The Heart of the Black Madonna

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Healing Nature of Darkness

In the Northern Hemisphere, the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting longer. The stores are filled with Autumn Holiday merchandise, much of it scary for the end of October. Our modern culture teaches us to be afraid of darkness, but I have always found it peaceful. I had the pleasure of attending a very interesting event last night in Pasadena. As I had been busy with Church services and such for Michaelmas, I was a bit tired and the thought of going to an outdoor evening event on a Monday night seemed a bit much, but there was something in me that said "go" even though all my friends declined my cheerful invitation to accompany me on the evening of Michaelmas, 2014.

As usual, my Angel encourages me to do amazing things, I am learning to trust her inspirations even when I am not feeling up to the challenge. I learned after I arrived at the Pasadena Carnegie Observatories, 5 minutes before the performance of "Hand in Hand at the Edge of the Sky," getting the LAST parking space, that this is the location where Dark Matter was discovered in 1951. At the observatory on Mt Wilson near Pasadena, Astronomer Vera Rubin was trying to understand how the Universe was revolving. She noticed it was expanding, and her explanation was the concept of Dark Matter. 

The lecture at the evening performance was all about Dark Matter and Dark Energy, which is quite the topic of discussion and research among today's Astrophysicists. The evening proceeded with truly beautiful pictures of deep space, dark matter and hoards of galaxies that are now visible because of the telescopes that have been developed by the pioneering work at the Carnegie Observatories.

So here I was, lying on my beach towel, enjoying strawberries and sugar cookies, watching both the slide show and the glorious stars and crescent moon above, right there where over 60 years ago Dark Matter was "discovered." After the talk from Astrophysicists Andrew Benson and Juna Kollimeier, an incredible music selection was performed. 

Hand in Hand at the Edge of the Sky, written by Matthew Brown was specifically inspired by the Mountain Night Sky where Vera Rubin had her original discoveries. Mt Wilson provides stunning vistas of the Cosmos, and the music matched the magic. 

I am including an excerpt from the soon to be released book The Black Madonna Journey of the Human Heart, by me, Stephanie Georgieff. I hope you enjoy, and that you are inspired to look to the night sky to see the harmony and beauty that was made for our amazement. Darkness is to be celebrated, not feared, for it is the substance of most of this magnificent Universe we call home. The Black Madonna's are reminding us from where we have come, and to where we will go. 

I hope you will come to see Darkness as healing, and containing hidden treasures. If you can look at the pictures of the Galaxies, you will see that the words from Isaiah are so very true. Enjoy the chapter, and stay tuned for more segments and podcasts where I will be reading from the book.

Our continuing space explorations and reports returning to us from the Hubbell telescope have also shattered our materialistic concepts of the universe.  While much science has focused on the nature of light, living within the ecology of our universe of polarities, a new conceptualization of “dark” began to emerge.

Steiner spoke of universal principles throughout his voluminous lectures and writings. He invited us to conceptualize physical matter as an expression and manifestation of the Spiritual World. In other words, he asked us to focus on the invisible forces behind matter, or what is behind the physical world. In other words, the spirit behind and manifested in the material world. It is a beautiful consideration to ponder that what led Steiner to his revelations and formation of Anthroposophy were his studies and cataloguing of Goethe’s scientific writings, specifically the treatises on the theory of Color.

It is my belief that in an act of divine grace and providence, the spiritual world inspired the creation of the Black Madonna’s to BE Black specifically to counteract the effects of materialistic orientation towards life and the disastrous effects it has had on the planet and her creatures.

The Cosmic Nature of Black

Steiner taught that for everything there is a balancing effect. We see this within his Christology, through understanding the balancing effects between the Christ, Lucifer and Ahriman. (Appendix 5) Steiner also spoke of the balancing force to gravity as being levity. It is astounding to note that only until recently has materialistic science started to appreciate the phenomena throughout the existence of “dark matter.” Nigel Smith and Neil Spooner through “The Search for Dark Matter” in a 2000 issue of Physics World (24) reported, “Astronomers were …surprised and disturbed to learn in the 1930’s that our own Milky Way galaxy behaved as if it contained more matter than could be seen with telescopes. This puzzling non-luminous matter became known as ‘dark matter.’ “ Particularly challenging to the materialistic astronomers in the 30’s was that the universe was constantly expanding at an increasing speed, and yet there was not an obliteration or spinning out of control of creation. In fact, the universe and all of her inhabitants keep expanding uniformly. The key to comprehending this phenomena of every expanding universe is to visualize the baking of raisin bread, the planets and stars as raisins, and the dough as the dark matter space in-between.

