cosmic serpent

The Cosmic Serpent

This adventure in science and imagination, which the Medical Tribune said might herald “a Copernican revolution for the life sciences,” leads the reader through unexplored jungles and uncharted aspects of mind to the heart of knowledge.In a first-person narrative of scientific discovery that opens new perspectives on biology, anthropology, and the limits of rationalism, The Cosmic Serpent reveals how startlingly different the world around us appears when we open our minds to it.


“In Qabalistic and Tantric traditions, the serpent winds around the central axis, the serpent of wisdom or Kundalini. Often depicted as two opposing serpents, it is necessary to awaken and balance this energy as it winds through the active and passive channels of the spine or the active and passive pillars of the Tree of Life. By activating the central axis, the Crown may be reached, which is timelessness, immortality and union with the Divine.” Illustration to Raymond Lull’s Opera Chemica, 15th century, from The Mystic Spiral, Journey of the Soul by Jill Purce

When we see this worldwide occurrence of the Goddess and her Serpent, and then recall the ancient African Black Goddess, the Black Witch, imaged with the snake in her belly–we can see the profound power as well as universality of this cosmological symbol, it’s range of endurance in the human mind. And we begin to see why the upstart patriarchal religions based themselves on the utter destruction of the goddess/serpent, pictured by the Babylonians as “primeval chaos”–an image picked up later by the Hebrews and used in biblical Genesis, where Eve linked with her serpent become the symbols of ontological evil. […]

The Hebrew patriarchs tried to destroy the world’s original, most widespread, and enduring religion by branding it as “evil,” and by portraying the Mother Goddess and her magic snake-lover as the source, not of all life, but of “all wickedness”–hated and condemned by their new tribal god Yahweh. To the degree that they were historically successful in this attempt, Western biblicized peoples have lost their original concept, and memory, of what the Goddess and her Serpent really meant–to all people, and all time.


The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of Earth by Barbara Mor and Monica Sjöö

This is why it’s so important that we are reclaiming dragons and the serpent/female narrative. It’s almost as if our ancient memory is starting to return and we are reclaiming what used to be ours.

The serpent is not my captor or tormentor, it is my friend and ally. Together, we created the world.

Visionary Art by John Gay

“Shamanism resembles an academic discipline (such as anthropology or molecular biology); with its practitioners, fundamental researchers, specialists, and schools of thought it is a way of apprehending the world that evolves constantly. One thing is certain: Both indigenous and mestizo shamans consider people like the Shipibo-Conibo, the Tukano, the Kamsá, and the Huitoto as the equivalents to universities such as Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and the Sorbonne; they are the highest reference in matters of knowledge. In this sense, ayahuasca-based shamanism is an essentially indigenous phenomenon. It belongs to the indigenous people of Western Amizonia, who hold the keys to a way of knowing that they have practiced without interruption for at least five thousand years. In comparison, the universities of the Western world are less than nine hundred years old.”
Jeremy Narby, The Cosmic Serpent: DNA and the Origins of Knowledge

The First Witch & the Birth of the Devil

I suppose you could call it a sort of vision – a cinematic work of the hypnagogic mind – that I have thus recorded in verse. 

Black earth shifts – ashen phantoms
Rise from obsidian soil, volcanic and crystalline
A great salt sea foams at earth’s edge
Frozen in chemical coitus,
And the heavens blaze over-head – crimson
A bloody sky dotted with flint and rock-hewn daggers
She walks – bare of flesh and clear of mind
Upon the unforgiving glass and atop the mirror
Surface of the steady sea;
Pale skin blinding
Painted with onyx hair and wild eyes
She turns:
Casting a black shadow
That is born from her anew
Sharpened nails pluck gently at her own reflection
And from the water – fresh –
She draws the silhouette birthed
It wails not – but hums
As its simple visage of obstructed light
Vibrates into form at but the motion
Of her ghostly hand –
Into her ear it whispers –
And unravels into the sky,
Black ribbons eclipsing the boiling atmos
And so she remains – reclining now on
Naked soil, watched by those who Watch
Three tall figured, obscured –
Draped in the fabric of time
Around her leaps the sparks of power
Altered in their form to bleed flame
The fire twists in to a ring and arcs around her being
She is standing – though no air displaced
And they Watch
The ribbons of the sky buckle,
But behind, the star-clad sky,
And the shrinking form of her creation
Takes shape there at her side,
The Black One comes, lit by witches’ flame
Her shadow born to shape – to space,
She molds him thusly in darkness,
And placed the moon to light her sight,
She gives her shape more substance,
But yet – he is lacking – and so she whispers sweetly
And smiles; as they who Watch are torn asunder
In their robes her Shadow wrapped –
But yet – he is lacking;
And so she gives him great horns
So that they might shoulder her own knowledge
Which she bestows unto him sweetly
In the act of a symphony –
And she leaves him – great of form,
To heft the Witch’s Knowledge,
Adorned with a crown of horns
By which he rules the legions born
From her mind and painted thusly
Upon the canvas of space;
But the Heaven’s called gently –
And her cosmic lover came hence,
Serpents black and white,
The lady-lovers coiled tight until naught remained, but –
Silence and the Devil –
Within the Witch’s Flame.