top of page

Gladiator Unmasked II

“What we do in life echoes in eternity.” In this, Part 2 of our series unmasking the film Gladiator, we go deeper into those echoes in eternity which shed light—on the orders given and battles won in Germania, the actions taken and blood spilled in the sands of the coliseum, and the lies told and scrolls written in the Senate—casting shadows on the dust of Rome. To know this in life is to give back Rome her True Self. These are the core esoteric teaching masked within the modern-day multi-Oscar-winning classic Gladiator, written by David Franzoni, revised by John Logan, directed by Ridley Scott, and starring Russell Crowe. In all humility by the Grace of knowledge bestowed on us from above, we will now continue unmasking these secret teachings, in the hopes that they may assist all who long to serve their One True Emperor and earn the right to return home.

Please note: all quotes from the Gladiator film sourced from:

Any/all other quotes, graphics, artwork, video are cited accordingly, where available. WARNING: This article CONTAINS SPOILERS…and EPIPHANIES.


The Hero’s Greatest Journey

To begin to comprehend the nature of Gladiator, it is only fitting that we consider Maximus’s journey. We will not dwell on Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey, nor will we be mapping Gladiator onto the 12 stages. Since every story fits that monotype anyway, we will, as mentioned, use Kabbalah as our framework to delve deeper into the esoteric knowledge of the film. To have Campbell’s framework in our minds is useful, however, and we offer this wonderful short animation as a quick refresher to help prepare us for the deeper plunge:

<p><a href=”″>The Hero’s Journey</a> from <a href=”″>Iskander Krayenbosch</a> on <a href=””>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Maximus is the hero of Gladiator and by far the most travelled character—the most journeyed. His travels are pinnacle to the story and also to the development of his character. Incidentally, the Latin roots of “travels” is related to travails, that is, difficult labours—struggles, tests and works. (An experienced or accomplished worker was known as a journeyman). But we are not talking about some unremarkable worker here, we are talking about Maximus—the “greatest” or “largest.” So his travails, like the Twelve Labours of Hercules, are the greatest of labours, the largest of quests, and as it so happens, offers the potential for the greatest of transformations.

Esoterically speaking, there is no greater journey than the quest to awaken the consciousness and restore one’s True Self. The Twelve Labours of Hercules are not surprisingly all about the journey of awakening. By following Maximus’s journey by mapping the world he travels/travails in onto the Tree of Life, what these locations symbolize and signify will emerge as a matter of course. Not only that, the places themselves and the interactions of characters taking place therein will reveal valuable insight into the nature of ourselves in microcosm and the very nature of reality itself. But don’t take these words at face value! Let’s begin our own journey through the mythical/historical Roman Empire of Gladiator and you can see for yourself what lies behind the mask.

Dante’s Ladder

Wait, what!? Talk about non-sequiturs! What does Dante have to do with taking a journey through The Tree of Life, let alone Gladiator? A lot as it turns out. In this next part we will be looking at Maximus’s travels / travails in more or less chronological order as he takes them in the film. We do this to retrace his steps and energize our active imagination, dial up the potential for catharsis, and turn Maximus’s experience into our own shared journey, in an albeit limited way. As a matter of course, we will be “jumping around” the Tree of Life quite a bit, as we shall soon see. As in Dante’s Divine Comedy, another supremely esoteric text, the heroes travel via ladder from the earth to the heavens, down to hell, and back again. One immediately begins to understand the limitations of Joseph Campbell’s work in terms of archetypes, however powerful in its universality. His hero’s journey posits a universal chronological map of storytelling. Kabbalah offers a practical, functional esoteric map, independent of Campbell’s framework. The two are in no way, shape, or form incompatible. And as it turns out, they contain and are contained by each other. Since the hero’s journey is cyclical in nature, there is a departure, adventure, discovery, and return a changed person. This exact same process takes place on the Tree of Life and in the Divine Comedy, but the departure is a DESCENT, and the return is an ASCENT. The “changed person,” the hero, descends into the depths of hell to face his/her demons (slaying the dragon, recovering the treasure, restoring the kingdom). Conquering his own demons is the means whereby the hero ascends—returns home—a true hero, a changed person.

Still, in the strictest terms, we mustn’t allow our minds to get hung up on the fact that Maximus’s journey doesn’t appear to proceed smoothly in sequence from one sephiroth to another in that descent and ascent. As we shall see later, the symbol of Mercury and the Tree of Life are hidden amongst the symbols on his armour. Mercury, the messenger of the gods can obviously move from the high heavens to the deepest hells and back at will…up and down Dante’s Ladder. That’s why the element mercury is also called quicksilver. In Norse mythology, Mercury is depicted as a squirrel, running up and down the Great Tree Yggdrasil (The Norse Tree of Life). And we know how quickly and easily squirrels get up, down, and around any tree. In other words, no matter where we are physically, we are always also on a completely different plane of existence esoterically speaking—emotionally, mentally, causally, consciously, and beyond. Although we may embark on our hero’s journey, a part of us always remains bound to our home; and we receive messages, signs, guidance, calling through that connection; via our inner Mercury. This fact is shown to us at the very beginning of the film, where we pick up on Maximus’s hero’s journey which has been going on now for many years.

Home (Da’ath; Gnosis)

Gladiator begins with Maximus imagining himself walking through the wheat fields of his home in Trujillo, Spain. As this is a memory based on direct experience, it means at that moment, in his conscious imagination his psyche is in Da’ath, Gnosis…experiential knowledge. To exist in experiential knowledge is, in many ways, our home. Religare, the Latin root of religion means union with divinity. It is synonymous with the Sanskrit root of yoga, yug, which also means union with divinity. To be home is to be living at one with all we are. Home is where we are one with our Divine Family, and this is absolutely the case for Maximus as well. We will hear more of his home later: the soil, his wife’s hair, his son who teases the ponies. In a blink of an eye, we discover that Maximus has snuck this little daydream for himself, this brief heavenly repose, while in fact he stands amidst the harsh, cruel, dark, and brutal reality of the “freezing mud” of the physical plane, where he is about to “prove his valour once again…hopefully for the last time.”

