Chaos: An Alchemical and Psychoanalytical Perspective

In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order

Carl Jung

Recently I have been diving into a lot of “occult” material, revisiting teachings I grew up with as well as looking to expand my knowledge of Alchemy and its relations to the mind or what modern psychology calls Psychoanalysis.  I seek to understand more why people fear diving beneath the surface of the subconscious–why are there too many people who still erroneously think chaos equates to something bad, as such they will do anything to avoid looking in.

What I write next is a summary of my own learnings as well as a summary of many other wonderful teachers on the subject of alchemy and psychoanalysis…

When asking anyone about chaos most people seem to equate it to something catastrophic therefore it must be bad right ? WRONG!

Giving the current circumstances we find our world in,  there is no better time to talk about chaos but let’s do so from a different perspective; instead of simply labeling it, I want to look at what chaos is, how chaos has affected our lives and how human beings have affected and changed the meaning of Chaos.

It doesn’t take a very observant person to simply look around and understand the sad state of affairs in which we find ourselves in; economically, politically, spiritually (self development + divinity) and socially.   When talking about the already mentioned subjects most people tend to be sarcastic, as if they have already given up and gotten used to the current state of affairs and used to being lied to by new regimes, new politicians and leaders who talk and promise a lot yet deliver little.  Believe it, or not all of that was foretold by the ancient ones; not because they had a crystal ball but because they understood that life is made of cycles and with each cycle human beings are free to decide which direction life will take.  What they tried to tell us was that in order to understand life we need to understand and accept chaos as is, not as we have made it to be– in understanding the power of chaos lies the answer– Now I propose to you an interesting question, if chaos and all the current affairs were foretold then is chaos chaos? Think about it, by our modern definition chaos is supposed to be random, without order; as such one should not be able to predict it.  If it is foretold, doesn’t that mean there is a hidden order within chaos? Let’s dig deeper.

When studying sacred texts from all different cultures, one is confronted by the reality that no matter the distance and the superficial differences found, all teachings are trying to guide humanity towards the same thing…EVOLUTION not indoctrination. Ancient teachings try to put the power of transformation where it belongs; within you; not on something out there which will liberate you of your responsibility to change. 

In studying all of those texts one becomes capable of recognizing the order hidden within all teachings; all of them are set up in steps to develop your character, broaden your consciousness, develop a real intimate connection with the spirit and the mind, therefore exploring your own power and divinity.  The other common factor found, is that the starting step is CHAOS.  There is no way to miss this step as each step builds upon the previous one; to try to avoid chaos is to try simply put on blinders and think one is seeing clearly.

All sacred texts talk about chaos as the first step (sacred texts not necessarily mean religious texts but it does have those included in their original versions; without hidden agendas)  Perhaps the most common texts are the bible and the Torah which state quite accurately “In the beginning there was chaos”.  They all then set the foundation on “chaos” yet most people today when asked about the real meaning and purpose of chaos, have no idea whatsoever as to its meaning or value.

The “Initiates” taught all of this yet for the most part we didn’t get it or we were instructed erroneously.  All sacred texts whether Mayan, Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Islam, Shamanic, Egyptian, Sumerian, etc. are there to help us awaken to what chaos really meant, yet thousands of years after Christ, Buddha, Mahoma and others are gone, we still don’t understand chaos.  Part of the problem for not understanding the real meaning of chaos is the fact we were taught indoctrination over thinking and introspection. 

Science; specially quantum physics;  is more and more trying to understand chaos.  Science is starting to scratch the surface of a subject which to the Initiates was “The subject” for thousands upon thousands of years.   One can take the paradigms of science to try to understand chaos but it is like trying to understand a complex subject being taught by kindergarten teachers when in reality there are masters who wrote, taught and left their wisdom readily accessible.  This wisdom is accessible to anyone who is willing to truly embark in the journey within, its relation to the world we live in and the cosmos.

To make it simple to understand why chaos is considered the milestone, I will put it bluntly:  It is impossible to come face to face with someone on the journey of self development/healing who is not confronted with chaos, as such it cannot be avoided.

