Myth Becomes Reality

The next day I am on a flight to Dubai to visit my friends Chris and Caroline. We are joined by Andy, who has flown in from Hong Kong. What I don’t realise until I arrive is that, eschewing the high-rise glitz of the city, Chris and Caroline are living out in the backwaters: the one place in Dubai where the camel pens are located.

The ships of the desert are becoming something of a theme.

While in Dubai another insight comes to light. The details are a little convoluted and esoteric but briefly it involves camels, the Darren Aronofsky film The Fountain and two symbols converging to become one.


While a detailed appraisal of the insight is beyond the scope of this narrative, the basics are outlined here.

It begins with two symbols arising in connection to the Ilkley research. Both cropped up in ways that are deeply relevant to the unfolding drama. As I leave Ilkley for Dubai, the symbols are whispering at the edges of my awareness, carrying the suggestion that there is more to learn from them.

The first is something I call the warrior-settler-nomad triangle, a trinity of archetypes at the heart of the Darren Aronofsky film The Fountain.

In the film, the main character appears in 3 incarnations:

  • Spanish conquistador - warrior
  • present day scientist - settler
  • future astronaut - nomad

The second symbol is a Kabbalistic Cross.

I have a sense that the two symbols are connected, but don’t know how.

The morning of the desert trip, I’m chatting with Chris about the history of Dubai, when he mentions that the country’s first inhabitants were nomads. The vision of a camel train flares in my mind, connecting the nomad with the symbol of the Thirteenth Path.

Suddenly it falls into place. The warrior-settler-nomad triangle merges with the Kabbalistic cross to create a single glyph, a stylised bow and arrow.

The warrior is well-suited to the fifth sphere, Geburah, whose magical image is a warrior king riding into battle.

The settler matches the fourth sphere, Chesed, whose magical image is an enthroned king ruling over a time of peace.

The nomad fits with Daath, the hidden sphere that speaks of a journey into the unknown.

Two symbols become one. Convergence.

The insight into the nature of the Thirteenth Path occurs an hour or so before Chris, Andy and I are due to set off on a camping expedition into the desert. As we arrive at our destination, pulling off the road and heading into the dunes, I reflect on how fitting it is that on the very same day of having an insight about it, here I am taking my very own real-world journey into the Thirteenth Path.

I take a few shots of the camels we meet on our way.

Dusk is falling by the time we pitch camp. While catching some snaps of the setting sun I notice in the east the most remarkable cloud formation.

It is a huge cumulonimbus standing alone over a low mountain range. The peak of this great mountain of cloud is gleaming brilliant white with the reflected sunlight and is surmounted by a swathe of cirrus, creating what looks like a crown. It is an extraordinary sight. Chris, Andy and I take a few more photos and get the barbecue on the go as night falls.

In the darkness the cloud becomes lit from within by a spectacular lightning storm. Brooding and magnificent, it provides a wonderful light show to accompany our barbeque. I enjoy a great time with old friends and spend the night sleeping outside beneath the moon and stars.

I have a sense the cloud has great power and significance, but it is not until returning home that I realize just how incredible it is. Continuing the research into the Tree of Life, it is while reading about the colours of the spheres that the penny drops. The orientation of the Tree is such that if a traveller were standing on the Thirteenth Path, the sphere of Tiphareth would be in the west, its colours those of the sun at dusk: pink, yellow, salmon and amber. In the spot where the traveller is standing would be a desert and camels. In the east would be Kether, coloured brilliant white like the glow caught in the summit of the cloud formation we saw.

In the west -
colours of the setting sun
In the middle -
desert and camel
In the east -
brilliant white

There is more to it than this. On the Tree of Life, Kether is surmounted by three arcs, known as The Three Cloud Veils. I reach for my photos and pull out the close-up of the cloud. Above the glow of brilliant white can be seen three swathes of cirrus: three distinct cloud veils.

What I witnessed that night was one of the most incredible events of my life. A manifestation of the Thirteenth Path in physical reality.


Comic Book Coincidence

Fast forward eight months – to when I finally get around to taking the three Dubai photographs in to be framed.

The same week, I order a series of comic books I keep hearing about: The Invisibles. The comics arrive and by the time the framed triptych is ready collect and hang on my wall, I am up to the third book in the series.

I am nearing the end of the book when a single panel leaps out at me. It is unusual in that it doesn’t seem to follow the thread of the story and there are no further references to it in the remainder of the book. The picture consists of one of the characters looking at a photograph – a photograph that bears a remarkable resemblance to the third of the triptych now hanging on my wall.