Monday, January 09, 2012

Sandalphon: Fiery Wheel, Cosmic Angel

Sandalphon: like Metatron (see the earlier entry), the name of this numinous servant of God is derived from Greek, rather than Hebrew, but there is no totally satisfactory explanation for the name.

[A sacred circle, appearing at www.sandiknelltamny.com/amulets.htm]

Sandalphon is a flaming princely angel (sar) and an ofan, or wheel-shaped angel that stretches from heaven to earth, a distance of "500 years" (Beit ha-Midrash 1:58-61). He is the wheel with eyes described by Ezekiel (Ezek. 1:15) that helps propel the divine chariot. Some regard his turning to be the source of heavenly thunder.

According to the Talmud, Sandalphon stands behind the Throne of Glory and continuously crowns God with a crown woven (the image is that of Caesar's laurel crown) from the prayers of Israel (Chag. 13a-b).

Some sources claim Sandalphon is the angelic name of Elijah, the prophet who ascended bodily into heaven. In this association he functions as psychopomp - the gatekeeper who conveys souls to their afterlife abode.

Other sources identify him as the angelic ruler of Asiyah, the material world of action (PR 20:4; Mid. Teh. 19:7). He is also sometimes invoked on amulets as a protector against eviel forces.

In all his iterations (a wheel, conveyor of prayers or souls, the connection between heaven and earth, the spirit of the material plane), he personifies the movement and transfer of forces between higher and lower realms. He is the cyclic, dynamic mandala of divine engagement with creation.

Zal g'mor - Go learn more by reading the Encyclopedia of Jewish Myth, Magic, and Mysticism: http://www.amazon.com/Encyclopedia-Jewish-Myth-Magic-Mysticism/dp/0738709050


Blogger Bill said...

I wonder, is there any connection between the word "sar" and the Assyrian/Akkadian kings now known as "Sargon"?

7:39 AM  

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