Archive for October, 2010

Sin of Onan, Respecting Ethics (sort of)

Posted in agnoticism, Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, culture, faith, freethought, life, random, religion, sex, sex taboos, thoughts with tags , , , , on October 26, 2010 by chouck017894

In the Genesis tale of Joseph, the plot is interrupted with the subplot regarding Onan, a son by Joseph’s half-brother Judah by a Canaanite woman named Shuah (Genesis 38:2).  Shuah had already borne another son by Judah, and that firstborn son was named Er; and she would bear a third son named Shelah.  This typical “begatting” was cut short in this storytelling, and by verse seven the son Er was found to be “…wicked in the sight of the Lord; and the Lord slew him.” 

The theory of primordial man, according to the priest authors of biblical tales, was that every woman must be made pregnant.  But when Er died from God’s alleged displeasure, he had not yet sired any offspring.  This was propagandized as an almost shameful situation.  One must alway increase the herd, so to speak, if you wish to achieve wealth and authority in the world.  Thus, since Er died without progeny, Judah charged his second-born son, Onan, with the duty of impregnating Er’s wife, Tamar, so that Onan’s seed might be raised up to represent Er. 

Like most biblical characters, ethics was not a strong point with Onan, but he did not see that impregnating his brother’s wife was a particularly wise ambition.  But Tamar was attractive, and his big brother was dead, so he did take advantage of the opportunity.  Only at the orgasmic moments Onan”…spilled his seed on the ground.”  For this alleged “sin,” Onan is alleged to have been put to death (Genesis 38:6-10).

Here we are allowed to see how interpretation by Bible fanatics can so often go absurdly astray.  Although this myth says that Onan did cohabit with Tamar, his alleged “sin” was that he simply avoided impregnating his sister-in-law.  So the priest-authors say that God killed him for this!  To compound the absurdity of the alleged “sin,” Onan’s method of avoidance of impregnating his sister-in-law, coitus interruptus, came to give  rise to the term “onanism,” and half-baked Bible enthusiasts then chose to believe the word was a synonym for masturbation.  To this day these Genesis verses are pointed to by fundamentalists as indicating heavenly condemnation of autoeroticism.

Missing the point is a fundamentalist’s habitual means of carrying on a tirade.  In the erroneous interpretation of  “onanism” as signifying masturbation, the main point of the priest-author’s tale is disregarded, for, to the distress of the fanatics, Onan’s alleged “sin” was not sexual.  Onan was punished for being deceptive: he dared to refuse to fulfill the obligation of levirate marriage, meaning impregnating his dead brother’s wife to ensure the continuation of his brother’s family line for the purpose of inheritance.  This primitive tribal mode of reasoning, levirate marriage, is also addressed in Deuteronomy 25:5-10 and in Ruth 4.

The average interpreter of biblical texts does not understand that the Bible’s theme is Creation.  When recognizing this theme, the character of Onan properly personifies what may be termed the genetic principle active in life, thus he can also be said to represent the Creator.  Onan therefore refused to crossbreed, which is in agreement with the earlier Genesis command that every living thing was to bring forth after his own kind—not after his brother’s  kind.  And yet, by priest-author interpretation, “God slew him…” for following genetic purity!  The rest of chapter 38 expands upon this contorted version of the genetic process in a spicy episode of having Tamar play the harlot in order to lure her father-in-law, Judah, into misconduct and thus conceive an heir by him.  By her act, Tamar was, by tribal law, supposed to be burned alive for playing the harlot.  Of course when Judah found out that he himself was the one who had impregnated his daughter-in-law, he said that she had been more righteous than he!  The story is left to hang there, telling only that Tamar bore twins, and readers are left to wonder why those in authority are allowed to sidestep responsibility imposed upon others.  No wonder the fundamentalists and those who seek to make the Bible the model for government claim such abiding love for this book.

