"All things are governed in the bosom of this triad." — Lydus: De Mensibus, 20.
"Thrice let the heaven be turned on its perpetual axis." — Ovid: Fasti iv.
"And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven oxen and seven rams." — Numbers xxiii. 1, 2.
"In seven days all creatures who have offended me shall be destroyed by a deluge, but thou shalt be secured in a vessel miraculously formed; take, therefore . . . and with seven holy men, your respective wives, and pairs of all animals, enter the ark without fear; then shalt thou know God face to face, and all thy questions shall be answered." — Bagavedgitta.
"And the Lord said, I will destroy man . . . from the face of the earth. . . . But with thee will I establish my covenant. . . . Come thou and all thy house into the ark. . . . For yet seven days and I will cause it to rain upon the earth." — Genesis vi., vii.
"The Tetraktys was not only principally honored because all symphonies are found to exist within it, but also because it appears to contain the nature of all things." — Theos of Smyrna: Mathem., p. 147.
Our task will have been ill-performed if the preceding chapters have not demonstrated that Judaism, earlier and later Gnosticism, Christianity, and even Christian Masonry, have all been erected upon identical cosmical myths, symbols, and allegories, whose full comprehension is possible only to those who have inherited the key from their inventors.
In the following pages we will endeavor to show how much these have been misinterpreted by the widely-different, yet intimately-related systems enumerated above, in fitting them to their individual needs. Thus not only will a benefit be conferred upon the student, but a long-deferred, and now much-needed act of justice will be done to those earlier generations whose genius has laid the whole human race under obligation. Let us begin by once more comparing the myths of the Bible with those of the sacred books of other nations, to see which is the original, which copies.
There are but two methods which, correctly explained, can help us to this result. They are — the Vedas, Brahmanical literature and the Jewish Kabala. The former has, in a most philosophical spirit, conceived these grandiose myths; the latter borrowing them from the Chaldeans and Persians, shaped them into a history of the Jewish nation, in which their spirit of philosophy was buried beyond the recognition of all but
the elect, and under a far more absurd form than the Aryan had given them. The Bible of the Christian Church is the latest receptacle of this scheme of disfigured allegories which have been erected into an edifice of superstition, such as never entered into the conceptions of those from whom the Church obtained her knowledge. The abstract fictions of antiquity, which for ages had filled the popular fancy with but flickering shadows and uncertain images, have in Christianity assumed the shapes of real personages, and become accomplished facts. Allegory, metamorphosed, becomes sacred history, and Pagan myth is taught to the people as a revealed narrative of God's intercourse with His chosen people.
"The myths," says Horace in his Ars Poetica, "have been invented by wise men to strengthen the laws and teach moral truths." While Horace endeavored to make clear the very spirit and essence of the ancient myths, Euhemerus pretended, on the contrary, that "myths were the legendary history of kings and heroes, transformed into gods by the admiration of the nations." It is the latter method which was inferentially followed by Christians when they agreed upon the acceptation of euhemerized patriarchs, and mistook them for men who had really lived.
But, in opposition to this pernicious theory, which has brought forth such bitter fruit, we have a long series of the greatest philosophers the world has produced: Plato, Epicharmus, Socrates, Empedocles, Plotinus, and Porphyry, Proclus, Damascenus, Origen, and even Aristotle. The latter plainly stated this verity, by saying that a tradition of the highest antiquity, transmitted to posterity under the form of various myths, teaches us that the first principles of nature may be considered as "gods," for the divine permeates all nature. All the rest, details and personages, were added later for the clearer comprehension of the vulgar, and but too often with the object of supporting laws invented in the common interest.
Fairy tales do not exclusively belong to nurseries; all mankind — except those few who in all ages have comprehended their hidden meaning and tried to open the eyes of the superstitious — have listened to such tales in one shape or the other and, after transforming them into sacred symbols, called the product Religion!
We will try to systematize our subject as much as the ever-recurring necessity to draw parallels between the conflicting opinions that have been based on the same myths will permit. We will begin by the book of Genesis, and seek for its hidden meaning in the Brahmanical traditions and the Chaldeo-Judaic Kabala.
The first Scripture lesson taught us in our infancy is that God created the world in six days, and rested on the seventh. Hence, a peculiar sol-
emnity is supposed to attach to the seventh day, and the Christians, adopting the rigid observances of the Jewish sabbath, have enforced it upon us with the substitution of the first, instead of the seventh day of the week.
All systems of religious mysticism are based on numerals. With Pythagoras, the Monas or unity, emanating the duad, and thus forming the trinity, and the quaternary or Arba-il (the mystic four), compose the number seven. The sacredness of numbers begins with the great First — the one, and ends only with the nought or zero — symbol of the infinite and boundless circle which represents the universe. All the intervening figures, in whatever combination, or however multiplied, represent philosophical ideas, from vague outlines down to a definitely-established scientific axiom, relating either to a moral or a physical fact in nature. They are a key to the ancient views on cosmogony, in its broad sense, including man and beings, and the evolution of the human race, spiritually as well as physically.
The number seven is the most sacred of all, and is, undoubtedly, of Hindu origin. Everything of importance was calculated by and fitted into this number by the Aryan philosophers — ideas as well as localities. Thus they have the
Sapta-Rishi, or seven sages, typifying the seven diluvian primitive races (post-diluvian as some say).
Sapta-Loka, the seven inferior and superior worlds, whence each of these Rishis proceeded, and whither he returned in glory before reaching the final bliss of Moksha.*
Sapta-Kula, or seven castes — the Brahmans assuming to represent the direct descendants of the highest of them.†
Then, again, the Sapta-Pura (seven holy cities); Sapta-Duipa (seven holy islands); Sapta-Samudra (the seven holy seas); Sapta-Parvata (the seven holy mountains); Sapta-Arania (the seven deserts); Sapta-Vruksha (the seven sacred trees); and so on.
In the Chaldeo-Babylonian incantation, this number reappears again as prominently as among the Hindus. The number is dual in its attributes, i.e., holy in one of its aspects it becomes nefast under other conditions. Thus the following incantation we find traced on the Assyrian tablets, now so correctly interpreted.
"The evening of evil omen, the region of the sky, which produces misfortune. . . .
"Message of pest.
"Deprecators of Nin-Ki-gal.
"The seven gods of the vast sky.
"The seven gods of the vast earth.
"The seven gods of blazing spheres.
"The seven gods of celestial legion.
"The seven gods maleficent.
"The seven phantoms — bad.
"The seven phantoms of maleficent flames. . . .
"Bad demon, bad alal, bad gigim, badtelal . . . bad god, bad maskim.
"Spirit of seven heavens remember . . . Spirit of seven earths remember . . . etc."
This number reappears likewise on almost every page of Genesis, and throughout the Mosaic books, and we find it conspicuous (see following chapter) in the Book of Job and the Oriental Kabala. If the Hebrew Semitics adopted it so readily, we must infer that it was not blindly, but with a thorough knowledge of its secret meaning; hence, that they must have adopted the doctrines of their "heathen" neighbors as well. It is but natural, therefore, that we should seek in heathen philosophy for the interpretation of this number, which again reappeared in Christianity with its seven sacraments, seven churches in Asia Minor, seven capital sins, seven virtues (four cardinal and three theological), etc.
Have the seven prismatic colors of the rainbow seen by Noah no other meaning than that of a covenant between God and man to refresh the memory of the former? To the kabalist, at least, they have a significance inseparable from the seven labors of magic, the seven upper spheres, the seven notes of the musical scale, the seven numerals of Pythagoras, the seven wonders of the world, the seven ages, and even the seven steps of the Masons, which lead to the Holy of Holies, after passing the flights of three and five.
Whence the identity then of these enigmatical, ever-recurring numerals that are found in every page of the Jewish Scriptures, as in every ola and sloka of Buddhistic and Brahmanical books? Whence these numerals that are the soul of the Pythagorean and Platonic thought, and that no unilluminated Orientalist nor biblical student has ever been able to fathom?
And yet they have a key ready in their hand, did they but know how to use it. Nowhere is the mystical value of human language and its effects on human action so perfectly understood as in India, nor any better explained than by the authors of the oldest Brahmanas. Ancient as their epoch is now found to be, they only try to express, in a more concrete form, the abstract metaphysical speculations of their own ancestors.
Such is the respect of the Brahmans for the sacrificial mysteries, that they hold that the world itself sprang into creation as a consequence of a "sacrificial word" pronounced by the First Cause. This word is the "Ineffable name" of the kabalists, fully discussed in the last chapter.
The secret of the Vedas, "Sacred Knowledge" though they may be, is impenetrable without the help of the Brahmanas. Properly speaking, the Vedas (which are written in verse and comprised in four books) constitute that portion called the Mantra, or magical prayer, and the Brahmanas (which are in prose) contain their key. While the Mantra part is alone holy, the Brahmana portion contains all the theological exegesis, and the speculations and explanations of the sacerdotal. Our Orientalists, we repeat, will make no substantial progress toward a comprehension of Vedic literature until they place a proper valuation upon works now despised by them; as, for instance, the Aitareya and Kaushitaki Brahmanas, which belong to the Rig-Veda.
Zoroaster was called a Manthran, or speaker of Mantras, and, according to Haug, one of the earliest names for the Sacred Scriptures of the Parsis was Manthra-spenta. The power and significance of the Brahman who acts as the Hotri-priest at the Soma-Sacrifice, consists in his possession and full knowledge of the uses of the sacred word or speech — Vach. The latter is personified in Sara-isvati, the wife of Brahma, who is the goddess of the sacred or "Secret Knowledge." She is usually depicted as riding upon a peacock with its tail all spread. The eyes upon the feathers of the bird's tail, symbolize the sleepless eyes that see all things. To one who has the ambition of becoming an adept of the "Secret doctrines," they are a reminder that he must have the hundred eyes of Argus to see and comprehend all things.
And this is why we say that it is not possible to solve fully the deep problems underlying the Brahmanical and Buddhistic sacred books without having a perfect comprehension of the esoteric meaning of the Pythagorean numerals. The greatest power of this Vach, or Sacred Speech, is developed according to the form which is given to the Mantra by the officiating Hotri, and this form consists wholly in the numbers and syllables of the sacred metre. If pronounced slowly and in a certain rhythm, one effect is produced; if quickly and with another rhythm, there is a different result. "Each metre," says Haug, "is the invisible master of
something visible in this world; it is, as it were, its exponent and ideal. This great significance of the metrical speech is derived from the number of syllables of which it consists, for each thing has (just as in the Pythagorean system) a certain numerical proportion. All these things, metres (chhandas), stomas, and prishthas, are liable to be as eternal and divine as the words themselves they contain. The earliest Hindu divines did not only believe in a primitive revelation of the words of the sacred texts, but even in that of the various forms. These forms, along with their contents, the everlasting Veda-words, are symbols expressive of things of the invisible world, and in several respects comparable to the Platonic ideas."
This testimony from an unwilling witness shows again the identity between the ancient religions as to their secret doctrine. The Gayatri metre, for example, consists of thrice eight syllables, and is considered the most sacred of metres. It is the metre of Agni, the fire-god, and becomes at times the emblem of Brahma himself, the chief creator, and "fashioner of man" in his own image. Now Pythagoras says that "The number eight, or the Octad, is the first cube, that is to say, squared in all senses, as a die, proceeding from its base two, or even number; so is man four-square or perfect." Of course few, except the Pythagoreans and kabalists, can fully comprehend this idea; but the illustration will assist in pointing out the close kinship of the numerals with the Vedic Mantras. The chief problems of every theology lie concealed beneath this imagery of fire and the varying rhythm of its flames. The burning bush of the Bible, the Zoroastrian and other sacred fires, Plato's universal soul, and the Rosicrucian doctrines of both soul and body of man being evolved out of fire, the reasoning and immortal element which permeates all things, and which, according to Herakleitus, Hippocrates, and Parmenides, is God, have all the same meaning.
Each metre in the Brahmanas corresponds to a number, and as shown by Haug, as it stands in the sacred volumes, is a prototype of some visible form on earth, and its effects are either good or evil. The "sacred speech" can save, but it can kill as well; its many meanings and faculties are well known but to the Dikshita (the adept), who has been initiated into many mysteries, and whose "spiritual birth" is completely achieved; the Vach of the mantra is a spoken power, which awakes another corresponding and still more occult power, each allegorically personified by some god in the world of spirits, and, according as it is used, responded to either by the gods or the Rakshasas (bad spirits). In the Brahmanical and Buddhist ideas, a curse, a blessing, a vow, a desire, an idle thought, can each assume a visible shape and so manifest itselfobjectively to the eyes of its author, or to him that it concerns.
Every sin becomes incarnated, so to say, and like an avenging fiend persecutes its perpetrator.
There are words which have a destructive quality in their very syllables, as though objective things; for every sound awakens a corresponding one in the invisible world of spirit, and the repercussion produces either a good or bad effect. Harmonious rhythm, a melody vibrating softly in the atmosphere, creates a beneficent and sweet influence around, and acts most powerfully on the psychological as well as physical natures of every living thing on earth; it reacts even on inanimate objects, for matter is still spirit in its essence, invisible as it may seem to our grosser senses.
So with the numerals. Turn wherever we will, from the Prophets to the Apocalypse, and we will see the biblical writers constantly using the numbers three, four, seven, and twelve.
And yet we have known some partisans of the Bible who maintained that the Vedas were copied from the Mosaic books!* The Vedas, which are written in Sanscrit, a language whose grammatical rules and forms, as Max Muller and other scholars confess, were completely established long before the days when the great wave of emigration bore it from Asia all over the Occident, are there to proclaim their parentage of every philosophy, and every religious institution developed later among Semitic peoples. And which of the numerals most frequently occur in the Sanscrit chants, those sublime hymns to creation, to the unity of God, and the countless manifestations of His power? One, three, and seven. Read the hymn by Dirghatamas.
"To Him who represents all the Gods."
"The God here present, our blessed patron, our sacrificer, has a brother who spreads himself in mid-air. There exists a third Brother whom we sprinkle with our libations. . . . It is he whom I have seen master of men and armed with seven rays."†
"Seven Bridles aid in guiding a car which has but one wheel, and which is drawn by a single horse that shines with seven rays. The wheel has three limbs, an immortal wheel, never-wearying, whence hang all the worlds."
"Sometimes seven horses drag a car of seven wheels, and seven personages mount it, accompanied by seven fecund nymphs of the water."
And the following again, in honor of the fire-god — Agni, who is so clearly shown but a spirit subordinate to the One God.
"Ever one, although having three forms of double nature (androgynous) — he rises! and the priests offer to God, in the act of sacrifice, their prayers which reach the heavens, borne aloft by Agni."
Is this a coincidence, or, rather, as reason tells us, the result of the derivation of many national cults from one primitive, universal religion? A mystery for the uninitiated, the unveiling of the most sublime (because correct and true) psychological and physiological problems for the initiate. Revelations of the personal spirit of man which is divine because that spirit is not only the emanation of the one Supreme God, but is the only God man is able, in his weakness and helplessness, to comprehend — to feel within himself. This truth the Vedic poet clearly confesses, when saying:
"The Lord, Master of the universe and full of wisdom, has entered with me (into me) — weak and ignorant — and has formed me of himself in that place* where the spirits obtain, by the help of Science, the peaceful enjoyment of the fruit, as sweet as ambrosia."
Whether we call this fruit "an apple" from the Tree of Knowledge, or the pippala of the Hindu poet, it matters not. It is the fruit of esoteric wisdom. Our object is to show the existence of a religious system in India for many thousands of years before the exoteric fables of the Garden of Eden and the Deluge had been invented. Hence the identity of doctrines. Instructed in them, each of the initiates of other countries became, in his turn, the founder of some great school of philosophy in the West.
Who of our Sanscrit scholars has ever felt interested in discovering the real sense of the following hymns, palpable as it is: "Pippala, the sweet fruit of that tree upon which come spirits who love the science (?) and where the gods produce all marvels. This is a mystery for him who knows not the Father of the world."
Or this one again:
"These stanzas bear at their head a title which announces that they are consecrated to the Viswadevas (that is to say, to all the gods). He who knows not the Being whom I sing in all his manifestations, will comprehend nothing of my verses; those who do know Him are not strangers to this reunion."
This refers to the reunion and parting of the immortal and mortal parts of man. "The immortal Being," says the preceding stanza, "is in the cradle of the mortal Being. The two eternal spirits go and come everywhere; only some men know the one without knowing the other" (Dirghatamas).
