Making Holy Myths
Of all the creation myths of ancient people, the opening chapter of the book of Genesis, ie book of beginnings, stands in a class by itself. Unlike all other cultures Before our Common Era, the priests of Yahweh in 8th century BCE Jerusalem were busily indulging themselves in setting up the self-serving premise of divine discrimination. The Creator which the authors presented in Genesis, who walked in his walled-in garden and talked to himself, is thus depicted as either not omniscient (all knowing) or as an insensitive schemer. For example, where is the wisdom of placing two tempting fruit bearing trees as the focal point of his garden landscape and then forbidding two newly created and uncomprehending beings the freedom to eat of them? It is weak story plotting. But it didn’t really matter to the priest authors, for the underlying purpose of the story was to channel the Hebrew people away from a belief in numerous gods and goddesses as revered in other surrounding cultures. Gradually and with considerable difficulty the people were indoctrinated with the premise of one humanlike being–male of course–who created limited matter identities without the necessity of polar energy intercourse.
In this 8th century BCE timeframe the civilizations such as Babylonia, Egypt, Assyria, Greece, etc., recognized and respected the interactions of the incalculable universal energies. And it was these unseen but interrelated and interacting primal creative forces which the ancient cultures personified as a pantisocracy* of gods and goddesses. (*A utopian society in which all are equal and each has governing power: it is a concept which is the heartbeat of democracy.) The energies that interact throughout nature and all through the universe do often appear in opposition, hence the “gods” that personified those primal actions were often depicted in Pagan cultures as in competition or in a state of lust. There was never any doubt among those Pagan cultures however that such creative energies originated from a singular Source.
The Yahweh priests in the 8th century BCE Jerusalem slyly contrived the claim that the indifferent source-power of Creation had singled out only one group of people (them, of course) as the sole recipients of his blessings. To accomplish this pretext of divine discrimination the wily priest-editors referred to those same primal and diverse creative energies which were responsible for all manifested life as their historical ancestors and dubbed those primal energies as Israelites–the alleged descendants of the Genesis character Jacob-Israel. The “gods” that were recognized by the surrounding cultures, and which symbolized the same diverse creative energies were then purposely ridiculed as being too spiritually deficient to have been chosen by the source power which the priests characterized a Yahweh. But this assault on Pagan wisdom necessitated finding a means to explain the diverse energy attributes which were represented and personified by those cultures as gods and goddesses.
The priest editors who reworked ancient astronomy knowledge, Cabalistic texts and old Pagan and Hebrew myths certainly knew what the Pagan gods actually symbolized: that those gods signified energy interactions operating all through the universe which, unseen for the most part by man, do have direct effect on all life forms. The Yahweh priests’ clever scheme for demoting the Pagans’ numerous gods was to simply give those primal creative forces a different designation. Consequently those diverse creative forces were reassigned by the priests from Pagan recognition as “gods” into Yahweh’s servants, and they were then addressed as “angels.” For all extent and purpose, the attributes and special duties which the Pagan cultures recognized as gods were simply transferred to a regiment of “angels.” The angels, of course, were envisioned as acting under the direction of a divinely indifferent (amoral) source-power which was personified as Yahweh-God. It should be noted that amoral does not mean immoral: it signifies that any judgmental inclinations or condemnatory personality features are not present.
Another major misunderstanding regarding creative principles that is promoted in Genesis is in the personification of the polar energies necessary for any and all definable energy-form manifestations. These personifications are the well-known characters of Adam and Eve. In the earliest part of the book of Genesis the character of Eve is referred to as “Mother of all living” (Genesis 3:20), which suggests the rank of a near-sacred being. Curiously, this title which Adam allegedly bestowed upon Eve happens to be identical to what the Sumerians had bestowed upon the love goddess Aruru, for she was regarded in their prehistory culture to be the creatrix of all life.
Eve’s implied eminence in Genesis, even after she made her alleged fruit-picking mistake, reflects the Pagan understanding that creation of all life forms can take place only through a process of polar energy interaction. That is why various neighboring cultures around Jerusalem which the priests of Yahweh envied, such as Phencian, Hittie, Assyrian, Egyptian, Ugaritic, etc., gave homage to goddesses as being equal in divine power with the gods. But Eve, according to the Yahweh priest authors, was demoted and declared to have been extracted from Adam’s side and designed by Yahweh-Jehovah simply to serve as Adam’s helpmeet. This was a deliberate capsizing of Pagan understanding that creation of all definable energy forms came from an exchange of equal but counterpart polar energies. The premise presented by the priest authors was that Yahweh merely had to mutter things into material existence, and this story feature had no parallel in any other early Mediterranean or Eastern myths. The advantage of this priestly flight of fancy of divine discrimination was that it placed man (especially the political minded priests) in an indisputable authoritarian position. Unfortunately, by demoting the feminine polar aspect (popularly designated the negative pole) which is equal and necessary for life production, the Genesis myth of Creation essentially rejects the scientific principle by which polarized energies manifest as matter forms. And western religious understanding of the basic principles of Creation and fruition (evolution) of life manifestation has been plagued with controversy and misunderstanding ever since.