Who is Doctor Stephen Strange, the Master of the Mystic Arts?
Marvel Comic Universe is bringing to us a special hero to the big and home screen, the character of Doctor Stephen Strange. He is not a super soldier nor a mutant but a high inteligente being gifted with natural mystic powers. However, like most of us, oblivious of his natural mystic powers his intellect made him selfish and egocentric individual who do not believe in anything apart from the physical world. Nevertheless, forced by the consequences of his own careless behavior he was compelled to seek help from the mystical realm, otherwise unacceptable to him.
I would like to open a discussion regarding the concept of an Adept and its required preparation in an esoteric school settings like the Rosicrucian orders, not only AMORC but other Rosicrucian schools or orders as well.
Note: This is not a work of fiction but a deep research into the subject supported by many years of study and practices and directed to sincere students of the Rosicrucian Traditions.
- Doctor Strange, Seeking for Healing
- Contact with the Ancient Wisdom
- Initiation & the Astral Realms
- Surrender to the Inner Powers
- Magical Studying Skills
- Sacred Books or Grimoires
- Magical Mudras
- Magical Shields: The Sacred Geometry of 8 and Sigils
- Master Strange
- Sorcerer Supreme
- The Mission
- Images from the Past
- Related Movies
- Post History
Doctor Strange, Seeking for Healing
As fate it may seems, his luxurious life was shattered by a terrible accident which crashed down his successful medical career leaving no other option to him than seek for healing on the Far East. That stage in his life is much alike the Dark Night of the Soul, a well know period of inner transformation thought by the Rosicrucian Tradition.
Contact with the Ancient Wisdom
Sanctum of New York
Reaching the lower stage of his physical life, Stephen Strange are now open for alternative options, in particular those beyond his intellectual mind frame. By referral, he sold most of his last assets and decided to travel to a sacred place on the Himalayans foothills, the Inner Sanctum of the Ancient One, the core on an Order dedicated to keep treats to the Earth realm from the multiverse at bay.
However, he was still reluctant to give up his current beliefs as he said to the Ancient One: "There is no such thing as Spirit! We are made of matter and nothing more! You're Just another tiny momentary speck within an indiferente universe."
Initiation & the Astral Realms
The contact between Stephen Strange and the Ancient One was drive by the requirements to leave behind all that he knows and open himself to inner wisdom. The first teachings of the AO said:
"The language of the mystic arts is as old as civilization. The sorcerers of antiquity called the use of this language "spells". But if that word offends your modern sensibilities you can call it a "program". The source code that shapes reality.
We harness energy drawn from other dimensions of the Multiverse to cast spells, to conjure shields and weapons to make magic."
As a result of Stephen's mind block, the Ancient One decided to apply a shock treatment to Stephen's mind provoking an Astral projection of his body making him feel the reality of the higher realms.
His initiation was completed by opening his Third Eye to the Multiverse. Interesting is that we found many aspects in common with our own experience on the matter. For instance, we also had the opportunity to see our body from the floating Astral body in one occasion and...
...in other occasion we were crossing the Astral realm like a being of fire (exactly how was depicted in the movie).
Actually, the use of power punches like that are something not new in the Western and Eastern Esoteric Tradition. In the Western we have the accounts of Carlos Castaneda, anthropologist who was initiated into the Nagual Xamanic Tradition using a particular punch on his omoplata (also called "The Assemblage Point), which projected him into an another dimension.
Also refer to Moving the Assemblage Point
Another account reported by Paramahansa Yogananda tells us how his Guru (Master) Sri Yukteswar, gave him a punch on the chest, which put him into immediate Cosmic Consciousness or Samadhi.
Surrender to the Inner Powers
To teach Stranger, once the Ancient One said:
- "You cannot bet a river into submission.
- You have to surrender to its current...
- And use its power as your own."
- "I control it by surrendering control?"
The AO replayed:
- "Surrender Stephen!
- Silence your ego and your power will rise."
But what, in that context, "surrender" means? We surrender to someone or some situation. So what is the AO implays by that term? The context of the plot lead us to some "Inner" or "higher" power that Strange must surrender to. The first entity that came to our mind is the first Sorcerer Supreme mentioned by Mordo during Strange' studies. He is Agamotto, and the Eye of the Infinite Stone is the vehicle of His powers.
So when the AO (the current Sorcerer Supreme) tells Strange to surrender is to Agamotto. Meaning that he must allow the power of Agamotto flows through him manifesting the desired power. As only by being one with the origin of the Tradition or with the Egregora of Agamotto he can become a Sorcerer Supreme.