Joseph’s Fabulous Coat

Posted in agnoticism, Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, culture, faith, freethought, random, religion, thoughts with tags , on October 24, 2010 by chouck017894

These are the generations of Jacob.  Joseph, being seventeen years old…”   Thus begins verse two of chapter 37 of Genesis, and Joseph is pictured feeding the flock with his half-brothers.  “Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of  many colors” (verse 3).  Wait!  Benjamin was an even younger son of Israel’s old age, so where is the rationale?  But Joseph, the first-born son of Rachel, is portrayed by the priest-authors as a patriarch through whom the promises to Abraham are supposedly to be transmitted later to Israel the country.   That son of his old age inconsistency is brushed aside and the great transitional point in the Joseph part of Genesis is touched upon early with the introduction of the most famous bit of men’s wearing apparel in all literature. 

The priestly account of Joseph as a youth make him sound like a self-centered twit: he dreams of his father and brothers serving in obedience to him, he obviously did not tend the flocks much, for he was baffled as to where his brothers could be tending the sheep (Genesis 37:15-16), and he was prone  to wearing makeup.  (The setting is in Canaan, not West Hollywood.)  When Joseph finally figures out where his brothers have camped, and they see him in his gaudy coat coming near, exasperation flares and they yearn to kill him.  The wiser brothers Reuben and Judah  point out the sin in doing this, so they just strip him naked and toss him into a snake and scorpion infested hole in the ground.  Of course he is spared deadly bites of scorpions and snakes by divine intervention, but he was not lifted out of the hole he was in, otherwise he wouldn’t have had the trip to Egypt.

Ultimately Joseph falls into the hands of passing traders who haul him out of the hole and sell him to the Egyptian Potiphar, captain of the guard. (Uh-oh.)  Meanwhile his brothers tell Jacob that Joseph is dead and show Jacob the multicolored coat which they had smeared with animal blood.  Here story elements are inserted about Judah,  the alleged ancestor-to-be of the southern kingdom, to give the impression of a passage of time and raise reader suspense of Joseph’s fate.  Apparently Potiphar was  pleased with his purchase because he had made Joseph the overseer of his house by the opening  of chapter 39.  But then Joseph’s dreamy ways and seductive charm led to a run-in with his benefactor: he had spurned the lust of Potiphar’s wife who wanted to lay with him—but Joseph was not interested. 

Joseph, apparently, had no occasion to learn that a woman scorned can be potential trouble.  Anyway, Potiphar’s wife instigated a setting to make it look as though the intimacy that she had hoped for had actually taken place, and made sure Potiphar saw the carefully placed props that she had arranged.  Potiphar felt betrayed!  Joseph got tossed into the slammer and Joseph found himself sharing cell space with Pharaoh’s butler and baker.  It seems that finding reliable household help was not any easier in ancient Egypt than it is today.   Finding themselves deprived of their accustomed routines, they entered into a three-way conversation, and exchanged their dreams.  Joseph interpreted the butler’s dream and the butler was relieved.  But Pharaoh’s poor baker was distressed to learn that he would have to give up his head to Pharaoh.  News of Joseph’s uncanny interpretation technique quickly came to Pharaoh’s attention, and the rest, as they say, is history.  The Pharaoh had had a recurring dream that troubled him, and Joseph interpreted it as meaning there were to be seven years of famine, for which Pharaoh should make preparations for his people’s sake.  And after seven years of bounty, from which Pharaoh had caused all surplus to be saved, the famine struck.  And in gratitude the Pharaoh made sure that Joseph was kept well supplied with eyeshadow. 

The famine was worldwide and it came to pass that father Jacob sent all his sons but the youngest, Benjamin, to Egypt to buy grain.  By now the Pharaoh had said to Joseph, “Thou shalt be over my house, and according unto thy word shall all my people be ruled: only in the throne will I be greater than thou.  And Pharaoh said unto Joseph, See, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt.  And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand, and arrayed him in vestures of fine linen, and put a gold chain about his neck.” (Genesis 41:40-42).  Joseph felt more honored than a queen.  “And Pharaoh called Joseph’s name Zaphnath-paaneh; and he gave him to wife Asenath the daughter of Potipherah, priest of On.”  Joseph was thirty years old by now, and decided it was politically wise to marry. 

