It is thought that, for a very long time, possibly all of prehistory, certainly in the earliest conceptions we can discover, humanity opposed “history” by all possible means. This is Eliade’s view of the rituals and rites that have come down from the deepest antiquity. That is to say, they were a form of “sympathetic magic” designed to “symbolically” erase time and the accumulated “Terror of History.”
Many interpreters of these ancient beliefs think that this was a longing of early man to “return to the innocence” of the animals – the lost paradise of animality. This presupposes a primitive desire to “have no memory” and to be content without interiorizing his experiences and thus to have no consciousness other than being “within Nature;” that is, within the womb, or Eden. This is, as it happens, the thrust of most “New Age Philosopy” as promoted by the “cult of Egypt” and Rene Schwaller de Lubicz.
But, as Eliade points out, perhaps this “thirst” for meaning also reflects mankind’s thirst for BEing after the fashion of the archetypal beings whose gestures he constantly repeats. And, in my opinion, it is not just a “thirst for being” as the gods, but an enactment of an actual primordial condition. Mankind remembered his former estate.
In point of fact, the myths of nearly every people and culture around the globe allude to a very distant epoch when men knew neither death nor toil nor suffering and there was a bountiful supply of food and all other necessities available for the taking.
“In illo tempore, the gods descended to earth and mingled with men; for their part, men could easily mount to heaven. As the result of a ritual fault, communications between heaven and earth were interrupted and the gods withdrew to the highest heavens. Since then, men must work for their food and are no longer immortal.” [Eliade, 1954]
In ancient times, there were no acts which were not sacred and a reflection of this Absolute and Divine Reality. However, through a long process of desacralization, those things which were originally most holy have become profane, and vice versa. How can we explain this inversion?
As far back as we can go with archaeological records; i.e. “hard science,” we find that the worship of the Great Celestial Goddess was the act of veneration of the Universe and all within it as the living body of the Goddess-Mother-Creatrix. This goddess was symbolized by the double wavy lines of water – both the cosmic sea of potential/activation, as well as the life giving moisture that emanated from the body of the Goddess and all women as her representatives on earth; the oceans and seas, rivers and springs and wells.
She was the sky Goddess and the Earth was her womb and all upon it were her children. The “Son/Sun-King” died every year and was reborn in the passing of the seasons. Rites and rituals were enacted to insure the rebirth of the “Son” through the “womb of the Earth,” the generative organ of the Cosmic Mother. There was a purity and innocence… a pastoral, Arcadian simplicity and symmetry to life. Men and women were equals in importance as the “Twin offspring” of the Goddess impregnated by the self-existent-within-the-Goddess male potential of the emanation of light.
Women were honored and cherished in their three manifestations: the virgin-future-mother; the mother-nourisher; and the crone-mother-of-wisdom. Men were partners and protectors of women, thereby protectors of their own being since all were born and nursed by women. The male energy served the female because the female served the male; there was cycling energy, synergy, symmetry and balance.
The wavy lines of water, the Cosmic Sea of the Mother, were, at some point, transmogrified or inverted into the symbol of the serpent; the woman became associated with the serpent instead of the Stars; and everything went downhill from there. This event is described in Genesis 3:19 where Adam is told by his Father god Jehovah: “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread till you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken; you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”
Here, the “dust” or the Earth, is denigrated and reviled as worthless in the same passage as woman, herself, is denigrated and reviled as the temptress. But, in the pre-existing Goddess religions, the earth out of which all life has been born is NOT dust, but alive – as the womb of the Goddess herself! And, judging by the massive evidence collected by Marija Gimbutas, this was the most ancient and worldwide order of thought, antecedent to and underlying all other myths, predating the Indo-European male-dominated pantheons by many thousands of years!
“The main theme of the Goddess symbolism is the mystery of birth and death and the renewal of life, not only human, but all life on earth and indeed, in the whole cosmos. Symbols and images cluster around the parthenogenetic Goddess and her basic functions as Giver of Life, Wielder of Death, and, not less importantly, as Regeneratrix, and around the Earth Mother, the Fertility Goddess young and old, rising and dying with plant life. She was the single source of all life and who took her energy from the springs and wells, from the sun, moon, and moist earth. This symbolic system represents cyclical, not linear time. In art this is manifested by the signs of dynamic motion: whirling and twisting spirals…” [Gimbutas, 1989]
At some point, an “inversion,” occurred and the goddess, or source of moisture and all life, was identified with the serpent-as-tempter and became the wicked Temptress herself. There is some difficulty in untangling the threads of the currently known symbolic systems of which there are now two: one reflecting a matriarchal-serpent culture, and the other an androcratic-militaristic-serpent culture. The man and woman, who were formerly united as the original “Twins of Creation,” and who, in their union could “control” the serpent, became opposed to each other; unbalanced; antagonists, not partners. The benevolent “Son-King,” the leader of the flock, was no longer sustained and supported by the female energy, channeled from the Goddess through the “Tree,” in the body of the Goddess’ representative on Earth, Woman, but instead became the male “killer” of the serpent AND controller/ oppressor of the Goddess, who became the exemplification of temptation and occasional consort of the serpent!