The first lesson Strange learns under the guidance of the Ancient One is how to open up portals to travel to different places on Earth or other dimensions using a device called the "sling ring." However, to develop that skill he need to figured out something that's look "impossible" to him, to surrender the ego control and let his inmate Magical abilities do the job. He needs to lea n how to pass the control from the mind-ego to his higher self. That "surrender" is the basic achievement required for any development of our inner powers.
Magical Studying Skills
Dr Strange have demonstrated during his studies in Katamar-Taj an incredible ability to learn intellectually and magically. One example was his ability to study Astraly projected while on sleep.
We should try that! Its is an excellent idea to save time considering the amount of magical stuff we need to learn.
Another example was his ability to reveal his Astral form to communicate with someone that is assisting him while he was injured in critical conditions.
Magical Instruments, Symbols & Sigils
Magical practitioners used to craft their own tools like magical tables, wands and talismans.
Sigils – The Rosicrucian Tradition resources to the creation and use of sigils extensively. In general terms, a sigil is any glyph or symbol with mystical or magical significance. They are used to represent a spiritual force, such as an angel, archangel, or a divine name of a person or God. Any name or word can be converted into a sigil.
Talismans – These are objects created by the magic practitioner to boost their magical abilities or to help to achieve a particular goal. Talismans are created according to magical rules using materials and symbols. Before they become active they need to be consecrated or charged towards the achievement of a specific end. Usually they are created to draw a particular kind of energy to them, like healing energies, prosperity, protection, etc. Example of a talisman:
You may notice that the sigils around the centre of the talisman have some similarities with the ones used in the movie's Astral shields.
Detail showing similar sigils on the Astral Shield
Master Mordo explain that the practitioners may use some of the Magical Relics, if they are chosen by them. He said that the Relics (magical tools) are necessary because some Magic is too powerful to sustain... so we imbue objects with power allowing them to take the strain we cannot.
Example of magical relics:
- The Staff of the Living Tribunal
- The Wand of Watoomb
- The Vaulting Boots of Valtorr
- The Sling Ring gateway opener
- The Cloak of Invisibility
- The Eye of Agamotto
The Sling Ring gateway opener
One of the first magical tools that the Doctor Strange learnt was the Sling Ring, a shiny hand ornament that focuses mind energy forming the gateways.
Doctor Strange training using the Sling Ring
The instructions to use the Sling Ring:
- Concentrate clearing your mind
- Visualize the destination clear in your mind
- Surrender to the flow of the power
The gateway formed by using the Sling Ring
The Clock of Levitation
Another magical instrument shown in the movie is the Cloak of Levitation, which in that instance acts as an intelligent elemental being protecting, guiding and allowing the magician to fly.
From the "Book of Gagliostro" Doctor Strange learns to use the Eye of Agamotto.
The Book of Cagliostro
A mystical device that allows the magician manifest the astral tools required to manipulate time and space at will.
The Eye of Agamotto (closed)
The Eye of Agamotto, referred in the Book of Cagliostro, also has the ability to reveal the truth under the projection of the Astral Light emitted from the Eye seeing through disguises and illusions (that feature may be explored in future adventures of Doctor Strange).
Sacred Books or Grimoires
The Kamar-Taj Library
The Ancient One Inner Sanctum includes a library of magical books or grimoires, which contains the ancient teachings for the magical arts. Among those books mentioned in the movie are the Book of Solomon, the Art of Projection, the Book of Agamotto, the Book of the Vishanti, etc. some of those books are declared for the use of the advanced students or Masters and some for the exclusive use of the Ancient One.
The mentioned books studied by Strange were:
- The Book of the Invisible Sun
- Astronomia Nova
- Codex Imperium
- Key of Solomon
- Maxim's Primer
- Vedic books
- Book of Cagliostro, a study of time
- Books on Astral Projection
Mudras or gestures using the body or just the hands have been used for millennia by practitioners of the magical and martial arts. Those gestures are used to alter the flow of energy in the body, in the surrounding energy field or in something or someone's energy field. Energies can be redirected or focused using specific gestures.
Examples of mudras or gestures of power used in the movie are:
Observe the gesture of power of used by the Ancient One to force Strange to project his Astral body. She applied a particular energy punch on his heart chakra.
Then the AO used a special gesture of power on Strange Third Eye provoking its opening. Resourcing to Ancient Yoga traditions we found that a special touch or massage on the Third Eye center or at the upper centre of the middle eyebrows can activate that center by a Yoga Master.
Strange, during his training learning the Kung-Fu like gestures used to focus energy for projection. We noticed that similar gestures we learned from a Rosicrucian Master exactly to focus the pineal psy energy for healing purposes.
