Of Fire and Water

Let me tell you of a vision both spectacular and bizarre. The interaction of the elements often provide a spectacle due to their majesty. The vision I witnessed on the evening of 2 July 2012 seems bizarre because I was not in a trance or dream state, though. In fact, I took pictures of this vision.

July 2nd was a hot day here in Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom, but I suspect it was more comfortable than in the mid-Atlantic states of the U.S. Two million people were still without power after being ravaged by severe storms there, and the temperatures may have been as much as ten degrees hotter than here. A lack of rain for several days here was my greater concern.

The Sun was making its way to the western horizon when I heard the first rumblings of thunder. I welcomed the herald of the promised rains. There had been talk of scattered showers for days, but we had not seen any. As one who has been known to enjoy the majesty of a good thunderstorm, I made my self comfortable on the porch on the eastern side of our home. For this reason, I had no direct view of the western horizon.

A strong and steady rain broke upon the ground. It washed down the air, so the accompanying breeze was cool and refreshing. The clouds were not dark enough for the lightning to be pronounced, but there were a few good rumbles of thunder. I knew this was not going to be a long storm. Sure enough, the clouds soon opened up in the west and flooded the area immediately to the south of my home with sunlight. This created a rainbow because the rain continued to come down steadily. The end of the rainbow seemed to be just on the other side of my neighbors property.

I do understand how water in the air creates a rainbow by refracting light. I also know that the more time between lightning and (resulting) thunder indicates the lightening is farther away from you. This does not change the appearance of what I saw next: a horizontal bolt of lightning came out of the west and stretched to touch the rainbow. The bolt did not extend beyond the rainbow, and it seemed to diminish the rainbow. I wish I was fast enough to have snapped a picture of the lightning.

I listened for the thunder that confirmed the lightning must have been very far beyond where the rainbow appeared to be. This does not change the appearance of the horizontal lightning looking like it reached out to touch the rainbow, or the appearance of the rainbow being diminished by the bolt. Despite having knowledge of the physical realities of such natural phenomenon and knowing the lightning did not actually touch the rainbow, the rainbow actually looked like it was struggling to endure: it worked to re-establish itself. Then the event repeated itself!

A second horizontal bolt of lightning reached out of the west and appeared to touch the rainbow again. The time between lightning and thunder indicated the lightning was far beyond where the rainbow appeared to be, even though the diminishing rain was also making the rainbow appear to be farther away. This time the lightning appeared to eliminate a chunk from the middle of the rainbow, though. I should also mention a white streaking in the clouds to the east like fingers reaching out towards the rainbow.

I spent some time bemoaning my old camera and its slow shutter. I would have loved getting a shot of either (preferably both) lightning bolts. I eventually admitted to myself that, even with a better camera, I probably would not have gotten the shots. I do not know how long I pondered my frustration before I looked up and noticed that the rainbow was enduring, and it gained strength as the sunlight returned.

I was trained in the public school system of the United States during the 1960s and early 70s. I was particularly fond of science and understand the fundamental mechanics of of the physical phenomenon I was observing. I am certain that the timing of events that made it appear that lightning was attacking the rainbow would be dismissed simply as coincidence. However, I am Spirit within a physical body and have some understanding of how the arcane interacts with the mundane, so coincidence seems more like a convenience for those who choose to deny Spirit.

What I saw on the evening of July 2nd was something that would have seemed quite normal in an altered state of conscience, trance, or dream state. This vision seems more spectacular (and bizarre) because such was not the case. I also was not drinking or engaged in any manner of substance abuse. I was simply engaged in the sensual appreciation of a change in the weather. Despite my standard public schooling, it seems easy and natural to understand how such phenomenon might have been viewed by people a few short centuries (or more) ago. The problem is that I am not sure of how this should be interpreted.

It may be that I am still in a state of awe from this personal experience. It may also be that this vision is not meant for just me, so putting this out in public for possible interpretations seems reasonable. For this reason, I should also remind everyone that the Moon rose full later that evening. I do sense hope in this vision, which may be how my garden also viewed the rain. I will appreciate any possible interpretations of this vision that anyone has to offer. Blessed be!


8 thoughts on “Of Fire and Water

  1. Amazing.

    I thoroughly enjoy your photographs and dialog of the incident you witnessed. Few people would have been brave enough to stay outdoors during a thunder story, so it is reasonable you may have been the only person to see the magnificant phenomenon in the sky. How fortunate for us that you recorded it for our pleasure.

    Thank you for sharing your story.

  2. War in Heaven, or Dance of Lights? Thank you for sharing this amazing vision… wouldn’t it be wonderful if THIS was the kind of story we see regularly on the 6 o’clock news? Blessed Be, Holy Man.

  3. What an amazing thing that must have been! I find myself reminded of something I learned from a Haitian Voudon practitioner. The Orisha called Oya- Sea-born spirit of the wind, spirit of the storms, mother of the rainbow- has nine children, the nine colors of the rainbow, each with their own meaning. Oya is the spirit of change and a warrior entity also associated with self-sacrifice. For the storm to kiss the rainbow as it did must have been wonderful to see. The storms of life test us, but if we persevere we may find ourselves made stronger.

  4. “War in Heaven, or Dance of Lights?” You always offer your thoughts in the most succinct way. (I admire that about you.) I also had a sense of the “War in Heaven,” but I think I would rather ponder the Dance (although there may be little difference.) I do think the six o’clock news would be improved with stories like this, at least to cut the stress the news can create in people! Blessings to you, special lady.

  5. Now you give me something to research because this Voudon story sounds absolutely fascinating. “[T]he storm to kiss the rainbow…” are words that evoke a new and refreshing perspective on the vision that I must ponder (and seeing this vision did strike me with awe.)

    Your final statement is one of hope, and the rainbow strikes me as a symbol of hope. The rainbow also represents a “covenant” in Christian lore if memory serves, which leads to other things to ponder. I am so glad you re-posted your comment.

  6. I sincerely doubt you will find it written down anywhere. That’s not the way of Voudon. There are members of the communities who are beginning to record the stories. I myself know only a very few stories, and they were told to me by a friend.

  7. That is too bad because it sounds so fascinating. However, I do have mixed feelings as to whether or not everything should be written down. I think something is lost when we depart from the oral traditions because it was recorded somewhere.

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