Who was this serpent? What are the clues that point to his appearance on the scene? Where? When?
We already have a few clues: The clues of Babel and the introduction of agriculture. The overthrow of the Shepherd King, the Arcadian Ideal, was followed by “ownership” of the earth, and forcing of the land to yield more and more; accompanied at the same time by the development of the “signs of civilization” and the loss of former trans-dimensional abilities and knowledge.
Zeus was initially represented as a serpent: the impregnating male energy contained within the Goddess prior to parthenogenesis. But, somewhere along the way the myths were changed and Zeus became a serpent killer and secures the reign of the patriarchal gods by defeating Typhon, the serpent-monster who is the child of the earth goddess, Gaia. We can see from the Assyrian version in the previous section, that there is corruption already present, designed, apparently, to vilify the female energy.
Another inversion occurred in the context of the Iron Age Hebrews. And here we find a hint of the ultimate reason for the series of inversions: the introduction of the concept of LINEAR TIME, a supreme weapon to use against the mind of man in terms of control and domination!
Original Sin. The “ritual fault” that led to the Fall from Eden. What was it?
The Talmud transmits a curious teaching: all men, except for some exceptional beings, die from the counsel of the snake.
What does this mean?
It seems that a period of “symmetry” is suggested by the ancient Goddess myths and this symmetry was lost in some way.
Adam and Eve were told at the time of the Fall that, “by the sweat of your brow will you eat…” which suggests the point at which agriculture was introduced, or at least that agriculture was symbolic of this “altered” and asymmetrical state of mankind. This does not means that we can know how many cycles of time have passed since the original “Fall,” but that we CAN possibly place one of the “tracks” we have predicted at a particular “time,” the time of the neolithic revolution: i.e. 5,000 years ago.
The myth that follows on the heels of the Fall of Adam and Eve is the story of Cain and Abel and the “first murder.”
“Abel kept flocks and Cain worked the soil…”
For the shepherd, all the Earth is sacred as he roams with his flocks. The agriculturalist, on the other hand, “settles” and “owns” the land and cultivates it and forces it to yield to him, often without returning what he has taken. To the shepherd, the Goddess is all love and all giving; to the agriculturalist, the Goddess must be “owned” and forced to yield.
Seemingly, the next inversion came with the downsizing of the Celestial Corporation – the Monotheistic Covenant. Now, with monotheism, we have a new player… or, more precisely, a new set of rules in which events, in and of themselves, take on reality as either the “grace” or “punishment” of god related to one or another human or group of humans – and somebody is keeping score! No longer is man an extension of the Divine, playing out the great cosmic drama on the stage of Earth; NOW, he is an orphan cast adrift in the cosmos, guilty and damned for his very existence, and with only ONE hope of salvation: choose the RIGHT god (among many)!
Monotheism is a myth that establishes a particular identity as an antithesis – against another – actually, just about ALL Others! The ultimate club of elitists!
“Here collective identity is explicitly narrated as an invention, a radical break with nature and with the past. A transcendent deity breaks into history with the demand that the people he constitutes obey the laws he institutes, and first and foremost among those laws is the requirement that they pledge allegiance to him and to him alone.” [Schwartz, 1997]
“You are my own people, my very own.” And, somehow, this takes on heavy sexual connotations because any divergence from the path is labeled as “whoring” after other gods.
“This people is to be the exclusive possession of the deity, and none other, and they are to have exclusive desire for this deity, and none other. The Other against whom Israel’s identity is forges is abhorred, abject, impure and in the ‘Old Testament,’ vast numbers of them are obliterated, while in the ‘New Testament,’ vast numbers of them are colonized or converted.” [Schwartz, 1997]
We will return to a discussion of the covenant and the identities of the participants, but for the moment, the issue is the fact that, at this point in time, time became linear.
And, for the most part, our modern world is predicated upon linear time.
