Advanced History, Lesson 2--Pagan/Christian Literature and Doctrine

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Chaldean/Sumerian

The Pseudepigraphical Book of Enoch

The Patriarch Enoch

Origins in Sumerian Mythology

"According to the biblical narrative (Genesis 5:21-24), Enoch lived only 365 years (far less than the other patriarchs in the period before the Flood). Enoch 'walked with God; then he was no more for God took him'."
- Milik, Jazef. T., ed. The Books of Enoch: Aramaic Fragments of Qumran Cave 4

 "The Enoch literature seems to offer an alternative to the form of Judaism that centers upon the Mosaic covenantal law. It appeals to a myth of great evil and punishment in ancient times and calls on people to be righteous because another judgment is coming. That righteousness is apparently defined in Enoch's writings, not in the Mosaic law. In other words, the appeal here is to a much earlier time in history, before the division of nations. Was Enoch chosen to make a wider appeal than Moses who lived after the nation of Israel had begun? There is ample reason for believing that the biblical and pseudepigraphic Enoch is a reflection of Mesopotamian traditions about the seventh antediluvian king Enmeduranki of Sippar, a king who was associated with the sun god and with divination. Enoch, the seventh pre-flood patriarch in the Bible, taught a solar calendar and received revelations about the future through mantic means such as symbolic dreams."
- James C. Vanderkam

"According to Sumerian chronicles of the earlier times, it was at Eridu's temple that Enki, as guardian of the secrets of all scientific knowledge, kept the ME's - tabletlike objects on which the scientific data were inscribed. One of the Sumerian texts details how the goddess Inanna (later known as Ishtar), wishing to give status to her 'cult center' Uruk (the biblical Erech), tricked Enki into giving her some of those divine formulas. Adapa, we find, was also nicknamed NUN.ME, meaning "He who can decipher the ME's'. Even unto millennia later, in Assyrian times, the saying 'Wise as Adapa' meant that someone was exceedingly wise and knowledgeable....The 'wide knowledge' imparted by Enki to Adapa included writing, medicine, and - according to the astronomical series of tablets UD.SAR.ANUM.ENLILLA ('The Great Days of Amu and Enlil') - knowledge of astronomy and astrology."

"...It is almost certain that the biblical 'Enoch' was the equivalent of the Sumerian first priest, EN.ME.DUR.AN.KI ('High Priest of the ME's of the Bond Heaven-Earth'), the man from the city Sippar taken heavenward to be taught the secrets of Heaven and Earth, of divination, and of the calendar. It was with him that the generations of astronomer-priests, of Keepers of the Secrets, began."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

"The learned savant
who guards the secrets of the gods
will bind his favored son with an oath
before Shamash and Adad...
and will instruct him in the secrets of the gods."
"Thus was the line of priests created,
those who are allowed to approach Shamash and Adad."
- Sumerian tablet (W. G. Lambert, Enmeduranki and Related Material)

"The legend [of Enoch] begins...with the Sumerian King List. This is a list of rulers before the Flood, and is preserved in several forms, including Berossus. Here one of the kings, often given as the seventh (as Enoch is in his list), is called Enmeduranki or Enmeduranna. He is generally associated with the city of Sippar, which was the home of the cult of the sun god Shamash. Moreover, in other texts this Enmeduranki was the first to be shown, by Adad and Shamash, three techniques of divination: pouring oil on water, inspecting a liver, and the use of a cedar (rod), whose function is still unclear. These were to be transmitted from generation to generation, and in fact became the property of the guild of baru, the major group of diviners in Babylon.  "These details show how the biblical portrait of Enoch may have been compiled from Enmeduranki: each is seventh in the antediluvian list; the biblical 365 preserves the affinity to the sun, rather than the sun god; walking with God (or perhaps, 'angels'?) suggests the intimacy between god(s) and man. The final connection links not with Enmeduranki, but with a fish-man (apkallu), with which each of the first seven kings associated and from whom they learnt all kinds of knowledge. Enmeduranki's apkallu, called Utu'abzu, is mentioned in another cuneiform text, where he is said to have ascended to heaven. This last link remains provisional, but at all events, the writer of Genesis 5:21-24 appears to either have created Enoch as a counterpart of Enmeduranki or, equally probably, to have alluded to an already existing Jewish tradition about Enoch, already modeled on the earlier figure."
- John Rogerson and Philip Davies, The Old Testament World

"One cannot rule out the possibility that, as Enmduranki and Enoch, Adapa too was the seventh in a line of sages, the Sages of Eridu, and thus another version of the Sumerian memory echoed in the biblical Enoch record. According to this tale, seven Wise Men were trained in Eridu, Enki's city; their epithets and particular knowledge varied from version to version. Rykle Borger, examining this tale in light of the Enoch traditions ('Die Beschworungsserie Bit Meshri und die Himmelfahrt Henochs' in the Journal of Near Eastern Studies, vol. 33), was especially fascinated by the inscription on the third tablet of the series of Assyrian Oath Incantations. In it the name of each sage is given and his main call on fame is explained; it says thus of the seventh: 'Uta-abzu, he who to heaven ascended'. Citing a second such text, R. Borger concluded that this seventh sage, whose name combined that of Utu/Shamash with the Lower World (Abzu) domain of Enki, was the Assyrian 'Enoch'.  "According to the Assyrian references to the wisdom of Adapa, he composed a book of sciences titled U.SAR d ANUM d ENLILA - 'Writings regarding Time; from divine Anu and divine Enlil'. Adapa, thus, is credited with writing Mankind's first book of astronomy and the calendar."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

"Henceforth, the seventh king shall be known by his Semitic name. 'Enoch' (meaning 'initiated' or 'dedicated') may have abdicated his throne. He took his son (the biblical Methuselah) on a journey to the west. They settled at Moriah, where Enoch built an underground temple, having been inspired in a dream. Then he engraved cuneiform characters on two triangles made of solid gold. The first delta was concealed at Moriah. Methuselah was entrusted with the second. He took the object back to Sippar. Enoch remained at Moriah, to become the old man on the mountain. He lived 365 years, according to Genesis, and then he died. Or did he vanish into thin air?"
- enoch@execulink.com, "Enoch"

The Secrets of Enoch

"Enoch was the first who invented books and different sorts of writing. The ancient Greeks declare that Enoch is the same as Mercury Trismegistus [Hermes], and that he taught the sons of men the art of building cities, and enacted some admirable laws...He discovered the knowledge of the Zodiac, and the course of the Planets; and he pointed out to the sons of men, that they should worship God, that they should fast, that they should pray, that they should give alms, votive offerings, and tenths. He reprobated abominable foods and drunkenness, and appointed festivals for sacrifices to the Sun, at each of the Zodiacal Signs."
- Hebraeus

According to Masonic lore, Enoch was the inventor of writing, "that he taught men the art of building", and that, before the flood, he "feared that the real secrets would be lost - to prevent which he concealed the grand Secret, engraven on a white oriental porphyry stone, in the bowels of the earth."
- Royal Masonic Cyclopaedia

"In his Antiquities of the Jews, Josephus writes that Adam had forewarned his descendants that sinful humanity would be destroyed by a deluge. In order to preserve their science and philosophy, the children of Seth therefore raised two pillars, one of brick and the other of stone, on which were inscribed the keys to their knowledge.
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

The children of Seth "also were the inventors of that peculiar sort of wisdom which is concerned with the heavenly bodies, and their order. And that their inventions might not be lost before they were sufficiently known, upon Adam's prediction that the world was to be destroyed at one time by the force of fire, and at another time by the violence and quantity of water, they made two pillars, the one of brick, the other of stone: they inscribed their discoveries on them both, that in case the pillar of brick should be destroyed by the flood, the pillar of stone might remain, and exhibit those discoveries to mankind; and also inform them that there was another pillar of brick erected by them. Now this remains in the land of Siriad to this day."
- Flavius Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews Bk I, Ch II, Sn 3

According to one legend, Enoch had foreknowledge of the coming Deluge.

"The patriarch Enoch....constructed an underground temple [at Moriah] consisting of nine vaults, one beneath the other, placing in the deepest vault a triangular tablet of gold [a 'white oriental porphyry stone' in one version] bearing upon it the absolute and ineffable name of Deity. According to some accounts, Enoch made two golden deltas. The larger he placed upon the white cubical altar in the lowest vault and the smaller [inscribed with strange words Enoch had gained from the angels] he gave into the keeping of his son, Methuselah, who did the actual construction work of the brick chambers according to the pattern revealed to his father by the Most High. In the form and arrangements of these vaults Enoch epitomized the nine spheres of the ancient Mysteries and the nine sacred strata of the earth through which the initiate must pass to reach the flaming Spirit dwelling in its central core."
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

"The vaults were then sealed, and upon the spot Enoch had two indestructible columns constructed - one of marble, so that it might 'never burn', and the other of Laterus, or brick, so that it might 'not sink in water'.  "On the brick column were inscribed the 'seven sciences' of mankind, the so-called 'archives' of Masonry, while on the marble column he 'placed an inscription stating that a short distance away a priceless treasure would be found in a subterranean vault'. Enoch then retired to Mount Moriah, traditionally equated with the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, where he was 'translated' to heaven.
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 13

Methuselah "took the object back to Sippar. Enoch remained at Moriah, to become the old man on the mountain. He lived 365 years, according to Genesis, and then he died. Or did he vanish into thin air?"
- Brian , "ENOCH The Greatest Story Never Told"

Rediscovery of the Vaults

"In time, King Solomon uncovered the hidden vaults while constructing his legendary temple and learned of their divine secrets. Memory of these two ancient pillars of Enoch was preserved by the Freemasons, who set up representations of them in their lodges. Known as the Antediluvian Pillars, or Enoch's Pillars, they were eventually replaced by representations of the two huge columns named 'Jachin' and 'Boaz', said to have stood on each side of the entrance porch to Solomon's Temple."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 13

Enoch's "name signified in the Hebrew, INITIATE or INITIATOR. The legend of the columns, of granite and brass or bronze, erected by him, is probably symbolical. That of bronze, which survived the flood, is supposed to symbolize the mysteries, of which Masonry is the legitimate successor from the earliest times the custodian and depository of the great philosophical and religious truths, unknown to the world at large, and handed down from age to age by an unbroken current of tradition, embodied in symbols, emblems, and allegories."
- General Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma

The Three Books: 1 Enoch; Discovery of the "Lost Text"

"The Greek word pseudepigrapha is a Greek word meaning 'falsely superscribed,' or what we moderns might call writing under a pen name. The classification, 'OT Pseudepigrapha,' is a label that scholars have given to these writings."
- Craig A. Evans, Noncanonical Writings and New Testament Interpretation, (1992) p. 22

"The Book of Enoch is a pseudepigraphical work (a work that claims to be by a biblical character). The Book of Enoch was not included in either the Hebrew or most Christian biblical canons, but could have been considered a sacred text by the sectarians."
- Milik, Jazef. T., ed. The Books of Enoch: Aramaic Fragments of Qumran Cave 4

The Book of Enoch is "an ancient composition known from two sets of versions, an Ethiopic one that scholars identify as '1 Enoch', and a Slavonic version that is identified as '2 Enoch', and which is also known as The Book of the Secrets of Enoch. Both versions, of which copied manuscripts have been found mostly in Greek and Latin translations, are based on early sources that enlarged on the short biblical mention that Enoch, the seventh Patriarch after Adam, did not die because, at age 365, 'he walked with God' - taken heavenward to join the deity."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

"I Enoch, also known as the Ethiopic Apocalypse of Enoch, is the oldest of the three pseudepigraphal books attributed to Enoch, the man who apparently did not die, but was taken up to heaven (Gen 5:24). The book was originally written in either Hebrew or Aramaic, perhaps both, but it survives in complete form only in Ethiopic (Ge'ez), and in fragmentary form in Aramaic, Greek (1:1-32:6; 6:1-10:14; 15:8-16:1; 89:42-49; 97:6-104), and Latin (106:1-18)."  "The materials in I Enoch range in date from 200 B.C.E. to 50 C.E. I Enoch contributes much to intertestamental views of angels, heaven, judgment, resurrection, and the Messiah. This book has left its stamp upon many of the NT writers, especially the author of Revelation."
- Craig A. Evans, Noncanonical Writings and New Testament Interpretation, (1992) p. 23

"Prior to the eighteenth century, scholars had believed the Book of Enoch to be irretrievably lost: composed long before the birth of Christ, and considered to be one of the most important pieces of Jewish mystical literature, it was only known from fragments and from references to it in other texts. James Bruce changed all this by procuring several copies of the missing work during his stay in Ethiopia. These were the first complete editions of the Book of Enoch ever to be seen in Europe."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"The Book of Enoch remained in darkness until 1821, when the long years of dedicated work by a professor of Hebrew at the University of Oxford were finally rewarded with the publication of the first ever English translation of the Book of Enoch. The Reverend Richard Laurence, Archbishop of Cashel, had labored for many hundreds of hours over the faded manuscript in the hands of the Bodleian Library, carefully substituting English words and expressions for the original Geez, while comparing the results with known extracts, such as the few brief chapters preserved in Greek by Syncellus during the ninth century."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 21

"The original Aramaic version was lost until the Dead Sea fragments were discovered."  "The original language of most of this work was, in all likelihood, Aramaic (an early Semitic language). Although the original version was lost in antiquity, portions of a Greek translation were discovered in Egypt and quotations were known from the Church Fathers. The discovery of the texts from Qumran Cave 4 has finally provided parts of the Aramaic original. ...Humankind is called on to observe how unchanging nature follows God's will."
- Milik, Jazef. T., ed. The Books of Enoch: Aramaic Fragments of Qumran Cave 4

Composition: 1 Enoch

"1 Enoch, preserved in a full, 108-chapter form in Ethiopic, consists of five parts and one appended chapter. It originated in Aramaic (perhaps Hebrew for chaps. 37-71), was translated into Greek, and from Greek into Ethiopic."
- James C. Vanderkam (Professor of Hebrew Scriptures at the University of Notre Dame)

"The Aramaic Book of Enoch...very considerably influenced the idiom of the New Testament and patristic literature, more so in fact than any other writing of the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha."
- Norman Golb, Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls?, (1995) p. 366

"As it now stands, I Enoch appears to consist of the following five major divisions:
(1) The Book of the Watchers (chaps. 1-36);
(2) The Book of the Similitudes (chaps. 37-7l);
(3) The Book of Astronomical Writings (chaps. 72-82);
(4) The Book of Dream Visions (chaps. 83-90); and
(5) The Book of the Epistle of Enoch (chaps. 91-107)."
- Craig A. Evans, Noncanonical Writings and New Testament Interpretation, (1992) p. 23

"Chaps. 1-36 The Book of the Watchers may date from the third century BCE. Parts of its text have been identified on several copies from Qumran cave 4; the earliest fragmentary manuscript (4QEnocha) dates, according to the editor J.T. Milk, to between 200 and 150 BCE. All Qumran copies are in the Aramaic language."
- James C. Vanderkam

"James Vanderkam divides the first part of 1 Enoch into five sections:
1-5 a theophany followed by an eschatological admonition
6-11 the angel story (stories)
12-16 Enoch and the failed petition of the angels who descended,
17-19 Enoch's first journey,
20-36 Enoch's second journey (chap. 20 is a list of angels who are connected with the journeys)."
- Tom Simms (CrossTalk)

"Chaps. 37-71 The Book of Parables (or the Similitudes of Enoch) may have been composed in the late first century BCE; a number of scholars prefer to place it in the first or even the second century CE. Milik assigns it to the late third century CE. No fragments of these chapters have been found at Qumran, and some think their original language was Hebrew, not Aramaic."
- James C. Vanderkam

As described in the Book of the Parables: "On the one side are God, the heavenly entourage, the agents of his judgment...and God's people...On the other are the chief demon Azazel, his angels, and the kings and the mighty...[who] would have their counterparts among the Roman generals, governors, triumvirs, and monarchs whose activities in Judaea are well documented in the sources."
- George Nickelsburg, Jewish Literature Between the Bible and the Mishnah

"Chaps. 72-82 The Astronomical Book, like the Book of Watchers, may date from the third century BCE; the oldest copy of it seems to have been made not long after 200 BCE. Sizable portions of the text are preserved on four copies, written in Aramaic, from Qumran cave 4. The Aramaic original appears to have been much different and much longer than the Ethiopic text, adding far more astronomical details."
- James C. Vanderkam

Authorship

"The Judaic Law of the Pentateuch had come to be conceived as the final and supreme revelation of God ... there was now no room for independent representatives ... such as the post-Exilic prophets. As Zechariah made clear in his parable of the Foolish Shepherd, 'a man could, or ought to be put to death for setting himself up as a prophet.'"
- Ian Wilson, Jesus, The Evidence, p. 62

"Thus the names of pseudonymous authors were used, of Isaiah or even ancient Enoch."
- Chris King, "The Apocalyptic Tradition"

King argues that 1 Enoch is an unmistakable product of Hellenistic civilization (although its roots are firmly embedded in Mesopotamian and Persian tradition).

"A world view so encyclopaediac that it embraced the geography of heaven and earth, astronomy, meteorology, medicine was no part of Jewish tradition - but was familiar to educated Greeks, but attempting to emulate and surpass Greek wisdom, by having an integrating divine plan for destiny, elaborated through an angelic host with which Enoch is in communication through his mystical travels.quot;
- Chris King, "The Apocalyptic Tradition"

Although the Book of Enoch is considered as apocryphal, it was clearly known to early Christian writers as the following quote from 1 Enoch 1:9 indicates:

"In the seventh (generation) from Adam, Enoch also prophesied these things, saying: 'Behold, the Lord came with his holy myriads, to execute judgment on all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners spoke against him'."
- Jude 14-15

A Dream or Literary License?

"And I went off and sat down at the waters of Dan, in the land of Dan, to the south of the west of Hermon: I read their petition till I fell asleep. And behold a dream came to me, and visions fell down upon me, and I saw visions of chastisement, and a voice came bidding (me) I to tell it to the sons of heaven, and reprimand them."
- 1 Enoch 13:7b-8

"What one can say about Enoch in 1 Enoch 13 (and this applies to Daniel and Ezekiel also) is that the narrative has a seer or a prophet engage in the ritual for an incubation oracle by sleeping at a sacred spring, etc. So we have a pseudepigraphical character (at least for Enoch and Daniel) depicted as engaging in an actual ritual (for that matter, 4 Ezra has Ezra spend a week in the fields eating flowers). While all of this may represent a deliberate fiction, it does at least develop its fiction in terms of the ancient world's fascination with the seeking of dreams and visions for oracular purposes. For that matter, the fascination with seeking dreams and visions includes the recording of those dreams, as the inscriptions from the temples of Asclepius show, so we have some kind of contact between dreaming (or visions) and written documents. The problem in knowing what to make of the apocalypses is that they are pseudepigraphical, but they are at least depicting their pseudepigraphical characters engaging in rituals that were thought by the ancients to stimulate oracular dreams. The issue for the historian is not epistemology but the conceptual world of the people writing the texts."
- David W. Suter (Mediators)

These texts, which evolved into Hekhalot literature, were evidently written by scribes familiar with folk traditions of magic to compete with the more learned rabbis.

"The experiences described in the Hekhalot literature do not seem much like mysticism. There is no thought of mystical union. God is nearly as remote in the heavenly throne room as he is on earth. Nor is Hekhalot esotericism merely magic: it includes visionary experiences atypical of magic and often seems to be functioning in the context of a community. I propose therefore that the most illuminating framework for these experiences is shamanism."
"The clearest example of an initiatory disintegration and reintegration in the Hekhalot literature is found in one of its latest strata: the description of the transformation of the mortal Enoch into the angel Metatron in 3 Enoch 3-15 (paras. 4-19). Enoch's experience is much like that of the shamans:"
- James R. Davila, "Hekhalot Literature and Mysticism"

Later Writings

2 Enoch

"2 Enoch, or the Slavonic Apocalypse of Enoch, was written late first century C.E. in Egypt by a Jew. It survives only in late Old Slavonic manuscripts. It may have been composed originally in Aramaic or Hebrew, later being translated into Greek, and later still being translated into Old Slavonic. It is an amplification of Gen 5:21-32 (from Enoch to the Flood). Major theological themes include:


(1) God created the world out of nothing (24:2);
(2) seven heavens (30:2-3) and angelic hosts;
(3) God created the souls of men before the foundation of the earth (23:5);
(4) abodes of heaven and hell are already prepared for righteous and sinners; and
(5) ethical teachings, which at times parallel those of the NT and Proverbs."
- Craig A. Evans, Noncanonical Writings and New Testament Interpretation, (1992) p. 23

3 Enoch

"3 Enoch 1-16 [is] a work that existed by the 9th century C.E., and that obviously contains earlier traditions."
- James Davila, "Enoch as a Divine Mediator"

"3 Enoch, or the Hebrew Apocalypse of Enoch, was supposedly written by Rabbi Ishmael the 'high priest' after his visionary ascension into heaven (d. 132 C.E.). Although it contains a few Greek and Latin loan words, there is no reason to suspect that the original language of 3 Enoch was anything other than Hebrew. Whereas some of the traditions of 3 Enoch may be traced back to the time of Rabbi Ishmael, and even earlier, the date of composition is probably closer to the fifth or sixth centuries. It was probably written in or near Babylon. The book may be divided into the following four major parts:


(1) The ascension of Ishmael (chaps. 1-2);
(2) Ishmael meets the exalted Enoch (chaps. 3-16);
(3) a description of the heavenly household (chaps. 17-40); and
(4) the marvels of heaven (chaps. 41-48)."
- Craig A. Evans, Noncanonical Writings and New Testament Interpretation, (1992) p. 24

"Here are a few examples of parallels between the two works [1 Enoch and 3 Enoch]:

There is a story or stories about precious metals and how they will not avail their users and those who make idols from them (1 Enoch 52; 65:6-8; 67:4-7 // 3 Enoch 5:7-14). 

One of the characters is a hostile angel named Azaz'el/Aza'el (1 Enoch 54:5; 55:4; 69:2 // 3 Enoch 4:6; 5:9);
Enoch ascends to heaven in a storm chariot (1 Enoch 52:1; 70:1-3; // 3 Enoch 6:1; 7:1);
Enoch is transformed into an angel (1 Enoch 71:11-17 // 3 Enoch 9:1-5; 15:1-2);
Enoch as an exalted angel is enthroned in heaven (1 Enoch 55:4; 61:8; 62:1-5; 69:29 // 3 Enoch 10:1-3; 16:1);
and he receives a revelation of cosmological secrets of creation (1 Enoch 69:16-26 // 3 Enoch 13:1-2)."
- James Davila, "Enoch as a Divine Mediator"

"...The parallels between the Similitudes and 3 Enoch 3-15 are centered around eight elements in both pericopae:
(1.) The heroes of the work (Rabbi Ishmael and Enoch: a biblical character and an extra-biblical character)
(2.) Angelology (good and evil angels)
(3.) Enoch / Metatron versus the 'elect one' 'the son of man'
(4.) The throne and the Shekinah
(5.) Eschatology
(6.) The oath / power inherent in letters
(7.) The heavenly ascent and
(8.) Wisdom."
- Bankole Davies-Browne, "Abstract 3 - Enoch and the Similitudes of Enoch"

The Secrets: A Separate Tradition

"...The ONLY...geographical landmarks in 'Original Enoch' refer to Galilee!  In I En.6, the 'angels, the children of heaven...descended into Ardos, which is the summit of Hermon.'  "In 13.7, Enoch has been sent to deliver imprecations against the fallen angels and offer their prayers for forgiveness. 'And I went and sat down upon the waters of Dan - in Dan which is on the southwest of Hermon - and I read their memorial prayers until I fell asleep.' (Peter's Confession in Mk.8.27-30 is delivered in the environs of Caesarea Philippi, on the southwest approach to Hermon.)  "In 13.8-9 Enoch's story continues, 'I came unto them while they were conferring together in Leya'el, which is between Lebanon and Sanzer...' Though 'Sanzer' is uncertain, apparently 'Leya'el' represented the Valley of Jezreel in Galilee."
- Philip B. Lewis (CrossTalk)

The similitudes of Enoch do not contain geographical markers and "could have been added to I Enoch virtually anywhere except Qumran (where they are absent)."
- Mahlon Smith (CrossTalk)

"In the Book of Enoch the arcane wisdom is said to have been betrayed to mankind by fallen angels, but a Talmudic tradition claims that God whispered it to Moses on Mount Sinai. According to this tradition its secrets were then imparted to seventy elders who thereafter transmitted them orally to their successors."
- David Conway, Ritual Magic

"One of the most remarkable features of 1 Enoch is that the law revealed to Moses on Mt. Sinai plays almost no part in it at all. It could be objected that it would be more surprising if it did have a role, since 1 Enoch is, of course, about Enoch who lived before the flood (see Gen 5:21-24) and thus long before the law was revealed. The argument would be that the authors of 1 Enoch were consistent about their pseudepigraphic attribution of the material to Enoch and therefore did not commit the anachronism of having him teach and obey the law of Moses.  "But there is a flaw in that argument because at least two places in the book should mention the law revealed on Mt. Sinai. The two places are in the two principal apocalypses, the Apocalypse of Weeks and the Animal Apocalypse. Both of these revelations cover the period when Israel was in the wilderness and, according to the Pentateuch, received the covenantal law."
- James C. Vanderkam

While the Apocalypse of Weeks mentions the law of Moses, There is "nothing added to suggest its importance or character". In the Animal Apocalypse the law of Moses is even less evident:

"And that sheep (= Moses) went up to the summit of a high rock, and the Lord of the sheep sent it to them. And after this I saw the Lord of the sheep standing before them, and his appearance (was) terrible and majestic, and all those sheep saw him and were afraid of him. And all of them were afraid and trembled before him; and they cried out after that sheep with them which was in their midst: 'We cannot stand before our Lord, nor look at him.' And that sheep which led them again went up to the summit of that rock; and the sheep began to be blinded and to go astray from the path which it had shown to them, but that sheep did not know."
- 1 Enoch 89:29-32

"Nothing is said here about God's giving the law to Moses; the only hint of it comes as the writer describes the straying of the sheep: they departed from the path Moses had shown them (see also v. 33). The aspects of the Sinai event that were more interesting than the law itself were the frightening appearance of the Lord and the fact that the people, right at that spot, made and worshiped the golden calf."

"The law is mentioned elsewhere in 1 Enoch (e.g., 5:4; 63:12 seems to be referring to a different law; law is used several times for the course of luminaries in chaps. 72-82 [e.g. 79:1-2]; 99:2 speaks of sinners who 'distort the eternal law' but it is not clear what this law is [cf. 104:10]; 108:1 mentions those who 'keep the law in the last days'). But the law is never identified as the law of Moses (or something of the sort); a more common usage of the term is for the laws of nature. This is astounding when one considers how important the judgment is in 1 Enoch and how often the writers speak of righteous, doing what is upright, etc. The Torah is also never mentioned in 2 Enoch."
- James C. Vanderkam

"And I saw there something horrible: I saw neither a heaven above nor a firmly founded earth, but a place chaotic and horrible. And there I saw seven stars of the heaven bound together in it, like great mountains and burning with fire. Then I said: 'For what sin are they bound, and on what account have they been cast in hither?' Then said Uriel, one of the holy angels, who was with me, and was chief over them, and said: 'Enoch, why dost thou ask, and why art thou eager for the truth? These are of the number of the stars of heaven, which have transgressed the commandment of the Lord, and are bound here till ten thousand years, the time entailed by their sins, are consummated.' And from thence I went to another place, which was still more horrible than the former, and I saw a horrible thing: a great fire there which burnt and blazed, and the place was cleft as far as the abyss, being full of great descending columns of fire: neither its extent or magnitude could I see, nor could I conjecture. Then I said: 'How fearful is the place and how terrible to look upon!' Then Uriel answered me, one of the holy angels who was with me, and said unto me: 'Enoch, why hast thou such fear and affright?' And I answered: 'Because of this fearful place, and because of the spectacle of the pain.' And he said unto me: 'This place is the prison of the angels, and here they will be imprisoned for ever.'"
- 1 Enoch 21:1-10

"The continuity between the fall of the angels, the first destruction of the world, their imprisonment, and the final judgement and end is explicit here and in other passages:"
- Colin Low, Liber Logaeth

"From the days of the slaughter and destruction and death of the giants, from the souls of whose flesh the spirits, having gone forth, shall destroy without incurring judgement -thus shall they destroy until the day of the consummation, the great judgement in which the age shall be 2 consummated, over the Watchers and the godless, yea, shall be wholly consummated."
- 1 Enoch 16:1-2a

"There is a strong probability that the seven stars 'burning like great mountains' are identical with the seven evil demons of Assyrio-Babylonian sorcery:"
- Colin Low, Liber Logaeth

"Destructive storms (and) evil winds are they,
An evil blast that heraldeth the baneful storm,
An evil blast, forerunner of the baneful storm,
They are mighty children, mighty sons,
Heralds of the Pestilence,
Throne-bearers of Ninkigal,
They are the flood which rushesth through the land.
Seven gods of the broad heaven,
Seven gods of the broad earth,
Seven robber gods are they.
Seven gods of might,
Seven evil gods,
Seven evil demons,
Seven evil demons of oppression,
Seven in heaven and seven on earth."

"There are many incantations and exorcisms against the terrible seven:"
- Colin Low, Liber Logaeth

"Spirits that minish the land, Of giant strength,
Of giant strength and giant tread,
Demons (like) raging bulls, great ghosts,
Ghosts that break through all houses,
Demons that have no shame,
Seven are they!
Knowing no care,
They grind the land like corn;
Knowing no mercy,
They rage against mankind;
They spill their blood like rain
Devouring their flesh (and) sucking their veins,
Where the images of the gods are, there they quake (?)
In the Temple of Nabu, who fertilizeth the shoots of wheat.
They are demons full of violence,
Ceaselessly devouring blood."

"The evil giant offspring of the Nephilim in Jewish legend were also noted for their vast appetites, eating thousands of animals a day, and even human flesh (obviously a memory of large sacrificial offerings). The 'seven evil sons of Ea' described on ancient clay tablets are enumerated as the South Wind, a dragon with mouth agape, a grim leopard that carries off young, a terrible serpent, a furious beast, an evil windstorm and one that cannot be identified because of damage to the clay tablet. It is possible that these seven evil sons of Ea reappear in the Apocalypse, firstly as the seven angels with seven trumpets whose sounding progressively causes terrible events to occur that mark the end of the world, and also the 'seven angels with seven plagues' carrying bowls containing the wrath of God."
- Colin Low, Liber Logaeth

The Enochian Tradition in Literature

There was a substantial Zoroastrian Influence on Judaism when Jewish exiles were exposed to the Persian religion during the Babylonian captivity.

"Some Jews adopted Enochian tradition in Babylon during the Exile and brought it back to Canaan when Cyrus gave them leave to Return. The Enochian Jews were detested by the priesthood in Jerusalem, and they were forced to 'flee' into the desert before 300 BCE. Naturally, they supported the Maccabees during the uprising of 165 BCE. The Enochians at Qumran 'updated' the text to include Judah the Hammer in the big story."
"The last of the Essene stragglers buried it [the secret book] in Cave IV at Qumran c.70 CE. The urban Christians and Jews of the Near East rejected it. The authors of the Apocalypse rewrote and retitled it, but they didn't understand the heptadic structure of the original lines, the arrangement of sevens. (The Revelation of St John is pure gibberish, a sloppy rehash of Babylonian myths and legends.) Only the students of the merkavah (in Babylonia) possessed the key to the Enochian mystery."
- Brian , "ENOCH The Greatest Story Never Told"

"In the Qumran literature, God and the archangel Michael are arrayed against Belial in a struggle between good and evil that will culminate in a great eschatological battle involving both angelic and human forces, to be followed, at least according to one source, by a messianic age. D. [Maxwell J. Davidson, "Angels at Qumran: A Comparative Study of 1 Enoch 1-36, 72-108 and Sectarian Writings from Qumran", Journal for the Study of the Pseudepigrapha Supplement Series 11; Sheffield: JSOT Press, 1992] finds the classification of cosmic dualism inappropriate for the Enochic literature, however. The fall of the angels is dealt with promptly by the imprisonment of the offenders, who are to be judged at the end of time. While both groups relate the presence of evil in the world to angels, in the Enochic literature it is the disobedience of the Watchers that is the cause. In the Qumran literature, however, Belial is responsible for evil and seems to have been created for that role by God. The Qumran literature also reflects an 'inaugurated eschatology' in which the members of the community are already in association with the angels, while in 1 Enoch the seer alone comes into contact with angels. In the latter case, revelation is mediated by angels through Enoch, a function replaced by the authoritative interpretation of scripture in the distinctive Qumran pesharim.

"'Angels at Qumran' finds common elements between the two bodies of literature that suggest that the Qumran community was interested in 1 Enoch for its grounding in Jewish monotheism as well as the ideas and literature of the Hebrew Scriptures, for the 'sect mentality' evident in both groups of literature, for the eschatological anticipation of God's judgment and blessing, and for the solar calendar found in the Astronomical Book of Enoch and used in the Qumran community."

"It is difficult to imagine how the members of the Qumran sect could have read of the sins of the angels in 1 Enoch without making the connection with their own polemic against the priesthood."
- David W. Suter, Ioudaios Review, Vol. 3.019, July 1993

Enoch's description of the punishment prepared for the fallen angels has clear parallels with the chaotic void in the Necronomicon.

