One People, One Planet, HON!


1970, poster, colored pencil and pen and ink, 27 7/8” x 22 7/8”

This painting was commissioned as a poster advertising the First Occult Festival at the Fillmore East in New York City, the title of which can be seen on the side of the incomplete pyramid.

The words “Occult Festival” are also printed into the shape of an Ankh at the very top center of the painting. The Ankh is resting atop a UFO sending light across the landscape on either side of the piece. Around and behind the UFO is the constellation known as the Southern Cross. Flanking the UFO in the sky are two Egyptian deities: Anubis on the left (God of the Dead) and Thoth on the right (God of Learning).

Below the UFO is a winged Mercury holding the caduceus, symbolizing the mind, the great healer. Below Mercury is the urn-bearer, Aquarius, symbolizing altruism, brotherhood, synthesis, and the unification of all humankind. Placing Mercury above Aquarius indicates that the higher mind plays a role in this synthesis.

Below Aquarius is a self-portrait of the artist. He is demonstrating with a compass over a map that civilizations and continents rise and fall cyclically. Flanking the artist are two beings representing his tutors. The blue being on the right carries the symbols of the Theosophical Society whose motto is: “There is no religion higher than truth.” The pink being on the left carries the symbols of the Rosicrucian teachings whose motto is: “Light, Life and Love.” The Rosy Cross he carries symbolizes the incarnation of the spirit in matter, with the rose or soul at its center.

To the left of the Rosicrucian being is an obelisk, symbolizing the unity of all creation. At the top of the obelisk is a sun, symbolizing spirit. The text on the obelisk starts with Sanskrit reading “Serpent-power” or wisdom (the elevation of Kundalini). Next is Hebrew reading “Ain Soph Aur” meaning “limitless light” (limitless wisdom). This is followed by Egyptian hieroglyphs reading in general “We rejoice when we see the sun rising in the East.” The 10 Hebrew words that follow list the sephirot of the Tree of Life as found in the Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism). Below the 10 sephiroth is a Rosicrucian code reading “All Things are One.” And finally, the cartouche at the bottom of the obelisk is that of Akhenaten, or Amenhotep IV, the founder of monotheistic belief.

Below the unfinished pyramid in the center, we see it is supported by pillars marked with Egyptian hieroglyphs (blue, left) and the goddess Nut on the lower right. Below the incomplete pyramid is a candidate inside the coffer who is undergoing an initiation and getting a glimpse of his destiny. He is protected by a winged scarab beetle (symbolizing regeneration or rebirth) held by the blue being representing the Theosophical Society. He is also protected by the Rosicrucians, Mercury, and travelers from other dimensions and universes.

The First Occult Festival at the Fillmore East on April 19, 1970 in New York City featured a cross section of the better-known practitioners of the era like psychics Raymond Buckland and Sybil Leek. They used a multi-media approach of words, music, light, and psychic manifestations to enlighten, explain and entertain. The music was provided by the singing groups “Two I’s”, “Cosmic Sound”, and “Light”, whose names appear on the side of the pyramid, and the Joshua Light Show provided the light show.