Germania (Malkuth; Physical Body)

As Maximus’s awareness leaves conscious contemplation of home and returns to the present moment, he once again finds himself in Germania, Malkuth on The Tree of Life, where he is about to face what he believes to be his final battle before earning the right to return home. Here he is very much in his physical body. And his Germanic opponents, a band of fierce and determined Barbarians represents a mirror of the forces led by Maximus. We finally get around to the meaning of the quote we opened Gladiator Unmasked Part I with ages ago:

QUINTUS: “People should know when they’re conquered.” MAXIMUS: “Would you Quintus? Would I?”

Maximus is intimating here that were the tables turned, neither he nor Quintus, if they are honest with themselves, would act any differently than their fierce opponents who just returned the Roman envoy without his head. The two armies are the same, yet very different. The Roman legion functions as a well-oiled machine. Efficient, sophisticated, experienced, brutal, and “lean and hungry.” In comparison, the Germanic force is the typical barbarian fare: fearless, desperate, rallying around an extraordinarily large and powerful leader. As the battle unfolds, we see how the disciplined forces within the physical body (specifically the motor centre) can overcome the wild, animal passions of the primitive, instinctive centre. (Click here to learn more about the three brains and the five centres of the human machine.) We need only witness a street brawl between a master martial artist and a bunch of street punks untrained in the arts of hand to hand combat, to see how a trained motor-instinctive centre trumps wild, passionate one.

But this is an army which is led by Maximus. And as we know from Part I, Maximus represents Tipereth, the Causal Body, the human soul and the seat of willpower. The Roman forces are under his command. The legions are loyal to Maximus. It is willpower which brings discipline to the physical body, and it is willpower applied to the physical body which can defeat the wild, animal desires of an undisciplined physical body.

Caravan (Yesod; Vital Body; Sexual Force)

Having been summoned by Marcus Aurelius, Commodus and his sister Lucilla have a short scene together in an opulent caravan. Here we see the first signs of Commodus’s desire for his father’s throne, as the two speculate on the impending death of their father. We also see how intimate Commodus is with his sister, who quips, “Peace, Commodus. After two weeks on the road your incessant scheming is hurting my head.” This is the first sign that Commodus, who will emerge as the villain of our story, represents the ego. He affects and attempts to manipulate those around him, just as the ego does. Lucilla is the feminine energy or Divine Mother Kundalini as it exists within Yesod, the 9th Sphere: the vital body…sexual energy. She is obviously related with light (Lucilla – Luci – Light). In this scene it is not yet clear she is under the influence of Commodus (ego), but she is bothered enough by him to get a headache (which is the cliché excuse when a woman wants to refuse the sexual advances of a man, suggesting that Commodus’s advances are sexual advances).

The ego fornicates with us in our various bodies: physical, vital, emotional, and mental. That is how it steals our energy and influences us—through intimate (and incestuous) scheming for its own ends. To gain power it must take it from those who have it. That this scene represents Yesod, and Lucilla sexuality, is hammered home when she says, “For now, the first thing I shall do is have a hot bath,” symbolizing the fires and waters of sexuality; a pretty obvious allegorical reference that Lucilla is the sexual force of Yesod.

And this force is in motion. It has left the confines of the palace, and has been summoned by the emperor to Germania—the physical body. The ego-mind can interpret this a number of ways: is it the Kundalini rising the spinal column toward the Innermost Being? Or is it the Kundalini awakening and flowing through the physical body, as we’ve all experienced in one form or another during sexual arousal with a partner. Of course, if we feel into it consciously, and/or use our creative imagination to visualise the process of Sexual Alchemy, we know it is both! The sexual energy is on the move, both in the physical body and upward toward our Innermost and superior dimensions of being. And whenever it flows, the ego is not far behind, tagging along, with its incessant scheming, trying to win our energy to its cause, or simply trying to steal a kiss (which is precisely what Commodus does when they arrive and he hops on his horse).

Caesar’s Tent (Chesed; Atmic Body; Innermost Being)

Here everyone is celebrating and in good spirits. Here we are in the presence of Chesed, the Atmic Body—the Innermost, which creates a space of love, wisdom and compassion. No wonder then that for the most part everything is on the up and up in the scenes taking place under the canopy of Caesar’s tent. Smiles and revelry all around. But all is not quite right in the world, and the first signs appear as Maximus seems to have trouble washing the blood from his hands in a bowl of rose-petal-laden water.

Maximus washes his hands in rosewater. Source:

Roses are, of course, love. Love heals all wounds, including those left on the psyche of a man who has just led the slaughter of hundreds of men in the name of conquest and the glory of Rome. Roses are magical flowers with powerful elementals which happily serve to flood our immediate surroundings and psyche with love and rid our space and ourselves of negative entities which may be clinging to us as the blood of the fallen cling to Maximus.

QUINTUS: General! MAXIMUS: Still alive?QUINTUS: Still alive. MAXIMUS: The gods must have a sense of humour. QUINTUS: The gods must love you. VALERIUS: Back to your barracks, General, or to Rome? MAXIMUS: Home. The wife, the son, the harvest. QUINTUS: Maximus the farmer. I still have trouble imagining that. MAXIMUS: You know, Quintus, dirt cleans off a lot easier than blood.

Here we see the wisdom of the human soul: the gods have a sense of humour. Who are we to take ourselves so seriously all the time?

We could take Quintus’s reply just a figure of speech or trite remark, but we would be missing the key word: must. It is absolutely true that the Innermost must love the human soul and the person within whom rests its full potential. The Monad is not truly complete without it, our Human Soul. The Innermost relies on our cooperation and participation, and that point is made abundantly clear again soon.

Maximus states the obvious: he wants to return home. Who doesn’t? Who wouldn’t? If you are here, now, wading through all these words in search of knowledge or wisdom, you most certainly feel the push/pull in your heart to do just that…to return to where your Divine Mother and her son await you with open arms.

COMMODUS: [Making introductions.] Senator Gaius, Senator Falco. Beware of Gaius, he will pour honeyed potion in your ear and you will wake up saying Republic! Republic! GAIUS: Well, Rome WAS founded as a Republic. COMMODUS: Yes and in a republic, the senate has the power. But Senator Gaius is not influenced by that, of course. FALCO: Where do you stand General, Emperor or Senate? MAXIMUS: A soldier has the advantage of being able to look his enemy in the eye, Senator. GAIUS: You know, with an army behind you, you could become extremely political. COMMODUS: I warned you, but I shall save you. Senators. [He pulls Maximus away and they leave the Senators. Commodus continues his conversation with Maximus.] I’m going to need good men like you. MAXIMUS: [Cautiously asking] How may I serve you, Highness? COMMODUS: You are a man who knows what it is to command. You give your orders, the orders are obeyed, and the battle is won. But these senators, they scheme and squabble and flatter and deceive. Maximus we must save Rome from the politicians. [Glancing over to where Marcus is and back to Maximus.] Can I count on you, when the time comes?