"...The Book of Enoch has always been of great significance to Freemasons, and...certain rituals dating back to long before Bruce's time [1730-1794] identified Enoch himself with Thoth, the Egyptian god of wisdom."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

Enoch's Journey to Heaven

"Written both as a personal testament and as a historic review, the Ethiopic Book of Enoch, whose earliest title was probably The Words of Enoch, describes his journey to Heaven as well as to the four corners of Earth."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

The Venerable Bede, an eighth-century English theologian and historian, wrote that "the seven heavens are (1) the Air, (2) the Ether, (3) Olympus, (4) the Element of Fire, (5) the Firmament, (6) the Angelical Region, and (7) the Realm of the Trinity.""
- Richard L. Thompson, Alien Identities - Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena

The First Heaven

As recounted in 2 Enoch (The Book of the Secrets of Enoch), "this quite extraordinary tale begins with the unexpected arrival of the two 'very tall' men, with radiant faces and raiments that have 'the appearance of feathers', who enter Enoch's home and demand that he go with them. Having made his departure, the righteous patriarch is then taken up on to the wings of these two 'men' who carry him off to heaven."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 152-153

"It seems that when the prophet Enoch was 'taken up', he saw the air and then the ether. Then he reached the first heaven, where 'two hundred angels rule the stars'..."
- Richard L. Thompson, Alien Identities - Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena

"On approaching the paradisical realm, Enoch is allowed to rest temporarily on a moving cloud, and here he gazes out over 'the treasures of the snow and ice' and espies 'the angels who guard their terrible store-places'. Also set out before him is 'a very great sea, greater than the earthly sea'."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 152-153

The Second Heaven

"Moving on to the Second Heaven, Enoch is abhorred to find angelic prisoners 'suspended', awaiting some form of eternal punishment. This made me recall the inhumane manner in which Shemyaza, the leader of the two hundred rebel Watchers, had been suspended upside down for his crimes against humanity. Those angels who guarded these poor, wretched souls are themselves 'gloomy in appearance, more than the darkness of the earth'. Seeing the mortal, the shackled prisoners cry out for the patriarch to pray for them, to which he responds: 'Who am I, a mortal man, that I should pray for angels?'"
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 153

The Third Heaven

"In the third heaven, he saw the Tree of Life, with four streams, of honey, milk, oil, and wine, flowing from its roots. The Place of the Righteous is in this heaven and the Terrible Place where the wicked are tortured. There was also the 'place on which God rests when he comes into Paradise'."
- Richard L. Thompson, Alien Identities - Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena

It was "a place such as has never been known for the goodliness of its appearance. And I saw all the trees of beautiful colors and their fruits ripe and fragrant, and all kinds of food which they produced, springing up with delightful fragrance. And in the midst (there is) the tree of life, in that place, on which God rests, when He comes into Paradise. And this tree cannot be described for its excellence and sweet odor. And it is beautiful more than any created thing."
- 2 Enoch

"The Garden of Eden appears to have more in common with an Israeli kibbutz, or with the gardens of a Christian monastery, than with an ethereal kingdom peopled by angelic hosts. Moreover, the reference to the Tree of Life on which God 'rests, when He comes into paradise' is strangely reminiscent of the Tree of All Remedies, or the Tree of All Seeds, on which the Simurgh bird rests in Persian tradition. This heavenly tree is said to have been placed in the center of the Vourukasha Sea, which is itself located in the Airyana Vaejah, the Iranian domain of the immortals. Curiously enough, like the Garden of Eden, the Vourukasha Sea is seen as the gathering point of all water, fed by a mighty river named Harahvaiti. From this waterway come two separate rivers that flow out towards the east and west and spread throughout the whole of the land. They then return to the sea, their waters cleansed of any impurities."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 154

"Enoch's third heaven...seems very similar to the region known as Ilavrta-varsa, which is described in the Fifth Canto of the Bhagavata Purana. Thus, in Ilavrta-varsa there are four gigantic trees, and four rivers flow from their roots, including a river of honey. There is also a city called Brahmapuri, which is visited by Lord Brahma and which may correspond to the 'place on which God rests when he comes into Paradise'."  "According to the Fifth Canto of the Bhagavata Purana, Brahmapuri and the residences of eight prominent Devas [administrators of the Universe] are situated on the top of a mountain in Ilavrta-varsa called Meru, and therefore Mount Meru corresponds to the Greek Olympus. Thus, if Ilavrta-varsa corresponds to Enoch's third heaven, then it is also reasonable to say that this third heaven corresponds to the Greek Olympus."
- Richard L. Thompson, Alien Identities - Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena

"I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know - God knows. And I know that this man - whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows - was caught up to Paradise. He heard inexpressible things, things that man is not permitted to tell."
- 2 Corinthians 12:2-4 (the apostle Paul describing his own experience)

2 Cor 12:1ff "while it does seem to point to a heavenly ascent tradition, its connection is only very superficial as it contains no angel guide, no divine throne, no revelation {unless one counts v9), no vision of God, etc."
- Paula Gooder (Mediators)

The Fourth Heaven

"In the fourth heaven, he saw luminaries, wondrous creatures, and the Host of the Lord."
- Richard L. Thompson, Alien Identities - Ancient Insights into Modern UFO Phenomena

"In the Fourth Heaven Enoch enters what appears to have been another observatory, where he is able to study the 'comings and goings forth and all the rays of the light of the sun and moon'. Here he is able to measure the descent of the celestial bodies and compute their light, for he says that the sun 'has a light seven times greater than the moon'. He also realizes that there are 'four great stars' with another 8,000 stars in their charge. Here, once again, the angels' apparent interest in astronomy is reaffirmed. The study of the stars is, of course, listed among the forbidden sciences revealed to mortal kind by the rebel Watchers."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 154-155

The Fifth Heaven

"...Enoch finds the two hundred Watchers who have transgressed the laws of heaven by revealing the forbidden arts and taking wives from among the Daughters of Men. For their misconduct, they have been incarcerated like lowly prisoners. As the mortal passes by they, too, call out for him to help their claim of innocence. These fallen angels are described as grigori - the Greek for Watchers. They are said to have looked 'like men', and to have borne a height 'greater than that of the giants (i.e. their Nephilim offspring)'. Enoch also recalls how 'their countenances were withered', bringing to mind the way in which the mythical Iranian kings would lose the royal farr ['glory'] if they turned their backs on the path of truth."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 154-155

The Sixth Heaven

"In the Sixth Heaven Enoch encounters seven bands of angels whose faces, he says, were 'shining more than the rays of the sun. They were resplendent, and there is no difference in their countenance, or their manner, or the style of their clothing'. Like the angels in the First Heaven, these shining beings watch 'the revolution of the stars, and the changes of the moon, and the revolutions of the sun', even further evidence that the term 'Watchers' relates not to their observation of mortal kind, but to their observation of the movement of stars and their study of the cycles of time. Here the angels 'superintend the good or evil condition of the world', a reference perhaps to the study of climatology and seismology, and the way in which it affects the earth. These Watchers also 'arrange teachings, and instructions, and sweet speaking, and singing, and all kinds of glorious praise', for 'these are the archangels who are appointed over the angels'."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 154-155

The Seventh Heaven

"In the seventh and final heaven Enoch witnesses whole hosts of great archangels, Cherubim, Seraphim, and all sorts of incorporeal powers that attend the throne of God. In a separate rendition of this story, the patriarch finds himself alongside a wall built of 'crystals' that is surrounded by mysterious 'tongues of fire'. Its 'groundwork' appears to be made of the same crystal-like stone, while of the building's interior, he recalls: 'Its ceiling was like the path of the stars and the lightnings ... A flaming fire surrounded the walls, and its portals blazed with fire. The temperature here also seemed contradictory, for it appeared to him 'as hot as fire and [as] cold as ice', all at the same time. There were apparently 'no delights of life therein', in other words he found no furniture or decoration, showing the apparent spareness and emptiness of this 'house'. Yet then fear overcame Enoch, who suddenly found himself trembling and quaking at the awesomeness of the strange sights around him."

"Moving quickly on to a second 'house' with a similar appearance, which 'excelled in splendor and magnificence and extent', Enoch now perceived a 'lofty throne' of crystal. Upon this were moving wheels as bright as the 'shining sun', and from beneath it appeared to come 'streams of flaming fire', so bright that he could not look upon them. And 'sat thereon' the throne was the Great Glory, whose 'raiment shone more brightly than the sun and was whiter than any snow'."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 155-156

"None of the angels could enter and could behold His face by reason of, the magnificence and glory, and no flesh could behold Him. The flaming fire was round about Him, and a great fire stood before Him, and none around could draw nigh Him."
- 2 Enoch

Note that in Zoroastrianism, fire was associated with the divine light of God (Ahura Mazda).

"There is even mention of the patriarch visiting an eighth, ninth and tenth heaven, yet this section has the look of a later interpolation hoping to emphasize to the reader that Enoch ends his life in paradise, in accord with the statements in the Book of Genesis concerning his translation to heaven."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 156-157

The Eighth Heaven, called Muzaloth [signs of the zodiac/planets] was a place of the changing of the Season.
The Ninth Heaven, called Kuvachim, contained the Houses of the Signs of the Zodiac.
The last, Tenth Heaven is called Aravoth from which Enoch recognized the constellation whence came our first ancestors, the star Altair (in Aquila,) or as seen in The Book of Enoch and his translation into Heaven in a later chapter.

The Structure of the Universe

Heavenly Tablets

"And after that I saw all the secrets of the heavens, and how the kingdom is divided, and how the actions of men are weighed in the balance. And there I saw the mansions of the elect and the mansions of the holy, and mine eyes saw there all the sinners being driven from thence which deny the name of the Lord of Spirits, and being dragged off: and they could not abide because of the punishment which proceeds from the Lord of Spirits.  And I saw the chambers of the sun and moon, whence they proceed and whither they come again, and their glorious return, and how one is superior to the other, and their stately orbit, and how they do not leave their orbit, and they add nothing to their orbit and they take nothing from it, and they keep faith with each other, in accordance with the oath by which they are bound together."
- 1 Enoch 41:1-2, 5b -6a

"In the Book of Enoch it was the archangel Uriel ('God is my light') who showed Enoch the secrets of the Sun (solstices and equinoxes, 'six portals' in all) and the 'laws of the Moon' (including intercalation), and the twelve constellations of the stars, 'all the workings of heaven'. And in the end of the schooling, Uriel gave Enoch - as Shamash and Adad had given Enmeduranki - 'heavenly tablets', instructing him to study them carefully and note 'every individual fact' therein. Returning to Earth, Enoch passed this knowledge to his old son, Methuselah."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

The knowledge granted Enoch included:

"All the workings of heaven, earth and the seas, and all the elements, their passages and goings and the thunderings of the thunder, and of the Sun and the Moon; the goings and changings of the stars; the seasons, years, days, and hours."
- The Book of the Secrets of Enoch

"The visions obtained by the heaven journey etc. have in their contents the structure of heavens (or the throne/abode of God etc.) -- almost necessarily. But the same structure is underlying many cultic practices; first of all, the temple (tabernacle) structures and calendar (for the calendar is always based on the presupposed structure of the Universe). So, there is a basic unity between all the three -- visions' content, temple structure, and calendar. They are always parts of the same tradition, that is, the reality they are referring to is always intermediated by this tradition."
- Basil Lourie (CrossTalk)

"The Book of Enoch, like so many canonical books of Christians and Jews, is an allegorical and metaphorical document about the calendrical battles fought for so many years between those who insisted that holy days be calculated according to the ancient astronomy and those who insisted that holy days be calculated according to the improved mathematical understandings of solar-lunar-astral periodicities. The 'Watchers,' 'Archers,' or 'Tetramorphs,' whom Ezekiel and the early Christian astronomers expressed as Lion, Ox, Man, and Eagle, are the four 'Guardian Stars' (Regulus, Aldebaran, Fomalhaut, and Antares) which fixed the two solstices and the two equinoxes to the wheel of time, the Zodiac or Ecliptic, back when archaic astronomy first was learning (the hard way) about precession of the equinoxes."
- Lee Perry, Jesus Silenced (private correspondence)

Star
Constellation
Magnitude
Description

Regulus

Leo 1.36

Latin meaning "The Little King"' reflecting a common belief that the star ruled the affairs of heaven

Aldebaran

Taurus 0.87

Arabic Al Dabaran meaning "The Follower" - the brightest member of the Hyades which follows the Pleiades across the heavens

Fomalhaut

Pisces Austrinus 1.17

Arabic Fum al Hut meaning "The Fish's Mouth"

Antares

Scorpio 1.06

Greek anti ares meaning "The Rival of Mars" due to its red color or association of Scorpius with Mars in astrology

The Astronomical Book in 1 Enoch "explains the structure of the universe by describing the course of the sun in a 364-day year and of the moon in a 354-day year. The same two years (solar and lunar) with the same numbers of days are combined and correlated in a number of the calendrical documents found among the Dead Sea Scrolls. The sun and moon pass through gates at the eastern and western sides of the heavens. Other sections of the booklet speak about the stars and winds and other related topics. All of the created order is under angelic and ulitimately under divine control.".
- James C. Vanderkam

"...When the righteous dead are mentioned in 1 Enoch or Jubilees, they seem to be destined for a blissful existence as disembodied souls, a notion so un-Jewish that it is presumed to be a Greek idea. No particular sect is identified in these works although they were used extensively at Qumran."
- Chris King, "The Apocalyptic Tradition"

Angelic Transformation
"...The chapters of 'l Enoch'...show us that the angelic forms of dead heroes, martyrs, and patriarchs were viewed as fulfillments of the prophecies in Daniel, since Enoch quotes that terminology in describing them. The Parables of Enoch contains several references to angelic transformation. In chapter, Enoch ascends to heaven while reciting hymns and blessings as do the Merkabah mystics, where he is overcome with the splendor and glory of the throne rooms. His face changes on account of the vision, which evidently reflects the experience of the prophecy that 'those who are wise shall shine as the stars' (Dan 11:2), because 1 Enoch 62:15 states that the elect shall shine as stars and be clothed with garments of glory. The Parables of Enoch thus describes the righteous as dwelling with the angels after death: 'So there my eyes saw their dwelling places with the holy angels, and their resting places with the holy ones' (lEn 39:5). So too in the parts of 1 Enoch attested at Qumran, Enoch promises the righteous that they 'will shine like the lights of heaven' (lEn 104:2) and 'make a great joy like the angels of heaven' (104:4). Thus, it seems safe to assume that when Enoch is transformed into a 'son of man' in 1 Enoch 71 he is being rewarded with angelic status, as Daniel 12 predicts. It might also be that much later Jesus 'Christ' was viewed as similarly rewarded on account of his martyr's death."
- Alan F. Segal, "The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran" in Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls (James H. Charlesworth, Ed. - 1992), p. 306

"And it happened after this that his living name was raised up before that Son of Man and to the Lord from among those who dwell upon the earth."
- 1 Enoch 70:1

"The journey is taken by Enoch's name, not precisely his soul, again reflecting a level of mystical speculation that predates the importation of the Platonic notion of a soul."
- Alan F. Segal, "The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran" in Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls (James H. Charlesworth, Ed. - 1992), p. 306

Metatron
"This Enoch, whose flesh was turned to flame, his veins to fire, his eye-lashes to flashes of lightning, his eye-balls to flaming torches, and whom God placed on a throne next to the throne of glory, received after this heavenly transformation the name Metatron."
- Gershom G. Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (1941/1961) p. 67

(This description was taken from 3 Enoch 15:1b-2; para. 19)

"...After the series of transformations Enoch undergoes, both physical and spiritual, the status accorded to him and the knowledge granted him, as well and the name, the garb and the crown, the image of Metatron becomes like that of God Himself."
- Joseph Dan, The Ancient Jewish Mysticism (1993), p. 119

In 2 Enoch, the patriarch is made "like one of His glorious ones" (i.e., like an archangel, not YHWEH), although Metatron is never mentioned this book.

"Metatron is a Hebrew corruption of either the Greek 'metadromos,' 'he who pursues with a vengeance,' or of 'meta ton thronon', 'nearest to the Divine Throne.'"
- Robert Graves and Raphael Patai, Hebrew Myths: The Book of Genesis

Sanhedrin 38b refers to Metatron "which his name is like the name of his Lord".

"The rabbis often call God's principal angel Metatron. The term 'Metatron' in rabbinic literature and Jewish mysticism is probably not a proper name but a title adapted from the Greek word metathronos, meaning 'one who stands after or behind the throne'. If so, it represents a rabbinic softening of the more normal Hellenistic term synthronos, meaning 'one who is with the throne,' sharing enthronement or acting for the properly throned authority. The rabbis would have changed the preposition from one connoting equality (syn-, 'with') to one connoting inferiority (meta-, 'after or behind') in order to reduce the heretical implications of calling God's principal helping angel his synthronos."
- Alan F. Segal, "The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran" in Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls (James H. Charlesworth, Ed. - 1992), pp. 310-311

"It is quite possible that the word Metatron was chosen on strictly symbolical grounds and represents one of the innumerable secret names which abound in the Hekhaloth texts no less than in the gnostical writings or in the magical papyri. Originally formed apparently in order to replace the name Yahoel as a vox mystica, it gradually usurped its place. It is interesting, by the way, that the spelling in the oldest quotations and manuscripts is - a fact which is usually overlooked; this would seem to suggest that the word was pronounced Meetatron rather than Metatron. As a transcription of the Greek epsilon in the word Meta, the yod in the name would appear to be quite superfluous."
- Gershom G. Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (1941/1961) p. 70

The Pre-existent Messiah

Like Lights in the Heaven

"A feature of chaps. 37-71 [the Similitudes of 1 Enoch] is the frequent reference to a person who is called 'the righteous one', 'the chosen one', 'the messiah', and 'the son of man' (for this last title three different formulations are used); at the end of the section (chap. 71) Enoch is identified as that son of man who functions as the eschatological judge, a judge who reverses the fortunes of his oppressed people and of their oppressors who are termed 'the kings and the mighty'".
- James C. Vanderkam

"At the end of the Parables of Enoch (lEn 70-71), Enoch is mystically transformed into the figure of the 'son of man' on the throne: 'My whole body mollified and my spirit transformed' (lEn 71:1). This is an extraordinarily important event, as it underlines the importance of mystic transformation between the adept and the angelic vice-regent of God, giving a plausible explanation of how the sectarians that produced the visions in Daniel expected to be transformed into stars. Indeed, it is possible to say that 1 Enoch 71 gives us the experience of an adept undergoing the astral transformation prophesied in Daniel 12:2, albeit in the name of a pseudepigraphical hero."

"Unfortunately, 1 Enoch 71 is not evidenced at Qumran and may not have been known by the Qumran covenanters, since they appear to have substituted another group of chapters in place of the Parables of Enoch, of which 1 Enoch 71 is the climax."
- Alan F. Segal, "The Risen Christ and the Angelic Mediator Figures in Light of Qumran" in Jesus and the Dead Sea Scrolls (James H. Charlesworth, Ed. - 1992), pp. 305, 306

"Among the most important objects which Metatron describes to Rabbi Ishmael ['Midrash to Solomon's Proverbs'] is the cosmic veil or curtain before the throne, which conceals the glory of God from the host of angels. The idea of such a veil appears to be very old; references to it are to be found already in Aggadic passages from the second century. The existence of veils in the resplendent sphere of the aeons is also mentioned in a Coptic writing belonging to the gnostic school, the Pistis Sophia.' Now this cosmic curtain, as it is described in the Book of Enoch, contains the images of all things which since the day of creation have their pre-existing reality, as it were, in the heavenly sphere. All generations and all their lives and actions are woven into this curtain; he who sees it penetrates at the same time into the secret of Messianic redemption, for like the course of history, the final struggle and the deeds of the Messiah are already pre-existently real and visible."
- Gershom G. Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (1941/1961) p. 72

The Elect One and the Lord of Spirits

""And thus the Lord commanded the kings and the mighty and the exalted, and those who dwell on the earth, and said:
'Open your eyes and lift up your horns if ye are able to recognize the Elect One.'
And the Lord of Spirits seated him on the throne of His glory,
And the spirit of righteousness was poured out upon him,
And the word of his mouth slays all the sinners,
And all the unrighteous are destroyed from before his face.
And there shall stand up in that day all the kings and the mighty,
And the exalted and those who hold the earth,
And they shall see and recognize How he sits on the throne of his glory,
And righteousness is judged before him,
And no lying word is spoken before him."
- 1 Enoch 62:1-3

The Similitudes fall into four parts:

"'a' speaks of 'the Elect One' who is seen by Enoch (39.6), blessed by Raphael (40.5), who sits on the seat of glory, judging (45.3) and who dwells among the righteous in a transformed earth (45.4-5.

'b' describes a Son of man to whom righteousness belongs, who will open hidden store-rooms being destined to be victorious (46.3) and who removes kings and mighty ones (46.4). He is given a name by the Lord of the Spirits - 'staff for the righteous,'light of the gentiles,' and 'hope of the heartsick' (48.2-10) he 'became the Chosen One' (5), 'revealed wisdom to the righteous' (7) and appears to be the equivalent of the Messiah.

'c' describes The Elect One (again) who sits on the throne of the Lord of the Spirits (51.3) he is a risen one (5). Mountains melt before him and peace reigns when he appears (52.6,9) and judges Azaz'el (55.4). [56.5 refers to Parthians and Medes, apparantly referring to the invasions of 115-117 C.E.] In 61.5 the Elect One is 'the First Word' who has been set on the throne of judgment by the Lord of the Spirits. He is blessed by the vigilant ones (i.e. the Watchers), the holy ones in heaven, and 'all the elect ones who dwell in the garden of life' (a return to Eden?)

'd' in 62.6ff the Son of man who was concealed from the beginning sits on a throne, is the object of pleas for mercy. The righteous and elect ones shall 'eat and rest and rise with that Son of man for ever and ever.' Sinners are shamed before him (63.11). In 69.27-29 he has been revealed to the righteous, has seated himself on his throne of glory and confessions are heard by him. In 70.1 Enoch is translated before the Son of man and Lord of the Spirits, and in 71.17 the Similitudes end with 'there shall be length of days with that Son of Man and and peace to the righteous ones.'"

"IMO the distinctions between a-c and b-d are clear. They indicate two stages of interpolation, b-d with its Son of Man imagery being inserted in an a-c complex which had already been developed around the figure of The Elect One. The Son of Man (b-d) passages reflect Christian development, while both echo imagery from enthronement rites associated with the Feast of Booths in Judaism."
- Philip B. Lewis

Future Ideal Figures

When promoted to the status of Son of Man, Enoch embodies three Future Ideal Figures:

(1) "The one like a son of man in Daniel 7:13-14. He is called Son of Man, or that Son of Man (three different Ethiopic phrases are involved). A nice example is in 1 Enoch 46:1-3, where the echoes of the heavenly scene in Daniel are clear. Whatever we make of the original meaning of Daniel 7, that Son of Man in the Similitudes is clearly an eschatological redeemer. (Other references to the Son of Man in the Similitudes are: 48:2; 62:5, 7, 9, 14; 63:11; 69:26, 27, 29; 70:1; 71:14, 17).
- James Davila, "Enoch as a Divine Mediator"

"...4Q491 frag. 11...shows that the Qumran community entertained the idea of the enthronement, exaltation, and even divinization of a human being. Likewise, the enthroned Son of Man in the Similitudes of Enoch 'participates in God's unique sovereignty' rather than sharing in God's 'identity.' He, like Jesus, is worshiped as God's agent, not God per se.".
- Adela Yarbro Collins

(2) "The (Davidic) Messiah. The title Messiah (i.e., Anointed One) is applied to the eschatological redeemer twice in the Similitudes (48:10 and 52:4). The language of the first passage echoes Psalm 2:2 and thus evokes the messianic traditions drawn in the Second Temple period out of the royal psalms.

(3) "The Servant of God in Deutero-Isaiah. This mysterious figure appears in the four servant songs in Isaiah 40-55 (roughly, Isa 42:1-7; 49:1-6; 50:4-9; 52:13-53:12) and two titles of the echatological redeemer in the Similitudes allude to him: the Righteous One (1 Enoch 38:2?; 47:1, 4; 53:6), and the Elect/Chosen One (39:6; 40:5; 45:3, 4; 48:6; 49:2, 4; 51:3, 5; 52:6, 9; 53:6; 55:4; 61:5, 8, 10; 62:1). The Servant is called the Righteous One in Isa 53:11 and is called chosen in Isa 42:1. He is also a light to the nations in Isa 42:6 and 49:6 (cf. 1 Enoch 48:4) and the shame of the kings of the world before the Servant (Isa 52:15) is echoed in 1 Enoch 62:9-10. It's interesting to note that, although the grievous suffering of the Servant is central to the figure in Isaiah, these sufferings are ignored in the Similitudes."
- James Davila, "Enoch as a Divine Mediator"

"At that hour, that Son of Man was given a name, in the presence of the Lord of the Spirits, the Before-Time, even before the creation of the sun and the moon, before the creation of the stars, he was given a name in the presence of the Lord of the Spirits."
- 1 Enoch 48:4

The Messiah/Son of Man "first appears as preexistent in the apocryphal First Book of Enoch, which was originally written in Hebrew or Aramaic about 150 BC. From that period on, the concept of the Messiah who was created in the six days of Creation, or even prior to them or who was born at variously stated subsequent dates and was then hidden to await his time, became a standard feature of Jewish Messianic eschatology."
- Raphael Patai, The Messiah Texts

"From the beginning the Son of Man was hidden,
And the Most High has preserved him
In the presence of His might,
And revealed him to the elect."
- 1 Enoch 62:7

The Sons of God

The Sumerian Watchers

"...Man and his early civilizations had a profoundly different mentality from our own, that in fact men and women were not conscious as are we, were not responsible for their actions, and therefore cannot be given the credit or blame for anything that was done over these vast millennia of time; that instead each person had a part of his nervous system that was divine, by which he was ordered about like any slave, a voice or voices which indeed were what we call volition and empowered what they commanded and were related to the hallucinated voices of others in a carefully established hierarchy."

"...The astonishing consistency from Egypt to Peru, from Ur to Yucatan, wherever civilizations arose, of death practices and idolatry, of divine government and hallucinated voices, all are witness to the idea of a different mentality than our own."  "The gods were in no sense 'figments of the imagination' of anyone. They were man's volition. They occupied his nervous system, probably his right hemisphere, and from stores of admonitory and receptive experience, transmuted this experience into articulated speech which then 'told' the man what to do."

"Throughout Mesopotamia, from the earliest times of Sumer and Akkad, all lands were owned by gods and men were their slaves. Of this, the cuneiform texts leave no doubt whatever. Each city-state had its own principal god, and the king was described in the very earliest written documents that we have as 'the tenant farmer of the god'."
- Julian Jaynes, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind

"... The Akkadians called their predecessors Shumerians, and spoke of the Land of Shumer.  "It was, in fact, the biblical Land of Shin'ar. It was the land whose name - Shumer - literally meant the Land of the Watchers. It was indeed the Egyptian Ta Neter - Land of the Watchers, the land from which the gods had come to Egypt."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

"It was from that planet [Nibiru], the Sumerian texts repeatedly and persistently stated, that theAnunnaki came to Earth. The term literally means 'Those Who from Heaven to Earth Came.' They are spoken of in the Bible as the Anakim, and in Chapter 6 of Genesis are also called Nephilim, which in Hebrew means the same thing: Those Who Have Come Down, from the Heavens to Earth."
- Zecharia Sitchin, Genesis Revisited

"The Anakim may have been Mycenaean Greek colonists, belonging to the 'Sea Peoples' confederation which caused Egypt such trouble in the fourteenth century B.C. Greek mythographers told of a Giant Anax ('king'), son of Heaven and Mother Earth, who ruled Anactoria (Miletus) in Asia Minor. According to Appollodorus, the disinterred skeleton of Asterius ('starry'), Anax's successor, measured ten cubits. Akakes, the plural of Nanx, was an epithet of the Greek gods in general. Talmudic commentators characteristically make the Anakim three thousand cubits tall."
- Robert Graves and Raphael Patai, Hebrew Myths: The Book of GenesisThe Egyptian Ntr

There is archaeological evidence of a strong cultural connection between Sumer and ancient Egypt.

"Ptah and the other gods were called, in Egyptian, Ntr - 'Guardian, Watcher'."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Wars of Gods and Men

During the fabled "First Time, Zep Tepi, when the gods ruled in their country: they said it was a golden age during which the waters of the abyss receded, the primordial darkness was banished, and humanity, emerging into the light, was offered the gifts of civilization. They spoke also of intermediaries between gods and men - the Urshu, a category of lesser divinities whose title meant 'the Watchers'. And they preserved particularly vivid recollections of the gods themselves, puissant and beautiful beings called the Neteru who lived on earth with humankind and exercised their sovereignty from Heliopolis and other sanctuaries up and down the Nile. Some of these Neteru were male and some female but all possessed a range of supernatural powers which included the ability to appear, at will, as men or women, or as animals, birds, reptiles, trees or plants. Paradoxically, their words and deeds seem to have reflected human passions and preoccupations. Likewise, although they were portrayed as stronger and more intelligent than humans, it was believed that they could grow sick - or even die, or be killed - under certain circumstance."
- Graham Hancock, Fingerprints of the Gods

"'Deliver thou the scribe Nebseni, whose word is truth, from the Watchers, who carry murderous knives, who possess cruel fingers, and who would slay those who are in the following of Ositis.'  May these Watchers never gain the mastery over me, and may I never fall under their knives!'

"Who are these Watchers?

"'They are Anubis and Horus, [the latter being] in the form of Horus the sightless. Others, however, say that they are the Tchatcha (sovereign princes of Osiris), who bring to nought the operations of their knives; and others say that they are the chiefs of the Sheniu chamber.
'May their knives never gain the mastery over me. May I never fall under the knives wherewith they inflict cruel tortures. For I know their names, and I know the being, Matchet, who is among them in the House of Osiris. He shooteth forth rays of light from his eye, being himself invisible, and he goeth round about heaven robed in the flames which come from his mouth, commanding Hapi, but remaining invisible himself. May I be strong on earth before Ra, may I arrive safely in the presence of Osiris. O ye who preside over your altars, let not your offerings to me be wanting, for I am one of those who follow after Nebertcher, according to the writings of Khepera. Let me fly like a hawk, let me cackle like a goose, let me lay always like the serpent-goddess Neheb-ka.'"
- The Egyptian Book of the Dead

"They had come to Egypt, the Egyptians wrote, from Ta-Ur, the 'Far/Foreign Land,' whose name Ur meant 'oldest' but could have also been the actual place name - a place will known from Mesopotamian and biblical records: the ancient city of Ur in southern Mesopotamia. And the straits of the Red Sea, which connected Mesopotamia and Egypt, were called Ta-Neter, the 'Place of the Gods,' the passage by which they had come to Egypt. That the earliest gods did come from the biblical lands of Shem is additionally borne out by the puzzling fact that the names of these olden gods were of 'Semitic' (Akkadian) derivation. Thus Ptah, which had no meaning in Egyptian, meant 'he who fashioned things by carving and opening up' in the Semitic tongues."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Wars of Gods and Men

"The Legend of Votan, who had built the first city that was the cradle of Mesoamerican civilization, was written down by Spanish chroniclers from oral Mayan traditions. The emblem of Votan, they recorded, was the serpent; 'he was a descendant of the Guardians, of the race of Can'. 'Guardians' was the meaning of the Egyptian term Neteru (i.e., 'gods'). Can, studies such as that by Zelia Nuttal (Papers of the Peabody Museum) have suggested was a variant of Canaan who was (according to the Bible) a member of the Hamitic peoples of Africa and a brother-nation of the Egyptians."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

Bene Elohim

Note that plural gods elohim appears in the earliest Hebrew texts, even though it is translated as God (El) in modern texts.