Who can give a correct idea of Him of whom the Rig-Veda says:
"That which is One the wise call it in divers manners." That One is sung by the Vedic poets in all its manifestations in nature; and the books considered "childish and foolish" teach how at will to call the beings of wisdom for our instruction. They teach, as Porphyry says: "a liberation from all terrene concerns . . . a flight of the alone to the Alone."
Professor Max Muller, whose every word is accepted by his school as philological gospel, is undoubtedly right in one sense when in determining the nature of the Hindu gods, he calls them "masks without an actor . . . names without being, not beings without names."* For he but proves thereby the monotheism of the ancient Vedic religion. But it seems to us more than dubious whether he or any scientist of his school needed hope to fathom the old Aryan† thought, without an accurate study of those very "masks." To the materialist, as to the scientist, who for various reasons endeavors to work out the difficult problem of compelling facts to agree with either their own hobbies or those of the Bible, they may seem but the empty shells of phantoms. Yet such authorities will ever be, as in the past, the unsafest of guides, except in matters of exact science. The Bible patriarchs are as much "masks without actors," as the pragapatis, and yet, if the living personage behind these masks is but an abstract shadow there is an idea embodied in every one of them which belongs to the philosophical and scientific theories of ancient wisdom.‡ And who can render better service in this work than the native Brahmans themselves, or the kabalists?
To deny, point-blank, any sound philosophy in the later Brahmanical speculations upon the Rig-Veda, is equivalent to refusing to ever correctly understand the mother-religion itself, which gave rise to them, and which is the expression of the inner thought of the direct ancestors of these later authors of the Brahmanas. If learned Europeans can so
readily show that all the Vedic gods are but empty masks, they must also be ready to demonstrate that the Brahmanical authors were as incapable as themselves to discover these "actors" anywhere. This done, not only the three other sacred books which Max Muller says "do not deserve the name of Vedas,"but the Rig-Veda itself becomes a meaningless jumble of words; for what the world-renowned and subtile intellect of the ancient Hindu sages failed to understand, no modern scientist, however learned, can hope to fathom. Poor Thomas Taylor was right in saying that "philology is not philosophy."
It is, to say the least, illogical to admit that there is a hidden thought in the literary work of a race perhaps ethnologically different from our own; and then, because it is utterly unintelligible to us whose spiritual development during the several thousand intervening years has bifurcated into quite a contrary direction — deny that it has any sense in it at all. But this is precisely what, with all due respect for erudition, Professor Max Muller and his school do in this instance, at least. First of all, we are told that, albeit cautiously and with some effort, yet we may still walk in the footsteps of these authors of the Vedas. "We shall feel that we are brought face to face and mind to mind with men yet intelligible to us after we have freed ourselves from our modern conceits. We shall not succeed always; words, verses, nay whole hymns in the Rig-Veda, will and must remain to us a dead letter. . . . For, with a few exceptions . . . the whole world of the Vedic ideas is so entirely beyond our own intellectual horizon, that instead of translating, we can as yet only guess and combine."*
And yet, to leave us in no possible doubt as to the true value of his words, the learned scholar, in another passage, expresses his opinion on these same Vedas (with one exception) thus: "The only important, the only real Veda, is the Rig-Veda — the other so-called Vedas deserve the name of Veda no more than the Talmud deserves the name of Bible."Professor Muller rejects them as unworthy of the attention of any one, and, as we understand it, on the ground that they contain chiefly "sacrificial formulas, charms, and incantations."†
And now, a very natural question: Are any of our scholars prepared to demonstrate that, so far, they are intimately acquainted with the hidden sense of these perfectly absurd "sacrificial formulas, charms, and incantations" and magic nonsense of Atharva-Veda? We believe not, and our doubt is based on the confession of Professor Muller himself, just quoted. If "the whole world of the Vedic ideas [the Rig-Veda cannot
be included alone in this world, we supposis so entirely beyond our own [the scientists'] intellectual horizon that, instead of translating, we can as yet only guess and combine"; and the Yagur-Veda, Sama-Veda, and Atharva-Veda are "childish and foolish";* and the Brahmanas, theSutras Yaska, and Sayana, "though nearest in time to the hymns of the Rig-Veda, indulge in the most frivolous and ill-judged interpretations," how can either himself or any other scholar form any adequate opinion of either of them? If, again, the authors of the Brahmanas, the nearest in time to the Vedic hymns, were already incompetent to offer anything better than "ill-judged interpretations," then at what period of history, where, and by whom, were written these grandiose poems, whose mystical sense has died with their generations? Are we, then, so wrong in affirming that if sacred texts are found in Egypt to have become — even to the priestly scribes of 4,000 years ago — wholly unintelligible,† and the Brahmanas offer but "childish and foolish" interpretations of the Rig-Veda, at least as far back as that, then, 1st, both the Egyptian and Hindu religious philosophies are of an untold antiquity, far antedating ages cautiously assigned them by our students of comparative mythology; and, 2d, the claims of ancient priests of Egypt and modern Brahmans, as to their age, are, after all, correct.
We can never admit that the three other Vedas are less worthy of their name than the Rig-hymns, or that the Talmud and the Kabala are so inferior to the Bible. The very name of the Vedas (the literal meaning of which is knowledge or wisdom) shows them to belong to the literature of those men who, in every country, language, and age, have been spoken of as "those who know." In Sanscrit the third person singular is veda (he knows), and the plural is vida (they know). This word is synonymous with the Greek [[Theosebeia]], which Plato uses when speaking of the wise — the magicians; and with the Hebrew Hakamin, (wise men). Reject the Talmud and its old predecessor the Kabala, and it will be simply impossible ever to render correctly one word of that Bible so much extolled at their expense. But then it is, perhaps, just what its partisans are working for. To banish the Brahmanas is to fling away the key that unlocks the door of the Rig-Veda. The literal interpretation of the Bible has already borne its fruits; with the Vedas and the Sanscrit sacred books in general it will be just the same, with this difference, that the absurd interpretation of the Bible has received a time-honored right of eminent domain in the department of the ridiculous; and will find its
supporters, against light and against proof. As to the "heathen" literature, after a few more years of unsuccessful attempts at interpretation, its religious meaning will be relegated to the limbo of exploded superstitions, and people will hear no more of it.
We beg to be clearly understood before we are blamed and criticised for the above remarks. The vast learning of the celebrated Oxford professor can hardly be questioned by his very enemies, yet we have a right to regret his precipitancy to condemn that which he himself confesses "entirely beyond our own intellectual horizon." Even in what he considers a ridiculous blunder on the part of the author of the Brahmanas, other more spiritually-disposed persons may see quite the reverse. "Who is the greatest of the gods? Who shall first be praised by our songs?" says an ancient Rishi of the Rig-Veda; mistaking (as Prof. M. imagines) the interrogative pronoun "Who" for some divine name. Says the Professor: "A place is allotted in the sacrificial invocations to a god 'Who,' and hymns addressed to him are called 'Whoish hymns.' " And is a god "Who" less natural as a term than a god "I am"? or "Whoish" hymns less reverential than "I-amish" psalms? And who can prove that this is really a blunder, and not a premeditated expression? Is it so impossible to believe that the strange term was precisely due to a reverential awe which made the poet hesitate before giving a name, as form to that which is justly considered as the highest abstraction of metaphysical ideals — God? Or that the same feeling made the commentator who came after him to pause and so leave the work of anthropomorphizing the "Unknown," the "Who," to future human conception? "These early poets thought more for themselves — than for others," remarks Max Muller himself. "They sought rather, in their language, to be true to their own thought than to please the imagination of their hearers."* Unfortunately it is this very thought which awakes no responsive echo in the minds of our philologists.
Farther, we read the sound advice to students of the Rig-Veda hymns, to collect, collate, sift, and reject. "Let him study the commentaries, the Sutras, the Brahmanas, and even later works, in order to exhaust all the sources from which information can be derived. He [the scholamust not despise the traditions of the Brahmans, even where their misconceptions . . . are palpable. . . . Not a corner in the Brahmanas, the Sutras, Yaska, and Sayana, should be left unexplored before we propose a rendering of our own. . . . When the scholar has done his work, the poet and philosopher must take it up and finish it."†
Poor chance for a "philosopher" to step into the shoes of a learned
philologist and presume to correct his errors! We would like to see what sort of a reception the most learned Hindu scholar in India would have from the educated public of Europe and America, if he should undertake to correct a savant, after he had sifted, accepted, rejected, explained, and declared what was good, and what "absurd and childish" in the sacred books of his forefathers. That which would finally be declared "Brahmanic misconceptions," by the conclave of European and especially German savants, would be as little likely to be reconsidered at the appeal of the most erudite pundit of Benares or Ceylon, as the interpretation of Jewish Scripture by Maimonides and Philo-Judaeus, by Christians after the Councils of the Church had accepted the mistranslations and explanations of Irenaeus and Eusebius. What pundit, or native philosopher of India should know his ancestral language, religion, or philosophy as well as an Englishman or a German? Or why should a Hindu be more suffered to expound Brahmanism, than a Rabbinical scholar to interpret Judaism or the Isaian prophecies? Safer, and far more trustworthy translators can be had nearer home. Nevertheless, let us still hope that we may find at last, even though it be in the dim future, a European philosopher to sift the sacred books of the wisdom-religion, and not be contradicted by every other of his class.
Meanwhile, unmindful of any alleged authorities, let us try to sift for ourselves a few of these myths of old. We will search for an explanation within the popular interpretation, and feel our way with the help of the magic lamp of Trismegistus — the mysterious number seven. There must have been some reason why this figure was universally accepted as a mystic calculation. With every ancient people, the Creator, or Demiurge, was placed over the seventh heaven. "And were I to touch upon the initiation into our sacred Mysteries," says Emperor Julian, the kabalist, "which the Chaldean bacchised respecting the seven-rayed God, lifting up the souls through Him, I should say things unknown, and very unknown to the rabble, but well known to the blessed Theurgists."* In Lydus it is said that "The Chaldeans call the God IAO, and Sabaoth he is often called, as He who is over the seven orbits (heavens, or spheres), that is the Demiurge."†
One must consult the Pythagoreans and Kabalists to learn the potentiality of this number. Exoterically the seven rays of the solar spectrum are represented concretely in the seven-rayed god Heptaktis. These seven rays epitomized into THREE primary rays, namely, the red, blue, and yellow, form the solar trinity, and typify respectively spirit-
matter and spirit-essence. Science has also reduced of late the seven rays to three primary ones, thus corroborating the scientific conception of the ancients of at least one of the visible manifestations of the invisible deity, and the seven divided into a quaternary and a trinity.
The Pythagoreans called the number seven the vehicle of life, as it contained body and soul. They explained it by saying, that the human body consisted of four principal elements, and that the soul is triple, comprising reason, passion, and desire. The ineffable Word was considered the Seventh and highest of all, for there are six minor substitutes, each belonging to a degree of initiation. The Jews borrowed their Sabbath from the ancients, who called it Saturn's day and deemed it unlucky, and not the latter from the Israelites when Christianized. The people of India, Arabia, Syria, and Egypt observed weeks of seven days; and the Romans learned the hebdomadal method from these foreign countries when they became subject to the Empire. Still it was not until the fourth century that the Roman kalends, nones, and ides were abandoned, and weeks substituted in their place; and the astronomical names of the days, such as dies Solis (day of the Sun), dies Lunae (day of the Moon), dies Martis (day of Mars); dies Mercurii (day of Mercury), dies Jovis (day of Jupiter), dies Veneris (day of Venus), and dies Saturni (day of Saturn), prove that it was not from the Jews that the week of seven days was adopted. Before we examine this number kabalistically, we propose to analyse it from the standpoint of the Judaico-Christian Sabbath.
When Moses instituted the yom shaba, or Shebang (Shabbath), the allegory of the Lord God resting from his work of creation on the seventh day was but a cloak, or, as the Sohar expresses it, a screen, to hide the true meaning.
The Jews reckoned then, as they do now, their days by number, as, day the first; day the second; and so on; yom ahad; yom sheni; yom shelisho; yom rebis; yom shamishi; yom shishehi; Yom shaba.
"The Hebrew seven , consisting of three letters, S. B. O., has more than one meaning. First of all, it means age or cycle, Shab-ang; Sabbath can be translated old age, as well as rest, and in the old Coptic, Sabe means wisdom, learning. Modern archaeologists have found that as in Hebrew Sab also means gray-headed, and that therefore the Saba-day was the day on which the "gray-headed men, or 'aged fathers' of a tribe, were in the habit of assembling for councils or sacrifices."*
"Thus, the week of six days and the seventh, the Saba or Sapta-day period, is of the highest antiquity. The observance of the lunar festivals in India, shows that that nation held hebdomadal meetings as well. With
every new quarter the moon brings changes in the atmosphere, hence certain changes are also produced throughout the whole of our universe, of which the meteorological ones are the most insignificant. On this day of the seventh and most powerful of the prismatic days, the adepts of the "Secret Science" meet as they met thousands of years ago, to become the agents of the occult powers of nature (emanations of the working God), and commune with the invisible worlds. It is in this observance of the seventh day by the old sages — not as the resting day of the Deity, but because they had penetrated into its occult power, that lies the profound veneration of all the heathen philosophers for the number seven which they term the "venerable," the sacred number. The Pythagorean Tetraktis, revered by the Platonists, was the square placed below the triangle; the latter, or the Trinity embodying the invisible Monad — the unity, and deemed too sacred to be pronounced except within the walls of a Sanctuary.
The ascetic observance of the Christian Sabbath by Protestants is pure religious tyranny, and does more harm, we fear, than good. It really dates only from the enactment (in 1678) of the 29th of Charles II., which prohibited any "tradesman, artificer, workman, laborer, or other person," to "do or exercise any worldly labor, etc., etc., upon the Lord's day." The Puritans carried this thing to extremes, apparently to mark their hatred of Catholicism, both Roman and Episcopal. That it was no part of the plan of Jesus that such a day should be set apart, is evident not only from his words but acts. It was not observed by the early Christians.
When Trypho, the Jew, reproached the Christians for not having a Sabbath, what does the martyr answer him? "The new law will have you keep a perpetual Sabbath. You, when you have passed a day in idleness, think you are religious. The Lord is not pleased with such things as these. If any be guilty of perjury or fraud, let him reform; if he be an adulterer, let him repent; and he will then have kept the kind of Sabbath truly pleasing to God. . . . The elements are never idle, and keep no Sabbath. There was no need of the observance of Sabbaths before Moses, neither now is there any need of them after Jesus Christ."
The Heptaktis is not the Supreme Cause, but simply an emanation from Him — the first visible manifestation of the Unrevealed Power. "His Divine Breath, which, violently breaking forth, condensed itself, shining with radiance until it evolved into Light, and so became cognizant to external sense," says John Reuchlin.* This is the emanation of the Highest, the Demiurge, a multiplicity in a unity, theElohim, whom we
see creating our world, or rather fashioning it, in six days, and resting on the seventh. And who are these Elohim but the euhemerized powers of nature, the faithful manifested servants, the laws of Him who is immutable law and harmony Himself?
They remain over the seventh heaven (or spiritual world), for it is they who, according to the kabalists, formed in succession the six material worlds, or rather, attempts at worlds, that preceded our own, which, they say, is the seventh. If, in laying aside the metaphysico-spiritual conception, we give our attention but to the religio-scientific problem of creation in "six days," over which our best biblical scholars have vainly pondered so long, we might, perchance, be on the way to the true idea underlying the allegory. The ancients were philosophers, consistent in all things. Hence, they taught that each of these departed worlds, having performed its physical evolution, and reached — through birth, growth, maturity, old age, and death — the end of its cycle, had returned to its primitive subjective form of a spiritual earth. Thereafter it had to serve through all eternity as the dwelling of those who had lived on it as men, and even animals, but were now spirits. This idea, were it even as incapable of exact demonstration as that of our theologians relating to Paradise, is, at least, a trifle more philosophical.
As well as man, and every other living thing upon it, our planet has had its spiritual and physical evolution. From an impalpable ideal thought under the creative Will of Him of whom we know nothing, and but dimly conceive in imagination, this globe became fluidic and semi-spiritual, then condensed itself more and more, until its physical development — matter, the tempting demon — compelled it to try its own creative faculty. Matter defied Spirit, and the earth, too, had its "Fall." The allegorical curse under which it labors, is that it only procreates, it does not create. Our physical planet is but the handmaiden, or rather the maid-of-all-work, of the spirit, its master. "Cursed be the ground . . . thorns and thistles shall it bring," the Elohim are made to say. "In sorrow thou shalt bring forth children." The Elohim say this both to the ground and the woman. And this curse will last until the minutest particle of matter on earth shall have outlived its days, until every grain of dust has, by gradual transformation through evolution, become a constituent part of a "living soul," and, until the latter shall reascend the cyclic arc, and finally stand — its own Metatron, or Redeeming Spirit — at the foot of the upper step of the spiritual worlds, as at the first hour of its emanation. Beyond that lies the great "Deep" — A MYSTERY!