The god of the Jews is a personality who purportedly ceaselessly intervenes in history and who reveals his will through events. Historical facts thus acquired a religious value in the fact that they were specific situations between man and god, and history became the epiphany of god. This conception was continued and magnified by Christianity. We can see the seeds of the original myths here, but we can also see the major distortions. The idea of the misfortunes of history being related to the sins of the king has been lost, and the blame has been spread upon all mankind who must pay and pay again, the price for their existence with no respite but to appease a vengeful and jealous god who is no longer a loving father to his son and representative, born via the Divinity of the Goddess. No longer are men innocent children with an earthly father and representative who is able to quell the Terror of History through his divinely indwelt person; mankind, individually and collectively, are damned and excluded except they follow the dictates of a bloodthirsty and devouring being who demands endless sacrifices from each and every person, most especially the sacrifice of freedom, equality and a sense of partnership with the world and the rest of humanity.
In monotheism, every event is definitely situated in time – a given time and no other – and is not reversible. It is a historical event with weight and value in and of itself. And that weight is upon the shoulders of mankind, individually and collectively.
The messianic king role was, essentially, eliminated entirely from early Judaism, and there was no hope but endless slavery to Jehovah, exemplified by repeated bloodbaths of sacrifice. Jehovah, himself, became their king, ruling through the priests and “judges.” He was clearly a poor substitute because he was unable to effectively fill the role of the divine king, the true consort of the Goddess.
As the apparent hopelessness of this situation overshadowed the minds of the early Jews, they begged again for a king. “In those days there was no king in Israel.” (Judges 18:1) “In those days when there was no king in Israel…” (Judges 19:1) “In the days when the judges ruled there was a famine in the land…” (Ruth 1:1) “When Samuel was old, he made his sons judges over Israel. …All the elders of Israel assembled and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, Behold, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways; so appoint us a king to rule over us like all the other nations. But it displeased Samuel when they said, Give us a king to govern us… And the Lord said to Samuel, Hearken to the voice of the people in all they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not be king over them… Only solemnly warn them, and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.” (I Samuel 1: 1, 5, 7)
Jehovah then manages to put on the throne the least likely candidate, and the one most likely to make a very bad king, and clearly not of the bloodline that was fit to sit upon the throne. (He was a Benjamite, a seriously ostracized group!) And, indeed, Saul is a very bad king and gets replaced by David, of the tribe of Judah.
Without going into the convoluted speculations about the “Davidic” bloodline, suffice it to say that it was only after the exposure to the Babylonian ideas that a messianic hope arose again; the hope of the restoration of the divine kingship on earth, and this was idealized in David, who was the closest thing to a messianic/divine king the Israelites had ever experienced since their famous ancestor had made a covenant with this usurper god, Jehovah.
In the offshoot of Judaism, Christianity, the Messianic hope, the victory over the forces of darkness, is projected indefinitely into the future and will only happen once in terms of linear time. Further, there is only ONE who can accomplish this conquest of darkness, and man’s only hope is to give up his will to this one who has been crucified and resurrected to symbolize his verity, even if he has really done nothing to change the state of the world in REAL time. When the Messiah comes again (never mind that he was supposed to have already been here and global conditions did not improve), the world will be saved once and for all, and history will cease to exist – and most of humanity along with it, not to mention a “third of the angels,” and so on.
And this idea began to take hold through violence and exclusion, serving as the basis for the philosophy of history that Christianity, from St. Augustine on, has labored to construct.
In case you didn’t notice what just happened here, let me make it a little more clear. What this has done is give value to the “future” as an END to everything. That’s it; no more. Further, the arbiter of that future is ONE god, who, I might add, is his own surety because he has helpfully announced at the beginning that he IS the ONE god; and this one god has a select group of servants who will be preserved to the exclusion of all others in some way if they obey him, and destroyed if they disobey him. But, of course, it is “free will choice” as to whether to believe this or not. It doesn’t sound like a choice; it sounds like an ultimatum!
Nevertheless, in both of these conceptions of time, cyclical and linear, the “Golden Age” is recoverable. In the former, it occurs endlessly, infinitely and eternally, in the latter, only once. The final catastrophe will put an end to history and restore man to eternity and beatitude of non-being. But, hold on! The final catastrophe that will put an end to history will at the same time be a JUDGMENT of history. All will render an account of what they have done and only a chosen few will know this beatitude and eternity. And remember, the dreadful guilt and weight of all history has been equally distributed on the shoulders of the common man, i.e. the “Sin of Eve.”