This is a most revealing exchange. Commodus here warns us that a Senator (one of the many voices in our head, chosen by the people to speak for the people) will essentially poison our mind with a hypnotic message which, although leaving a sweet taste in our mouth, will nonetheless put our consciousness to sleep and we will become fanatical zombies of the state, awakening only long enough to shout our support in favour of the mind’s rule. Commodus furthers his cause by pointing out what is at best hypocrisy and at worst outright conflict of interest. When pressed on the matter, Maximus demonstrates Thelema, willpower (in this case restraint), and notes that dealing with the physical world (as a soldier), one more or less gets to see things fairly simply and straightforwardly, implying that the mind (senators) are more apt to stab us in the back than face us plainly and directly. The eyes are the mirrors to the soul, insinuating the mind (the Senate) has no soul. And how does the mind reply? Well, since you have all this willpower, you could be very useful to us (the mind).

Willpower, when forced through the mind can have devastating results. Even without ill-will coming into play, the will to power through the mind is responsible for so many abuses in this day and age. In recent years the idea of intention has arisen in the New Age movement which has greatly obscured the picture. In the past we simply said the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Now it seems intentions are everywhere, and the sole focus of many who claim to be spiritual aspirants. Without getting too side-tracked. The New Age obsession with intention probably stems from the late Dr. Wayne Dyer’s book and PBS program, The Power of Intention. The grave error of this New Age guru’s work was his choice of words. He essentially renamed the Will of our Innermost Being, God’s Will, intention. It is the New Age’s mania to eliminate all separation, and believe we are one and the same as our Innermost Being. This, of course, is a gross oversimplification and outright denial of the facts. And so despite Dyer’s insistence that intention is not something you think up, but rather a phenomenon you connect to, a whole generation of New Agers have twisted and corrupted his teachings, and it has become a mantra of the Black Lodge, who in no way, shape, or form preach connecting to the universal intention, God’s Intention (Will), as Wayne Dyer did. Rather, they incite aspirants to use their intentions to manifest what they want.

As always, the ego pipes in and says “I told you so.” Isn’t that always the way? Isn’t the ego the first one to claim it was right, superior, know-it-all, intuitive, lucky, wise, intelligent, “the oracle,” etc? Doesn’t it make you feel good to have that moment of validation? What’s going on there? I dunno…but it’s not a rhetorical question. It’s something to keep an eye out for, pay attention to the next time it comes up. Why does it feel so good to be right?

The ego follows up in this case with “I will save you.” Again, is not the ego the voice of reason, the one who is “looking out for us;” looking out for our best interests? Doesn’t the ego pull out the old “survival instincts” card whenever we are met with some challenge? Isn’t it quick to justify its reactions of an angry, fearful, greedy, or proud nature as being merely acts of survival? Isn’t it just “looking out for number one?” Yes indeed, the ego sees itself as our saviour.

Next Commodus has a private moment with Maximus in which he explains how “these senators, they scheme and squabble and flatter and deceive.” And if we observe our minds, we will see that very often there will be some sort of push/pull taking place. Be it something we just can’t let slide, a so-called pressing matter which constantly draws our attention to it until we take action, or a thousand contradictions running through our head. If we’ve witnessed a debate, a session of parliament, an online discussion forum, a comment section of a YouTube video, a Facebook feed, we know where all that behaviour originates from—the ego-mind. And yet, ironically, it is the ego which pulls us aside and says “Maximus we must save Rome from the politicians. Can I count on you, when the time comes?”

Here we see the potential for ill will; willpower under the influence/control of the ego. After accusing them of scheming, squabbling, and deception, Commodus cleverly and blatantly stabs the whole mechanism of the senate in the back. The hypocrisy of ego knows no bounds. But we see how the ego knows where to go fishing for real power. It knows that having influence over the mind—making the conscious mind subconscious—is one thing, but gaining the allegiance of he who commands the loyalty of the army? If the ego can influence our willpower, then it can rule the whole empire with impunity. And so Commodus asks of Maximus what he will ask for again later after Marcus Aurelius’s death…Maximus’s allegiance.

But before we get to that, we have our final scenes with Marcus Aurelius.

The Dream that was Rome (Chokmah; The Son; The Christ)

Here we begin to make a departure from the convention followed so far. Even though in the film we do not yet visit Rome, we are taken on a journey of imagination in Marcus Aurelius’s tent. We will hear of the dream that was Rome, and metaphysically this dream is as intimately related to our Innermost Atman as the dream that was Rome is to Marcus Aurelius.

MARCUS: Tell me again Maximus, why are we here? MAXIMUS: For the glory of the empire, Sire. MARCUS: Ah yes, ah yes. I remember. You see that map, Maximus? That is the world which I created. For 25 years, I have conquered, spilt blood, expanded the empire. Since I became Caesar I have known four years without war – four years of peace in 20. And for what? I brought the sword, nothing more.

Here we see the Innermost admitting his world is fallen; and that in his efforts to conduct the affairs of the Empire, he neglected its very heart and soul. He now seeks to remedy that.

MAXIMUS: I have seen much of the rest of the world. It is brutal and cruel and dark. Rome is the light. MARCUS: Yet you have never been there. You have not seen what it has become. I am dying, Maximus. When a man sees his end he wants to know that there has been some purpose to his life. How will the world speak my name in years to come? Will I be known as the philosopher, the warrior, the tyrant.

On the surface this appears to be an exposition on a broken old man in search of a legacy. But esoterically, it is the realization that in today’s world many judge God as the stuff of mere philosophy, at best an excuse for radical extremists to wage holy wars, and at worst a divine tyrant which allows terrible things to happen in the world. None of these are the case, and so Caesar is looking to repair the mind’s false judgements (since the mind can only think in past or future—thus history and legacy are important).

MARCUS (CONT’D): Or will I be remembered as the Emperor who gave Rome back her true self? There was once a dream that was Rome, you could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish. It was so fragile and I fear that it will not survive the winter. Maximus, let us whisper now. Together, you and I.