It must be remembered that every cosmogony has a trinity of workers at its head — Father, spirit; Mother, nature, or matter; and the mani-
fested universe, the Son or result of the two. The universe, also, as well as each planet which it comprehends, passes through four ages, like man himself. All have their infancy, youth, maturity, and old age, and these four added to the other three make the sacred seven again.
The introductory chapters of Genesis were never meant to present even a remote allegory of the creation of our earth. They embrace (chapter i.) a metaphysical conception of some indefinite period in the eternity, when successive attempts were being made by the law of evolution at the formation of universes. This idea is plainly stated in the Sohar: "There were old worlds, which perished as soon as they came into existence, were formless, and were called sparks. Thus, the smith, when hammering the iron, lets the sparks fly in all directions. The sparks are the primordial worlds which could not continue, because the Sacred Aged (Sephira) had not as yet assumed its form (of androgyne or opposite sexes) of king and queen (Sephira and Kadmon) and the Master was not yet at his work."*
The six periods or "days" of Genesis refer to the same metaphysical belief. Five such ineffectual attempts were made by the Elohim, but the sixth resulted in worlds like our own (i.e., all the planets and most of the stars are worlds, and inhabited, though not like our earth). Having formed this world at last in the sixth period, the Elohim rested in the seventh. Thus the "Holy One," when he created the present world, said: "This pleases me; the previous ones did not please me."† And the Elohim "saw everything that he had made, and behold it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day." — Genesis i.
The reader will remember that in Chapter IV. an explanation was given of the "day" and "night" of Brahma. The former represents a certain period of cosmical activity, the latter an equal one of cosmical repose. In the one, worlds are being evolved, and passing through their allotted four ages of existence; in the latter the "inbreathing" of Brahma reverses the tendency of the natural forces; everything visible becomes gradually dispersed; chaos comes; and a long night of repose reinvigorates the cosmos for its next term of evolution. In the morning of one
of these "days" the formative processes are gradually reaching their climax of activity; in the evening imperceptibly diminishing the same until the pralaya arrives, and with it "night." One such morning and evening do, in fact, constitute a cosmic day; and it was a "day of Brahma" that the kabalistic author of Genesis had in mind each time when he said: "And the evening and the morning were the first (or fifth or sixth, or any other) day."Six days of gradual evolution, one of repose, and then — evening! Since the first appearance of man on our earth there has been an eternal Sabbath or rest for the Demiurge.
The cosmogonical speculations of the first six chapters of Genesis are shown in the races of "sons of God," "giants," etc., of chapter vi. Properly speaking, the story of the formation of our earth, or "creation," as it is very improperly called, begins with the rescue of Noah from the deluge. The Chaldeo-Babylonian tablets recently translated by George Smith leave no doubt of that in the minds of those who read the inscriptions esoterically. Ishtar, the great goddess, speaks in column iii. of the destruction of the sixth world and the appearance of the seventh, thus:
"Six days and nights the wind, deluge, and storm overwhelmed.
"On the seventh day, in its course was calmed the storm, and all the deluge,
"which had destroyed like an earthquake,*
"quieted. The sea he caused to dry, and the wind and deluge ended. . . .
"I perceived the shore at the boundary of the sea. . . .
"to the country of Nizir went the ship (argha, or the moon).
"the mountain of Nizir stopped the ship. . . .
"the first day, and the second day, the mountain of Nizir the same.
"the fifth and the sixth, the mountain of Nizir the same.
"on the seventh day, in the course of it
"I sent forth a dove, and it left. The dove went and turned, and . . . the raven went . . . and did not return.
"I built an altar on the peak of the mountain.
"by seven herbs I cut, at the bottom of them I placed reeds, pines, and simgar. . . .
"the gods like flies over the sacrifice gathered.
"from of old also the great God in his course.
"the great brightness (the sun) of Anu had created.* When the glory of those gods the charm round my neck would not repel," etc.
All this has a purely astronomical, magical, and esoteric relation. One who reads these tablets will recognize at a glance the biblical account; and judge, at the same time, how disfigured is the great Babylonian poem by euhemeric personages — degraded from their exalted positions of gods into simple patriarchs. Space prevents our entering fully into this biblical travesty of the Chaldean allegories. We shall therefore but remind the reader that by the confession of the most unwilling witnesses — such as Lenormant, first the inventor and then champion of the Akkadians — the Chaldeo-Babylonian triad placed under Ilon, the unrevealed deity, is composed of Anu, Nuah, and Bel. Anu is the primordial chaos, the god time and world at once, [[chromos]] and [[Kosmos]], the uncreated matter issued from the one and fundamental principle of all things. As to Nuah, he is, according to the same Orientalist:
". . . the intelligence, we will willingly say the verbum, which animates and fecundates matter, which penetrates the universe, directs and makes it live; and at the same time Nuah is the king of the humid principle; the Spirit moving on the waters."
Is not this evident? Nuah is Noah, floating on the waters, in his ark; the latter being the emblem of the argha, or moon, the feminine principle; Noah is the "spirit" falling into matter. We find him as soon as he descends upon the earth, planting a vineyard, drinking of the wine, and getting drunk on it; i.e., the pure spirit becoming intoxicated as soon as it is finally imprisoned in matter. The seventh chapter of Genesis is but another version of the first. Thus, while the latter reads: " . . . and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the spirit (of God) moved upon the face of the waters," in chapter seventh, it is said: " . . . and the waters prevailed . . . and the ark went (with Noah — the spirit) upon the face of the waters." Thus Noah, if the Chaldean Nuah, is the spirit vivifying matter, chaos represented by the
deep or waters of the flood. In the Babylonian legend it is Istar (Astoreth, the moon) which is shut up in the ark, and sends out a dove (emblem of Venus and other lunar goddesses) in search of dry land. And whereas in the Semitic tablets it is Xisuthrus or Hasisadra who is "translated to the company of the gods for his piety," in the Bible it is Enoch who walks with, and being taken up by God, "was no more."
The successive existence of an incalculable number of worlds before the subsequent evolution of our own, was believed and taught by all the ancient peoples. The punishment of the Christians for despoiling the Jews of their records and refusing the true key to them began from the earliest centuries. And thus is it that we find the holy Fathers of the Church laboring through an impossible chronology and the absurdities of literal interpretation, while the learned rabbis were perfectly aware of the real significance of their allegories. So not only in the Sohar, but also in other kabalistic works accepted by Talmudists, such as Midrash Berasheth, or the universal Genesis, which, with the Merkaba (the chariot of Ezekiel), composes the Kabala, may be found the doctrine of a whole series of worlds evolving out of the chaos, and being destroyed in succession.
The Hindu doctrines teach of two Pralayas or dissolutions; one universal, the Maha-Pralaya, the other partial, or the minor Pralaya. This does not relate to the universal dissolution which occurs at the end of every "Day of Brahma," but to the geological cataclysms at the end of every minor cycle of our globe. This historical and purely local deluge of Central Asia, the traditions of which can be traced in every country, and which, according to Bunsen, happened about the year 10,000 B.C., had naught to do with the mythical Noah, or Nuah. A partial cataclysm occurs at the close of every "age" of the world, they say, which does not destroy the latter, but only changes its general appearance. New races of men and animals and a new flora evolve from the dissolution of the precedent ones.
The allegories of the "fall of man" and the "deluge," are the two most important features of the Pentateuch. They are, so to say, the Alpha and Omega, the highest and the lowest keys of the scale of harmony on which resounds the majestic hymns of the creation of mankind; for they discover to him who questions the Zura (figurative Gematria), the process of man's evolution from the highest spiritual entity unto the lowest physical — the post-diluvian man, as in the Egyptian hieroglyphics, every sign of the picture writing which cannot be made to fit within a certain circumscribed geometrical figure may be rejected as only intended by the sacred hierogrammatist for a premeditated blind — so many of the details in the Bible must be treated on the same principle, that por-
tion only being accepted which answers to the numerical methods taught in the Kabala.
The deluge appears in the Hindu books only as a tradition. It claims no sacred character, and we find it but in the Mahabharata, the Puranas, and still earlier in the Satapatha, one of the latest Brahmanas. It is more than probable that Moses, or whoever wrote for him, used these accounts as the basis of his own purposely disfigured allegory, adding to it moreover the Chaldean Berosian narrative. In Mahabharata, we recognize Nimrod under the name of King Daytha. The origin of the Grecian fable of the Titans scaling Olympus, and the other of the builders of the Tower of Babel who seek to reach heaven, is shown in the impious Daytha, who sends imprecations against heaven's thunder, and threatens to conquer heaven itself with his mighty warriors, thereby bringing upon humanity the wrath of Brahma. "The Lord then resolved," says the text, "to chastise his creatures with a terrible punishment which should serve as a warning to survivors, and to their descendants."
Vaivasvata (who in the Bible becomes Noah) saves a little fish, which turns out to be an avatar of Vishnu. The fish warns that just man that the globe is about to be submerged, that all that inhabit it must perish, and orders him to construct a vessel in which he shall embark, with all his family. When the ship is ready, and Vaivasvata has shut up in it with his family the seeds of plants and pairs of all animals, and the rain begins to fall, a gigantic fish, armed with a horn, places itself at the head of the ark. The holy man, following its orders, attaches a cable to this horn, and the fish guides the ship safely through the raging elements. In the Hindu tradition the number of days during which the deluge lasted agrees exactly with that of the Mosaic account. When the elements were calmed, the fish landed the ark on the summit of the Himalayas.
This fable is considered by many orthodox commentators to have been borrowed from the Mosaic Scriptures.* But surely if such a universal cataclysm had ever taken place within man's memory, some of the monuments of the Egyptians, of which many are of such a tremendous antiquity, would have recorded that occurrence, coupled with that of the
disgrace of Ham, Canaan, and Mizraim, their alleged ancestors. But, till now, there has not been found the remotest allusion to such a calamity, although Mizraim certainly belongs to the first generation after the deluge, if not actually an antediluvian himself. On the other hand the Chaldeans preserved the tradition, as we find Berosus testifying to it, and the ancient Hindus possess the legend as given above. Now, there is but one explanation of the extraordinary fact that of two contemporary and civilized nations like Egypt and Chaldea, one has preserved no tradition of it whatever, although it was the most directly interested in the occurrence — if we credit the Bible — and the other has. The deluge noticed in the Bible, in one of the Brahmanas, and in the Berosus Fragment, relates to the partial flood which, about 10,000 years B.C., according to Bunsen, and according to the Brahmanical computations of the Zodiac also changed the whole face of Central Asia.* Thus the Babylonians and the Chaldeans might have learned of it from their mysterious guests, christened by some Assyriologists Akkadians, or what is still more probable they, themselves, perhaps, were the descendants of those who had dwelt in the submerged localities. The Jews had the tale from the latter as they had everything else; the Brahmans may have recorded the traditions of the lands which they first invaded, and had perhaps inhabited before they possessed themselves of the Punjab. But the Egyptians, whose first settlers had evidently come from Southern India, had less reason to record the cataclysm, since it had perhaps never affected them except indirectly, as the flood was limited to Central Asia.
Burnouf, noticing the fact that the story of the deluge is found only in one of the most modern Brahmanas, also thinks that it might have been borrowed by the Hindus from the Semitic nations. Against such an assumption are ranged all the traditions and customs of the Hindus. The Aryans, and especially the Brahmans, never borrowed anything at all from the Semitists, and here we are corroborated by one of those "unwilling witnesses," as Higgins calls the partisans of Jehovah and Bible. "I have never seen anything in the history of the Egyptians and Jews," writes Abbe Dubois, forty years a resident of India, "that would induce me to believe that either of these nations, or any other on the face of the earth, have been established earlier than the Hindus, and particularly the Brahmans; so I cannot be induced to believe that the latter have drawn their rites from foreign nations. On the contrary, I infer that they have drawn them from an original source of their own. Whoever knows anything of the spirit and character of the Brahmans, their stateliness, their pride, and extreme vanity, their distance, and sovereign contempt for
everything that is foreign, and of which they cannot boast to have been the inventors, will agree with me that such a people cannot have consented to draw their customs and rules of conduct from an alien country."*
This fable which mentions the earliest avatar — the Matsya — relates to another yuga than our own, that of the first appearance of animal life; perchance, who knows, to the Devonian age of our geologists? It certainly answers better to the latter than the year 2348 B.C.! Apart from this, the very absence of all mention of the deluge from the oldest books of the Hindus suggests a powerful argument when we are left utterly to inferences as in this case. "The Vedas and Manu," says Jacolliot, "those monuments of the old Asiatic thought, existed far earlier than the diluvian period; this is an incontrovertible fact, having all the value of an historical truth, for, besides the tradition which shows Vishnu himself as saving the Vedas from the deluge — a tradition which, notwithstanding its legendary form, must certainly rest upon a real fact — it has been remarked that neither of these sacred books mention the cataclysm, while the Puranas and the Mahabharata, and a great number of other more recent works, describe it with the minutest detail, which is a proof of the priority of the former. The Vedas certainly would never have failed to contain a few hymns on the terrible disaster which, of all other natural manifestations, must have struck the imagination of the people who witnessed it."
"Neither would Manu, who gives us a complete narrative of the creation, with a chronology from the divine and heroical ages, down to the appearance of man on earth — have passed in silence an event of such importance." Manu (book i., sloka 35), gives the names of ten eminent saints whom he calls pradjapatis (more correctly pragapatis), in whom the Brahman theologians see prophets, ancestors of the human race, and the Pundits simply consider as ten powerful kings who lived in the Krita-yug, or the age of good (the golden age of the Greeks).
The last of these pragapatis is Brighou.
"Enumerating the succession of these eminent beings who, according to Manu, have governed the world, the old Brahmanical legislator names as descending from Brighou: Swarotchica, Ottami, Tamasa, Raivata, the glorious Tchakchoucha, and the son of Vivasvat, every one of the six having made himself worthy of the title of Manu (divine legislator), a title which had equally belonged to the Pradjapatis, and every great personage of primitive India. The genealogy stops at this name.
"Now, according to the Puranas and the Mahabharata it was under a descendant of this son of Vivaswata, named Vaivaswata that occurred the great cataclysm, the remembrance of which, as will be seen, has passed into a tradition, and been carried by emigration into all the countries of the East and West which India has colonized since then. . . .
"The genealogy given by Manu stopping, as we have seen, at Vivaswata, it follows that this work (of Manu) knew nothing either of Vaivaswata or the deluge."*
The argument is unanswerable; and we commend it to those official scientists, who, to please the clergy, dispute every fact proving the tremendous antiquity of the Vedas and Manu. Colonel Vans Kennedy has long since declared that Babylonia was, from her origin, the seat of Sanscrit literature and Brahman learning. And how or why should the Brahmans have penetrated there, unless it was as the result of intestine wars and emigration from India? The fullest account of the deluge is found in the Mahabharata of Vedavyasa, a poem in honor of the astrological allegories on the wars between the Solar and the Lunar races. One of the versions states that Vivaswata became the father of all the nations of the earth through his own progeny, and this is the form adopted for the Noachian story; the other states that — like Deukalion and Pyrrha — he had but to throw pebbles into the ilus left by the retiring waves of the flood, to produce men at will. These two versions — one Hebrew, the other Greek — allow us no choice. We must either believe that the Hindus borrowed from pagan Greeks as well as from monotheistic Jews, or — what is far more probable — that the versions of both of these nations are derived from the Vedic literature through the Babylonians.
History tells us of the stream of immigration across the Indus, and later of its overflowing the Occident; and of populations of Hindu origin passing from Asia Minor to colonize Greece. But history says not a single word of the "chosen people," or of Greek colonies having penetrated India earlier than the 5th and 4th centuries B.C., when we first find vague traditions that make some of the problematical lost tribes of Israel, take from Babylon the route to India. But even were the story of the ten tribes to find credence, and the tribes themselves be proved to have existed in profane as well as in sacred history, this does not help the solution at all. Colebrooke, Wilson, and other eminent Indianists show the Mahabharata, if not the Satapatha-brahmana, in which the story is also given, as by far antedating the age of Cyrus, hence, the possible time of the appearance of any of the tribes of Israel in India.†
Orientalists accord the Mahabharata an antiquity of between twelve and fifteen hundred years B.C.; as to the Greek version it bears as little evidence as the other, and the attempts of the Hellenists in this direction have as signally failed. The story of the conquering army of Alexander penetrating into Northern India, itself becomes more doubted every day. No Hindu national record, not the slightest historical memento, throughout the length and breadth of India offers the slightest trace of such an invasion.
