The Esotericism of Chess by Samael Aun Weor
Lecture by Samael Aun Weor
The game of chess comes from ancient Atlantis, it is a game that was known and practiced by the people of the continent that today is submerged in the ocean that bears its name. Chess symbolizes or allegorizes the Game of Life, or better to say, the Chessboard of Life. Esoterically speaking in light of Gnosis, we are simple pieces governed by invisible or occult forces that we do not know. Some of those mechanical forces are evolutive and some are involutive.
We do not have to forget the revolutionary forces that work from the superior dimensions of space, the Intelligent Principles that are beyond phenomena, creating and creating again. The ineffable beings, the Lords of the Fire, the Masters of the Conscious Circle of the Solar Humanity, sometimes govern the white pieces and other times the black ones; that is to say, they direct the flow of the innumerable centuries.
Some of those beings, called Devas, govern for example the Elemental Departments of Nature, meanwhile others work in many other activities. In all of this there are levels and levels, grades and grades. And every group or family according with its particular ray, acts over the Chessboard that, as we said, symbolizes Universal Life. It is obvious that if humanity would have the Consciousness awakened, it would be able to determine the circumstances upon the chessboard, because logically it would not be governed by the mechanical laws such as the Law of Cause and Effect, the Law of Return, the Law of Recurrence, etc.
What do the four sides of the chessboard represent? They represent the four elements of nature: Fire, Air, Water and Earth, frequently mentioned in all the treatises of alchemy. They also represent the four Existential Bodies of the Being: Physical, Astral, Mental and Causal bodies, created by the real or authentic man in the Forge of the Cyclops, using to the purpose the transmutation of the libido or sexual energy.
Multiplying side by side, the eight squares by the eight squares, we obtain the number 64. At the same time, adding in cabbalistic form this number (6 + 4), then we have the Arcanum 10 of Tarot. Let us remember that the Tarot is the Golden Book, and that by itself, constitutes the Pattern of Measures of the Cosmic Laws. So, the Arcanum 10 is the Wheel of Samsara, the tragic wheel whose three thousand revolutions or cycles have already been studied by Revolutionary Scientific Gnosticism. From the point of view of transcendental sexology, the wheel is the alchemical hieroglyph that represents the necessary time needed for the cooking of the philosophical matter.
Upon the Chessboard of Life we have to annihilate the Ego and to create the Superior Existential Bodies of the Being, making good use of time in the hard work of cooking the philosophical matter. In this form we will be able to get out of the Valley of Samsara. The Ego, the “I,” the myself, keeps us tied to the Valley of Suffering, to the fatal wheel of birth and death, receiving new bodies as a result of Karma.
Now, if we observe carefully the 32 white squares and the 32 black squares, we can observe the evident manifestation of the Opposite Pairs of the Hermetic Philosophy, that is to say, the light and the darkness, the day and the night, the permanent battle between the forces of good and evil that we have to transcend, that we have to overcome. Those black and white opposites are the oriental Yin and Yang: the passive force and the active force. Adding the number 32 (3 + 2) in cabalistic form, we get the number 5 that in the Major Arcana of the Egyptian Tarot represents the Great Law, the Divine Justice. This means that the Court of Objective Justice governs the two antagonistic forces and that the intellectual animal mistakenly called man is subjected to its judgements.
Let us analyze now each one of the pieces of the Chess. But before, let us see this: in total there are 16 pieces. The number 16 is Fragility, the Tower fulminated by the Ray of the Cosmic Justice. Among the cabbalists, it is the Tower of Babel, the tower of the confusion of tongues. As a fact, many are the initiates that fall on the Chessboard of Life as the inverted star. Many are the Fulminated Towers: every initiate that spills the Cup of Hermes, falls.
The eight pawns will also be inverted stars until they awaken the Consciousness and create the Superior Existential Bodies of the Being. The number 8 is the number of Job’s tests, it is a number of pain and sufferings. On the chessboard, the humanoids cannot understand each other, they are the mechanical, unconscious, asleep humanity. In other words, they are the famous Tower of Babel.
What is the symbolism of the king? Why is there a black king and a white one? The king symbolizes the Internal Real Being of each one of us. When in the Chess game, he receives checkmate, it means that the cycle of 108 existences for each Essence that plays has ended, and that the Intimus or Inner Master has absorbed the spiritual principles to let the Essence involute in the infernal worlds (so, it will be liberated from the “I’s”). When that Essence re-initiates a new cycle, it will begin once again the Game of Life; that is obvious.
The white king invites us to reflect upon the Eternal Father, Jehovah or Iod-Heve; the black king indicates the opposite: the Antichrist or tenebrous forces of the universe. Also the black Chess_piece_-_White_kingChess_Board_Kingking makes reference to the Animal Ego, and in general to all the Potencies of Darkness, to the involutive forces of nature and the cosmos. The white king is immortal; he has to fight against his antithesis, he is the one who impulses (from inside and upwards) his Essence, in order to make her to work on herself on the Chessboard of Life.
The Queen has also two aspects: the black and the white. In her positive aspect, she is the Divine Mother Kundalini with her five manifestations, already symbolized by the Hindus in the Sacred Cow of five feet. She is Mary or Ram-Io, she is the feminine aspect of God (God-Mother), one part of our Being, but derived. The ungrateful son that forgets his mother fails in the Chessboard of Life, cannot annihilate the Animal Ego. In truth, the white queen or Kundalini is the electro-magnetic solar fire that stays coiled in form of a serpent awaiting the instant to be awakened.