The Still Soft Voice of our Innermost is but a whisper. Intuition. It does not speak to us or for us as the voices in our head do (the scheming, squabbling Senators). And the dream of Rome whispered to us is fragile. Nonetheless, that dream is the restoration of Rome’s true self…our True Self.

Later we catch a visual representation of this “dream,” when Commodus rides in “like a conquering hero.”

Commodus enters Rome “like a conquering hero.” Source:

But to see “the dream that was Rome” realized, Marcus Aurelius must ask “one more duty” of Maximus before he goes home…

MARCUS: I want you to become the protector of Rome after I die. I will empower you, to one end alone, to give power back to the people of Rome and end the corruption that has crippled it. [Shock and bewilderment overcome Maximus. He tries to keep from displaying these feelings. Hearing no response, Marcus continues.] Will you accept this great honour that I have offered? MAXIMUS: With all my heart, no. MARCUS: [Tenderly holding Maximus’ head with both hands]: Maximus, that is why it must be you. MAXIMUS: But surely a prefect, a senator, somebody who knows the city, who understands her politics…. MARCUS: But you have not been corrupted by her politics. MAXIMUS: And Commodus? MARCUS: Commodus is not a moral man, you have known that since you were young. Commodus cannot rule. He must not rule. You are the son that I should have had.

Commodus is the false self; a representation of the corruption which has befallen Rome. Maximus is the son The Innermost “should have had,” meaning the human soul, who, by virtue of Maximus’s initial refusal of “this great honour” is not yet awake. Maximus at this moment is still caught up in his concept of what Rome is, turning to a “prefect, a senator, somebody who knows the city, who understands her politics,” (i.e. the mind) for answers. But Marcus Aurelius knows “it must be [Maximus].” He is the son he should have had, and the only one who can wield the power to give back to the people of Rome (the Consciousness) what is rightfully theirs.

There is a deeper significance to this phrase, “you are the son I should have had,” again referencing Chokmah, The Son, The Christ. Our Innermost Being needs the Human Soul to incarnate the Christ. Marcus Aurelius is DYING. This is a Christic allegory: the phoenix which dies is reborn from the flames; but those flames must be stoked and channelled with WILLPOWER—Maximus—so that Divine Mother Kundalini can reunite with her husband the Holy Spirit and give birth to the Christ inside of us…so Rome can be given back her True Self…so the Dream that was Rome can be realised. “Commodus is not a moral man,” and the ego cannot be trusted with this sacred duty. The Being must rely on the Human Soul, who commands the loyalty of the army; who, when asked if he accepts this great honour replies “with all my heart, no.” This echoes the words of the humble and Human Rabbi of Galilea—Jesus Christ—who asks for this cup to pass from him. The Human Soul and the Innermost are one; the process of death and rebirth is a process they—along with the Divine Soul—all take together. This lower trinity is called The Monad.

Of course, Marcus Aurelius’s plans for Maximus and Rome are temporarily foiled by “his failure as a father.” Since Commodus is the ego, and ego is the accumulation of all our past mistakes, Commodus is not the son he Marcus should have had, but the son he actually had, “who is not a moral man,” and is a symbol of the false self. This false self seeks the glory of Rome for itself. And true to form, a few scenes later, Commodus will do just that, entering Rome “like a conquering hero.”

GRACCHUS: He enters Rome like a conquering hero. But what has he conquered? FALCO: Give him time. He’s young. I think he could do very well. GRACCHUS: For Rome or for you?

And here we see two senators, representing the mind, expressing two very different opinions on the ego. We see this all the time amongst New Agers. There are many articles and books expounding the necessity of ego, awakening through ego, taming the ego, working with the ego, etc. Considering all these theories and beliefs come from ego-mind, they are the voice of Falco, who thinks the ego could do very well—for him, as Gracchus implies. Yes, it is true we cannot trust the ego-mind, but we should pay attention to it. We never know when we receive a message through our heart-mind. Gracchus, as we later learn is that “one senator above all…who has dedicated his life to Rome.”

Trujillo, Spain (Da’ath; Gnosis)

Despite having “never been there,” Maximus is well aware of ‘The Dream that was Rome,’ for he says “Rome is the Light.” Naïve and unaware of the corruption, the Emperor explains to him his one more duty. But before he does, they “whisper together” some more, this time about Maximus’s “dream.”

MARCUS: “You have a son, tell me about your home.” MAXIMUS: My house is in the hills above Trujillo. Very simple place, pink stones that warm in the sun. Kitchen garden that smells of herbs in the day, jasmine in the evening. Through the gate is a giant poplar. Figs, apples, pears. The soil, Marcus, black …black like my wife’s hair. Grapes on the south slopes, olives on the north. Wild ponies play near the house, they tease my son. He wants to be one of them.

The imagery here is striking and unquestionable. Through the gate is a giant poplar, which is a member of the Populus genus…as in populace in macrocosm, made up of people in microcosm: persons…human beings. Through the gate of Yesod (the 4th dimension, sexuality) is the entrance of the Tree of Life. This image is literally backed up by figs, apples, pears, all very sexual fruit (think fig leaves; the apple from the Tree of Knowledge; the pear-shaped woman with child-bearing hips).

Next we have “the soil, Marcus black…black like my wife’s hair” the first audible connection between Marcus Aurelius and Maximus’s wife, linking the Innermost Being to the Akash—the fifth element, the fabric of the universe, and the body of the Divine Mother—which of course is black. His wife, the one he lost, is his Divine Mother, his Solar Feminine Aspect. This is reinforced when Marcus Aurelius says “I envy you, Maximus. It is a good home. Worth fighting for?” This directly relates Maximus’s wife as the wife of Marcus Auralius, who could only “envy him” because he longs for her, and for the “good home” Maximus describes. All this conjures up both images of Eden and Nirvana. Divine Gardens to which the gate is supra-sexuality.

In other words, Maximus’s wife, who is nameless in the film, with whom he has a child, is the Divine Mother, the one ‘envied’ by Marcus Aurelius, the Innermost, whose child is HIS child, and “Rome’s True Self”…the innocent, the pure, the Child of the Divine Mother…the Christ.

