Feet of Clay.

If there was a prize..

like an Oscar..?

like an Oscar,.. for who most influenced the course of history, who would get your vote? Darwin, Einstein…

Bob Marley, Jimi Cliff..

Charlemagne, he’s a goodun, uh uh uh, beheading in the name of the lord, that’s culture, real culture. Yep, you don’t get visionary kingship like that anymore…uh..

My vote would go to Nebuchadnezzer…

Neb.. I cant even pronounce that.

Neb, Great King Neb, scourge of the Assyrians. He was more than your average angry man in a chariot.. he shaped the way you and I think, feel and value.

..well, being at the head of chariots without number has that effect…

..he was on a mission to shape experience itself. Its with him that being separate from Nature becomes a collective paradigm.

..and cavalry, loads of cavalry..

..with a bee in his bonnet about having been a vassal for three centuries to an oppressive mother that holds you back and sucks you dry, Neb rose up with twelve generations of frustrated individuation and subjugation unchained..

…and well, it wasn’t very nice for everyone else.

The main thing however is not.. What Neb Did.

My nomination is not for all the brave and manly tearing up of everything, but for what was going on in his inner world. Its for the way he was going about all his vanquishing and the absentminded power that he had in order to be able to leave vacuums of power wherever he went.

First off, he’s named after Nabu, son and usurper of the goddess Tiamat.

So we know where his allegiances lie..

He wasn’t just conquering lands, he was unifying a mind set.

…like you do when you are desperatly screwed up having torn down your own ontological security symbolised by Neb’s dream of cutting down the Tree of Wisdom….

and you need people to think like you in order to keep a lid on it all.

And if you are vassal king Zedekiah of Jerusalem and you decide to do your own thing one day….

Mesopotamia being faaaaaar away….

Neb will come and do very horrible things to you….   and its the way that he does the horrible thing… that’s so horrible.

Neb praised Marduk, a sky father god  who’d recently tipped his own missus in the sea and so he was alright with Yahweh..

cos they agreed…. on certain things.

What a bastard! And you would give him your vote for the Oscar…?

I didn’t say I liked him. Its the person who’s influenced us most…. I didn’t say it had to be in a good way.

Anyhoo, Neb’s story amplifys the story of Gilgamesh millenia before, the first solar king who chopped down the sacred grove of the Great Mother, only with Neb the consequences are now spelt out a little…

…you don’t just get away with losing the elixir of life, swallowed back up by the snake goddess because you didn’t value it enough..

No, there’s more…

What he then dreams, after chopping down the Tree of Life and cementing his pact with Marduk, speaks to the consequences of such actions for the evolution of consciousness itself.

Its not pretty.

And its not just about what he has done but what he has become.

and what him trying to sell…..

He dreams of a great statue with a gold head, chest and arms of silver, legs and thighs of bronze and feet of clay and iron. A great stone is thrown down on the feet. They crumble and everything collapses.

Daniel, is unequivocal, ”the statue is you, oh great king.’ He prudently dwells on the way this will pan out years from now …  But the statue is also him, Neb and the pivotal place his divided, narcissistic self,  will now have in the collective psyche.

Centuries later its on every corner store magazine rack.. the tarnished star, the false glamour, the cult of persona, bling and celebrity. The drama, the anxiety, the manufactured veneer of feeling.

The symbol of the now divided/constructed king with his secret weakness speaks of a regressed  state, one in which defensive splitting  has to be used to maintain a system that is both imbalanced and lacking internal cohesion.

Without Her you become divided…

It may please us to identify with the gold head and maybe just wear a really snappy suit over the rest, but constructs are temporary and what isn’t taken down will be torn down.

Neb duly succumbs to the inevitable madness that goes with such fragmentation. He cries to Marduk to save him but Marduk seems powerless to intervene and the foolish king is made to live seven seasons in the wilderness.

And still doesn’t get it.

Seven was the sacred number of She Who Mustn’t be Named.


er, ‘course your thing, er greatness…

The thing is that Neb and his jolly cohorts have been moulding consciousness at the point of a sword for over a hundred generations, touting the flaming-rock-in-the-shins version of events as a viable way to live…

Consciousness, which had previously been under shared divine parenthood for the entire neolithic period, does what any kid does in a divorce situation, he barricades himself into ever more restricted corners of the psyche, defensively splitting himself to maintain going-on-being.  But its like drugs, you have to keep doing more of it in order to maintain it.

The child becomes grandiose but mechanical, golden bright but with feet of existential clay that the story tells us will crumble…

that have to crumble….

and in the meantime we have being the best at everything..



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Psychotherapist/writer/artist/ author of, 'Going Mad to Stay Sane', a psychology of self-destructiveness, about to come into its third edition. Soon to be printed for the first time, 'Abundant Delicious.. the Secret and the Mystery', described by activist Satish Kumar as, ' A Tao of the Soul'. This book documents the archetypal country through which the process of individuation occurs and looks at the trials and tribulations we might expect on the way. In the meantime..... Narcissisim is the issue of our age. This blog looks at how it operates, how it can damage and how we may still fruit despite it.

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