Those who have studied the esoteric Nahuatl or Hindustani physiology emphasize the transcendental idea of a marvelous magnetic center located in the base of the vertebral spine UnknownUnknown-1between anus and the sexual organs. In the center of that Chakra there is a yellow square, invisible physically, but visible to the sixth sense or clairvoyance. In this square there is a Yoni or Womb, and in its center there is a Phallus in which the serpent, that mysterious energy called Kundalini is coiled. It is unquestionable that only through the Sahaja Maithuna or Sexual Magic, can the serpent, the white queen of chess in its energetic aspect within ourselves be awakened.
In its negative or black aspect, she is the Goddess Kali (of desires and passions). Even now, some tenebrous and degenerated sects of India offer human sacrifices to Kali. So, the black queen is the infra-instinctive and brutal force of nature, it is the antithesis of Kundalini, it is the tempting serpent of Eden, the sexual fire descending into the atomic infernos of man. There always existed and will exist a crude battle between the white queen and the black queen, a fight for their sons and daughters: humanity…
The bishop represents the sexual force of nature established in Yesod, the Ninth Fundament, Sex. The bishop, is the Sacred Lance of the ancient mysteries. The Lance, the chess-bishop-white-riskPhallus, Sex, plays a great role in many oriental legends as a marvelous instrument of salvation and liberation. Used wisely by the soul who yearns, it allows one to reduce to cosmic dust, all the cavernous entities that, in their sinful conjunct, form the myself.
The bishop in this game has a phallic character, it is the symbol of sexual power. Let us observe that it always moves in an X, which remind us precisely of the Cross of Saint Andrew. The extraordinary crucifixion of Andrew made famous the X Cross to which his separated members were tied. Undoubtedly, and without any exaggeration, we have to say that the Cross of Saint Andrew (the symbolic X that certainly is a Greek K), was, is and will always be one of the most valuable symbols of Christic Esotericism. The annihilation of the Ego in the Laboratorium Oratorium of the Third Logos is the profound meaning of the tortures suffered by Andrew on the terrible X. It is the indispensable death that could never be achieved with a vulgar fire.
Obviously, in order to do this work we need the help of an occult agent, a secret fire of a sexual type, (that resembles more water than flame). This fire (or this ardent water) is the vital spark sent by the Logos to the inert matter: it is the Divine Fohat trapped in everything; it is the Igneous Ray, the Kundalini, the Sacred Serpent of the Wisdom of Anahuac ascending through the spinal channel of the adept.
It is clear that we are talking about the white bishop, the Phallus used in positive form to achieve Chastity through alchemical transmutation. It is not difficult to understand that its antithesis, the black bishop, is fornication, the sexual force used in the incorrect eroticism, etc. The horse moves over the chessboard in the form of an L, and this reminds us of the Law, symbolized among the Mohammedans as a horse.
The horse of the chess game invites us to reflect on the mythological centaur and in the constellation Sagittarius. In reality, the intellectual animal is still something not completed, and that is the reason why within himself there are originated terrible fights between his animal part and his human values. The intellectual animal is like the centaur that has to send the arrow of his longing (of his yearning of being) to the Inner Sun or Real Being, in order to return to him.
The arrow symbolizes the Eros force, and the arc represents the three forces: Father, Son and Holly Spirit, that the neophyte has to use in order to achieve the inner liberation. The horse allegorizes the audacity, the boldness, the daring and other virtues of the Consciousness. However, there exists the necessity to eliminate the opposite of those virtues, allegorized by the black horse. In the esotericism of bullfighting, the horse symbolizes the physical body not yet tamed and on which the neophyte is mounted, disposed to prick with the lance the Bellowing Beast, the Animal Ego.
Tower alludes to the state of Alert Perception, that is to say, the Observation that the aspirant has to do on himself; it is a piece of extraordinary value. Without the sense of Psychological Self-Observation, triumph would be impossible on the Chessboard of Life. Do not forget that all authentic self-psychology has three fundamental aspects: Self-Observation, Self-Exploration and Elimination. Of course, the Tower is established upon the Cubic Stone of Yesod, on Sex, because the work of mystical death cannot be done completely without the help of the Third Logos, the creative energy.
So, in a watchful state, as the watchman in the time of war, the neophyte from his own tower, (his brain, his head), learns to Transform Impressions, avoiding the accustomed process of information made by the mind, that is to say, interposing the Consciousness between the tower and the impressions that come from everywhere on the chessboard.
Paul the Apostle said to his disciples: “… You are the temple of the living God; as God had said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” The tower of that temple is the head of the planetary body. The temple of Solomon has human form…
Bethlehem, comes from a Chaldean word that reminds us of the famous Tower of Bel, the Tower of Fire. In order for the Golden Child of Alchemy to incarnate in us, it is necessary to have already created the Tower of Bel. When is it built? When we have developed the Solar Fire within ourselves; then the Tower is built. In that condition, the Son of the Son (the Second Logos, the Christ) can penetrate in us in order to speak the golden verb of the first instant.
In conclusion, upon the Chessboard of Life the initiates have to build their Tower of Fire, if they yearn for the Interior Magnesium of Alchemy, the Intimate Christ, to be born in his own manger. Finally, the pawns are the neophytes or apprentices, those who want to become Adepts of the Conscious Circle of the Solar Humanity; they are those who have been informed about the Esoteric Path that leads to the final liberation, and who for that reason work on themselves, debating between the black and the white.
The white pawn represents the Essence, fighting with the help of the king, of the Queen, of the Bishop and the White Tower against the forces that oppose her development. The black pawn symbolizes the forces of the Ego, those inhuman and sinister elements, that in their conjunct form the “I,” the myself. When a white pawn is devoured because of a bad moved, it means that one has been deceived by the Ego, something that is very common upon the Chessboard of Life.
Samael Aun Weor