Legionnaire’s Camp (Yesod)

After Maximus leaves Caesar’s tent, we have a short scene with Lucilla, who represents Yesod, the vital body, and the sexual force. The sexually charged scene should be proof of that enough. It also establishes the dynamic between willpower and sexuality, and why it is Maximus cannot succumb to the charms of Lucilla.

LUCILLA: What did my father want with you? MAXIMUS: To wish me well before I leave for home. [Again, he turns to leave.] LUCILLA: You are lying. I could always tell when you were lying because you were never good at it. [Maximus looks back at her sharply and approaches.] MAXIMUS: I never acquired your comfort with it. LUCILLA: True. But then you never had to. Life is more simpler for a soldier. Or do you think me heartless? MAXIMUS: I think you have a talent for survival.

The sexual force is, after all, the vital body and concerned with procreation, among other hungers. This “talent for survival” is what the ego (Commodus) will later exploit.

A brief word here on the two sons, Maximus’s unnamed son and Lucius, Lucilla’s son, both of whom are said to be 8. This number is symbolic and very significant. For starters, it is infinity on its side. Next, Chokmah is the eighth sephiroth counting up the Tree of Life from Malkuth (put another way, Chokmah is the second sephiroth; 10-2=8). That is, to give birth to the Christ as a result of being in the physical body and working in the vital body, one ascends eight worlds on the Tree of Life. Both sons are eight, and we will learn later that both are innocent. Thus Lucilla represents the sexual force of Divine Mother Devi Kundalini Shakti in Yesod, essentially Maximus’s corporeal wife and Divine Mother as sexuality, while Maximus’s unnamed wife represents his Innermost Divine Mother as Binah, Divine Mother Devi Kundalini Shakti risen through the spinal column and reunited with her husband the Holy Spirit to give birth to the Christ. Finally, and in no uncertain terms related to all that has been said about the number 8, it is also symbolically representative of the vital energetic channels Ida and Pingala, the two serpents intertwined about the Caduceus of Mercury which form the shape of the number 8; the intertwined masculine and feminine forces combining in Sexual Alchemy, to give rise to the infinite, eternal Christ.

The Arenas (The Astral Plane; 5th Dimension)

The New Age movement is obsessed with the fifth dimension. Kabbalistically speaking, the fifth dimension consists of Netzach and Hod (the Astral and Mental worlds; within us, they are the emotional and mental bodies). At best, the New Age movement leaves its explanation at that. This is not the whole story, however.

The Astral Plane is divided into two “levels,” which is a gross oversimplification of matters. There is what’s known as the LUNAR Astral Plane (the LOWER fifth dimension), and the SOLAR Astral Plane (the UPPER fifth dimension).. The lower fifth is also known as Klipoth…psychological hell…and is further divided into 10 levels, mirroring the whole of the Tree of Life, only in reverse.

Image of Tree of Life; Credit:

This topic is too vast to do justice here and now. Suffice it to say, whether we are in the infra fifth dimensional plane or the supra dimensional plane depends upon whether our astral body (the vehicle for travelling in the astral plane) is lunar (mechanical; egoic) or solar (conscious). Many mistaken aspirants erroneously believe they are awakened masters because they can astral project. Many who practice black magic in ignorance of the harm they are doing themselves and others believe the same. What many don’t realize, because they are hypnotized by ego, is that they are actually in the lunar astral plane.

When we dream, we all enter the lunar astral plane. Our consciousness is sound asleep, and although it is possible to dream in the Solar Astral Plane, they are rare. The deeper we venture into hell, the scarier the dream becomes. Just because we awake in that dream (lucid dream) does not mean we’ve ascended from hell. It simply means our consciousness is now awake—at the same level as before. In other words, to be in the Solar Astral or Lunar Astral has nothing to do with being asleep or lucid. That is a false assumption of ego-mind. The nature of subtler dimensions of reality is far more nuanced than any sort of notions we have which come from mechanical nature.

In the lunar astral plane, weak and self-delusional unfortunates encounter all forms of phenomenon and believe what they are seeing is objective reality. But it is not. They are witnessing a wholly subjective infernal dimension which reflects their own weaknesses (egos). Very often they see what they WANT to see, at least subconsciously. There, so-called “ascended masters” and “archangels” appear to them, proclaiming, “I am the Master so-and-so” or “I am the archangel such-and-such” and “I have chosen YOU to be my voice in the world! You will be my personal vessel, a spiritualist, a great channeller! Through you I will give my teaching to the world and all will love and adore you for it! Together, we will awaken souls and I will teach you the ancient secrets of powerful magic,” you get the idea. Without any discipline and authentic esoteric study, such self-styled mystics / occultists are easy prey for what are, in fact, powerful BLACK SORCERERS, and/or full-fledged awakened DEMONS masquerading as masters, Angels, gods, etc. They target those spiritual aspirants who are susceptible to mystic pride, knowing full-well that they can be seduced into committing all manner of spiritual crimes against Divine Nature and the Great Law (including channeling), merely by promising them powers, fame, fortune, and the like.

The Internet and New Age bookstores are filled with volumes written by these so-called “messengers of the gods,” expounding what they believe wholeheartedly to be “the word of God” (or at the very least what amounts to authentic teachings). And sure enough, the most dangerous and effective misinformation / disinformation by the Black Lodge is 85-95% correct. It’s the last five to fifteen percent which twists and turns the whole of the rest of the teachings upside down, and ensures anyone following said messenger will awaken negatively, believing they are awakening a master…in fact, they will be awakening as a black magician, a sorcerer, a demon.

As for the so-called “messengers,” they will be kept blissfully ignorant of their role as accomplices in the tenebrous crimes of the Black Brotherhood, until their death and/or future lifetime, when they will have to pay the karmic price for their crime of chanelling which will be demonic possession. Since channeling is the is act of forcing an entity into one’s physical body against its will, or allowing an entity to take control of one’s body at it’s will, both involve the possession, for a time, of the spiritualist. This is a violation; forcing Beings to endure / experience tremendous suffering against their will. The poetic justice for such a crime is that the channeller will live a future life possessed by a tenebrous entity. Such a person will suffer epileptic seizures and/or numerous other symptoms on the so-called autism spectrum—bipolar, multiple personalities, schizophrenia, what are these but multiple entities occupying one physical body? Entities which suffer a lot and cause a lot of suffering in their fight for control of said body.

