Is David Bowie implying something grandiose on his final album’s opening track “Blackstar?” Or simply a pop singer with a strong background in literature?
Continuing along the theme of David Bowie and his work, I finally got around to listening to his final album Blackstar, and I listened to his first track, also titled “Blackstar,” released on November 19, 2015. First thoughts on the single? For one, it sounds like it wants to be a bit like Radiohead or maybe early Can. Also, there is an interesting Eno-esque portion in the song hailing back to his heyday of mid 70’s relevancy (again, I’m a Bowie fan, so I mean no disrespect to his entire catalog or fans of his work). Music aside, the lyrics struck me as being very interesting; after a few listens, I thought “this might make for an interesting article.” So let’s get to it!
A very quick scan online reveals quite a bit of critical analysis related to the album Blackstar and videos “Blackstar” and “Lazarus,” a track also presented on Blackstar. There is also plenty of speculation on the web regarding the esoteric meaning of Bowie’s final album. With that being said, I may very well duplicate the research of others that I’m not aware of with this article, so I apologize in advance if I’ve hit on ideas others have already uncovered or speculated on. If I have, or should others see similarities with other researchers work, I’d love to hear about it and discuss.
The Eye of Saturn
Firstly, I’ll leave analysis of the video to other wonderful researchers who have dissected the two official videos released from Blackstar. Secondly, I’d like to take a step back and look at the lyrics of the song, and how they possibly lay out graphically in terms of occurrence (similar to analysis conducted on NASA’s press release regarding the most recent Earthrise image capture). I’m more interested in the wordplay of song lyrics, television/film scripts, and word usage in written works, and thought I’d give it a go with Bowie’s most recent album. Top 5 “sorted details following:”
Uh oh, results lead to the following progression : I’m Blackstar -> Centre Star -> Eyes
A Potential Definition to “Black Star”
When looking up any material related to constructs of space and the cosmos, I attempt to begin the analysis with a cursory search of material associated with psychologist Carl Jung. Immediately, I found a reference to the Black Star, per Jung’s analysis of Christianity I. Per Jung, he mentions that historically, the “black” star is Saturn; the “black” star is reputed by the ancients to be a “maleficus.” In another publication of Jung’s work regarding Alchemy, Jung notes that Saturn is not only a maleficus, but the dwelling place of the Devil himself II. So, safe to say, and as mentioned by many, many researchers before me, we have a possible link between the Black Star, the planet Saturn, and the possible residence of Satan.
Saturn Saturn Saturn Saturn
It always appears to go back to Saturn. Whether it be Arthur C. Clarke’s “2001: A Space Odyessy” or the film “Interstellar,” Saturn appears in so many works of science fiction as THE celestial body of considerable significance. As one gets more engaged in the arena of the occult and esoteric, and more notably, various researchers such as Troy McLachlan, the construct of Saturn takes on a significantly dense, intense, and metaphysical meaning to humanity and our the structure of our Solar System.
I will certainly plan to create a series of in depth articles on Saturn in the future for my own knowledge basis, and look to put together an exhaustive literature review of the Saturn mythos and how it is grown to where it currently is. For the time being, however, I’d like to return back to Carl Jung’s secondary sourcing of material in respect to Saturn. In Jung’s book treatise on religion and psychology, Jung states that in Gnostic parallels, Saturn is indeed the supreme archon and child of chaos. The name of this supreme Archon? The demiurge known as Ialdabaoth III.
The Demiurge as Presented as Ialdabaoth
The archon Ialdabaoth has a rich history in the early gnostic criticisms still available for review today. Again, I plan for a better comprehensive review of the Archon mythology in future posts for my own understanding, but to quickly present a high level view of the construct Ialdabaoth, some key points of interest per Jung’s summary of older texts:
- Ialdabaoth is Saturn, the “lion green and red”
- Ialdabaoth is both the
- Demiurge and the
- Highest archon born from the original chaotic state of the cosmos
Depending on what schema one follows, Ialdaboth is considered to be one of the seven planetary rulers as the demiurge, or above the seven planetary rulers as their creator and Lord. In correspondence with this line of thought, Ialdabatho therefore either a) created the heaven and earth, and together with its fellow archons, manufactured man, or b) created only heaven and earth, leaving the creation of man to the other planetary rulers.