As the famine raged over the world, people from all lands went to Egypt, and Joseph’s ten brothers came into Joseph’s presence seeking to purchase grain.  They did not recognize Joseph in all his finery, but a bit of the old peevishness flares up in him at the sight of them bowing down before him.  To observe his brothers longer he accused them as coming  to Egypt as spies.  After playing sport with them for a number of days he sent them back to Canaan with supplies of grain and told them they would not see his face again until they brought back the younger brother, Benjamin, as proof that they were not spies.  Eventually everything gets ironed out, and when Joseph reveals himself to his half-brothers he says, “And God sent me before you to preserve you a posterity in the earth, and to save your (prototype) lives by a great deliverance” (Genesis 45:6).  Father Jacob/Israel then comes to Egypt, and after a time in that land he approached death, and he gave a blessing to his twelve sons that sound peculiarly like a summary of the twelve signs of the zodiac. 

Chapter 50 ends with Joseph’s death, but before he dies he tells his brothers “…God will surely visit you, and bring you out of this land unto the land which he sware to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.”  With this touching denouement only those privileged to ancient teachings are told that primal elements are to be activated toward stable configurations that enables them to pass over into visible matter entities.  The continuing Creation saga then dramatizes the advance of energy into matter with parallel stories in Exodus and Numbers. (The book of Leviticus, jammed in between Exodus and Numbers, is entirely priest centered, interrupting the flow of the storyline to promote the illusion of priestly authority over the people.  The only narrative in this self-promotional text is on the destruction of Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu, with God’s approval, for alleged violations of laws after they were consecrated as priests. Leviticus 10 in regard to Exodus 6:23.)

 That the Joseph story is set within the pre-physical energy planes (as are all stories of Genesis) was affirmed early on with the fabled coat of  many colors.  Consider: Joseph personifies developing planetary systems at the stage just before energy transforms into matter, which is why he is portrayed as the son of Jacob’s old age.  So the coat that is furnished to Joseph by the previous developmental stage (personified with the character of Jacob) represents the energy aura that radiates around a manifesting form.  And that field of identifying energy is scientifically measurable around all material things.  And figuratively, energy is the sleeve that surrounds all matter forms, so an even older version of the Joseph story in which Jacob gave Joseph a long-sleeved tunic carried the same meaning.  In addition, there is occult meaning carried within the character’s name: the name Joseph means “builder,” so Joseph represents the molecular involvement that culminates as matter.  Christians should remember the meaning in the name Joseph when it is given as the surrogate father of Jesus—who just happened to be characterized as a carpenter.

Alleged Patriarch Jacob/Israel

Posted in Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, faith, random, religion, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , on October 16, 2010 by chouck017894

The Genesis account of Jacob revolves around the third person of the Hebrew Scripture’s trinity (Abram/Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob/Israel).  Jacob is regarded as a major patriarch in Hebrew scripture.  In considering stories from Genesis, we should always remember that the word genesis is Latin from the Greek, and refers to generation, origin, and birth—not history.  Jacob, like his grandfather Abraham before him, was allegedly promised that the multitude of his descendents were to be given possession of Canaan.  The 7th century BCE priest-authors of these tales made it sound as though the Israelites (never defined as Hebrew) had been issued holy land-title to a specific region on planet Earth.  When consulting the more ancient texts on cosmology and astronomy upon which these accounts were structured, it is shown that much of the Jacob myth revolves around ancient astronomical references dressed in occult style: so taking sacred language at face value is precarious. 

