The Cry of the 17th Aethyr, Which is Called TAN
Into the stone there first cometh the head of a dragon, and then the Angel Madimi**2**. She is not the mere elemental that one would suppose from the account of Casaubon. I enquire why her form is different.
She says: Since all things are God, in all things thou seest just so much of God as thy capacity affordeth thee**3**. But behold! Thou must pierce deeply into this Aethyr before true images appear**4**. For TAN is that which transformeth judgment into justice**5**. BAL is the sword, and TAN the balances**6**.
A pair of balances appears in the stone, and on the bar of the balance is written: Motion about a point is iniquity**7**.
And behind the balances is a plume, luminous, azure**8**. And somehow connected with the plume, but I cannot divine how, are these words: Breath is iniquity**9**. (That is, any wind must stir the feather of truth.)
And behind the plume is a shining filament of quartz, suspended vertically from the abyss to the abyss**10**. And in the midst is a winged disk**11** of some extremely delicate, translucent substance, on which is written in the “dagger” alphabet: Torsion is iniquity**12**. (This means, that the Rashith Ha-Gilgalim is the first appearance of evil.**13**)
And now an Angel appears, like as he were carven in black diamonds. And he cries: Woe unto the Second, whom all nations of men call the First**14**. Woe unto the First, whom all grades of Adepts call the First**15**. Woe unto me, for I, even as they, have worshipped him. But she is whose paps are the galaxies**16**, and he that never shall be known**17**, in them is no motion. For the infinite Without filleth all and moveth not**18**, and the infinite Within goeth indeed**19**; but it is no odds, else were the space-marks confounded**20**.
And now the Angel is but a shining speck of blackness in the midst of a tremendous sphere of liquid and vibrating light, at first gold, then becoming green, and lastly pure blue**21**. And I see that the green of Libra is made up of the yellow of air and the blue of water, swords and cups, judgment and mercy**22**. And this word TAN meaneth mercy**23**. And the feather of Maat is blue because the truth of justice is mercy**24**. And a voice cometh, as it were the music of the ripples of the surface of the sphere: Truth is delight **25**. (This means that the Truth of the universe is delight.)
Another voice cometh; it is the voice of a mighty Angel, all in silver; the scales of his armour and the plumes of his wings are like mother-of-pearl in a framework of silver**26**. And he sayeth: Justice is the equity that ye have made for yourselves between truth and falsehood. But in Truth there is nothing of this, for there is only Truth. Your falsehood is but a little falser than your truth**27**. Yet by your truth shall ye come to Truth. Your truth is your troth with Adonai the Beloved one**28**. And the Chymical Marriage of the Alchemists beginneth with a Weighing, and he that is not found wanting hath within him one spark of fire, so dense and so intense that it cannot be moved, through all the winds of heaven should clamour against it, and all the waters of the abyss surge against it, and all the multitude of the earths heap themselves upon it to smother it. Nay, it shall not be moved**29**.
And this is the fire of which it is written: “Hear thou the voice of fire!” And the voice of fire is in the second chapter of The Book of the Law**30**, that is revealed unto him that is a score and half a score and three that are scores, and six, by Aiwass, that is his guardian, the mighty Angel that extendeth from the first unto the last, and maketh known the mysteries that are beyond. And the method and the form of invocation whereby a man shall attain to the knowledge and conversation of his Holy Guardian Angel shall be given unto thee in the proper place**31**, and seeing that the word is deadlier than lightning, do thou meditate straitly thereupon, solitary, in a place where is no living thing visible, but only the light of the sun. And thy head shall be bare**32**. Thus mayest thou become fitted to receive this, the holiest of the Mysteries. And it is the holiest of the Mysteries because it is the Next Step. And those Mysteries which lie beyond, though they be holier, are not holy unto thee, but only remote. (The sense of this passage seems to be, that the holiness of a thing implies its personal relation with one, just as one cannot blaspheme an unknown god, because one does not know what to say to annoy him. And this explains the perfect inefficiency of those who try to insult the saints; the most violent attacks are very often merely clumsy compliments.)
Now the Angel is spread completely over the globe, a dewy film of silver upon that luminous blue.
And a great voice cries: Behold the Queen of Heaven, how she hath woven her robes from the loom of justice**33**. For as that straight path of the Arrow cleaving the Rainbow became righteousness in her that sitteth in the hall of double truth**34**, so at last is she exalted unto the throne of the High Priestess, the Priestess of the Silver Star, wherein also is thine Angel made manifest**35**. And this is the mystery of the camel that is ten days in the desert, and is not athirst, because he hath within him that water which is the dew distilled from the the night of Nuit**36**. Triple is the cord of silver, that it may be not loosed; and three score and half a score and three is the number of the name of my name**37**, for that the ineffable wisdom, that also is of the sphere of the stars, informeth me**38**. Thus am I crowned with the triangle that is about the eye, and therefore is my number three**39**. And in me there is no imperfection, because through me descendeth the influence of TARO**40**. And that is also the number of Aiwass the mighty Angel, the Minister of Silence.
And even as the shew-stone burneth thy forehead with its intolerable flame, so he who hath known me, though but from afar, is marked out and chosen among men, and he shall never turn back or turn aside, for he hath made the link that is not to be broken, nay, not by the malice of the Four Great Princes of evil of the world, nor by Chorozon, that mighty Devil, nor by the wrath of God, nor by the affliction and feebleness of the soul.
Yet with this assurance be not thou content; for though thou hast the wings of the Eagle, they are vain, except they be joined to the shoulders of the Bull. Now, therefore, I send forth a shaft of my light, even as a ladder let down from the heaven upon the earth, and by this black cross of Themis that I hold before thine eyes, do I swear unto thee that the path shall be open henceforth for evermore.
There is a clash of a myriad silver cymbals, and silence. And then three times a note is struck upon a bell, which sounds like my holy Tibetan bell, that is made of electrum magicum**41**.
I am happily returned unto the earth.
December 2, 1909. 12:15 - 2 a.m.