Some Eastern religions still hang onto the cyclical conception from which man CAN, by an act of true Free Will, wrest himself from the endless cycle by ESCAPING FROM TIME. The only possibility of escaping from time, of breaking the iron circle of existence, is to abolish the human condition and win “Nirvana.” In this conception, the numberless aeons of repeating the cycles have a function; when one contemplates the panorama of the Terror of History, the reality in which he lives, this forces him to realize that he must begin this same transitory existence over and over again, and to endure the same endless sufferings over and over again, millions upon millions of times; this results in intensifying his will to escape, impelling him to transcend his condition.
Thus, the idea of transcending time – of time being the means by which man grows and develops Will sufficient to “graduate” to some other state of being – is at the root of the cyclical theme of time.
However, within the framework of the three dominant religions of the day: Islam, Judaism, and Christianity – there is the linear concept of a limiting of the cosmos to some specific number of millennia at which point it will all grind to a screeching halt and the saved will go to “Nirvana/Heaven” and the damned will fry eternally. If that’s the best plan their “god” has, he isn’t much of a god!
For Christianity, time is real because it has a meaning – the REDEMPTION at the END.
“A straight line traces the course of humanity from the initial Fall to final redemption. And the meaning of this history is unique, because the Incarnation is a unique fact. Consequently, the destiny of each one of us, are both likewise played out once, once for all, in a concrete and irreplaceable time which is that of history and life.” [Puech, Henri-Charles,” Gnosis and Time,” quoted by Eliade]
The linear conception of time is intimately connected to the idea of evolution. The events of history are a continuing unfoldment of new and more perfect manifestations of both man, man’s works, and thus the spirit of God.
“But despite the reaction of the orthodox Fathers, the theories of cycles and of astral influence on human destiny and historical events were accepted, at least in part, by other Fathers [of the church] and ecclesiastical writers, such as Clement of Alexandria, Minucius Felix, Arnobius, and Theodoret. The conflict between these two fundamental conceptions of time and history continued into the seventeenth century.
“We must remind the reader that, at the height of the Middle Ages, cyclical and astral theories begin to dominate historiological and eschatological speculation. Already popular in the twelfth century, they undergo systematic elaboration in the next, especially after the appearance of translations from Arabic writers. …Albertus Magnus, St. Thomas, Roger Bacon, Dante, and many others believe[d] that the cycles and periodicities of the world’s history are governed by the influence of the stars, whether this influence obeys the will of God and is his instrument in history or whether it is regarded as a force immanent in the cosmos.” [Eliade, 1954]
In short, the time of the creation of the Grail legends was a time when eschatological conceptions were combined with and complemented by the theory of the cyclic return of events. These ideas dominated down to the seventeenth century. But, it was also during this time that the linear progress of history began to assert itself through the Crusades and Inquisition.
“From the seventeenth century on, linearism and the progressivistic conception of history assert themselves more and more, inaugurating faith in an infinite progress, a faith already proclaimed by Leibniz… popularized in the nineteenth century by the triumph of the ideas of the evolutionists.” [Eliade, 1954]
Of course, this led to the inevitable casting off of any non-material significance, as in the works of Karl Marx.
The chief problem with the linear conception of time is: how do we redeem man from all the endless dramas of the Terror of History? How do we find meaning in the oppressions, the endless sufferings, humiliations, massacres, genocide and cataclysmic destruction that has been the lot of many illud tempus – from the beginning of Time?
Karl Marx had an answer: all of the suffering is not arbitrary; it is designed to lead man to a definite and coherent end – a final elimination of the Terror of History via a material salvation which constituted an “age of gold,” or Heaven on Earth of Marxism.
This, of course, justified the exacerbation of evil to hasten the final deliverance – an idea not unknown to Christianity as evidenced in the Crusades, Inquisition, and, frighteningly in the present day regression into fundamentalism in America.
The important point now is: how does free will enter in here?
It seems, on the surface, that man has affirmed his “autonomy” by rejecting concepts of periodicity and cycles and archetypes. The modern “historical man” or Christian, views archaic man’s view of history as endlessly repeating archetypal gestures as a symptom of a fear of movement and spontaneity – or having no free will or courage.
“On the other hand, the more modern and ‘mechanistic’ man becomes, the less able he is to ‘make’ history himself. As a ‘cog’ in a vast, mechanized society, history is made by an increasingly small number of men who not only prohibit the mass of their contemporaries from directly or indirectly intervening in the history they are making, but in addition have at their disposal means sufficient to force each individual to endure, for his own part, the consequences of this history, that is, to live immediately and continuously in dread of history. Modern man’s boasted freedom to make history is illusory for nearly the whole of the human race. At most, man is left free to choose between two positions:
(1) to oppose the history that is being made by the very small minority (and, in this case, he is free to choose between suicide and deportation); (2) to take refuge in a subhuman existence or flight.
