Saturday, March 11, 2023

The candles blew and then disappeared

In "Knock, knock, Neo" (February 27), I mention reading the H. G. Wells story "The Red Room." The narrator, scoffing at ghosts, attempts to stay in the titular room, which is supposed to be haunted, but ends up getting spooked in spite of himself. He lights lots of candles, but they keep going out, one after another, faster than he can relight them, and in the end he panics. After his ordeal, he tells his hosts that the room is haunted by Fear itself:

"You believe now," said the old man with the withered hand, "that the room is haunted?" He spoke no longer as one who greets an intruder, but as one who condoles with a friend.

"Yes," said I, "the room is haunted. . . . There is neither ghost of earl nor ghost of countess in that room; there is no ghost there at all, but worse, far worse, something impalpable --”

"Well?" they said.

"The worst of all the things that haunt poor mortal men," said I; "and that is, in all its nakedness -- 'Fear!' Fear that will not have light nor sound, that will not bear with reason, that deafens and darkens and overwhelms. It followed me through the corridor, it fought against me in the room --"

I stopped abruptly. There was an interval of silence. My hand went up to my bandages. "The candles went out one after another, and I fled --"

Three or four days ago, about a week after reading "The Red Room," I was praying in my chapel at night, with several candles as my only illumination. At one point, although the door and windows were closed, the candle flames all suddenly turned horizontal and then went out one by one. No panic ensued, in part because, unlike Wells's protagonist, I had the option of just flipping on the light switch.

In a comment on my own March 10 post "Weirdly specific sync: Meerkats and piranhas," I mentioned listening to the Keep Shelly in Athens version of the Blue Öyster Cult song "(Don't Fear) the Reaper," noting the "Valentine" reference in the lyrics. Debbie replied that she didn't know the song but had looked up the lyrics and was struck by a different line: "Then the door was open, and the wind appeared." I hadn't noticed that line myself because that verse isn't included in the KSiA version. I looked up the original:

Then the door was open and the wind appeared
The candles blew and then disappeared
The curtains flew and then he appeared
Saying don't be afraid . . .


Ra1119bee said...


I believe that your Soul is trying to get your attention.
Most endings, and as we all know, are met with FEAR.

But what's more powerful than Fear is Hope, which Hope is what the candles
are symbolic of.
The candles may burn out because of the wind, but that's only true in our waking life,
when the candles are viewed with our physical eyes.

I believe that there is ONE candle which always stay eternally in flame, and that one candle is the Soul (which I believe the Third Eye is where our Soul resides, which I believe our Soul is connected to God ).

When we see with our Third Eye, we 'see' Truth, which is only found when we see beyond the illusion of the veil. It's Fear which keeps us anchored to this illusion.

In the Don't Fear the Reaper lyrics I believe the reference to curtains is symbolic
of the veil.

Then the door was open and the wind appeared
The candles blew and then disappeared
The curtains flew and then he appeared
Saying don't be afraid . . .

You of course know all this. I'm just adding my 2 cents.:-)

Rara Avis said...

Here is the complete stanza from which I quoted before:

Trotz dem alten Drachen,
Trotz des Todes Rachen,
Trotz der Furcht darzu!
Tobe, Welt, und springe,
Ich steh hier und singe
In gar sichrer Ruh.
Gottes Macht hält mich in acht;
Erd und Abgrund muss verstummen,
Ob sie noch so brummen.

I defy the old dragon, (T.Rex)
I defy the jaws of death, (piranha/flytrap)
I defy the fear thereof! (Don’t fear the Reaper)
Rage, World, and spring to attack:
I stand here and sing
in wholly secure peace.
God’s might takes care of me;
earth and abyss must fall silent,
however much they rumble on.

Sync: Odin at the door, DD lemniscates, sideways eyeballs

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