**The ideas and interpretations presented here are entirely my own. I am not affiliated with the Golden Dawn, OTO, Grand Lodge or any other local Lodge. Nor am I affiliated with any official organized occult, religious or spiritual group public or private. The data presented here are my opinions, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of any Lodge, organization or anyone else for that matter. I also do not own any of the images presented on this page, they are used for educational purposes only. Please direct here for further information. **
Notice anything right away from the mirrored image above? Was this intentional, or complete coincidence? I have always been intrigued by this particular perception of the Sgt. Pepper album cover, and with this article I am hoping to make a bit of sense to it. I do not think this image is coincidental at all… in fact, I think it says a whole lot about the Beatles and what they were going through at the time. Image originally posted and discovered by Horseloverphat at the SubliminalSyncrosphere, I was able to recreate the image myself (it really wasn’t hard, I don’t know why it took me so long.) In fact, it was incredibly easy and that is half the beauty of this formidable discovery.
This image was simply made by mirroring the album cover diagonally, from top left corner to bottom right corner. No magick involved there. You can even do this at home without photoshop, provided you have a copy of the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album and a trusty mirror. Notice the mirror-line goes directly through Paul’s waxwork dummy’s head. Another “Paul is Dead” clue? Perhaps it is… take from that what you will.
We have seen other versions of this iconic album cover using other methods of mirroring in previous posts. For example, when placing a mirror across the words “Lonely Hearts” on the drumskin, the words IONEI X ^ HE DIE appears, with the arrow pointing directly at “Paul” (or whoever that is in the blue uniform… does that look like Paul McCartney to you??). When placing a mirror on Diana Dors left elbow (our right) a walrus appears in the palm frond foliage. Same idea with Sonny Liston’s robe, place a mirror vertically there, and a Walrus (similar to the walrus costume worn on the Magical Mystery Tour album) can be seen. As amazing as that is, those mirrored images can not hold a candle to what we are seeing here. I am going to attempt my own symbolic interpretation of what I call “The Crowley Pyramid”, it may not be correct. I am probably not qualified to attempt such a feat- but I am going to give it my best shot. There is quite a lot going on in the image, so bear with me while I attempt to explain the best I can with my rudimentary knowledge, vocabulary and skill set. Ready….? Here we go:
To the Toppermost:
The way this cover photo was designed, allows the diagonal mirroring to stretch out vertically into a nearly perfect pyramid when rotated to the right 90 degrees. At the top of this pyramid we have two Crowleys’. This I interpret to be symbolic of the double-headed phoenix commonly associated with the 32nd and 33rd degrees of freemasonry.
“The Phoenix, it is said, lives for 500 years, and at its death its body opens and the new born Phoenix emerges. Because of this symbolism, the Phoenix is generally regarded as representing immortality and resurrection… The Phoenix is one sign of the secret orders of the ancient world and of the initiate of those orders, for it was common to refer to one who had been accepted into the temples as a man twice-born, or reborn. Wisdom confers a new life, and those who become wise are born again.” -Manly P Hall The Phoenix: An Illustrated Review of Occultism and Philosophy [p. p. 176-77]
There is actually much more associated with this symbol than I could ever dutifully explain here. If interested, or for further understanding, try here. In a nutshell, the double headed phoenix could also be interpreted symbolically as the completion of the alchemist’s Great Work. It is a symbol of androgyny, wholeness, being united, the absolute, perfection. Ultimately, it is the symbol of wisdom and immortality. We also have a huge black “X” under Crowley, this is highly significant and allows me to think that I am on the right path with this interpretation.
Symbolism of X:
- X expresses the union of two things, as crossed swords or keys in heraldry, which testifies of alliances, and oaths and secrets kept between two people or a person and an organization or a god. It also has the connotation of sexual union, the crossing of bloodlines, or also the union of species or dimensions.
- X is the symbol of the sun god, a simple rayed sun or star – Osiris – Rx is Horus Eye
- Although a pyramid is usually perceived as it is viewed from the side, with triangular faces, it forms an X in a box when viewed from above. An obelisk viewed from above also presents an X in a box because it is capped with the benben pyramid. A pyramid with a separate capstone can be considered a pair of them.
