As we have discussed in our Introductory Articles as well as in several other Character Profiles, there are people and programs with attributes that are more associated with the left side of restriction and others leaning to the right side of expansion. At times, certain characters reflect the “central path” of balance and synergy. One of those is Niobe.
As we observed in The Matrix Reloaded, these two men have very different outlooks on life.
Whereas Morpheus is a man of faith and imagination, who trusts the Oracle and believes in what Neo can do, Commander Lock thinks quite differently as when he adamantly stated:
I don’t want to hear that shit! I don’t care about Oracles or prophecies or Messiahs.
Lock is strictly “by the book” — to a fault, as we discuss on his profile page.
Which brings us back to Niobe. What is behind her relationships with two such different men?
Niobe: Synthesis and Change
There is an interesting concept in kabbalah regarding the emanations along the middle path and how they relate to those on the left and right. We’re dealing here with Tiferet, Yesod and Malkhut.
Niobe is an excellent example of this, and her relationships with Lock and Morpheus, and what they represent on a sefirotic level, is key to understanding who she is.
On the one hand, we see Niobe being much like Lock in following a very ‘prescribed’ way:
We’re gonna do what Commander Lock ordered us to do. We’ll evacuate broadcast level and return to Zion. … A strategy is still being formulated.
Later, we see a very different Niobe as she “bucks the system,” going against the ‘logical’ path.
Captain Niobe of the Logos will answer the Councillor’s call.
Interesting was her explanation to Lock as to why she did this:
Because some things never change, Jason, and some things do.
There’s that ‘change’ concept that follows choice and connection. You might already know who instigate this.
Niobe: Analysis and Choice
What may seem ironic is that it was Niobe’s disposition to analyzing things (the attribute of Hod) that moved her away from the strictness of the left side of judgment. However, this was not a jump to the “right side of belief/faith,” that Morpheus lived by.
As we see, she is not on the same wagon Morpheus is riding:
I can’t help it, Morpheus, I can’t help thinking – what if you’re wrong. What if all this – the prophecy, everything – is bullshit.
This is not doubt as Cypher manifested. It is her continuing to calculate (Hod) within the aspect of moving forward (Netzach).
Niobe’s decision is based on an analysis of what Neo could do:
Niobe: Two ships, two directions. Sounds like providence, doesn’t it, Morpheus?
Morpheus: You’ve never believed in The One.
Niobe: I still don’t.
Morpheus: Then why are you doing this?
Niobe: I believe in him.
She has seen the things Neo is capable of, so she believes in him based on those observations, and not for some mystical prophetic reason like Morpheus does.
We see this exemplified again when Niobe, Morpheus and Commander Roland must give testimony to the council. Note her “central position” in the scene, shown at the top of this page.
This mirrors her balance between Morpheus and Roland, the latter being similar to Lock:
Councillor Dillard: So you gave them your ship?
Niobe: That is correct, Councillor, I did.
Councillor Grace: Knowing what he planned to do with it?
Councillor Hamann: And the Oracle said nothing of this?
Niobe: She told me Neo would need my help, and when the time came I would choose to help him or not.
Councillor West: But what hope can a single vessel have against their entire defense system?
Roland: None, it’s completely impossible, but he wouldn’t listen. He wouldn’t even take any ammunition. He was totally out of his goddamn mind.
Morpheus: No, he wasn’t. Neo is doing what he believes he must do. I don’t know if what he’s doing is right, and I don’t know if he’ll reach the machine city. And if he does, I don’t know what he can do to save us. But I do know that as long as there’s a single breath in his body, he will not give up. And neither can we.
Of course, we already know who lies behind setting the humans in a new condition resulting in new choice, connection and change – the analytical ‘mother’ of all.
This was again indicated in this dialogue:
Morpheus: Yes. How did you know about that?
Niobe: The Oracle.
Morpheus: You saw her?
Niobe: Just before the sentinels found us.
Morpheus: What did she tell you?
Niobe: The same thing she always does. Exactly what I needed to hear.
So is this all simple logic or is it a type of belief/faith?
Niobe: “Pragmatic Belief”
When we think of ‘belief’ or ‘faith,’ it’s generally not associated with analysis and logic. The character of Niobe shows us that this is not the case.
We see in Christian and Jewish traditions, the idea of putting correct actions into practice first and that ‘faith in the unseen’ will come later.
There is also this interesting comment from the New Testament about a faith that is based on the works done by someone:
John 10:37,38 – If I do not do the works of My Father, do not believe Me; but if I do, though you do not believe Me, believe the works, that you may know and believe that the Father is in Me, and I in Him.”
This mirrors what Niobe accepts regarding Neo. She does not accept the deeper mystical concepts related to “the One,” but believes in him, based on his ‘works.’
Niobe is a synthesis of the analytical left side that we saw in Lock (though this attribute was defective as we discussed) that relates to the attribute of Hod, and the proactive non-restrained right-side attribute of Nezach as Morpheus demonstrates in many of his actions.
These two attributes are called the “wings of Yesod” in kabbalah, and find themselves united in the synergistic properties of that sefirah.
A More Ancient Example
Interestingly, in kabbalah the attribute of Netzach is associated with the figure of Moses, with his proactive, “win-win’ approach (even with God). His brother Aaron, is connected to Hod, with his ability to analyze and resolve issues among people and bring peace.
The confluence of these main attributes in the two men is found was their sister Miriam. She is known as the one who had the connection to all the people – another function of Yesod.
Upon Miriam’s death, it is said that the water stopped flowing from the rock that had supplied the people in the desert. This aspect of ‘provision’ is also associated with the emanation of Yesod.
The Biblical story of her placing of her baby brother Moses in a basket in the river was one of both calculation and faith – much like Niobe.
The fourth Matrix movie will see a great “awakening from below” of the people still lost in the Matrix. This will require some key unifying leadership. Don’t be surprised to see Niobe in such a role.
We will discuss deeper “dual aspects” of the Sefirot on the middle column in a future section.
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