3/30/2010 | Share this article:By Mriana --
Excuse me for a few moments as I somewhat mirror “The Lorax” in this rant/essay and prepare to rumble with the Pentecostals and alike religious extremists.
John Shelby Spong are not above saying there are dangers and consequences of Biblical literalism.
Most of the time, I immediately throw away such propaganda, but this one I thought I would save long enough to write about it and apparently anyone who wants to follow along with this flier can go to www.comingconflict.com . It appears to be the very same primitive tribal information I have in front of me. Welcome to Pentecostal Land, where you get propaganda that never should have had trees killed to begin with just to have it printed.
The front page of this flier says:
ISLAM VS. CHRISTIANITY The Coming Conflict
That statement might seem unsubstantial concerning my statement, but take a look at the pictures. This is their so called “I’ma Gettin’ Outta Here” mythology, Armageddon for Fundamngelicals, and not some sort of non-violent showdown debate. They have pictures of modern day military helicopters and the most telling feature is the cloud of smoke from a bomb. The players on the battlefield, in this modern day tribal thought and according to the first page of the flier are Barack Obama, the [Creepy] Pope, Ahmadinejad, and I think the final person is Osama Ben Laden. By the way, who is that oddly dressed White man, with a bit of a tan, on the back? (Click “location” on the website to see this strange White man - if you can find a link that works, like on the home page.) Ahmadinejad is darker and looks more Middle Eastern than that man.
All jabs against the design and art of the website and flier aside, there is NO prophesy in this, but rather it is a bunch of insane religious people trying to battle it out for the supreme religion and destroy this planet in the process. While trying to destroy this planet, they hope to see their god and they will, in the form of a nuclear weapon. I just hope I am not the female version of Charlton Heston who screams at the end of The Planet of the Apes (1968), “The bastards did it! You maniacs! You blew it up! Damn you. Goddamn you all to hell. ”
Oh, but we are not done yet with this vulgar tribal violence. Turn the page and you see Is[is]-Ra-El is involved too, with some stupid fictional race to “I’ma gettin’ outta here!” Then there is mention of Revelations chapter 13 with “the Beast”, and of course that silly 666 deal. To top it off, they mention once again Islam v. Christianity,“suicide bombers, and “the quest for Paradise”. Both sides want to go to “Paradise”, but I will talk about that more after I lay out the disturbing war map, which boils down to nothing more than a twisted lateralization of literature.
The Bible alone is the “text book” for this brainwashing. How quaint. Not only that, they say one will understand a whole lot of things about Revelations and the Battle of “I’ma Gettin’ Outta Here!” after attending this psychologically damaging course. Well let me say, screw that, because I am going to explain it all in a way that hopefully makes a whole lot more sense than these war mongrels who want to make their “god” or “prophet” descend from the clouds. It is a more rational critique of this literature than what they propose and the emphasis is on rational and literature. If you do not like my interpretation of the literature that is fine, but do not go about trying to make your Jesus or Mohammad descend from the sky or you will find out that the real god/prophet you worship is nothing more than a nuclear bomb. However, I can promise you that my interpretation is far less violent and less harmful than any god believing person’s and makes a hell of a lot more sense.
First, Revelations is a genre of literature that was popular around the time that the so named author John wrote. There are many apocalyptic stories written around that time, not just “John’s” story. It is not prophesy. It is just a story full of allegory, symbolism, and metaphor, which happened to be chosen as canon in the Bible, while others were not.
The list of apocalyptic literature goes as such:
From “The Nag Hammadi Library”:
The Apocalypse of Paul
The (First) Apocalypse of James
The (Second) Apocalypse of James
The Apocalypse of Adam
Apocalypse of Peter
From “The Other Bible”:
The Apocalypse of Adam (Gnostic): The Revelations of Adam’s Origin as Told to His Son Seth. This book was also mentioned above, but this gives more details as to what the story is about.
The War of the Sons of Light With the Sons of Darkness- While not specifically called Apocalyptic, it fits the category of “doom and gloom”, which is what most Apocalyptic stories are about or more accurately, “Dooms Day Literature”. However, it is a story of good verses evil, just as Revelation is.
The Apocryphal Acts of the Apostles and the Acts of John- Peter, Paul, Andrew, and Thomas also had Apocryphal Acts, not just John.
Apocalypses according to “The Other Bible”:
The Book of Enoch
The Book of the Secrets of Enoch
The Sibylline Oracles
The Apocalypse of Baruch
The Apocalypse of Ezra
The Ascension of Isaiah
Apocalypse of Peter
Apocalypse of Paul
Apocalypse of Thomas
Hermes Tresmegistus: Poimandres
Hermes Tresmegistus: Asclepius
Hermes Tresmegistus: On God’s Bisexuality
The Book of Thomas the Contender
The Thunder, Perfect Mind
That list is just the tip of the iceberg for apocalyptic literature written between the approximate dates of 200 B. C. E. and second century C. E. Many of the stories were either destroyed or burned when the Great Library of Alexandria was burned down. Others were hidden by some wise people and in all honesty, we were lucky to find and salvage some of these stories, because these other stories show that The Apocalypse of John, AKA The Revelation to John, is just one more in a series of the genre of literature known as Apocalyptic writing. Such stories are hardly prophesy and are more in tune with Science Fiction writing than anything else.
