Existence in Becoming.
According to Hesiod, this union with Gaia will engender Typhon, a symbol of ignorance which manifests itself in the densest planes by “filling with smoke, blinding and generating the first mental storms”.
In the Homeric hymn to Apollo it is Hera who created Typhon to avenge herself on the birth of Athena whom Zeus brought to life alone: the power of limitation (Hera) was thus utilizing ignorance (Typhon) to thwart the force of evolutionary expansion (Zeus) which had generated the impulse for inner growth (Athena).
When Zeus vanquished Typhon and human consciousness progressed beyond the animal stage, ignorance remained active through the intermediary of the children of Typhon, the great monsters Cerberus, “the guardian of Death”, the Lernaean Hydra, “Desire”, the Chimera, “Illusion” and the dog Orthros, “Untruth”.
Finally appeared Eros, Joy or Divine Delight (Ananda in the Indian tradition), the third term of the indivisible trinity and the expression of the relationship between the Consciousness-Force and its power of execution.
He governs intelligence and the right desire in the depths of the hearts of men and gods alike: as a supreme expression of Love simultaneously transcending and acting from within he supports and leads intelligence and the Wisdom-Will of the soul or the psychic being rather than that of the ego. In Questions and Answers of 9-01-1957, the Mother makes the following statement: “All those who have had the inner experience have had this experience, that the moment one re-establishes the union with the divine source, all suffering disappears. But there has been a very persistent movement, about which I spoke to you last week, which put at the source of creation not this essential divine Delight but desire. This delight of creation, self-manifestation, self-expression – there is an entire line of seekers and sages who have considered it not as a delight but as a desire; the whole line of Buddhism is of this kind. And instead of seeing the solution in a Oneness which restores to us the essential Delight of the manifestation and the becoming, they consider that the goal and also the way are a total rejection of all desire to be and a return to annihilation.”
The name Eros is built around the syllable Rho which, let us remember, symbolises the true or just movement according to the Absolute’s plan. In Mother’s Agenda, (Volume 6, p.57), The Mother explains that “perfection is to have a movement of transformation or unfolding identical to the divine Movement, the essential Movement. Whereas all that belongs to the unconscious or tamasic creation tries to keep its existence unchanged, instead of lasting by constant transformation.” Delight or Ananda is thus the result of a tuning of the movement of transformation to the divine movement or divine Game.
So is described in poetic form the trilogy of Existence-Consciousness-Bliss, the highest manifestation of the Supreme Reality accessible to human consciousness. By placing within a single generation the Absolute (Chaos), and then Being and Non-Being (Gaia and Tartarus) Hesiod directly avoids many philosophical disputes on the subject.
THE CHILDREN OF CHAOS
Following this first account, Hesiod expands on his description of the line of descent of the children of Chaos or “principles of manifestation”, or more precisely on the force of their emergence outside creation and space-time, for nothing can be set in motion while the principles of manifestation are not established. The narration of Genesis takes up this same structure in the Elohist and Yahwist creation myths, which seem to succeed one another anachronistically. The explanation for this could be found in a discussion of the structure of the planes of consciousness in the first section of Genesis, and in the second section, the description of human evolution at the point in which it enters into the phases of alternation in the mind. It seems that in Hesiod’s work, the descent of Chaos reveals metaphysical concepts rather than actual experiences. That is why Homer, who always remained in a very concrete realm and did not show much interest for metaphysical ideas, placed the couple Oceanus and Tethys – which include for the currents of energy-consciousness – as the foundation of universe.
The first two entities to be brought forward are Erebus, “darkness”, and Nyx, “night”, the latter expressing the supreme sacrifice of the Divine in Becoming, His descent into the darkness of the progressive densification.
Erebus (Ρ+Β) signifies “a condensation/densification (Β) developing in accordance with the right Divine movement (Ρ) “, and night (Nyx Ν+Ξ) expressed by “the identity between what is above and what is below (Ξ), the same movement in the realm of Becoming (Ν) “. We come across these two formulations again in the opening lines of the Emerald Tablet, a key text in the Hermetic and alchemical traditions:
“That which is below is like that which is above
and that which is above is like that which is below
to do the miracles of one only thing”
(Let us note that Darkness is the active aspect of the movement, while Night is the receptive one).
