Seraphim (Hebrew) [from the verbal root saraph to burn] Plural of saraph. Fiery, burning, venomous, poisonous. The word came to have the significance of serpents, referring to those beings described in Isaiah 6:2 as possessing six wings, guarding the divine throne, and endowed with a voice with which they praise the deity; "they are the symbols of Jehovah, and of all the other Demiurgi who produce out of themselves six sons or likenesses -- Seven with their Creator" (SD 2:387n). In later Jewish writings they are associated with the Cherubim and 'Ophannim (wheels) of Ezekiel. They parallel the Hindu nagas -- semi-divine beings of serpent character. "The Seraphim are the fiery Serpents of Heaven which we find in a passage describing Mount Meru as: 'the exalted mass of glory, the venerable haunt of gods and heavenly choristers . . . . not to be reached by sinful men . . . . because guarded by Serpents.' They are called the Avengers, and the 'Winged Wheels' " (SD 1:126) -- avengers in the sense of being the agents of karma. They are the Flames, a class of dhyani-chohans who dried the "turbid dark waters" with which the earth was covered in an early stage of its development (SD 2:16).
In the Qabbalistic hierarchy of angels, the Seraphim correspond to the fifth Sephirah, Geburah. In the ancient Syrian system they are equivalent to the sphere of the nebulae and comets. The celestial hierarchy adopted by Dionysius the pseudo-Aeropagite ranks them first.
to be continue "Seraphim2 "
Saraph (Hebrew) Plural seraphim. Fiery, burning, glowing, filled with light and warmth; also serpent. In the Old Testament, the serpent that Moses is ordered to make is the mystical Saraph, and in this almost purely physiological connection it represents Jehovah, the chief of the fiery serpents (SD 2:387). Flying serpent is the generally accepted translation of saraph me`opheph (Isaiah 30:6) -- commonly connected in Christian theology with the Devil; but the expression is metaphorical and has nothing to do with the Evil One. This curious, significant phrase more accurately means both covered or enwrapped flame or fire, or flying fire. And as saraph also signifies serpent, it could equally mean covered or concealed serpent, or flying serpent.
There is a strong mystical parallel, and possibly some remote etymological connection, between the Sanskrit sarpa (serpent) and the Hebrew saraph, the parallel doubtless arising in the same esoteric thread of mystical thought. See also SERAPHIM