If even such historical facts are now found to have been all the while fictions, what are we to think of narratives which bear on their very face the stamp of invention? We cannot help sympathizing at heart with Professor Muller when he remarks that it seems "blasphemy to consider these fables of the heathen world as corrupted and misinterpreted fragments of divine Revelation once granted to the whole race of mankind." Only, can this scholar be held perfectly impartial and fair to both parties, unless he includes in the number of these fables those of the Bible? And is the language of the Old Testament more pure or moral than the books of the Brahmans? Or any fables of the heathen world more blasphemous and ridiculous than Jehovah's interview with Moses (Exodus xxxiii. 23)? Are any of the Pagan gods made to appear more fiendish than the same Jehovah in a score of passages? If the feelings of a pious Christian are shocked at the absurdities of Father Kronos eating his children and maiming Uranos; or of Jupiter throwing Vulcan down from heaven and breaking his leg; on the other hand he cannot feel hurt if a non-Christian laughs at the idea of Jacob boxing with the Creator, who "when he saw that he prevailed not against him," dislocated Jacob's thigh, the patriarch still holding fast to God and not allowing Him to go His way, notwithstanding His pleading.
Why should the story of Deukalion and Pyrrha, throwing stones behind them, and thus creating the human race, be deemed more ridiculous than that of Lot's wife being changed into a pillar of salt, or of the Almighty creating men of clay and then breathing the breath of life into them? The choice between the latter mode of creation and that of the Egyptian ram-horned god fabricating man on a potter's wheel is hardly perceptible. The story of Minerva, goddess of wisdom, ushered into existence after a certain period of gestation in her father's brain, is at least suggestive and poetical, as an allegory. No ancient Greek was ever burned for not accepting it literally; and, at all events, "heathen" fables
in general are far less preposterous and blasphemous than those imposed upon Christians, ever since the Church accepted the Old Testament, and the Roman Catholic Church opened its register of thaumaturgical saints.
"Many of the natives of India," continues Professor Muller, "confess that their feelings revolt against the impurities attributed to the gods by what they call their sacred writings; yet there are honest Brahmans who will maintain that these stories have a deeper meaning; that immorality being incompatible with a divine being, a mystery must be supposed to be concealed in these time-hallowed fables, a mystery which an inquiring and reverent mind may hope to fathom."
This is precisely what the Christian clergy maintain in attempting to explain the indecencies and incongruities of the Old Testament. Only, instead of allowing the interpretation to those who have the key to these seeming incongruities, they have assumed to themselves the office and right, by divine proxy, to interpret these in their own way. They have not only done that but have gradually deprived the Hebrew clergy of the means to interpret their Scriptures as their fathers did; so that to find among the Rabbis in the present century a well-versed kabalist, is quite rare. The Jews have themselves forgotten the key! How could they help it? Where are the original manuscripts? The oldest Hebrew manuscript in existence is said to be the Bodleian Codex, which is not older than between eight and nine hundred years.* The break between Ezra and this Codex is thus fifteen centuries. In 1490 the Inquisition caused all the Hebrew Bibles to be burned; and Torquemada alone destroyed 6,000 volumes at Salamanca. Except a few manuscripts of the Tora Ketubim and Nebiim, used in the synagogues, and which are of quite a recent date, we do not think there is one old manuscript in existence which is not punctuated, hence — completely misinterpreted and altered by the Masorets. Were it not for this timely invention of the Masorah, no copy of the Old Testament could possibly be tolerated in our century. It is well known that the Masorets while transcribing the oldest manuscripts put themselves to task to take out, except in a few places which they have probably overlooked, all the immodest words and put
in places sentences of their own, often changing completely the sense of the verse. "It is clear," says Donaldson, "that the Masoretic school at Tiberias were engaged in settling or unsettling the Hebrew text until the final publication of the Masorah itself." Therefore, had we but the original texts — judging by the present copies of the Bible in our possession — it would be really edifying to compare the Old Testament with the Vedas and even with the Brahmanical books. We verily believe that no faith, however blind, could stand before such an avalanche of crude impurities and fables. If the latter are not only accepted but enforced upon millions of civilized persons who find it respectable and edifying to believe in them as divine revelation, why should we wonder that Brahmans believe their books to be equally a Sruti, a revelation?
Let us thank the Masorets by all means, but let us study at the same time both sides of the medal.
Legends, myths, allegories, symbols, if they but belong to the Hindu, Chaldean, or Egyptian tradition, are thrown into the same heap of fiction. Hardly are they honored with a superficial search into their possible relations to astronomy or sexual emblems. The same myths — when and because mutilated — are accepted as Sacred Scriptures, more — the Word of God! Is this impartial history? Is this justice to either the past, the present, or the future? "Ye cannot serve God and Mammon," said the Reformer, nineteen centuries ago. "Ye cannot serve truth and public prejudice," would be more applicable to our own age. Yet our authorities pretend they serve the former.
There are few myths in any religious system but have an historical as well as a scientific foundation. Myths, as Pococke ably expresses it, "are now proved to be fables, just in proportion as we misunderstand them; truths, in proportion as they were once understood. Our ignorance it is which has made a myth of history; and our ignorance is an Hellenic inheritance, much of it the result of Hellenic vanity."*
Bunsen and Champollion have already shown that the Egyptian sacred books are by far older than the oldest parts of the Book of Genesis. And now a more careful research seems to warrant the suspicion — which with us amounts to a certainty, that the laws of Moses are copies from the code of the Brahmanic Manu. Thus, according to every probability, Egypt owes her civilization, her civil institutions, and her arts, to India. But against the latter assumption we have a whole army of "authorities" arrayed, and what matters if the latter do deny the fact at present? Sooner or later they will have to accept it, whether they belong to the German or French school. Among, but not of those
who so readily compromise between interest and conscience, there are some fearless scholars, who may bring out to light incontrovertible facts. Some twenty years since, Max Muller, in a letter to the Editor of the London Times, April, 1857, maintained most vehemently that Nirvana meant annihilation, in the fullest sense of the word. (See Chips, etc., vol. i., p. 287, on the meaning of Nirvana.) But in 1869, in a lecture before the general meeting of the Association of German Philologists at Kiel, "he distinctly declares his belief that the nihilism attributed to Buddha's teaching forms no part of his doctrine, and that it is wholly wrong to suppose that Nirvana means annihilation." (Trubner's American and Oriental Literary Record, Oct. 16, 1869; also Inman's Ancient Faiths and Modern, p. 128.) Yet if we mistake not, Professor Muller was as much of an authority in 1857 as in 1869.
"It will be difficult to settle," says (now) this great scholar, "whether the Vedas is the oldest of books, and whether some of the portions of the Old Testament may not be traced back to the same or even an earlier date than the oldest hymns of the Veda."* But his retraction about the Nirvana allows us a hope that he may yet change his opinion on the question of Genesis likewise, so that the public may have simultaneously the benefit of truth, and the sanction of one of Europe's greatest authorities.
It is well known how little the Orientalists have come to anything like an agreement about the age of Zoroaster, and until this question is settled, it would be safer perhaps to trust implicitly in the Brahmanical calculations by the Zodiac, than to the opinions of scientists. Leaving the profane horde of unrecognized scholars, those we mean who yet wait their turn to be chosen for public worship as idols symbolical of scientific leadership, where can we find, among the sanctioned authorities of the day, two that agree as to this age? There's Bunsen, who places Zoroaster at Baktra, and the emigration of Baktrians to the Indus at 3784 B.C.,† and the birth of Moses at 1392.‡ Now it is rather difficult to place Zoroaster anterior to the Vedas, considering that the whole of his doctrine is that of the earlier Vedas. True, he remained in Afghanistan for a period more or less problematical before crossing into the Punjab; but the Vedas were begun in the latter country. They indicate the progress of the Hindus, as the Avesta that of the Iranians. And there is Haug who assigns to the Aitareya Brahmanam — a Brahmanical speculation and commentary upon the Rig-Veda of a far
later date than the Veda itself — between 1400 and 1200 B.C., while the Vedas are placed by him between 2,000 and 2,400 years B.C. Max Muller cautiously suggests certain difficulties in this chronological computation, but still does not altogether deny it.* Let it, however, be as it may, and supposing that the Pentateuch was written by Moses himself — notwithstanding that he would thereby be made to twice record his own death — still, if Moses was born, as Bunsen finds, in 1392 B.C., thePentateuch could not have been written before the Vedas. Especially if Zoroaster was born 3784 B.C. If, as Dr. Haug† tells us, some of the hymns of the Rig-Veda were written before Zoroaster accomplished his schism, something like thirty-seven centuries B.C., and Max Muller says himself that "the Zoroastrians and their ancestors started from India during the Vaidic period," how can some of the portions of the Old Testament be traced back to the same or even "an earlier date than the oldest hymns of the Veda"?
It has generally been agreed among Orientalists that the Aryans, 3,000 years B.C., were still in the steppes east of the Caspian, and united. Rawlinson conjectures that they "flowed east" from Armenia as a common centre; while two kindred streams began to flow, one northward over the Caucasus, and the other westward over Asia Minor and Europe. He finds the Aryans, at a period anterior to the fifteenth century before our era, "settled in the territory watered by the Upper Indus." Thence Vedic Aryans migrated to the Punjab, and Zendic Aryans westward, establishing the historical countries. But this, like the rest, is a hypothesis, and only given as such.
Again, Rawlinson, evidently following Max Muller, says: "The early history of the Aryans is for many ages an absolute blank." But many learned Brahmans, however, have declared that they found trace of the existence of the Vedas as early as 2100 B.C.; and Sir William Jones, taking for his guide the astronomical data, places the Yagur-Veda 1580 B.C. This would be still "before Moses."
It is upon the supposition that the Aryans did not leave Afghanistan for the Punjab prior to 1500 B.C. that Max Muller and other Oxford savants have supposed that portions of the Old Testament may be traced back to the same or even an earlier date than the oldest hymns of the Veda. Therefore, until the Orientalists can show us the correct date at which Zoroaster flourished, no authority can be regarded as better for the ages of the Vedas than the Brahmans themselves.
As it is a recognized fact that the Jews borrowed most of their laws from the Egyptians, let us examine who were the Egyptians. In our opinion — which is but a poor authority, of course — they were the ancient Indians, and in our first volume we have quoted passages from the historian Collouca-Batta that support such a theory. What we mean by ancient India is the following:
No region on the map — except it be the ancient Scythia — is more uncertainly defined than that which bore the designation of India. AEthiopia is perhaps the only parallel. It was the home of the Cushite or Hamitic races, and lay to the east of Babylonia. It was once the name of Hindustan, when the dark races, worshippers of Bala-Mahadeva and Bhavani-Mahidevi, were supreme in that country. The India of the early sages appears to have been the region at the sources of the Oxus and Jaxartes. Apollonius of Tyana crossed the Caucasus, or Hindu Kush, where he met with a king who directed him to the abode of the sages — perhaps the descendants of those whom Ammianus terms the "Brahmans of Upper India," and whom Hystaspes, the father of Darius (or more probably Darius Hystaspes himself) visited; and, having been instructed by them, infused their rites and ideas into the Magian observances. This narrative about Apollonius seems to indicate Kashmere as the country which he visited, and the Nagas — after their conversion to Buddhism — as his teachers. At this time Aryan India did not extend beyond the Punjab.
To our notion, the most baffling impediment in the way of ethnological progress has always been the triple progeny of Noah. In the attempt to reconcile postdiluvian races with a genealogical descent from Shem, Ham, and Japhet, the Christianesque Orientalists have set themselves a task impossible of accomplishment. The biblical Noachian ark has been a Procrustean bed to which they had to make everything fit. Attention has therefore been diverted from veritable sources of information as to the origin of man, and a purely local allegory mistaken for a historical record emanating from an inspired source. Strange and unfortunate choice! Out of all the sacred writings of all the branch nations, sprung from the primitive stock of mankind, Christianity must choose for its guidance the national records and scriptures of a people perhaps the least spiritual of the human family — the Semitic. A branch that has never been able to develop out of its numerous tongues a language capable of embodying ideas of a moral and intellectual world; whose form of expression and drift of thought could never soar higher than the purely sensual and terrestrial figures of speech; whose literature has left nothing original, nothing that was not borrowed from the Aryan thought; and whose science and philosophy are utterly wanting in those noble features which
characterize the highly spiritual and metaphysical systems of the Indo-European (Japetic) races.
Bunsen shows Khamism (the language of Egypt) as a very ancient deposit from Western Asia, containing the germs of the Semitic, and thus bearing "witness to the primitive cognate unity of the Semitic and Aryan races." We must remember, in this connection, that the peoples of Southwestern and Western Asia, including the Medes, were all Aryans. It is yet far from being proved who were the original and primitive masters of India. That this period is now beyond the reach of documentary history, does not preclude the probability of our theory that it was the mighty race of builders, whether we call them Eastern AEthiopians, or dark-skinned Aryans (the word meaning simply "noble warrior," a "brave"). They ruled supreme at one time over the whole of ancient India, enumerated later by Manu as the possession of those whom our scientists term the Sanscrit-speaking people.
These Hindus are supposed to have entered the country from the northwest; they are conjectured by some to have brought with them the Brahmanical religion, and the language of the conquerors was probably the Sanscrit. On these three meagre data our philologists have worked ever since the Hindustani and its immense Sanscrit literature was forcibly brought into notice by Sir William Jones — all the time with the three sons of Noah clinging around their necks. This is exact science, free from religious prejudices! Verily, ethnology would have been the gainer if this Noachian trio had been washed overboard and drowned before the ark reached land!
The AEthiopians are generally classed in the Semitic group; but we have to see how far they have a claim to such a classification. We will also consider how much they might have had to do with the Egyptian civilization, which, as a writer expresses it, seems referable in the same perfection to the earliest dates, and not to have had a rise and progress, as was the case with that of other peoples. For reasons that we will now adduce, we are prepared to maintain that Egypt owes her civilization, commonwealth and arts — especially the art of building, to pre-Vedic India, and that it was a colony of the dark-skinned Aryans, or those whom Homer and Herodotus term the eastern AEthiopians, i.e., the inhabitants of Southern India, who brought to it their ready-made civilization in the ante-chronological ages, of what Bunsen calls the pre-Menite, but nevertheless epochal history.
In Pococke's India in Greece, we find the following suggestive paragraph: "The plain account of the wars carried on between the solar chiefs, Oosras (Osiris) the prince of the Guclas, and 'Tu-phoo' is the simple historical fact of the wars of the Apians, or Sun-tribes of Oude,
with the people of 'Tu-phoo' or Thibet, who were, in fact, the lunar race, mostly Buddhists* and opposed by Rama and the 'Aityo-Pias' or people of Oude, subsequently the Aith-io-pians of Africa."†
We would remind the reader in this connection, that Ravan, the giant, who, in the Ramayana, wages such a war with Rama Chandra, is shown as King of Lanka, which was the ancient name for Ceylon; and that Ceylon, in those days, perhaps formed part of the main-land of Southern India, and was peopled by the "Eastern AEthiopians." Conquered by Rama, the son of Dasarata, the Solar King of ancient Oude, a colony of these emigrated to Northern Africa. If, as many suspect, Homer's Iliad and much of his account of the Trojan war is plagiarized from the Ramayana, then the traditions which served as a basis for the latter must date from a tremendous antiquity. Ample margin is thus left in pre-chronological history for a period, during which the "Eastern AEthiopians" might have established the hypothetical Mizraic colony, with their high Indian civilization and arts.
Science is still in the dark about cuneiform inscriptions. Until these are completely deciphered, especially those cut in rocks found in such abundance within the boundaries of the old Iran, who can tell the secrets they may yet reveal? There are no Sanscrit monumental inscriptions older than Chandragupta (315 B.C.), and the Persepolitan inscriptions are found 220 years older. There are even now some manuscripts in characters utterly unknown to philologists and palaeographists, and one of them is, or was, some time since in the library of Cambridge, England. Linguistic writers class the Semitic with the Indo-European language, generally including the AEthiopian and the ancient Egyptian in the classification. But if some of the dialects of the modern Northern Africa, and even the modern Gheez or AEthiopian, are now so degenerated and corrupted as to admit of false conclusions as to the genetical relationship between them and the other Semitic tongues, we are not at all sure that the latter have any claim to such a classification, except in the case of the old Coptic and the ancient Gheez.