"...The sons of gods (bene ha-elohim') saw the daughters of men that they were fair..."
- Genesis 6:2a

"The sons of God (or children of God; 'bene elohim' and variants) are divine members of God's heavenly host...The title 'sons/children of God' is familiar from Ugaritic mythology, in which the gods collectively are the 'children of El'...The sons/children of God are also found in Phoenician and Ammonite inscriptions, referring to the pantheon of sub-ordinate deities, indicating that the term was widespread in the West Semitic religions."
- Oxford Companion to the Bible

"The Watchers were "a specific race of divine beings known in Hebrew as nun resh 'ayin, 'irin' (resh 'ayin, 'ir' in singular), meaning 'those who watch' or 'those who are awake', which is translated into Greek as Egrhgoroi egregoris or grigori, meaning 'watchers'. These Watchers feature in the main within the pages of pseudepigraphal and apocryphal works of Jewish origin, such as the Book of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees. Their progeny, according to Hebrew tradition, are named as nephilim, a Hebrew word meaning 'those who have fallen' or 'the fallen ones', translated into Greek as gigantez, gigantes, or 'giants' - a monstrous race featured in the Theogony of the hellenic writer Hesiod (c. 907 BC)."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 3

"The statement (Gen. 6:1) that the 'sons of God' married the daughters of men is explained of the fall of the angels, in Enoch, vi-xi, and codices, D, E F, and A of the Septuagint read frequently, for 'sons of God', oi aggeloi tou qeou ['angels of God']. Unfortunately, codices B and C are defective in Ge., vi, but it is probably that they, too, read oi aggeloi in this passage, for they constantly so render the expression 'sons of God'; cf. Job i, 6; ii, 1; xxxviii, 7; but on the other hand, see Ps. ii, 1; lxxxviii, & (Septuagint). Philo, in commenting on the passage in his treatise 'Quod Deus sit immutabilis', i, follows the Septuagint."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"Angels came late into Jewish theology, generally from the non-Jewish myths of the East. The early books of the Bible speak of some vague heavenly beings called malochim (singular, malach). Although malach is usually translated angel, its literal meaning is messenger."
- Harry Gersh, The Sacred Books of the Jews

"The angel of the LORD found Hagar near a spring in the desert; it was the spring that is beside the road to Shur."
- Genesis 16:7

"At first the angels are regarded in quite an impersonal way (Gen. xvi, 7).They are God's vice-regents and are often identified with the Author of their message (Gen. xlviii, 15-16). But while we read of 'the Angels of God' meeting Jacob (Gen. xxxii, 1) we at other times read of one who is termed 'the Angel of God' par excellence, e.g. Gen., xxxi, 11."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"But the angel of the LORD called out to him from heaven, 'Abraham! Abraham!'"
- Genesis 22:11

"It is true that, owing to the Hebrew idiom, this may mean no more than 'an angel of God', and the Septuagint renders it with or without the article at will; yet the three visitors at Mambre seem to have been of different ranks, though St. Paul (Heb. xiii, 2) regarded them all as equally angels; as the story in Ge. xiii, develops, the speaker is always 'the Lord'. Thus in the account of the Angel of the Lord who visited Gideon (Judges vi), the visitor is alternately spoken of as 'the Angel of the Lord' and as 'the Lord'. Similarly, in Judges xiii, the Angel of the Lord appears...."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"Then Manoah took a young goat, together with the grain offering, and sacrificed it on a rock to the LORD. And the LORD did an amazing thing while Manoah and his wife watched: As the flame blazed up from the altar toward heaven, the angel of the LORD ascended in the flame. Seeing this, Manoah and his wife fell with their faces to the ground. When the angel of the LORD did not show himself again to Manoah and his wife, Manoah realized that it was the angel of the LORD.  'We are doomed to die!' he said to his wife. 'We have seen God!'"
- Judges 13:19-22

"This want of clearness is particularly apparent in the various accounts of the Angel of Exodus. In Judges vi, just now referred to, the Septuagint is very careful to render the Hebrew 'Lord' by 'the Angel of the Lord'; but in the story of the Exodus it is the Lord who goes before them in the pillar of a cloud (Exod. xiii 21), and the Septuagint makes no change (cf. also Num. xiv, 14, and Neh. ix, 7-20."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"By day the LORD went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night."
- Exodus 13:21

"Yet in Exod. xiv, 19, their guide is termed 'the Angel of God. When we turn to Exod., xxxiii, where God is angry with His people for worshipping the golden calf, it is hard not to feel that it is God Himself who has hitherto been their guide, but who now refuses to accompany them any longer. God offers an angel instead, but at Moses's petition He says (14) 'My face shall go before thee', which the Septuagint reads by autoV though the following verse shows that this rendering is clearly impossible, for Moses objects: 'If Thou Thyself dost not go before us, bring us not out of this place.' But what does God mean by 'my face'? Is it possible that some angel of specially high rank is intended, as in Is. lxiii, 9 (cf. Tobias xii, 15)? May not this be what is meant by 'the Angel of God' (cf. Num. xx, 16)?"
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"He [the Lord] said, 'Surely they are my people, sons who will not be false to me'; and so he became their Savior. In all their distress he too was distressed, and the angel of his presence saved them. In his love and mercy he redeemed them; he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old. Yet they rebelled and grieved his Holy Spirit. So he turned and became their enemy and he himself fought against them."
- Isaiah 63:9-10

"The Massoretic text as well as the Vulgate of Exod. iii and xix-xx clearly represent the Supreme Being as appearing to Moses in the bush and on Mount Sinai; but the Septuagint version, while agreeing that it was God Himself who gave the Law, yet makes it 'the angel of the Lord' who appeared in the bush."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"There the angel of the LORD appeared to him in flames of fire from within a bush. Moses saw that though the bush was on fire it did not burn up. Moses thought, 'I will go over and see this strange sight--why the bush does not burn up.' When the LORD saw that he had gone over to look, God called to him from within the bush, 'Moses! Moses!'"
- Exodus 3:2-4a

"By New Testament times the Septuagint view has prevailed, and it is now not merely in the bush that the angel of the Lord, and not God Himself appears, but the angel is also the Giver of the Law (cf. Gal. iii, 19; Heb. ii, 2; Acts vii, 30)."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

"The law was put into effect through angels by a mediator"
- Galatians 3:19c

"The person of 'the angel of the Lord' finds a counterpart in the personification of Wisdom in the Sapiential books and in at least one passage (Zach. iii, 1) it seems to stand for that 'Son of Man' whom Daniel (vii, 13) saw brought before 'the Ancient of Days'. Zacharias says: 'And the Lord showed me Jesus the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan stood on His right hand to be His adversary'."
- Hugh Pope, The Catholic Encyclopedia

Unlike the "messengers" who could be mistaken for humans in the Book of Genesis, Daniel's angel was resplendent in its divinity.

"I looked up and there before me was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of the finest gold around his waist.waist. His body was like chrysolite, his face like lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and legs like the gleam of burnished bronze, and his voice like the sound of a multitude. I, Daniel, was the only one who saw the vision; the men with me did not see it, but such terror overwhelmed them that they fled and hid themselves."
- Daniel 10:5-7

"Later Biblical books developed the idea of malochim [messengers], but it wasn't until the Book of Daniel, written in the second century BC, that some of these heavenly creatures were given names. Daniel mentions Gabriel (geber is man, El is God) and Michael. The later non-canonical books built a whole hierarchy of angels, headed by Metatron, prince of the heavenly hosts."
- Harry Gersh, The Sacred Books of the Jews

"In the Hebrew writings, the term 'Heavenly Hosts' includes not only the counselors and emissaries of Jehovah, but also the celestial luminaries; and the stars, imagined in the East to be animated intelligences, presiding over human weal and woe, are identified with the more distinctly impersonated messengers or angels, who execute the Divine decrees, and whose predominance in heaven is in mysterious correspondence and relation with the powers and dominions of the earth. In Job, the Morning Stars and the Sons of God are identified; they join in the same chorus of praise to the Almighty; they are both susceptible of joy; they walk in brightness, and are liable to impurity and imperfection in the sight of God."
- General Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma

"He [king Josiah] did away with the pagan priests appointed by the kings of Judah to burn incense on the high places of the towns of Judah and on those around Jerusalem--those who burned incense to Baal, to the sun and moon, to the constellations [Mazzaloth] and to all the starry hosts."
- 2 Kings 23:5

"Can you bring forth the constellations [Mazzaloth] in their seasons [a reference to the twelve signs of the Zodiac] or lead out the Bear [Arcturus] with its cubs?"
- Job 38:32

Arcturus is Ursa Major and the three stars in its tail are the cubs.

The Apocryphal Tradition

Ca. 150 B.C.E., the author of 1 Enoch wrote of his spell-binding journey to heaven where he saw angels and their glory.

"And these are the names of the holy angels who watch. Uriel, one of the holy angels, who is over the world and over Tartarus. Raphael, one of the holy angels, who is over the spirits of men. Raguel, one of the holy angels who takes vengeance on the world of the luminaries. Michael, one of the holy angels, to wit, he that is set over the best part of mankind and over chaos. Saraqael, one of the holy angels, who is set over the spirits, who sin in the spirit. Gabriel, one of the holy angels, who is over Paradise and the serpents and the Cherubim. Remiel, one of the holy angels, whom God set over those who rise."
- 1 Enoch 20:1-8

Essene proselytes swore to "preserve the books belonging to their sect, and the names of the angels." (Flavius Josephus, Wars of the Jews, Bk 2, Ch 8, Sn 7). The First Book of Enoch was the first piece of Jewish literature to describe a class of angels, the Watchers, who are positively evil and who lead the dead to a place of eternal torment.

"And all the angels shall execute their commandst
And shall seek to hide themselves from the presence of the Great Glory,
And the children of earth shall tremble and quake;
And ye sinners shall be cursed for ever,
And ye shall have no peace."
- 1 Enoch 102:3

The Book of Jubilees "was also known in early times as the Apocalypse of Moses, for it allegedly was written down by Moses at Mount Sinai as an angel dictated to him the histories of days past. (Scholars, though, believe that the work was composed in the second century BC)."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

"For in his days the angels of the Lord descended upon earth - those who are named The Watchers - that they should instruct the children of men, that they should do judgment and uprightness upon earth."
- The Book of Jubilees

"According to the Book of Jubilees, the Watchers are the sons of god (Genesis 6) sent from heaven to instruct the children of men; they fell after they descended to earth and cohabited with the daughters of men - for which act they were condemned (so legend reports) and became fallen angels. But not all Watchers descended: those that remained are the holy Watchers, and they reside in the 5th Heaven. The evil Watchers dwell either in the 3rd Heaven or in Hell."
- A Dictionary of Angels

"Several fragments with a clear Qumranic cast (4Q286-287, 4Q385-389, 4Q390...) parallel Belial with the angels of MA&+EMOWT ('enmity'), while Jubilees introduces Mastema/Satan into its story of the spirits of the giants, the offspring of the fallen Watchers (Jubilees 10:8,11; see also 11:5,11; 17:16; 18:9,12; 19:28; 48:2,9,12,15). Note that according to Jubilees, the angels of MA&+EMOWT would be the spirits of the giants, the offspring of the angel marriages, one tenth of whom become the servants of Mastema in leading astray and punishing humanity, while 4Q390 makes them the ones responsible for inspiring the sons of Aaron to pollute the Temple through illegitimate marriages and violence."
- David W. Suter, Ioudaios Review, Vol. 3.019, July 1993

"According to the Book of Jubilees, Enoch...testified about the Watchers who had sinned with the daughters of men; he testified against them all." And it was to protect him from the revenge of the sinning angels of the Lord, that 'he was taken from amongst the children of men, and was conducted into the Garden of Eden."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

"And I Enoch was blessing the Lord of majesty and the King of the ages, and lo! the Watchers called me -Enoch the scribe- and said to me: 'Enoch, thou scribe of righteousness, go, declare to the Watchers of the heaven who have left the high heaven, the holy eternal place, and have defiled themselves with women, and have done as the children of earth do, and have taken unto themselves wives: "Ye have wrought great destruction on the earth: And ye shall have no peace nor forgiveness of sin: and inasmuch as they delight themselves in their children, The murder of their beloved ones shall they see, and over the destruction of their children shall they lament, and shall make supplication unto eternity, but mercy and peace shall ye not attain".'"
- 1 Enoch 10:3-8

As recounted in the Dead Sea Scrolls:

"...'In the days of Jared', two hundred Watchers 'descended' on 'Ardis', the summit of Mount Hermon - a mythical location equated with the triple peak of Jebel esh Sheikh (9,200 feet), placed in the most northerly region of ancient Palestine. In Old Testament times its snowy heights had been revered as sacred by various peoples who inhabited the Holy Land; it was also the probable site of the Transfiguration of Christ when the disciples witnessed their Lord 'transfigured before them'.

"On this mountain the Watchers swear an oath and bind themselves by 'mutual imprecations', apparently knowing full well the consequences their actions will have both for themselves and for humanity as a whole. It is a pact commemorated in the name given to the place of their 'fall', for in Hebrew the word Hermon, or harem, translates as 'curse'. "
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) pp. 23-24

"In time, each of the 200 took an earthly spouse. These unions produced children of extraordinary size, who quickly devoured the world's food. To satisfy their enormous appetites, the angel-children roamed the earth, slaughtering every species of bird, beast, reptile and fish. Finally, the ravenous creatures turned on one another, stripping flesh from the bones of their fellows and slaking their thirst in rivers of blood. As this wave of destruction washed over the earth, the anguished cries of humankind reached four powerful archangels - Uriel, Raphael, Gabriel, and Michael - who upon orders from God enacted a swift retribution. First Uriel descended to earth to warn Noah of a coming deluge, advising him to prepare an ark to carry his family and a menagerie of creatures to safety. Raphael then fell upon the leader of the Watchers, bound him hand and foot, and thrust him into eternal darkness. Next, Gabriel charged with slaying the dissenters' offspring, encouraged the monstrous angel-children to fight one another. Finally, Michael trussed up the remaining Watchers, forced them to witness the deaths of their progeny, and condemned them to eternal torment. Only then did the heavens open up and wash away the last traces of the destruction that the fallen angels had wrought."
- Cosmic Duality

"Other Watchers stand accused of revealing to mortal kind the knowledge of more scientific arts, such as the knowledge of the clouds, or meteorology; the 'signs of the earth', presumably geodesy and geography; as well as astronomy and the 'signs', or passage, of the celestial bodies, such as the sun and moon. Shemyaza [the leader of the Watchers] is accredited with having taught men 'enchantments, and root-cuttings', a reference to the magical arts...One of their number, Penemue, taught 'the bitter and the sweet', surely a reference to the use of herbs and spices in foods, while instructing men on the use of 'ink and paper', implying that the Watchers introduced the earliest forms of writing. Far more disturbing is Kisdeja, who is said to have shown 'the children of men all the wicked smitings of spirits and demons, and the smitings of the embryo in the womb, that it may pass away'. In other words, he taught women how to abort their babies."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 26

"I saw Watchers in my vision, the dream-vision. Two (men) were fighting over me, saying...and holding a great contest over me. I asked them, 'Who are you, that you are thus empo[wered over me?' They answered me, 'We] [have been em]powered and rule over all mankind'. They said to me, 'Which of us do yo[u choose to rule (you)?' I raised my eyes and looked.] [One] of them was terri]fying in his appearance, [like a s]erpent, [his] cl[oa]k many-colored yet very dark...[And I looked again], and...in his appearance, his visage like a viper, and [wearing...] [exceedingly, and all his eyes...]"  "[I replied to him,] 'This [Watcher,] so is he?' He answered me, 'This Wa[tcher...] [and his three names are Belial and Prince of Darkness] and King of Evil.'"
- "Testament of Amram" (4Q535, Manuscript B)

One by one the angels of heaven are appointed by God to proceed against the Watchers and their offspring the Nephilim, described as 'the bastards and the reprobates, and the children of fornication'. Azazel is bound hand and foot, and cast for eternity into the darkness of a desert referred to as Dudael. Upon him are placed 'rough and jagged rocks' and here he shall forever remain until the Day of judgment, when he will be 'cast into the fire' for his sins. For their part in the corruption of mankind, the Watchers are forced to witness the slaughter of their own children before being cast into some kind of heavenly prison, an 'abyss of fire'. Although the Watchers' leader, Shemyaza, is cast into this abyss alongside his brothers, in other versions of the story he undergoes a more dramatic punishment. Since he was tempted by a beautiful mortal maiden named Ishtahar to reveal the Explicit Name of God in exchange for the offer of carnal pleasure, he is to be tied and bound before being made to hang for all eternity between heaven and earth, head down, in the constellation of Orion."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 26

"These spirits were locked away in the earth, but Mastema persuaded God to keep out one in ten to tempt humanity until the judgement and to commit all forms of transgression.  In the Day of Judgement all such spirits will be consigned to eternal torment and humanity renewed in spirit back to the generations of Adam:

'And the days will begin to grow many and increase amongst the children of men till their days draw night to a thousand years ...
And there will be no old man ...For all will be as children and youths.'

"The Tree of Life, fragrant and wonderful to behold will be returned to the centre ground, and the New Jerusalem will be built by God - just as later described in Revelation."
- Chris King, "The Apocalyptic Tradition"

"The corruption still left in the world after the imprisonment of the Watchers, and the death of their Nephilim offspring, is to be swept away by a series of global catastrophes, ending in the Great Flood so familiar within biblical traditions. In a separate account of the plight of the Nephilim, this mass-destruction is seen in terms of an all-encompassing conflagration sent by the angels of heaven in the form of 'fire, naphtha and brimstone'. No one will survive these cataclysms of fire and water save for the 'seed' of Noah, from whose line will come the future human race."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 28

"And now, the giants, who are produced from the spirits and flesh, shall be called evil spirits upon the earth, and on the earth shall be their dwelling. Evil spirits have proceeded from their bodies; because they are born from men and from the holy Watchers is their beginning and primal origin; they shall be evil spirits on earth, and evil spirits shall they be called. [As for the spirits of heaven, in heaven shall be their dwelling, but as for the spirits of the earth which were born upon the earth, on the earth shall be their dwelling.] And the spirits of the giants afflict, oppress, destroy, attack, do battle, and work destruction on the earth, and cause trouble: they take no food, but nevertheless hunger and thirst, and cause offenses. And these spirits shall rise up against the children of men and against the women, because they have proceeded from them."
- 1 Enoch 8-12

"The explanation of this myth, which has been a stumbling block to theologians, may be the arrival in Palestine of tall, barabarous Hebrew herdsmen early in the second millenium B.C., and their exposure, by marriage, to Asianic civilization. 'Sons of El' in this sense would mean the 'cattle-owning worshipper of the Semite Bull-god El'; 'Daughters of Adam' would mean 'women of the soil' (adama), namely, the Goddess- worshipping Canaanite agriculturists, notorious for their orgies and premarital prostitution. If so, this historical event has been tangled with the Ugaritic myth how El seduced two mortal women and fathered divine sons on them, namely Shahar ('Dawn') and Shalem ('Perfect'). Shahar appears as a winged deity in Psalm CXXXIX:9, and his son, according to Isaiah XIV:12, was the fallen angel Helel. Unions between gods and mortals, that is to say between kings or queens and commoners, occur frequently in Mediterranean and Middle Eastern myth. Since later Judaism rejected all deities but its own transcendental God, and since He never married or consorted with any female whatsoever, Rabbi Shimon ben Yohai in Genesis Rabba felt obliged to curse all who read 'Sons of God' in the Ugartic sense. Clearly, such an interperetation was still current in the second century A.D., and lapsed only when Bene Elohim meant 'God' and Judge,' the theory being that when a duly appointed magistrate tried a case, the Spirit of El posessed him: 'I have said, ye are gods.' (Psalm LXXXII:6)"
- Robert Graves and Raphael Patai, Hebrew Myths: The Book of Genesis

Jewish religious authorities, concerned that the growing worship of angels would be a threat to the belief in one God, excised works like those of the Books of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees from canonical literature. These books are now part of what is known as the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha.  The mysterious "egregors" of later magical tradition are linguistically derived from the Watchers and indicate the continuation of an underground stream of knowledge.

Babylonian

The Sephiroth: The Tree of Life 

The Ten Spheres

"And the Lord God said, 'Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:'  Therefore the Lord God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence he was taken.So he drove out the man; and he placed at the East of the garden of Eden cherubims and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life."
- Genesis 3:23-25

"The Tree of Life was a Babylonian concept, and as represented in carvings it does not look particularly like a tree at all. It was shown as a series of leafy rosettes, arranged and construction in a strange [lattice] pattern...To the Babylonians, it was a tree with magical fruit, which could only be picked by the gods. Dire consequences befell any mortal who dared to pluck form its. The tree found its way into the Hebrew legend of Adam and Eve...which is heavily loaded with allusions of the Ancient of Days. Recent works on the Kabbalah make extensive use of this tree. Ten parts or attributes of the Ancient of Days are identified with ten of the rosettes..."
- George Sassoon and Rodney Dale, The Manna Machine

"An important early text used in that study was the Sefer Yetsirah (Book of Creation), which appeared sometime between the third and sixth centuries AD. In its pages, initiates discovered an expanded theory of the creation of the universe."
- Ancient Wisdom and Secret Sects

"According to the Sefer Yezira, the spiritual world consisted of ten spheres, the Sefirot is a term related to the Hebrew word Sappir, loosely translated as 'sapphire' and interpreted as the radiance of God.) Each of the sefirot represented a different force or aspect of God, such as love, power, or understanding. These aspects were said to have emanated, or unfolded from God, and as the sefirot embodied all aspects of creation, generation, and decay, they represented the universe itself unfolding."
- Ancient Wisdom and Secret Sects

"The ten circles are known as sephiroth, the plural of sephira, meaning a number. They are interconnected in various ways....Each connection is identified with a letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and with one of the twenty-two trumps major of the Tarot, the pack of cards used by some fortune tellers. It is believed that the sephiroth exercise a mystical influence on one another via these connections.
- George Sassoon and Rodney Dale, The Manna Machine

The ten spheres are: "the spirit, air, water, fire, the four cardinal points of the compass, height and depth. These ten are all emanations from God: the crown, the wisdom, the intelligence, the love, the power, the compassion, the steadfastness, the majesty, the foundation and the kingdom. They are linked together as a vital organism, like a tree whose root is the Infinite, with the kingdom as the trunk, the foundation as the point from which the branches begin to spread, the compassion (or beauty) at the center and the crown at the top. They are the names which God gave to Himself and which make up the one great Name."
- John Ferguson, An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Mysticism and the Mystery Religions

"The ten sephirot were arranged in a rigid hierarchy, and each lower sephirah grew out of the one immediately above; that is, the second ranking sephirah grew out of the first, the third out of the second, etc. Thus the first sephirah had all the powers of the sephirot under him; the second had its own power plus all the powers of the succeeding eight, and so on. They were:

1. Kether (Crown), also called the Simple Point, because this initial and paramount sephirah was unknown and all-embracing. Kether was known familiar as the Old One, the Ancient of Days (from Daniel 7:9), the White head, or the Long Face.
2. Hochmah (Wisdom) was also known as Aba (Father) and was the masculine outgrowth of the Ancient One.
3. Binah (Understanding or Intelligence), the highest feminine emanation in the order of sephirot, also known as Ima (Mother).
4. Hesed (Kindness) is also called Gedulah (Greatness) and is masculine.
5. Geburah (Power) is also called Din (Justice) and is feminine.
6. Tipheret (Glory or Beauty) [also called Rahamin] is both masculine and feminine because it is a combination of Hesed and Geburah.
7. Netzah (Firmness, Might, Victory) is masculine.
8. Hod (Splendor) is feminine.
9. Yesod (Foundation) combines Netzah and Hod.
10. Malkut (Kingdom) has no special attributes but is a kind of funnel through which the qualities of the upper nine sephirot are transmitted to the physical world. It is therefore also called Shechinah, the Spirit of God."

"The first nine sephirot were grouped in threes, each triad including a masculine element, a feminine element, and a combining element. The first three sephirot represented the world of thought; the second, the world of emotions and morals; the third, the world of nature. The tenth sephirah, Malkut, existed alone as the harmony of the other nine.  "This triune was paralleled by the Kaballists' version of the three-part soul - an idea expressed earlier by Plato, Aristotle, the Bible, and the Talmud. The soul called Neshamah represented the intellect and corresponded to the first three sephirot. The soul called Ruah represented the emotion and corresponded to the Hesed-Geburah-Tipheret triad. The soul called Nefesh represented man's animal nature and corresponded to the lowest triad of sephirot."
- Harry Gersh, The Sacred Books of the Jews

"...The 'true' universe consists of the En Sof (literally the infinite or the incomprehensible), which is the spiritual universe. The spiritual universe is inseparable from God, and has no beginning and no end (unlike the physical universe). God has many characteristics, but they can be logically separated into ten groupings. When these characteristics are all present in a particular 'region,' that region is perfect. However, God has several times removed certain characteristics from a point in the En Sof (the act is called tzimtzum , contraction) thus creating a point of imperfection wherein a physical universe can exist.  Our current universe is not believed to be the first, but it may be the longest-lived. It was created by removing Law from a point and filling the 'vacuum' with Kindness. This was necessary for it was God's desire to give Man free will or the power to decide good or evil, and this would not be possible if Divine Law permeated the universe. The act of creation itself was accomplished through ten emanations (esher sephirot in Hebrew ) .... First, Keter (Crown) was emanated as a projection of En Sof into the physical universe. From this sphere of emanation came Khokhmah (Intelligence), called the father."
- Simcha Kuritzky, "Kabbalistic Magic" Part I

Da'ath

Da'ath is "the secret sphere of Knowledge on the cosmic tree."
- Perle Epstein, Kabbalah - The Way of the Jewish Mystic

"...The essential and incorruptible unity of the Sefiroth is revealed not only by their reciprocal 'relationships', which are concentrated in the 'middle pillar' [of the Tree], but also by their common light which 'circulated' in the 'channels' of these relationships and is called da'ath, 'knowledge'. This refers to the omniscience or universal consciousness of God which, properly speaking, is not a Sefirah, but the cognitive presence of the One in each of them."
- Leo Schaya, The Universal Meaning of the Kabbalah

"And by da'ath the rooms [or spiritual 'receptivities'] are filled with all precious and pleasant [Sephirothic] riches."
- Proverbs 24:5

Da'ath: the mysterious knowledge, the great abyss

"Unlike the sephirah which represent states of mind rather than static placements, and the paths of lessons learned to move from one sephirah or concept to another, Da'ath is not represented upon the Qabalah tree. It is placed below the three supernal sephirah - Kether (the crown), Binah (+) and Chokmah (-). The polarities of positive and negative alternate up and down the tree and cause the energies to circulate as the universal input is pulled downward through the tree supernal sephirah to Da'ath. In this void between the higher and the lower the hither to formless energy of the universe takes on material shape by crystallization. Here is the highest point of the human mind: the home of the brainstorm or creative energy that is brought into manifestation on the earthly plain. As the sand passes through the narrow center of the hour glass, so does knowledge incoming from the universe pass into our consciousness in the machinery of Da'ath. Here is the ultimate home of intuitive knowledge from which all concepts stem.

"When working with the tree either to call down the greater knowledge of the superhuman universe and its infinite organization, or to bring our self up the tree from the lower sephirah for spiritual upliftment and higher perspective, all energy must pass through Da'ath on its way into matter or disintegration into the hypertext of the universe. Thus the term mysterious knowledge is given to Da'ath where wisdom (Chokmah) is combined with understanding (Binah) and melded to the material level through the influence of Tiphareth (sixth sephirah: balanced harmony), which pervades one's soul with the concealed light of illumination of consciousness."

Suggested reading: The Mystical Qabalah, by Dion Fortune: Aquarian Thorsons: imprint Harper Collins
- Special commentary by Rebecca Salem

In the 17th century, Nathan of Gaza, "circulated a curious document, the Sepher ha-Sha'are ha-Daath. He described this as a commentary on two chapters of the Book of the Alhazred, an ancient history of the world. The title means the "Book of the Gates of Knowledge". The word for knowledge, da'ath, has a technical meaning. When the Bible was translated into Greek, the word da'ath was translated as gnosis. Da'ath has a very peculiar status in Kabbalah, being a kind of non-existent, a nothingness. In modern Hermetic Kabbalah it is sometimes represented a hole or gate into an abyss of consciousness. Crowley's experiments with the Call of the Thirty Aethyrs led him into this abyss."
- The Book of the Arab, by Justin Geoffry, Starry Wisdom Press, 1979

"When Malkuth ['Kingdom'] 'fell' out of the Garden of Eden it left behind a 'hole' in the fabric of the Tree, and this 'hole', located in the centre of the Abyss, is called Da'ath, or Knowledge. Da'ath is not a sephira; it is a hole."
- Colin Low, "Notes on the Kabbalah"

"DA'ATH - Knowledge - is not a Sephira. It is not on the Tree of Life: that is, there is in reality no such thing....Da'ath is the crown of the Ruach, the Intellect; and its place is in the Abyss. That is it breaks into pieces immediately it is examined."
- Aleister Crowley, Little Essays Toward Truth

"Where the word [;Da'ath] appears in Genesis it is translated into Greek as 'gnosis'. When Adam knew Eve, the word used was based on the same verb root as the word Da'ath. In traditional Kabbalah Da'ath never made it as a proper sephiroth (as Sepher Yetzirah puts it, there could only be "ten and not nine; ten and not eleven", and so the eleventh quality on the kabbalistic Tree of Life has developed a mystique that comes from being unlike the others. As the sephiroth represent emantations of the divine in creation, Da'ath has progressively taken on the quality of an anti-emanation. It is difficult to place exactly in time the point at which this attribution began to find real coherence. In a book on Kabbalah published in 1965 the author Gareth Knight attributes to Da'ath the Roman god Janus, the two-faced god of portals who is forever looking two ways. However, some of the most vivid depictions of Da'ath as gateway were introduced in the mid 1970s in the writings of the British magician (and joint biographer of Crowley) Kenneth Grant."
- Colin Low, "Dr. John Dee, the Necronomicon & the Cleansing of the World - A Gnostic Trail"

"Da'ath has a dual aspect; on one hand it is our knowledge of the world of appearance, the body of facts which constitute our beliefs and prop up the illusion of identity and ego and separateness. On the other hand it is revelation, objective knowledge, what is often referred to as gnosis. The transition between the knowledge of the world of appearance and revelation entails the experience of the abyss, the abolition of the sense of ego, the negation of identity. From within the abyss any identity is possible. It is chaos, unformed. It contains, as it were, the seeds of identity. It is from this point that an infinity of gates open, each one a gateway to a mode of being. These are what Nathan is referring to as the "Gates of Knowledge."
- The Book of the Arab, by Justin Geoffry, Starry Wisdom Press, 1979

The Ancient of Days

"According to Genesis 1:27, the human being is created in the image of God. The sefirot are the divine original of that image. As Primordial Adam, they are the mythical paragon of the human being, our archetypal nature. The human race has lost this nature, but if one were to purify himself, he would reconnect with the sefirotand become a vessel for them. This is what the Patriarchs attained and, to a greater degree, Moses."
- Arthur Green in the Preface to the Zohar (Daniel Chana Matt Editor)

"The sefirot[emanation of God] below Keter [the top skull], from Hokhmah to Yesod, are referred to as the Impatient One (Ze'eir Appin; literally, 'short-face', but meaning 'short-tempered, impatient'; cf. Proverbs 14:17) . Keter, the White Head, the highest sefirah, is pure compassion and therefore described as Arikh Anpin, 'long-faced, long-suffering, slow to anger'; cf. Exodus 34:6. The lower sefirotare characterized by a tension between different aspects of the divine: right and left, love and rigor. Relative to Keter, they are impatient."  "Looking back to His source, the Impatient One is soothed and manifests the compassion overflowing from Keter."
- Notes on the Zohar (Daniel Chana Matt Editor)

"When the Blessed Holy One is aroused to delight Himself with the righteous, the Face of the Ancient of Days shines into the face of the Impatient One. Its Forehead is revealed and shines to this forehead. Then it is called 'a time of favor' (Psalms 69:14). Whenever Judgment looms and the forehead of the Impatient One is revealed, the Forehead of the Ancient of Ancients is revealed; Judgment subsides and is not executed."
- Idra Rabba, Zohar 3:136b

"When the desire arose in the the Will of the White Head to manifest Its Glory,
It arrayed, prepared, and generated from the Blinding Flash
one spark, radiating in 370 directions.
The spark stood still.
A pure aura emerged whirling and breathed upon the spark.
The spark congealed and one hard skull emerged, emanating to four sides.
Surrounded by this pure aura, the spark was contained and absorbed.
Completely absorbed, you think?
No, secreted within.
That is how this skull emanated to its sides.
This aura is the secret of secrets of the Ancient of Days.
Through the breath hidden in this skull fire emanated on one side, and air on the other, with the pure aura standing over this side and pure fire over the other.
What is a fire doing here?
It is not fire, but the spark surrounded by the pure aura illuminates 270 worlds,
and from its side, Judgment comes into being.
That is why this skull is called the Hard Skull."
- Zohar

The Will of the White Head
"The White Head is keter, who is pure love and compassion, untainted by judgment...Keter is often called Will."  "The hair on His head was like clean wool."
- Daniel 7:9

The blinding flash
"Aramaic, bozina de-quardinuta/. This is the Zohar's name for the first impulse of emanation proceeding for Ein Sof, the Infinite, through Keter.  "The flash directs the entire process of emanation, providing its rhythm and measure. The goal of meditation is to attain this flash and participate in the flow of being."

One spark
"Aramaic, bad nizoza. This is the first point: Hokhmah, Wisdom."

One hard skull
"Binah ["Understanding"], who proceeds from the spark of Hokhmah."

Four sides
"The four sides (north, south, east, and west) symbolize four sefirotthat emanate from Binah: Din [Power], Hesed [Love], Tif'eret [Beauty], and Shekbinah [Presence]."

Surrounded by this pure aura
"Hokhmah is absorbed by its source. It does not dissolve there but rather remains hidden and transmits the power of further emanation to Binah."

The breath
"breathed by the aura through the spark of Hokhmah into the skull of Binah."

Fire
"Din, (Gevurah), the sefirah of Judgment."

Air
"Hesed, Love."

270 worlds Judgment
"Binah, the product of the spark of Hokhmah, is the compassionate Divine Mother. However, She includes within Herself the roots of Judgment and gives birth to Din, the sefirah of Judgment. 270 may be an allusion to ra, 'evil', which has the numerical equivalent of 270."
- Notes on the Zohar (Daniel Chana Matt Editor)

"Spiritual and psychological wholeness is achieved by meditating on the qualities of each sefirah, by imitating and integrating the attributes of God. The path is not easy. Divine will can be harsh: Abraham was commanded to sacrifice Isaac in order to balance love with rigor. From the Other Side, demonic forces threaten and seduce."

"The ecstasy of sefirotic contemplation, however seems reserved mostly for souls who have departed this world or for the high-priest on the Day of Atonement. Souls of the living who succeed in prayer delight in palaces below Shekbinah/ [the opening to the Divine]. If especially devout, they may be raised to the level of Yesod or attain a sefirotic vision, but the highest sefirot are considered unapproachable. In fact the Zohar forbids contemplation of Binah and what lies beyond Her."
- Arthur Green in the Preface to the Zohar (Daniel Chana Matt Editor)

Egyptian

Ptah, The Universal Architect God 

The Memphis triad "consisted of the universal architect god, Ptah, patron of masons, his consort Sekhmet, the lion-headed one (sometimes Bast the cat goddess), and Nefertum/Imhotep their son, who was also a healer god."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

Sekhmet was "a lioness-goddess, worshiped in Memphis as the wife of Ptah; created by Ra from the fire of his eyes as a creature of vengeance to punish mankind for his sins; later, became a peaceful protectress of the righteous. She was worshiped with Bast and Ra as a compound deity, Sekhmet-bast-ra, and was considered the consort of Ptah-seker-ausar."
- Shawn C. Knight (),"Egyptian Mythology FAQ"

"Worshiped in Memphis from the earliest dynastic times (c.3000 BC), Ptah was seen as the creator of the universe in the Memphite cosmology. He fashioned the bodies in which dwelt the souls of men in the afterlife. Other versions of the myths state that he worked under Thoth's orders, creating the heavens and the earth according to Thoth's specifications.

"Ptah is depicted as a bearded man wearing a skullcap, shrouded much like a mummy, with his hands emerging from the wrappings in front and holding the Uas (phoenix-headed) scepter, an Ankh, and a Djed (sign of stability). He was often worshiped in conjunction with the gods Seker and Osiris, and worshiped under the name Ptah-seker-ausar."

"Ptah, 'south of is wall', was the god of Memphis, the ancient political capital of Egypt. In fact, in the New Kingdom (1550-1070 BC) his temple there, Hewet-ka-Ptah (Mansion of the spirit of Ptah), gave the name for the whole region and is ultimately the origin, via Greek, of the word Egypt itself."

"In the Coffin Texts and documents of the Ramesside era there are references to Ptah as being responsible for fashioning gods and the sun and for the ripening of vegetation. But even earlier in the Old Kingdom, Ptah's nature as a supreme artisan was fully developed and his High Priest at Memphis was called 'Greatest of the controllers of craftsmen'. From the reign of Ramesses II (1290-1224 BC) we find that the god Ptah coalesces with the deity Ta-tenen. The name Ta-tenen means 'the land which has become distinguishable', in other words, indistinguishable from the primeval waters. Thus Ta-tenen risen from Nu can be equated with the primeval mound imagery..."

