This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

NOTICE:
This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6

The symbolism of the Black Virgin

We have thus far said that Mary is a kind of avatar of universal substance, the stuff of which all things are made and thereby the mother of all creatures, a perfect personification of the eternal feminine. In this sense her mystery is something primordial and ineffable, and in its own way dark and chaotic, as from the depths of things and beyond the depths of all things, and from that ineffable soil she received the Logos and the fruit of her womb is the Wisdom of God, and she is this Wisdom, its voice being her own voice. This is why Mary is often powerfully associated with the color black, and its symbolic meaning: hidden knowledge.

The most powerful and popular symbol of Mary as the manifestation of hidden knowledge is the famous Black Virgin, involving a depiction of mother and child, almost always in the posture and countenance, with the mother sitting and presenting the child on her knees, the mothers eyes forward in an eerily vacant expression, the child raising his arms as if conveying a blessing.

The meaning of all of this, but in particular the color black, is often not adequately developed. In fact this symbol serves to recapitulate all of the ‘Great Mother’ doctrines of the ancient world, in Greece and in particular Egypt, while transcending them and connecting them with Christ the Logos.

The color black itself can be seen as symbolizing apophasis, the unknowing knowledge of the Cloud of Unknowing, the only kind of knowledge of the Divine we may obtain, light unqualified and therefore beyond color, supra-rational and which obliterates even the memory of the experience, a light so ineffable that it was aptly described by Pseudo-Dionysius as ‘a ray of darkness.’

Obviously, then, we are not dealing with any kind of ethnic or racial questions in this context.

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