That there is more consanguinity between the AEthiopians and the Aryan, dark-skinned races, and between the latter and the Egyptians, is something which yet may be proved. It has been lately found that the ancient Egyptians were of the Caucasian type of mankind, and the
shape of their skulls is purely Asiatic.* If they were less copper-colored than the AEthiopians of our modern day, the AEthiopians themselves might have had a lighter complexion in days of old. The fact that, with the AEthiopian kings, the order of succession gave the crown to the nephew of the king, the son of his sister, and not to his own son, is extremely suggestive. It is an old custom which prevails until now in Southern India. The Rajah is not succeeded by his own sons, but by his sister's sons.†
Of all the dialects and tongues alleged to be Semitic, the AEthiopian alone is written from left to right like the Sanscrit and the Indo-Aryan people.‡
Thus, against the origin of the Egyptians being attributed to an ancient Indian colony, there is no graver impediment than Noah's disrespectful son — Ham — himself a myth. But the earliest form of Egyptian religious worship and government, theocratic and sacerdotal, and her habits and customs all bespeak an Indian origin.
The earliest legends of the history of India mention two dynasties now lost in the night of time; the first was the dynasty of kings, of "the race of the sun," who reigned in Ayodhia (now Oude); the second that of the
"race of the moon," who reigned in Pruyag (Allahabad). Let him who desires information on the religious worship of these early kings read the Book of the Dead, of the Egyptians, and all the peculiarities attending this sun-worship and the sun-gods. Neither Osiris nor Horus are ever mentioned without being connected with the sun. They are the "Sons of the Sun";"the Lord and Adorer of the Sun" is his name. "The sun is the creator of the body, the engenderer of the gods who are the successors of the Son." Pococke, in his most ingenious work, strongly advocates the same idea, and endeavors to establish still more firmly the identity of the Egyptian, Greek, and Indian mythology. He shows the head of the Rajpoot Solar race — in fact the great Cuclo-pos (Cyclop or builder) — called "The great sun," in the earliest Hindu tradition. This Gok-la Prince, the patriarch of the vast bands of Inachienses, he says, "this Great Sun was deified at his death, and according to the Indian doctrine of the metempsychosis, his Soul was supposed to have transmigrated into the bull 'Apis,' the Sera-pis of the Greeks, and the Soorapas, or 'Sun-Chief' of the Egyptians. . . . Osiris, properly Oosras, signifies both 'a bull,' and 'a ray of light.' Soora-pas (Serapis) the sun chief," for the Sun in Sanscrit is Surya. Champollion's Manifestation to the Light, reminds in every chapter of the two Dynasties of the Kings of the Sun and the Moon. Later, these kings became all deified and transformed after death into solar and lunar deities. Their worship was the earliest corruption of the great primitive faith which justly considered the sun and its fiery life-giving rays as the most appropriate symbol to remind us of the universal invisible presence of Him who is master of Life and Death. And now it can be traced all around the globe. It was the religion of the earliest Vedic Brahmans, who call, in the oldest hymns of the Rig-Veda, Surya (the sun) and Agni (fire) "the ruler of the universe," "the lord of men," and the "wise king." It was the worship of the Magians, the Zoroastrians, the Egyptians and Greeks, whether they called him Mithra, or Ahura-Mazda, or Osiris, or Zeus, keeping in honor of his next of kin, Vesta, the pure celestial fire. And this religion is found again in the Peruvian solar-worship; in the Sabianism and heliolatry of the Chaldees, in the Mosaic "burning bush," the hanging of the heads or chiefs of the people toward the Lord, the "Sun," and even in the Abrahamic building of fire-altars and the sacrifices of the monotheistic Jews, to Astarte the Queen of Heaven.
To the present moment, with all the controversies and researches, History and Science remain as much as ever in the dark as to the origin of the Jews. They may as well be the exiled Tchandalas, or Pariahs, of old India, the "bricklayers" mentioned by Vina-Svati, Veda-Vyasa and Manu, as the Phoenicians of Herodotus, or the Hyk-sos of Josephus, or
descendants of Pali shepherds, or a mixture of all these. The Bible names the Tyrians as a kindred people, and claims dominion over them.*
There is more than one important character in the Bible, whose biography proves him a mythical hero. Samuel is indicated as the personage of the Hebrew Commonwealth. He is the doppel of Samson, of the Book of Judges, as will be seen — being the son of Anna and El-Kaina, as Samson was of Manua or Manoah. Both were fictitious characters, as now represented in the revealed book; one was the Hebrew Hercules, and the other Ganesa. Samuel is credited with establishing the republic, as putting down the Canaanite worship of Baal and Astarte, or Adonis and Venus, and setting up that of Jehovah. Then the people demanded a king, and he anointed Saul, and after him David of Bethlehem.
David is the Israelitish King Arthur. He did great achievements and established a government in all Syria and Idumea. His dominion extended from Armenia and Assyria on the north and north-east, the Syrian Desert and Persian Gulf on the East, Arabia on the south, and Egypt and the Levant on the west. Only Phoenicia was excepted.
His friendship with Hiram seems to indicate that he made his first expedition from that country into Judea; and his long residence at Hebron, the city of the Kabeiri (Arba or four), would seem likewise to imply that he established a new religion in the country.
After David came Solomon, powerful and luxurious, who sought to consolidate the dominion which David had won. As David was a Jehovah-worshipper, a temple of Jehovah (Tukt Suleima) was built in Jerusalem, while shrines of Moloch-Hercules, Khemosh, and Astarte were erected on Mount Olivet. These shrines remained till Josiah.
There were conspiracies formed. Revolts took place in Idumea and Damascus; and Ahijah the prophet led the popular movement which resulted in deposing the house of David and making Jeroboam king. Ever after the prophets dominated in Israel, where the calf-worship prevailed; the priests ruled over the weak dynasty of David, and the lasci-
vious local worship existed over the whole country. After the destruction of the house of Ahab, and the failure of Jehu and his descendants to unite the country under one head, the endeavor was made in Judah. Isaiah had terminated the direct line in the person of Ahaz (Isaiah vii. 9), and placed on the throne a prince from Bethlehem (Micah v. 2, 5). This was Hezekiah. On ascending the throne, he invited the chiefs of Israel to unite in alliance with him against Assyria (2 Chronicles, xxx. 1, 21; xxxi. 1, 5; 2Kings, xviii. 7). He seems to have established a sacred college (Proverbs xxv. 1), and to have utterly changed the worship. Aye, even unto breaking into pieces the brazen serpent that Moses had made.
This makes the story of Samuel and David and Solomon mythical. Most of the prophets who were literate seem to have begun about this time to write.
The country was finally overthrown by the Assyrians, who found the same people and institutions as in the Phoenician and other countries.
Hezekiah was not the lineal, but the titular son of Ahaz. Isaiah, the prophet, belonged to the royal family, and Hezekiah was reputed his son-in-law. Ahaz refused to ally himself with the prophet and his party, saying: "I will not tempt (depend on) the Lord" (Isaiah vii. 12). The prophet had declared: "If you will not believe, surely you shall not be established" — foreshadowing the deposition of his direct language. "Ye weary my God," replied the prophet, and predicted the birth of a child by an alma, or temple-woman, and that before it should attain full age (Hebrews v. 14; Isaiah vii. 16; viii. 4), the king of Assyria should overcome Syria and Israel. This is the prophecy which Irenaeus took such pains to connect with Mary and Jesus, and made the reason why the mother of the Nazarene prophet is represented as belonging to the temple, and consecrated to God from her infancy.
In a second song, Isaiah celebrated the new chief, to sit on the throne of David (ix. 6, 7; xi. 1), who should restore to their homes the Jews whom the confederacy had led captive (Isaiah viii. 2-12; Joel iii. 1-7; Obadiah 7, 11, 14). Micah — his contemporary — also announced the same event (iv. 7-13; v. 1-7). The Redeemer was to come out of Bethlehem; in other words, was of the house of David; and was to resist Assyria to whom Ahaz had sworn allegiance, and also to reform religion (2 Kings, xviii. 4-8). This Hezekiah did. He was grandson of Zechariah the seer (2 Chronicles, xxix. 1; xxvi. 5), the counsellor of Uzziah; and as soon as he ascended the throne he restored the religion of David, and destroyed the last vestiges of that of Moses, i.e., the esoteric doctrine, declaring "our fathers have trespassed" (2 Chron., xxix. 6-9). He next attempted a reunion with the northern monarchy,
there being an interregnum in Israel (2 Chron., xxx. 1, 2, 6; xxxi. 1, 6, 7). It was successful, but resulted in an invasion by the king of Assyria. But it was a new regime; and all this shows the course of two parallel streams in the religious worship of the Israelites; one belonging to the state religion and adopted to fit political exigencies; the other pure idolatry, resulting from ignorance of the true esoteric doctrine preached by Moses. For the first time since Solomon built them "the high places were taken away."
It was Hezekiah who was the expected Messiah of the exoteric state-religion. He was the scion from the stem of Jesse, who should recall the Jews from a deplorable captivity, about which the Hebrew historians seem to be very silent, carefully avoiding all mention of this particular fact, but which the irascible prophets imprudently disclose. If Hezekiah crushed the exoteric Baal-worship, he also tore violently away the people of Israel from the religion of their fathers, and the secret rites instituted by Moses.
It was Darius Hystaspes who was the first to establish a Persian colony in Judea, Zoro-Babel was perhaps the leader. "The name Zoro-babel means 'the seed or son of Babylon' — as Zoro-aster is the seed, son, or prince of Ishtar."* The new colonists were doubtless Judaei. This is a designation from the East. Even Siam is called Judia, and there was an Ayodia in India. The temples of Solom or Peace were numerous. Throughout Persia and Afghanistan the names of Saul and David are very common. The "Law" is ascribed in turn to Hezekiah, Ezra, Simon the Just, and the Asmonean period. Nothing definite; everywhere contradictions. When the Asmonean period began, the chief supporters of the Law were called Asideans or Khasdim (Chaldeans), and afterward Pharisees or Pharsi (Parsis). This indicates that Persian colonies were established in Judea and ruled the country; while all the people that are mentioned in the books of Genesis and Joshua lived there as a commonalty (see Ezra ix. 1).
There is no real history in the Old Testament, and the little historical information one can glean is only found in the indiscreet revelations of the prophets. The book, as a whole, must have been written at various times, or rather invented as an authorization of some subsequent worship, the origin of which may be very easily traced partially to the Orphic Mysteries, and partially to the ancient Egyptian rites in familiarity with which Moses was brought up from his infancy.
Since the last century the Church has been gradually forced into concessions of usurped biblical territory to those to whom it of right belonged.
Inch by inch has been yielded, and one personage after another been proved mythical and Pagan. But now, after the recent discovery of George Smith, the much-regretted Assyriologist, one of the securest props of the Bible has been pulled down. Sargon and his tablets are about demonstrated to be older than Moses. Like the account of Exodus, the birth and story of the lawgiver seem to have been "borrowed" from the Assyrians, as the "jewels of gold and jewels of silver" were said to be from the Egyptians.
On page 224 of Assyrian Discoveries, Mr. George Smith says: "In the palace of Sennacherib at Kouyunjik, I found another fragment of the curious history of Sargon, a translation of which I published in the Transactions of the Society of Biblical Archaeology, vol. i., part i., page 46. This text relates that Sargon, an early Babylonian monarch, was born of royal parents, but concealed by his mother, who placed him on the Euphrates in an ark of rushes, coated with bitumen, like that in which the mother of Moses hid her child (see Exodus ii.). Sargon was discovered by a man named Akki, a water-carrier, who adopted him as his son; and he afterward became King of Babylonia. The capital of Sargon was the great city of Agadi — called by the Semites Akkad — mentioned in Genesis as a capital of Nimrod (Genesis x. l0), and here he reigned for forty-five years.* Akkad lay near the city of Sippara,†on the Euphrates and north of Babylon. "The date of Sargon, who may be termed the Babylonian Moses, was in the sixteenth century and perhaps earlier."
G. Smith adds in his Chaldean Account that Sargon I. was a Babylonian monarch who reigned in the city of Akkad about 1600 B.C. The name of Sargon signifies the right, true, or legitimate king. This curious story is found on fragments of tablets from Kouyunjik, and reads as follows:
1. Sargona, the powerful king, the king of Akkad am I.
2. My mother was a princess, my father I did not know, a brother of my father ruled over the country.
3. In the city of Azupirana, which is by the side of the river Euphrates,
4. My mother, the princess, conceived me; in difficulty she brought me forth.
5. She placed me in an ark of rushes, with bitumen my exit she sealed up.
6. She launched me in the river which did not drown me.
7. The river carried me to Akki, the water-carrier it brought me.
8. Akki, the water-carrier, in tenderness of bowels, lifted me, etc., etc.
And now Exodus (ii.): "And when she (Moses' mother) could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein, and she laid it in the flags by the river's brink."
The story, says Mr. G. Smith, "is supposed to have happened about 1600 B.C., rather earlier than the supposed age of Moses* as we know that the fame of Sargon reached Egypt, it is quite likely that this account had a connection with the event related in Exodus ii., for every action, when once performed, has a tendency to be repeated."
The "ages" of the Hindus differ but little from those of the Greeks, Romans, and even the Jews. We include the Mosaic computation advisedly, and with intent to prove our position. The chronology which separates Moses from the creation of the world by only four generations seems ridiculous, merely because the Christian clergy would enforce it upon the world literally.† The kabalists know that these generations stand for ages of the world. The allegories which, in the Hindu calculations, embrace the whole stupendous sweep of the four ages, are cunningly made in the Mosaic books, through the obliging help of the Masorah, to cram into the small period of two millenniums and a half (2513)!
The exoteric plan of the Bible was made to answer also to four ages. Thus, they reckon the Golden Age from Adam to Abraham; the silver, from Abraham to David; copper, from David to the Captivity; thenceforward, the iron. But the secret computation is quite different, and does not vary at all from the zodiacal calculations of the Brahmans. We are in the Iron Age, or Kali-Yug, but it began with Noah, the mythical ancestor of our race.
Noah, or Nuah, like all the euhemerized manifestations of the Unrevealed One — Swayambhuva (or Swayambhu), was androgyne. Thus, in
some instances, he belonged to the purely feminine triad of the Chaldeans, known as "Nuah, the universal Mother." We have shown, in another chapter, that every male triad had its feminine counterpart, one in three, like the former. It was the passive complement of the active principle, its reflection. In India, the male trimurty is reproduced in the Sakti-trimurti, the feminine; and in Chaldea, Ana, Belita and Davkina answered to Anu, Bel, Nuah. The former three resumed in one — Belita, were called:
"Sovereign goddess, lady of the nether abyss, mother of gods, queen of the earth, queen of fecundity."
As the primordial humidity, whence proceeded all, Belita is Tamti, or the sea, the mother of the city of Erech (the great Chaldean necropolis), therefore, an infernal goddess. In the world of stars and planets she is known as Istar or Astoreth. Hence, she is identical with Venus, and every other queen of heaven, to whom cakes and buns were offered in sacrifice,* and, as all the archaeologists know, with Eve, the mother of all that live, and with Mary.
The Ark, in which are preserved the germs of all living things necessary to repeople the earth, represents the survival of life, and the supremacy of spirit over matter, through the conflict of the opposing powers of nature. In the Astro-Theosophic chart of the Western Rite, the Ark corresponds with the navel, and is placed at the sinister side, the side of the woman (the moon), one of whose symbols is the left pillar of Solomon's temple — Boaz. The umbilicus is connected with the receptacle in which are fructified the germs of the race.† The Ark is the sacred Argha of the Hindus, and thus, the relation in which it stands to Noah's ark may be easily inferred, when we learn that the Argha was an oblong vessel, used by the high priests as a sacrificial chalice in the worship of Isis, Astarte, and Venus-Aphrodite, all of whom were goddesses of the generative powers of nature, or of matter — hence, representing symbolically the Ark containing the germs of all living things.
We admit that Pagans had and now have — as in India — strange symbols, which, to the eyes of the hypocrite and Puritan, seem scandalously
immoral. But did not the ancient Jews copy most of these symbols? We have described elsewhere the identity of the lingham with Jacob's pillar, and we could give a number of instances from the present Christian rites, bearing the same origin, did but space permit, and were not all these noticed fully by Inman and others (See Inman's Ancient Faiths Embodied in Ancient Names).