Most people will choose to look in only when their lives are in complete disarray; in other words “chaos”.  They can be in chaos financially, socially, professionally, romantically, etc. but they are in chaos; that is where it all starts yet they lack the ability to understand what chaos is, as such they see it as the enemy.

No one is saved from experiencing chaos at one point or another therefore chaos is a very important concept to be understood; one could say chaos is then the great teacher.  As intelligent human beings we need to take a step back  and recognize if we come face to face with chaos so often, if it is such an important part of our lives, then there is something we need to learn from it.   Human beings tend to respond to chaos with more chaos, this means we are faced with a real challenge  and this particular challenge will not go away as it is part of the fabric of life, yet we need to learn to understand it in order to start shaping our world towards a better path.  

We need to change our perception of chaos in order to properly gear our lives and develop a solid foundation towards self development and healing; otherwise we are simply putting on band aids.  Alchemy and real psychology don’t offer you a quick solution, they don’t offer you fake positivism or simple motivational quotes, they offer you healing but the process is difficult, tiring and slow; yet if you are willing to face your self and face your chaos then the changes will be permanent.

Before we dig beneath the surface and start looking at how chaos impacts our lives and what we should do, let’s start by looking at what chaos really is; that way we can begin to change our perception for as you know when one changes perception the whole subject changes–when we do change our perception of chaos then chaos starts to take the shape of harmony within our lives.   As long as we continue believing that chaos and order are separate, as long as we label chaos as bad and order as good, we will be trapped in a labyrinth and erroneously we will call such labyrinth chaos.

Chaos isn’t absence of order.  Where there is chaos order isn’t lacking, that concept belong to a dysfunctional paradigm.  In order to understand chaos we need to do what science does which is divide it into parts.  The sacred texts divided chaos specifically into 3 parts…in Hindu it is divided as Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva.  In Egypt it is divided into Osiris, Isis, Amun-ra.  To Shamans it is divided Kay pacha, Uku Pacha, Hanan Pacha.  To the Greeks the 3 Moira: Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos….and as such we can continue naming quite a few based on each culture and belief system but that would take too long–What I am trying to say is that there are 3 doors in order to understand the phenomenon of chaos.  Three doors which in our modern times have been codified by science and psychology into symbolism, realism and Imaginary.

What does chaos symbolize?

What is in reality chaos and what do we imagine chaos to be?

Let’s use the 3 doors to start unraveling Chaos:

The imaginary version of chaos is the obstacle to the other two doors; it is such because we are constantly imagining chaos to be something to avoid.  We tell ourselves if chaos didn’t exist we would be happier; such concept makes no sense but we like to delude ourselves that it is so, specially when for too many years we have misunderstood the teachings of many  Initiates.  Let me give you an example of what I am talking about by looking at Christ and Buddha.  Most people associate both of them with harmony yet they came to teach about chaos; like all Initiates they went to seek chaos, in other words they sought to confront that which most people hide from.  Christ even said clearly “I bring the sword”, his own conduct was that of provoking and confronting the romans using knowledge as the sword.   Now let’s look at Buddha…before his illumination he lived in a palace and had a pretty “harmonious” life, why seek more then? He had everything most people dreamed of yet he left everything and went to seek illumination which is to seek and confront chaos.  What I’m trying to say and I hope it stays with you is this….If we have great examples of people who changed the course of life is because they were willing to seek and confront chaos instead of seeking comfort and immediate gratification which can be found in many things including the false belief of being better than others because one belongs to a particular religious group or one preaches positivity only–then chaos can’t be bad if properly understood and used. 

Chaos is not lack of order, there is a hidden order within yet we can not see that order because we choose to believe there is no order to be found.  Let’s start by taking a closer look at the Greeks who were the ones who invented the concept of chaos; before them various cultures had personifications of chaos not concepts of chaos.

The word chaos signified “what is before creation”  That is something extremely important to remember.  If I say chaos is lack of order then I am equating it to something that doesn’t work or is so messed up right? something damaged, something random and out of control.  But if I say chaos is what happens before creation then my perception of chaos changes; I then look at chaos differently and seek to discover something else, something valuable, something with meaning.   I can then begin to understand what it is that I need to resolve. I don’t have to resolve chaos, I have to resolve my lack of creation.   Understanding this is holding the key to your life changes. 

