Three years ago Batman & his wife were hanged in a tale of three knots.
Batman's execution was the result of two knots - one he tied or mis-tied, the other came courtesy of the hangman. His wife's departure was by a self inflicted knot.
I speak of magic. The magic of the knot tied to the magic of reel-ality.
Oh so she's just talking of a movie, let's slip back a notch into fantasy mode then.
Let's take a trip that is neither reality nor movie but rather a seamless combination of both. For a short time lets not make any mental adjustments to fact or fantasy. Lets just see what we see.
I opened this article in the day of The Prestige. It stepped into reality on the 2oth October 2006. On that day, Batman, who is also known sometimes as Christian Bale was wearing a different costume, that of a rough & ready Londoner with a talent for magic. He may or may not have led to the death of a fellow magician's assistant (& wife) because of the knot with which he bound her hands. The twists & turns that result from this event lead to his wife's suicide by rope. He is eventually convicted of murder & also silenced by the knot.
Twelve magical days later, Adrienne Shelly is hanged in the bathroon of an apartment she uses as her office. It is now 1st November - the time of the year when the veil between worlds (which worlds?) is considered to be at it's filmiest.
Two years pass & Batman returns from the dead, truly now he is the Dark Knight. He joins forces with another hanged man. This man who sometimes went by the name of Heath Ledger, has also died by the knot, in a time when he wore the name Ned Kelly.
Two hanged men walk into the lives of millions of people all over the world - no one notices a thing - they wear disguises, costumes, makeup, but Batman's voice has surely suffered from the effects of hanging.
Batman's butler who is sometimes called Michael Caine, pretends not to notice that his master has returned from the grave, yet it was he who helped lead him to the rope in those Prestigious days, when he wore the costume of a man named Cutter (another throaty reference perhaps).
The name of Caine loops deep into the Biblical past when brother killed brother, then whiplashes into the future, once again seeking it's own kind. It slips around the neck of a man in a hotel room who had walked in that name in a different time. Sometimes this man was known as David Carradine.
The ritualistic noose remembers back to the last decade & the day the music died, the day it silenced the music. Not just any day but the sacred day for sun god sacrifice - November 22nd. Michael Hutchence, another noose, another hotel room, another story of suicide or kinky sex. But did the noose slip up that day? How strange that a man whose 20 year career was his voice should violate that part of his body.
The Grasshopper died in Thailand. It's sound loops back into history & finds knotty twinning roots at Tyburn (Tie-burn) - England's gateway to hell - where for over 600 years & an estimated 50,000 are executed. Each one individually threaded through the eye of a noose & ritualistically strangled.
From wiki 'The first recorded execution took place at a site next to the stream in 1196. William Fitz Osbern, the populist leader of the London tax riots was cornered in the church of St Mary le Bow. He was dragged naked behind a horse to Tyburn, where he was hanged."
As the noose is the symbol of execution so the name of Tyburn was it's literary equal.
Tyburn seems to have relocated from time to time, but it's general location was in the area now inhabited by Marble Arch. The Arc de Marble began its life as a gateway in a Buckingham Palace make-over.
For no particularly apparent reason this little monument was loaded into a wheelbarrow by a couple of royal gardeners in 1851 & trundled down the road to it's current location...
which just happened to be in the very local locale of the infamous Tyburn Tree.
From wiki "In 1571 the Tyburn Tree" was erected near the modern Marble Arch. The "Tree" ... was a novel form of gallows, comprising a horizontal wooden triangle supported by three legs (an arrangement known as a "three legged mare" or "three legged stool").
From elsewhere - "The Tyburn tree was a huge triangular construction, the three posts were 18 feet high and the crossbeams were nine feet long - capable of hanging 24...Being hanged at the tree was an agonising death; standing on a wagon with a rope around their neck the condemned waited for the horse to be whipped so that it ran forward. This meant that as the wagon moved away the prisoners were only supported by the rope around their necks. A slow death by asphyxiation followed."
Wiki again; "Several felons could thus be hanged at once, and so the gallows was occasionally used for mass executions, such as that on 23 June 1649 when 24 prisoners – 23 men and one woman – were hanged simultaneously, having been conveyed there in eight carts."
Ahhh what a splendid time saving device - oh no hang on a minute, I forget myself, for have I not read again & again that;
"Hangings were a big public festival. Crowds gathered along the route from Newgate to Tyburn, and around the Tyburn tree itself, often exceeding 100,000. The rich rented upper-storey rooms in houses and pubs so that they could get the best views. Street hawkers and food vendors also lined the route... A grandstand was even erected at the gallows."
One would think that with the marvellous marketing opportunities afforded by this 'big day out', that it would be milked for all it was worth - several shows would surely have been more profitable!