"Ptah gave life to the other gods (including Atum of Heliopolis) by means of his heart and his tongue. the conception of thought in the hear and the speech of the tongue determine the action of every limb. Ptah's presence is universal in the heart and mounts of 'all gods, all people, all cattle, all creeping things that live'. Ptah is superior to Atum, who brought his Ennead into being 'by his semen and his fingers'. The Ennead of Ptah is the teeth and lips in his mouth, so that by pronouncing the identity of everything the authority of his utterance was such that all creation came into being. Whatever the eyes see, the ears hear and the nose breathes goes straight to the heart and the conclusion reached by the heart is then spoken by the tongue. This is how Ptah commanded all the gods into existence and how he became Ta-tenen, 'from whom all life emerged'. Having managed the birth of the gods, Ptah created for them cities, sanctuaries, shrines and perpetual offerings."

"From this myth Ptah is seen to be an intellectual principle of creation amalgamated with the physical image of Ta-tenen as the primeval mound. It is a complete synthesis of mind and the material world. Known as the 'logos doctrine', there is a resounding echo of this impressive philosophical approach to the cosmos formulated by the priests of Memphis in the...New Testament."
- George Hart, Egyptian Myths

"Although Ptah later became identified also as god of the death, his earlier role as creator continued to be the strongest aspect of his divinity. As the high god of Memphis, he was declared the master of destiny. It is he who imparts to the phenomenal world the character of an established order, valid for all time. In Abydos, in the temple of Seti I, he is called 'he who has created maat' - that is, divine order. Herein lies his special identity with the king, who, in the Egyptian view, embodied that divine order. Just as the creator god rules as king in a cosmic sense, is son, the pharaoh, is established on earth to rule mankind. Their kinship serves to connect the two realms and to sanctify the land of Egypt over which the pharaoh rules."
- An Encyclopedia of Archetypal Symbolism

Ptah, as a solar god, "died and rose again, and this became the resurrection, and the way into a future life as the founder of Egyptian eschatology. Atum, son of Ptah likewise became a voluntary sacrifice as the source of life. The father who was blended with the mother in Atum, is portrayed as the creator of mankind by the shedding of his own blood [in cutting his member]....Later, this was ritually done to Attis, Adonis, Tammuz, Bacchus, Dionysus, all facsimiles of Osiris, all castrated on the tree of life, their testicles still glittering on today's Yuletide trees."
- Peter Tompkins, The Magic of Obelisks

The Architect Imhotep

"The First and Second Dynasties (say from 3300 BC onwards) saw the construction of ever more elaborate monuments which embodied with increasing confidence and vigor the new-found skills and knowledge that had arrived in Egypt. And this trend towards greater and greater beauty and excellence received what many modern scholars regarded as its ultimate expression in the remarkable stone edifices of the funerary complex of King Zoser, the first Pharaoh of the Third dynasty.  "The complex...is dominated by a towering six-tiered pyramid 197 feet high and is located to the south of the city of Cairo at Saqqara. The complete site takes the form of a rectangle nearly 2,000 feet long and 1,000 feet wide and was originally enclosed by a single massive stone wall, large sections of which are still standing. Other features include an extensive colonnade with forty tall columns, and elegant courtyard, and numerous shrines, temples and outbuildings - all on a colossal scale but with clean and delicate lines."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"Imhotep was the architect of the step pyramid complex of King Djoser (2630-2611 BC) at Sakkara, which in grandeur of concept is unrivaled and which was the first colossal stone edifice to be built. The pyramid suggests a gigantic stairway for the monarch's ascent to the sky, while the surrounding buildings originally provided the temple for the royal cult and pavilions and shrines for the eternal celebration of Djoser's jubilee festivals."
- George Hart, Egyptian Myths

"Seal-bearer of the King of Lower Egypt, one who is near the head of the King (i.e., vizier), Director of the Great Mansion, Royal representative, High Priest of Heliopolis, Imhotep, the carpenter and the sculptor..."
- from a limestone bust from a lost statue of King Djoser

"His reputation as an experience architect led to his adoption by the scribes of Egypt as the most eminent practitioner of their craft. He became regarded as a source of intellectual inspiration and a number of moral maxims were alleged to have been committed to papyrus in his name."
- George Hart, Egyptian Myths

"I have heard the words of Imhotep and Hor-dedef (a son of King Khufu) whose maxims are frequently quoted - and what is the state of their monuments now? Their walls are smashed and their places have disappeared - just as if they had never existed."
- Harper's Song (circa 2000 BC)

"...Imhotep was often characterized in inscriptions as 'the image and likeness of Thoth' - and also as the 'successor to Thoth' after the deity had ascended to heaven.."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"At some point, through a shift in the Egyptian psychological view of the status of Imhotep, his role as a sage became enhanced by attributing his birth to the direct intervention of one of the major gods. Imhotep became 'son of Ptah' creator god of Memphis, whose nature as a god of craftsman particularly suited the fathering of an offspring renowned for sculptural skill. From the Saite period (Dynasty XXVI) there is ample evidence of a vigorous cult centered around Imhotep son of Ptah at Memphis and Saqqara. Hundreds of bronzes depict him in an iconography which subtly emphasize his wisdom and divine parent. He is represented seated with a papyrus scroll across his knees, wearing a skullcap and a long linen kilt. We can interpret the papyrus as suggesting the sources of knowledge kept by scribes in the 'House of Life'. The headgear identifies Imhotep with Ptah, and his priestly linen garment symbolizes his religious purity."

"By the Ptolemaic period "as his cult spread, more and more emphasis was placed on his role as a supreme physician readily identifiable with the Greek Asklepios....The cult of Imhotep became a focal point for married couples desiring a son....It was this immediacy of Imhotep son of Ptah as resolver of human problems, often medical, that ensured the popularity of his cult into the Roman period."
- George Hart, Egyptian Myths

Hermes Trismegistus

The Archaic Underground Tradition

(1) Ancient Egyptian Tradition

"In the ancient city of Annu (later called On in the Bible and Heliopolis by the Greeks) there was a great sacred pillar, itself named Annu - possibly before the city. This, we believe, was the great pillar of Lower Egypt and its counterpart in Upper Egypt at the time of unification was in the city of Nekheb. Later the city of Thebes, known then as 'Waset', had the title 'Iwnu Shema', which meant 'the Southern Pillar'."

"The twin pillars of the Two Lands became the Pillars of Hermes and the attributes of the ancient Egyptian moon god Thoth became absorbed into Hermes...It was said that this god [Thoth] possessed all secret knowledge on 36,535 scrolls that were hidden under the heavenly vault (the sky) which could only be found by the worthy, who would use such knowledge for the benefit of mankind."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

The tradition of a secret doctrine of Thoth appears to be well established in Egypt:
1.) According to a papyrus dating to Dynasty 12 of the Old Kingdom:

"Then [His Majesty] King Khufu, the vindicated, said: Now as for the rumor that you know the shrines of the secret chambers of the enclosure of [Thoth]? Dedi said: By your favor, I do not know their shrines, Sovereign, my lord, but I do know the place where they are. His Majesty said: Where are they? And Dedi said: There is a passage of flint in a chamber called the Inventory in Heliopolis in that passage."
- "A Marvel in the Time of King Khufu Himself"

2.) A chapter in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, according to its rubric, is said to have been found at:

"Shmun [Hermopolis] under the feet of the majesty of this sublime god [Thoth] upon a slab of upper Egyptian granite in the script of the god himself in the tomb of...Mycerinus, by Prince Hor-dedef. He found the spell when he was engaged in inspecting the temples."
- The Egyptian Book of the Dead

"Divine authorship elevates religious literature from present day existence; similarly, the accounts about the discovery of such works ascribe them to a more or less distant past. This exemplifies the tendency to emphasize the antiquity of sacred writings, which is particularly evident in the retention of ancient linguistic forms or the deliberate choice of archaistic expressions. Egyptians could also adopt the customs of bygone ages in their mode of writing."

"There is a particle of truth in the statement of Clement of Alexandria that the Egyptians had forty-two sacred writings by Hermes (Thoth), in so far as these texts, which include geographical and medical works among others, constitute the entire range of material available for the education of priests. The reference to Thoth's authorship...is based on ancient tradition; the figure forty-two probably stems from the number of Egyptian nomes, and thus conveys the notion of completeness."
- Siegfried Morenz, Egyptian Religion

Regarding the "Pillars of Hermes" of "Seth" and of "Solomon"
"In the 9th chapter of the [Egyptian] Ritual of the Dead they are referred to as the 'Pillars of Shu', the 'Pillars of the Gods of the Dawning Light', and also as 'the North and Southern Columns of the Gate of the Hall of Truth'. In the 125th chapter, they are represented by the sacred gateway, the door to which the aspirant is brought when he has completed the negative confession. The archaic pictures on the one Pillar are painted in black upon a white ground, and those on the other in white upon a black ground, in order to express the interchange and reconciliation of opposing forces and the eternal balance of light and darkness which give force to visible nature....The archaic illustrations are taken from vignettes of the 17th and 125th chapter of the Ritual of the Dead, the Egyptian Book of the 'Per-em-Hru' or the 'Book of Coming Forth into the Day', the oldest book in the world as yet discovered."

"...The general design of the White Pillar is a pictorial synthesis of the gradual freeing of the soul from the body, left to be mummied and its union with Osiris, Lord and Judge of the Dead and of the resurrection, the sun in his rising....The Black Pillar symbolizes the pathway of darkness, the Negative Confession, as the White Pillar represents the Hymn to the Rising Sun, the Pathway of Light, and the Positive Confession."
- G. H. Frater, "The Core of the Tradition" The Complete Golden Dawn System of Magic

Greek Accounts

"Explaining the Egyptian pantheon of twelve gods to his countrymen, the Greek historian Herodotus also wrote of an 'Immortal whom the Egyptians venerated as "Hercules".' He traced the origins of the worship of this Immortal to Phoenicia, 'hearing that there was a temple of Hercules at that place, very highly venerated'. In the temple he saw two pillars. 'One was of pure gold; the other was as of emerald, shining with great brilliancy at night."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

"Plato's Timaeus and Critias state that about 560 BC in the temple of Neith at Sais there were secret halls containing historical records which had been kept for more the 9,000 years. Proclus gives the name of the high priest with whom Plato spoke in Sais - Pateneit. It is probably from him that the Greek philosopher learned about the oldest archives of Egypt. Another interesting fact to notice is that the high priest of Egypt Psonchis, teacher of Pythagoras, also mentioned sacred registers which even speak of a collision of the Earth with a giant asteroid in a remote past."
- Andrew Tomas, On the Shores of Endless Worlds

"Greek philosophy and Egyptian lore really came together at the time of the Lagides, who gradually made Alexandria the intellectual, scientific, philosophic and religious center of the Hellenistic world....Manetho [his hieroglyphic name meant 'Gift of Thoth'], the Egyptian priest of Heliopolis, was also famous for translating the mysteries into Greek. He lived during the final years of the fourth and first half of the third centuries B.C. in the reign of the last two Ptolemies."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

"Manetho extracted his history from certain pillars which he discovered in Egypt, whereon inscriptions had been made by Thoth, or the first Mercury [or Hermes], in the sacred letters and dialect; but which were after the flood translated from that dialect into the Greek tongue, and laid up in the private recesses the Egyptian Temples. These pillars were found in subterranean caverns, near Thebes and beyond the Nile, not far from the sounding statue of Memnon, in a place called Syringes; which are described to be certain winding apartments underground; made, it is said, by those who were skilled in ancient rites; who, foreseeing the coming of the Deluge, and fearing lest the memory of their ceremonies be obliterated, built and contrived vaults, dug with vast labor, in several places."

Hermes Trismegistus "invented many things necessary for the uses of life, and gave them suitable names; he taught men how to write down their thoughts and arrange their speech; he instituted the ceremonies to be observed in the worship of each of the Gods; he observed the course of the stars; he invented music, the different bodily exercises, arithmetic, medicine, the art of working in metals, the lyre with three strings; he regulated the three tones of the voice, the sharp, taken from autumn, the grave from winter, and the middle from spring, there being then but three seasons. It was he who taught the Greeks the mode of interpreting terms and things, when they gave him the name of [Hermes], which signifies Interpreter.

"In Egypt he instituted hieroglyphics: he selected a certain number of persons whom he judged fitted to be the depositories of his secrets, of such only as were capable at attaining the throne and the first offices in the Mysteries, he united them in a body, created them Priests of the Living God, instructed them in the sciences and arts, and explained to them the symbols by which they were veiled."
- General Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma

"...The so-called Hermetic literature...is a series of papyri describing various induction procedures...In one of them, there is a dialogue called the Asclepius (after the Greek god of healing) that describes the art of imprisoning the souls of demons or of angel in statues with the help of herbs, gems and odors, such that the statue could speak and prophesy. In other papyri, there are still other recipes for constructing such images and animating them, such as when images are to be hollow so as to enclose a magic name inscribed on gold leaf."
- Julian Jaynes, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind

"The Vision is the most famous of all the Hermetic fragments, and contains an exposition of Hermetic cosmogony and the secret sciences of the Egyptians regarding the culture and unfoldment of the human soul. For some time it was erroneously called 'The Genesis of Enoch', but that mistake has now been rectified."
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

"His importance in magic is due to the so-called 'Emerald Tablet' which succinctly sets out the 'as above, so below' principle on which most magical theory is based."
- David Conway, Ritual Magic

"The exact origins of the celebrated 'Emerald Tablet' are lost, but it is certainly not nearly as old as it is supposed to be. The content of the 'Emerald Tablet' can be traced back, with a fair degree of certainty, to Moslem alchemists in Syria in about the tenth or eleventh centuries."
- Daniel Cohen, Masters of the Occult

"While Hermes still walked the earth with men, he entrusted to his chosen successors the sacred Book of Thoth. This work contained the secret processes by which the regeneration of humanity was to be accomplished and also served as the key to is other writings. Nothing definite is known concerning the contents of the Book of Thoth other than that its pages were covered with strange hieroglyphic figures and symbols, which gave to those acquainted with their use unlimited power over the spirits of the air and the subterranean divinities. When certain areas of the brain are stimulated by the secret processes of the Mysteries, the consciousness of man is extended and he is permitted to behold the Immortals and enter into the presence of the superior gods. The Book of Thoth described the method whereby this stimulation was accomplished. In truth, therefore, it was the 'Key to Immortality'.

According to legend, the Book of Thoth was kept in a golden box in the inner sanctuary of the temple. There was but one key and this was in the possession of the 'Master of the Mysteries', the highest initiate of the Hermetic Arcanum. He alone knew what was written in the secret book. The Book of Thoth was lost to the ancient world with the decay of the Mysteries, but its faithful initiates carried it sealed in the sacred casket into another land. The book is still in existence and continues to lead the disciples of this age into the presence of the Immortals. No other information can be given to the world concerning it now, but the apostolic succession from the first hierophant initiated by Hermes himself remains unbroken to this day, and those who are peculiarly fitted to serve the Immortals may discover this priceless document if they will search sincerely and tirelessly for it."

"It has been asserted that the Book of Thoth is, in reality, the mysterious Tarot of the Bohemians - a strange emblematic book of seventy-eight leaves which has been in possession of the gypsies since the time then they were driven from their ancient temple, the Serapeum."
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

The Philosphy of Hermes

"According to the Neoplatonic view the material world is arranged as a 'golden chain', which reaches from the topmost being and from the one which is beyond even existence, down to the last shimmer of being in matter, joining plane with plane in their essence. Ascending the chain the beings climb back to the summit of all being."
- Holger Kersten & Elmar R. Gruber, The Jesus Conspiracy - The Turin Shroud & The Truth About the Resurrection (1992)

"Written by a Neoplatonist philosopher of about the fifth century, "the Celestial Hierarchies describes three worlds of which ours is the lowest. This is the elemental world of nature and is subject to influences from above. Above this 'sublunary' world, is what is called the 'celestial' world wherein are found the stars and their 'spirits' or 'guardians' (analogous to the Gnostic archons). Even higher is the sphere of the 'supercelestial' world, the world of nous, the 'intellectual' or 'intelligible' world of angelic spirits, of superior knowledge of reality because closer to the One, the divine source of creation, who is beyond the three worlds. Hand in hand with this concept of worlds, of which ours is the lowest projection, goes it essential counterpart; the concept of microcosm.... Going deeper and deeper into the mind of Man, illuminated by nous, man could travel farther and farther into the universe - and back again."
- Tobias Churton, The Gnostics

"Hermes, while wandering in a rocky and desolate place, gave himself over to meditation and prayer. Following the secret instructions of the Temple, he gradually freed his higher consciousness from the bondage of his bodily senses; and, thus release, his divine nature revealed to him the mysteries of the transcendental spheres. He beheld a figure, terrible and awe-inspiring. It was the Great Dragon, with wings stretching across the sky and light streaming in all directions from its body. (The Mysteries taught that the Universal Life was personified as a dragon.) The Great Dragon called Hermes by name, and asked him why he thus meditated upon the World Mystery. Terrified by the spectacle, Hermes prostrated himself before the Dragon, beseeching it to reveal its identity. The great creature answered that it was Poimandres, the Mind of the Universe, the Creative Intelligence, and the Absolute Emperor of all. [Edouard Schure, The Mysteries of Egypt, identities Poimandres as the god Osiris.] Hermes then besought Poimandres to disclose the nature of the universe and the constitution of the gods. The dragon acquiesced, bidding Trismegistus hold its image in his mind.

"Immediately the form of Poimandres changed. Where it had stood there was a glorious and pulsating Radiance. This Light was the spiritual nature of the Great Dragon itself. Hermes was 'raised' into the midst of this Divine Effulgence and the universe of material things faded from his consciousness. Presently a great darkness descended and, expanding, swallowed up the Light. Everything was troubled. about Hermes swirled a mysterious watery substance which gave forth a smokelike vapor. The air was filled with inarticulate moanings and sighings which seemed to come from the Light swallowed up in the darkness. His mind told Hermes that the Light was the form of the spiritual universe and that the swirling darkness which had engulfed it represented material substance.

"Then out of the imprisoned Light a mysterious and Holy Word came forth and took its stand upon the smoking waters. This Word - the Voice of the Light - rose out of the darkness as a great pillar, and the fire and the air followed after it, but the earth and the water remained unmoved below. Thus the waters of Light were divided from the waters of darkness, and from the waters of Light were formed the worlds above and from the waters of darkness were formed the worlds below. The earth and the water next mingle, becoming inseparable, and the Spiritual Word which is called Reason moved upon their surface, causing endless turmoil."

"Then again was heard the voice of Poimandres, but His form was not revealed: 'I Thy God am the Light and the Mind which were before substance was divided from spirit and darkness from Light. And the Word which appeared as a pillar of flame out of the darkness is the Son of God, born of the mystery of the Mind. the name of that Word is Reason. Reason is the offspring of Thought [Thoth] and Reason shall divide the Light from the darkness and establish truth in the midst of the waters'."
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

[Compare with the tradition behind the pillar of fire that the Isrealites followed in the wilderness.]

"Of the immortal man it should be said that He is hermaphrodite, or male and female, and eternally watchful. He neither slumbers nor sleeps, and is governed by a Father also both male and female, and ever watchful. Such is the mystery kept hidden to this day, for Nature, being mingled in marriage with the Sky Man, brought forth a wonder most wonderful - seven men, all bisexual, male and female, and upright of stature, each one exemplifying the natures of the Seven governors [spirits of the Planets]. These, O Hermes, are the seven races, species, and wheels."
"Then all living creatures, including man, which had been hermaphroditical, were separated, the males being set apart by themselves and the females likewise, according to the dictates of Reason.'

"Then God spoke to the Holy Word within the soul of all things, saying: 'Increase in increasing and multiply in multitudes, all you, my creatures and workmanships. Let him that is endued with Mind know himself to be immortal and that the cause of death is the love of the body; and let him learn all things that are, for he who has recognized himself enters into the state of Good.'"
- Poimadres (or The Vision of Hermes)

"Man, according to Hermes, had taken on a mortal body merely to commune with nature, but at heart remained a spirit, a divine, creative, and immortal essence. Living beings did not die, but, being composite, dissolved the bond in order to reunite and re-form. Nothing dies; it only dissolves and transforms. The gnosis consisted in re-becoming a god."
- Peter Tompkins, The Magic of Obelisks

"We suffer a perpetual transmutation, whereby we receive a perpetual flow of fresh atoms, while those that we have received are leaving us."
- Giordano Bruno

"Indeed, for antiquity in general, the divination of man was not an extravagant dream. 'Know, then, that you are a God,' Cicero wrote. And in a Hermetic text we read: 'I know thee, Hermes, and thou knowest me: I am thou and thou art I.' Similar expressions are found in Christian writings. As Clement of Alexandria says, the true (Christian) Gnostic 'has already become God.' And for Lactantlius, the chaste man will end by becoming consimilis Deo, 'identical in all respects with God.'"
- Mircea Eliade, Rites and Symbols of Initiation

"...You saw the spirit, you became spirit. You saw Christ, you became Christ. You saw the father, you shall become Father....you see yourself, and what you see you shall [become]."  "Whoever achieves gnosis becomes "no longer Christian but a Christ."
- Gospel of Philip

"...I was very disturbed, and I turned to myself...Having seen the light that surrounded me and the good that was within me, I became divine."
- Allogenes

The Neoplatonic Origins of the Writings

"...A Greek manuscript in seventeen books brought from Macedonia to Cosimo de' Medici...was said to contain the secret wisdom of Thoth, the Egyptian sage whom the Greeks called Hermes Trismegistus, or the Thrice Great Hermes."
- Peter Tompkins, The Magic of Obelisks

"A fusion of Greek philosophy and the ancient religion of Egypt, the beliefs of Hermeticism were contained in a body of texts known as the Corpus Hermeticum."  "The Corpus Hermeticum takes the form of dialogues between Trismegistus, Thoth, and several other Egyptian deities, including Isis. Scholars point out that little in the text is truly original. In fact, much of the Hermetic world view is grounded in the philosophy of Plato. Hermetics saw the universe in terms of light and dark, good and evil, spirit and matter. Like their Gnostic contemporaries, practitioners preached a mind-body dualism and salvation through the possession of true and divine knowledge."
- Ancient Wisdom and the Secret Sects

"...In 1614 the brilliant scholar of Greek, Isaac Casaubon had shown in his de rebus sacris et ecclesiaticis exercitiones XVI that the Corpus Hermeticum could not possibly have been written by an ancient Egyptian sage - be he Hermes Trismegistus or anyone else. The Greek style was of the period of Plotinus (second and third century) and, furthermore, it had clearly escaped the attention of former commentators that neither Plato nor Moses nor Aristotle nor indeed any pre-Christian writer had ever made reference to this Hermes Trismegistus."
- Tobias Churton, The Gnostics

"It is this very book [the Book of Moses/] which Hermes plagiarized when he named the seven perfumes of sacrifice in his sacred book entitled The Wing."
- Fr Festugiere, Revelation of Hermes

"According to the legend... which had come from Lactantius, a father of the Church, Hermes Trismegistus was supposed to have foretold the coming of Christ. Hermes Trismegistus, in the book titled The Perfect Word, made use of these words: 'The Lord and Creator of all things, whom we have thought right to call God, since He made the second God visible and sensible.... Since, therefore, He made Him first, and alone, and one only, He appeared to Him beautiful, and most full of all good things; and He hallowed Him, and altogether loved Him as His own Son.' The fraud perpetrated by Neoplatonics of the second century was that Hermes was supposed to have been living at the time of Moses and his creation story and the quote which I read you was all about 1,500 years before Christ. In reality it was dated about the second century AD."

"The Neoplatonics believed in a world spirit, and that one could coax the spirit into matter through the use of the soul, which was located midway between spirit and matter. This use of the soul is what is known as magic. Augustine was revulsed by this practice and strongly admonished Hermes for practicing such magic."
- Gerry Rose ,"The Venetian Takeover of England and Its Creation of Freemasonry"

"The Trismegistus, then, came under the influence of the early Christian Gnostics, many of whom adopted large chunks of it in defense of their 'heresies'. The most notable of these was Basilides, whom the great psychologist Carl Jung believed to be either a fragment of his own group soul guiding him in trance through the Seven Sermons of the Dead, or himself in a former life. The Valentinian Gnosis was also strongly Hermetical. The Gnostic flavor in the Trismegistus literature is therefore obviously very strong, so it will pay the student to strip away some of these Christo-Gnostic overleaves in order to get a little nearer to the Egyptian original."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

Moses and the Egyptian Priesthood

(1) The Priest Magicians

"The House of Life was a building, or perhaps a small group of buildings, where the library of the temple was kept and where the custodians of the knowledge of the temple studied. Here the layman would come it he had a problem and needed a magic spell or charm. The priests could interpret dreams, supply incantations to make someone fall in live, cure an illness, dispense magic amulets, or counteract malevolent influences. To maintain their powers, the priests kept their books away from the few laymen who could read. Indeed secrecy was an important part of their business. In the

"Their treasure papyri were kept in a secluded section of the House of Life, often in niches dug into the walls of the temple. There was an important House of Life at Edfu, a great temple dedicated to Horus. Edfu is the best preserved temple in all of Egypt, as it was covered in sand until recent times. On one of the walls of the temple is engraved a list of the sacred books kept in the House of Life. Along with the books on rules of the temple, inventories of the temple holdings, and religious calendars, there were numerous books on magic. These give us an idea of the powers supposedly possessed by priest-magicians of ancient Egypt:

The Book of Appeasing Sekhmet
The Book of Magical Protection of the King in His Palace
Spell for Warding Off the Evil Eye
The Book of Repelling Crocodiles
The Book of Knowledge of the Secrets of the Laboratory
The Book of Knowing the Secret Forms of the God."

"Eventually, the priesthood became a tremendous bureaucracy numbering thousands of men. There were hundreds of temples dedicated to the various gods, and each temple was somewhat autonomous, having its own hierarchy and division of labors. However, all temples had similar offices with extreme specialization of services.  "Perhaps one of the most important functions of the priests was caring for the cult statues of the gods, or 'oracles'. Only a select few of the priests were permitted to enter each temple's holy of holies and care for the oracle. This involved presenting food before the god several times a day, clothing him in the morning, sealing the chamber in the evening, and so forth. These priests were called the stolists by the Greeks, because they were in charge of the clothing of the god."
- Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic

In the New Kingdom of Egypt, "the service performed about the image [of the god] takes place in private. In theory at least, it is the privilege of the priest of the highest rank. It takes place at that point in the temple furthest removed from the entrance and the court, in a chamber where there is no room for the general public, in pitch darkness. For the structure of the temple, including the sanctuary, was completely roofed over; light penetrated the ante-room only sparingly through apertures in the ceiling and walls. The Egyptian gods would have shared Yahweh's wish 'that he would dwell in thick darkness' (I Kings 8:12). Consequently it is said of the divine image that it is 'less accessible than that which is in heaven, more secret than the affairs of the nether world, more (hidden) than the inhabitants of the primeval ocean'....We are told, although only briefly: God, the Distant One, is made present in the image by he daily service. Therefore he is really present in the temple, which is also visualized as an image of the world, combining heaven and earth; it is in fact a representation of the world, combining heaven and earth. In particular the shrine of the deity is simply called 'heaven', or with an eye to its doors 'the doors of heaven'."
- Siegfried Morenz, Egyptian Religion

"The dwelling of god - its abomination is clamor. Pray thou with a loving heart, all the words of which are hidden, and he will do what thou needest, he will hear what thou sayest, and he will accept thy offering..."
- Ani II 2f (supplement to Hymn of Thoth)

"At the entrance to the sanctuary in the Horus temple at Edfu we find, in varying phraseology, an inscription to the effect that the god, as a winged sun-disk, takes a delight in his temple and his images".
- Siegfried Morenz, Egyptian Religion

He "comes daily from Naunet [the underworld] to see his image at his great seat. He descends to his image and joins his falcon idols'."
- Inscription at Edfu

"Most frequently of Amun, these statues were kept in shrines of stone and were carried about in shrines made of guilded wood, much like the sacred barks sailed on the Nile by the pharaoh during festivals. These portable shrines rested on two long wooden poles, so that they could be carried about on the shoulders of the priests during religious ceremonies.  "According to various ancient texts oracles could nod their heads and even talk. Since no talking oracle statue has ever been found, we are not certain how this was done. Perhaps the priests surreptitiously pulled strings to make the head nod or, divinely inspired, spoke for the god."
- Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic

"Prince Khaemwaset, son of Ramses II, was reputed to be a great magician as well as being the first Egyptologist. A number of folktales were written about his magical powers, but he was merely one of many attributed with these gifts. Other famous magicians included the vizier and architect of King Djoswer (2630 BC), and Djedi who, in the tale of 'Cheops and the Magicians', entertained the king by perfoming feats of magic and predicting future events."
- Great Events of Bible Times

"First Prophet of the God"

Moses "simply means 'born of'. The name normally required another name prefixed to it, such as Thothmoses (born of Thoth), Rameses (born of Ra) or Amenmosis (born of Amen) Whilst the 'moses' element is spelt slightly differently when rendered in English, they all mean the same thing and it seems very likely to us that either Moses himself or some later scribe dropped the name of an Egyptian god from the front of his name."  The birth narrative of Sargon I, who ruled over Babylon and Sumer hundred of years before Moses states his mother "set me in a basket of rushes; with bitumen she sealed my lid. She cast me into the river, which rose not over me."

"...The birth story is almost certainly a fiction created in the sixth century BC echoing, for the birth of the Jewish nation, the ancient theme of creation emerging from the waters."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

"And Moses became learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words and in deeds."
- Acts 7:22

"Moses was a skilled performer of magical rituals and was deeply learned in the knowledge of the accompanying spells, incantations, and magical formulas of every description...[Moreover] the miracles which he wrought...suggest that he was not only a priest, but a magician of the highest order and perhaps even a Ker Heb [Egyptian High Priest]."
- Sir E. A. Wallis Budge, From Fetish to God in Ancient Egypt

"At the top of the hierarchy of priests was the high-priest, the sem priest, or 'First Prophet of the God'. He would have been an extrmely learned man, an elder of the temple, a man with considerable administrative ability and political sense. He would have been in charge of seeing that the temple and all its hodings ran smoothly, and officiating at the most important ceremonies. While normally such a man would have risen to his position through the ranks, it was the pharaoh's perogative to place whomever he wanted in that office.
- Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic

"Moses, a son of the tribe of Levi, educated in Egypt and initiated at Heliopolis, became a High Priest of the Brotherhood under the reign of Pharaoh Amenhotep [Akhnaton]. He was elected by the Hebrews as their chief and he adapted to the ideas of his people the science and philosophy which he had obtained in the Egyptian mysteries; proofs of this are to be found in the symbols, in the Initiations, and in his precepts and commandments....The dogma of an 'only god' which he taught was the Egyptian Brotherhood interpretation and teaching of the Pharaoh who established the first monotheistic religion known to man."
- Egyptian High Priest Manetho (3rd Century BC)

"If Moses was a High Priest of the Brotherhood under Akhnaton, as Manetho states, but did not lead the exodus until the reign of Rameses II, as many historians believe, then Moses must have been an extremely old man at the time of the exodus. (Rameses II did not rule until almost one hundred years after Akhnaton.) The Bible, in Deuteronomy 34:7 states that Moses was 120 years old when he died."
- William Bramley, The Gods of Eden

Concealed Mysteries

"...The teaching of Akhanjati (Akhnaton, 1361- c. 1340 BC) was abandoned in essence (belief in Jati [erroneously known as 'Aton' ]) immediately after the king's death, whereupon the gods who had been expelled were permitted to return; nevertheless the idea that there was a basic unity in plurality received a powerful impetus and was to have tremendous historical consequences. The existence after the end of the Amarna period of a trinity comprising Amon, Re and Ptah, a trinity in which there is no 'second' figure, is hardly accidental."

"...Behind the countless deities in the pantheon there was a growing awareness of the existence of a single God. Ordinary believers offered their prayers to one God; the theologians provided this God, whichever one it might be, with supreme and extensive power; they gave him an appropriate identity, choosing from the wealth of forms available; and they forged a dialectical unity between the one god and the many gods in the pantheon."