Revelations in the Bible is a spurious manuscript compiled from much older texts, much like Mark wrote from other mythologies and Matthew, Luke and John followed his writing. On top of it all, this John is not any of the previous Johns found in the Bible and his book is of extreme antiquity. It dates back to 4000 years ago and supposedly relates to Mithraic legend of one of the early Zoroasters. Some, such as Jacolliot, claimed it was gleaned from Krishna/Christna even, but I am not going there with this essay. However, I will stick mostly with Egyptian mythology and save that for another time.
Also note that Jesus and Christ are used sparingly in the Book of Revelations. Supposedly this reveals that these names were interpolated long after the book was written. Whatever the case, the Book of Revelation is just a story and makes more sense based on symbolism, with the hero being the sun, the heroine being the moon, and the other characters being the planets, stars, and constellations with the stage being the sky, earth, rivers, and sea. All of this is based on Egyptian Astronomical mythology.
Yes, I hear the arguments now, including debate about even Acharya S., AKA D. M. Murdock, but she was not the only who has said these things. Gerald Massey has said them and both Robert M. Price and John Shelby Spong have hinted at some of these things. Be that as it may, I am going to explain it in a way that hopefully appears to be much more logical than those “I’ma Gettin’ Outta Here” people. To interpret the story metaphorically and allegorically makes far more sense than silly superstition.
Let us start with the most obvious of their statements- the Mark of the Beast or 666. This is numerology and not an actual mark. The number 666 was supposedly held sacred in goddess worshiping cultures as representative of female genitalia. When the goddess was vilified by the patriarch, she became “the Beast” and her sacred number “the Mark”. The mark, however, was not evil or bad in Judaism, as evidence by the story of Solomon. Rather, it was a sacred number. (Acharya) The Pythagoreans considered it a perfect number, because it divides the universe into equal parts.
In Egyptian mythology, the number 666 also corresponds to the sun rising at 6:00 A. M., reaching its height at around noon, and setting at 6:00 P.M. It could also apply to the three worlds in which the soul dwells, in ancient Egyptian mythology: Ta (earth), which exists from 6 A.M. to 6 P.M., Dwat (Netherworld), which is the world of laws and shadows, existing from 6 P.M. to midnight, and the heavenly kingdom, which exists from midnight to 6 A.M. (Seleem) Either way, we have a case of sixes and we see the morning star or the sun, Amen-Ra, represented by a circle, who has *no beginning, no end*, and no middle. When one understands this, Rev: 22:16 becomes clearer, because Lo and behold, Jesus identifies himself as the “morning star”:
“I Jesus have sent my angel to you with this testimony for the churches. I am the root of the offspring of David, *the bright morning star.* (RSV) Note that “Jesus” appears to be a probable addition to the text, just as the comment above suggests about “Jesus” and “Christ”.
Just as Osiris is equated with the “morning star” in the Coffin (Sp. 722) and Pyramid Texts (PT 519:1207a and 593:1636/M 206), so is Jesus. Horus was not only the sun but also the Morning Star, just as Jesus is being portrayed in Revelations.
One interesting note to make is that Lucifer, in the Old Testament, is also the Light Bearer and is associated with the Morning Star or Day Star, which is also Venus. Lucifer is not Satan, AKA Adversary from the Hebrew and Semitic term “Shaytan”, but the morning star. The name Satan was never applied to Lucifer in the Bible, not even in Luke 10:18 or Rev. 12:7-10. However, Lucifer is also often pictured as felling/descending from the clouds in that mythical story, in reference to his fall in Isaiah 14:3-20. The Latin word Lucifer is also used again in 2 Peter 1:19 for “morning star”. In the Latin Vulgate, Jerome translated "הילל בן־שׁחר" (morning star, son of dawn) as "lucifer qui mane oriebaris" (morning star that used to rise early) and in the The Septuagint Greek translation of the phrase uses the same interpretation of "son of dawn": ὁ ἑωσφόρος ὁ πρωὶ ἀνατέλλων (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucifer ).
The “bright morning star” is also found in Egyptian mythology and with that mythology in mind, I will take you back to Rev. 3:14:
“And to the angel of the church in La-odice’a write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation.” (RSV and NKJV)
“Amen” in this statement does not mean verily, truly, or so be it. It is Amen Ra/Ammon/Amen. What we have here, is yet another version of Egyptian mythology set to Christian mythology. The sun god Amen Ra is now called God and taken as Jesus, who is part of the three in one. Thus, Jesus is both the sun and the Morning Star.