“…Marxism and Fascism must lead to the establishment of two types of historical existence: that of the leader (the only really ‘free’ man) and that of the followers, who find, in the historical existence of the leader, not an archetype of their own existence, but the lawgiver of the gestures that are provisionally permitted to them.” [Eliade, 1954]
Thus, modern man in his linear time, is neither free nor a creator of history. And worse, he is trapped in this parameter with a prophesied END to it ALL looming on the horizon with all the guilt of endless millennia of human suffering on his shoulders!
The ancients, in their cyclical existence, WERE free. They were free to annul their history, to abolish time, to regenerate – even if only symbolically.
And, in the very most ancient times, perhaps they were free to do this literally. And, if not this time, another time! No eternal blame, no arbitrary guilt, no everlasting Hell fire and damnation.
In order to understand the transition of polytheism to monotheism, it is really important to understand the context in which this event developed. But, we are now talking about things that go very far into the remote past, complicated by the further problem that the “new” religion did a pretty effective job of destroying evidence and records that anything else ever existed, much less that it was VERY successful and long lived! Robin Lane Fox writes about the subject:
“Historians of the ancient world face two constant problems, a scarcity of evidence and the relation of its particular pieces to wider generalizations. …About many people in antiquity we know only what others of a different sex or class wrote and sometimes not even that. …Ancient history is not a static or finite subject: a lifetime ago, much that I discuss was not even available for study.” [Fox, 1986]
As previously noted, according to the most recent research, the very oldest form of religion that can be identified was the worship of the Mother Goddess by wandering “hunter gatherers.”
It was thought, for a very long time, that such cultures were very primitive and narrow, but it has now been discovered that this is not the case. New archaeological sites are being excavated at the present time (Jomon in Japan, for example) that show very advanced levels of art and culture among these “husbandmen” of the Earth. The discernible idea of the religion of these peoples is that of an infinite bounty of the Great Mother. They didn’t engage in agriculture because the idea of “owning land” may have been abhorrent to them. The idea of “forcing” the earth to yield, rather than accepting the natural abundance the Goddess provided was simply not a part of their philosophy. Their Goddess was a Star Being and she was worshipped in Temples that were laid out along Celestial Archetypes.
And, there is also something VERY mysterious about these early people – they seemed to have had “super powers.”
“…We concern ourselves at the moment only with the gigantic stone masonry which remains in almost all parts of the world. Certain characteristics of some of the stone work bespeak origin in a single, widespread civilization, highly developed in some ways, but not mechanical in the same sense as ours of today. We will presently limit ourselves to one phase only: the massive size and weight of the various monoliths. The manner and method of their carving is material for another report, but it can be confidently said that the First Civilization had simple and effective methods of working and moving stone which are unused today, and which were more effective than anything which we of the Second Civilization have developed.
“In many areas we find evidence of stone blocks of unbelievable weight being quarried, more or less casually moved considerable distances, then lifted into place. This common factor connects pre-Inca Peru with Easter Island in a startling and undeniable way, and seems to tie in [Europe] the Middle East, the Orient, Africa, and maybe Polynesia. Many investigators and thinkers have proposed methods for moving these quarried and dressed blocks. All of the proposals are based on applications of such simple present-day engineering equipment as block-and-tackle or sand ramps. The great pyramids, consisting of hundreds of thousands of huge stone blocks, are thought by some to have been erected by thousands of slaves toiling up long ramps of sand to bring these gigantic masses from the Nile. Flotation has been considered. No suggestions have been made which really fit all cases, and some of the submissions are so cumbersome and inadequate as to seem ridiculous.
“[…] One such example is that of Sacsahuaman Fortress, in the High Andes of Peru, above the ancient Inca, and pre-Inca city of Cuzco. There are several eras of civilization represented in the poorly understood archaeological remains at, and near, Cuzco. …The Incas were also using some structures which were inherited from their predecessors, and this has led to some confusions, because practically all other ruins in the neighborhood have been vaguely and uncertainly classified as ‘pre-Inca’ [some of which] were skillfully constructed before the mountains were raised to their present high level – certainly before glaciation.
“The massive work of Sacsahuaman seems to be intermediate between the extremely old and the more immediately pre-Inca, and may very well be the initial works of those people who were last in the area before the Incas, and whose works the Incas inherited and used.
