WIZARD OF OZ AND THE TRUTH WITHIN YOU
The entire story of the Wizard of Oz is an allegorical tale of the soul’s path to illumination – the Yellow Brick Road. In Buddhism (and an important part of Theosophical teachings) the same concept is referred to as the “Golden Path”. Hence, the Yellow Brick Road.
The story starts with Dorothy Gale living in Kansas, which symbolizes the material world, the physical plane where each one of us starts our spiritual journey. Dorothy feels an urge to “go over the rainbow," to reach the ethereal realm and follow the path to illumination. She has basically passed the low point by demonstrating the urge to seek a higher Truth.
Dorothy is then brought to Oz by a giant twister spiraling upward, representing the cycles of karma, the cycle of errors and lessons learned. It also represents the ancient belief in reincarnation, the round of physical births and deaths of a soul until it is fit to become Divine. It is also interesting to note that the Yellow Brick Road of Oz begins as an outwardly expanding spiral. In occult symbolism, this spiral represents the evolving self, the soul ascending from matter into the spirit world.
Before undertaking her journey, Dorothy is given the “silver shoes”, which represent the “silver cord” of Mystery Schools (Dorothy was wearing ruby slippers in the movie due to a last minute change by the director, who thought that the color ruby looked better against the Yellow Brick Road). In mystical schools, the silver cord is considered to be the link between our material and spiritual selves. The silver cord connects the spirit of man to the body. Once the Silver Cord is broken, we have left the physical world.
The sole purpose of the silver cord, or life thread, is to provide the subtle and physical bodies with vital energy. Think of it as a sort of umbilical cord. Just like a baby has an umbilical cord that receives and transfers physical nutrients from the mother, the silver cord serves as a sort of energetic umbilical cord to receive and transfer Prana/Qi/Pneuma/Spirit. Prana is a Sanskrit term meaning “Life," or Life-force. Without Prana, or spirit, the physical body could not operate as it does. This is why once the silver cord is severed, the physical body has no choice but to die.
Remember your Creator before the silver cord is snapped ..."
During Dorothy's journey along the Yellow Brick Road, she encounters Scarecrow, Tin Woodsman and the Cowardly Lion who are respectively searching for a brain, a heart, and courage. Those odd characters embody the qualities needed by the the Inner Mysteries initiates in order to complete their quest for illumination.
After surmounting many obstacles, the party finally reaches the Emerald City in order to meet The Great Wizard. Surrounded by artifices and special effects, Remember, before meeting the Wizard, they receive makeovers, perfecting them all as close as possible to the Divine consciousness necessary to stand before the Wizard of Oz — symbolically representing God at this point. The Wizard comes across as cruel, rude and unwise. The Wizard is in fact a stand-in for the Old Testament personal God of the Christians and the Jews, the power figure used by religion to keep the masses in spiritual darkness: Jehovah or Yahweh. It is later discovered that the Wizard is a humbug, a charlatan, who scares people into worshipping his Wizard. He surely could not help the characters complete their quest. If you read literature of Mystery schools, this point of view towards Christianity is constantly expressed.
After all is said and done, the brains, the heart and the courage needed to complete Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tinman and Lion’s quests were found within each one of them. As above, so below. All that is needed lies within. Mystery Schools have always taught their students that one must rely on oneself to obtain salvation (Knowledge of the Divine Spark within). Throughout the story Dorothy’s dog Toto represents her “inner voice”; her intuition … The inner Christ. Remember, the Kingdom of God/Heaven is "within you."
The fake Wizard invites Dorothy into his balloon to go back to Kansas, her final destination. She however follows Toto (her intuition) and gets out of the balloon, which represents the empty promises of many organized religions. This leads to her ultimate revelation and, with the help of the Good Witch of the North (her Divine guide), she finally understands: everything she ever wanted could be found “in her own backyard”.
In order to obtain illumination, Dorothy had to vanquish the wicked witches of the East and the West – who were forming an evil horizontal axis: the material world. She was wise in listening to the advice of the good witches of the North and South – the vertical axis: the spiritual dimension. God meets man - as above, so below.
Once she is back home, Dorothy awakens from her sleep in her bed, surrounded by her family. She tries to tell the unenlightened people what she experienced, and they all laugh. Anyone who’s ever tried to tell someone something they weren’t ready for will understand this feeling.
At the end of the story, Dorothy upon waking up in Kansas, has successfully combined her physical and spiritual Life. She is now comfortable being herself again and, despite her family not really believing the details of her quest, she can finally say “There is no place like home”.
Just a thought ...
~Justin Taylor. ORDM.