Astronomer Vera Rubin in 1951 noticed that while galaxies rotate, the outer edges of galaxies traveled as fast in the center as they did on the outer edges. What was of particular interest was that the galaxies did not fall apart during all of this motion. The glue holding all of the inhabitants of these galaxies together was termed dark matter. Through the evolution of String Theory, (Appendix 6) the understanding of light as well as dark matter is to conceptualize the dark matter stretching to hold onto stars and galaxies as they travel throughout the universe.  It is interesting to note that Steiner, in his attempts to define light, said that it bends and circles back and does not travel indefinitely in a straight line. (25)

Throughout our explorations of the galaxies and the quest to understand our origins, the phenomenon of “Black Holes” has emerged. These entities supposedly range from the size of a thumbnail to the center of the Milky Way that is four million times bigger that our sun (26) Black Holes seem to be located in the center of their respective universes or galaxies. NASA’s Wide Field Infrared Survey telescope has recently received scanned images of the entire sky over a period between 2009 through 2011. Apparently there is a “bonanza of black holes in the universe,” according to astronomer Daniel Stern from NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

It is thought that Black Holes are collections of the densest material imaginable, the ultimate nothing, some even label the holes collections of “anti-gravity.” These black holes are the result of collapsed stars and cosmic communities. While considered dense lifeless remnants of dead stars, black hoes emit atoms needed for the creation of new life. Scientists now believe our own Milky Way may have burst forth from a black hole. Pictures from the Hubble Telescope illustrate that black holes connect darkness to the light. Due to the depletion of hydrogen and other gasses, they become white hot. It is also thought that through black holes; there lies a connection to parallel universes, as a conduit to other realities. Another way to look at this phenomenon and associated theories, is out of the death of universes, black holes connect and birth new life.

Spiritual Understanding of Black

Sr. Madeleva, resident artist for the Sisters of St. Joseph’s of Orange, California teaches that Black is the color of the feminine. It is considered a generative color throughout all cultural artistic manifestations. In her own creations, she enjoys employing Black. When asked why, Sr. Madeleva says that, “Black makes the colors jump out.”

Steiner revisited ancient knowledge when he explained the evolution of the planet. He states that the Third Hierarchy comprised of the Archai, Archangels and Angels are the mediators between light and darkness. This activity brought about the admixture through which colors could arise. Within classical Greek Cosmology, which influenced Alchemy, Black is the color of condensation, representing the Earth. As Earth is implicit in all life processes, it is a constant. In all representations of color, Black is present in one degree or another.

Steiner invites us to think of light as ensouled, and realize the habit of seeing light as merely vibrations emanating from the sun. The Sun, as described by Steiner in Man, Hieroglyph of the Universe, (28) has a sucking action that annihilates, and in that process generates light, not warmth. Its opposite, darkness, he teaches, is filled with warmth. Light is permeated by soul and spirit.

Consider our previous discussion on the Council of Constantinople of 869, where the official dogma of the Church was that humans had no spirit, only a body and a soul. According to Steiner’s theory of Color, Light involves Human and Cosmic thought, Color reflects Human and Cosmic Feeling, and Darkness reflects Human and Cosmic willing. Color is thought to reflect the Soul, while Darkness and Light reflect the Spirit. (29) I think it is no accident that the Black Madonna’s started to appear in mass after the Council of 869, in all their Black Beauty to be a symbol of how darkness, Blackness was a reflection of the human spirit, of the spiritual nature of the Cosmos.

Goethe observed that color is perceptible only as a result of the interweaving of the two polarities of light and darkness. Too much of either end of the spectrum makes the visibility of color imperceptible. At the heart of Goethe’s theory of color was the mystery of light and darkness opposing one another as two real polar entities. When considering the deepest aspect of the cosmos, space and dark matter, there are actually only degrees of darkness. Steiner states that this dark content of space is filled with soul and spiritual beings, something similar to what the beginning words of the Bible speak of as “darkness weaving over the face of the deep.” Genesis 1:2 The miracle of balance illustrated by these phenomena is that there is no stability in cosmic activity unless the force of darkness is everywhere interwoven with the force of light. Steiner states that it is the hindrance of both light and darkness that allows colors to manifest. From this we can deduce that the challenge of the soul is influenced by the light of thinking spirit and the darkness of the will in matter, which will be lifted into the realm of true knowing. By interweaving these two states, we too can manifest spirit into matter.

Blessings on your journey!

To see amazing pictures of Galaxies, which are the treasures in the heavens, you can click on the link below: 

And if you are ever in Pasadena, you should stop by the Carnegie Observatories.