There is much, more rich history to the basis of the mythos of Ialdaboth. Readers of John Lash and the Nag Hammadi could probably point out several flaws or shortcomings of this quick and high level overview of the chief archon of our reality. And, as mentioned before, this is really only the tip of the proverbial iceberg, as it were.
“Blessed is he that shall find this science and into whom this prudence of Saturn floweth‘
Outside of the pure archon/demiurge association to Saturn, Jung also addresses the alchemical nature of Ialdaboth in context to the universe. I’d attempt to recap his thoughts, but I think Jung’s representation is beautiful and beyond my ability to better summarize:
The alchemists naturally attached great significance to Saturn, for, being the outermost planet, the supreme archon, and the demiurge Ialdabaoth, he was also the spiritus niger who lies captive in the darkness of matter, the deity or that part of deity which has been swallowed up in his own creation. He is the dark god who reverts to his original luminous state in the mystery of alchemical transmutation. III
The spiritus niger, or nigredo, is the blackening process which proceeds the albedo, or the white purifying stage. A degeneration or rotting of the alchemical target into a dark mass is required prior to the rebirth or renewal of spirit arisen from the dark mass.V Much more to come on alchemical works in the future…
At the Centre of It All
So what does this all mean in context to the song “Blackstar?” Let’s assume a couple of things for further speculation:
- David Bowie certainly met interesting people and ideas during his career in entertainment
- Personally, I can only wish that I could meet people with the same knowledge set as he likely did over some +50 years of being in the industry
- Bowie may certainly have been privy to insight of the Mysteries and and received gnosis regarding our reality
- Individuals such as Bowie, or the “Thing” that is behind Bowie and other channels of the mass media, present symbols, clues, and hints to the unassuming public at large in respect to the ultimate truth of the cosmos and reality
I find it most interesting that allegedly the song is in respect to Isis. Per The Atlantic article here, it is mentioned that Bowie possibly mentioned, second hand, that the song was in respect to the terrorist group ISIS. Or perhaps he was misunderstood and meant to imply the Egyptian Goddess Isis and her myth lay behind the meaning of his lyrics. Either way, I could probably put another unique analysis together in respect to the mythos of ISIS and the song “Blackstar.”
With that being said, “Blackstar,” to me, represents Bowie’s final nod to humanity in regards to the importance of the construct of Saturn in our cosmos. “I’m Blackstar, the Centre Star.” Whether that implies that Bowie knew that Saturn was a deity, or that he was paying tribute to the chief architecture of our material realm, the demiurge, Ialdabaoth , or that he was paying tribute to the “Devil” before death, sadly we likely will never know. That is unless he didn’t die, as some have speculated (I still doubt, however, he would read or respond to this blog).
I, however, will opt for the idealistic thought that despite all of the flaws of humanity, there is a hope that we can all transmutate into our original state of perfection upon death. Bowie, paying homage to the belief that Blackstar or Saturn as the deity or object that possibly reigns supreme in our unique cosmos, perhaps realized the soul must pass through the maleficus in order for the soul’s putrefaction of garbage picked up in this material lifetime. Bowie as a gangstar, filmstar, popstar, marvel star, and porn star, ultimately means nothing once the “rot” is blackened away by the spiritus negra, and reborn into a higher glory after the material world dissipates. Maybe the Devil is indeed the centre of it all, but I certainly hope that is not
Well, what do you think? Am I way off on this one? Or hinting at something that makes some sense to others? Unlike Carl Jung, I was given no extensive exposure to Pythagoras and his work, allowed to read Latin texts on the Gnostic sects, or indoctrinated in the material of the alchemists in public schools, USA. I don’t pretend to be an academic on anthropology, psychology, alchemy, etc., but what I ultimately find so rewarding about writing these articles and about researching Hatybov is that the material is taking me places, intellectually, that are expanding my perspective on the world around me. Right or wrong, that can’t be that bad, can it?
Up next, an extensive and fascinating interview with Luna astrophotographer and fellow researcher, Cassidy Kring. Then a return back to Hatybov and his paradigm of our native Solar System.
I. “Jung on Christianity.” Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2016.
II. Jung, C. G. Alchemical Studies. Princeton, NJ: Princeton UP, 1967. Print.
III. “Collected Works of C.G. Jung, Volume 11.” Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2016.
IV. “Studies in Gnosticism and Alexandrian Christianity.” Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Mar. 2016.
V. “Saturn In Transit.” Google Books. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Mar. 2016.