Thursday, February 16, 2012

Angelics Part 2

So, where was I? Ah yes – angels.

Who are the big names and what are they usually associated with? If you pick up an angel dictionary or a book on Angelology, they’re cram packed with hundreds of ‘angel names’ and what they do. It’s interesting to see that many (though not all) angel names end in ‘-el’ – why is that? 

El is one of the names of God. I could say it’s Hebrew but there are those who could argue it stems from a proto-Hebraic language or even the language of the angels themselves that humanity spoke before the Tower of Babel was destroyed and the language of man confused (but that’s another story entirely – I’ll try to keep on topic). Having ‘-el’ at the beginning or end of the name denotes a reference in some way to God or being ‘of God’, ‘from God’, or a function of God. 

You may dislike the idea that angelics stem from God or gods that perhaps you don’t believe in even though you do believe in angels and that’s okay. There’s always a way around these things but for the moment I’ll get back to...

There aren’t just individual angels bouncing around them there heavens – oh no. For many traditions there isn’t even just one heaven – heavenly realms – plural. Shamayyim – Hebrew often translated as heaven is actually a plural meaning heavens (Deut 10:14 – heaven of heavens, highest heavens). Paul speaks of the third heaven in the New Testament (2Cor 2:12). The Gnostics speak of many aeons surrounding the planetary realms before getting anywhere close to the Treasury of Light. Within these layers of intelligence there are Orders of angels with specific functions.

Open for your interpretation is the possibility of billions upon zillions of intelligences that are entirely aside to the whole angelic buzz that’s going on for the traditionalist. The Father's House has many rooms and all that. Think pantheons, Rome, Greece, Norse and Celtic gods and goddesses? In the Old Testament we’re told to have no other gods but God. Why, what were the choices? But ahem, I digress and wanting to avoid a stoning… moving along…

There are realms of angels with precise energy signatures (after all that’s what a name is, isn’t it?) and then there are the guys that hightailed out of heaven on Lucifer’s coat tails. The fallen angels, often times referred to as demons, we met in Mary’s post the other week.

The most commonly recognized Orders – Hashmalim, Malachim, Seraphim, Cherubim, Elim, Ishim, Ophanim, Hyos Ha Koidesh, the Twenty-Four Elders (not a conclusive list) – overseeing everything from inspiring music and art to ruling and security; bringing down fire, communication and my favourite – singing – yay for the party in the heavens. 

Then we have the Michaels, Gabriels, Uriels, Raphaels, not just one Archangel but whole hosts of angelics operating within that vibration, busying themselves with protecting and healing, announcing and bringing forth, uh…stuff. Throw in all the other angelics you can think of and that’s one hell (oops – heaven) of a gathering.

This fabulous rendering of Michael binding Lucifer (and oh the plot bunnies that throws up) by Guido Reni shows an androgynous beauty and whoa – that is some tight and well-crafted body armour he’s got on there – leather, Lycra or Kevlar? He’s famous in certain scriptures for standing up for humanity, for binding Satan/Lucifer and generally being an all-round good guy.

Now Lucifer, here’s an interesting character. The most beautiful of the heavenly beings, the Morning Star, (not looking very pretty in the picture above mind you), cast into the fiery pit because he didn’t like the new kid on the block, Adam. Not quite how it went but artistic license and all that. Actually, for those of you that like to delve a little into the old scrolls I recommend digging out a copy of The Apocalypse of Moses and The Slavonic Adam and Eve. They are both Apochryphal/Pseudepigraphal and are sometimes lumped together as The Books of Adam and Eve. The texts give an expanded version of the rebellion in the heavens over the creation of the Adam/Adam Kadmon (depending on personal interpretation). If you delve into the Books of Enoch the Prophet, you’ll even find a list of some of the fallen angels that set up an alternative creation with Lucifer in order to whisper quietly in humanities ear. 

Angels. You gotta love ’em and to each of us they have a particular meaning or none at all. And what a muse they make. Good boys, bad boys, never sure which way to hedge their bets boys. And girls, of course. Or maybe not. Asexual, pansexual, anything you want sexual, angels can do it and be it all and there is no shortage of authors exploring their own interpretations of heavens, hells, angels and demons.

Perhaps you have a favourite or one that really didn’t work for you at all? I’ve certainly come across books that fall into both camps. I keep thinking that one day I’ll write about angels but there’s something about solidifying them into words that doesn’t gel with my muse. I’m happy to leave it to the many authors that do it well and let the closest I come to the concept be Reeve, my paralemptor

And boy is he going to have fun when he tries out the human life…and all to sample the taste of lurve.

No comments:

Post a Comment