Of course, these poor ignorant wretches may never know they have sold their soul to the Black Brotherhood. And the truth is they don’t want to know! We have confronted these so-called “messengers” in the past, and it is clear they are the living embodiment of “ignorance is bliss.” They have seen what they have seen in what they think is the astral plane, and like Fox Mulder says in the X-Files, they WANT TO BELIEVE. They are consumed by their mystic pride: by the fame and adulation of an adoring New Age “mob”, and the idea that THEY were hand-picked; they must be on their way to greatness.

THE TEST: If you ever astral project (lucid dream) and encounter an entity claiming to be this-or-that Master, Angel, etc. Simply ask them their opinion on fornication (the orgasm). Lust is the Harlot of Babylon and the Evil Queen of all egos. She is the brood mother of Aliens. She is the Borg Queen in Star Trek. Demons and Black Magicians are hell-bound by their very nature to promote and uphold and spread their dark brotherhood’s codex of lust. They are incapable of speaking against lust. They are programmed to promote fornication and the orgasm. If you test them with this simple question of “should I seek sensory pleasures and occult powers through fornication via orgasm?” they CANNOT SAY “NO.” Whereas any true member of The White Lodge will reveal to you the truth about fornication, orgasm, and if you humbly request it, may even give you lessons on the correct practice of Sexual Alchemy. What they will not do is ask you to channel.

As an aside, if you meet your own Innermost Being, comprehend that doing His Will—following the Still Soft Voice in your hear; your Intuition—is not channelling! We have heard New Agers referring to “channeling their higher self.” This is just plain stupid. Ignorance is no excuse for using inappropriate language. Like Wayne Dyer who chose the word intention instead of calling it what it was—the Will of God—by saying we channel that Will is opening the door for ego-minds to twist and corrupt the teachings by saying: “if it’s okay to channel God, it’s okay to channel angels, masters, spirits, etc.” But that is a boldface lie based on half-truths and ignorance which, unfortunately, is the very definition of the New Age movement.

The White Brotherhood DOES NOT disseminate teachings through “channellers.” Channeling is a spiritual crime. How do we know this? Because Masters, Ascended Masters, Angels, et al are LOVE, and they SACRIFICE for humanity. They REINCARNATE. They choose to suffer a mortal life for our sake and the sake of the end of suffering of all beings. In metaphysical/symbolic terms they embody a child—a son or daughter of God, a vessel, a vehicle for them to enter into Malkuth (Germania) and live a life of service, sacrifice and suffering. If you sense a “Being” speaking through you, guess what…that’s YOUR INNERMOST MASTER. But make no mistake, YOU are not a master yet! You are just a vehicle, a vessel, a 3D spacesuit complete with a personality; a toon, an avatar in a 3D video game. Your Innermost is “the Player;” but you are not “an Avatar” like Jesus, Buddha, etc…not yet, anyway. Why? Because you have not yet died, psychologically. You are still too much “you” and not enough “Your Innermost Being.” You are too much your false self, not enough your True Self. And this distinction is something you must KNOW, experientially. So if you do awaken in the astral (lucid dream) ask to see your Innermost. Speak to him. Whisper, as Marcus Aurelius and Maximus do. Don’t take our word for it. Enter into your own Inner Caesar’s tent and confer with your individuated God about how best to be “the son He should have had” in order to realise the fragile dream that was Rome.

In terms of the film, then, that son is Maximus. He is the Son Marcus Aurelius “should have had.” And sure enough, he begins in Germania, but soon after is betrayed by Commodus (ego), is left for dead, and discovers his wife and child dead. This is another symbol of how the ego “kills” our connection to our Home (Da’ath; Gnosis). Commodus’s killing of Marcus Aurelius, and of Maximus’s unnamed wife and son are symbolic of the ego cutting us off from our Innermost Being and our Divine Mother (and the Essence, the Seed, the offspring of Their Divine Union within us, the Christ, the Son of God). It is after this that he descends into hell (Klipoth, the Lower Fifth Dimension, the Lunar Astral Plane)…

Zucchabar (Lower Astral Body)

Although Maximus survives Commodus’s orders to execute him, he is exhausted and heartbroken at racing home to see the fate of his family and his home. His strength, his willpower is spent. We see him picked up and transported in a surreal dreamlike sequence to the Roman Province of Zucchabar. This is symbolic of the human soul’s descent into the lower fifth dimension. Maximus is delirious with fever, his willpower (Thelma, the Causal Body) is gone, and he “falls” from the Sixth Dimension into the lower fifth dimension—the lunar astral plane.

The same goes for all those poor wretches who go on acid trips, take psychedelic drugs, consume magic mushrooms, et al. They do not project into the astral consciously with willpower, rather they slip into the lunar astral in a fit of delirium. They fail to comprehend that any journey within facilitated by mechanical nature is by definition LUNAR…it is not consciously made, and is thus subject to the whims of mechanical nature, which in us is ego. Sometimes, people are outright attacked in the astral plane by tenebrous entities, demons, etc. Still, they have no notion of the lower astral plane. The failure of the New Age to properly educate and prepare aspirants for making the journey inwards is yet another proof that the Black Lodge has many agents at work leading unsuspecting aspirants down the path of greater suffering, even while believing they are the recipients of great adulation and reward…just like gladiators.

Gladiators are slaves, yet they are revered and adored by the mob. They are the instruments of bloodlust which amuse and excite the masses…they are entertainers. The successful ones who do not die in the arena are treated as champions, given all manner of pleasures (food, wine, women, men, as fits their fancy), and exist in a surreal kind of dimension where they begin to live like kings, so long as they kill. But make no mistake, they are still slaves.

For Maximus, this is the bottom…the hell which he finds himself in. A hell which is surrealistically dressed up as entertainment: action, excitement, emotional rollercoaster, stimulation for the mental and emotional bodies. That stimulation is not conscious, it is mechanical, automatic, REACTIVE.

Now consider the desire expressed by so many to travel in the Astral Plane. The desire to fly; to travel to other planets; to spy on their loved ones; and who knows what else? Do they ask to see themselves as they truly are? Do they ask to see their Innermost? Their Divine Mother? Do they visit the temples of the White Lodge? Do they even know to do any of these things?

Maximus does. At first, he refuses to fight; he has lost his will and seems to want nothing to do with any of his predicament. He is acting in defiance of what is normal for Klipoth.