"Even in the eighteenth century the Tyburn Road or Oxford Street was a lively area, with salesmen and shoppers and people stopping for a bite to eat or for a drink. Those who found a seat in the Mason's Arms, a pub in Seymour Place, would get a special view of the prisoners, because this was their very last place to stop for food and drink" - part of the ritual of hanging included a last drink (of some amber beverage, I presume).
From the building site of un maison de Masons;
"There is no symbol more important in its significance, more various in its application, or more generally diffused throughout the whole system of Freemasonry, than the triangle...The equilateral triangle is to be found scattered throughout the Masonic system. It forms in the Royal Arch the figure within which the jewels of the officers are suspended. It is in the Ineffable Degrees the sacred Delta, everywhere presenting itself as the symbol of the Grand Architect of the Universe. In Ancient Craft Masonry, it is constantly exhibited as the element of important ceremonies"
A quick jaunt on my yard brush (well the broomstick's in the cupboard getting an upgrade), to the land of etymology unearthed a little treasure all wrapped up in satin & bows;
"arch (n) 1297, from O.Fr. arche "arch of a bridge," from L. arcus ... Replaced native bow."
"bow (noun) "weapon," O.E. boga "archery bow, arch, rainbow," from P.Gmc. *bugon... The sense of "a looped knot" is from 1547."
A Masonic Royal Arch & a Marble Royal Arch. A symbolic bow? A looped knot? A noose? Surely knot! And yet this symbol is rather reminiscent of the Tyburn Triple Tree in the land of Royal Arch Masonry n'est-ce pas?
The chequer board pattern in the pic above calls to mind another board that comes with another English 'bow' - Bow Street. I had thought this was an English game, but in fact it was birthed in the US.
The English version is the only one I have ever played. I'd been reminded of this game a little while ago when I found out that Oxford Street & Park Lane, two of the most desirable acquisitions on the board, once went by different names AND in a rather different direction. As Tyburn Road & Tyburn Lane respectively, these roads led to death.
Taking another look at the board it is also rather interesting to note that not only does the Monopoly Square draw to a close with death, it also begins that way too. The second street that's up for sale is Whitechapel Street, the name recalling the Whitechapel Murders, 11 brutal killings between 1888 & 1891 in the district of Whitechapel. I'd been under the impression that Jack the Ripper had killed six women, but something even darker was afoot in this place at that time.
"According to Hasbro, since Charles Darrow patented the game in 1935, approximately 750 million people have played the game, making it "the most played (commercial) board game in the world." Is it just a game I wonder?
Returning to Tyburnian triangles for a moment
"The Third Reich utilized a myriad of colored triangles to classify the various groups of peoples they interned in concentration camps. The colors of the triangles were as follows: red for political dissidents, green for criminals, purple for Jehovah's Witnesses, blue for emigrants, brown for Gypsies, black for lesbians and other "anti-socials," and pink for homosexual men."
And a little more trianguloinformation - how I do love making up words.
"To the Greeks, the triangle is seen as the delta glyph and is symbolic of a doorway"
This from an 1887 Theosophical writing - I know looks a bit wordy, but I've tried to pick out the more thought provoking bits;
"Starting with the triangle as the unit of all subjective operations ...we proceed from a knowledge of the part to a concept of the whole — or unknown unit... When thus raised to the power of the infinite unit the triangle is our symbol for truth. As a symbol for the whole of truth, it holds the key to all science, to all wisdom, and its study leads with certain steps to and through that door wherein the mystery of life ceases to be a problem, and becomes revelation. ...The first idea we get from this single thing is wholeness;... and the equilateral triangle is the symbol that manifests these three qualities in unity. The figure 3 does not do it as we lose in it the idea of three related parts. Three separate 1's will not do it, as the idea of unity is lost. ... Each side of the triangle is the figure 1, ... the unit is a trinity. ... Seen in motion the triangle measures the arc of the pendulum, these successive arcs make the circle and the circle marks Infinity — or the pendulum swing that marks eternity in space and time, and so annihilates space and time. .... Form and motion involve change, the unit cannot change. ... To express the truth of the triangle, is to manifest the supreme energy of the universe..." Full article here here
Was the triangular Tyburn Tree a 'time saving device' giving 'excellent product placement for maximum crowd pleasing effect' or was it constructed along more esoteric lines during it's 212 years of 'productivity'?
Certainly it's triangulated positioning, as an early eye catching roundabout, does call for some attention.
While researching & contemplating, with much head shaking, the carnival event of old London hangings, I couldn't help but equate our modern news service & readership to days gone by.
"If it bleeds it leads" I've been told triumphantly on many occasions. So is queueing for the daily bloodbath err sorry newspaper akin to to queueing up to watch a hanging?
I've written previously about the ritualistic components of news presentation. I missed something back then, something that Tyburn's location has reminded me of.