To Open the Eye of Agamotto, for instance, Strange follows the instructions on the Book of Cagliostro using a particular mudra, first to activate it...
Interesting is the fact that a very similar mudra, called the Third Eye Mudra is currently used by Yoga Masters to open the Third Eye, which is in the Doctor Strange plot represented by the Eye of Agamotto.
The picture above also shows a similar position to use the mudra...
Then to open it. Doing that, the Eye of Agamotto is disclosed from its power enclosure display the green Infinite Stone, which projects the Astral Light.
Other mudras are shown in use in the move, such us:
Mudra used in conjunction with Temporal Loop spell against the Dark Dimension forces.
Mudra used to generate Sacred Geometric protection/defensive shields.
From the Eastern Traditions, like the Kriya Yoga advanced techniques, we can learn that after practicing the chakra activations we may move the energy from one chakra to another building up a powerful energy circuit to flow Cosmic energy between different realms.
The next section also shows some power gestures to create and activate sigils.
Magical Shields: The Sacred Geometry of 8 and Sigils
We noticed in the movie that the Masters of the Ancient One learn how to manifest strange geometrical patterns using the yellow elemental fire energy or the greenish fire energy from the Infinite Stone (enclosed in the Eye of Agamotto).
The patterns that we can see on those images resemble to polygons composed of Sacred Geometry, particularly related to the number 8, and sigils composed of Divine Kabbalistic Names of entities like angels and elemental forces. That kind of combination was made to drawn power from various Astral sources increasing its effectiveness and the magician's power.
The pattern of the 8 express the combined power of the duplicate duality of the 2 added to the double addition of the 4. The 2 is the expression of the duality in the universe and the universe in itself. The 4 is the expression of the powers of the Earth manisfestante in the matter or in the 3D world. Combined, these two vibrational patterns give to the magician the expression of power over the dual universe. So it is the appropriate core for a magical spell.
In medieval ceremonial magic, the term sigil was commonly used to refer to occult signs which represented various angels and demons which the magician might summon. A sigil is a symbol created for a specific magical purpose. The magical training books called grimoires referred above often listed pages of such sigils. Sigil magic is the act of creating and charging a sigil to accomplish a specific goal.
In the Doctor Strange movie, the sigils are drawn as a framework around the sacred geometry patterns.
The Ancient One and Master Mordo teach Strange to manifest in visible form power sigils using the power of the mind to molde the magical Astral Light of the elemental Fire using the sacred geometry of the octagon encircled by some particular sigils to manifest protection shields or alter space and time as described above in conjunction with the Eye of Agamotto.
Mixed Traditions Depicted in the Movie
A Facebook friend, who preferred to be anonymous, wrote to me calling my attention to Hebrew symbols embedded on the city floor during the fight scene between the Ancient One and Kaecilius which was seduced by the Dark Dimension.
Watching that scene, my friend noticed that the name of the Hebrew God Yahweh is embedded on the floor showing sacred geometry patterns including the Flower of Life mixed with a hexagram.
Closing observation (pausing the movie on that scene) shows on the vertices of the hexagram and inside the petals of the Flower of Life the characters “Y” and “K” the short for the Hebrew characters of Yod and Heh.
As a background information, for the Kabbalah, the Hebrew Letters Yod (י) and Heh (ה) represent Chochmah (Wisdom) and Binah (Understanding).
The usage of non-Hebrew characters like “K” and “Y” indicate that a person of Jewish descent conceptualized this as they do not spell out the name of God directly and use “Y” instead of “H”, to represents the Yod (י).
The combination of Y-K is the short for Yah. In the Bible, Yah is found in verses of poetry, often used in the phrase Hallelujah, meaning “praise Yah.”
For example, the Sefer Yetzirah (the book of Formation) begins by saying that Yah ( יה ) “engraved” and created the Universe.
Also Y-K is the short for Tetragrammaton, a Greek word meaning “four letters” or the name of God formed by the 4 Hebrew consonants YHVH (Yod, heh, vav, Heh).
Getting back to the image, we also noticed that the “Y-K”s are reaped 6 times.
Resourcing to characters values Numerology we can work with:
Y=10 + K=5 = 15 = 6 which is the number of the Hexagram.
6 x 6 = 36 = 3+6 = 9 which is the number of the Magus.
At this point we may recall that the Hexagram is used to work with Planetary magic. Which is exactly what Dormanu is doing while manipulating humans to its ends. On the other side we have the apoteose of Dr Strange, finally doing its final battle to become the Magus or the Sorcerer Supreme. As we can see the destiny was written on the stone floor according to the Divine Plane of Yahweh/Agamotto.