Jacob is cast as the twin brother of Esau, thus these characters are personification of the polar activity that is necessary for Creation.  Of the twins born to Isaac and Rebekah it is related that Esau was “first-born,” and like Adam was “red all over.”  Legend says he thrust out his hand from the womb and the midwife wrapped a red thread around his wrist, saying, “This came first.”  But Jacob, following after, “took hold on Esau’s heel” (Genesis 25:26), and thus the first hint of a struggle for domination is introduced into the tale.  And by eight short verses later Esau has sold his “birthright” to Jacob for a bowl of pottage.  With that sale of “birthright” the chapter ends.  Chapter 26 opens with a line that is vital in understanding world condition that influenced several Genesis myths; it says,  “And there was a famine  in the land, besides the famine that was in the days of Abraham.”    

The name Jacob is translated from the Hebrew Yakub, from, yak meaning “unity,” or “one,” in recognition of the singular source of all things.  His name being changed later to Israel signifies the plurality with which the Life Principle is to be expressed in matter-life.  For this reason the priest-authors personified Jacob as the father of the twelve patriarchal principles that had once been taught in ancient star lore.  We still know remnants of that star lore as the twelve signs of the zodiac.  What this means is that Jacob/Israel is not any verifiable historical ancestor of any specific people, but represents the Life Principle through which creative energy is brought forth as defined but diverse life forms.

Later (chapter 27), as father Isaac’s eyesight has failed and he thinks he is dying, he assumed it was time to bless his eldest son, Esau, with “birthrights.”  But Isaac’s beloved wife, Rebekah, counseled the son Jacob, whom she favored, to deceive Isaac so Jacob would receive the blessing intended for Esau.  Dishonesty was thus rewarded, and such is the ethics handed down  to us as holy writ.  By the next chapter Isaac learns of the deception but cannot retract it, which is not due to any code of honor of keeping one’s word; it simply underlines the irrevocable process of nature which declares what is done is done.  These story incidents are despicable when related to human conduct, but this is in Genesis so we are presented personifications of cosmological actions.  This is not, as implied, a sequential storyline; it is but a parallel situation that is used repeatedly in all Genesis myths because the action disguises pre-physical energy development toward matter.

After stealing Esau’s birthright, Jacob is sent away by Isaac to “…Padan-aram, to the house of Bethuel (a variation of Bethel) thy mother’s father; and take thee a wife from thence of the daughter of Laban thy mother’s brother” (Genesis 28:2).  By verse 10 “…Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran.”  Hidden here are subtle clues of the myth’s inspiration.  The word beer refers to a “well,” and sheba means “seven.”  So Jacob starts his movement through the seven primordial energy dimensions on his way to becoming a self-defined energy form.  At this point we read that Jacob “…lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night (through the primordial dimensions) because the sun was set…”  Yes, energies were in the process of becoming set as the Sun—its predetermined form of concentrated energy was becoming visibly manifest.  As this was developing, the energy-form characterized by Jacob had to take “…of the stones of that place…” and use them for his pillow.  How strange.  Jacob is characterized as a deliberative and possessive individual, so it is out of character that he would not take with him something to sleep upon during an overnight journey.  No explanation is forthcoming; he makes-do by laying his head upon a pile of stones.  And then he has a mystifying dream in which a ladder is set upon the  earth “…and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it” (Genesis 28:12).  Strangely, Jacob’s dream was not exclusive to Jacob, for the Persians also had their scala coeli, or ladder of seven steps upon which the souls on earth descended and ascended. 

When Jacob awoke from his dream he declared, “How dreadful is this place! this is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”  “This place” happened to refer to the pre-physical dimensions through which each energy-form takes up the hard responsibility of physical production.  The “gate of heaven” referred to the dimensions of creative energy through which the “Lord” (laws of Creation) causes energies to take on identity as matter form. 