- The Pharaohs of Egypt were mummified with their arms folded over their chests forming an X. Also as symbol of Osiris.
- X means cross as in crossing a boundary, crossing over or “trans” as transdimension or transformation (“An X is an ancient symbol for change or transformation.. .long associated in medieval and renaissance art with the coming of the Messiah who shall make all things new.” —Jim Tresner, 33° Scottish Rite Journal)
- A phoenix rises out of the X’s. A person reborn as an identity without limitation, without restrictions, without moral code. Source
The Base/Bass in Flowers:
If we are to believe that this “pyramid” has anything to do with Crowley, as the “capstone” suggests, then we should be able to find other Crowleyisms as well. Sure enough, we do. Skipping around a bit, let’s take a look at the base of the pyramid and what that symbolism might infer.
Probably the most prominent symbol in the entire image is the red hyacinths at the base of the pyramid. These, in my opinion have transformed the word “Beatles” into a erect phallus. It is also very close to the symbol for Mars or Iron in Alchemy- or for “male” all of these are representations of the same basic idea- the phallus. This also in my opinion, is completely intentional. Why? Well, on the original, non-mirrored cover, next to the word “Beatles” there is a small circle of red hyacinths. That small floral circle is absolutely necessary for this symbolism to work in the mirrored image. Why put it there if unnecessary? Not knowing the treasure map that unfolds in the form of mirrored images on this cover, that red circle makes no logical sense to the rest of the cover. Except of course for “Be At Leso” which was discussed in a previous article, “Its all Greek to me“.
Consider what the Beatles did for nearly every popular musician that came after them. The Beatles literally opened the flood gates for all sorts of new musical ambitions and talent to awaken or to be recognized. The “British Invasion” of the 1960’s was only the beginning. The symbolism of the word “Beatles” transformed into an erect phallus is symbolic of the musical seeds in which they planted. The evolution of popular music by way of this amazing paradigm-shifting album; Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band.
If you know anything at all about Aleister Crowley, then you probably know that he was really into “sex magick”. His signature included a phallus hidden within the “A” of his first name. Sex magick is one of the foundations of ritual within the OTO. The OTO has also been discussed on this blog several times, perhaps most notably in the “…Like a Rolling Stone” article. It was there that Spanish Tony of Rolling Stones fame admitted the some Beatles members were initiated into the OTO just prior to the completion of the Sgt. Pepper album. He also claimed that with a little help from their friends Kenneth Anger and Robert Fraser, the Sgt pepper cover was designed with Masonic and OTO symbolism to “let ‘them’ know that they know” or something to that effect. (See linked article for further information) I think this pretty much confirms that story to be true.
Just above the *ahem* red hyacinths, (or as my friend SageSigma would say; “ ” haha) we have the transformed Frankenstein monster bust. Again, the Statue had to be placed in that spot intentionally for this symbolism to work. Frankenstein is symbolic in its own right.
Mary Shelley’s 1818 story of Frankenstein has been said to be an allegory of the alchemist’s homunculus, giving life to non-life or creation of powerful magical beings by alchemy. In my perception, that is exactly what we are seeing here. The Frankenstein bust is symbolic of semen from the phallus and we are witness to the creation of the new Beatles. The alchemic homunculi, created by magicians into powerful magickal beings. Sounds crazy right?? Maybe it is. At this point, nothing sounds crazy to me anymore. It actually makes perfect sense once you start to understand the symbolism happening with the Beatles (and so so so many others).
And given all of this, it is hard to dismiss the reversed ‘inner groove’ of the Sgt. Pepper album which seems to inform us: “We’ll all be magick Superman”
The ‘Inner Groove’ of the Pyramid:
We have discussed here on TheNumberNineBlog several layers of symbolism in regards to the Sgt. Pepper album, and from my perspective, all forms are symbolizing the same exact thing. Death, Resurrection, rebirth. The old, tired Beatles are dead and buried and the new Beatles have emerged like a Phoenix, raised from the ashes (or from the “X”s) into new, wiser, illuminated identities.