References to the Book of Cagliostro may had reinforced the Kabbalistique influence in the movie plot as well as presence of the Hebrew Tetragrammaton on the battle field floor.
After a crash course in magic, Doctor Strange become Master Strange entitled by the Ancient One herself after he successfully defended the New York Sanctum.
The Sorcerer Supreme
Still... Master Strange have to rise himself to higher levels of understanding, knowledge and wisdom to become the Sorcerer Supreme or the rightful replacement for the AO on this realm. As the comic story goes, the AO is not gone but is living on the higher/Inner Planes after her physical death. An interesting parallel is what happened with Luck Skywalker's Jedi Master Obiwan Kenob after been murdered by Darth Vader in the Star Wars saga. His master continued assisting his pupil from the higher planes...
However, one question remains... Why the Ancient One was drawing energy from the Dark Dimension during so many centuries to die after the initiation of Master Strange? Finally she found the rightful successor after all that time?
What's the purpose of the Sorcerer Supreme and the Masters? Strange learnt that the purpose of the Sorcerer Supreme is to maintain the Earth mystical shields generated by all three Sanctums around the world. Those shields protect the Earth from other dimensional beings that threaten our universe. So it s a Mission related to the Mystical Plane.
The mission of the Masters is to protect the Sanctums. The Sanctums are located at three major cities: London, New York and Hong Kong. Master Strange, after the battle with the Dark Dimension minions, was assigned to guard the New York Sanctum Santorum. That is a Mission related to the Physical Plane.
Interesting to notice that according to the esoteric tradition the Earth is protected by an Energy Grid created by the Master Atlanteans with exactly the same purpose. While the Sanctums are protected by an energy structure forming a triangle around the planet, the energy grid is formed by energy from major monuments/temples created by the Ancients obeying the structure of the Flower of Life.
What is the difference between Mage, Wizard and Sorcerer?
That's is the question tormenting several movie goers. Is there difference between a Sorcerer and a Mage? Let's see for instance another similar movie, The Sorcerer's Apprentice released a few years ago. In that movie, which relates to the Arthurian Tradition, the Master Sorcerer was able to transmute energy states, cast spells and also access a Mirror Dimension. Likewise Master Strange, he was able to work with a mix of White and Black magic to accomplish his objectives. Again very similar indeed with the magical activities performed by the AO and Strange.
- Mage the word comes from the Ancient Greek (magos, meaning simply “magician”).
- Wizard as you might guess, comes from the Middle English wys or 'wise' and originally meant more a 'diviner' than 'wielder of magic power".
- Sorcerer comes from the Latin sortiarius or "one who influences, fate, fortune".
Obviously we see a kind o mix of concepts when we look at the current movies. Clearly the script writer didn't delve much deeper on the subject before they use their keyboards. Or they simple like to use stereotypes which are much simpler to be absorbed by the audiences.
Also refer to:http://www.differencebetween.net/miscellaneous/difference-between-wizard-and-mage/
According to the Western Esoteric Tradition, the Mage/Magus is the ápice of the magician's career position the wizards and sorcerers in a lower level of knowledge and wisdom. We my also position the wizards and sorcerers related to the natural Magic or paganism. From that point of view, Doctor/Master Strange should be positioned as a Magus and not as a Sorcerer. In general sorcerers and wizards scope is limited to divination practices and communion with land and personal spirits.
Images from the Past
Holly Agamotto! We are just watching some old cult movies for a change and them WOW! Playing The Spirit (2008) movie we look at the opening credits and we had that strange feeling of dejavu... haven't that logo a uncanny resemblance to the one used for the New York Sanctum?
The Spirit opening scene - looks familiar, isn't ?
The resemblance between Doctor Strange seems that does not stops in the logo, yes it goes further into the plot constructed around mythological magical objects like the Golden Fleece and Immortality based on dark forces. Not sure? Watch the movie again... and you'll be surprised with the similarities.
- Dr. Strange (1978) - Original Marvel movie for VHS. Plot: A psychiatrist becomes the new Sorcerer Supreme of the Earth in order to battle an evil Sorceress from the past. Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0077469/
- Doctor Mordrid (1992) - The ordinal movie was entitled Doctor Strange, but the Marvel group imposed copyright restrictions and the movie was renamed as "Doctor Mordrid". Plot: An unspeakable evil has come into our dimension and wants to rule over Earth using Alchemical stones, and only a mysterious Sorcerer known as Doctor Mordrid, a forensic occult specialist, can stop him. Link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0104115/