Now let’s change from the Imaginary to the symbolic…. No better examples than the ones presented to us in the bible or the Torah; to name but a couple.  Both stated that when faced with chaos the deity created universes. By crossing the door of the imaginary to the symbolic,  we have crossed the most difficult door– the imaginary door holds the key to the other two doors– since all doors are connected by imagination, then this can either unite or divide depending of how we look at it.  In India they call the imagination process Maya, which means Illusion and it is our biggest challenge.  To learn to differentiate our lives from the illusion created by our surroundings, false paradigms and the accumulations of mental and spiritual wounds and scars is the battle we are in for. By changing our perception of chaos we crossed the first door and moved to the door of chaos within symbolism.

Why is the first door so difficult to cross? because is an illusion and illusions are powerful so long as we don’t confront the hidden parts within or have not healed parts that still need healing; the illusion triggers our fears.  That is why in Egypt the first door was represented by the sphinx–majestic but scary– it was the guardian.  It was there to challenge people and only let in those who did seek to confront their shadow in order to break the illusions.   If  one chooses to continue to look at chaos as something that is bad and without order then that person will be helpless to change situations yet if one understand there is an order hidden and within it the prime matter to create or recreate one’s life then that person is ahead of the game as they go from imaginary to symbolic to real.

Chaos which is a concept and a symbol is the prize to be won.  Chaos signifies lack of creation by those observing it; it is not the same to say it lacks order as it is to say it lacks creation.  Chaos has a unique order and until one is  willing to understand and decodified chaos and find the pattern then one is not able to create.   When talking about chaos in realism, we are talking about a concept which is negated by modern paradigms.

Let me give you a “real” example of order hidden within chaos; if I drop a china cup on the ground it will break into many pieces, one can say the broken pieces are the expression of chaos as apparently they fell randomly without order; however, people like Newton and Descartes; both who were avid students of real alchemy and the occult; came to show us that there is an order within chaos.  If you pay close attention to the broken pieces on the ground you will notice that the bigger pieces will always go further than the smaller ones, this means there is an order within that which seems to be random.  Another example is our planetary system, since the moment of the big bang within each planetary system we can see how the big planets are further away than the smaller ones–interestingly when talking about the big bang we are once more talking about creation!

Science is trying to identify the hidden order of things, unfortunately at times when trying to understand something without following the order set by nature, one is only left with glimpses of what is.   When Newton showed us that there is an order within an explosion, he also showed us the correlation of chaos within people.  A person who finds himself in chaos is someone whose challenge is to identify the hidden order (finding the wounds behind the problem) and then using that order to create a better suited life.

When asking patients who find themselves in chaos what is wrong, they can spend their whole session and subsequent ones describing the chaos; what they won’t describe is what they want and how to achieve it; which means they are lacking creation.  Here is where real psychology hits a wall with modern medical psychology and/or positivity coaches who think that by bypassing the first part and providing options to creating a better life they have provided a better way.  Those techniques long term are useless and no different than trying to hide the sun with one finger. Immediate attention in critical situations can benefit from such technique, however it is a tool to be used when dealing with “crisis”, not a solution. One can put a band aid on a bleeding wound but until the body is ready to heal the wound will remain open.  Real healing can only be achieved by discovering the inner world of the patients, which means taking the time to discover the patient’s unique order within their chaos so as to provide them with the key to create.

There has to be a balance between examining the old and building the new otherwise it won’t produce long results.  Of course this course of action known as Psychotherapy is long and tenuous but it works. Psychotherapy is not the only path but it is one of the most reliable and respected ones. One can choose self development through stoicism balanced with philosophy, mediation and body work or use all of them combined; it comes down to the level of “crisis” the person is in or the level of negation, which will determine which path works best.