Describing the worship of the Egyptians, Mrs. Lydia Maria Child says: "This reverence for the production of life, introduced into the worship of Osiris, the sexual emblems so common in Hindustan. A colossal image of this kind was presented to his temple in Alexandria, by King Ptolemy Philadelphus. . . . Reverence for the mystery of organized life led to the recognition of a masculine and feminine principle in all things, spiritual or material. . . . The sexual emblems, everywhere conspicuous in the sculptures of their temples, would seem impure in description, but no clean and thoughtful mind could so regard them while witnessing the obvious simplicity and solemnity with which the subject is treated."*
Thus speaks this respected lady and admirable writer, and no truly pure man or woman would ever think of blaming her for it. But such a perversion of the ancient thought is but natural in an age of cant and prudery like our own.
The water of the flood when standing in the allegory for the symbolic "sea," Tamti, typifies the turbulent chaos, or matter, called "the great dragon." According to the Gnostic and Rosicrucian medaeival doctrine, the creation of woman was not originally intended. She is the offspring of man's own impure fancy, and, as the Hermetists say, "an obtrusion." Created by an unclean thought she sprang into existence at the evil "seventh hour," when the "supernatural" real worlds had passed away and the "natural" or delusive worlds began evolving along the "descending Microcosmos," or the arc of the great cycle, in plainer phraseology. First "Virgo," the Celestial Virgin of the Zodiac, she became "Virgo-Scorpio." But in evolving his second companion, man had unwittingly endowed her with his own share of Spirituality; and the new being whom his "imagination" had called into life became his "Saviour" from the snares of Eve-Lilith, the first Eve, who had a greater share of matter in her composition than the primitive "spiritual" man.†
Thus woman stands in the cosmogony in relation to "matter" or the great deep, as the "Virgin of the Sea," who crushes the "Dragon" under her foot. The "Flood" is also very often shown, in symbolical phraseology, as the "great Dragon." For one acquainted with these tenets it becomes more than suggestive to learn that with the Catholics the Virgin Mary is not only the accepted patroness of Christian sailors, but also the "Virgin of the Sea." So was Dido the patroness of the Phoenician mariners;* and together with Venus and other lunar goddesses — the moon having such a strong influence over the tides — was the "Virgin of the Sea." Mar, the Sea, is the root of the name Mary. The blue color, which was with the ancients symbolical of the "Great Deep" or the material world, hence — of evil, is made sacred to our "Blessed Lady." It is the color of "Notre Dame de Paris." On account of its relation to the symbolical serpent this color is held in the deepest aversion by the ex-Nazarenes, disciples of John the Baptist, now the Mendaeans of Basra.
Among the beautiful plates of Maurice, there is one representing Christna crushing the head of the Serpent. A three-peaked mitre is on his head (typifying the trinity), and the body and tail of the conquered serpent encircles the figure of the Hindu god. This plate shows whence proceeded the inspiration for the "make up" of a later story extracted from an alleged prophecy. "I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel."
The Egyptian Orante is also shown with his arms extended as on a crucifix, and treading upon the "Serpent"; and Horus (the Logos) is represented piercing the head of the dragon, Typhon or Aphophis. All this gives us a clew to the biblical allegory of Cain and Abel. Cain was held as the ancestor of the Hivites, the Serpents, and the twins of Adam are an evident copy from the fable of Osiris and Typhon. Apart from the external form of the allegory, however, it embodied the philosophical conception of the eternal struggle of good and evil.
But how strangely elastic, how adaptable to any and every thing this mystical philosophy proved after the Christian era! When were ever facts, irrefutable, irrefragable, and beyond denial, less potential for the reestablishment of truth than in our century of casuistry and Christian cunning? Is Christna proved to have been known as the "Good Shep-
herd" ages before the year A.D. 1, to have crushed the Serpent Kalinaga, and to have been crucified — all this was but a prophetic foreshadowing of the future! Are the Scandinavian Thor, who bruised the head of the Serpent with his cruciform mace, and Apollo, who killed Python, likewise shown to present the most striking similarities with the heroes of the Christian fables; they become but original conceptions of "heathen" minds, "working upon the old Patriarchal prophecies respecting the Christ, as they were contained in the one universal and primeval Revelation"!*
The flood, then, is the "Old Serpent" or the great deep of matter, Isaiah's "dragon in the sea" (xxvii. 1), over which the ark safely crosses on its way to the mount of Salvation. But, if we have heard of the ark and Noah, and the Bible at all, it is because the mythology of the Egyptians was ready at hand for Moses (if Moses ever wrote any of the Bible), and that he was acquainted with the story of Horus, standing on his boat of a serpentine form, and killing the Serpent with his spear; and with the hidden meaning of these fables, and their real origin. This is also why we find in Leviticus, and other parts of his books, whole pages of laws identical with those of Manu.
The animals shut up in the ark are the human passions. They typify certain ordeals of initiation, and the mysteries which were instituted among many nations in commemoration of this allegory. Noah's ark rested on the seventeenth of the seventh month. Here we have again the number; as also in the "clean beasts" that he took by sevens into the ark. Speaking of the water-mysteries of Byblos, Lucian says: "On the top of one of the two pillars which Bacchus set up, a man remains seven days."† He supposes this was done to honor Deukalion. Elijah, when praying on the top of Mount Carmel, sends his servant to look for a cloud toward the sea, and repeats, "go again seven times. And it came to pass at the seventh time, behold there arose a little cloud out of the sea like a man's hand."‡
"Noah is a revolutio of Adam, as Moses is a revolutio of Abel and Seth," says the Kabala; that is to say, a repetition or another version of the same story. The greatest proof of it is the distribution of the characters in the Bible. For instance, beginning with Cain, the first murderer, every fifth man in his line of descent is a murderer. Thus there come Enoch, Irad, Mehujael, Methuselah, and the fifth is Lamech, the second
murderer, and he is Noah's father. By drawing the five-pointed star of Lucifer (which has its crown-point downward) and writing the name of Cain beneath the lowest point, and those of his descendants successively at each of the other points, it will be found that each fifth name — which would be written beneath that of Cain — is that of a murderer. In the Talmud this genealogy is given complete, and thirteen murderers range themselves in line below the name of Cain. This is no coincidence. Siva is the Destroyer, but he is also the Regenerator. Cain is a murderer, but he is also the creator of nations, and an inventor. This star of Lucifer is the same one that John sees falling down to earth in his Apocalypse.
In Thebes, or Theba, which means ark — TH-ABA being synonymous with Kartha or Tyre, Astu or Athens and Urbs or Rome, and meaning also the city — are found the same foliations as described on the pillars of the temple of Solomon. The bicolored leaf of the olive, the three-lobed figleaf, and the lanceolate-shaped laurel-leaf, had all esoteric as well as popular or vulgar meanings with the ancients.
The researches of Egyptologists present another corroboration of the identity of the Bible-allegories with those of the lands of the Pharaohs and Chaldeans. The dynastic chronology of the Egyptians, recorded by Herodotus, Manetho, Eratosthenes, Diodorus Siculus, and accepted by our antiquarians, divided the period of Egyptian history under four general heads: the dominion of gods, demi-gods, heroes, and mortal men. By combining the demi-gods and heroes into one class, Bunsen reduces the periods to three: the ruling gods, the demi-gods or heroes — sons of gods, but born of mortal mothers — and the Manes, who were the ancestors of individual tribes. These subdivisions, as any one may perceive, correspond perfectly with the biblical Elohim, sons of God, giants, and mortal Noachian men.
Diodorus of Sicily and Berosus give us the names of the twelve great gods who presided over the twelve months of the year and the twelve signs of the zodiac. These names, which include Nuah,* are too well known to require repetition. The double-faced Janus was also at the head of twelve gods, and in his representations of him he is made to hold the keys to the celestial domains. All these having served as models for the biblical patriarchs, have done still further service — especially Janus — by furnishing copy to St. Peter and his twelve apostles, the
former also double-faced in his denial, and also represented as holding the keys of Paradise.
This statement that the story of Noah is but another version in its hidden meaning of the story of Adam and his three sons, gathers proof on every page of the book of Genesis. Adam is the prototype of Noah. Adam falls because he eats of the forbidden fruit of celestial knowledge; Noah, because he tastes of the terrestrial fruit: the juice of the grape representing the abuse of knowledge in an unbalanced mind. Adam gets stripped of his spiritual envelope; Noah of his terrestrial clothing; and the nakedness of both makes them feel ashamed. The wickedness of Cain is repeated in Ham. But the descendants of both are shown as the wisest of races on earth; and they are called on this account "snakes," and the "sons of snakes," meaning the sons of wisdom, and not of Satan, as some divines would be pleased to have the world understand the term. Enmity has been placed between the "snake" and the "woman" only in this mortal phenomenal "world of man" as "born of woman." Before the carnal fall, the "snake" was Ophis, the divine wisdom, which needed no matter to procreate men, humanity being utterly spiritual. Hence the war between the snake and the woman, or between spirit and matter. If, in its material aspect, the "old serpent" is matter, and represents Ophiomorphos, in its spiritual meaning it becomes Ophis-Christos. In the magic of the old Syro-Chaldeans both are conjoint in the zodiacal sign of the androgyne of Virgo-Scorpio, and may be divided or separated whenever needed. Thus as the origin of "good and evil," the meaning of the S.S. and Z.Z. has always been interchangeable; and if upon some occasions the S.S. on sigils and talismans are suggestive of serpentine evil influence and denote a design of black magic upon others, the double S.S. are found on the sacramental cups of the Church and mean the presence of the Holy Ghost, or pure wisdom.
The Midianites were known as the wise men, or sons of snakes, as well as Canaanites and Hamites; and such was the renown of the Midianites, that we find Moses, the prophet, led on, and inspired by "the Lord," humbling himself before Hobab, the son of Raguel, the Midianite, andbeseeching him to remain with the people of Israel: "Leave us not, I pray thee; forasmuch as thou knowest how we are to encamp in the wilderness, thou mayest be to us instead of eyes."* Further, when Moses sends spies to search out the land of Canaan, they bring as a proof of the wisdom (kabalistically speaking) and goodness of the land, a branch with one cluster of grapes, which they are compelled to bear between two men on a staff. Moreover, they add: "we saw the children of Anak there."
They are the giants, the sons of Anak, "which come of the giants,* and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers, and so we were in their sight."†
Anak is Enoch, the patriarch, who dies not, and who is the first possessor of the "mirific name," according to the Kabala, and the ritual of Freemasonry.
Comparing the biblical patriarchs with the descendants of Vaiswasvata, the Hindu Noah, and the old Sanscrit traditions about the deluge in the Brahmanical Mahabharata, we find them mirrored in the Vaidic patriarchs who are the primitive types upon which all the others were modelled. But before comparison is possible, the Hindu myths must be comprehended in their true significance. Each of these mythical personages bears, besides an astronomical significance, a spiritual or moral, and an anthropological or physical meaning. The patriarchs are not only euhemerized gods — the prediluvian answering to the twelve great gods of Berosus, and to the ten Pradjapati, and the postdiluvian to the seven gods of the famous tablet in the Ninevean Library, but they stand also as the symbols of the Greek AEons, the kabalistic Sephiroth, and the zodiacal signs, as types of a series of human races.‡ This variation from ten to twelve will be accounted for presently, and proved on the very authority
of the Bible. Only, they are not the first gods described by Cicero,* which belong to a hierarchy of higher powers, the Elohim — but appertain rather to the second class of the "twelve gods," the Dii minores, and who are the terrestrial reflections of the first, among whom Herodotus places Hercules.† Alone, out of the group of twelve, Noah, by reason of his position at the transitional point, belongs to the highest Babylonian triad, Noah, the spirit of the waters. The rest are identical with the inferior gods of Assyria and Babylonia, who represented the lower order of emanations, introduced around Bel, the Demiurge, and help him in his work, as the patriarchs are shown to assist Jehovah — the "Lord God."
Besides these, many of which were local gods, the protecting deities of rivers and cities, there were the four classes of genius, we see Ezekiel making them support the throne of Jehovah in his vision. A fact which, if it identifies the Jewish "Lord God" with one of the Babylonian trinity, connects, at the same time, the present Christian God with the same triad, inasmuch as it is these four cherubs, if the reader will remember, on which Irenaeus makes Jesus ride, and which are shown as the companions of the evangelists.
The Hindu kabalistic derivation of the books of Ezekiel andRevelation are shown in nothing more plainly than in this description of the four beasts, which typify the four elementary kingdoms — earth, air, fire, and water. As is well known, they are the Assyrian sphinxes, but these figures are also carved on the walls of nearly every Hindu pagoda.
The author of the Revelation copies faithfully in his text (see chap. iv., verse 7) the Pythagorean pentacle, of which Levi's admirable sketch is reproduced on page 452.
The Hindu goddess Adanari (or as it might be more properly written, Adonari, since the second a is pronounced almost like the English o) is represented as surrounded by the same figures. It fits exactly Ezekiel's "wheel of the Adonai," known as "the Cherub of Jeheskiel," and indicates, beyond question, the source from which the Hebrew seer drew his allegories. For convenience of comparison we have placed the figure in the pentacle. (See page 453.)
Above these beasts were the angels or spirits, divided in two groups: the Igili, or celestial beings, and the Am-anaki, or terrestrial spirits, the giants, children of Anak, of whom the spies complained to Moses.
The Kabbala Denudata gives to the kabalists a very clear, to the profane a very muddled account of permutations or substitutions of one person for another. So, for instance, it says, that "the scintilla" (spiritual spark or soul) of Abraham was taken from Michael, the chief
of the AEons, and highest emanation of the Deity; so high indeed that in the eyes of the Gnostics, Michael was identical with Christ. And yet Michael and Enoch are one and the same person. Both occupy the junction-point of the cross of the Zodiac as "man." The scintilla of Isaac was that of Gabriel, the chief of the angelic host, and the scintilla of Jacob was taken from Uriel, named "the fire of God"; the sharpest sighted spirit in all Heaven. Adam is not the Kadmon but Adam Primus, the Microprosopus. In one of his aspects the latter is Enoch,
the terrestrial patriarch and father of Methuselah. He that "walked with God" and "did not die" is the spiritual Enoch, who typified humanity, eternal in spirit and as eternal in flesh, though the latter does die. Death is but a new birth, and spirit is immortal; thus humanity can never die, for the Destroyer has become the Creator, Enoch is the type of the dual man, spiritual and terrestrial. Hence his place in the centre of the astronomical cross.
But was this idea original with the Hebrews? We think not. Every nation which had an astronomical system, and especially India, held the cross in the highest reverence, for it was the geometrical basis of the religious symbolism of their avatars; the manifestation of the Deity, or of the Creator in his creature man; of God in humanity and humanity in God, as spirits. The oldest monuments of Chaldea, Persia, and India disclose the double or eight-pointed cross. This symbol, which very naturally is found, like every other geometrical figure in nature, in plants as well as in the snowflakes, has led Dr. Lundy, in his super-Christian mysticism, to
name such cruciform flowers as form an eight-pointed star by the junction of the two crosses — "the Prophetic Star of the Incarnation, which joined heaven and earth, God and man together."* The latter sentence is perfectly expressed; only, the old kabalist axiom, "as above, so below," answers still better, as it discloses to us the same God for all humanity, not alone for the handful of Christians. It is the Mundane cross of Heaven repeated on earth by plants and dual man: the physical man superseding the "spiritual," at the junction-point of which stands the mythical Libra-Hermes-Enoch. The gesture of one hand pointing to Heaven, is balanced by the other pointing down to the earth; boundless generations below, boundless regenerations above; the visible but the manifestation of the invisible; the man of dust abandoned to dust, the man of spirit reborn in spirit; thus it is finite humanity which is the Son of the Infinite God. Abba — the Father; Amoria — the Mother; the Son, the Universe. This primitive triad is repeated in all the tbeogonies. Adam Kadmon, Hermes, Enoch, Osiris, Christna, Ormazd, or Christos are all one. They stand as Metatrons between body and soul — eternal spirits which redeem flesh by the regeneration of flesh below, and soul by the regeneration above, where humanity walks once more with God.
We have shown elsewhere that the symbol of the cross or Egyptian Tau, , was by many ages earlier than the period assigned to Abraham, the alleled forefather of the Israelites, for otherwise Moses could not have learned it of the priests. And that the Tau was held as sacred by the Jews as by other "Pagan" nations is proved by a fact admitted now by Christian divines as well as by infidel archeologists. Moses, in Exodus xii. 22, orders his people to mark their door-posts and lintels with blood, lest the "Lord God" should make a mistake and smite some of his chosen people, instead of the doomed Egyptians.† And this mark is a tau! The identical Egyptian handled cross, with the half of which talisman Horus raised the dead, as is shown on a sculptured ruin at Philae.‡ How gratuitous is the idea that all such crosses and symbols were so many unconscious prophecies of Christ, is fully exemplified in the case of the Jews upon whose accusation Jesus was put to death. For instance, the same learned author remarks in Monumental Christianity that "the Jews themselves acknowledged this sign of salvation until they rejected
Christ"; and in another place he asserts that the rod of Moses, used in his miracles before Pharaoh, "was, no doubt, this crux ansata, or something like it, also used by the Egyptian priests."* Thus the logical inference would be, that 1, if the Jews worshipped the same symbols as the Pagans, then they were no better than they; and 2, if, being so well versed as they were in the hidden symbolism of the cross, in the face of their having waited for centuries for the Messiah, they yet rejected both the Christian Messiah and Christian Cross, then there must have been something wrong about both.