"...The intimate link that existed between temple and ritual on one hand and personal piety on the other...was...based on a single belief in a living God at work everywhere in the world."
- Siegfried Morenz, Egyptian Religion

"The Egyptians concealed mysteries that were above the capacity of the common herd under the veil of religious rites and hieroglyphic symbols."
"It was the most ancient opinion that the planets revolved about the sun, that the earth, as one of the planet, described an annual course about the sun, while by a diurnal motion it turned on its axis, and that the sun remained at rest."
- Sir Isaac Newton

"...Moses...was frequently compared to Thoth (indeed, in the second century BC an entire work was filled with such comparisons by the Judaeo-Greek philosopher Artapanus, who credited the prophet with a range of remarkable and clearly 'scientific' inventions)."  Sir Isaac Newton believed that "Moses understood that matter consisted of atoms, and that these atoms were hard, solid and immutable: 'gravity accrued to both atoms and to the bodies they composed; gravity was proportional to the quantity of matter in every body'."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"Moses, that ancient Theologue, describing and expressing ye most wonderful Architecture of this great world, tells us that ye spirit of God moved upon ye waters which was an indigested chaos, or mass created before by God."
- Sir Isaac Newton

Newton's favorite biblical passage was:

"And I will give the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the Lord, which call thee by they name, am the God of Israel."
- Isaiah 45:3

After killing an Egyptian hitting a Habiru, Moses "went on the run, heading east into the Sinai where he was taken in by the Midianites (also called Kenites) and where he married the king's daughter, Zipporah.  "It was here that Moses was introduced to the god of the Midianite tribes, a god of storms and of war whose symbol was a crucifix-like motif worn on their foreheads; it later became known as the 'Yahweh Mark'. This god, who lived in the mountains, provided the inspiration and central theme for the God of the Jews following Moses's conversations with Him on Mount Horeb."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

The Mysteries of Syrius

The Dogon

The Dogon tribe in Mali "are cultural, and probably also physical, descendants of Lemnian Greeks who claimed descent 'from the Argonauts', went to Libya, migrated westwards as Garamantians (who were described to Herodotus), were driven south, and after many, many centuries reached the River Niger in Mali and intermarried with local Negroes.  "The Dogon preserve as their most sacred mystery tradition one which was brought from pre-dynastic Egypt by 'Dannaos' to the Greeks.'"
- Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery

"The starting point of creation is the star which revolves round Sirius and is actually named the "Digitaria star"; it is regarded by the Dogon as the smallest and heaviest of all the stars; it contains the germs of all things. Its movement on its own axis and around Sirius upholds all creation in space. We shall see that its orbit determines the calendar."
- Marcel Griaule and Germain Dieterlen in African Worlds

According to Temple, the Dogon knew that Sirius had an invisible companion (the white dwarf star Sirius B). "The Dogon name for Sirius B consists of the word for star, tolo, and po, the name of the smallest seed known to them. By this name they describe the star's smallness - it is, they say, 'the smallest thing there is.' They also claim that it is 'the heaviest star' (since in it the element earth is replaced by an immensely heavy metal called sagala), so heavy 'that all earthly beings combined cannot lift it.' And the color of the star is white. The Dogon thus attribute to Sirius B its three principal qualities as a white dwarf: its smallness, heaviness, and whiteness. They go on to say that the start's orbit is elliptical, with Sirius A at one focus of the ellipse, that the orbital period is 50 years (the actual figure is 50.04 plus or minus .09 years), and that the star rotates on its own axis. The Dogon also describe a third star in the Sirius system, called Emme Ya ('sorghum female'). In orbit around this star, they say, is a single satellite. To date Emme Ya has not been detected by Western astronomers."
- Reader's Digest Mysteries of the Unexplained

"The Dogons considered Sirius B to be far more important than it larger and brighter companion. They also possessed knowledge of the third luminary as well as a small planet in the system and there is some confusion as to whether the third star was believed to be a smaller sun or simply a large planet, since this ancient African tribe also made reference to the 'shoe-maker's planet' and a 'planet of women'."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

"The Dogon say that their astronomical knowledge was given to them by the Nommos, amphibious beings sent to earth from the Sirius star system for the benefit of humankind. The name comes form a Dogon word meaning 'to make one drink', and the Nommos are also called Masters of the Water, The Monitors, and The Instructors. They came to earth somewhere to the northeast of the Dogon's present homeland. When their vessel landed (after a 'spinning or whirling' descent and with a great noise and wind), it skidded to a stop, scoring the ground....At that time a new star (perhaps a mother ship) was seen in the sky."
- Mysteries of the Unexplained (from Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery)

"As (the ark) landed, the weight of the ark caused the 'blood' to spurt to the sky and gave the star of the tenth moon [pelu tolo] reality and brilliance."
- Dogon oral tradition

"The Dogon also describe this 'star' specifically as having a circle of reddish rays around it, and this circle of rays is 'like a spot spreading' but remaining the same size."
- Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery

" After the landing, something with four legs appeared and dragged the vessel to a hollow, which filled with water until the vessel floated in it.
" According to Dogon art, the Nommos were more fishlike than human, and they had to live in water. They were saviors and spiritual guardians:
- Mysteries of the Unexplained (from Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery)

Across the ancient middle east was a tradition that powerful beings or Sons of God were not only the spiritual guardians of men - they were the masters and owners.

The Nommo divided his body among men to feed them; that is why it is also said that as the universe 'had drunk of his body', the Nommo also made men drink He gave all his life principles to human beings."
- Dogon oral tradition

"The Nommo was crucified and resurrected and in the future will again visit the earth, this time in human form. Later he will assume his amphibious form and will rule the world from the waters."  "...In Babylonian accounts of Oannes, amphibious beings who came to this planet for the welfare of the human race. Their vehicle was egg shaped, and they landed in the Red Sea.  "The Oannes 'had the shape of a fish blended with that of a man', a 'complicated form between a fish and a man'; they were 'semi-demons - halfway between men and gods'. Their appearance was repulsive."
- Mysteries of the Unexplained (from Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery)

Temple "says that the Dogon have a traditional belief in Sirius B, which claim that it's made of a material called sagala (translation: 'strong') " so heavy that all earthly beings combined cannot lift it. The Dogon also accept the idea that the Earth revolves around the Sun, and are aware of the 4 Galilean moons of Jupiter and Saturn's rings...This was all discovered in the 1930s, when the Dogon were anthropologically investigated."

"Sirius B was discovered in 1862 (not 1962) by Alvan Clark as he was testing the new lens he'd made for Dearborn Observatory's 18 1/2 inch refracting telescope. He at first thought he'd found a defect in the lens, but he finally realized he'd discovered the companion star that had been suspected since 1844. From 1834 to 1844 F.W.Bessel had noticed a wavy irregularity in the motion of Sirius against the background stars, and had concluded that it had an invisible companion. The orbit of the proposed compainion had been calculated in 1851 by C.H.F.Peters. By 1910 astronomers began to realize that there were a class of stars, eventually called white dwarfs, which were very small and dim, yet very massive, which meant they had to be incredibly dense. In 1915 the first spectrum of Sirius B was obtained by W.Adams at Mt.Wilson, which is all that would have been needed to classify it as a white dwarf. However, I couldn't find any information on when it was indeed realized that Sirius B was a white dwarf."

"Saturn's rings and Jupiter's Galilean moons had been known since the invention of the telescope. By 1930 four more of Jupiter's moons had been discovered, however, the fifth was found as late as 1892 by E.E.Barnard, and the rest followed as photography came into use as an astronomical tool around the turn of the century.

"As for a third star, Phillip Fox reported in 1920 that the image of Sirius B had appeared to be double, using the same 18 1/2 inch refractor with which Clark discovered B. R.T.Innes in S.Africa and van den Bos, a renowned double-star observer, also reported the 3rd star. I should note here that these were visual studies, and the object in question is at the very limit of what can be observed with a telescope. In 1973 a study by I.W.Lindenblad at the U.S.Naval Observatory concluded that there is no astrometric (measurement of irregularities of motion against the background, probably on photographs) evidence for a 3rd star."

"My conclusions: Nothing extraordinary need be invoked to account for the Dogon's knowledge. Someone probably gave the Dogons the information, probably after 1920. I admit there are inconsistencies: anyone astronomically knowledgeable enough to know about Sirius B would most likely have known about the additional moons of Jupiter, but then again, so would any hypothetical visitors from beyond. Also, why did the Dogons claim that this was part of their traditions? By the way, I could not confirm the Dogons knowledge of a 3rd star. This is unfortunate, as it would prove beyond doubt that they were given all this information by someone, as the modern study showed no such star exits."
- Tom R.(randolph@est.enet.dec.com)

The Guardian Star of Egypt

"The earliest Egyptians believed Sirius [Sothis] was the home of departed souls, which the Dogons also believe."
- Robert Temple, The Sirius Mystery

"In the astronomical science of the Egyptians, the most conspicuous solar system near our own, represented in the heavens by the brilliant Sirius, was of supreme interest. Cycles of immense importance were determined by it, and it entered into the highest mysticism of Egyptian initiation."
- G.R.S. Mead, Thrice Greatest Hermes

"Beneath the high-priest were a whole cadre of priests with specialized training. Among these were the 'horologers', or 'priests of the hours', whose job it was to determine as precisely as possible the hours of the day and night. This was crucial to the functioning of the temple, since various rituals had to start at precise times. These priests, through watching the progress of the sun or stars across the sky, determined when the rituals should being."
- Bob Brier, Ancient Egyptian Magic

"Sirius was the guardian star of Egypt, its rising greatly affecting the life of everyday folk through the yearly inundation from the Nile."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

"Contrary to other rivers, [the Nile] begins its annual swelling in the hottest time of the year, at the beginning of the dog Days, that is, at the moment when Sirius rises at the same time as the sun, a date which during the third millennium BC coincided with the summer solstice."
- Lucy Lamie, Egyptian Mysteries

"The predynastic Egyptians worshipped the feminine principle, the great mother goddess [Tuart] represented by the seven stars of Ursa Major and her child Sirius the dog star, or Set. Sirius was also represented by the same symbol as his mother, whom he is supposed to have fecundated."
- Peter Tompkins, The Magic of Obelisks

"Sirius is the one consecrated to Isis, for it brings the water."
- Plutarch

"...To ancient initiates Isis was a symbol of Sirius and Osiris a symbol of the Dark Companion of Sirius; but he is not aware of Crowley's and Levi's insistence that the traditional secret revealed in the Eleusian Mysteries was that 'Osiris is a black god!'"  "... The familiar symbol of Isis, with a star above her and one of her feet in water and the other on land, is a symbol of the Sirius connection..." (Atu XVII of the Tarot - The Star)

"Temple also demonstrates that the whole Egyptian calendar revolved around the movements of Sirius - the year began with the 'dog days' when Sirius started to rise behind the sun (July 23 in our calendar) ...that the earliest hieroglyphic for Osiris (the God of Resurrection and of Eternal Life) was an eye plus a throne; and that the most secret of the rituals of Osiris, the 'black rite,' is described on one Hermetic text as being so cryptic in its total meaning that men will only understand it fully when they pursue the stars 'unto the height'..."

According to Philip Vandenberg, The Curse of the Pharaohs, "an archeologist named Duncan MacNaughton discovered in 1932 that the long dark tunnels in the Great Pyramid of Cheops function as telescopes, making the stars visible even in the daytime. The Greater Pyramid is oriented, according to MacNaughton, to give a view, from the King's Chamber, of the area of the southern sky in which Sirius moves throughout the year."
- Robert Anton Wilson, Cosmic Trigger

"A north/south section of the Pyramid of Cheops shows that the two so-called 'air-shafts' leading out from the King's Chamber are, within one degree of accuracy, inclined so that the northern one is centered on the celestial Pole and the southern one on the three stars of Orion's Belt. Virginia Trimble pointed out that, in the light of the ancients' mystic sense, it is obvious that these openings were meant to be guide ways for the soul, aiming either towards the Circumpolars in the northern sky or to the constellation of Orion in the southern sky."

"In the north at the approximate time of the pyramid's construction in 2700 BC, the Pole was occupied by Alpha Draconis, the star around which turned the Circumpolars - called the 'Indestructibles' since they never disappear below the horizon. Thus they were the symbol of immortality. The King then, triumphant over the trials of terrestrial life, will ascend imperishable in the northern sky.

"From the southern sky, the ancients had chosen thirty-six stars or constellations, the decans, whose consecutive helical risings occurred approximately every ten days. The rising of each decan occurred after it had passed seventy days of invisibility, a period corresponding to that of mummification. Among these stars are Osiris (Orion) and Isis-Sothis (Sirius), symbols of yearly renewal, of the regeneration of the Nile, of cyclic death and rebirth."
- Lucy Lamie, Egyptian Mysteries

The Dog Star in Magical Traditions

"To find in the BLAZING STAR of five points an allusion to Divine Providence is also fanciful; and to make it commemorative of the Star that is said to have guided the Magi is to give it a meaning comparatively modern. Originally, it represented SIRIUS, or the Dog Star."
- General Albert Pike, Morals and Dogma

Sirius, the dog star, stands for the spirit of wisdom in the Zoroastrian tradition.

"Temple believes the Contact (which he tends to portray as physical, involving actual space-ships) occurred in Sumeria around 4500 B.C. The knowledge thus gained, he argues was passed on via various secret societies of initiates in the Near East, Egypt, Greece and so on, at least until the time of the 5th century (A.D.) neo-Platonist Proclus. Thereafter, Temple loses track of it, and suggests that it petered out, although he mentions that off-shoots of it appeared in 'such bizarre and fascinating figures as Giordano Bruno, Marsilio Ficino, John Dee and even Sir Philip Sidney and the Earl of Leicester - not to mention the troubadours of Provence, Dante in Italy, and the massacred tens of thousands of Albigensians in France, the Knights Templar and an infinite rage of hopeless causes over two and a half millennia...'"

"Kenneth Grant, one of Crowley's closest associates in the Ordo Templi Orientis, repeatedly links Crowley with Sirius and seems to be hinting that the 'Holy Guardian Angel' contacted by Crowleyan mind-expansion techniques is a denizen of Sirius. J.G. Bennett, one of the closest of George Gurdjieff's associates, also tells us of coded references to Sirius in Gurdjieff's writings. Sufi historian Indries Shah traces the name of the Illuminati back to a verse in the Koran which mentions a shining star, and Crowley's alternative name for the Illuminati was the Order of the Silver Star (Argentum Astrum)."
- Robert Anton Wilson, Cosmic Trigger

"The Order of the Silver Star is thus the Order of the Eye of Set, 'the Sun behind the Sun.' ...The Silver Star is Sirius."
- Kenneth Grant, Aleister Crowley and the Hidden God

"George Hunt Willamson, a flying saucer Contactee, claims to have spoken to natives of Sirius who use a language containing some to the same words as the 'Enochian' or 'angelic' language used by such magicians as Dr. John Dee and Crowley. Williamson also tells us a secret order on Earth has been in contact with Sirius for thousands of years and that the emblem of that order is the eye of Horus."
- Robert Anton Wilson, Cosmic Trigger

"Many reliable psychics and mystics firmly subscribe to the idea of a special gene, or personalized 'time capsule', programmed with the knowledge of the 'old ones' who came from the Sirius system centuries ago; this gene has been passed down from generation to generation to the present day. From this Sirian genetic strain a new school of magic has emerged."
- Murray Hope, Practical Egyptian Magic

Canaan/Jewish

Biblical Beginnings in Canaan: The Mighty Bronze Age Empire

"In 1964, Dr. Paolo Matthiae, professor of Near East archaeology at the University of Rome began to excavate Tell Mardikh in north-western Syria [forty kilometers south of Aleppo]. It soon became clear that they were excavating the ruins of the ancient city of Ebla. In 1975, as the dig progressed down to Early Bronze Age levels, a remarkable find was made in the form of nearly 20,000 clay tablets which constituted the royal archives of the city. These tablets date back to the middle of the 3rd millenium BC, almost 4,500 years ago. They are written in Sumerian wedge-shaped cuneiform script which is the world's oldest known written language. Deciphering these tablets, Professor Pettinato, also of the University of Rome, found the language used to be what he called Old Canaanite' even though the script was cuneiform Sumerian. This very ancient language is closer in vocabulary and grammar to biblical Hebrew than any other Canaanite dialect', including Ugaritic; this therefore gives evidence as to the age of the Hebrew language."
- John Fulton, "A New Chronology - Synopsis of David Rohl's book 'A Test of Time'"

"The documents "reveal the existence of a mighty Canaanite empire in Syria that also embraced Palestine around 2400 BC which no one had suspected before; its capital was at Tell Mardikh - an ancient, all-but-forgotten city called Ebla."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"The city was a large one of 260,000 inhabitants; it traded widely over the known world at that time. A flourishing civilisation existed with many skilled craftsmen in metals, textiles, ceramics, and woodwork. It existed 1,000 years before David and Solomon and was destroyed by the Akkadians in around 1600 BC.
- John Fulton, "A New Chronology - Synopsis of David Rohl's book 'A Test of Time'"

"Amongst the hundreds of place names in the commercial and diplomatic texts, of special interest to Biblical scholars are references to places and vassal cities in Palestine like Hazor, Gaza, Lachish, Megiddo, Akko, Sinai, and even Jerusalem itself (Urusalima).

"But perhaps the most intriguing names are those personal names which also appear in the Bible; names from the 'Patriarchal Age' like Ab-ra-mu (Abraham), E-sa-um (Esau), Ish-ma-ilu (Ishmael), even Is-ra-ilu (Israel), and from later periods, names like Da-'u'dum (David) and Sa-'u-lum (Saul). The most tantalizing adumbration is the name of Ebrum (Biblical Eber), third and greatest of the six kings of the Ebla dynasty between 2400 and 2250 BC. He seems to have been placed on the throne of Ebla by Sargon the Great of Akkad after a punitive expedition in which Ebla was subjugated. But after Sargon died (c.2310 BC), Ebrum turned the tables on Akkad and reduced its cities to vassalage in turn. It was not until 2250 that Sargon's grandson, Narum-Sin of Akkad, was able to throw off the yoke of Ebla by conquering the city and putting it to the torch."

"It may be pure coincidence that this powerful king of Ebla, King Ebrum, should have had the same name as Eber, from whom the Hebrews traced their descent....(coincidentally, Arab historians have traditionally dated Abraham to c.2300 BC)."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"Tablet 1860 names the five cities of Genesis 14:2 in the same order, i.e. Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, Zeboiim and Zoar. Up until the discovery of the Ebla tablets, the existence of these biblical cities was questioned; yet, here they are mentioned as trade partners of Ebla. This record predates the great catastrophy involving Lot when Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed.  "Also included in the archive are very early Canaanite creation and flood stories which very closely resemble that of the Bible."
- John Fulton, "A New Chronology - Synopsis of David Rohl's book 'A Test of Time'"

"...The rich coastal city of Ugarit [destroyed in 1200 BC]...traded widely throughout the Fertile Crescent and across the Mediterranean....Ugarit's accountants used a twenty-six letter cuneiform alphabet, an invention that would take writing out of the atmosphere of the ancient temples, away from the sacred obscurities of pictographs into a secular, demotic script which people of many different nations could easily adapt. This was a direct forerunner of modern Western alphabets as well as biblical Hebrew."

"Its literature was Canaanite and it is the traditions of that society that influenced the Old Testament. Even so, the scribes of Ugarit well knew of the city Jerusalem and its nearby holy Mount Zion; for the hill was known by that same name, which in Ugaritic Canaanite means 'the seat of a god'. Many Old Testament characters, too, have typically Canaanite names: Absalom and Solomon even hold in them the name of the Canaanite god of the evening star, Solom, just as does the name of Jerusalem itself. That numerous biblical terms for the articles of daily life, for clothes, perfumes and furniture were also Ugaritic, emphasizes the fact that this influence was not only linguistic but extended into the paraphernalia of daily life."
- John Romer, Testament

"According to the Biblical narrative, the migration into Canaan [of the Hebrew tribes] was led by Abraham, who came from the region of Haran that lies in the angle of the Euphrates northeast of Syria. There is good evidence that this was his ancestral home; archaeological findings have confirmed that customs presupposed in Genesis existed in this area. It is also recorded that Abraham moved to Haran from Ur in Chaldea, where he had settled; his move that may reflect the fact that in the nineteenth century B.C., Ur was destroyed by invading Elamites....Abraham's religion, so far as we can tell, centered on his belief in a god whom he called El-Shaddai, 'Divinity of the Mountains'. There is evidence that his tribe also venerated ancestral images."
- Ninian Smart, The Religious Experience of Mankind

Although the Bible refers "Ur of the Chaldeas", the Chaldean kingdom did not exist until many centuries after Abraham, but was contemporaneous with the date when Genesis was set down in writing.

"One chapter of Genesis recounts that the god commanded Abraham to slay his son Isaac, then eight years old, but stayed Abraham's hand at the last moment and asked him to slaughter a ram instead. Religious interpretations explain the episode as a test of Abraham's faith. But some scholars see the story as evidence that human sacrifice as a religious practice was not beyond the patriarchs' acceptance. It is known that the Canaanites of the Second Millennium BC did follow the custom (although it apparently was waning), because excavations a shrine near the city of Gezer have yielded clay jars containing the charred bones of babies."
- The Israelites

Background on the Old Testament

As for the scholars whom have spent much time as to when the various books of the Old Testament were written, and who the writers were, its interesting to note the numerous theories that have burst forth and instead of trying to find verifiable evidence to prove credibility for those beliefs have instead sought after a following of credulous peers and subordinates.  Some have stated that it is hard to date the writings because of the long period of time that has transpired since the works were composed and compiled; and that they 'may' have undergone innumerable changes as the result of "editors" and/or "copyists" over the years. Yet some have no problems in stating that the works were someone's whimsical attempt to glorify the Israelites and was made up around the tenth century B.C.E. Many of these scholars have overlooked the history of the Scriptures and seem to ignore that their present form came into being only two thousand four hundred years ago; and that these works of history and prophesy are condensed from what were much larger works of the Israelites that were lost between the second and forth centuries C.E. From this period the changes in the scriptures are well recorded or known to us, however the original works from which they came hopefully are safe somewhere still, that we may find them and be able to settle the disputes and throw away the erroneous theories.

"At that time Jorobabel, having by his wisdom overcame his opponents, and obtained leave from Darius for the rebuilding of Jerusalem, returned with Ezra to his native land, and by him inspired oracles were effected; and the Passover of the deliverance celebrated, and marriage with aliens dissolved."
- Clement of Alexandra (150-215 C.E.) , Miscellanies

Later in his book he mentions that the historian Philadelphus, writing on the origins of the Greek translations of the Old Testament, stated that the Scriptures had perished during the captivity of the Jews while in Babylon. And that at the time of Artxerxes king of the Persians, that Ezra the Levite priest having become inspired in the exercise of prophesy then restored again the whole of the ancient Scriptures.

So Ezra compiled and catalogued the books of the Israelite writings from sources from Persia to Egypt; and through his research wrote the books containing his peoples histories and the writings of the prophets (much of the histories were contained in the body of the prophetic works), quoting as much as he was inspired; he included their genealogy and his commentary in the Scriptures. This is evidenced as one reads through the various books; of Genesis; Exodus; Numbers; Joshua; Judges; Samuel; Kings; Chronicles: and the prophets (especially Isaiah).

The list of books used to put together the scriptures are mentioned in many places. For convenience I will list them here:

The book of the beginnings;
The books of Eden;
The acts of the Patriarchs;
The acts of Moses;
The book of the laws given to Moses (Joshua 23:6);
The book of Numbers;
The book of Wars of the Lord (Numbers 21:14);
The book of Jashar, the upright (Joshua 10:13, II Samuel 1:18);
The acts of Joshua;
The oracles of Balaam (Numbers 23:24);
The books of the Judges of Israel (a separate one for each judge);
The words and deeds of Samuel the seer (I Chronicles 29:29);
The acts of David (I Chronicles 27:24), which the Psalms were found;
The words of the days of Nathan the seer (I Chronicles 29:29;
The words of the days of Gad the seer (I Chronicles 2:29);
The acts of Solomon (II Chronicles 9:29),
which contained the song of Solomon, the proverbs and ecclesiastics:
The prophesy of Ahi'zah (II Chronicles 9:29);
The visions of Iddo (II Chronicles 9:29);
The words of the days of Iddo (II Chronicles 13:22);
The words of the days of Shemai'ah (Samaria (II Chronicles 12:15);
The words of the days of Jehu the seer, son of Hana'ni (II Chronicles 20:34);
The words of the days of Isaiah the prophet, son of Amos (II Chronicles 26:20);
Commentary on the writings of the Kings (II chronicles 24:27);
The words of the days of the seers (II Kings 21:17);
The writings of the days of the kings of Judah (by Jehu);
The writings of the kings of Israel (by Jehu).

There are some other sources as well, but due to wars throughout the near and Middle East within the last two thousand years, many of these have been lost or destroyed to a point that when found does not make much sense....There were several non Hebrew historians that mention times for the best known of the kings and some others, but these works have rarely been found wholly intact. The early church fathers in Alexandra did however, in a lot of their writings included quotations from authors of quite a few works that were a part of the famed Library there in Egypt. What we know about the sources that Ezra used is that these works have been shown to contain words and phrases that originated or were common use in four distinct time periods; these are the 24th to 22nd, 14th, 10th, and 5th centuries B.C.E. The fact that the Scriptures contain words and phrases of ancient origin which in surrounding cultures had been discontinued shows continuity of understanding of the language of which the text was written to be from those times, not of a more recent period and not some concoction.

Looking into the Babylonian writings of the sixth and seventh centuries B.C.E., it appears that this culture had a imperfect knowledge of Jewish Scriptures as well as the people themselves due to the loss of the sacred writings upon their captivity, but this did not stop the Babylonians from trying to copy the tales of Jewish people. The tradition of every male of Israel to keep a verse of the sacred writings with them stems in memory of the total loss of their most precious heritage when lead into exile.

One of the last items faced concerning the Scriptures is of more recent origin and may account for the vast majority of the linguistic problems that occur. I refer to the reworking of the Hebrew language by the Masorites and Tiberians, between the 6th to 12th centuries C.E. The Masorites were responsible for many of the alterations in the vowels and definitions of the Hebrew words. In that the language had not been a spoken one for at least a hundred years before their endeavor, and not until 1948 was it brought back to life again after not being spoken for nearly 1600 years. This is one reason why meanings of a number of words are unknown thus making it difficult for the modern scholar to rely solely on the Hebrew version as the last authority. This is why the tablets from Ebla are still important as the language is akin to the Hebrew and can give us a clearer understanding of 'uncertain' words.

- Rev. Robert Palmer (private correspondence)

The Assembly of Gods

"...Genesis is in two parts: 1:1 - 11:9 is the first part, and is probably Babylonian in origin, since it ends with the founding of Babylon. The second part, 11:10 - 50:9 is probably Arabian in origin, since it focuses on desert tribes, and their God, El. El is the most common Babylonian-Syrian-Arabian name for God."
- Paul Trejo

"The Canaanites evidently knew nothing of the elaborate pantheon and cosmogony of the Mesopotamians, which probably reflects the relative simplicity of their lives. Their interest was to correlate and explain the various forces of nature and society in all the complexity of harmony and tension, but to declare their dependence on the gods and to placate them"

"Corresponding to Anu in Mesopotamia, the king paramount in the celestial court was El ('God'), who give his sanction to all decisions among the gods affecting nature and society. He is father of the divine family and president of the divine assembly on the 'mount of assembly', the equivalent of Hebrew har mo'ed, which became through the Greek transliteration Armageddon. In Canaanite mythology he is known as 'the Bull', symbolizing his strength and creative force, and is probably represented in the elderly god who is blessing a worshipper on a limestone sculpture from Ras Shara. In the myths he is termed bny bnwt, which might mean 'Creator of Created Things', but which we take to mean 'Giver of Potency', according to his role in two royal legends from Ras Shamra, but he is generally depicted as sitting aloof and indeed remote, enthroned at 'the outflowing of the (two) streams'. This recalls the Biblical Garden of Eden, from which a river flowed to form the four rivers, Tigris, Euphrates, Gihon and Pishon."
- John Gray, Near Eastern Mythology

"Thou givest them water from the flowing stream of thy delights (gan 'eden, the Garden of Eden.)
For with thee is the fountain of life."
- Psalm 36:9

El "was known as the Creator God, the Kindly One, the Compassionate One. He expressed the concept of ordered government and social justice. It is noteworthy that the Bible never stigmatizes the Canaanite worship of El, whose authority in social affairs was recognized by the Patriarchs. His consort was Asherah, the mother goddess, represented in Canaanite sanctuaries by a natural or stylized tree (Hebrew ashera).
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

In Canaan, the king "is described as 'the Servant of El', as King David was 'the Servant of God'. This describes the status of the king as the executive of the will of the divine king. This duty is understood to be a privilege as well as a burden."
- John Gray, Near Eastern Mythology

"All names like Ishmael, Michael and Israel are theophoric in form - that is to say, the suffix element (-ilu or -el) represents a divine name, in this case the paramount god El. But during the reign of Ebrum, Dr Pettinato noted a change in the theophoric element, from -el to -ya(w), so that Mi-ka-ilu became Mi-ka-ya(w) and so on. It is quite clear that both of the endings are divine names, either names of gods or words simply meaning 'god'; so it looks as if Ebrum made some major alteration in the religion of Ebla at this time. Whether -ya(w) is related to the Biblical Yahweh, the one God of Israel whose name replace the earlier form of El, is a matter for debate..."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"We sometimes find the most surprising survival of Canaanite mythology in monotheistic Israel. An example is the conception of God as president of a court of the gods, bene'el, whether thought of as a divine guild or as the divine family, 'el here of course of a proper name, El (God) the King Paramount. The psalm in Deuteronomy 32 begins by rating Israel for her lapses from the faith and ends with the assurance of the destruction of her enemies. The history of Israel is depicted as originating in the apportionment of Israel to her God Yahweh by the Most High in the assembly of 'the sons of El' (so the ancient Greek version for the meaningless Hebrew 'the sons of Israel', a desperate effort to avoid embarrassment). The date of this poem is a matter of dispute. The condemnation of Israel's gross apostasy, the statement of the divine chastisement and particularly the assurance of relief and the affliction of her enemies is reminiscent of the framework of the narratives of the great Judges in Judges 3:7-12:6, which may be dated c.900 B.C. Deuteronomy 32:8 f then represents the first stage of the Israelite adaptation of the conception of God's presidency of the divine court from Canaanite mythology. The conception of God simply as first among divine peers was not one with which Israel could remain long content, and was soon countered by the specific rebuke of the divine court."
- John Gray, Near Eastern Mythology

"God has taken His place in the assembly of the gods (lit. 'sons of El'),
He declares His judgment among the gods: '
How long will you give crooked judgment,
and favor the wicked?
You ought to sustain the case of the weak and the orphan;
You ought to vindicate the destitute and down-trodden
You ought to rescue the weak and the poor,
To deliver them from the power of the wicked
You (Hebrew 'they') walk in darkness
While all earth's foundations are giving away.
I declare 'Gods you may be,
Sons of the Most high, all of you;
Yet you shall die as men,
You shall fall as one of the bright ones."
- Psalm 82:1-7

"In the final line we read sharim for sarim ('princes'), from which it is indistinguishable in the Hebrew manuscripts, and find another reference to the fall of Athtar the bright Venus star in Isaiah 14:12 ff and in the myth of Baal."
- John Gray, Near Eastern Mythology

Yahweh, the God of Israel

"In the Middle Bronze age, groups of Canaanites moved into northern Egypt and established a local dynasty called the Hyksos, who eventually took over the whole of Egypt. Only in the Late Bronze Age, in about 1550 BC, did the Egyptian pharaohs expel the Hyksos, launch a military campaign against Canaan, and bring it under Egyptian control. Egypt imposed heavy taxes on Canaan, but in return the Canaanite cities gained security and better access to international markets. In the reign of Ramses II (1304-1237 BC), the empire was reorganized. Key strategic cities like Beth Shan and Gaza were strengthened, others were allowed to decline. Many people were made homeless and migrated to the Judean hill country, where they established small farming settlements. These dispossessed Canaanites, known to the Egyptians as Hapiru (or Hebrews), formed the basis of what was to become Israel."
- Bible Lands

"...A popular theory among Biblical scholars today is that Israel emerged from peoples indigenous to Canaan in the mid 12th century BC. If this is true, then Biblical history and chronology prior to ca. 1150 BC would have to be jettisoned. Proponents of the '12th century emergence theory' maintain that the Israelites did not come into Canaan from outside to conquer the land around 1400 BC, as the Bible indicates. The emergence scenario would also reject the historicity of the Wilderness Wanderings, Exodus, Egyptian Sojourn and the Patriarchal narratives. However, if Israel were an established entity in Canaan already in 1210 BC, as the Merneptah Stela implies, then the 12th century emergence theory would be refuted (Bimson 1991, 'Merenptah's Israel and recent Theories of Israelite Origins'. Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 49: 3-29). If Israel was well established by the end of the 13th century, it could not have come into being in the middle of the next century."
- Bryant G. Wood of Associates for Biblical Research, "The Merneptah Stela"

"....Israel was initially an association of villages in the Bethel and Samaria hills from about 1230 BCE. This group of people possessed oral traditions about a common ancestor, Jacob, and stories about the struggles of tribal leaders with Canaanite cities (cp. Genesis 34, Judges 4-5 and 9, and possibly Joshua 9 and 12). The villages may also have been united by faith in Yahweh, who had delivered the ancestors of some of those now settled in Canaan from slavery in Egypt. Among these people there was probably a group who were custodians of the stories about the Exodus and who observed the Passover. Judah was a separate entity with traditions about an ancestor, Abraham, who had settled in the Hebron area, and traditions about tribal leaders who had fought against Canaanite cities (cp. Judges 1: 11-17, and possibly Joshua 10). We are not suggesting that the traditions as now written down in the Old Testament are identical with their oral form or content in the period 1230 to 1050 BCE."
- John Rogerson and Philip Davies, The Old Testament World

The Protoindo European god Yayash, Yaë or Yave, a protective god whose symbol was a tree, signifying possibly '"walking", "going", "a pilgrim", has been dated back to the Indus River valley, circa 2900 B.C.E. He has been identified with the Turko Syrian Yahveh, a "sacred animal or organization".

"Yahweh appears to have been originally a sky god - a god of thunder and lightning. He was associated with mountains and was called by the enemies of Israel 'a god of the hills'. His manifestation was often as fire, as at Mount Sinai and in the burning bush."