What do I mean by negation?  In our society we easily identify people who “need” help or have a problem or illness, if they are openly showing us signs of having difficulties, what we fail to understand is that we are all in need of healing and therapy.  Those who choose to believe they have nothing to work on, who think they are perfect or think that preaching positivism will help them build character are the ones who are in negation.  They are so removed from reality that they have literally bought into the illusion and will do anything to protect that illusion.  More often than not they seem better adjusted to society yet they lack the introspection to know that any person defined as well adjusted by an ill society is by definition someone ill and in need of help.

As Aristotle openly said, to suppress chaos is to create more chaos within one’s life.  Chaos is a teacher not an enemy and cannot be suppressed as it will only come back with more force.   The Greeks took the word chaos from the Indian word Ghaos and the word Ghaos in Sanskrit means to open one’s mouth to exhale, to let out what is inside. Ghaos which we call gas, is an etymology for stretching when one is trying to expand, something most of us do right after waking up.   Ghaos then implies the vomiting of that which is hidden and the expansion of self.  Ghaos is also connected with creation and ideas, however the conundrum lies on the fact that our false ego identifies too much with ideas which bring forth more chaos.  What we have to do is to let go of the idea of who we think we are or who we have been told we are in order to rediscover self.

Idea= the first two letters ID meaning what? identification. The person buys the illusion that he or she is what he or she identifies with.   One has to let go of that idea because identifying with it only generates more chaos as the idea is the illusion and illusion is chaos.

Aristotle (the last of the 3 Greek Initiates who composed the sacred triangle–Socrates, Plato- Aristotle) said there is only one enemy to man, which is not recognizing that we cannot learn to think logically and orderly by the accumulation of more options and ideas.  Within us lies a unique order imprinted in our spirit as to guide us towards a more self developed life, a more authentic life with the ability to broaden our perceptions and therefore awaken the real power within to create a better world without.

In India they represent a human’s head with that of a monkey (Hindu, Greek, Chinese, Inca, Sumerian, Mayan, Egyptian, they all had a reason for their sculptures and their mythologies, unfortunately without proper studying of them people only see the outside and misunderstand the meaning).  The reason they chose the monkey  to represent a human head is because the monkey goes from branch to branch and that can be a very accurate representation of our mind.  If we don’t identify the order within our unique chaos our mind will continuously branch out without purpose; meaning without creating.  That is why it’s so important to be willing to uncover what lies behind the chaos.

Aristotle explained the more we identify with the monkey the more our mind lives by “what If’s” ….”What if I get fired?” “What if I don’t have enough money?” ” What if I lose my money?” What if I lose my status?” “What if I expose myself for who I really am?” etc.   Aristotle equated the “What If’s” with pure venom…. There is a big difference between being prepare compared to being alarmed.

What is the solution to start decoding chaos? Ghaos which means to let out, to vomit.  We need to drop the masks and be willing to vomit all that which is hidden.  We need to be willing to become ourselves.  Chaos and Ghaos go together like yin and yan  or the word Gu-ru.  Most people expect a Guru to be someone full of only light yet Gu-ru or teacher is composed of two words which represent dark and light because in order to reach the light one has to be willing to walk through the darkness.  NO one can really teach about light if they  are not willing to walk through the darkness, vomit all that which is preventing one from being authentic and willing to drop the masks created to obtain false acceptance.

So what to do when facing chaos?…we need to name it which is different than to have one or more ideas of what to do with it.  Going back to the bible (I will use symbolism): what did “God” do when facing chaos?  Did he sit down to think? No. Did he start a war against it? No.  Did he ignore it? NO.  Did he become its cheerleader? No….what the deity did was to NAME IT.

To name Chaos is to use Ghaos!  God named that which he wanted to create. Chaos; the primordial matter; is then our friend not our enemy. 

We have been giving a map to use chaos in the way it was meant to…God created by talking.  The word (talking) orders chaos from ideas not the other way around.  What all ancient teachers wanted us to understand is that in order to create you got to be willing to speak, you got to be willing to vomit that which is crippling you, you got to be willing to speak at the risk of giving up your false popularity and false acceptance, only then will you heal. Even in alchemy or the real art of magick (different than parlous tricks) you cannot create to full potential  if you don’t know the words, and to know the words you need to understand them.  To understand them you need to understand self–otherwise you are simply repeating words without much value or power. 