Those who "rejected" Jesus as the "Son of God," were neither the people ignorant of religious symbols, nor the handful of atheistical Sadducees who put him to death; but the very men who were instructed in the secret wisdom, who knew the origin as well as the meaning of the cruciform symbol, and who put aside both the Christian emblem and the Saviour suspended from it, because they could not be parties to such a blasphemous imposition upon the common people.
Nearly all the prophecies about Christ are credited to the patriarchs and prophets. If a few of the latter may have existed as real personages, every one of the former is a myth. We will endeavor to prove it by the hidden interpretation of the Zodiac, and the relations of its signs to these antediluvian men.
If the reader will keep in mind the Hindu ideas of cosmogony, as given in chapter vi., he will better understand the relation between the biblical antediluvian patriarchs, and that puzzle of commentators — "Ezekiel's wheel." Thus, be it remembered 1, that the universe is not a spontaneous creation, but an evolution from pre-existent matter; 2, that it is only one of an endless series of universes; 3, that eternity is pointed off into grand cycles, in each of which twelve transformations of our world occur, following its partial destruction by fire and water, alternately. So that when a new minor period sets in, the earth is so changed, even geologically, as to be practically a new world; 4, that of these twelve transformations, the earth after each of the first six is grosser, and everything on it — man included — more material, than after the preceding one: while after each of the remaining six the contrary is true, both earth and man growing more and more refined and spiritual with each terrestrial change; 5, that when the apex of the cycle is reached, a gradual dissolution takes place, and every living and objective form is destroyed. But when that point is reached, humanity has become fitted to live subjectively as well as objectively. And not humanity alone, but also ani-
mals, plants, and every atom. After a time of rest, say the Buddhists, when a new world becomes self-formed, the astral souls of animals, and of all beings, except such as have reached the highest Nirvana; will return on earth again to end their cycles of transformations, and become men in their turn.
This stupendous conception, the ancients synthesized for the instruction of the common people, into a single pictorial design — the Zodiac, or celestial belt. Instead of the twelve signs now used, there were originally but ten known to the general public, viz.: Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, Virgo-Scorpio, Sagittarius, Capricornus, Aquarius, and Pisces.* These were exoteric. But in addition there were two mystical signs inserted, which none but initiates comprehended, viz.: at the middle or junction-point where now stands Libra, and at the sign now called Scorpio, which follows Virgo. When it was found necessary to make them exoteric, these two secret signs were added under their present appellations as blinds to conceal the true names which gave the key to the whole secret of creation, and divulged the origin of "good and evil."
The true Sabean astrological doctrine secretly taught that within this double sign was hidden the explanation of the gradual transformation of the world, from its spiritual and subjective, into the "two-sexed" sublunary state. The twelve signs were therefore divided into two groups. The first six were called the ascending, or the line of Macrocosm (the great spiritual world); the last six, the descending line, or the Microcosm (the little secondary world) — the mere reflection of the former, so to say. This division was called Ezekiel's wheel, and was completed in the following way: First came the ascending five signs (euphemerized into patriarchs), Aries, Taurus, Gemini, Cancer, Leo, and the group concluded with Virgo-Scorpio. Then came the turning-point, Libra. After which, the first half of the sign Virgo-Scorpio, was duplicated and transferred to lead the lower, or descending group of Microcosm which ran down to Pisces, or Noah (deluge). To make it clearer, the sign Virgo-Scorpio, which appeared originally thus , became simply Virgo, and the duplication, , or Scorpio, was placed between Libra, the seventh sign (which is Enoch, or the angel Metatron, or Mediator between spirit and matter, or God and man). It now became Scorpio (or Cain), which sign or patriarch led mankind to destruction, according
to exoteric theology; but, according to the true doctrine of the wisdom-religion, it indicated the degradation of the whole universe in its course of evolution downward from the subjective to the objective.
The sign of Libra is credited as a later invention by the Greeks, but it is not generally stated that those among them who were initiated had only made a change of names conveying the same idea as the secret name to those "who knew," leaving the masses as unwise as ever. Yet it was a beautiful idea of theirs, this Libra, or the balance, expressing as much as could possibly be done without unveiling the whole and ultimate truth. They intended it to imply that when the course of evolution had taken the worlds to the lowest point of grossness, where the earths and their products were coarsest, and their inhabitants most brutish, the turning-point had been reached — the forces were at an even balance. At the lowest point, the still lingering divine spark of spirit within began to convey the upward impulse. The scales typified that eternal equilibrium which is the necessity of a universe of harmony, of exact justice, of the balance of centripetal and centrifugal forces, darkness and light, spirit and matter.
These additional signs of the Zodiac warrant us in saying that the Book of Genesis as we now find it, must be of later date than the invention of Libra by the Greeks; for we find the chapters of the genealogies remodelled to fit the new Zodiac, instead of the latter being made to correspond with the list of patriarchs. And it is this addition and the necessity of concealing the true key, that led the Rabbinical compilers to repeat the names of Enoch and Lamech twice, as we see them now in the Kenite table. Alone, among all the books of the Bible, Genesis belongs to an immense antiquity. The others are all later additions, the earliest of which appeared with Hilkiah, who evidently concocted it with the help of Huldah, the prophetess.
As there is more than one meaning attached to the stories of the creation and deluge, we say, therefore, that the biblical account cannot be comprehended apart from the Babylonian story of the same; while neither will be thoroughly clear without the Brahmanical esoteric interpretation of the deluge, as found in the Mahabharata and the Satapatha-Brahmana. It is the Babylonians who were taught the "mysteries," the sacerdotal language, and their religion by the problematical Akkadians who — according to Rawlinson came from Armenia — not the former who emigrated to India. Here the evidence becomes clear. The Babylonian Xisuthrus is shown by Movers to have represented the "sun" in the Zodiac, in the sign of Aquarius, and Oannes, the man-fish, the semi-demon, is Vishnu in his first avatar; thus giving the key to the double source of the biblical revelation.
Oannes is the emblem of priestly, esoteric wisdom; he comes out from the sea, because the "great deep," the water, typifies, as we have shown, the secret doctrine. For this same reason Egyptians deified the Nile, apart from its being regarded, in consequence of its periodical overflows, as the "Saviour" of the country. They even held the crocodiles as sacred, from having their abode in the "deep." The "Hamites," so called, have always preferred to settle near rivers and oceans. Water was the first-created element, according to some old cosmogonies. This name of Oannes is held in the greatest reverence, in the Chaldean records. The Chaldean priests wore a head-gear like a fish's head, and a shadbelly coat, representing the body of a fish.*
"Thales," says Cicero, "assures that water is the principle of all things; and that God is that Mind which shaped and created all things from water."†
"In the Beginning, Spirit within strengthens Heaven and Earth,
The watery fields, and the lucid globe of Luna, and then —
Titan stars; and mind infused through the limbs
Agitates the whole mass, and mixes itself with great matter."‡
Thus water represents the duality of both the Macrocosmos and the Microcosmos, in conjunction with the vivifying spirit, and the evolution of the little world from the universal cosmos. The deluge then, in this sense, points to that final struggle between the conflicting elements, which brought the first great cycle of our planet to a close. These periods gradually merged into each other, order being brought out of chaos, or disorder, and the successive types of organism being evolved only as the physical conditions of nature were prepared for their appearance; for our present race could not have breathed on earth, during that intermediate period, not having as yet the allegorical coats of skin.§
In chapters iv. and v. of Genesis, we find the so-called generations of Cain and Seth. Let us glance at them in the order in which they stand:
Lines of Generations. Sethite.(Good Principle)1. Adam.2. Seth.3. Enos.4. Cainan.5. Mahalaleel.6. Jared.7. Enoch.8. Methuselah.9 . Lamech.10. Noah. Kenite.(Evil Principle)1. Adam.2. Cain.3. Enoch.4. Irad.5. Mehujael.6. Methusael.7. Lamech.8. Jubal.9. Jabal.10. Tubal Cain.
The above are the ten biblical patriarchs, identical with Hindu Pragapatis (Pradjapatis), and the Sephiroth of the Kabala. We say ten patriarchs, not twenty, for the Kenite line was devised for no other purpose than, 1, to carry out the idea of dualism, on which is founded the philosophy of every religion; for these two genealogical tables represent simply the opposing powers or principles of good and evil; and 2, as a blind for the uninitiated masses. Suppose we restore them to their primitive form, by erasing these premeditated blinds. These are so transparent as to require but a small amount of perspicacity to select, even though one should use only his unaided judgment, and were not, as we are, enabled to apply the test of the secret doctrine.
By ridding ourselves, therefore, of the Kenite names that are mere duplications of the Sethite, or of each other, we get rid of Adam; of Enoch — who, in one genealogy, is shown the father of Irad, and in the other, the son of Jared; of Lamech, son of Methusael, whereas he, Lamech, is son of Methuselah in the Sethite line; of Irad (Jared),* Jubal and Jabal, who, with Tubal-Cain, form a trinity in one, and that one the double of Cain; of Mehujael (who is but Mahalaleel differently spelled), and Methusael (Methuselah). This leaves us in the Kenite genealogy of chapter iv., one only, Cain, who — the first murderer and fra-
tricide — is made to stand in his line as father of Enoch, the most virtuous of men, who does not die, but is translated alive. Turn we now to the Sethite table, and we find that Enos, or Enoch, comes second from Adam, and is father to Cain (an). This is no accident. There was an evident reason for this inversion of paternity; a palpable design — that of creating confusion and baffling inquiry.
We say, then, that the patriarchs are simply the signs of the Zodiac, emblems, in their manifold aspects, of the spiritual and physical evolution of human races, of ages, and of divisions of time. In astrology, the first four of the "Houses," in the diagrams of the "Twelve Houses of Heaven" — namely, the first, tenth, seventh, and fourth, or the second inner square placed with its angles upward and downward, are termed angles, as being of the greatest strength and power. They answer to Adam, Noah, Cain-an, and Enoch, Alpha, Omega, evil and good, leading the whole. Furthermore, when divided (including the two secret names) into four trigons or triads, viz.: fiery, airy, earthy, and watery, we find the latter corresponding to Noah.
Enoch and Lamech were doubled in the table of Cain, to fill out the required number ten in both "generations" in the Bible, instead of employing the "Secret Name"; and, in order that the patriarchs should correspond with the ten kabalistic Sephiroth, and fit at the same time the ten, and, subsequently, twelve signs of the Zodiac, in a manner comprehensible only to the kabalists.
And now, Abel having disappeared out of that line of descent, he is replaced by Seth, who was clearly an afterthought suggested by the necessity of not having the human race descend entirely from a murderer. This dilemma being apparently first noticed when the Kenite table had been completed, Adam is made (after all the generations had appeared) to beget this son, Seth. It is a suggestive fact that, whereas the double-sexed Adam of chapter v. is made in the likeness of the Elohim (see Genesis chapter i. 27 and v. 1 of the same), Seth (v. 3) is begotten in Adam's "own likeness," thus signifying that there were men of different races. Also, it is most noticeable that neither the age nor a single other particular respecting the patriarchs in the Kenite table is given, whereas the reverse is the case with those in the Sethite line.
Most assuredly, no one could expect to find, in a work open to the public, the final mysteries of that which was preserved for countless ages as the grandest secret of the sanctuary. But, without divulging the key to the profane, or being taxed with undue indiscretion, we may be allowed to lift a corner of the veil which shrouds the majestic doctrines of old. Let us then write down the patriarchs as they ought to stand in their relation to the Zodiac, and see how they correspond with the signs.
The following diagram represents Ezekiel's Wheel, as given in many works, among others, in Hargrave Jennings' Rosicrucians:
Ezekiel's Wheel (exoteric).
These signs are (follow numbers):
1, Aries; 2, Taurus; 3, Gemini; 4, Cancer; 5, Leo; 6, Virgo, or the ascending line of the grand cycle of creation. After this comes 7, Libra — "man," which, though it is found right in the middle, or the intersection point, leads down the numbers:
8, Scorpio; 9, Sagittarius; 10, Capricornus; 11, Aquarius; and 12, Pisces.
While discussing the double sign of Virgo-Scorpio and Libra, Hargrave Jennings observes (p. 65):
"All this is incomprehensible, except in the strange mysticism of the Gnostics and the kabalists; and the whole theory requires a key of explanation to render it intelligible; which key is only darkly referred to as possible, but refused absolutely, by these extraordinary men, as not permissible to be disclosed."
The said key must be turned seven times before the whole system is divulged. We will give it but one turn, and thereby allow the profane one glimpse into the mystery. Happy he, who understands the whole!
Ezekiel's Wheel (esoteric).
To explain the presence of Jodheva (or Yodheva), or what is generally termed the tetragram , and of Adam and Eve, it will suffice to remind the reader of the following verses in Genesis, with their right meaning inserted in brackets.
1. "And God [Elohicreated man in his [theiown image . . . male and female created he them [him]" — (ch. 1. 27).
2. "Male and female created he them [hi. . . and called their [hiname Adam" — (v. 2).
When the ternary is taken in the beginning of the tetragram, it expresses the divine creation spiritually, i.e., without any carnal sin: taken at its opposite end it expresses the latter; it is feminine. The name of Eve is composed of three letters, that of the primitive or heavenly
Adam, is written with one letter, Jod or Yodh; therefore it must not be read Jehova but Ieva, or Eve. The Adam of the first chapter is the spiritual, therefore pure androgyne, Adam Kadmon. When woman issues from the left rib of the second Adam (of dust), the pure Virgo is separated, and falling "into generation," or the downward cycle, becomes Scorpio,*emblem of sin and matter. While the ascending cycle points at the purely spiritual races, or the ten prediluvian patriarchs (the Pradjapatis, and Sephiroth)† are led on by the creative Deity itself, who is Adam Kadmon or Yodcheva, the lower one is that of the terrestrial races, led on by Enoch or Libra, theseventh; who, because he is half-divine, half-terrestrial, is said to have been taken by God alive. Enoch, or Hermes, or Libra are one. All are the scales of universal harmony; justice and equilibrium are placed at the central point of the Zodiac. The grand circle of the heavens, so well discoursed upon by Plato, in his Timaeus, symbolizes the unknown as a unity; and the smaller circles which form the cross, by their division on the plane of the Zodiacal ring — typify, at the point of their intersection, life. The centripetal and centrifugal forces, as symbols of Good and Evil, Spirit and Matter, Life and Death, are also those of the Creator and the Destroyer, — Adam and Eve, or God and the Devil, as they say in common parlance. In the subjective, as well as in the objective worlds, they are the two powers, which through their eternal conflict keep the universe of spirit and matter in harmony. They force the planets to pursue their paths, and keep them in their elliptical orbits, thus tracing the astronomical cross in their revolution through the Zodiac. In their conflict the centripetal force, were it to prevail, would drive the planets and living souls into the sun, type of the invisible Spiritual Sun, the Paraatma or great universal Soul, their parent; while the centrifugal force would chase both planets and souls into the dreary space, far from the luminary of the objective universe, away from the spiritual realm of salvation and eternal life, and into the chaos of final cosmic destruction, and individual annihilation. But the balance is there, ever sensitive at the intersection point. It regulates the action of the two combatants, and the combined effort of both, causes planets and "living souls" to pursue a double diagonal line in their revolution through Zodiac and Life; and thus preserving strict harmony, in visible and invisible heaven and earth, the forced unity of the two reconciles spirit and matter, and Enoch is
said to stand a "Metatron" before God. Reckoning from him down to Noah and his three sons, each of these represent a new "world," i.e., our earth, which is the seventh* after every period of geological transformation, gives birth to another and distinct race of men and beings.
Cain leads the ascending line, or Macrocosm, for he is the Son of the "Lord," not of Adam (Genesis iv. 1). The "Lord" is Adam Kadmon, Cain, the Son of sinful thought, not the progeny of flesh and blood, Seth on the other hand is the leader of the races of earth, for he is the Son of Adam, and begotten "in his own likeness, after his image" (Genesis v. 3). Cain is Kenu, Assyrian, and means eldest, while the Hebrew word means a Smith, an artificer.
