King Arthur and The Sword in the Stone — What it Means and How it Applies Today
Growing up, many of us came across the story of the Legend of King Arthur. We learned about it through tv shows, school, films, poetry, etc. Since Wales is thought by some to be the birthing place of King Arthur, as I sit here on a family holiday in this grand old Welsh landscape, I can think of no better time to discuss the legend and what it can teach us about our lives today.
The notion of nobility and chivalry is something that many of us leap towards with great enthusiasm when it comes to the Arthurian legend. The tales of hardship paired with honor challenge our current societal ideals—especially since these virtuous principles can sometimes appear lost within today’s world. It can be challenging for some of us, especially those who are on a spiritual path, not to be met with confusion and frustration as to why our so-called ‘role models’ or ‘celebrities’ of the modern day media tend to be lacking in this same integrity and honor.
Rather than using any more of our valuable attention and energy towards these distractions, instead we should revisit the traditional stories, muses, and mentors that inspire us towards greatness.
King Arthur — Standing the Test of Time
So then, why does the Arthurian legend stand the test of time… and what can we learn from it?
Stories that involve great spiritual lessons and profound personal feats—such as the story of King Arthur—are able to touch human consciousness on a deep level and pass down feelings of triumph and success to every generation exposed to them. These stories are rooted in deep truths and are helpful for us to evolve as a species, to feel a sense of belonging, and to embody our nobility as humans in the world. Instead of busying ourselves with too many current affairs, or entertaining ourselves with the schadenfreude types of media, we could instead start spending more of our energy thinking about the parts of our legacies we wish to pass down to our grandchildren.
Merlin, King Arthur’s supernatural sidekick, was a mage who decided to turn his back on the evil forces of the world (his father was supposedly a devil) and turned towards the forces of good instead. Although young Arthur did not possess any magical powers, he was known for his courage, honesty, and integrity which is why Merlin chose to help him succeed as king. Since Arthur was the chosen one to wield the legendary sword Excalibur, let us now look at what this can denote for us in the world today. How do we wield our own sword of truth and righteousness?
Excalibur — The Legendary Sword in The Stone
The sword in the stone is representative of the blockage of our kundalini energy which can only be unblocked through healing our chakras and ultimately allowing the kundalini energies to rise within us. Only those who live by truth can wield the sword or rather the essence of their being. As the tale goes, those who are truly worthy will be destined for greatness and ultimately find the holy grail. If too many lies and illusions are allowed to corrupt us, either from society or from our own minds, then we become clouded in our vision, unable to wield the true sword, as the countless men that came before Arthur demonstrated.
The deeper healing that takes place through self-reflection, meditation, and yoga—as represented by the time Arthur spent with Merlin, away from society—helps us to balance our energy centers. Once we are able to unblock these stagnant energies within us, through delving into the very depths of our minds, we begin to think and act from a more aligned mind, body, and spirit.
The Lady of The Lake — The Sacred Feminine and The Spiritual Mind
The other well-known mythos of this legendary sword is that it emerges from water and is gifted to Arthur from the Lady of the Lake. This is symbolizing that until the higher self or spirit rules over the flesh rather than being controlled by the ego, one cannot wield the sword of righteousness. Arthur is chosen to have true rulership over his kingdom, whether it be of his human body or the kingdom of Camelot. Either way, he is chosen and entrusted with such power to do good with the powers of the intellect—which the sword represents.
The hand that emerges is that of Nimue, the ‘Lady of the Lake’, and she is representative of the divine feminine guardian of the spiritual mind who only entrusts power and purity to those who are worthy. She represents the spiritual intuition. She reminds us of its sharpness and ability to cut through illusion and reveal the transcendent moments in time. When there is awareness of the reality of our true being, then and only then can we wield the sword of intellect. For the mind to see clearly it must be cleansed of its egoic tendencies in order to plunge into the depths of the waters (the mind) from which the sword emerges—where truth and stillness come to the surface of our consciousness.
King Arthur, along with many other great historical figures, represents a type of nobility and honor which was gained through navigating the territory of faith, truth, and integrity, even when all else in the world is seemingly overcome by folly. Excalibur is symbolized as this truth raising up. In the same way, our kundalini energy rises up our spines piercing through the veil of illusion. This could have also been spurned by his love towards, and marriage to, Guinevere. Through their love and soul mate connection, he purified not only his sexual relationship but also other relationships in his life. True love really does heal all spiritual wounds.
Even though there were moments in which Arthur misused his power, such as when he was challenged by Sir Lancelot in order to show his supremacy over him, Arthur later repented for his action and understood that by the misuse of his powers, he had broken a great law of Spirit. Through this lesson, he learned how to always have the courage to stand against any opposition. From his own inner strength, not that of external forces, he promised never to do it again.
The Holy Grail — The Highest State of Consciousness
The quest for the Holy Grail, or the highest state of consciousness, began when Guinevere betrayed Arthur through adultery with Sir Lancelot. They began to realize that all of their achievements were still not fully grounded in complete truth. After a great struggle, including Arthur trying to kill his beloved, he and his knights realized that the highest state of consciousness—the holy grail—was within themselves. This story is representative of one of the most challenging fears we face as human beings: to purify and conquer the impurities within ourselves.
Guinevere later became a nun, emphasizing the journey towards her higher self, and ultimately lead King Arthur back to his higher self in the process by allowing them both to overcome the attachments to the physical body. There are many trials, twists, and tribulations that the characters in this story had to overcome, just as there are in our own lives. One of the later stories of betrayal entails both Morgana, Arthur’s sister, and Mordred his nephew, adding an even darker side to the tale. Both of them, even though they were family to Arthur, wished to see his death. It is also important to note that in Irish myth King Arthur is thought of as nothing more than a thief. Therefore, all of these tales of Arthur’s greatness were not always well met. This is not to say that he was not worthy of his reign. In fact, to the contrary, the retelling of this story countless times is a testament to the fact that life will always test us, no matter how noble we may become.
Heaven on Earth — A Personal Responsibility, Collectively
This is one of the most important points for us to understand when it comes to going about our everyday lives. There will always be other people who can lead us astray. There will always be seemingly ‘bad’ situations that crop up within the grand theatrical play of our lives. What is important to note about these confusing parts of life is that they are simply there to test us in righteousness. The challenging or mysterious events that happen to us—from falling out with a friend to getting into a car accident—teach us deeper lessons in life and acts as a test of faith.
By overcoming his foes and the tragic heartbreak from Guinevere’s betrayal, we see the potential not only in Arthur but also in ourselves to overcome any setbacks within life. If we think of these negative influences as symbolic of the blockages we have within our own bodies (chakras) which stem from our minds, we start to realize that we have always had the power to overcome our own false thoughts and transmute these behaviors.
Ultimately, King Arthur dies in battle. But this is more a death of his ego because his spirit lives on through all of us and is said to one day be born again—similar to that of the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Ultimately, this spirit within all of us will overcome the over popularized dystopian prophecies of the future for mankind, including the negative things we tell ourselves as individuals. This newfound faith in the truth of our being is having a ripple effect on the collective consciousness and is establishing our new kingdom on Earth as it is in Heaven.
“King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table will arise to establish His Kingdom. They will come again and again until His Kingdom will be firmly established.”
Peace, Love and Light to you.
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