Christ taught that the word creates, unfortunately like many of his teachings people misunderstood what he was saying.  When he taught about the word and taught how when confronting an enemy one needs to give “Barakah” ; which means blessing but not in the way that modern religions have tried to teach…the worst misunderstanding ever was to falsely teach that Christ meant to simply allow your enemies to hurt you and do nothing.  There is a difference between standing up and vindictiveness.  Giving Barakah in its original meaning is to stand up yet bless the enemy by speaking the words clearly; for what we wish for others we shall receive. There lies the magick.  A person can stand up against injustices and still have no ill wish towards the enemy.  That too has been confused with people who claim to bless the enemy while quietly being vindictive in actions or in words; that cancels Barakah and activates Karma.

Barakah requires honesty of soul for it means to bless consciously– not just something we say passing by or to seem polite or good and one can only do that when one has vomited all the emotions which limit creation.  Barakah is the same etymology as Arakah  or Abracadabra which means “I create my reality by speaking it” . What was Christ doing by teaching to give Barakah?  He was teaching us, that one has the power to create one’s reality by speaking it.

Christ taught us not to curse or damn anyone because the original word for curse in Latin is “maledicto” which means badly spoken, badly said, badly created.  What Christ was trying to teach was the magical power of creation resides in words which vibrate in tune with our feelings.  That is why if we don’t feel something but only say it our reality remains the same.  Christ was trying to teach us that whatever we wish for others will return to us because we are the ones speaking it, we are the ones creating it; it is connected to us so it will return to us.

Christ never taught false forgiveness or self abuse by letting others transgress over and over, he taught the proper way of healing, the proper way to standing up; like many initiates he gave us the way.  Vomit the bad, only then can you create the good in your life–they are connected.  That is why Catholicism created confession yet what they don’t understand is that confessing to a stranger expecting God to forgive you doesn’t heal or mend what has been done neither does it teach character; it is even worst to believe that by simply attending mass one day a week means you are instantly saved even though you keep hurting of others.

What is the next step in self development?….DIRECTION.  Our words have to have direction. Why are words o important?  because as alchemists have taught, our universe works in vibration and the GOD FORCE or primordial matter (chaos) is always ready but one has to know which direction to take.

In the old teachings of India they say the divinity incarnated to help us.  He incarnated in what now would be the equivalent of a taxi driver.  Why a taxi driver? –because the driver only goes where you tell him to.  The driver is the force, his listening ear can be symbolized in psychology by your therapist who is ready to listen to help take you to where you want your life to go.    The divinity then goes wherever you want to go…it is telling you again with words you can create.  It is “the word” that creates not the idea.  For example. I can have many ideas of where I would like the taxi driver to take me but if I don’t pick one, the driver can’t take me in any direction….now if I tell the driver take me north, then I changed my mind and say south, then east, then west, the driver will be confused and won’t move or will drive erratically.  This means if I don’t focus on what my goal is then I will not be using my divine force to create and I will be inviting even more chaos to my life.  That is why is important to discover the unique order within our chaos then using words to let go and confront that which no longer serves us.

I hope you now you have a better understanding of chaos and the tremendous power we hold within and its responsibility.  As I said earlier, the road to healing can at times be long and painful but it is better to keep taking the steps towards reclaiming ourselves than it is to simply do nothing, mask it, medicate it and expect to be cured without doing anything.  Maybe more than expecting to be cured, we need to search for who we were before the pain, who we would like to be and use our power to little by little or in big leaps get there.  It matters not how fast or how slow you get there, it matters not if others perceive you as weird or eccentric as you start to reclaim your true self; what matters is that you are moving when you need to and resting when you need to in order to not only survive life but to LIVE.

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By Sofia Falcone

I passionately believe one person can make a difference. I write from my own experiences and interests. It is my greatest hope that by writing about my own challenges, victories, hopes and learnings, others may feel inspired to believe more in their inner power and to fully embrace themselves!

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