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Friedrich’s Angels in Adoration of God. Are their eyes turned heavenward towards the radiant light of a supreme being? No, they look down upon a cumulation of heavy clouds over which they hover weightlessly, as if formed from the same air, shaped and suspended by the same wind (pneuma) or breath (psyche) of spirit. The darkening clouds also merge into the light. Indeed it is only in this light that they come to light in their murky darkness. The light into which the clouds merge is the self-same light in which they and the angels, emerge into visibility. It is this self-same breath that forms them, the breath of the holy spirit. Cloud mass and angels are twin manifestations of the self-same light and breath of the divine. Air darkly condenses itself in a heavy and water-laden cloud mass that is only visible in the light. What the angels adore is not a divine being but a divine becoming – the mysterious and cloudy coming into presence of airy matter as the very soul substance of the Holy Spirit or pneumatos hagiou - its condensation as watery darkness and its revelation in the light – that divine light of awareness in which alone all the elements, light or dark, become visible. Why no radiant Sun, why no splendour of glorious rainbow colours in this angelic adoration of the divine? Angelos means message bearer. In the murky shades of brown that emerge from and merge into the light is borne across the central message and mystery of the divine - the mystery of constant creation. The mystery that unites the soil of the hidden earth below the clouds with the heavenly heights above them - heights in which light itself becomes blackly concealed and invisible - occult. The angels float like clouds between heavenly heights of spirit and earthly depths of soul. Like the clouds over which they hover, they too are laden - not with moisture but with the mystery itself, not with water but with the awe that holds them in suspension between heaven and earth. They have not ascended to or descended from the heavens. Instead, like the clouds, they float in the very atmosphere or aether of the divine and are composed of it. Their bodies are elemental and aetheric bodies – the very air of soul made manifest as the soul of air, and condensing as dark, watery cloud in the light of the divine. The angels are not half-human and half-divine. They are the divine human – our divine souls and divine soul bodies. Divine twins of our humanity. Our doubles.


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