JUBA: Why don’t you fight, Spaniard? We all have to fight. [Maximus looks at Juba, as he continues to scrape the Legion Mark (SPQR) from his arm with a sharp stone. The pain of his efforts clearly read in his expression.] JUBA: Is that the mark of your gods? [Maximus nods, with a slight sense of humour at the question.] JUBA: Will that not anger them? [Maximus nods again, his smile very wry as he continues to painfully scrape the insignia from his flesh.]

In removing the SPQR tattoo from his arm, Maximus is attempting to eradicate any last vestiges of the infection of Commodus (who is now emperor and therefore the head of the legion). Maximus refuses to be ruled by Commodus, as he demonstrated in Germania, and now is painfully removing the mark of the legion which brands him a servant of ego. And that is, after all, why we descend into hell…to eliminate the ego’s hold over us.

“We all have to fight,” Juba tells Maximus. And it is true. We cannot descend into Klipoth, into our own subconscious mind and inferior heart centre, into the lunar astral plane in a state of naiveté. We must fight for our freedom. We must use the weapons provided to us by our Divine Mother and decapitate our internal adversaries, one by one. This Maximus proves most proficient at. All the while, he refuses to “drink the Kool Aid” of the whole Gladiator mythos. Which frankly rather disgusts him…

He is in the world, but not of it. He is in the gladiatorial ring (the wheel of Samsara), but he knows his true identity. He has fallen down to here, and it means he must do what he must do, but he doesn’t have to become identified with what he is doing. He was a general in the service of Marcus Aurelius, and more importantly, he still serves his Innermost Being, the one True Emperor, and the dream that was Rome. He descends into the lunar astral plane to eliminate the egos attempting to destroy him, but he doesn’t allow himself to be defined by them, nor his place among them.

“I am required to kill so I kill, that is enough.” This line is eerily similar to “it is what it is, and that is all.” A line which, if you are familiar at all with esotericism, is tantamount to “I Am that I Am,” Aheyeh Asher Aheyeh in Hebrew, also known as The Holy Name of God. And the connection between the two is made by Proximo who replies “That’s fine for the provinces but not for Rome.”

Proximo’s Home (Geburah; Buddhic Body; Divine Soul)

Proximo is clearly related to “proximity.” He is Maximus’s mentor; sensei—one who walked before. Like Maximus, he too was a gladiator, a slave. He won his freedom, and was touched on the shoulder by Marcus Aurelis by a rudius (a wooden sword), which was a symbol of his freedom. It is also a phallic symbol (as all swords are). And a wooden sword is even more so (especially if it’s hardwood).

Proximo is our Free Consciousness, Geburah, our Divine Soul. He is one who won his freedom. However, like Maximus, he is entangled in the machinations of the empire and the new found bloodlust of an emperor obsessed with controlling the empire—through the bloodlust of the gladiatorial games. It seems after giving Proximo his freedom, Marcus Aurelius later expelled Proximo and all the gladiators to the provinces…again, we see the banishment from the solar astral plane to the lunar astral plane…but now it is time for Maximus and Proximo to return to where they belong, the Coliseum, the Solar Astral Plane.

The Coliseum (Astral Body)

This is where things might get a little confusing. For as much as the Coliseum is part of Rome, it is in a lower dimension (the fifth). And while in principle it should be Solar, in keeping with “the Glory of Rome” and “Rome is the Light” (as already discussed), the young emperor has called for “150 days of games.” Reduced Kabbalistically, 1+5+0=6 as in “666.” 6 is the inversion of 9, that is, whereas the ninth sphere is Yesod, and 9 represents upright sexuality, 6 represents its inversion, lust, and in the case of Commodus, the bloodlust of the games.

So the Coliseum in Gladiator represents the Solar Astral Body on the verge of becoming Lunar, by the influence of the ego (Commodus). He invites the gladiators to return from the provinces, so the denizens of the lunar astral plane are coming to infiltrate and corrupt the solar astral plane. It happens. Ego infects the Astral Plane, making our experience of it Lunar. We must not allow our ego-mind to prevent our consciousness from comprehending the symbols at work in the film Gladiator. The Solar Astral and Lunar Astral Planes are not physically distinct from one another in a physical sense as their symbols in the film suggest. As we have mentioned, the nature of our interior worlds is far more subtle and nuanced to adhere to spatial laws of physical geography. The Lunar and Solar Astral Planes occupy the same “space;” they are the same, yet different.

This is an excellent opportunity to feel into the symbols being presented here, and abandon any A-type personality traits which may be demanding a more ‘exact explanation’ with ‘clearly defined parameters,’ etc. Like Maximus, who knows that to ascend and return the Glory of Rome, he must cleanse the Astral Plane of what infects it—ego—we must follow our gut instinct and go along with what our consciousness advises us to do. In this case, just run with it. Both the Coliseum and Zucchabar represent the Astral. One represents the Lower Astral, the other the Superior Astral on the verge of becoming like the inferior…unless, that is, the Human Soul (Maximus) and the Consciousness (Proximo) can succeed in helping Maximus win his freedom (and thus free the Coliseum, and by extension all of Rome) from the tyranny of the ego.

The Senate (Mental Body)

Very briefly, the Senate is the mind. This is not too much of a stretch. The Senate is chosen from among the people, to speak for the people. In other words, it is responsible for the voices in our head, and Commodus says as much:

COMMODUS: Who deign to lecture me? LUCILLA: Commodus, the senate has its uses. COMMODUS: What uses? All they do is talk. Talk. …It should have been only me, and you, and Rome. LUCILLA: Don’t even think that, Commodus. There has always been a senate…. COMMODUS: Rome has changed. It takes an Emperor to rule an empire. LUCILLA: Of course, but leave the people their…. COMMODUS: Illusions? LUCILLA: …traditions.

No matter how we slice it, here we see the true nature of the mind. “Talk” and “illusions”…even “traditions.” Lucilla tells Commodus that the senate (mind) has its uses. To this the ego replies “It should have been only me, and you, and Rome,” alluding to ego’s intention of existing only as itself, with the sexual force, and Rome (the whole of the Being). In other words, the ego’s primary goal is LUST—exercising its power through the sexual force (represented here by Lucilla). But Lucilla states there is always a mind, and be they illusions or traditions, these aspects of the mind are useful to the ego to control the people of Rome. Under the rule of an Emperor like Commodus (ego), then, the mind is a useful tool of tyranny and enslavement.