“The Fortress (so-called by archaeologists, who admit no types of building other than religious, military, and occasionally residential) of Sacsahuaman is on a mountain top overlooking modern Cuzco. It is noteworthy as one of the earliest works showing the construction of walls by GRINDING AND FITTING THE STONES IN SITU.” (Empahsis, mine: LKJ) “These walls are also noted for the very large stones which make up the lower of three tiers, and it is these in which we are more interested.
“The stones making up the corners of the reentrant angles of this lower tier, appear to be a dark basalt; heavy, hard, and rugged. They are so large that they dwarf a man on horseback standing beside them. Some of them are about twelve feet square at the base, and eighteen to twenty feet high. They are estimated to weigh about two hundred tons each. Other stones in the same walls range from small ones of only a few hundred pounds, through continuous gradations up to the largest. All of them were crudely rough quarried, and were then GROUND INTO THEIR DESIGNATED NICHES IN THE STRUCTURE BY PUSHING THEM BACK AND FORTH, IN SITU, until they fitted so closely, completely and accurately that a knife blade cannot be inserted between them. This is a logical and practical shortcut to effective stone fitting which we have not equalled in modern engineering.
“(It is interesting to note in passing, however, that we use this method in what is probably our operation of highest accuracy and precision: lens and mirror grinding for astronomical telescopes. No substitute has been found for this system of grinding pieces of glass together to obtain perfect curvature, and there is no basic difference in the two operations.)
“However, there are some startling inferences in the size and mass of the stones. To place the largest of these corner stones in place, so that others could be worked to fit them, required tremendous force. It is unimaginable that sufficient hand labor and crude tackle could be massed around them so that they could be moved and handled.
“The intermediate sizes, some of them weighing ten, twenty, and forty tons, or more, had to be picked up, put approximately into place, and pushed back and forth until they ground themselves into their individually fitting contours. This was no mean chore. It is inferred that means of handling must have existed which made it easy, or at any rate possible, to swing these stones up and around, and to shove them to and fro, against terrific friction, while pinched between their adjacent neighbors. Such power would tax any modern machine or power plant and require an installation of generating equipment sufficient to run a city. It seems plainly obvious that some other source of power existed.
“It may be that this tremendous power was limited in its application to articles of stone texture only, but this is a little doubtful. Or, perhaps it was limited to nonmagnetic materials in general. Such a limitation would have side-tracked the development of a mechanized culture such as ours of this day, and would partly account for the strange fact that almost all relics of the profound past are non-metallic. It does seem possible that the usefulness of that power, whatever it was, may have been limited by its very nature and that it was never developed along industrial lines because of this limitation and even, perhaps, because of a basic difference in values. This writer cannot see his way to believing that such a power was electrical, magnetic, calorific, or strictly mechanical, else it would have led to industrial develoments leaving at least a few traces.” [Jessup, 1955]
These last remarks of Morris Jessup’s are, to me, the most interesting.
It is a fact that the Earth is literally blanketed with megaliths from some ancient civilization. Tens of thousands of them! There are variations in placement and style, but the thing they all have in common is the incredible sizes of them, and the antiquity of them.
One book on the subject says:
“Looming out of the mists from hillside, moor and forest glade, in a great arc around the coasts of Europe, from Sweden and the Shetland Islands in the north to Spain, Portugal and Malta in the south, stand the megaliths – great grey rocks, rough-hewn, streaked with age, often imposing, always mysterious. They range from single natural boulders to grandiose structures which would have demanded complex architectural planning and the labour of tens of thousands of men for centuries.
“There has never been a systematic census of these monuments, but it is estimated that there are at least 50,000 of them. Even that figure amounts to only a fraction of the total number erected, for countless megaliths have been destroyed by the forces of nature or by man.
“The known and lost monuments once formed an enormous blanket of stone extending over western Europe. today, often only the skeleton of the original can be seen. The bare grey stones were, in many cases, covered by great mounds of green turf and gleaming white quartz pebbles. Spread by their thousands along the coasts they must have been a dazzling and unparalleled sight.
“Unparalleled indeed in human history. For there has never been anything like this rage, almost mania, for megalith-building, except perhaps during the centuries after AD 1000 when much the same part of Europe was covered with what a monk of the time called a ‘white mantle of churches.’
“[…] The megaliths, then, were raised by some of the earliest Europeans. The reason that this simple fact took so long to be accepted was the peculiar inferiority complex which western Europeans had about their past. Their religion, their laws, their cultureal heritage, their very numerals, all come from the East. The inhabitants, before civilisation came flooding in from the Mediterranean, were illiterate; they kept no records, they built no cities. It was easy to assume that they were simply bands of howling half-naked savages who painted their bodies, put bear-grease on their hair and ate their cousins.” [Reader’s Digest, 1977]
The whys and wherefores of this “megalith mania” are still under debate. The fact is, you can’t date stones. Yes, you can date things found around them or near them, or under them, but you can’t date the stones.