To solidify the idea of the homunculus, we can look up the center line of the pyramid, directly above the Beatles for a possible confirmation. It is here that we see this curious looking entity.
I interpret this curious symbol as that of a cow or bull. I can see a black-headed bovine with a white spot on its forehead, ears standing out horizontally to each side of its head. From my perspective, the entity seems to be sitting in meditating position. Perhaps an Apis Bull of ancient Egyptian reverence. Ka in Egyptian is both a religious concept of life-force/power and the word for bull. See the sun disk resting upon its head? Is it Hathor? (oddly enough- the “sun-disk” is actually Paul McCartney’s wax-dummy head transformed by the mirroring! “Ou Est Le Soleil, Dans La Tete, Travaillez“.) It could be all of those things, as well as another confirmation of the idea of the homunculi.
A medieval text known as the “Liber Vaccae” or “Book of the Cow” lays out the homunculus creation formula in bizarre detail. The process begins by mixing human semen with a mystical phosphorescent elixir (called ‘sunstone’ THINK- Sun Disk) and ends with a newborn homunculus emerging from a cow. Okay, I am not going to go into further detail here… to be honest it gets really really gross, and I will spare you the details. (They say it’s symbolic… gosh I hope so!) If you are of a strong mind and stomach, and desire to know more try here. Otherwise, that’s as far as I am going. The important idea here is that given the symbols present, we seem to be dealing with a creation story ala the OTO or Ordo Templi Orientis, the Order of Oriental Templars, or Order of the Temple of the East (whichever you prefer). And ultimately, symbolically, The creation of the ‘Illuminated’ Beatles. This idea is only further cemented with the transformed drum skin.
It’s not perfect… but in my opinion completely reminiscent of the OTO lamen. Given the tools they had, I’d say that’s a direct hit. The familiar vesica piscis, the fiery graal, the dove, and the triangle all present within the transformed drum skin! How did they do this?!? The palms surrounding the vesica piscis could also be symbolizing androgyny. This symbolism seems to keep within the same theme interpretations I have laid out here.
“In alchemical traditions, the palm tree is a symbol of androgyny as it possesses the perfect integration of both male and female attributes. This is an alchemical achievement – to be wholly, pristinely balanced – equally united with polarity. “ Source
With all the symbolism on display here, it is quite the challenge to dismiss all of this as coincidental. If there was only one, maybe two symbols that stood out here- then I could dismiss it (maybe) as coincidence. However, this is much much more- and taken on the whole, basically confirms everything.
What on earth does it all mean? Were the Beatles initiated into the O.T.O. during the summer of love 1967? Or were they lucky men who “Made the Grade” having reached the toppermost of the poppermost? Were they simply paying homage to Crowley? Did they know what they were getting into? Or had they been there all along? OR.. was this the work of a couple of associate accomplices (Fraser, Blake, Anger) that wanted to make a statement that they had infiltrated the greatest band in history- to “let ‘them’ know that they know what ‘they’ know“?
I don’t pretend to have the answers. I do not know anything for certain. I could be completely interpreting this incorrectly. There could be nothing there for me to interpret in the first place. If this is intentional (I do believe that it is) how is this possible? What an amazing feat!
All in all, I believe this is some type of creation story involving the Beatles. The “Loveable lads from Liverpool” are no longer among the living. Rather they have symbolically buried their mop-tops and Beatle Boots having achieved illumination among their fellow “lonely hearts” brethren. That’s how I am choosing to interpret this anyway.
‘Nothing is Real’ as John said… So what is the illusion and what is the reality? Do I take the blue pill or the red pill? Yikes! I could ask a million questions and not get any answers. But I am still here. Still trying to make sense of it all. Desperately trying to figure out ‘what the hell happened to the Beatles’ and their influence on the 60s generation and beyond.
Notice anything else I may have missed? What do you see in this very curious mirrored image? I appreciate your feedback in the comments as always.Thank you so much for reading.
I want to give a big THANK YOU to all my friends at Strawberry Fields Beatles Mystery Group- they truly make this possible, and I am forever grateful and humbled by the power of their minds!! Thank you for the help, encouragement and inspiration. David Plate, K, David Aames, and all the rest!! xoxo