Later at Haran, Jacob is supposed to have labored seven years for his uncle Laban in payment to marry Laban’s daughter Rachel (the name means “God’s ewe), but is tricked into marrying the older sister Leah.  (Again deception is the championed way to acquire something.)  So Jacob then labored another seven years to wed his beloved Rachel.  He is presented as so virtuous, but while he toiled for Laban, he managed to produce four sons by the “hated” Leah–Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah.  But Jacob earned Rachel, and made ready to depart, but not before he acquired a goodly part of Laban’s herds through practiced deception before taking off with his spoils.  In morals Rachel was no better than Jacob for she stole her father’s household gods.  Laban, incensed at that, tracked them down and searched through all the baggage to no avail, for Rachel had sat on them and pretended impatience with her father as he searched.  All this drama, remember, is set in pre-physical energy dimensions, so the household gods of Laban represent archetypal forms that are being carried toward manifestation as matter forms.

  After Jacob married Rachel, she remained barren, so Jacob had another son by Rachel’s maid, Bilhah, and Rachel named the boy Naphtali.  Then jealous Leah gave her maid Zilpah to Jacob to breed, and the maid bore the son,  Gad, then bore another son who was named Asher.  The breeding marathon continued, and  Leah bore a fifth son, Issachar; then a sixth son, Zebulun.  The seventh union with the hated Leah resulted in a daughter, Dinah.  After all that, God finally “remembered Rachel” (Genesis 30:22).  By verse 24 Rachel has a son, Joseph.

After considerable intrigues through chapters 30 to 35, God then commanded Jacob to return to Canaan, and Jacob headed straight for Bethel, house of God, the very same spot that Abram had camped and had his name changed to Abraham.  And Jacob, like Abram, has his name changed and became Israel.  Jacob then receives the same “covenant” as extended to Noah, Abraham and every other mythic character that reaches this transitional point in creation activity; their “seed” is blessed so that they may pass over into energy-as-matter form. 

The changing of names was standard in Pagan mythic tales to indicate the transubstantiation of primordial elements into a different atomic value.  (Refer to Abraham, Sarah and India post, September 2010).  In older Greek myth, for example, the god Apollo spoke through a priestess to Alkeids, saying, “From this day forth thy name shall no more be Alkeids but Herakles.”  Why the Greek story is scorned as “myth,” but the Hebrew Scripture version is to be accepted as truth and “history” is, shall we say, eccentric.  To recognize the mythic quality in the Genesis stories brings into question the legitimacy of claiming such characters as Abraham and Jacob/Israel as having been historical persons.  And without Abraham as an alleged historical ancestor the whole foundation of Judaism, Christianity and Islam stand upon quicksand.

As noted, the wife of Jacob, his beloved Rachel, was long barren, just as was the beloved sister-wife of Abraham, Saraha.  Indeed,  all the “barren” women in scriptural tales—Sari, Rachel, Rebekah, Elisabeth, etc.—personify primordial substance that remains inactive until endowed with creative energy.  It is only when primal energies involve as energy-substance that they develop generative capacity to involve further as matter form.

When Rachel gave birth to Joseph it indicates that a prototype energy-form has been established and all related creative energies then act in compliance.  By chapter 35 Rachel bears a second son, Benjamin, but dies in childbirth, thus conveniently removing her from the plot.  And, too, father Isaac soon dies, the mess with the twin brother Esau is absolved, and by chapter 27 emphasis falls upon Joseph, the first-born son to Jacob/Israel by Rachel with whom the book of Genesis is to conclude.

Myth of the Patriarch Isaac

Posted in Atheist, belief, Bible, culture, faith, freethought, history, random, religion, science, thoughts with tags , , , , , , , , , on October 11, 2010 by chouck017894

