HephaestusÂ (Vulcan in Roman Mythology)Â was the blacksmith of the gods. He was the master of fire, a metallurgist and a craftsman. He was the son of Zeus and Hera. His mother rejected him at birth, throwing him down from Mount Olympus to Earth because he was born lame.Â
Hephaestus symbolises divine power which has descended to Earth and is therefore connected and expressed through the Earthly realm. He is bound to the Earth so he represents the divine power that operates within material form. HephaestusÂ is the only manifestation of imperfection within the Olympian pantheon. Due to his lameness, he is a symbol of creativity which arises either out of defect or through necessity.Â
In many ways this can be related to our spiritual essence, the monad, which is greatly restricted in the expression of its qualities whilst engaged in physical form. It is when we respond to the pull of the monad and begin to tread the spiritual path that we become aware of the numinous qualities of our Soul and the challenge for us to develop and express these. At this stage of human evolution one is aware of their immense potential but can also feel greatly inadequate due to the inability of the human personality to express this. This is why when treading the path one seeks to effect â€˜psychosynthesisâ€™ whereby the integrated human personality can become Soul-infused as a means of expressing the divine qualities of the Higher Self- the instrument of the monad. Hephaestus is a fire god.
The wisdom teachings describe creation as a â€˜sea of fireâ€™ emanating from its divine source. Spiritual development is related to the transmutation of the base metal of the transient human personality into the shining, radiant, eternal gold of the Soul or Higher Self as symbolised by the medieval alchemists. The concept of spiritual fire and its appropriate use is central to this process. The expression of the Hephaestus archetype can therefore relate to humanityâ€™s ability towards utilising the fire of higher mind towards creative or evolutionary ends. It is through the regular practice of meditation, study of the occult classics and service to humanity that this may occur.
In his book entitled The Theory and Practice of Meditation Dr Baker states:
â€˜Kundalini emerges from her uterine cave at the base of the spine only when her lover calls her, when the fires of higher mind have been aroused, when Solar Fire (from above) has cleared the way for her. When the spinal tracts in etheric matter are freed from impedimenta, when the webs between the chakras on the spine have been purged of all dross, then serpent fire will rush up all three tracts simultaneously to her mate, to her alter ego which is Electric Fire, and liberation of the man is not then far away. Electric Fire, the fire of the First Logos, ultimately meets Serpent Fire in the head region and there comes the freeing of the individual from all physical meshes. He leaves the Wheel of Rebirth, his karma is resolved and he enters for all time the Fifth Kingdom, the Kingdom of Soulsâ€™.Â