The number seven is considered perfect and is what the cosmos is supposedly built upon, not just in the Bible or the Egyptian texts, but in things outside the Bible too, such as the days of the week. In Revelations 5:6 Jesus is the lamb with seven horns and seven eyes. The horns signify power with the eyes being the sun, moon, and five inner planets. The elders are the 24 hours in the day and the four creatures/angels are the four corners of the earth. The seven seals are not from God, but from Ezekiel, who got it from the Babylonians, the Assyrians, and the Sumerians. The Seven seals are identical with the seven decrees of Ishtar and Innana. They are also the seven gates through which the Prince of Light must pass, representing the hours of the night.
I do not expect everyone to be following me completely and it is difficult to cover a whole work of literature thoroughly in a short essay. Some people may even be skeptical of this comparison to Egyptian mythology, but I continue to pursue the issue.
Still others may be asking about the seven plagues. These would be the seven bowls which contain the wrath of God on earth. These seven bowls are the seven powers. These seven powers cause the destruction of the world in Egyptian mythology. In Egyptian mythology, we have the seven stars which represent the seven human organs, seven glands, and the seven major countries of the world. Not to mention, there are also seven spirits whose power descends on the earth between the hours of midnight and 6 A.M. (Seleem)
The seven angels correspond to the seven hathors of the Egyptians who are seven beings who make decrees and of which the dead met on their journey through the seven spheres of the afterlife. The seven hathors are also the seven gates representing the night hours. The seven torches of fire or the seven branch lamp stand are the sun in the middle with the moon and five inner planets as satellites corresponding to the days of the week.
Finally, in chapter 13 we see the seven heads rising up from the sea with ten horns and ten crowns. According to Massey these “are the ten horns or powers of the solar dragon indicate a heaven in ten domains, ten islands, or ten circles of Ra, in the Ritual, which preceded the ultimate heaven in twelve divisions. This is intimated when “the tenth part of the city fell” as one of the ten divisions passing away in the course of precession.” In 13:11 we find another beast with two horns. According to Massey, “This was Sebek, who, under one type, was the crocodile, and under the other, a lamb.”
Humm… Sebek almost sounds like a Vulcan name in Star Trek. As I said before, Revelation is much like Science Fiction and I doubt Bob Price would disagree on that comparison.
Anyway, when this story is compared to Egyptian mythology, it makes more sense then it does with the interpretation of Rapture believing Evangelicals. Revelations is filled with many similar motifs in Egyptian mythology and is hardly prophesy. These various motifs can be found in other previous mythologies and has nothing to do with the second coming of Christ or even Mohammad, but rather was written to usher in a new age. This ushering in of a new age can also be seen when John the Baptist announces Rosh Hashanah in Matt 3:2. He is the personified shofar or trumpet of God. (Spong) He too is ushering in a new age and not actually talking about the end of the world. This Rosh Hashanah midrash in Matthew was taken primarily from Isaiah. (Ibid) Moses moved from Age of Taurus to the Age of Aries and in Matthew, John is ushering in the Age of Pisces or moving from the Age of Aries into the Age of Pisces. Revelations is also ushering in a new era, not prophesying the end of the world or the “Coming of the Messiah”.
Regardless of whether or not people believe there is Egyptian solar mythology involved in the Bible or even just rewritten mythology, especially in the Book of Revelations, the fact remains that Revelation is NOT prophesy. It is part of a genre of literature that was popular long ago and is nothing but a story full of symbolism, allegory, and metaphor. Personally, I get sick and tired of people making more out of the story than what it really is.
If people wish to live in a fairy tale world, that is fine, but do not re-enact the story by killing people and destroying the world in an effort to make your fairy tale come true. It is not going to happen, so… "Take your stinking paws off me, you damn dirty ape!" or at least take your stinking paws off the “Truffula” trees and my mailbox. In the end, what you find is that your god is nothing more than a nuclear weapon and IF by chance you survive that, you just might find that you have been living your whole life by way of a story book and that god never existed. In my honest opinion, that is a sad way to live one’s life and is nothing but primitive tribal thinking people with modern day weapons, especially when there is absolutely no truth it. Such a combination of primitive tribalism and modern weapons is an extremely dangerous combination, because there is no heaven/paradise, no hell, and there will certainly be no second coming of any messiah or prophet. Revelations is pure mythology full of symbolism, allegory, metaphor, and nothing more. It is just one more piece of literature and not something people need to kill each other over to the point that they drop the “Big One”. It’s just a friggin’ story!
Sources for this short essay:
The Illustrated Egyptian Book of the Dead by Ramses Seleem
Notes from Acharya S. various works
Ancient Egypt- The Light of the World by Gerald Massey: http://hpb.narod.ru/Book11AncientEgypt.htm
A New Christianity For a New World by John Shelby Spong
The Nag Hammadi Library (found on Amazon)
The Other Bible (found on Amazon)
The Pagan Christ by Tom Harpur
Various brief discussions with Robert M. Price
As well as my own thoughts and opinions