The interesting thing is that the peoples who did erect them are still, in most circles, considered to be barbarians because they did not build cities, engage in agriculture, develop the wheel, or writing.
Yet, they did something that clearly cannot and was not done by “civilized” peoples who did all of those “civilized” things. They had some sort of “power” that we cannot replicate and do not understand. Yet, this very power may be at the root of the Grail Stories and the related texts of alchemical transformations which repeatedly connect a transformative power to a “stone.”
I would like to speculate here for a moment. The first thing that comes to my mind when I consider the problem of the megaliths is that of what I call “payoff.” That is, nobody who is human ever does anything without a “payoff,” or to put it more generally, for a reason.
What could be the reason for the stones? There were clearly a great deal more of them than would be necessary for simple “monumental” or “worship” purposes. They appear to be arranged like the inner workings of some vast machinery whose purpose is an enigma to us.
At the same time, could the overabundant presence of these megaliths have anything to do with the things that are observed to be “lacking” in these peoples, i.e. the “signs” of civilization, the wheel, agriculture, writing and cities?
Suppose the reason for the stones and the reason for the absence of “civilized standards” are identical?
It is a matter of observation that cities developed in agricultural societies as a central place to manufacture and exchange goods. Agriculture is required to feed stable and static populations. Wheels are needed to both transport people and goods in cities and from agricultural zones to cities and back. Writing is needed to keep records of transactions, as is demonstrated by the clear evidence of the earliest forms of writing… endless lists and tallys of grain and cattle. And, writing was used for another reason: to record and promulgate the exploits of certain gods and goddesses as well as keeping track of all the goods tithed to the temple and priesthood.
So, suppose none of this was needed?
Suppose a civilization existed that did not NEED cities, agriculture, wheels or writing? That is not to say that they did not produce goods en masse, nor that they did not produce food for large groups, or that they did not travel over vast distances or record their exploits.
But, suppose they did not do it in the way we would expect?
Suppose the STONES DID IT ALL!
What do I mean?
To explain, let me go in a slightly different direction for a moment: One of the things that seems to be almost ubiquitous with these “ancient groups” and their circles and mighty stone works and “star temples” and all that seems to be the fact that they all just “dissapear” with alarming regularity. How many times have you read: “What happened to _______ is unknown. The site was abandoned _________and there is no real explanation as to what happened or where they went.” (Fill in the blanks with your choice of groups and times.)
Then, such writers go to great lengths explaining all sorts of possible scenarios… plague, war, climate, whatever. (Almost never is global cataclysm proposed because that is too scary, and, besides, the structures are intact, for the most part). But, the single fact remains: the peoples associated with big piles of rocks or megalithic structures have a habit of disappearing. That’s an unavoidable observation.
Frank Joseph who has been studying some ancient sites in America which seem to bear a certain relation in terms of the resemblance of some of their circles with the more ancient sites, writes:
“What, then, was responsible for all the loosely connected ceremonial centers scattered from Wisconsin to Georgia [to Mexico, etc] winding down at the same time? The answer is simple and comprehensively correct: a calendar.
“One of the major elements in common among the various walled ceremonial centers was their concurrent function as astronomical observatories. […] Above all they worshipped time. They may have felt oppressed by it, or perhaps they strove to live in harmony with its cycles. In either case, their obvious attention to the movements of the heavens clearly defines an obsession with the regular passage of cycles in nature.
“Here, too, the mound builders compare closely with Tenochitlan’s own priest-kings, the Tlatoan, who were likewise self-conscious of time, which they envisioned as the figure of a ferocious sun god. In fact, the chief deity of the Aztecs, the solar Huitzlipochtli, was jointly known as ‘the Eagle with Arrows of Fire, the Lord of Time.’
“The people of Aztalan [the name of the Wisconsin ceremonial center as handed down orally by the local Native Americans] left their ceremonial enclosure, as did the inhabitants of the rest of the walled settlements throughout the Mississippi valley, because their sacred calendar ordered them to do so. Separated by great distances as they were, their alignment posts of sundial pyramids all told their observers the same thing at the same moment: it was time to go.” [Joseph, 1997]
Mr. Joseph is definitely onto something, I think, though it may not be precisely what he is thinking. It is fairly clear, though not precisely proven, that these circles were used as some sort of astronomical observatory. But, it is also clear that a simple accounting of time in order to know when to plant the grain, or when to have a ceremony for standard purposes, is all out of proportion to the “payoff” factor of the megaliths. Smaller and less difficult to build structures would serve the purposes of astronomical observations and ritual activity equally well. It seems as though the circles and other megalithic structures HAD to be built out of stone for a specific reason, that is, the stones had a function; they DID something!