"A shorter form, 'Yah', was also used (Exodus 15:2) and some scholars believe that this is the older form, originating in an exclamation to God - 'Yah!' - which came to be accepted as the divine name. Others claim that it is from the root 'hayah', 'to be' or 'to become', and that it meant 'I am that I am' or I will be that I will be'. According to one tradition of the call of Moses, the divine name Yahweh was revealed to him in Egypt:"
- Great Events of Bible Times

"To Abraham, Isaac and Jacob I appeared as El Shaddai, but I did not make the name Yahweh known to them'."
- Exodus 6:3

"Every Egyptian magician...believed that he who possessed the true name possessed the very being of god or man, and could force even a deity to obey him as a slave obeys his master. Thus the art of the magician consisted in obtaining from the gods a revelation of their sacred names, and he left no stone unturned to accomplish his end."
- Sir James Frazer, The Golden Bough

"God instructed Moses that he should return to Egypt in order to lead his people out of their bondage there. Before agreeing, however, the prophet asked the name of the strange and powerful being who had addressed him ['in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush']....The Lord, however did not respond directly to the prophet's question. Instead he replied briefly and enigmatically with these words: "I AM WHO I AM'. By way of further clarification he then added: 'I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob' [Exodus 3:14 and 3:6]."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"To the Hebrew mind the 'name' stands for 'nature', and in answer to Moses' plea to be given an immediate sight of God, God promises to reveal just as much of his 'nature' that mortal man could bear."
- Marshall Cavendish, Genesis & Exodus

In Exodus "God was no longer simply 'El' (plural 'Elohim'), but YHWH ('I am that I am'), which in the Authorized Version was transliterated as 'Jehovah' by combining the Hebrew consonants and the vowels of the Hebrew word for 'Lord' when excessive reverence had made later Jews reluctant to pronounce the divine name itself, nowadays called Yahweh. The covenant with Yahweh elevated the concept of worship from a hopeful appeasement of the willful and haphazard forces of nature to a dynamic and determined arrangement with none other than the sole creator of the universe."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"Originally, these four consonants [in YHWH] represented the four members of the Heavenly Family: Y represented El the Father; H was Asherah the Mother; W corresponded to He the Son; and H was the Daughter Anath."
- Laurence Gardner, Bloodline of the Holy Grail, p. 18

"When all the people witnessed the thunder and lighting, the sound of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking, they were afraid and trembled and stood at a distance..."
- Exodus 20:18

"As specifically the name of the Covenant God, it was thereafter used of the Israelite deity, often in contrast with the gods of other peoples. With the Covenant, Yahweh had adopted Israel as his people and, as a jealous god, demanded total allegiance from them. They were to worship no other god but Yahweh. Much later, the Jewish exiles in Babylon were given an explicit statement of Yahwistic monotheism. 'I am Yahweh, and there is no other, there is no other god but me'(Isaiah 45:5)."
- Great Events of Bible Times

"The stories of this meeting are told in Exodus 19-34, chapters which combine several different sources, laws and notions of God's encounters with his people. They are a wonderful jungle, parts of which are now dated, convincingly, by scholarly argument to the seventh and sixth centuries BC."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"The 'P' scribe is usually associated with the opening version of the creation story (Genesis 1) as well as with the use of the term Yahweh for God. He is also claimed to be the later of the two that is to have drafted this version approximately around the 5th century during the Babylonian exile. The 'J' scribe is usually viewed as the author responsible for the earlier rendition of the story (Genesis 2,3,4) and to have drafted this account around 8th century B.C.E. He is also commonly associated with the scribe using the term Elohim for God."
- "The Text: What is Its Age and Who Wrote It"

"...When the Israelites came to worship their god under the name of Yahweh...the term El as a name for 'god' survived only in the old narrative about the patriarchs and in some literary forms, such as the Psalms. In much the same way, the obsolete 'thee' and 'thou' survive in modern liturgical usage and in poetry, although the words long ago dropped out of spoken English."
- The Israelites

"One of the earliest heroes from the time of the initial invasion was the warrior Jerubbaal who later changed his name to Gideon. (His original name was certainly Canaanite honoring the god Baal, which probably illustrates that at the time Yahweh was not as entrenched as the later authors of the Old Testament would like us to believe.)"

"For many, Yahweh was no more than the Israelite war god, useful in time of battle but a fairly lowly figure when viewed against the full pantheon of the gods. The names given to notable Israelites down the ages whose a strong respect for Baal, and even the most ardent Yahwist would not pretend that the Jews of this period believed in only one god."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

"The servants of the king of Aram said to him, 'Their gods are gods of the hills, and so they were stronger than we; but let us fight against them in the plain, and surely we shall be stronger than they.'"
- I Kings 20:23

"In Moab, the Number One was called Chemosh; in Israel, people looked especially (but not solely) to Yahweh: it is most striking that Saul, the first king, gave one of his sons a name after the god Baal and that his other so, Jonathan did the same. From time to time Chemosh or Yahweh might be angry with their worshippers, and, as a result (people believed), their wars or weather could be unpredictable. To win Chemosh or Yahweh's favor, they had to offer animals and pay worship in their temples. Eventually, the gods' anger would moderate (in due course people's fortunes improved, if only from bad to less bad), and meanwhile the priests lived off the necessary offerings. All the while, worshippers were realistic about death. At best there might be a ghostly existence for a few people in an underworld, but when they died, they died for ever. Their bodies returned to earth which nobody would judge or bring back to life."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"Beginning in the seventh and sixth centuries BCE, several Israelite writers (especially Jeremiah, the Deuteronomist, and Second Isaiah) explicitly rejected the notion that there were gods other that Yahweh, and depicted the 'hosts of heaven' as a foreign intrusion in Israelite monotheism."
- Oxford Companion to the Bible

The Temple of Solomon

Construction of Solomon's Temple

Iron Age or Late Bronze Age?

During the period traditionally assigned to the era of Solomon - Iron Age IIA (1000 to 900 B.C.E.) - "the so-called cities of Megiddo, Gezer and Hazor, and Jerusalem itself were in reality more like villages....Within were relatively small public buildings and poorly constructed dwellings with clay floors. The objects reveal a material culture which, even by the standards of the ancient Near East, could not be judged sophisticated or luxurious...The 'magnificence' of the age of Solomon is parochial and decidedly lackluster, but the first book of Kings implies exactly the opposite."
- Prof. James Pritchard, Solomon and Sheba (1974), p. 35

"...Byblos is rich in fine stone buildings from the Bronze Age. However, when it comes to the Iron Age (which is purportedly the time of Solomon and his ally, Hiram of Tyre) there are no stone buildings at Byblos. How then did Solomon acquire building expertise from Phoenicia if the Phoenicians did not have the skill or resources to build stone structures for themselves?"
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 174

"... He (Solomon) also built cities which might be counted among the strongest, Hazor and Megiddo, and the third Gezer, which had indeed belonged to the Philistines's; but Pharaoh, the king of Egypt, had made an expedition against it, and besieged it, and taken it by force: and when he had slain all it's inhabitants, he utterly overthrew it, and gave it as a present to his daughter, who married Solomon, for which reason the king rebuilt it, as a city that was naturally strong, and might be useful in wars, and the mutations of affairs that sometimes happen."
- Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews

"Pharaoh, king of Egypt had gone up and captured Gezer and burnt it with fire, and has slain the Canaanites's who dwelt in the city, and had given it as dowry to his daughter, Solomon's wife; So Solomon rebuilt Gezer."
- I Kings 9:15

According to archaeologists, Gezer was rebuilt on the ruins of the fourth city with a larger circumference and walls measuring 14 feet in thickness. The brick towers belonging to the old wall were filled with scarabs, beads, fragments of pottery and other objects contemporary with the reign of Egyptian Pharoah Amenhotep III.

"As for myself I have discovered from our own books, that after Pharaoh, the father-in-law of Solomon, no other king of Egypt did any longer use that name: and that it was after that time when the fore mentioned queen of Egypt and Ethiopia came to Solomon."
- Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews

"The thought that crossed many scholars' minds was that the name or title of Pharaoh continued and the Josephus was in error. But Josephus was relating that the family name after this king had died ceased and was not continued even by his own offspring. This again pointed to Ikhnaton, Amenhotep III and included queen Tiy [mother of Ikhanton] as well."
- Rev. Robert Palmer (private correspondence)

Ikhanton (or Akhenaten) was the controversial pharaoh who attempted to revive the worship of the sun god. Tutankhamun was probably Akhenaten's son by a minor wife and ruled from the age of nine to twenty. After his death, Tutankhamun was succeeded by a courtier named Ay, then a general, Horemheb who branded Akhenaten a heretic and attempted to destroy any trace of him. As far as Egyptian history was concerned, the last legitimate ruler of the 18th dynasty and the last person to use the name Amenhotep was Amenhotep III.

"Solomon made an alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt and married his daughter. He brought her to the City of David until he finished building his palace and the temple of the LORD, and the wall around Jerusalem."
- I Kings 3:1

"Solomon married Pharaoh's daughter so one might expect a certain amount of Egyptian influence in the artistic tastes of the Solomonic court. If we look at some of the ivories from Megiddo's LB II palace we find a number of Egyptian motifs, including papyrus plants, lilies and lotus flowers (the floral motifs of Upper and Lower Egypt), as well as palm trees and winged sphinxes."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 178

"Then the king made a great throne inlaid with ivory and overlaid with fine gold. The throne had six steps, and its back had a rounded top. On both sides of the seat were armrests, with a lion standing beside each of them. Twelve lions stood on the six steps, one at either end of each step. Nothing like it had ever been made for any other kingdom."
- I Kings 10:18-20

In addition a court scene depicted in ivory also shows Egyptian elements. "First, above the chariot horses is a winged sun-disk, second, the queen offers a lotus flower to her husband; and third the king is seated upon a throne, the sides of which are guarded by winged sphinxes (i.e., human-headed lions)."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 178

"After Pharaoh's daughter had come up from the City of David to the palace Solomon had built for her,he constructed the supporting terraces."
- I Kings 9:24

"The only Egyptian architectural remains ever found in Jerusalem may be identified with the palace of Pharaoh's Daughter, constructed by Solomon after the completion of the Temple of Yahweh in the king's 11th year...These remains date to Late Bronze IIA-B and are contemporary with the reigns of the Egyptian Pharaohs Haremheb (late-reign) and Seti I."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 184

"Excavations at Megiddo built during this period,which I Kings 9:15 records as being built up by Solomon, revealed a Late Bronze Age palace 50 metres long with two-metre thick walls, a royal treasure-room with a magnificent hoard of treasures and the richest collection of Canaanite carved ivory yet discovered in Palestine (Yigael Yadin of the University of Jerusalem)."
- John Fulton, "A New Chronology - Synopsis of David Rohl's book 'A Test of Time'"

"The great courtyard was surrounded by a wall of three courses of dressed stone and one course of trimmed cedar beams, as was the inner courtyard of the temple of the LORD with its portico."
- I Kings 7:12

The building technique used in the gate of the late Bronze Age city of Megiddo (when it reached its cultural zenith) consisted of three courses of ashlar blocks built on top of a basalt foundation. This is identical to the technique used by Solomon and his Phoenician craftsmen according to the Bible - and to that employed in the Late Bronze Age Palace of Ugarit in Phoenicia.

"When Solomon built the Temple of Yahweh in Jerusalem, he erected two great pillars which flanked the entrance to the cella of the building. They were called Jachin and Boaz [I Kings 7:15-22]. Temple 2048 at Megiddo also has a pair of columns guarding the entrance..."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 178

"Here is the account of the forced labor King Solomon conscripted to build the LORD's temple, his own palace, the supporting terraces [or the Millo], the wall of Jerusalem, and Hazor, Megiddo and Gezer."
- I Kings 9:15

"The massive Late Bronze Age stone terracing system constructed along the eastern slopes of the City of David is to be identified with the Jerusalem Millo, constructed in the reign of Solomon..."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 181

A Massive Project

Josephus, in referring to the final destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem in 70 C.E., refers back to the Temple of Solomon:

"However, one cannot but wonder at the accuracy of this period thereto relating; for the same month and day were now observed, as I said before, wherein the holy house was burnt formerly by the Babylonians. Now the number of years that passed from its first foundation, which was laid by king Solomon, till this its destruction, which happened in the second year of the reign of Vespasian, are collected to be one thousand one hundred and thirty, besides seven months and fifteen days; and from the second building of it, which was done by Haggai, in the second year of Cyrus the king, till its destruction under Vespasian, there were six hundred and thirty-nine years and forty-five days."
- Flavius Josephus, Wars of the Jews, Bk VI, Ch V, Sn 8

By Josephus' reckoning, the Temple was begun by Solomon ca. 1060 B.C.E.

"Solomon's original Temple had probably been little more than a private chapel adjoining the royal palace. The words for 'temple' and 'palace' were, of course, interchangeable in Persian, Hebrew, and Greek-a legacy from the time when the ruler was God's surrogate on earth, a symbolic role that was often more burden than privilege, and at times more dangerous than glamorous. The priesthood were the real rulers."
- Paul William Roberts, Journey of the Magi (1995) p. 277

"Solomon succeeded his father David as king of the United Kingdom of Israel and Judah around 965 BC, though some scholars think it was lightly later, around 960 BC; he began work on the Temple in the fourth year of his reign, and the structure took seven and a half years to complete (I Kings 6)."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"The foundation of the temple of the LORD was laid in the fourth year, in the month of Ziv. In the eleventh year in the month of Bul, the eighth month, the temple was finished in all its details according to its specifications. He had spent seven years building it. "
- I Kings 6:37-38

"The building of the First Temple dedicated to Yahweh was begun in the fourth regnal year of King Solomon...circa 968 [B.C.]."
- David M. Rohl, A Test of Time: The Bible from Myth to History (1995), p. 115

"This was a great expense for the fledgling kingdom, and Solomon started to run out of money, with many cities being sold to pay off the mounting debts. The population had to endure forced labor, with gangs of ten thousand people being sent for monthly spells in the Lebanon to work for Hiram, king of Tyre."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

"We are informed in I Kings (chapter 3) that Solomon proceeded to organize the construction project (it involved, among others in the workforce, 80,000 stone quarriers and 70,000 porters) only after Yahweh had appeared unto Solomon in Gibeon 'in a nightly vision'. The construction, lasting seven years, began with laying the foundation stone in the fourth year of Solomon's reign and 'in the eleventh year, in the month of Bul which is the eighth month the Temple was competed in all its stipulations and exactly according to its plans'."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

The prototype for the Temple of Solomon was the Canaanite temple of Baal-Hadad in the Lower City of Hazor (c.1500-1200 BC). "The Hazor temple was build of three elements - a porch, a main hall and a Holy of Holies - situated one behind the other, on a north-south axis. The Holy of Holies lay to the north; it was a large room, measuring about thirteen by nine meters, with a deep niche in its northern wall. In the porch, or vestibule, were found two basalt pillar bases just in front of the entrance to the main hall. They had no structural function, and reminded Dr Yadin of the two enigmatic cultic pillars outside the porch of Solomon's temple, called 'Jachin' and 'Boaz' in the Bible. Of course there were significant differences, too. Solomon's Temple was oriented east-west, for instance; and Solomon's Temple would not have contained effigies on the gods such as were found at Hazor - only the Ark of the Covenant symbolizing the presence of the deity."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

Near East Prototypes

"In the Canaanites' view, a god actually dwelt in each sanctuary. But since the Israelites' god had no physical form, it needed not such earthly home. King Solomon erected his temple as a house for the sacred Ark of the Covenant, and thus reaffirmed Jerusalem as the spiritual - and political - focus of Israelite life."
- The Israelites

"The temple was designed with a large measure of uniformity over the whole of the Near East now recognizable as a microcosm of the womb. It was divided into three parts; the Porch, representing the lower end of the vagina up to the hymen, or Veil, the Hall, or vagina itself; and the inner sanctum, or Holy of Holies, the uterus. The priest, dressed as a penis, anointed with various saps and resins as representing the divine semen, enters through the doors of the Porch, the 'labia' of the womb, past the Veil or 'hymen' and so into the Hall."
- John M. Allegro, The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross

"Veneration of the primary female deity was of long standing in Canaan, where she took the form of the goddess Astoreth. She was equivalent to Ishtar, the major goddess of the Mesopotamians, whose Sumerian temple was at Uruk (the Biblical Erech, modern Warka). In nearby Syria and Phoenicia the same goddess was reported by the ancient Greeks to have been called Astarte.

"The Holy of Holies, or inner sanctuary, in Solomon's Temple was deemed to represent the womb of Ashtoreth (alternatively called Asherah, as mentioned several times in the Old Testament). Ashtoreth was openly worshipped by the Israelites until the 6th century BC. As the Lady Asherah, she was the supernal wife of El, the supreme male deity, and they were together the 'Divine Couple'. Their daughter was Anath, Queen of the Heavens, and their son, the King of the Heavens, was called He. As time progressed, the separate characters of El and He were merged to become Jehovah [YHWH]. Asherah and Anath were then similarly conjoined to become Jehovah's female consort, known as the Shekinah or Matronit."

"Originally, these four consonants [in YHWH] represented the four members of the Heavenly Family: Y represented El the Father; H was Asherah the Mother; W corresponded to He the Son; and H was the Daughter Anath. In accordance with the royal traditions of the time and region, God's mysterious bride, the Matronit, was also reckoned to be his sister. In the Jewish cult of the Cabbala God's dual male-female image was perpetuated. Meanwhile other sects perceived the Shekinah or Matronit as the female presence of God on Earth. The divine marital chamber was the sanctuary of the Jerusalem Temple, but from the moment the Temple was destroyed, the Matronit was destined to roam the Earth while the male aspect of Jehovah was left to rule the heavens alone." - Laurence Gardner, Bloodline of the Holy Grail, pp. 17-18

"There were three buildings specifically for sacrifice in Jerusalem. The one facing west was called 'the Holy'. Another facing south was called 'the Holy of the Holy'. The third facing east was called 'the Holy of the Holies', the place were only the high priest enters. Baptism is 'the Holy' building. Redemption is 'the Holy of the Holy'. 'The Holy of the Holies' is the bridal chamber. Baptism includes the resurrection and the redemption; the redemption takes place in the bridal chamber. But the bridal chamber is in that which is superior to it and the others, because you will not find anything like it."
- The Gospel of Philip

"The detailed architectural and construction information in the Bible in respect to Solomon's Temple calls its anteroom Ulam, its ritual hall Hekhal, and its holiest part Dvir. The latter, meaning 'Where the speaking takes place', no doubt reflected the fact that Yahweh spoke to Moses from the Ark of the Covenant, the voice coming from where the wings of the Cherubim were touching, and the Ark was placed in the Temple as the only artifact in the innermost enclosure, the Holy of Holies or Dvir. The terminology used for the two foreparts, scholars have recognized, comes from the Sumerian (via Akkadian): E-gal and Ulammu."
- Zecharia Sitchin, When Time Began

"Now the glory of the God of Israel went up from above the cherubim, where it had been, and moved to the threshold of the temple."
- Ezekiel 9:3:a

Solomon's "temple was divided into two parts, the holy of holies (adytum) and the temple proper. Curtains were hung of fine linen cloth brightly colored in hyacinth blue, purple and scarlet.

"Before the temple, on the right hand and the left, were placed two massive hollow pillars of brass eighteen cubits in height each surmounted by a capital five cubits high. These may have been modeled after the two pillars in the famous temple of Melkart at Tyre, one of which was overlaid with god. For this and other metal work in the temple Solomon sent to Tyre for a skilled bronze worker called Hiram Abiff.

"An altar of brass was made for the burnt offerings; a brazen 'sea' in hemispherical form was cast and set up on twelve brazen oxen that faced toward the four directions of the compass. Brazen bases for ten lavers were made ornamented with figures of lions, oxen and cherubim."
- Nina Jidejian, Byblos Through the Ages

The Bronze Sea

"...The Sea of cast metal, ten cubits from rim to rim, circular in shape and five cubits high; a cord thirty cubits long gave the measurement of its girth...It was a handbreadth in thickness, and its rim was shaped like the rim of a cup, like a flower. It held two thousand baths."
- 1 Kings 7:23, 26

"This 'Sea'...had stood in the courtyard of the Temple. It had been a hug bronze basin, fifteen feet in diameter and seven and a half feet high. It had weighted around thirty tons when empty but had normally been kept full with and estimated 10,0000 gallons of water. Most authorities admitted frankly that they did not know what its function had been -although some thought that it had symbolized the 'primordial waters' referred to in the book of Genesis and others believed that it had been used by the priests for their ritual ablutions....[However] the Bible state quite plainly that Hiram had made ten smaller bronze basis for precisely this purpose..."

"Is it not possible that the bronze 'Sea' which Hiram made for the courtyard of Solomon's Temple was a throwback to the ancient Egyptian rituals on which the ceremonies of the Ark appear to have been closely modeled? In the festival of Apet at Luxor the 'Arks' containing effigies of the gods were always carried to water. And this, too, is precisely what happens in Ethiopia today: at Timkat in Gondar the tabotat are carried to the edge of a 'sacred lake' at the rear of the castle. So perhaps the bronze Sea was a also a kind of sacred lake?"
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

Note that the tradition of sacred lakes/pools may date back to Sumerian times:
"Most ancient, pagan, Mesopotamian Urfa had worshipped gods of the sun and moon and stars, a faith that survived in the surrounding countryside until the Middle Ages, when the Crusaders found a remnant priesthood still at their rituals in ancient ruined temples. The cult had come to Urfa [Turkey] and it neighboring cities from southern Mesopotamia. In those days several cities had sacred pools like those at Urfa; some of them with stone altars that stood out of the water and the priest who would swim to their daily devotions were surrounded, it is said, by leaping, by sacred fish, so tame that they would come to you if you called their names. One especially celebrated carp, and ancient author says, carried a golden jewel upon its upper fin."
- John Romer, Testament

The Holy of Holies

"Into the Holy of Holies none might pass save the High Priest, and he only at certain prescribed times. The room contained no furnishings save the Ark of the Covenant, which stood against the western wall, opposite the entrance. "
- Manly P. Hall, Masonic, Hermetic, Quabbalistic & Rosicrucian Symbolical Philosophy

"Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel...And the priests brought in the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord to its place in the Temple...in the Holy of Holies...And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the cloud filled the house of the Lord, so the that priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of the Lord. Then spake Solomon, 'The Lord said that he would swell in the thick darkness. I have surely built thee a house to dwell in, a settled place for thee to abide in forever...But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?'"
- 1 Kings 8: 1, 6, 10-11, 27

"There was...a real sense in which the Temple appeared to have been built less as an earthly palace for a dearly beloved but incorporeal deity than as a kind of prison for the Ark of the Covenant. Within the Holy of Holies, above the two cherubim that faced each other across the relic's golden lid, Solomon had installed two additional cherubim of giant size - grim guardians indeed, with wingspans of fifteen feet or more, all covered in gold."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"There in the Holy of Holies (a curtained inner chamber) were kept the Ark of the Covenant containing the Tablets of the Law and other tokens of the deliverance from Egypt and the sojourn in the wilderness of Sinai. There Solomon reinstituted all of the cultic acts commanded to Moses on Sinai, the daily sacrifices, the feasts of the New Moon and the New Year, the Day of Atonement, and the three great pilgrimage festivals of Passover, Weeks, and Tabernacles. A body of Aaronite priests and ministering Levites served in the Temple."
- An Encyclopedia of Archetypal Symbolism

"It follows that the place of the Holy of Holies was ten cubits square, and there were put the ark, and the pot of manna, and the pan of anointing oil, and Aaron's rod with its almonds and flowers...."
- The Talmud, Chapter VI

"...The Holy of Holies itself...had been a perfect cube, foursquare and immensely strong. Measuring thirty feet long, by thirty feet wide, by thirty feet high, its floor, its four walls and its ceiling had been lined with pure gold, weighing as estimated 45,000 pounds, and riveted with golden mails."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"...The cubit dimensions of the inner chamber of the Temple, the Holy of Holies, are precisely identical in size to the King's Chamber in the Pyramid and the same volume as the molten sea of water on the Temple Mount as prepared by King Solomon. "
- Grant R. Jeffrey, "Appointment with Destiny"

The Temple of Baal at Palmyra

"And Solomon went to Hamath-zobah [fortress of Zobah], and prevailed against it. And he built Tadmor in the wilderness, and all the store cities, which he built in Hamath."
- 2 Chronicles 8:3-4

Tadmor
"Tadmor: 'palm', a city built by Solomon 'in the wilderness' (2 Chr. 8:4). In 1 Kings 9:18, where the word occurs in the Authorized Version, the Hebrew text and the Revised Version read 'Tamar,' which is properly a city on the southern border of Palestine and toward the wilderness (comp. Ezek. 47:19; 48:28). In 2 Chr. 8:14 Tadmor is mentioned in connection with Hamath-zobah. It is called Palmyra by the Greeks and Romans. It stood in the great Syrian wilderness, 176 miles from Damascus and 130 from the Mediterranean and was the center of a vast commercial traffic with Western Asia. It was also an important military station.

"Remains of ancient temples and palaces, surrounded by splendid colonnades of white marble, many of which are yet standing, and thousands of prostrate pillars, scattered over a large extent of space, attest the ancient magnificence of this city of palms, surpassing that of the renowned cities of Greece and Rome."
-Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary

In the precincts of the Temple of Baal or Bel at Palmyra, "there was the huge ablutions pool-the 'sea of bronze'-In front of the raised cella or holy of holies, the temple's focal point, the walls around it lined with porticoes whose columns are still standing. Next to the ritual pool was 'the altar of the holocausts,' Just like the huge sacrificial altar where Solomon had slaughtered 144,000 sheep and oxen. The cella was once surrounded by a colonnade, with capitals fashioned from bronze. Only the stone cores now remain, but the limestone lintels joining this colonnade to the wall behind still show the profusion of motifs - pomegranates, winged figures and animals - that the Bible recounts Solomon decreeing for his temple."

"Depicted on the limestone lintel joining this colonnade, "a camel bore the great image of Baal toward an altar, passing by a group of elegant women wearing the traditional Palmyrene dress, a simple draped cloth tied at the middle. Following these, though, was another group of women who were veiled, their heads bowed in humble reverence, their whole demeanor far from the proudly independent stance of their Palmyrene sisters. These were Semitic women, beyond doubt; but were they Hebrews or Arabs?"

"The altar itself was heaped with offerings of the kind we read about in the Solomonic accounts: pomegranates, pine cones, fat bunches of grapes, a goat. And worshipping at the altar itself were two figures, both men in typical Parthian dress. The Parthians were an Iranian tribe from an area southeast of the Caspian Sea; but many Diaspora Jews also occupied this area. In the New Testament (Acts 2:9) we hear of Parthian Diaspora Jews present at the first Christian Pentecost. The followers of Simon Magus were Diaspora Jews, Western Magi, linked closely to their Eastern counterparts."

"Inside the cella were still more surprises. This sanctum sanctorum consists of two open shrines facing each other, both reached by steps, both containing huge square ceilings of elaborately carved monolithic slabs. The one to the left of the entrance, however, has a zodiac circling its lotuslike design; and the one on the right contains exceptionally fine geometric designs within a virtually identical multipetaled floral form. The Palmyrene trinity of Baal, Yarhibol, and Aglibol is also represented in the cella. Yet the opposing shrines were what I found most astonishing. They are overtly Hindu-Buddhist, with the lotus forms and a reappearing entwined swastika motif prominent among the geometrical designs."
- Paul William Roberts, Journey of the Magi (1995) pp. 341-342

Hamath/Hama, Syria
"Hamath: "Fortress", the capital of one of the kingdoms of Upper Syria of the same name, on the Orontes, in the valley of Lebanon, at the northern boundary of Palestine (Num. 13:21; 34:8), at the foot of Hermon (Josh. 13:5) towards Damascus (Zech. 9:2; Jer. 49:23). It is called 'Hamath the great' in Amos 6:2, and 'Hamath-zobah' in 2 Chr. 8:3.  "Hamath, now Hamah, had an Aramaean population, but Hittite monuments discovered there show that it must have been at one time occupied by the Hittites. It was among the conquests of the Pharaoh Thothmes III. Its king, Tou or Toi, made alliance with David (2 Sam. 8:10), and in B.C. 740 Azariah formed a league with it against Assyria. It was, however, conquered by the Assyrians, and its nineteen districts placed under Assyrian governors. In B.C. 720 it revolted under a certain Yahu-bihdi, whose name, compounded with that of the God of Israel (Yahu), perhaps shows that he was of Jewish origin. But the revolt was suppressed, and the people of Hamath were transported to Samaria (2 Kings 17:24, 30), where they continued to worship their god Ashima. Hamah is beautifully situated on the Orontes, 32 miles north of Emesa, and 36 south of the ruins of Assamea.

"The kingdom of Hamath comprehended the great plain lying on both banks of the Orontes from the fountain near Riblah to Assamea on the north, and from Lebanon on the west to the desert on the east. The 'entrance of Hamath' (Num. 34:8), which was the north boundary of Palestine, led from the west between the north end of Lebanon and the Nusairiyeh mountains."
-Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary

"You shall draw a line from Mount Hor to the Lebo-hamath [or 'entrance of Hamath'], and the termination of the border shall be at Zedad; and the border shall proceed to Ziphron, and its termination shall be at Hazar-enan. This shall be your north border."
- Numbers 34:8-9

"The boundary shall extend from the sea to Hazar-enan at the border of Damascus, and on the north toward the north is the border of Hamath. This is the north side. The west side shall be the Great Sea, from the south border to a point opposite Lebo-hamath. This is the west side."
- Ezekiel 47:17-20

The Enigmatic Fate of the Ark

Chronicles of the Two Kingdoms

(1) Astarte and Asherah in Jerusalem

"In my view, the Hebrew books of chronicles were exactly what the author of Kings believed: genuine records of the king's public deeds and major events, copies of which had survived the catastrophes of 722 and 587 and were available to an inquiring Jew in the years of Exile. Probably, these 'chronicles' were primary records or at the very least based directly on such primary material. The biblical references to them show that they referred not only to royal building works and new cities, to deeds of might and war, but also to conspiracies and revolts. These contents are entirely credible, from what we know of royal annals or chronicles in other near Eastern monarchies."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"When Solomon grew old his wives swayed his heart to other gods; and his heart was not wholly with Yahweh his God as his father David's had been. Solomon became a follower of Astarte, the goddess of the Sidonians."
- 1 Kings 11: 4-5

"For the Temple of Solomon, desecrated by the priests, no Hebrew prophet or initiate cared a straw. Elijah never went to it, nor Elisha, Jonah, Nahum, Amos, or any other Israelite. While the initiates were holding to the 'secret doctrine' of Moses, the people, led by their priests, were steeped in idolatry exactly the same as that of the Pagans."
- M. P. Blavatsky, Isis Unveiled

It should be noted that these prophets followed the Galilean tradition which adhered to a more strict interpretation of the Law than the Judeans to the south in Jerusalem.

"...All of the kings from c. 1025 to 586 B.C. in both Israel and Judah, not more than half a dozen 'did right in the sight of the Lord'. The rest 'build for themselves high places pillars, and Asherim on every high hill and under every tree....And the people continued to sacrifice and burn incense on the high places'."
- Joseph Campbell, Creative Mythology

"Some of the Hebrew inscriptions invoke a blessing by Yahweh and by his asherah, the wooden image of a goddess, a female consort for Yahweh himself. At first sight the idea that Yahweh was worshipped with a female partner by Hebrew-speakers seems unexpected, but evidence of similar worship had already been know from an inscribed pillar of the later eighth century (found in a cave near Lachish) and from papyri which were left by a colony of Jews at Elephantine in Egypt during the fifth century BC. Scripture, after all, contains a long polemic from its Deuteronomist against the worship of wooden asherah from the reign of Ahab onwards: Yahweh alone...was the view of only one group in Israel. If Solomon could partner hundreds of foreign women, why could not God have a female beside him from time to time."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"They set up for themselves pillars and Ashe'rim on every high hill and under every green tree; and there they burned incense on all the high places, as the nations did whom the Lord carried away before them. And they did wicked things, provoking the Lord to anger, and they served idols, of which the Lord had said to them, 'You shall not do this'."
- 2 Kings 17:10-12

"The asherah, or moon tree, or tree of life, or tree of knowledge, or pomegranate tree, sometimes fig tree, was sacred to the fertility goddess. It acquired its name, asherah, 'source of life', from the resemblance of its ripe fruit...to the ultimate Source of All Life, the Mother's sacred asherah [vulva]...Yahweh's great enemy, the goddess Ashtaroth, sometime called Lilith ['Night'], was often depicted as the tree, with a tree-trunk, branches and crescent-moon head. The juice of the asherah was variously called soma, nectar, and several lesser-known names. It was believed to be the drink of the gods and to confer immortality upon all who drank it. The fruit was regarded in Egypt and elsewhere as the flesh of the Mother, so that to eat the fruit of knowledge from the tree of life was to consume the very asherah of the asherah, and to become one with the goddess and share in her resurrection."
"The Yahwist wrote his Adam-and-Eve fable around 920 BCE. There no risk of the symbolism that he used being misunderstood. Solomon's policy of religious toleration, so hateful to Yahweh's self-styled spokesmen ('prophets') had led to the establishment of asherahs, vulva-shaped shrines to the Mother, throughout Israel and Judah. The Yahwist's purpose in using the tree of knowledge imagery would have been clear even without the personal appearance of the goddess in her traditional serpent form [Leviathan]."
- William Harwood, Mythologies Last Gods: Yahweh and Jesus

Waves of Invasions

After Solomon, "during the ninth century the relations between the royal houses of Tyre, Israel and Judah were still close. Ithobaal of Tyre married his daughter Jezebel to Ahab of Israel, son of Omri, and Jezebel's daughter Athalia married Joram of Judah. Since Elissa of Carthage was Ithobaal's great-granddaughter, Jezebel was her great-aunt. Phoenician builders were still helping the Israelite kings. We see their work in the time of Omri and Ahab at Samaria as well as at Megiddo, where the famous stables, once thought to be Solomon's, are now ascribed to Omri."
- Donald Harden, The Phoenicians

Shishak, Pharoah of Egypt - 930 B.C.E.
"During his reign Solomon engaged in a vast building program. Jeroboam became his most dangerous political opponent and fled to Egypt where he sought refuge in the court of Sheshonk I until Solomon's death. Heavy taxation imposed upon the people of Israel to finance the building program and political dissatisfaction under Solomon's son and heir, Rehoboam resulted in the secession under Jeroboam of the northern part of the Hebrew kingdom. Sheshonk I profited from this division and ca. 930 B.C. marched against Jerusalem. He returned to Egypt with the spoils of the temple built by Solomon, the golden shields and the treasures of the palace."
- Nina Jidejian, Byblos Through the Ages

David Rohl argues that Ramesses II, not Sheshkonk I, was the pharaoh identified as Shishak in 1 Kings.