"In the folk magic of many cultures, the crossroads is a location "between the worlds" and, as such, a site where supernatural spirits can be contacted and paranormal events can take place. Symbolically, it can mean a locality where two realms touch and therefore represents liminality, a place literally "neither here nor there"."
"Not all hoodoo rituals take place at an actual crossroads, but when laying tricks or casting magical spells, many practitioners make use of what can be called a "portable crossroads" or circle with a cross inside, known as an "X" or "cross-mark..."
I give you a crossroads spelling - I'll let you rearrange the letters.
Michael Hutchence's band also came with a portable crossroads - INXS
A rather more forceful fork was wedged into the road in 1946.
"Operation Crossroads was a series of nuclear weapon tests conducted by the United States at Bikini Atoll in the summer of 1946. Its purpose was to test the effect of nuclear weapons on naval ships (apparently). The series consisted of two detonations, each with a yield of 23 kilotons:"( A small aside, do note the name (slightly rearranged) of the first crossroad maker, he was originally taken out in Genesis) -Able was detonated at an altitude of 520 feet (158 m) on 1 July 1946.
Thirty years earlier to the very day, the largest man-made detonation in recorded history, ripped through the French countryside & launched one of the bloodiest enforced sacrifices in history, the Battle of the Somme.
Lochnagar Crater with faux-blooded poppies (300ft across and 90ft deep)
Not straying too far from our hanging theme via the Tyburn Tree we return to Operation Crossroads for another snippet
"The Crossroads tests were the fourth and fifth nuclear explosions done by the USA (following the Trinity test and the bombings of Hiroshima & Nagasaki).
I find I'm running out of weekend again & so must try & tie these up ideas as best I can for now.
I have not been able to separate the idea of hanging from the idea that it's effect is to silence, to shut up. In a very real sense the one who is hanged is forever silenced. In the case of reel life, I wonder if those who are hanged in celluloid, lose their own voice & become merely the speaker of scripted lines (or spells). As I come to a close for now I have found a comment that adds even more fuel to this strange fire - I can't prove it, but did find this line about Michael Caine & his performance in the 1971 movie Kidnapped "I love Michael's great speech at the end before he hands himself in to be hanged." - this would give us a total of three hanged men in one Dark Knight.
In view (ok, well my view) of the feeling (ok my feeling) that hanging has been an ongoing occult ritual, as well as a cultivated visual extravaganza, designed far more for the watchers than the 'entertainers', I ask what possible reason or reasons could there have been.
I have no answers.
However I have had thoughts that it was designed to silence. I'm informed that it was meant as a deterrant & that sounds reasonable enough, but I don't like being reasonable.
What if hanging has been a human-history-wide ritual to cut off access to our voice?. A psychic attack on the fifth chakra of human-kind. This chakra when in full power allows us to voice our truth. It also connects us to our hearing, so methinks it would allow us to know when we are hearing truth AND when the wool is being pulled over our ears. We live in a world of incomparable stupidity - we struggle to identify even the most basic of damn lies. From where I stand, well actually I'm sitting, we have lost our 'sense' of truth. Why?
I'll leave you with a couple of thoughts before I plough my way back through all my spelling mistakes.
Tyburn was home to at least 50,000 silencings. So wtf does it mean when we find Speakers Corner located but a stones throw from that killing crossroads.
"A Speakers' Corner is an area where public speaking is allowed. The original and most noted is in the north-east corner of Hyde Park in London, England." (wiki)
Is this an enormous joke on a population that long since gave up it's search for truth. A goodly number who were executed at Tyburn were simply humans who spoke of what they believed in, but that was a long time ago now.
I do feel that our throats are a highly charged area. Lets round up for now with a fanciful little look at a couple of Mind Control favourites. Just humour me, I'm nearly done.
You've gotta have come across a butterfly or two in your conspiratorial rovings. Why might they be used? How about because of our butterfly of truth. The gland that belongs to the domain of the fifth or throat (truth) chakra is the butterfly-shaped thyroid. It never gets much of a rite-up...but a little word play improves it's ranking no end - Thy Roi (that's French for 'King') & just for creativity's sake I thought I'd stick one of these on the end for the 'd' - it's the Greek letter Delta. Now that's what I call a kick ass gland!
A kinda unnerving, though perhaps rather telling pic here called Butterfly of Life & Death
And finally the good ol' hourglass
I've been wondering if this is symbolic of the choked throat of a hanged human. If humanity carried a 'memory' of ritualistic hanging within it's psyche then could this be our cue to remain mute. Our visual reminder to dumb ourselves down. Don't ask me what this thing we spout out of our mouths is, one thing I'm sure of, it aint truth, it ain't even interesting.
I see this symbol EVERY day, does it reach some part of me that it's supposed to?? Yet more sand poured down my throat as I struggle to speak in a language that I feel is close by, but all to often I fall short of.
This article is part of my attempt to remember how to speak.
.......................................to be continued