And, yes, the builders DID disappear. Group after group of them. And that implies an even more interesting phenomenon: the manipulation of space/time. And, if that is the case, then it is clear why they did not need the accoutrements of so-called civilization.
The Stone Movers did not NEED any of the accoutrements of so-called “civilization” for the simple reason that the STONES DID EVERYTHING!
There has been some research regarding “recordings” in stones of buildings… of energy fields, earth grids and all that. Certain stones produce electricity under the right conditions… and if the stones were used to amplify mental energies… well, they would power not only transport (eliminating the need for the wheel), communication and recording of information (eliminating the need for writing), and perhaps could even “manifest” anything that was needed in terms of food and other goods (thereby eliminating the need for cities and agriculture).
Tied in to all of this is the ancient alchemical lore about the “philosopher’s stone,” (though I am not so naive as to think that this is the whole cheese in that regard, but it does make you think a bit…). The Holy Grail, the head of Bran the Blessed, and the Philosopher’s stone of the alchemists, are all connected to the idea of certain powers that have to do with the stopping or manipulating of time, a source of endless abundance (multiplying loaves and fishes), eternal life or the “elixir of life,” and so forth. And, most importantly, the idea of “cycles” and astronomical placements being necessary to the “work.”
And it is not entirely out of the question that IF such was the case, that these stones could have just simply “translated” the Stone Movers into another dimension at some point when astronomical alignments were right… the “Big Payoff of going home,” so to speak.
And maybe all their careful record keeping in such funny ways (the 19 year moon cycle, for example; remember the 19th day as a special day of rest of the Assyrians) had to do with the moments in space/time when certain activities were most easily accomplished? Maybe they weren’t a bunch of silly, superstitious savages hauling stones around and sweating like crazy just to dance around in the moonlight and discover when to plant the corn? And maybe this is the secret the Templars discovered and how they managed to “disappear?”
But, I am getting ahead of myself.
Cassiopaeans: All there is is lessons. This is one infinite school. There is no other reason for anything to exist. Even inanimate matter learns it is all an “Illusion.” Each individual possesses all of creation within their minds. Now, contemplate for a moment. Each soul is all powerful and can create or destroy all existence if you know how. You and us and all others are interconnected by our mutual possession of all there is. You may create alternative universes if you wish and dwell within. You are all a duplicate of the universe within which you dwell. Your mind represents all that exists. It is “fun” to see how much you can access.
Q: (L) It’s fun for who to see how much we can access?
A: All. Challenges are fun. Where do you think the limit of your mind is?
Q: (L) Where?
A: We asked you.
Q: (L) Well, I guess there is no limit.
A: If there is no limit, then what is the difference between your own mind and everything else?
Q: (L) Well, I guess there is no difference if all is ultimately one.
A: Right. And when two things each have absolutely no limits, they are precisely the same thing.
Apparently, when you learn, you progress to higher densities, and when you do that, you become free of the necessity of ordering. You are free of necessity, but you can still do it if you wish.
Q: (D) When 4th density beings communicate it’s telepathic, right?
Q: (D) Okay, since time doesn’t exist, how do you communicate about happenings? How do you communicate about events as one happens now, as opposed to later and the next thing happens, and the next thing happens… (J) How is it sequential?
A: Translate. That is how it is done. From 4th to 3rd. And vice versa.
Q: (L) So, in other words, it’s almost like making movies. In other words, if you’re a 4th density being, everything is more or less happening, excuse the term happening, everything is simultaneous, and if you wish to discuss or communicate or have any focus upon any particular aspect of this unified dimension, then what you do is you kind of extract it out, project it into 3rd density like a movie…
A: Close. But you will not understand fully until you get there.
So, the question is, at 3rd density, do we really DO anything? CAN we do anything?
Eliade, Mircea  The Myth of The Eternal Return, or Cosmos and History; New York; Bollingen Foundation
Fox, Robin Lane  Pagans and Christians, New York, Alfred A. Knopf
Jessup, Morris K.  The Case For The UFO, New York, Bantam Books
Joseph, Frank  The Lost Pyramids of Rock Lake, Minnesota, Galde Press
Schwartz, Regina  The Curse of Cain: The Violent Legacy of Monotheism; Chicago, University of Chicago Press