"In the fifth year of king Rehoboam...Shishak king of Egypt came up against Jerusalem: And he took away the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king's house; he even took away all."
- 1 Kings 14: 25-6

"...The Pharaoh had surrounded Jerusalem but...had never actually entered it; instead he had been 'bought off with the treasures of Solomon's temple and palace. These treasures...would have consisted [mainly] of...public and royal donations dedicated to Yahweh. Such items, normally quite precious and made of silver and gold, were not stored in the Holly of Holies but rather in the outer precincts of the Temple in special treasuries that were always mentioned in the Old Testament conjointly with the treasuries of the king's house."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"Occasionally, these treasuries were depleted either by foreign invaders or by the kings themselves when they were in need of funds. The treasuries thus constantly oscillated between a state of affluence and want...The invasion of Shishak [had], therefore, nothing to do with the Temple sanctums, and it would be entirely inaccurate to associate [it] with the disappearance of the Ark."
- Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel (1978)

The Phoenicians - c. 830 B.C.E.
"And Chemosh said to me 'Go take Nebo from Israel.' I went by night and attacked it from daybreak to noon. I took it and killed all: 7,000 men, boys, women, girls and maidservants, because I had devoted it to destruction for Astarte-Chemosh. I carried off thence the [vases?] of Yahweh and dragged them before Chemosh."
- Mesha's stele in Moabite c. 830 BC

Jehoash, King of Israel - 726 B.C.E.
"And Jehoash king of Israel took Amaziah king of Judah...at Bethshemesh, and came to Jerusalem, and brake down the wall of Jerusalem...And he took all the gold and silver, and all the vessels that were found in the house of the Lord, and in the treasuries of the king's house."
- 2 Kings 14:12-14

"Jehoash did not even enter the Temple's outer sanctum, certainly not the inner one...The phrase 'the house of the Lord' mentioned in connection with Jehoash...is simply a shortened form of 'the treasuries of the house of the Lord'. This may be seen from the fact that the 'treasuries of the king's house' which are always contiguously mentioned with the 'treasuries of the house of the Lord' are also mentioned."
- Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel (1978)

Disaster Averted During Hezekiah

"Hezekiah began in 715 BCE for 29 years and his son began in 686 BCE for 55 years ending in 631 BCE. This is of course the old Bible chronology which gives the new age start of 747 BCE for Jotham and ends with the first of Cyrus II in 576 BCE. Josephus gives Persia a total reign of 246 years which ended when Alexander conquered it in 330 BCE. There is little doubt that the structure is not absolutely precise but on the whole made to reflect a true structure."
- Falk Koenemann, Aachen Technical University

According to Immanuel Velikovsky, the Temple of Jerusalem contained a brazen serpent (Neshusshatan from Nachash, "serpent" and athan, referring to the monstrous nature of the beast) which was destroyed by Hezekiah. The serpent was the great god of Phoenicia and Carthage.

King Hezekiah (c. 725 BC):

"Cut down the asherah: and he broke into pieces the bronze serpent that Moses had made, for until those days the people of Israel had burned incense to it; it was called Nehushtan."
- 2 Kings 18:4

"Hezekiah went up into the house of the Lord, and...prayed unto the Lord, saying, O lord of Hosts, God of Israel, that dwellest between the cherubim [the Ark], thou art the God, even thou alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth."
- Isaiah 37:14-16

After this, the Ark of the Covenant is no longer mentioned in the Old Testament and disappears into obscurity.

The Assyrians - 722 B.C.E.
"The northern kingdom of Israel came to an end in 722 BC with the capture of its capital, Samaria, by the Assyrians."
- Bible Lands

"In c. 722 the might of the Assyrians destroyed the northern kingdom, resettled its territory with their own colonists, deported some of the Israelites beyond the Euphrates and left the survivors to migrate south to Judah and Jerusalem. The Assyrians took no interest in Israel's prophets of total doom or in those who had broadcast the voice of Yahweh alone. From recently translated texts we know what Israelites meant to them: not prophets but drivers. We now have the royal horse lists of a contemporary Assyrian king, which show Israelites from the northern kingdom as very high officers in the horse units of the Assyrian army. They were not riders: they were drivers of chariots, a skill in Israel which was internationally famous, at least since the age of Ahab."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"I besieged and conquered Samaria, led away as booty 27,000 inhabitants, forming from among them a regiment of fifty chariots"
- from Assyrian annals

"These became the ten lost tribes of Israel. how only Judah and its little ally Benjamin remained in the southern kingdom, though the Kingdom of Judah, with its capital in Jerusalem, had long been subject to Assyrian control, as contemporary records show."
- John Romer, Testament

"The southern kingdom of Judah was also forced to submit to the might of the Assyrians, and although Hezekiah (715-686 BC) rebelled against the Assyrian king Sennacherib in 704 BC, the attempt was a disaster. In 701 BC Sennacherib swept into Judah and destroyed many cities..."
- Bible Lands

In answer to Hezekiah's prayer when the Assyrians surrounded Jerusalem:

"The angel of the Lord went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. So Sennacherib king of Assyria departed."
- Isaiah 37:36-7

The Wickedness of Manasseh

"From the book of Deuteronomy to 2 Kings, [an] underlying unity was decisively shown by Martin Noth in 1943. It is his elegant theory which presented us with a single author, writing the bulk of these books in the age of exile during the mid sixth century BC (the Deuternonomist, or D)."

"From Omri to Jeho, over fifty years, D picked and chose, distorted the timing and imposed his own bias: from Ahab's death to Jehu's glory, his narrative is highly untrustworthy. These errors are all the more telling because he had the royal chronicles of the Kings' reigns, primary sources which could have given him a framework of royal deeds. He also had the Elijah stories, with their tales of crimes as black as the murder of Naboth [by Jezebel]."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"...Before the exile there existed in written form parts of Genesis, Exodus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, and 1 and 2 Kings to 2 Kings 23: 25a. Originally, the material from Genesis to 1 Kings 10 had told the story of Israel from Abraham to David and Solomon. The second version had added 1 Kings 11 to 23: 25a, and had also edited Joshua to 2 Kings to make this, in fact, a separate work with a distinctive viewpoint: disobedience brings disaster, and kings must be faithful to the law of Moses."
- John Rogerson and Philip Davies, The Old Testament World

Regarding Manasseh (son of Hezekiah), who ruled from 687-642 B.C.E.:

"He did much that was evil in the sight of the Lord after the abominations of the heathen...For he...reared up altars for Baal...and worshipped all the host of heaven, and served them. and he built altars in the house of the Lord...for all the host of heaven...And he made his son pass through the fire, and...used enchantments, and dealt with familiar spirits and wizards: he wrought much wickedness in the sight of the Lord to provoke him to anger...And he set a graven image of the grove that he had made in the house, of which the Lord said to David and to Solomon his son, In this house, and in Jerusalem, which I have chosen out of all the tribes of Israel, will I put my name for ever."
- 2 Kings 21:2-7

"...The graven image of the grove' was in fact a 'carved image of asherah', an arboreal pagan deity...The 'houses' in which Yahweh had said that he would put his 'name for ever' was the Holy of Holies of the Temple - the debir, the dense golden cell that Solomon had 'designed...to contain the Ark of the Covenant of Yahweh'."

"The most likely scenario...was that he [Manasseh] would have ordered the Levites to remove the Ark from the Temple before he installed his 'asherah' in the inner sanctum."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"At Jerusalem...the Bible says there were temples for the gods of the Moabites, the Ammonites and several Phoenician deities too, including a shrine to Moloch in the Vale of Hinnom where human sacrifices were made - 'passed through the fire', as the Bible says. Some of Josiah's [King of Judah, grandson of Manasseh] predecessors are described as having thus sacrificed their children to gain a victory."
- John Romer, Testament

The Cleansing of Josiah

The first biblical reference to the Book of Moses was "with the discovery of the manuscript of Deuteronomy in Jerusalem...by King Josiah [Manasseh's grandson], after he ordered the temple cleansed and cleared..."
- Julian Jaynes, The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind

"Hilkiah the priest found a book of the law of the Lord given by Moses...[Hilkiah] said to Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of the Lord...And Shaphan read it before the king. And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the law, that he rent his clothes...great is the wrath of the Lord that is poured out upon us, because our fathers have not kept the word of the Lord, to do after all that is written in this book."
- 2 Chronicles 34:14-21

"...Heirs of the northern prophets came south with a basic text of such a law, composed before 750 BC: it is this 'law' or torah, to which Hosea alludes at that date. After the north's catastrophe in 722, its heirs expounded it in Jerusalem and attracted interest from individual members of the Temple priesthood."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

In 628 B.C.E., "the King, having verified the authenticity of the work through a prophetess named Huldah, implemented its requirements. This involved a wholesale destruction of temples and images devoted to gods other than Yahweh."
- Ninian Smart, The Religious Experience of Mankind

"And he brought out the grove [asherah] from the house of the Lord, right out of Jerusalem, unto the brook Kidron, and burned it in the brook Kidron, and stamped it to small powder, and cast the powder thereof on the common burying ground."
- 2 Kings 23:6

"Towards the end of the seventh century BC the young King Josiah tried to purge Jerusalem of the old fertility worship. Among his acts of desecration was the defilement of Topheth 'which is in the valley of the sons of Hinnom, that no one might burn his son or his daughter as an offering to Molech' (II Kings 23;10).

"Jeremiah also speaks of this Molech cult when he says of the wayward people of Jerusalem: 'They built the high places of Baal in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to offer up their sons and daughters to Molech..." (Jeremiah 32:35)
- John M. Allegro, The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross

"...Provincial shrines and cultic centers were closed down on Josiah's orders, and worship confined exclusively to the Jerusalem Temple."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"And when you have increased and become many in the land, then - it is Yahweh who speaks - no one will eve say again 'Where is the Ark of the Covenant of Yahweh?' There will be no thought of it, no memory of it, no regret for it, no making of another."
- Jeremiah 3:16-17 (composed by Jeremiah himself around 626 BC)

"This verse follows upon words of consolation and itself contains a message of consolation and mercy. What the prophet promises here is that in the good days to come there will no longer be any need for the Ark - implying that its absence should no longer cause any grief. These words would, of course, be devoid of any significance if the Ark [had] still...been inside the Temple at the time."
- Menahem Haran, Temples and Temple Service in Ancient Israel (1978)

By 622 BC:

"Josiah removed all the abominations throughout the territories belonging to the sons of Israel...And he set the priests in their charges, and...said unto the Levites that taught all Israel, which were holy unto the Lord, 'Put the Holy Ark in the house which Solomon the son of David king of Israel did build; it shall not be a burden upon your shoulders."
- 2 Chronicles 34:33; 2 Chronicles 35:2-3

On "the eighteenth year of his reign...having completed a lengthy nationwide purge...he returned to Jerusalem and issued orders 'to repair the house of the Lord his God'.

"The repairs had been duly carried out by 'carpenters and builders and masons'. The great mystery, however, was that the Levites had been unable to comply with Josiah's request that they should 'put the Holy Ark in the house which Solomon the son of David king of Israel did build'."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

The Babylonian Captivity

Destruction by Nebuchadnezzar

The Babylonians - 598 B.C.E.
"The troops of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon marched on Jerusalem, and the city was besieged. Nebuchadnezzar...himself came to attack the city while his troops were besieging it. Then Jehoaichin king of Judah surrendered to the king of Babylon, he, his mother, his officers, his nobles and his eunuchs, and the king of Babylon took them prisoner. This was the eighth year of King Nebuchadnezzar. The latter carried off all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king's house, and cut in pieces all the golden furnishings that Solomon king of Israel had made for the sanctuary of Yahweh."
- 2 Kings 24:10-13

"The Hebrew word that the translators of the Jerusalem Bible had rendered as 'sanctuary' was...hekal and its precise meaning was 'outer sanctum'....This meant that the 'sanctuary of Yahweh' spoiled by Nebuchadnezzar had not been the Holy of Holies in which the Ark had stood but rather the antechamber to that sacred place. The Holy of Holies itself, the inner sanctum - had been known in ancient Hebrew as the debir..."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

The other furnishings looted by Nebuchadnezzar included:

"...The lamp stands, five on the right and five on the left in front of the debir, of pure gold; the floral work, the lamps, the extinguishers of gold; the basins, knives, sprinkling bowls, incense boats, censers, of pure gold; the door sockets for the inner shrine - that is, the Holy of Holies - and for the hekal, of gold."
- 1 Kings 7:49-50

"...It had been the normal practice of the Babylonians at this time to seize the principal idols or cult-objects of the peoples they had conquered and to transport them back to Babylon to place in their own temple before the statue of their god Marduk. The Ark would have been an ideal candidate for this sort of treatment. Yet it had not even been stripped of its gold, let along carried off intact. Indeed neither it nor the cherubim had been mentioned at all."
"The logical conclusion is that the Ark and the gold-covered cherubim were no longer in the debir in 598 BC when the first Babylonian invasion took place - and, indeed, that the walls, floor and ceiling of the debir had also been stripped of their gold prior to that date."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"...Jerusalem fell, in the summer of 586, or 587 as some scholars opine. This time Nebuchadnezzar showed no mercy. The city was burned to the ground. The walls were torn down, leaving only the stumps of the foundations of the towers...and the Temple with its sacred Ark of the Covenant was looted and utterly destroyed."
- Magnus Magnusson, BC - The Archaeology of the Bible Lands

"Nebuzaradan, commander of the guard, an officer of the king of Babylon...burned down the Temple of Yahweh, the royal palace and all the houses in Jerusalem. The troops who accompanied the commander of the guard...broke up the bronze pillars from the Temple of Yahweh, the wheeled stands and the bronze Sea that were in the Temple of Yahweh, and took the bronze away to Babylon. They took the ash containers, the scoops, the knives, the incense boats, and all the bronze furnishings used in worship. The commander of the guard took the censers and the sprinkling bowls, everything that was make of gold and everything made of silver. As regard the two pillars, the one Sea and the wheeled stands...there was no reckoning the weight in bronze in all these objects."
- 2 Kings 25:1-3

During this time old cultic shrines at Beth-el and Hebron were also destroyed.

"Once again, and significantly, the Ark of the Covenant was not included - and nor was the gold that Solomon had used to line the Holy of Holies and to overlay the great cherubim that had stood within that sacred place."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"According to a list which now stands on our book of Jeremiah (52:28-30), 4,600 people were exiled in all, only 832 in 587. The lower figures are probably nearer the truth: Babylonian colonists were not settled in Jerusalem's surrounds, and the land was not emptied of former inhabitants."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

"The prophet Jeremiah...warned by an oracle [of the impending destruction of the Temple of Solomon], gave instructions for the tabernacle and the ark to go with him when he set out for the mountain which Moses had climbed to survey God's heritage. On his arrival Jeremiah found a cave dwelling, into which he brought the tabernacle, the Ark and the altar of incense, afterwards blocking up the entrance."
- 2 Maccabees 2:1, 4-5 [compiled somewhere between 100 B.C.E. and 70 C.E.]

"It was hidden in a cave on the mountain from which Moses viewed the Promised Land before his death, and the entrance was walled up. Afterwards, Jeremiah's companions were unable to retrace their route, so that the site of the cave was lost." [See also the Talmud, Yoma 52b, 53b]
- George Sassoon and Rodney Dale, The Manna Machine

"In the opinion of the scholars who produced the authoritative English translation of the Jerusalem Bible...Jeremiah's supposed expedition to hide the Ark was nothing more than an inspirational fable devised by the author of the second book of Maccabees as part of a deliberate attempt to re-awaken the interest of expatriate Jews in the national homeland."

"Outside of the Talmud, the Mishnah, the Apocalypse of Baruch, the second book of Maccabees, and various rather colorful legends, there is nothing of any substance in Jewish tradition concerning the whereabouts of the Ark of the Covenant."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

Ezekiel's Visions

"Ezekiel compared the Southern Kingdom (including Jerusalem and the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin) and the Northern Kingdom (including the other ten tribes, and called "Israel") to prostitutes because of their idol worship that led to their destruction (Ezekiel 23). However, when the Hebrews were brought back to Jerusalem, Ezekiel felt that all the twelve tribes of Israel would be united with a new Temple in Jersualem (this vision given in Ezekiel 40-48), with priests from the sons of Zadok of the tribe of Levi and with no foreigner able to enter the sanctuary of the Temple, a strict Hebrew belief, probably from Ezekiel being a priest. "
- "Bible Notes - Ezekiel"

Insofar as Ezekiel was concerned, "the Jews had disobeyed he divine laws and statues and profaned holy things including the Temple itself - the Temple where His glory dwelt in the Holy of Holies. The destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple represented a death, whilst the expected new City and the rebuilt Temple would be a resurrection, a rebirth with the stain of guilt removed."

In one vision, Ezekiel was transported to the inner gate of the Temple. There he "saw images of pagan worship to the gods Tammus, Baal and Adonis before being taken to a door of the court..."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

"Then said he [a fiery Spirit] to me, 'Son of man, dig in the wall'; and when I dug in the wall, lo, there was a door. And he said to me, 'Go in, and see the vile abominations that they are committing here.'  So I went in and saw; and there, portrayed upon the wall round about, were all kinds of creeping things, and loathsome beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel. And before them stood seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel, with Ja-azani'ah the son of Shaphan standing among them. Each had his censer in his hand, and the smoke of the cloud of incense went up.
Then he said to me, 'Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel are doing in the dark, every man in his room of pictures? For they say, "The LORD does not see us, the LORD has forsaken the land".'"
- Ezekiel 8:812

"Through it he sees mural paintings containing pictures of 'creeping things' and other mythological scenes, motifs which seem to point to syncretistic practices of Egyptian provenance. Seventy elders are engaged in secret mysteries with censers in their hands."
- Peake's Commentary on the Bible

"Ezekiel is outraged by the Egyptianesque images on the walls, naming the principal culprit as King Josiah, who in the middle of the previous century had had the Temple repaired and the walls redecorated."
- Christopher Knight & Robert Lomas, The Hiram Key: Pharaohs, Freemasons and the Discovery of the Secret Scrolls of Jesus

The Exiles Return

The Persians - 520 B.C.E.
"After Babylon and Assyria conquered the lands of Judah (Jahvists) and Israel (Adonists), all seemed lost. Then, Persia, the world's first Indo-European nation, conquered Babylon. They rebuilt many Temples of their subjects, including the famed rebuilding of the Temple at Jerusalem.

"It was at this time that the Perisan religion (Zarathustranism) with its doctrines of angels, demons, heaven, hell, Last Judgement, Resurrection and Messiah, under the Farsee (Pharisee?) priesthood, came to influence Judaism so strongly."
- Paul Trejo (pet@netcom.com)

"After the destruction of Jerusalem, there were further deportations, and only the poorest and least influential of its inhabitants were left to pick over the ruins. However, the Babylonian empire soon crumbled, and Judah fell into the comparatively enlightened hands of King Cyrus of Persia, who made funds available for the Temple to be rebuilt, and encouraged the Jews to return. However, neither effort was very successful. Nearly seventy years elapsed before the second Temple was completed, and the Jews of Babylon showed no great desire to return home. The pattern of Jewish life had been set; like many Jews today, the exiles found life outside the homeland more agreeable and profitable, and though they were prepared to make substantial donations towards rebuilding, they would not consider returning to live in the homeland. It was at this time that spoken Hebrew started to decline, to be replaced by Aramaic, otherwise called Chaldaic, the language of Babylon and of the Zohar."
- George Sassoon and Rodney Dale, The Manna Machine

"Throughout the years of Persian rule (c. 520-331 BC) Jews had their Temple, whose cult and priesthood mediated between the people and their God. According to the book of the law, this cult was acceptable in only one place..."

"Our book of Ezra (398 BC) describes how its hero came down to Jerusalem from the Persian court with a royal letter of support, some splendid gifts for its Temple and a copy of the law of Moses which he read to the assembled Jews. In this book we find for the first time an appeal to 'what is written' (Nehemiah 8:13-15, which was originally part of Ezra's book)."

"What exactly was this law of Moses which Ezra brought? Traditionally, it is thought to be the entire Pentateuch, or first five books of the Bible, from Genesis to Deuteronomy, more or less as we now know it. At some point, therefore, between c. 540 and 400 BC an unknown editor had amalgamated written traditions and worked older and respected tests into our single body of narrative and law."
- Robin Lane Fox, The Unauthorized Version

The Mysterious Disappearance of the Ark

In the Old Testament, the last reference to the existence of the Ark of the Covenant is during the reign of Hezekiah. After the Babylonian captivity, the Temple was rebuilt on the same foundation by Zerubbabel and the practice of animal sacrifices reinstituted, but the Bible is silent about the fate of the Ark itself.

The Seuclid Greeks - 168 B.C.E.
In the desecration of the Temple in 168 B.C.E., there is no mention of the Ark of the Covenant.  "Antiokhos [a successor of Alexander] was initially successful in occupying Jerusalem. He entered the inner sanctuary of the Temple, removed the sculpture of a male and female kherub [cherub] copulating, and replaced it with the 'desolation-inducing sacrilege', a statue of Olympian Zeus. The copulating kherubs he paraded through the streets of Jerusalem in a cage, sneering, 'You used to say that this nation was not serving idols. Now see what we found and what they were worshipping'."
- William Harwood, Mythologies Last Gods: Yahweh and Jesus

The Romans - 70 168 C.E.
"...When the Temple was sacked in A.D. 70 [by the Romans], the Ark, it is said, contained only stones and some badger skins dyed purple."
- David Conway, Ritual Magic

"There is no report that the Ark was carried away or destroyed or hidden. There is not even any comment such as "And then the Ark disappeared and we do not know what happened to it' or 'And no one knows where it is to this day'. The most important object in the world, in the biblical view, simply ceases to be in the story."
- Richard Eliot Friedman, Who Wrote the Bible?

A Hidden History in Ethiopia?

The Jewish Temple at Elephantine

"Are ye not as children of the Ethiopians unto me, O children of Israel? saith the Lord."
- Amos 9:7 [whose ministry lasted from 783 to 743 BC)

"By the eighth century BC, when Amos was prophesying, was it not conceivable that there could already have been a flow of Hebrew migrants southward though Egypt and into the highlands of Abyssinia?

"...The Kebra Nagast ('Glory of Kings')...dated from the thirteenth century AD and had originally been written in Ge'ez. It contained the earliest-surviving version on the story...about the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon, the birth of their son Menelik ['the son of the wise one'], and the eventual abduction of the Ark of the covenant from the First temple in Jerusalem."

According to an Ethiopian monk, who was reputedly the guardian of the Ark of the Covenant, "...It was Azarius [son of Zadok the High Priest of Israel], not Menelik, who stole the Ark of the Covenant from its place in the Holy of holies in the Temple....And it was thus that it was brought to Ethiopia, to the sacred city [Axum]...and here it has remained ever since."

Of all the many traditions that I had encountered in that country [Ethiopia], by far the purest and most convincing had indicated that the Ark of the Covenant had been brought first of all to Lake Tana, where it had been concealed on the island of Tana Kirkos...The relic had remained on the island for eight hundred years before it had finally been taken to Axum at the time of Ethiopia's conversion to Christianity. Since that conversion had occurred around AD 330, the implication of the strong folk memory preserved on Tana Kirkos was that the Ark must have arrived in Ethiopia in 470 BC or thereabouts - in other words about five hundred years after Solomon, Menelik and the Queen of Sheba."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"There is a land of sailing ships [or whirring wings - locusts?], a land beyond the rivers of Cush [Ethiopia] which sends its envoys by the Nile, journeying on the waters in vessels of reed. Go, swift messengers, go to a people tall and smooth-skinned [or bronzed], to a people dreaded near and far, a nation strong and proud, whose land is scoured [criss-crossed] by rivers."
- Isaiah 18:1-2 (whose lifespan almost certainly extended into the reign of Manasseh)

"The town of Aswan was a border town, built beside the granite cataract over which the Nile followed northwards into Egypt. For thousands of years, priests of the Temple of Khnum on the little island of Elephantine, had measure the annual rise of the river waters, to gauge the flood on which Pharaoh's yearly harvest was dependent. Beyond Aswan was Nubia with its wild tribes and desert nomads while to the north the land of Egypt lay under Persian domination." Documents found in the present century have given vivd glimpses into the life of the Jewish colony at Aswan..."
- John Romer, Testament

Elephantine was the site of a ruined Jewish Temple that, in "in the considered opinion of the scholars...must have been built by the year 650 BC....Archaeologists have concluded that its dimensions were ninety feet long by thirty feet wide. In old measurements this is, of course sixty cubits by twenty cubits. Interestingly, the Bible gives exactly the same measurements for Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem.....The Elephantine Temple was roofed with cedarwood; so was Solomon's."

"Animal sacrifice was routinely practiced at the Elephantine Temple - including the all-important sacrifice of a lamb as the opening rite of Passover week. This highly significant since it indicates that the Jewish community must have migrated to Elephantine before the reforms of King Josiah (640-609 BC). Those reforms conclusively banned sacrifice at any location other than the Jerusalem Temple (a ban that was subsequently respected even by the exiles during the captivity in Babylon)."

"...The Elephantine Jews clearly thought that Yahweh resided physically in their temple: a number of papyri speak of him - in no uncertain terms - as 'dwelling' there. In ancient Israel (and during the wanderings in the wilderness) Yahweh was believed to reside wherever the Ark was; indeed this belief only really changed after the loss of the Ark had been recognized."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"Manasseh's reign was accompanied by much bloodshed and it may be surmised that priests as well as prophets opposed his paganisation. Some of the priests fled to Egypt, joined the Jewish garrison at Elephantine [mercenaries in the pay of the Egyptians], and there...erected the Temple."
- Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elephantine

"From beyond the rivers of Ethiopia my suppliants, even the daughter of my dispersed shall bring mine offering."
- Zephaniah 3:10 (written sometime between 640 and 622 BC)

"Raphael Hadane, [a Falasha priest] said that the Jewish Temple built by his forefathers 'at Aswan' had been exempted from a great destruction that had been inflicted upon Egyptian temples by a 'foreign king'. "In 525 BC a foreign king did invade Egypt and did indeed destroy many temples. His name was Cambyses and he was the ruler of the expansionist Persian Empire that had been founded by his father Cyrus the Great."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"When Cambyses came into Egypt he found this [Jewish] Temple built. they [the Persians] knocked down all the temples of the gods of Egypt, but not one did any damage to this Temple"
- Elephantine Papyri [Bezalel Porten, Archives from Elepantine]

"Defeating the Egyptians, he treated them cruelly, and defiled the temple of their god Ammon. Then he took into his heart to go south and attack 'the long-lived Ethiopians'."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

"His spies went to Ethiopia, under the pretense of carrying presents to the king, but in reality to take note of all they saw, and especially to observe whether there was really what is called 'The Table of the Sun' in Ethiopia..."
- Herodotus, History, Book III

Two centuries later, Alexander the Great conquered Egypt and went south to Karnak. "Alexander selected a small escort and a few companions for an expedition even farther south" where, according to the recorders of his adventures, he visited a queen called Candace who showed him the secret "of the wonderful cave where the gods congregate."

"In the 1820s European explorers penetrating southward, into the Sudan, reported the existence of ancient monuments (including sharp-angled pyramids) at a site on the Nile river called Meroe. A Royal Prussian expedition uncovered impressive archaeological remains during excavations in the years 1842-44. Between 1912 and 1914, others uncovered sacred sites; the hieroglyphic inscriptions indicated one of them was called the Sun Temple - perhaps the very place where the spies of Cambyses observed the 'Table of the Sun'. Further excavations in this century the piecing together of archaeological finds, and the continued decipherment of the inscriptions, have established that there indeed existed in that land a Nubian kingdom in the first millennium BC; it was the biblical Land of Kush."  "The hieroglyphic inscriptions revealed, that at the very beginning of the Nubian kingdom, it was ruled by a wise and benevolent queen. Her name was Candace."
- Zecharia Sitchin, The Stairway to Heaven

Hebrew Migrants Into Abyssinia?

"The Persians remained in power in Egypt until very close to the end of the fifth century BC. During this period the Jews on Elephantine co-operated closely with them. It was after their protection had been effectively removed that the Jewish Temple on that island was finally destroyed."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"...Unlike the returning exiles at Jerusalem, the Jews of Aswan mixed freely with their neighbors. They happily married outside their faith, though they kept distinctively Jewish names and recognized David's City as the spiritual center of their faith. But they were not intimidated by Jerusalem and dared to petition the High Priest, asking for permission to rebuild their local temple of Jehovah at Aswan which had been burned down in a riot, when the priests of Khnum discovered the Jews sacrificing a ram which was Khnum's sacred animal. It is clear, too, that this was a full-blown temple and not just a simple meeting-house. The letter-writer understood very well the scandal that his request would cause to the orthodox in Jerusalem, for whom there could be but one Temple. So, in his letter, he concedes that worshippers at Aswan will no longer sacrifice animals upon its temple altar."

"The destroyed Aswan temple had been a substantial building of stone, with bronze doors and fittings of silver and gold....Biblical histories of Israel relate that there had been several temples of Jehovah outside Jerusalem in more ancient times, just as both archaeology and the Old Testament testify that there were also many pagan shrines in Israel and even in Jerusalem. Two hundred years after the request from Elephantine, a son of a Jerusalem High Priest opened another temple of Jehovah in the land of Egypt!"
- John Romer, Testament

"Hadane also reported that his people especially venerated the island of Tana Kirkos [Ethiopia] - the same island to which I was told the Ark had been brought in the fifth century BC. Moreover, Memhir Fisseha, the Christian priest whom I interviewed on that island, told me that the Ark had been kept there 'inside a tent' for eight hundred years before being taken to Axum."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"The Falashas know nothing of either the Babylonian or the Jerusalem Talmud, which were composed during and after the time of the captivity. They also do not observe the Feasts of PUrim and the Dedication of the Temple [Hanukkah], which...are still solemnly kept by the Jews of our time."
- Martin Flad, The Falashas of Abyssinia (1855)

"One of the proofs of the antiquity of Judaism in Ethiopia is the extremely archaic character of Falasha religion, in which animal sacrifice of precisely the kind carried out at Elephantine plays a crucial role. This adds weight to the hypothesis that the Falashas are the 'cultural descendants' of Jewish migrant from Elephantine and therefore provides strong support for the thesis that the Ark of the Covenant may have been brought to Ethiopia from that island."
"In its heyday the Jewish Temple on Elephantine had its own well established priesthood. In the vowel-less language of the papyri these priests are referred to as KHN...Falasha priests are also called Kahen."

"One of the names given to the Jewish Temple on Elephantine was MSGD. It meant 'place of prostration'. To this day the Falashas in Ethiopia have no synagogues; neither do they have a temple; they do, however, call their simple houses of worship Mesgid."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

The Christian Era in Ethiopia

"Christianity was introduced into Abyssinia 331 years after the birth of Christ by Abuna Salama whose former name was Frumentos or Frumentius. As that time the Ethiopian kings reigned over Axum. Before the Christian religion was known in Ethiopia half the inhabitants were Jews, who observed the Law; the other half were worshippers of Sando, the dragon."
- A History and Genealogy of the Ancient Kings

"The kingdom of the Jews shall be made an end of and the Kingdom of Christ shall be constituted...Thus hath God made of the King of Ethiopia more glory and grace and majesty than for all the other kings of the earth because of the greatness of Zion, the Ark of the Law of God."
- Kebra Nagast

"James Bruce...was a member of the Canongate Kilwinning No. 2 lodge of Edinburgh, known to be one of the oldest in Scotland, with side-orders and mystical teachings entrenched in Judaeo-Christian myth and ritual."
- Andrew Collins, From the Ashes of Angels - The Forbidden Legacy of a Fallen Race (1996) p. 12

James Bruce of Kinnaird "began to learn Ge'ez, the classical language of Ethiopia, as early as 1759." He went to Ethiopia, "he said, risking 'numberless dangers and sufferings, the least of which would have overwhelmed me but for the continual goodness and protection of Providence', in order to discover the source of the Nile. Lest any should be in any doubt that this was indeed his ambition he enshrined it conspicuously in the full title of the immense book that he later wrote: Travels to Discover the Source of the Nile in the Years 1768, 1769, 1770, 1771, 1772 and 1773."

"The mystery is this: long before he set out for Ethiopia, James Bruce knew that the Blue Nile's source had already been visited and thoroughly explored by two other Europeans: Pedro Paez and Jeronomo Lobo (both of whom were Portuguese priests who had lived in Ethiopia in the 1600s before the Fasilidas ban [that any Portuguese seeking entry into Ethiopia be beheaded] was put into effect."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"In it [the first church of Saint Mary of Zion is] supposed to be preserved the Ark of the Covenant...which Menelik...is said, in their fabulous legends, to have stolen from his father Solomon on his return to Ethiopia...Some ancient copy of the Old Testament, I do believe, was deposited here...but whatever this might be, it was destroyed...by Gragn [leader of the invading Muslim forces in 1535], though pretended falsely to subsist there still. This I had from the King himself."
- James Bruce, Travels vol. III

"...A battle fought on the shores of Lake Tana on 10 February 1543...after fifteen years of unparalleled destruction and violence, ended the Muslim attempt to subdue the Christian empire of Ethiopia....The cultural damage - in terms of burnt manuscripts, icons and paintings, razed churches and looted treasures -was to cast a shadow over the civilization of the highlands for centuries to come.

"The greatest treasure of all, however, was saved: moved out of Axum by the priests only days before that city was burnt in 1535, the Ark had been taken to one of the many island-monasteries on Lake Tana. there it was kept in safety until long after Gragn's death. Then, in the mid 1600's, Emperor Fasilidas (described by Bruce as 'the greatest king that ever sat upon the Abyssinian throne') built a new cathedral of Saint Mary of Zion over the gutted ruins of the old - and there, with due ceremony, the sacred relic was at last re-installed in all its former glory."

Bruce visted Axum on the 18th and 19th of January 1770. "...On precisely those days he would have witnessed the celebration of Timkat, the most important festival of the Ethiopian Orthodox church."

