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The Narrowing Path

The staff of Ningishzida, origins of Caduceus, the Hermetic staff of the entwined serpents. 

Ningishzida is the Mesopotamian deity of both vegetation and of the underworld; the implication here being that he is god of both life and death. 

Often seen as a Lord of innkeepers and hospitality, and in some other cases that of warriors and warfare. 

His name translates to something like ‘lord of the good tree’ which in itself is reminiscent of both the Hermetic traditions and those mysteries that steep the name of Odin Allfather in deeper and deeper mysteries as time continues to coil away from the first Hagal rune. 

The tree is therefore to be seen as the pinnacle of symbolic representation within the myths of this world: for we all understand the tree. The tree is strong, it needs light and endures the darkness. It grows ever upwards, though not always in a straight path. 

The tree is provisional, protective, and finite, as well as immortal through its seed. It is both the world, and man, the hub of many different branches, and reliant on its deepest and darkest roots, far away from the sun. 

It is in this way that man has always found it to be something of a god, or at the very least a familiar sign during his many eras of supremacy over nature, and a solid reminder of the prowess that nature shall possess long after we are all gone. 

The ancient Germanic peoples believed that the tree of Yggdrasil was the great cosmic pole; the axis mundi to which all life and realms are connected. 

The English word tree ultimately finds its roots, of course, in Proto-Indo-European descending ultimately from the word *dóru, which is cognate with the Hittite word 𒋫𒀀𒊒 (tāru). *Dóru has been argued by some to have some connection to other ancient words which translate to hard, strong, etc… which is not too much of a stretch if we consider the reverence that most of human cultures seem to have found within the shape and history of this type of vegetation. 

“No tree, it is said, can grow to heaven unless its roots reach down to hell.” 

-C.G. Jung

There is a great deal to be learned from the path of the Solar. And it is not to be scorned that the youth of today seek the positive in an increasingly dark world. 

To be an archetype such as Apollo should be the goal of all young men, for what is more divine than the primal fire of youthful masculinity?

And yet, without darkness, there is no light. This is not news to anyone but the fool. And yet increasingly I see vast numbers of our ilk failing to see the importance of the shadows. 

Make no mistake, the shadows are what our enemies fear the most. Away from the painful incantations of their neon lights, and away from the fluorescent hum of office prisons. There lies the woods, there lies many trees who wish to stand on both of your sides, and greet you as you pass. 

“He who sits in the dark is the bringer of light”

-Kristian Eivind Espedal

There is a riddle to be found in the trees, for they are both of sky and soil. They are Hermetic in nature, and provide man with the perfect symbol of balance within his realm.

This balance is not reliant on anything but the natural flow. 

Imagine, if you will, a tree without its deepest roots.

Imagine, if you will, a tree with no leaves nor height. 

The Hermetic staff, the axis of Ningishzida, has around it two serpents. They chase each other endlessly, and have found rhythm and holy movement. One cannot exist in harmony without the other: for they each chase their opposite. 

Yet the staff of the first wizard, wanderer, magician and seeker was not a serpent. It was the staff which housed them both. 

:The New Way: requires you to sprout three trees which stand for 

STRENGTH 

WISDOM 

SPIRIT

Where there is no need for balance, there is no need for great men. 

As we fill bars with idle chatter, and speak of topics that give us no kickback nor reward we are able to speak our minds and profess the most extreme of positions without understanding what we miss without the art of Sophrosyne (the art of balance).

Easy is the life of a peasant who wishes to only be good or bad. Martial or wild. But this is not the way of the Hero, this is not the narrowing path of the Halithazian. 

It is therefore of the utmost importance that those who follow this :New Way: learn to tear themselves away from all ideals, and the pomp and frill of extremism. There is a balance to be found, and as the quest moves forward, you will be required to find balance as the path narrows before you.

Opportunities will close, enemies will take their aim, and hidden figures will whisper of your fall through any means that might aid them in your demise.

It is in fact the opinion of this writer that they indeed prefer those men who profess only qualities of a specific category. A man who cannot be pigeonholed is the most terrifying thing indeed to all parties. For it reminds them of a nature they had cast aside for greater material gain. It is the quality of a hero who can wield more than just one type of statistic.

They would have you believe that to be both is to be none, and this could not be further from the truth. As is the case with all those who worry about the endeavors and diverging paths of any of their peers, they will choose to misunderstand these actions as a means of protecting their own views of power, glory, liberation, and victory.  

It is not so.

To be called Lunar by those men who howl at the moon from firesides of their own lands, bought and raised by nothing but primal Dionysian fury.

To be named Apollonian by men who admire true light. 

I speak of no such horseshoe theory that pencil-necked computer servants wish to deem all those who have nuance in their blood. I speak of a magic that can only be understood by fellow heroes and magicians. 

The Witchers of our world know many faces, many cultures, many skills, and many spells. It is for these folk that :The New Way: has presented itself. But to scorn those who do not yet understand is not the goal of the Halithazian.

We remain and type into the ether in hopes that others might understand this call-to-arms. 

We await the company of other such men who understand the power that is held within the Staff of Hermes, for the power of the serpents resides only there upon that axis.

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