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Harry Potter's Invitation to the World

by Vickie Ewell


Chapter 84 – The Violet and Black Flames
(HP Chapter 16)

As Harry pulled open the next door, neither of the kids knew if they wanted to look at what was next, but what they found inside the room wasn’t as frightening as they expected.

The room held a table with seven bottles standing up, in a line. These bottles were different shapes and sizes, and held a variety of liquids, so they could be related to a set of individuals. Their number, Seven, represented the various Levels of Alchemy the kids have ritualistically passed through that evening. They have now arrived at Level Seven.

As Harry and Hermione stepped over the threshold and into the room, a fire immediately sprang up behind them in the doorway. It wasn’t ordinary fire. It was purple.

Some mystic traditions believe we start at the beginning of the Path each time we incarnate. This helps us to refine and further purify ourselves. It takes different experiences and circumstances to bring all of the different impurities to the surface. Each time we repeat the cycle, we gain greater abilities to perceive, experience, and identify with the One Power.

This circular rhythm of life is referred to as the Wheels within Wheels spoken of by the Prophet Ezekiel, and the Wheel of Fortune in the Tarot. We get a taste of the loving power of this mercy when Harry and Hermione circle back to save Sirius in Book 3, but the full comprehension of how we and our True Self are One doesn’t arrive until we reach a state of consciousness where we literally identify with our Real Self. That doesn’t happen until our mind and hearts are as purified as our Real Self is.

In Alchemy, the Violet Flames are the power of self-transformation. They are the very essence of Light – what many Christian traditions call the Light of Christ. It is a purifying energy that arises to heal our physical, emotional, and mental bodies. It does that by erasing our karma (the Violet Flames sprung up “behind” the kids) and raising our vibration level as it clears out the past junk and cleanses the Inner Vessel. The qualities of this Violet Ray are mercy, forgiveness, freedom, and transformation.

This is the place where we totally lose every shadow of separateness. It’s where we finally know that all physical actions, sensory experiences, feelings, and thoughts are not limited to ourselves. Everything that is, including our personal will, is a portion of the cosmos and not limited to our individual personality. Free will and personal power are illusions that have to go.

At Level Six, we became One with Spirit. At Level Seven, we become One with everything there is. We move from Son to Father. We move beyond the illusion of separateness and our childhood conditioning to reconcile all polarity and duality, experiencing the joy and love that come with a well-organized mind. Jo depicts this moment physically in the Epilogue of Book 7 where we see that the kids have moved to become parents themselves, but for Harry, the union with his True Self and all that is comes much earlier.

Although the language of Initiation is one of death and rebirth, or resurrection, this power actually alters our nature by dissolving negative energies and transforming them into light. We literally become One with the Absolute Being.

On the other side of the room was another doorway that led onward. That doorway held Black Flames. Archetypically, the color black represents our Shadow Self. The theory often given as a description for this aspect is that the Shadow is where we stuff everything about our self that we don’t want to face or believe. Some of those hidden things are negative, such as pride or a drive for power, but some of those things are positive qualities held hostage by our self-doubts and insecurities.

Because of fear, we often put on a mask of unreality so we can please society, friends, and family. However, fear (and especially fear of this Shadow Self, or opponent) is often referred to as the beginning of Wisdom because it motivates us to find and enter the Path that takes us back home.

Jo reminds us of the concept of false identities when she had several of Harry’s friends take a swing of poly juice potion and transform themselves into a being that looked just like Harry in order to safely transport him out of the Dursley’s home in Book 7. That is what our false personalities do. They pretend they are us. They trick our True Self into identifying with them just as Harry’s friends tried to trick Voldemort. But this scene also introduced us to the concept of everyone evolving into the One.

Black Flames come to life when we remember our True Self – who and what we really are. Presently, we just have an idea. This Black Flame is actually the absorption of all colors, so to some, this color appears as Indigo. It’s more of a very deep blue-violet. The flames are actually the Veil of Saturn, so Jo has remarkably hidden Harry’s ultimate sacrifice in plain sight!

When we’re ready to accept ourselves and see ourselves as we truly are, part light and part dark, the Indigo Flames burn away all of our self-lies and illusions, and purify that which is absolute within us. That was why Harry will go through the Indigo Flames alone.

Hermione saw a roll of paper lying next to the bottles and picked it up. Harry looked over her shoulder, but he didn’t understand any of it. Harry had moved to a higher state of consciousness where he was no longer participating in the typical day-to-day life and struggles of the world.

In fact, when Book 7 opened, Harry told us that whenever he was at the Dursleys, he spent most of his time shut up inside of his room. Level Seven isn’t a social lifestyle. Harry, Ron, and Hermione left their homes and the physical environment of Hogwarts and went into seclusion. This inner journey is one of purification and elimination. It eliminates everything we haven’t previously overcome.

At Level Seven, Hermione represents the objective consciousness of Mercury, so she saw the paper for what it was – a logic puzzle. The spiritual significance of what Professor Snape offered was completely lost to her. She’s not Mercurius. The polarity we face at this level is seed versus desolation, so the stakes were high. Neither Voldemort nor Harry could truly live while the other survived.

Snape’s riddle was Alchemical. It plants spiritual seeds in the hearts of Jo’s readers. On the physical plane, the puzzle helped Hermione figure out which elixir was the Elixer of Life that would move Harry forward. She felt confident and strong. In fact, in her perspective, the test was so simple, it would stump most of the greatest Wizards because they didn’t have even an ounce of logic. “They’d be stuck here forever,” Hermione said. Hermione’s inference was mind-blowing.

We tend to look at great Biblical figures and other great Wizards throughout the centuries as individuals to look up to and follow, but the idea that Hermione presented to us was that many of them have not completed Level Seven because The Way forward was too easy. It’s logical. In reality, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than it is to complete Level Seven.

Level Six required us to give up our physical worlds, our desires, in order to go within and unite with The Holy Spirit, but Level Seven requires us to give up everything that’s left: our Personal Power