Prison & Palace (Tipereth; Causal Body)

Maximus is a slave. We mustn’t forget that fact. A gladiator, yes, but remember—he DESCENDS into the arena. Descends from where? From the location which best defines a slave… prison. While Maximus is locked up, a slave, Lucilla’s son comes to visit him. Here we see the esoteric symbols on Maximus’s armour unveiled.

LUCIUS: They have good horses in Spain? MAXIMUS: Some of the best. This is Argento. This is Scarto [pointing to his chest armour]. They were my horses. They were taken from me?.

The names Maximus gives to the horses on his armour are often mistranslated in “movie trivia websites” including IMDb. Argento is correctly translated as “silver,” but scarto is mistranslated as “reject.” This is because those doing the translation know nothing about the science of alchemy, and simply plug in the first result Google Translate (or whatever service they call upon) spits out. All nouns in Latin are either masculine or feminine; given the visual cues in Maximus’s armour design, the two horses are equal yet opposing forces.

Silver is one of the seven base metals in alchemy and is often associated with the Moon, which is profoundly feminine. Silver is known to possess feminine qualities and is associated in alchemy with purity (Source: Both the moon and silver reflect the sun’s light; they are passive, feminine in nature. Properly translated, scarto is a masculine noun, whose meaning as it relates to riding horses (remember, Scarto is the name of a horse), means “run-out” or ride-out (Source: ). With a little license, we could say “a charge out on horseback” as in the charge of the light brigade, or indeed, the charge Maximus leads in the opening battle scenes in Germania; the desperate charge he makes in an attempt to return to Spain to save his family. In any case, this noun is masculine and unquestionably represents a very active force in relation to horses. (Even if you do run with “rejected” as the translation, there isn’t much difference between “rejected” and “ejected” as in “ejaculation.” Scarto represents the masculine force no matter which way you look at it).

Scarto and Argenta therefore represent Ida and Pingala, the masculine and feminine channels intertwined about the spinal column; the snakes intertwined around the Staff of Hermes; the Caduceus of Mercury, and the pillars of Jachin and Boaz in the Tree of Life. Not surprisingly then, adorning the armor between the two horses we find a tree, which lies beyond a “temple gate” guarded on each side by a gryphon: mythological beasts with the body and hind legs of a lion and the head, wings and talons of an eagle.

If there is any doubt, dear reader, of the esoteric symbolism in Maximus’s armour, consider also that embossed on the left side of the armour is a woman and her child. The left is the correct position related to both Ida on the Caduceus of Mercury/Staff of Hermes, as well as the feminine pillar on the Tree of Life (Boaz). Now, we can already sense the throngs of fans and skeptics alike loading their DVD’s, searching YouTube for the scene, streaming the film, etc. seeking the answer to the million-dollar question: which side does Maximus point to when he says, “This is Argento. This is Scarto [pointing to his chest armour]?” Seeing him seemingly point to the opposite side, we can already feel the nay-sayers and trolls typing their comments of dismissal, denial, and outright abuse. And they would again be short-sighted, narrow-minded, reactionary, and incorrect.

Ida (Argento) is ALWAYS on the left, and Pingala (Scarto) is always on the right. Since the symbolism on Maximus’s armor is for OUR BENEFIT, not his, it is embossed from our perspective in order to have the intended effect on our consciousness (the same way the Tree of Life is always drawn with Boaz to the left). But someone facing us, pointing to the pillar on their left (which is correct), will appear to be pointing to “the wrong pillar” from our point of view. But in reality, from their point of view they are doing it correctly. You can’t have it both ways simultaneously, that’s just the limits of physical perspective and subjective perception. The reality is the filmmakers got it right on both counts, designing the armor for our point of view, and having Maximus look at it from his point of view, whether they made this decision consciously or not.

That Maximus’s armour is highlighted in this way while he is prison, simply exemplifies how it represents the Causal Body, willpower. For armour, as the bars of a prison, protect as much as they contain. It is also in prison that Maximus’s willpower—Thelma—is best demonstrated. First and foremost, when he is visited by Lucilla, who is also living in a prison (the palace).

LUCILLA: I have been living in a prison of fear since that day. To be unable to mourn your father for fear of your brother. To live in terror every moment of every day, because your son is heir to the throne. Oh, I have wept. MAXIMUS: My son was innocent. LUCILLA: So is mine. Must my son die too before you can trust me? [Maximus releases his hold on her throat]

And with that, we release our hold over you, dear reader. We have covered all the locales of Gladiator, and mapped them successfully onto The Tree of Life. This concludes Part II of Gladiator Unmasked. Now you are free to go and meditate on all you have seen and read here, and we will see you again in the Third and final Part of Gladiator Unmasked. But not yet…not yet.

Now We Are Free

Anol shalom Anol sheh lay konnud de ne um {shaddai} Flavum Nom de leesh Ham de nam um das La um de Flavne…We de ze zu bu We de sooo a ru Un va-a pesh a lay Un vi-I bee Un da la pech ni sa (Aaahh) Un di-I lay na day Un ma la pech a nay Mee di nu ku(Fast tempo, 4 times) La la da pa da le na da na Ve va da pa da le na la dumdaAnol shalom Anol sheh ley kon-nud de ne um. Flavum. Flavum. M-ai shondol-lee Flavu… {Live on…} Lof flesh lay Nof ne Nom de lis Ham de num um dass La um de Flavne… Flay Shom de nomm Ma-lun des Dwondi. Dwwoondi Alas sharum du koos Shaley koot-tum.Healing to me And freely to you from Sol Omnipotens Yellow Wings of Joy Warmth of Day, Sun of Dawn O Sun of Yellow,The Son of Righteousness, Son of Morning Light, Shine high and below! Shine Aeonion! Shine now, O Great I AM! (Aaahh) Shine now, O He Who Was! Shine now, O Great to Come! Now we are Free!(Fast tempo, 4 times) One the One now whom he was to be! And the One by whom we now do all seeHealing to me; Healing to you now freely from Sol: Yellow Yellow For all the world too Yellow Live on Rays below, Come now, Wings of Joy Warmth of Day, Sun of Dawn; The Sun of Yellow, Yellow, Flame by Day From Our Lord [Chrestos], [Chrestos], True Sun of Liberty Healing you free.

2 views0 comments


bottom of page