Our science shows that the globe has passed through five distinct geological phases, each characterized by a different stratum, and these are in reverse order, beginning with the last: 1. The Quaternary period, in which man appears as a certainty; 2. The Tertiary period, in which he may have appeared; 3. Secondary period, that of gigantic saurians, the megalosaurus, icthyosaurus, and plesiosaurus — no vestige of man; 4. The Palaeozoic period, that of gigantic crustacea; 5 (or first). The Azoic period, during which science asserts organic life had not yet appeared.
And is there no possibility that there was a period, and several periods, when man existed, and yet was not an organic being — therefore could not have left any vestige of himself for exact science? Spirit leaves no skeletons or fossils behind, and yet few are the men on earth who doubt that man can live both objectively and subjectively. At all events, the theology of the Brahmans, hoary with antiquity, and which divides the formative periods of the earth into four ages, and places between each of these a lapse of 1,728,000 years, far more agrees with official science and modern discovery than the absurd chronological notions promulgated by the Councils of Nice and Trent.
The names of the patriarchs were not Hebrew, though they may
have been Hebraized later; they are evidently of Assyrian or Aryan origin.
Thus Adam, for instance, stands in the explained Kabala as a convertible term, and applies nearly to every other patriarch, as every Sephiroth to each Sephira, and vice versa. Adam, Cain, and Abel form the first triad of the twelve. They correspond in the Sephiral tree to the Crown, Wisdom, and Intelligence; and in astrology to the three trigons — the fiery, the earthy, and the airy; which fact, were we allowed to devote more space than we have to its elucidation, would perhaps show that astrology deserves the name of science as well as any other. Adam (Kadmon) or Aries (ram) is identical with the Egyptian ram-headed god Amun, fabricating man on the potter's wheel. His duplication, therefore — or the Adam of dust — is also Aries, Amon, when standing at the head of his generations, for he fabricates mortals also in "his own likeness." In astrology the planet Jupiter is connected with the "first house" (Aries). The color of Jupiter, as seen in the "stages of the seven spheres," on the tower of Borsippa, or Birs Nimrud, was red;*and in Hebrew Adam means "red" as well as "man." The Hindu god Agni, who presides at the sign of Pisces, next to that of Aries in their relation to the twelve months (February and March),† is painted of a deep red color, with two faces (male and female), three legs, and seven arms; the whole forming the number twelve. So, also, Noah (Pisces), who appears in the generations as the twelfth patriarch, counting Cain and Abel, is Adam again under another name, for he is the forefather of a new race of mankind; and with his "three sons," one bad, one good, and one partaking of both qualities, is the terrestrial reflection of the super-terrestrial Adam and his three sons. Agni is represented mounted on a ram, with a tiara surmounted by a cross.‡
Kain, presiding over the Taurus (Bull) of the Zodiac, is also very suggestive. Taurus belongs to the earthy trigon, and in connection with this sign it will not be amiss to remind the student of an allegory from the Persian Avesta. The story goes that Ormazd produced a being — source and type of all the universal beings — called Life, or Bull in the Zend. Ahriman (Cain) kills this being (Abel), from the seed of which
(Seth) new beings are produced. Abel, in Assyrian, means son, but in Hebrew it means something ephemeral, not long-lived, valueless, andalso a "Pagan idol,"* as Kain means a Hermaic statue (a pillar, the symbol of generation). Likewise, Abel is the female counterpart of Cain (male), for they are twins and probably androgynous; the latter answering to Wisdom, the former to Intelligence.
So with all other patriarchs. Enos, , is Homo again — a man, or the same Adam, and Enoch in the bargain; and Kain-an is identical with Cain. Seth, , is Teth, or Thoth, or Hermes; and this is the reason, no doubt, why Josephus, in his first book (ch. 3) shows Seth so proficient in astrology, geometry, and other occult sciences. Foreseeing the flood, he says, he engraved the fundamental principles of his art on two pillars of brick and stone, the latter of which "he saw himself [Josephuto remain in Syria in his own time." Thus is it that Seth is identified also with Enoch, to whom kabalists and Masons attribute the same feat; and, at the same time, with Hermes, or Kadmus again, for Enoch is identical with the former; He-noch means a teacher, an initiator, or an initiate; in Grecian mythology, Inachus. We have seen the part he is made to play in the Zodiac.
Mahalaleel, if we Hebrew characterste , ma-ha-la, means tender, merciful; and therefore is he made to correspond with the fourth Sephira, Love or Mercy, emanated from the first triad.† Irad, , or Iared, is (minus the vowels) precisely the same. If from the verb , it means descent; if from , arad, it means offspring, and thus corresponds perfectly with the kabalistic emanations.
Lamech, , is not Hebrew, but Greek. Lam-ach means Lam — the father, and Ou-Lom-Ach is the father of the age; or the father of him (Noah) who inaugurates a new era or period of creation after the pralaya of the deluge; Noah being the symbol of a new world, the Kingdom (Malchuth) of the Sephiroth; hence his father, corresponding to the ninth Sephiroth, is the Foundation.‡ Furthermore, both father and son answer to Aquarius and Pisces in the Zodiac; and thus the former belonging to the airy and the latter to the watery trigons, they close the list of the biblical myths.
But if, as we see, every patriarch represents, in one sense, like each of the Pradjapatis, a new race of antediluvian human beings; and if, as it may as easily be proved, they are the copies of the Babylonian Saros,
or ages, the latter themselves copies of the Hindu ten dynasties of the "Lords of beings,"* yet, however we may regard them, they are among the profoundest allegories ever conceived by philosophical minds.
In the Nuctemeron,† the evolution of the universe and its successive periods of formation, together with the gradual development of the human races, are illustrated as fully as possible in the twelve "hours" into which the allegory is divided. Each "hour" typifies the evolution of a new man, and in its turn is divided into four quarters or ages. This work shows how thoroughly was the ancient philosophy imbued with the doctrines of the early Aryans, who were the first to divide the life on our planet into four ages. If one would trace this doctrine from its source in the night of the traditional period down to the Seer of Patmos, he need not go astray among the religious systems of all nations. The Babylonians he would find teaching that in four different periods four Oannes (or suns) appeared; the Hindus asserting their four Yuga; the Greeks, Romans, and others firmly believing in the golden, silver, brazen, and iron ages, each of the epochs being heralded by the appearance of a saviour. The four Buddhas of the Hindus and the three prophets of the Zoroastrians — Oshedar-Cami, Oshedar-mah, and Sosiosh — preceded by Zarotushtra, are the types of these ages.
In the Bible, the very opening tells us that before the sons of God saw the daughters of men, the latter lived from 365 to 969 years. But when the "Lord God" saw the iniquities of mankind, He concluded to allow them at most 120 years of life (Genesis vi. 3). To account for such a violent oscillation in the human mortality-table is only possible by tracing this decision of the "Lord God" to its origin. Such incongruities as we meet at every step in the Bible can be only attributed to the facts that the book of Genesis and the other books of Moses were tampered with and remodelled by more than one author; and, that in their original state they were, with the exception of the external form of the allegories, faithful copies from the Hindu sacred books. In Manu, book i., we find the following:
"In the first age, neither sickness nor suffering were known. Men lived four centuries."
This was in the Krita or Satya yug.
"The Krita-yug is the type of justice. The bull which stands firm on its four legs is its image; man adheres to truth, and evil does not as yet direct his actions."* But in each of the following ages primitive human life loses one-fourth of its duration, that is to say, in Treta-yug man lives 300, in Dwapara-yug 200, and in Kali-yug, or our own age, but 100 years generally, at the most. Noah, son of Lamech — Oulom-Ach, or father of the age — is the distorted copy of Manu, son of Swayambhu, and the six Manus or Rishis issued from the Hindu "first man" are the originals of Terah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, and Moses, the Hebrew sages, who beginning with Terah were all alleged to have been astrologers, alchemists, inspired prophets, and soothsayers; or in a more profane but plainer language — magicians.
If we consult the Talmudistic Mishna we find therein the first emanated divine couple, the androgyne Demiurge Chochmah (or Hachma Achamoth) and Binah building themselves a house with seven pillars. They are the architects of God — Wisdom and Intelligence — and His "compass and square." The seven columns are the future seven worlds, or the typical seven primordial "days" of creation.
"Chochmah immolates her victims." These victims are the numberless forces of nature which must "die" (expend themselves) in order that they should live; when one force dies out, it is but to give birth to another force, its progeny. It dies but lives in its children, and resuscitates at every seventh generation. The servants of Chochmah, or wisdom, are the souls of H-Adam, for in him are all the souls of Israel.
There are twelve hours in the day, says the Mishna, and it is during these hours that is accomplished the creation of man. Would this be comprehensible, unless we had Manu to teach us that this "day" embraces the four ages of the world and has a duration of twelve thousand divine years of the Devas?
"The Creators (Elohim) outline in the second" hour "the shape of a more corporeal form of man. They separate it into two and prepare the sexes to become distinct from each other. Such is the way the Elohim proceeded in reference to every created thing."† "Every fish, fowl, plant, beast and man was androgyne at the first hour."
Says the commentator, the great Rabbi Simeon:
"O, companions, companions, man as emanation was both man and woman; as well on the side of the Father as on the side of the Mother. And this is the sense of the words, and Elohim spoke, Let there be Light and it was Light! . . . And this is the 'two-fold man'!"*
A spiritual woman was necessary as a contrast for the spiritual man. Harmony is the universal law. In Taylor's translation, Plato's discourse upon creation is rendered so as to make him say of this universe that "He caused it to move with circular motion. . . . When, therefore, that God who is a perpetually reasoning Divinity, cogitated about that God (man) who was destined to subsist at some certain period of time, He produced his body smooth and even, and every way even and whole from the centre, and made it perfect. This perfect circle of the created God, He decussated in the form of the letter X."
The italics of both these sentences from Timaeus belong to Dr. Lundy, the author of that remarkable work mentioned once before, Monumental Christianity; and attention is drawn to the words of the Greek philosopher, with the evident purpose of giving them the prophetic character which Justin Martyr applied to the same, when accusing Plato of having borrowed his "physiological discussion in the Timaeus . . . concerning the Son of God placed crosswise in the universe," from Moses and his serpent of brass. The learned author seems to fully accord an unpremeditated prophecy to these words; although he does not tell us whether he believes that like Plato's created god, Jesus was originally a sphere "smooth and even, and every way even and whole from the centre." Even if Justin Martyr were excusable for his perversion of Plato, Dr. Lundy ought to know that the day for that sort of casuistry is long gone by. What the philosopher meant was man, who before being encased in matter had no use for limbs, but was a pure spiritual entity. Hence if the Deity, and his universe, and the stellar bodies are to be conceived as spheroidal, this shape would be archetypal man's. As his enveloping shell grew heavier, there came the necessity for limbs, and the limbs sprouted. If we fancy a man with arms and legs naturally extended at the same angle, by backing him against the circle that symbolizes his prior shape as a spirit, we would have the very figure described by Plato — the X cross within the circle.
All the legends of the creation, the fall of man, and the resultant deluge, belong to universal history, and are no more the property of the Israelites than that of any other nation. What specially belongs to them (kabalists excepted) are the disfigured details of every tradition. The Genesis of Enoch is by far anterior to the books of Moses,† and
Guillaume Postel has presented it to the world, explaining the allegories as far as he dared; but the ground-work is still unexposed. For the Jews, the Book of Enoch is as canonical as the Mosaic books; and if the Christians accepted the latter as an authority, we do not see why they should reject the former as an apocrypha. No more can the age of one than that of the other be determined with anything like certainty. At the time of the separation, the Samaritans recognized only the books of Moses and that of Joshua, says Dr. Jost.* In 168 B.C., Jerusalem had its temple plundered, and all the sacred books were destroyed;† therefore, the few MSS. that remained were to be found only among the "teachers of tradition." The kabalistic Tanaim, and their initiates and prophets had always practised its teachings in common with the Canaanites, the Hamites, Midianites, Chaldeans, and all other nations. The story of Daniel is a proof of it.
There was a sort of Brotherhood, or Freemasonry among the kabalists scattered all over the world, since the memory of man; and, like some societies of the mediaeval Masonry of Europe, they called themselves Companions‡ and Innocents.§It is a belief (founded on knowledge) among the kabalists, that no more than the Hermetic rolls are the genuine sacred books of the seventy-two elders — books which contained the "Ancient Word" — lost, but that they have all been preserved from the remotest times among secret communities. Emanuel Swedenborg says as much, and his words are based, he says, on the information he had from certain spirits, who assured him that "they performed their worship according to this Ancient Word." "Seek for it in China," adds the great seer, "peradventure you may find it in Great Tartary!" Other students of occult sciences have had more than the word of "certain spirits" to rely upon in this special case — they have seen the books.
We must choose therefore perforce between two methods — either to accept the Bible exoterically or esoterically. Against the former we have the following facts: That, after the first copy of the Book of God has been edited and launched on the world by Hilkiah, this copy disappears, and Ezra has to make a new Bible, which Judas Maccabeus finishes; that when it was copied from the horned letters into square letters, it was corrupted beyond recognition; that the Masorah completed the work of destruction; that, finally, we have a text, not 900 years old, abounding
with omissions, interpolations, and premeditated perversions; and that, consequently, as this Masoretic Hebrew text has fossilized its mistakes, and the key to the "Word of God" is lost, no one has a right to enforce upon so-called "Christians" the divagations of a series of hallucinated and, perhaps, spurious prophets, under the unwarranted and untenable assumption that the author of it was the "Holy Ghost" in propria personae.
Hence, we reject this pretended monotheistic Scripture, made up just when the priests of Jerusalem found their political profit in violently breaking off all connection with the Gentiles. It is at this moment only that we find them persecuting kabalists, and banning the "old wisdom" of both Pagans and Jews. The real Hebrew Bible was a secret volume, unknown to the masses, and even the Samaritan Pentateuch is far more ancient than the Septuagint. As for the former, the Fathers of the Church never even heard of it. We prefer decidedly to take the word of Swedenborg that the "Ancient Word" is somewhere in China or the Great Tartary. The more so, as the Swedish seer is declared, at least by one clergyman, namely, the Reverend Dr. R. L. Tafel, of London, to have been in a state of "inspiration from God," while writing his theological works. He is given even the superiority over the penmen of the Bible, for, while the latter had the words spoken to them in their ears, Swedenborg was made to understand them rationally and was, therefore, internally and not externally illuminated. "When," says the reverend author, "a conscientious member of the New Church hears any charges made against the divinity and the infallibility of either the soul or the body of the doctrines of the New Jerusalem, he must at once place himself on the unequivocal declaration made in those doctrines, that the Lord has effected His second coming in and by means of those writings which were published by Emanuel Swedenborg, as His servant, and that, therefore, those charges are not and cannot be true." And if it is "the Lord" that spoke through Swedenborg, then there is a hope for us that at least one divine will corroborate our assertions, that the ancient "word of God" is nowhere but in the heathen countries, especially Buddhistic Tartary, Thibet, and China!
"The primitive history of Greece is the primitive history of India," exclaims Pococke in his India in Greece. In view of subsequent fruits of critical research, we may paraphrase the sentence and say: "The primitive history of Judea is a distortion of Indian fable engrafted on that of Egypt." Many scientists, encountering stubborn facts, and being reluctant to contrast the narratives of the "divine" revelation with those of the Brahmanical books, merely present them to the reading public. Meanwhile they limit their conclusions to criticisms and contradictions
of each other. So Max Muller opposes the theories of Spiegel, and some one else; and Professor Whitney those of the Oxford Orientalist; and Dr. Haug made onslaughts on Spiegel, while Dr. Spiegel chose some other victim; and now even the time-honored Akkadians and Turanians have had their day of glory. The Proto-Kasdeans, Kasdeo-Scyths, Sumirians, and what not, have to make room for some other fictions. Alas! for the Akkads, Halevy, the Assyriologist attacks the Akkado-Sumirian language of old Babylon, and Chabas, the Egyptologist, not content with dethroning the Turanian speech, which has rendered such eminent services to Orientalists when perplexed, calls the venerable parent of the Akkadians — Francois Lenormant — himself, a charlatan. Profiting by the learned turmoil, the Christian clergy take heart for their fantastic theology on the ground that when the jury disagree there is a gain of time at least for the indicted party. And thus is overlooked the vital question whether Christendom would not be the better for adopting Christism in place of Christianity, with its Bible, its vicarious atonement and its Devil. But to so important a personage as the latter, we could not do less than devote a special chapter.