From their union two principles emerge: Aether (Ether), “the pure clarity of consciousness, the superior region of air”, and its opposite Erebus,” darkness”, and its counterpart in the realm of Becoming, Hemera, “the day” and its opposite, Night.
Between Aether and Hemera there is the same relationship of condensation and densification as there is between Erebus and Night. Aether (ΙΘ+Ρ) is an indication of the manner in which the movement of manifestation is carried out, an impulse of consciousness from within (ΙΘ), the place of its involution. (Note that it is usual to make a distinction between “manifestation” and “creation”. It is not the One but rather the first forces to emerge or be manifested which generate the forces of creation.) Hemera, “the day” (Μ+Ρ) translates into a condensation or densification of Aether, an active and perfect receptivity which develops according to the true movement. This state must progressively generate an awakened consciousness, “day”, as opposed to the inconscient, “night”.
It is from the night of manifestation (Nyx) and not from Divine darkness (Erebus) that emerged the terrifying monsters. What in the highest planes appears as a condensation, and becomes in the Realm of Becoming the night of the inconscient, also generates a powerful aspiration of matter for Spirit and of Spirit for Matter.
At the beginning of manifestation, “Night” personifies a total absence of consciousness, a forgetting of the origin. The children of Night are expressions of forces which work from “behind the veil” without our knowledge and whose motives are hidden to us. Although apparently opposed to the divine order, they are integrally part of its play.
The children of Night
Hesiod seems to have divided these into four groups.
The first one includes states in which we have little or no consciousness, or which have a meaning that is hidden to us: destiny (Moros), black death (Ker), death (Thanatos), sleep (Hypnos) and dreams (Oneiros).
In the name Moros, meaning “the lot assigned by destiny”, we find the same character structure as in the name Hemera. It is still the idea of a progression of consciousness through a mysterious destiny which we have no choice but to submit to.
Ker (Κ+Ρ),” death as the ultimate destiny”, designates the end of the experience chosen by the soul in a given body, while Thanatos, “personified death”, is more representative of the physical death which leads to another state of being. The first is a passive feminine process while the second is an active masculine one.
Hypnos, or “sleep”, is closely related to Thanatos, for he also personifies a process of integration as suggested by the character structure of the name. Hesiod affirms that “The glowing Sun never looks upon them with his beams, neither as he goes up into heaven, nor as he comes down from heaven ” (Hesiod. Theogony, trans. Evelyn-White, verse 758): we are thus dealing with the deep subconscious and inconscient states which have never been illuminated by the light of the supramental.
In the Iliad (Iliad XIV, 230), Hera, in exchange for casting the spell of sleep over Zeus, promised Hypnos a bride who he had long desired: the youngest of the Graces, Pasithea (total vision, awakening). Thus if the seeker accepts to enter into “the right movement originating from the Absolute” (Hera) and works to bring complete peace to the active element of his mental consciousness with the aim of achieving mental silence, he can truly become an “awakened one”. Zeus, “the highest mental consciousness in evolution, the supraconscient”, can in fact never be “asleep” or “inconscient” but rather “asleep with open eyes” and in complete vigilance, as is illustrated in the myth of Endymion. He can only submit his activity to the right movement.
Dreams, or Oneiros, describes experiences at the limits of waking consciousness which must be deciphered to serve evolution. According to Homer they emerge every night from the darkness of their home situated on the occidental borders of Oceanos, in Erebus within the realm of corporeal memory. In the Iliad at the beginning of the second verse, we see an example of a false dream solicited by Zeus, and we must conclude that at least two types of dreams exist, relating either to truth or to falsity. A perfected sense of discernment must therefore preside over the interpretation of dreams.
The second group seems to define very archaic movements within consciousness which give th