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Lull, Raymond

Category: Ordinary person

 

Raymond [Ramon] Lull is an interesting example of a troubadour who 'went wrong'.  Lull was well educated, and became the tutor of James II of Aragon. He was conversant in Latin, Catalan, Occitan and rather interestingly Arabic. 

By 1257, he had married Blanca Picany and they had two children, Domènec and Magdalena; but this was the sort of marriage I have described in the section on troubadours, a marriage of minds and for social reasons, not a marriage of the subconscious – and he lived a troubadour's life. As part of this life he became the “administrative head” of the royal household to the future King James II of Majorca, a relative of his wife.  But what history is not so keen to discuss is the relationship he had as a troubadour in this household.

It is clear that Raymond was unaware of the consequences of his approach , for in 1265 he had a spiritual  experience, which shook the very core of him.  He narrates in the Vita coaetanea ("Daily Life"), an "autobiography" which he dictated circa 1311 to a Carthusian monk at the charterhouse near Paris that:

 Ramon, while still a young man and Seneschal to the King of Majorca, was very given to composing worthless songs and poems and to doing other licentious things. One night he was sitting beside his bed, about to compose and write in his vulgar tongue a song to a lady whom he loved with a foolish love; and as he began to write this song, he looked to his right and saw our Lord  Jesus Christ on the Cross, as if suspended in mid-air.

 

Being 'crucified' is for some a visionary indication of a rebirth experience.  The figure is actually a composer constructed image of their Higher self and shows them undergoing the equivalent of a software rewrite – rebirth can actually be much more traumatic than this as it is possible to feel yourself decapitated or cut up.  He was let off lightly, but he clearly did not know what this meant.  The vision came to him five times in total. He still didn't cotton on.

 And here is where it all went wrong, for instead of building on the experience, he became a monk,  left his position and his family and lived a life of solitude and study for the next nine years. He never had another spiritual experience.

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