E Pluribus Unum
“Out of the Many…the ONE”
These words are molded onto the backside of our Lincoln Cent.
They are also words which express the Mystical Vision of American Poet, Walt Whitman.
Walt, a Man of Wit
Whitman, as is well known, held President Lincoln in the highest regard.
Now, scholarship is known for its capacity to eat through the white wash of grammar school mythologies, ripping through redactive reads on the all too human nature of all too human humans. Lincoln is no exception and this venerated President has been “revealed” by modern historians as another repugnant politician. The man who is famed for the Emancipation Proclamation is now also known for his connections to the hangings of the Santee Sioux in Minnesota.
How, then, shall we see him?
Our answer is quite simple.
Through the eyes of Walt Whitman.
Whitman was much more than a poet of nature and sensuality to be defined by the words “Body Electric,” remembered by a beard spraying outward like some white waterfall (although the beard is, admittedly, an impressive one).
His Canadian Disciple, Richard Maurice Bucke, saw him as the Embodiment of Cosmic Consciousness. Don’t those two words sound so “New Agey?” They may appear less so if we can imagine Bucke using the term in the late 1800’s.
In my view, Bucke was a predecessor to Joseph Campbell with his book titled…”Cosmic Consciousness.” Anyone who reads this volume will find his commentary and conclusions limited. But if that same reader considers that this was written ere the 1900’s had dawned, they may well be astounded at the paintstaking and passionate effort of this man to invesitgate the nature of the Enlightenment Experience. He was anticipatory of Crowley’s “Scientific Illuminism” and his study was as personal as it was an attempt at Objective Investigation.
Bucke treats of everyone from Plotinus to St. Paul. He tabulates and analyzes, squints and scrutinizes. You can feel his hunger for the “Core” of some vast awakening power in the human experience.
He ultimately comes to the conclusion that Walt Whitman leads the pack through history and is the most perfect example of “Faculty X” realized.
My own introduction to Bucke was not through his Magnum Opus but rather a curious collection of letters written to his family and friends (collected in the volume “Medical Mystic” by Artem Lozynsky). These missives swayed this writer enough to procure “Leaves of Grass,” treating it as a Bible. For a brief moment, I posted flyers at local libraries in an effort to start a Whitman based journal that would never be.
The point is: Bucke aptly assessed Whitman’s Vision as one expressing “E Pluribus Unum.” He also saw that this same Vision is no different from the One in the Many.
R.M. Bucke-Alienologist of the Bodhicitta and Walt Whitman look-alike
Years later, another Canadian, one Charles Stansfeld Jones, would identify with this same complex through his personal Magical Motto in Crowley’s A.A., “Unus in Omnibus, “One in All.” These initials “V.I.O.” would be extended into a mystical palindrome: “V.I.O.O.I.V.”
Yes, he walked around naked in Vancouver and got thrown in jail. He was also able to see, in every coin, a direct message from GOD, speaking to the Heart of the Soul
With regards to any historical personage, we are bound to find our body of knowledge impacted by new discoveries we’d fain fit into the present picture yet cannot. Even the sum of gathered facts to date must be apprehended by our imagination, slanted into our value systems, cast against our understanding of the world.
We are, in essence, ever in peril of losing our vision.
This may be why the Danish philosopher, Soren Kierkegaard, reacted vehemently against the idea of the “Historical Jesus.” Kierkegaard said that the closer we got to this Historical “Reality,” the further we departed from the immanent presence of the Living Christ.
They called him “The Melancholy Dane” but Soren K was smiling when he wrote of the Teleological Suspension of the Numismatic
HOW can we know this “immanent presence?”
In Kierkegaard’s view (which I agree with), it can’t be by weighing it against the “Historical Record.” After all (to quote Voltaire) “History is a pack of tricks played by the dead upon the living.” If we’re seeking Christ, we don’t really want to fall for a “pack of tricks,” do we? And for Bucke, Whitman WAS Christ.
For Whitman, Lincoln was the embodiment of Demoncracy, the “V.I.O.O.I.V.”
It should go without saying that, for Whitman, Democracy was not about politics. The word represented a Mystical Vision. And this Vision is one toward which Numisgnosis tends.
Lincoln, on your Contact Coin, is LINK IN, President (Precedent) of the Work. You don’t need to spy a “Double Ear” to HEAR or a “Double Die” to open the Third Eye.
It’s been said that in Thelema there are Two Trials, that of the Angel and that of the Abyss. Both are handled in your loose change if done so with the Hand of Glory.
What the Contact Coin does to your digits
All of this is so simple and humble and easy. Whitman, in his later life, was known to eschew any tedious talk around religion and philosophy, preferring to speak of fishing, the weather or some such commonplace conversation. Bucke craved the “deep interview” but tip toed around them while being touched by the Light he felt in the Presence of the Master.
Well, they’re all dead now. Walt, Richard, Soren, Little Eddie (that would be Mr. Crowley to you). You can’t get ’em on the line unless you want to Ouija and that’s a crap shoot (have wet wipes ready).
But you CAN get a coin into your hand and you CAN “Link In.”
And you CAN behold the Vision of E Pluribus Unum.
Numisgnostic Coinologic Convergence Field-screenshot from NUMIS, a Corrosion Corp virtual reality video game in development for the use of Field Agents upping the ante in their esoteric explorations along the Venusian Ray