With the character of Isaac, we come to the second person of the Hebrew Scripture’s trinity (Abram/Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob/Israel).  The birth of Isaac (Genesis 21) is briefly covered in only eight verses.  He is depicted as having been born when Abraham and Sarah were in advanced years; something of an afterthought fulfillment of God’s promise to grant Abraham posterity.  And, typical of myth, little is recorded of Isaac’s formative years, jumping quickly, as myths always do, to how he was willing to be a sacrifice to Yahweh, but was spared that responsibility by the peculiar appearance of a ram provided by God to substitute as the ritual burnt offering (Genesis 22).  This attempted sacrifice is projected to have been sometime around 1898 BCE.  The story (the Agueda) of Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his only begotten son Isaac to the Lord has been of prime importance in Judaism, finding in it a reminder of the precariousness surrounding Isaac’s son, Jacob/Israel, having been chosen as progenitor: thus the Jewish New Year ritual commemorates the binding of Isaac.  And Christians accept the story as indicating the form of sacrifice that was expected of Jesus.  Strangely, few of these devout ones are aware of the story’s parallel to the Greek account in which Athamas attempted to sacrifice his son Phrixus to Zeus.  In that older tale, the sacrificial performance was interrupted by the unexpected arrival of Heracles and the miraculous appearance of a ram.  If the ram from that myth is recalled at all it is because it is the ram which had borne the Golden Fleece that in later myth inspired Jason and the Argonauts to undertake the holy quest of acquiring that pelt.  In Roman myth the god Saturn (god of sowing seed) was about to sacrifice his only begotten son to his father Uranus (who presided over primordial conditions), but was furnished a substitute.  In India, Siva, the third god of the Hindu triad, was about to sacrifice his son on a pyre when a rhinoceros was sent as a substitute.  But even older references to a ram caught in a thicket can be traced back to the fourth millennium BCE nation of Sumer where the theme was common in their art.

After Isaac’s dramatic escape from being an altar offering, and Sarah his mother dies to remove her from the plot, things jump quickly to how Isaac acquired his wife, Rebekah (Genesis 24).  Abraham was anxiously insistent that his son’s wife must come from his own people (primary elements), and to accomplish this Abraham’s older servant, Eliezer, was sent back to the city of Nahor where Abraham’s brother, Haran, lived.  Genesis 24:10 says, “And the servant took ten camels of the camels of his master, and departed…” to go to Nahor in Mesopotamia.  The timeframe in which a bride was sought for Isaac is traditionally placed at c. 1857 BCE.  Isaac then gets shuffled into more of secondary role, with prime attention placed on the servant and Rebekah’s family.

Abraham’s servant Eliezer encounter the lovely Rebekah while she is drawing water from a well.  In all biblical tales that have a well scene, it refers in  some way to the waters of life, and here Rebekah is drawing water to nourish the dimensions of energy-substance necessary for development as defined life forms.  This also explains why in Genesis 26:18 Isaac is portrayed as the well-digger.

Oddly, Rebekah, like Isaac’s mother Sarah, remains “barren.”  For a people so proud of their “begatting” power, this seems strange.  But if the material upon which these “history” tales were constructed are again consulted, the divine mystery is explained: Female characters in these tales always symbolize primordial energy-substance that is not yet activated with the genetic principle of life.   This comes from ancient cosmological lessons which taught of primal energy-substance forming as planets—and biological life does not bud out of these until settled into a defined form.  Thus Rebekah remained barren for twenty years, and Isaac had to pray to God to lift the curse, after which she was soon pregnant with twins.  But the fetuses were so competitive and struggled so with each other that Rebekah yearned for death.  And again  God says to Isaac exactly what he allegedly had said to Abraham (in Genesis 22:18); “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed (repeated to Isaac Genesis 26:4).  This is deliberately worded to make it seem that the Israelites, and by extension the Jews, glorify any nation they may inhabit.  History has not supported that idea.  Of the “seed” which is repeatedly stressed, God allegedly said this to Abram, not to Abraham: “And I will make thy seed as the dust of the earth: so that if a man can number the dust of the earth, then shall thy seed also be numbered (Genesis 13:16).  This is cosmic seed that is being blessed, i.e. the earth, which is why it had been stated, “For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and  to thy seed for ever” (verse 15).  It is, therefore, life which blesses all nations; it is not some land grant to some god-favored part of the human species as seems implied. 