According to the historian Belai Bedai in Addis Ababa, "the real reason he came was to steal our treasures, our cultural treasures. He took many precious manuscripts back to Europe. The book of Enoch, for example. Also from the imperial repository at Gondar he carried off an ancient copy of the Kebra Nagast."
- Graham Hancock, The Sign and the Seal

"While most scholars have blasted the book [Graham Hancock's The Sign and the Seal], Ephraim Isaac is more forgiving with statements like 'Indeed his lack of the knowledge of the languages and his narrow understanding of the scholarly debate have led him to make hasty, albeit interesting, judgements. Ironically, however, it is his lack of the necessary scholarly tools that makes Hancock an original thinker!'"
- John Watton

Greek

The Eleusinian Mysteries 

"The Eleusinian Mysteries, held annually in honor of Demeter and Persephone, were the most sacred and revered of all the ritual celebrations of ancient Greece. They were instituted in the city of Eleusis, some twenty-two kilometers west of Athens, possibly as far back as the early Mycenaean period, and continued for almost two thousand years. Large crowds of worshippers from all over Greece (and later, from throughout the Roman empire) would gather to make the holy pilgrimage between the two cities and participate in the secret rites, generally regarded as the high point of Greek religion."
- Edward A. Beach, "The Eleusinian Mysteries"

Demeter, the goddess of corn and fertility, was seduced by a mortal called Iasion. Infuriated, Zeus killed Iasion with a thunderbolt and made love to Demeter himself. The result of this union was a daughter, Persephone.  Hades, "god of the Underworld, asked Zeus for Persephone as his wife. Zeus agreed, but, thinking that Demeter would not accept the match as she would lose her daughter forever to the Underworld, assisted Hades in Persephone's abduction. He asked Gaia to send up many lovely flowers near where Persephone dwelt, whilst she was picking them with her friends, Hades came up from the Underworld in a chariot and took the poor girl back with him. Demeter searched the world for many days and nights in the guise of a mortal. At every town she visited, she told men the secrets of the harvest...Demeter threatened famine to the earth unless her daughter was returned; but Persephone had eaten several pomegranate seeds which meant that she would have to stay in Hades for one-third of the year, during which period Demeter refused to allow the crops to grow. Festivals were held for the return of Persephone every spring. At Eleusis, Demeter leant her winged chariot, drawn by dragons, to the youth Triptolemus; he was to use it every year to scatter seed over the earth."
- David Bellingham, An Introduction to Greek Mythology

"The myths and rites of Eleusis have their counterpart in the religions of certain tropical cultures whose structure is agricultural and matriarchal."
"At Eleusis, as in the Orphic-Dionysiac ceremonies, as in the Greco-Oriental mysteries of the Hellenistic period, the mystes submits himself to initiation in order to transcend the human condition and to obtain a higher, superhuman mode of being. the initiatory rites reactualize an origin myth, which relates the adventures, death, and resurrection of a divinity."

"None of these initiatory cults can be regarded as a creation of the Greek mind. Their roots go deep into prehistory, Cretan, Asiatic, and Thracian traditions were taken over, enriched, and incorporated into a new religious horizon. It was through Athens that Eleusis became a Pan Hellenic religious center; but the mysteries of Demeter and Kore had been celebrated at Eleusis for centuries. The Eleusinian initiation descends directly from an agricultural ritual centered around the death and resurrection of a divinity controlling the fertility of the fields."
- Mircea Eliade, Rites and Symbols of Initiation

The cult of Demeter and Kore at Eleusis "dates back to the second millennium BC; traces of a small temple-house of that date have been found which would fit the myth well. When Eleusis came under the power of Athens, there was expansion of the buildings, and by the time of the dictator Pisistratus in the sixth century BC it was becoming a pan-hellenic cult. The great Hall of the Mysteries, with its forty-two columns, belongs to the following century, and in Roman times the buildings on the site were greatly expanded and enriched.

"The cult was entrusted hereditarily to two families, who provided the chief officials - the Hierophant, or chief priest, and his assistant; the priestess of Demeter and other priestesses; the Torchbearer; the Herald; and the Altar-priest."
- John Ferguson, An Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Mysticism and the Mystery Religions

"The rites of Eleusis overshadowed the civilization of that time, absorbing other smaller schools, and influencing the development of democracy, culture and the arts.
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

"In the month of Anthesterion (February) the lesser mysteries were conducted near Athens, at Agrai by the Ilissos River, as something of a preparation for the greater mysteries celebrated in Boedromion [September]."
- The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook, Marvin W. Meyer, Editor

"This sacred month was highly respected -- even if a war was on, it would be halted to allow its members to attend the mysteries. A truce was proclaimed, and fighting would cease, for example in Sparta, Thracia, and the Peloponesus, to allow participation. This also occured, incidentally, with the Olympic games.
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

The ceremonies involved "ritual washing in the sacred rivers...enlivened by much joking and laughter. This was followed by several days of sacrifices at minor sanctuaries."
- David Maybury-Lewis, Millennium

"The great processions gathered on the Acropolis, and made their way on foot to the sacred temples in Eleusis."
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

The Iacchos procession occurred on Boedromion 19. Initiates robed in white and bearing torches "marched along the sacred Way from Athens to Eleusis, singing, dancing, and carrying the 'sacred things' [hiera] of the goddesses back to the Telesterion (great hall of initation) in Eleusis."
- The Ancient Mysteries: A Sourcebook, Marvin W. Meyer, Editor

Along with the sacred cult objects, the initiates bore "a statue of the boy-god Iacchos. The latter deity, who personified the shouts of exultation that the participants would periodically emit, was identified at least as far back as the days of Sophokles with Dionysos (cf. Antigone, vv. 1115 ff.)."
- Edward A. Beach, "The Eleusinian Mysteries"

CHORUS
"Forward, now to the goddess's sacred circle-dance to the grove that's in blossom and play on the way for we belong to the company of the elect, and I shall go where the girls go and I shall go with the women who keep the nightlong rite of the goddess and carry their sacred torch.
Let us go where the roses grow and fields are in flower, in the way that is ours alone, playing our blessed play which the prosperous Fates today ordain for our playing.  On us alone the sun shines here and the happy daylight, for we are Initiates, we treat honorably all strangers who are here and our own people."
- Aristophanes, The Frogs

"After a long walk, the doors of the Telestrion (the outer temple) were reached. They passed through, and the doors closed behind them."
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

"Only those who spoke Greek and had shed no blood (or had subsequently been purified) were eligible to participate in the rituals at Eleusis. Each new initiate, known as a 'mystes', would receive preliminary instructions and guidance from an experienced sponsor, or 'mystagogos', who was often from one of the leading families of Eleusis. A mystes who returned a second time to Eleusis for induction into the highest levels of esoteric knowledge was known as an epoptes."
- Edward A. Beach, "The Eleusinian Mysteries"

"If they then proved worthy of further advancement, they were taken to a more secluded smaller temple, the Anaktoron (holy of holies), which is where the sacred rite itself was performed in the greatest secrecy."
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

"...The initiates gathered in a great hall, consumed a sacred drink, and witnessed the reenactment of a sacred drama concerning the goddess Demeter, her daughter Persephone, and Hades, the god of the underworld. The festival drew on ideas of fertility in agriculture - what is 'underground is the source of 'wealth; the grain is cut and dies but yields seed and grows again - to symbolize the journey of the soul. In this way, the promise was fulfilled that the initiate souls find that death 'is not only not an evil, but a good thing'."
- David Maybury-Lewis, Millennium

"At the heart of the Eleusinian sanctuary was a cave, called the Plutonion, and an omphalos stone that was said to bring together the energies of the underworld and the regions known to mortal men and women. Beginning in the sixth century BC, the Eleusinian mysteries flourished for nearly a thousand years. And the omphalos at Eleusis came to embody for the Greeks their most profound feeling for the earth as the source of all fertility and wonder."
- Earth Energies

"What happened in the sacred ceremony? Initiation into the mysteries, which brought about a spiritual birth, thus regenerating the whole individual. This was intended to reunite the personal self with the divine spirit of the kosmos as a whole. It was often accompanied by and aided the bringing about of enlightened comprehension. It also led to the development of intuitive insight and spiritual will-power as well as a deepening realization of oneness with all that exists, as well as a growing power to draw upon that oneness for the benefit of others."

"What actually were the revelations made is entirely unknown. The solemn vows, under the penalty of death, ensured that secrecy was maintained. Archaeologists and historians have speculated on these secrets, but no-one disclosed what occured and what was revealed in the Anaktoron. Some contemporary writers however have provided hints as to what was revealed."
- Geoffrey Hodson, "The Still-functioning Greater and Lesser Mysteries"

"As the festival wound down, the participants would dedicate special services in honor of the dead. Ritual libations would be poured on the ground, the consecrated liquid flowing in the eastward and westward directions. The initiates (probably exhausted at this point) would then return to Athens singly or in small groups. There does not appear to have been any organized procession. This was a time for reflection and meditation."
- Edward A. Beach, "The Eleusinian Mysteries"

Roman

Magic and Magicians in the Roman Empire

Jewish Magic 

"Widespread ancient reports of Jewish magic involving worship of angels and demons, as well as Yahweh, have now been confirmed by the recovery of Sefer ha-Razim, ('the Book of Secrets'), a Jewish magical text of late Roman times that gives directions for such worship, prescribing the prayers and sacrifices to be made to these minor powers."

"Listing in his preface the things to be learned from his book he [the author] put first, how to do mircles, second, general wisdom, and third:"
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) pp. 91, 164

"To know what is necessary for ascent to the heavens; to travel through all that is in the seven heavens, to behold all the signs of the zodiac, and...sun...moon and [stars]; to learn the names of the [angelic] guards of each firmament and their work and how they manage everything, and what are the names of their servants, and what libations are to be made to them, and what is the time [in which each of them] will consent to do whatever is asked by anyone who approaches them in purity."
- Sefer ha-Razim, ('The Book of Secrets')

"The idea of the seven heavens through which the soul ascends to its original home, either after death or in a state of ecstasy while the body is still alive, is certainly very old. In an obscure and somewhat distorted form it is already to be found in old apocrypha such as the Fourth Book of Ezra or the Ascension of Isaiah, which is based on a Jewish text. In the same way, the ancient Talmudic account of the seven heavens, their names and their contents, although apparently purely cosmological, surely presupposes an ascent of the soul to the throne in the seventh heaven. Such descriptions of the seven heavens, plus a list of the names of their archons, have also come down to us from the school of the Merkabah mystics in the post-Mishnaic period. It is precisely here that we still find an entirely esoteric doctrine. Thus for example in the 'Visions of Ezekiel', which have recently become known,' Ezekiel sees the seven heavens with their seven Merkabahs reflected in the waters of the Chebar river. This form of speculation about seven Merkabahs corresponding to the seven heavens is still innocent of any mention of Hekhaloth, or chambers, of the Merkabah. Possibly both conceptions were known to different groups or schools of the same period. In any event, the second variant gradually became the dominant one."
- Gershom G. Scholem, Major Trends in Jewish Mysticism (1941/1961) p. 54

Descriptions of heavenly ascent can be found in the apocryphal Book of Enoch and alluded to in DDS fragment 11 of DDS 4Q491. In addition a number of instances of the use of magic are reported in the Talmud. The reference in Sanhedrin 67a is particularly pertinent.

Goetes

"Through him [the demon Eros] all divination is made possible, and the science of the priests and of the specialists in sacrifices and initiations and spells, and all prophecy and goetia."
- Plato Symposium (202e)

"Here goetia (what goetes ['magicians'] do...seems to have been a sort of Greek shamanism, a form of mourning for the dead in which the goetes became ecstatic and were thought to accompany the dead on their journey to the underworld."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) p. 92

In classical times the scope of goetia came to include "accounts of the underworld, practice as mediums, necromancy, charms, curses, and therefore, by extension, any deceitful persuasion.. By New Testament times we find Josephus describing as goetia men who do or promise to do miracles - divide the Jordan, make the walls of Jerusalem fall down, overpower the Romans, and give the people 'salvation and rest from troubles.' Here Josephus' use of goetia is abusive. The word had lower class connotations and was widely used of political orators and the like to mean approximately 'spellbinder,' or just plain 'fraud'."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) p 93

Similar accusations were leveled against Jesus. Celsus charged that the teachings of Jesus and his followers were dualistic (similar to Zoroastrian doctrine of the magis).

"...Making some sort of opponent to God and calling this 'devil' and, in Hebrew, 'Satan'...so that when the greatest God wants to help men in some way, he has this being who works against him and he is not able [to carry out his plan]. Likewise the Son of God is defeated by the devil and, by him, make to suffer, and teaches us to be contemptuous of the sufferings that the devil inflicts. [Moreover,] he [Jesus] foretells that Satan himself, appearing in the same way [as Jesus], will perform great and marvelous works [miracles] and claim for himself the glory due to God. But we should not be deceived by these [miracles] nor desire to turn away to Satan, but should believe in him [Jesus] alone. These are obviously the teachings of a man who is a goes, a trickster trying to discredit in advance his rival claimants and rival beggars."

Celsus "immediately puts them [stories of Jesus' miracles] on a level with the works of the goetes on the grounds that they too promise marvelous things, and with the tricks done by those who have learned from Egyptians, who sell their revered teachings in the middle of the market for a few obols, and drive demons out of people and blow away diseases and call up spirits of [long dead] heroes and produce appearances of expensive dinners, [complete with] tables and pastry and nonexistent entrees, and make objects not really alive move as if alive and seem to be so, as far as appearance goes. And he says, 'Then, since these fellows do these things, will you ask us to think them sons of God? Should it not rather be said that these are the doings of scoundrels possessed of evil demons."
- Origen, Contra Celsus

In the early Roman empire, the title "magus" "might mean anything from a genuine Median priest or potentate to a fellow who peddled amulets or poisons to superstitious or jilted serving girls. In general however the term was pretentious. A man's enemies would probably call his a goes ['magician'], though they might refer to his practices as mageia, but there was no fixed rule."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) p. 98

Divine Man

"And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well."
- Pseudo Mark 16:17-18

"Nevertheless, the friends of a higher class practitioner would be apt to claim that he was not a magus, but rather, a 'divine man.' The 'divine man' was a god or demon in disguise, moving about the word in an apparently human body. He could do all the beneficent things a magus could, and he could also curse effectively - though of course he would curse only the wicked. He did his miracles by his indwelling divine power and therefore did not need rituals or spells."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) p. 98

"Unlike magicians he did his miracles without sacrifices, prayers, or spells - by the power of his own divine nature."
- PhilostratusLife of Apollonius IV.38 end

"The magical papyri describe a number of rites by which one can obtain a spirit as a constant companion. A magician who has such a spirit at his service can also dispense with rites and spells; he need only give his orders and they will be obeyed. Moreover, there were some magical rites that were supposed to deify the magician, either by joining him with some god in a permanent and perfect union (as Paul claimed to be joined with Jesus), or by changing the form, nature, or power of his soul so as to make it divine. A magician who had been so defied would thereafter be a divine man and would perform miracles by his own power, not by a spirit's."

"In common usage the lines between goes, magus, and divine man shifted according to the sympathies of the speaker. The same is true for the distinction between true and false prophets and the Greek translations that mights be chosen for ba'al 'ob [the master of a 'divining spirit]."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) pp. 99, 106

"We would have thought him [Jesus] a magus, as you [Sossianus Hierocles, a high imperial official who attacked Christianity around 304] now think and as the Jews taught in his lifetime, had not all the prophets with one spirit predicted that he was to do these very miracles. Therefore, his marvelous deeds and works do no more to make us think him a god than does that very cross...because it to was prophesied at the same time. Not therefore from his own testimony - for who can be believed if he speaks about himself - but from the testimony of the prophets...has he won credence for his divinity, a testimony that...can never be given to Apollonius or to Apuleius or to any of the magi."
- Lactantius, Div. Inst

To charges that they practiced magic "the defenders of Apollonius and Jesus made similar replies. They asserted that their heroes were truly divine, and to support these assertions they tried to distinguish their deities form magicians. Magicians used animal sacrifices, strange materials, and elaborate spells often containing barbarous words and the names of demons. They were out for money and were commonly cheats, their miracles usually illusory, commonly trivial, and sometimes harmful. They had no moral teaching, were often themselves conspicuously immoral, and could not offer men a say to salvation. In contrast therefore the traditions about Apollonius and Jesus minimize the ritual aspect of their miracles, represent them as indifferent or hostile to money, emphasize the reality, importance, and beneficence of their cures, emphasize their moral teachings, and represent them as bringing salvation."
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician: Charlatan or Son of God? (1978) pp. 121-122

Modern

Hubbard and Black Magick: The Adeptus Exemptus 

"Like surrealism, occultism tries to break the domination of rational philosophy and logic, stressed by Descartes. Occultism is based on the belief in a higher reality of certain forms of association through the cabbala, faith in the power of dream- and trance-images, and in the stream of words uncensored by the intellect."
- P. R. Koenig, "Ecstatic Creation of Culture"

"Hubbard had experienced a peculiar hallucination in 1938, while under nitrous oxide during a dental operation. He believed that he had died during the operation and while dead been shown a great wealth of knowledge."
- Tony McClelland, "The Total Freedom Trap"

According to Forrest Ackerman, Hubbard's former literary agent, Hubbard's vision appeared when he "died" on an operating table during the war.

"Basically what he told me was that after he died he rose in spirit form and looked back on the body he had formerly inhabited. Over yonder he saw a fantastic great gate, elaborately carved like something you'd see in Baghdad or ancient China. As he wafted towards it, the gate opened and just beyond he could see a kind of intellectual smorgasbord on which was outlined everything that had ever puzzled the mind of man. All the questions that had concerned philosophers through the ages - When did the world begin? Was there a God? Whither goest we? - were there answered. All this information came flooding into him and while he was absorbing it, there was a sort of flustering in the air and he felt something like a long umbilical cord pulling him back. He was saying 'No, no, not yet!', but he was pulled back anyway. After the gates had closed he realized he had re-entered his body."
"According to Ron, he jumped off the operating table, ran to his Quonset hut, got two reams of paper and a gallon of scalding black coffee and for the next 48 hours, at a blinking rate, he wrote a work called Excalibur, or The Dark Sword"

Hubbard "said that as he shopped the manuscript around, the people who read it either went insane or committed suicide. The last time he showed it to a publisher, he was sitting in an office waiting for a reader to give his opinion. The reader walked into the office, tossed the manuscript on the desk and then threw himself out of the window."

"He said it was in a bank vault and it was going to stay there. I think he was quite sincere. He seemed like a man who had seen too many people go crazy or commit suicide, who had enough on his conscience already. I never did get to see the manuscript or show it to any publisher. In fact, I never encountered anyone who said they had seen it."
- Forrest Ackerman

Art Burks, a fellow writer, did see the manuscript, but in 1938.

"He told me it was going to revolutionize everything: the world, people's attitudes to one another. He thought it would have a greater impact upon people than the Bible."
- Art Burks

"Burk's recollection of the manuscript was that it was about seventy thousand words long and began with a fable about a king who gathered all his wise men together and commanded them to bring him all the wisdom of the world in five hundred books. He then told them to go away and condense the information into one hundred books. When they had done that, he wanted the wisdom reduced into one book and finally one word. That word was 'survive'."
- Russell Miller, Bare-Faced Messiah

Yes, There Was a Book Called "Excalibur" by L. Ron Hubbard

Arthur Burks recalls many fascinating details in the unpublished novel

"Hubbard had clear connections to the occult. Even in the first publication of Dianetics in 'Astounding Science Fiction' [May 1950 p. 66], Hubbard in explaining how he did his 'research' into what the mind was doing, says he used 'automatic writing, speaking and clairvoyance'."
- Jeff Jacobsen, "The Hubbard is Bare"

"Scientology bears substantial resemblance to much other contemporary trance channeled material."
- Dissertation Abstracts, 1954, volume 14, page 390

"Hubbard's intense curiosity about the mind's power led him into a friendship in 1946 [actually August 1945] with rocket fuel scientist John Whiteside Parsons. Parsons was a protege of British satanist Aleister Crowley and leader of a black-magic group modeled after Crowley's infamous occult lodge in England.
- "LRH, the story of L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology", St. Petersburg Times, June 24, 1990

"Parsons and Hubbard lived in an aging mansion on South Orange Grove Avenue in Pasadena, Calif. The estate was home to an odd mix of Bohemian artists, writers, scientists and occultists. A small domed temple supported by six stone columns stood in the back yard.

"Hubbard met his second wife, Sara Northrup, at the mansion. Although she was Parsons' lover at the time, Hubbard was undeterred. He married Northrup before divorcing his first wife."
- "LRH, the story of L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology", St. Petersburg Times, June 24, 1990

"Although he [Hubbard] has no formal training in Magick, he has an extraordinary amount of experience and understanding in the field. From some of his experiences I deduce that he is in direct contact with some higher intelligence, possibly his Guardian Angel ... He is the most Thelemic person I have ever met, and is in complete accord with our own principles ... I think I have made a great gain, and as Betty [Sara Northrup] and I are the best of friends there is little loss. I cared for her rather deeply, but I have no desire to control her emotions, and I can, I hope, control my own. I need a magical partner. I have many experiments in mind..."
- Parsons in a letter to Crowley (late 1945)

"Long before the 1960s counterculture, some residents of the estate smoked marijuana and embraced a philosophy of promiscuous, ritualistic sex."
- - "LRH, the story of L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology", St. Petersburg Times, June 24, 1990

Aleister Crowley had sought to bring into being an Anti-Christ:

A "living being in form resembling man, and possessing those qualities of man which distinguish him from beasts, namely intellect and power of speech, but neither begotten in the manner of human generation, nor inhabited by a human soul."
- Aleister Crowley, The Book of the Law

"The core of this Working [by Parsons] consisted of the utilisation of the Enochian Tablet of Air, or rather a specific angle of it. This was to be the focus of VIII* sexual magick, with the purpose of giving substance to the elemental summons. Parsons continued with this for eleven days, evoking twice daily. He noted various psychic phenomena during this period, but felt discouraged by the apparent failure of the Operation. However, success followed several days later."
- Michael Staley, "The Babalon Working"

"The feeling of tension and unease continued for four days. Then on January 18 [1946] at sunset, whilst the Scribe and I were on the Mojave Desert, the feeling of tension suddenly stopped. I turned to him and said 'it is done', in absolute certainty that the Operation was accomplished. I returned home, and found a young woman [Marjorie Cameron] answering the requirements waiting for me. She is describable as an air of fire type with bronze red hair, fiery and subtle, determined and obstinate, sincere and perverse, with extraordinary personality, talent and intelligence. During the period of January 19 to February 27 I invoked the Goddess BABALON [a particular aspect of the Egyptian goddess Nuit] with the aid of magical partner (Ron Hubbard), as was proper to one of my grade."
- Parsons in a letter to Crowley (late 1945)

Reportedly the words of Babalon, consisting of 77 short verses, communicated to Parsons by unknown means in the Mohave desert at the end of February, "Liber 49 contains instructions for the earthing of this Babalon current in the form of an avatar, daughter or manifestation of Babalon, who was to appear amongst us. It would seem that Parsons was expecting a full-blown incarnation, and not simply the inauguration of a force."
- Michael Staley, "The Babalon Working"

"With the assistance of his new friend [L. Ron Hubbard], he [Jack Parsons] intended to try and create a 'moonchild' - a magical child 'mightier than all the kings of the earth', whose birth had been prophesied in the Book of the Law more than forty years earlier."
- Russell Miller, Bare-Faced Messiah

"The Aeon of Horus is of the nature of a child. To perceive this, we must conceive of the nature of a child without the veil of sentimentality - beyond good and evil, perfectly gentle, perfectly ruthless, containing all possibilities within the limits of heredity, and highly susceptible to training and environment. But the nature of Horus is also the nature of force - blind, terrible, unlimited force."
- Aleister Crowley (unpublished paper)

"On March 1 and 2, 1946, I prepared the altar and equipment in accordance with the instructions in Liber 49. The Scribe, Ron Hubbard, had been away about a week, and knew nothing of my invocation of BABALON, which I had kept entirely secret. On the night of March 2 he returned, and described a vision he had had that evening, of a savage and beautiful woman riding naked on a great cat-like beast. He was impressed with the urgent necessity of giving me some message or communication. We prepared magically for this communication, constructing a temple at the altar with the analysis of the key word. He was robed in white, carrying a lamp; and I in black, hooded, with the cup and dagger. At his suggestion we played Rachmaninov's Isle of the Dead as background music, and set an automatic recorder to transcribe audible occurrences. At approximately 8 am he began to dictate, I transcribing directly as I received."
- Parsons in a letter to Crowley (late 1945)

On March 2, 1946, Hubbard, Parsons and Marjorie Cameron, the "scarlet women" engaged in sexual rites in the Ordo Templi Orientis lodge in South Orange California. Hubbard, as scribe, intoned:

"Make a box of blackness at ten o'clock. Smear the vessel which contains flame with thine own blood. Destroy at the altar a thing of value. Remain in perfect silence and heed the voice of our Lady. Speak not of this ritual or of her coming to any person..."Display thyself to Our Lady; dedicate thy organs to Her, dedicate thy heart to Her, dedicate thy mind to Her, dedicate thy soul to Her, for She shall absorb thee, and thou shalt become living flame before She incarnates..."
- Russell Miller, Bare-Faced Messiah

"The neighbors began protesting when the rituals called for a naked pregnant woman to jump nine times through fire in the yard."
- L. Sprague de Camp (science-fiction author who knew both Hubbard and Parsons)

"Apparently Parsons or Hubbard or somebody is producing a Moonchild. I get fairly frantic when I contemplate the idiocy of these louts."
- Aleister Crowley, in a letter to the head of the OTO in the U.S.

"After the Babalon Working had been concluded, all that Parsons could do was watch and wait. He had been told that the Operation had succeeded, that conception had occurred, and that in due course the avatar or Daughter of Babalon would come to him, bearing a secret sign that Parsons alone would recognise, and which would prove her authenticity. Hubbard, though, had rather more mundane considerations on his mind, and several weeks later he and Betty absconded with a vast amount of Parsons' money. This amounted to many thousands of dollars as an investment in Allied Enterprises, a fund set up by Parsons, Betty and Hubbard, and into which Parsons was pursuaded to sink most of his savings."
- Michael Staley, "The Babalon Working"

"About J.W.P. - all that I can say is that I am sorry - I feel sure that he had fine ideas, but he was led astray firstly by Smith [former head of the Agapé Lodge of the O.T.O. in California], then he was robbed of his last penny by a confidence man named Hubbard."
- Aleister Crowley, in a letter to Louis T. Culling (October 1946)

"Hubbard and Parsons finally had a falling out over a sailboat sales venture [Allied Enterprises] that ended in a court dispute between the two. In later years, Hubbard tried to distance himself from his embarrassing association with Parsons, who was founder of a government rocket project at the California Institute of Technology that later evolved into the famed Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Parsons died in 1952 when a chemical explosion ripped through his garage lab."

"Hubbard insisted that he had been working undercover for Naval Intelligence to break up black magic in America and to investigate links between the occultists and prominent scientists at the Parsons' mansion. Hubbard said the mission was so successful that the house was razed and the black-magic group was dispersed. But Parsons' widow, Cameron, disputed Hubbard's account in a brief interview with the Los Angeles Times. She said the two men 'liked each other very much' and 'felt they were ushering in a force that was going to change things'."
- "LRH, the story of L. Ron Hubbard and the Church of Scientology", St. Petersburg Times, June 24, 1990

"Hubbard continued the practice of Magick after leaving Parsons....The 'Affirmations' are voluminous. The introduction alone runs to thirty pages. They are in Ron Hubbard's own hand. Only a tiny portion was read into the court record [during the Armstrong case], and the originals were held under court seal. In the 'Affirmations' Hubbard hypnotized himself to believe that all of humanity and all discarnate beings were bound to him in slavery. Mary Sue Hubbard's attorney claimed these statements were part of Hubbard's 'research'.

"Also under court seal was a document with the tantalizing title 'the Blood Ritual'. The title was Hubbard's own. This document was apparently so sensitive that no part of it was read into the record. The Scientology lawyer asserted that the deity invoked in 'The Blood Ritual' is an Egyptian god of Love.

Parson had mentioned Hubbard's guardian angel, 'The Empress'. Nibs Hubbard says his father also called his guardian angel Hathor, or Hathoor. Hathor is an Egyptian goddess, the daughter and mother of the great sun god Amon-Ra, the principal Egyptian deity. She was depicted as a winged and spotted cow feeding humanity; a goddess of Love and Beauty. But she had a second aspect, not always mentioned in texts on Egyptian mythology, that of the 'avenging lioness', Sekmet, a destructive force. One authority has called her 'the destroyer of man'. This is the 'God of Love' to whom 'The Blood Ritual' ceremony was dedicated. Since doing my research I have seen a copy of 'The Blood Ritual', and it is indeed addressed to Hathor. Nuit, Re, Mammon and Osiris are also invoked. The ceremony consisted of Ron and his then wife mingling their blood to become one."

"Arthur Burks has left an account of a meeting with Hubbard before the Second War, where Hubbard said that his guardian angel, a 'smiling woman', protected him when he was flying gliders. One early Dianeticist asked Hubbard how he had managed to write Dianetics: the Modern Science of Mental Health in three weeks. Hubbard said it was produced through automatic writing, dictated by an entity called the 'Empress'. In Crowley's Tarot, the Empress card represents, among other things, debauchery, and Crowley also associated the card with Hathor.

"To Crowley, Babalon was a manifestation of the Hindu goddess Shakti, who in one of her aspects is also called the 'destroyer of man'. It seems that to Hubbard, Babalon, Hathor, and the Empress were synonymous, and he was trying to conjure his 'Guardian Angel' in the form of a servile homunculus to he could control the 'destroyer of man'.

"There was also a correspondence between Diana and Isis to Crowley, and the Empress card represented not only Hathor, but Isis, in Crowley's system. Diana is the patroness of witchcraft. Hubbard later called one of his daughters Diana, and the name of the first Sea Org yacht was changed from Enchanter to Diana."
- Jon Atack, A Piece of Blue Sky

Use of Magick in Scientology

"The whole and sole object of all true magickal training is to become free from every kind of limitation."
- Aleister Crowley, Magick in Theory and Practice

"Our whole activity tends to make an individual completely independent of any limitation."
- L. Ron Hubbard, Philadelphia Doctorate Course lecture (December, 1952)

"Conventional religions, with their colorful mythologies analyzed in terms of the underlying philosophical principles, represent simply the primitive longing of man to feel 'at one' with the Universal harmony he perceives about him. 'White' magic, as advocated by primitive pagan and modern institutional religions, offers devotees the illusion of 're-inclusion' in the Universal scheme of things through various ritualistic devotions and superstitions.

"The Black Magician, on the other hand, rejects both the desirability of union with the Universe and any self-deceptive antics designed to create such an illusion. He has considered the existence of the individual psyche - the 'core you' of your conscious intelligence - and has taken satisfaction from its existence as something unlike anything else in the Universe. The Black Magician desires this psyche to live, to experience, and to continue. He does not wish to die - or to lose his consciousness and identity in a larger, Universal consciousness [assuming that such exists]. He wants to be."
-- John Youril, "The Temple of Set FAQ"

Hubbard defines operating thetan, a spiritual being freed by Scientology practices as "an individual who could *operate* totally independently of his body whether he had one or didn't have one. He's now himself, he's not dependent on the universe around him."
- Scientology Technical Dictionary

"In the Philadelphia Doctorate Course lectures taped in 1952, Hubbard discusses occult magic of the middle ages, and recommends a current book - 'it's fascinating work in itself, and that's work written by Aleister Crowley, the late Aleister Crowley, my very good friend.' The book recommended was The Master Therion, (published in London in 1929) later re-released as Magick in Theory and Practise. L. Ron Hubbard, Jr. asserts that during the time when the Philadelphia course was given his father would read Crowley's works 'in preparation for the next day's lecture...'
- Jeff Jacobsen, "The Hubbard is Bare"

"...In these runes are mysteries that no Beast shall divine. Let him not seek to try: But one cometh after him who shall discover the key to it all."
- Aleister Crowley, The Book of the Law

"According to Ron Jr., his father considered himself to be the one 'who came after'; that he was Crowley's successor; that he had taken on the mantle of the 'Great Beast'. He told him that Scientology actually began on December the 1st, 1947. This was the day Aleister Crowley died."
- Brent Corydon, Messiah or Madman

"There are interesting similarities between Crowley's writings and the teachings of Hubbard. Dianetics' Time Track, in which every incident in a person's life is chronologically recorded in full in the mind, is quite similar to Crowley's Magical Memory. The Magical Memory is developed over time until ''memories of childhood reawaken which were previously forgotten, and memories of previous incarnations are recalled as well'. Hubbard gives examples in the Philadelphia Doctorate Course of several people remembering lives earlier on earth, some up to a million years ago. The similarity between the Magical Memory and Time Track, then, is that they both can recall every past incident in a person's life, they both can recall incidents from past lives, and they both must be developed by certain techniques in order to make use of them. Both Hubbard and Crowley consider it important to have the person recall his or her birth."
- Jeff Jacobsen, "The Hubbard is Bare"

"Having allowed the mind to return for some hundred times to the hour of birth, it should be encouraged to endeavour to penetrate beyond that period."
- Aleister Crowley, Magick

"After twenty runs through birth, the patient experienced a recession of all somatics and 'unconsciousness' and aberrative content." "Thus there was no inhibition about looking earlier than birth for what Dianetics had begun to call basic-basic."
- L Ron Hubbard, Dianetics

"Both Hubbard and Crowley are avowedly anti-psychiatry."
- Jeff Jacobsen, "The Hubbard is Bare"

"Official psychoanalysis is therefore committed to upholding a fraud...Psychoanalysts have misinterpreted life, and announced the absurdity that every human being is essentially an anti-social, criminal, and insane animal."
- Aleister Crowley, Magick

"Hubbard considered that psychiatry controlled most of society and was struggling to create their own 1984 world. Hubbard and Crowley both posit the ability of the person to leave his or her body at times. Crowley states that the way to learn to leave your body is to mock up a body like your own in front of your physical body. Eventually you will learn to leave your physical body with your 'astral body' and travel and view at will without physical restrictions. Hubbard teaches the same, and his method of "exteriorization" is to tell the person to 'have preclear mock up own body', which will send the person outside his body."

"Both Crowley and Hubbard use an equilateral triangle pointing up in a circle as one of their group's symbols. Both use Volume 0 instead of Volume 1 to begin enumerating their works. One could go on for quite some time listing the similarities between Crowley's and Hubbard's theories and writings, but for more the reader is encouraged to look for him or herself.

"In Crowley's Organization are several grade levels. To reach the Grade of Adeptus Exemptus 'The Adept must prepare and publish a thesis setting forth His knowledge of the Universe, and his proposals for its welfare and progress. He will thus be known as the leader of a school of thought.' [Magick] It is apparent that Hubbard has fulfilled this requirement."
- Jeff Jacobsen, "The Hubbard is Bare"

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