Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Visual arts, music, poetry and other forms of art.
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Heith
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby Heith » Sun Dec 09, 2018 10:16 pm

How weird, I just logged on the forum because I wanted to post the painting that is in the previous post. Good that it's already here. Beautiful work!
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby obnoxion » Sat Mar 16, 2019 5:54 am

I have found a depiction of Satan from somewhat unlikely painting – Botticelli’s ”Primavera”. We are used to think that the characters on the right side of the painting are Zephyr and the nymph Chloris. But there seem to be simultaneous levels to this most Neoplatonic painting, as it was the spirit of Renaissance Neoplatonism to make correspondences between Christian and pagan art. So the scene of Primavera can also be seen as the scene from Dante’s Purgatorio, Canto 29. Now, this theory is from Kathryn Lindskoog’s book “Surprised by C. S. Lewis, George MacDonald and Dante – An Array of Original Discoveries” (Mercer University Press, 2001; pages 53 – 55):

The three women dancing in the middle of the painting are the Three Theological Virtues (which happens to be my favorite illustration by Dore from the Divine Comedy – I have it on my wall, actually). The two clothed females to the right are Beatrice and Matilda. The Zephyr – supposedly the West Wind that in the painting blows from the Orient – is Satan, who is driving Eve – nude with a sprig in her mouth – towards Adam. The pre-fall Adam is depicted on the left side of the painting in the guise of Mars. The Roman Mars, recognized by his sword and his wingless helmet, was originally a god of agriculture, just as Adam was the care-taker of the Garden. The lower branches of some of the trees near the sword are trimmed. This must be a reference to Micah (4:3 – 4), as the sword of war is changed into gardening tool. (I would add to Lindskoog’s brilliant observations that both Adam and Mars are strongly connected to the color red).

The Cupid floating above Beatrice at the top center of the painting the central theme of Dante’s Divine Comedy – that humans are born to love God and move ever closer to the Divinity, but they go astray when they are enamored by the lesser delights.

For me, this depiction of Satan as the East wind entwined amid the trees is a very powerful image, for I have most often thought of Azazel-Satan as the wind in the branches. But there is more. Two or three years ago, I was traveling by train from a Brotherhood –related meeting in Helsinki back to Western Finland, and for some reason this painting came to my mind. My way of contemplation is sort of visionary, and I kind of have one eye awake and the other one dreaming. So the whole way back I sort of saw this blue wind blowing beside the train, and at the same time a sort of inspiration took hold of me, and on that two hour journey I had formulated a complete and quite detailed idea for a novel. For many years I have thought of this wind as the Zephyr, even though both the wind in the painting and my train were traveling from East to West.

It was only yesterday that I read this theory by Kathryn Lindskoog, but it really shook my little world. I haven’t found that many depictions of Satan in Art that I can relate to much. But this on, even though not knowing for few years whence my inspiration came from, vivified my imagination almost like nothing before. And its effect was exactly the sort of thing that I mean by the word “magical”.
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Heith
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby Heith » Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:50 pm

Thank you so much for sharing the above, obnoxion. Very interesting and thought-provoking, as always. I shall treasure this new knowledge.
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby obnoxion » Tue Apr 02, 2019 5:01 pm

Heith wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 10:50 pm
Thank you so much for sharing the above, obnoxion. Very interesting and thought-provoking, as always. I shall treasure this new knowledge.
I would like to continue, then, on the dynamics of the painting, for I believe they add to our understanding of some vital spiritual concepts.

It is said that the two interpretative models of the painting aid us in grasping the simultanity of the double nature of Christ as both human and divine. I would compare this phenomenon of conceptual bistability to the perceptive bistability of, say, Paul Gauguin's cloissonist painting "Above tha Abyss" (1888), in which the difference between the positive and the negative spaces is unstable, and which incorporates multiple points of perception.

This multileveled bistability creates a dynamic, sending us to oscillate. And oscillation is a central concept in Shaivism. The universe oscillates, and its tendency to dissapeare and emerge is a vibrational presence both macro- and microcosmic. And to the experience of this fundamental dynamic, present in both Shaiva and Christian thought, the art of both Botticelli and Gauguin can guide us.
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby obnoxion » Sun Jun 09, 2019 11:38 am

In our reading group of Per Faxneld's book "Satanic Feminism", there was some talk about how rare it is to see Devil depicted as a female. I think it would be interesting to share examples of Devil as female. Also hermaphrodite devils, like in many Tarot decks, would be interesting.

A very prominent example of a female Devil is in The Isenheim Altarpiece by Matthias Grunewald. In the top right hand corner of the St. Anthony panel there is a female devil, identified as she-devil by her magnificently flaccid breasts. She is breaking the church window with a stone in her right hand, and a rude club made of a sturdy branch in her left hand. She sports three or four horns on her head, and she has a bird-like peak through which something noxious is breathed or spoken out.

I am looking this detail from a marvellous close-up reproduction in Michael Schubert's "The Isenheim Altrapiece: History - Interpretation - Backround" (SteinerBooks, 2017 Second Edition, page 39).
One day of Brahma has 14 Indras; his life has 54 000 Indras. One day of Vishnu is the lifetime of Brahma. The lifetime of Vishnu is one day of Shiva.
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Re: Artistic representations of Satan & other LHP deities

Postby Smaragd » Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:57 pm

obnoxion wrote:
Sun Jun 09, 2019 11:38 am
In our reading group of Per Faxneld's book "Satanic Feminism", there was some talk about how rare it is to see Devil depicted as a female. I think it would be interesting to share examples of Devil as female. Also hermaphrodite devils, like in many Tarot decks, would be interesting.

A very prominent example of a female Devil is in The Isenheim Altarpiece by Matthias Grunewald. In the top right hand corner of the St. Anthony panel there is a female devil, identified as she-devil by her magnificently flaccid breasts. She is breaking the church window with a stone in her right hand, and a rude club made of a sturdy branch in her left hand. She sports three or four horns on her head, and she has a bird-like peak through which something noxious is breathed or spoken out.

I am looking this detail from a marvellous close-up reproduction in Michael Schubert's "The Isenheim Altrapiece: History - Interpretation - Backround" (SteinerBooks, 2017 Second Edition, page 39).
Some weeks ago I noticed this image of a devil exhaling a noxious or poisonous breath inside the temple lurking in to my language. Powerful image although it's such a minor detail I couldn't find a good image of it from the internet, despite a fairly large photograph can be found.

I happened to be on a lecture by Faxneld where he talked about The Ninth Gate movie and the book and a kind of a side theme was the rare occasions of female devils, which atleast the movie version brings forth according to Faxneld. I haven't read the book and I don't remember much of the lecture anymore. In the movie Corso, a book detective, is being helped by an enigmatic female character, who has glimmering green eyes and is sort of a spectator to Corsos actions although she also directs him and helps in morally ambiguous ways. Faxneld specifically pointed her ability to fly or glide in the air. In an investigation scene of the movie she is introduced for us as the Whore of Babylon, which might be taken as an obvious female devil depiction. In the Book of Revelation 17 we can find one of the seven angels pointing at her direction.

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