 It is in chapter 26 that Isaac and Rebekah become embroiled in an episode involving “Abimelech king of the Philistines” that is like a distorted echo from the account of Abram’s wife, Sarai, taken into the king’s harem.  Isaac, like Abram, deceives the king, saying his lovely wife is his sister, but after the king discovers the immoral lie, Isaac is then rewarded with land ownership in Gerar!  From these examples from the “good  book” we are supposed to learn moral conduct and ethics?  The common excuse given for this alleged happening is that the use of deception was alright when Israelites were in danger abroad.  Huh?  All actions in the stories of Genesis take place in amoral primordial stages of Creation.

As is common in myth telling, time is surreal, and  Isaac has quickly become a near-blind old man (Genesis 27), and he is deceived by his son Jacob into giving Jacob the blessing of the firstborn that properly belonged to his twin brother Esau.  It is Rebekah that allegedly counseled Jacob into deceiving Isaac, and the reason for this assertion is that Rebekah, as we have seen, personifies the  process of energy-substance attaining materialization.  That process is not accomplished by deception, however,  but through involvement of primal energies.  Blind Isaac, although deceived, foresaw cosmological consequences, saying to Esau, “…and it shall come  to pass when thou shalt have the dominion, that thou shalt break his yoke from off thy neck (verse 40).  There is a secret of Creation processes hidden in Isaac’s words: It is that breaking the devotion to matter is the means of gaining higher potential.  The spiritual value in Isaac’s words rests in recognizing that focusing one’s consciousness on material things is the cause of most of life’s pains, conflicts and “sins.” 

With this, Isaac’s role is fulfilled, but the saga of primal energies forming into mass must advance so they may pass over into defined matter form.  But the time of famine (energies not yet defined), mentioned at the opening of chapter 26, was not yet over.  There it had said, “…there was a famine in the land, besides the first famine that was in the days of Abraham…”  It is here that Isaac’s son, Jacob, then moves to center stage.

Myth of Noah

Posted in agnoticism, Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, Christianity, culture, faith, random, religion, thoughts with tags , , , on October 7, 2010 by chouck017894

All Genesis myths were presented to make them appear as sequential happenings, but they are really parallel tales that personify aspects of the Creation processes.  The story of Noah, the “Flood,” and the ark is undoubtedly the most obvious mythic presentation.  The story of Noah appears in Genesis, the book of  beginnings, from chapters five through ten.  Chapter five begins, “This is the book of the generations of Adam,” and quickly moves from Seth, Adam and Eve’s last son, through an alleged genealogy listing to Methuselah and his son Lamech who “begat” Noah.  Methuselah is presented as having lived 969 years, and his son Lamech lived 182 years.  Thus is the illusion of time accounted for in mythological staging.

Noah, in many respects, is cast as the second Adam.  By chapter 6:9 God found Noah to be “…a just man and righteous in his generations…”  Some translations say he was perfect in his generations.  “In his generations” is the sacred language way to represent the energies that involve to produce formations in which life is to take on its creative potential.  This is why in the next verse it is quickly added that Noah walked with God, which is the mythographers’ way of stressing that the story is set in the primordial stages of Creation.  But God allegedly judged the whole earth to be corrupt and filled with violence: which really refers to the violent energy aspects issuing out of Source which function as an amoral creative power and therefore the prototypes of planetary formation are yet to be established as the supportive means of matter manifestation.

The cleansing “Flood” of the Noah myth explains in an entertainment way the condensing of electrodynamics configurations that flood out of Source and are borne into visibility.  This process of Creation forces can be assessed as the rescuing and delivering element that is buoyed upon unlimited waters (primal energies).  This rescuing and delivering element has served as the motivation for over four hundred myths of world inundation in which chosen ones were carried in an ark, chest or ship to be cast upon the summit of matter.  Hindu myth has the vessel Argha; Greek myth has the Cista or the Argo; scriptural myth calls it the ark—a word borrowed from Egyptian language, etc.  The Life Principle is borne into matter, and this development is then  personified with regional names.  In Babylonian myth the Life Principle is personified as Utnapishtim; to the Persians it was Yima; the Chaldeans knew it as Xesuthras; the Greeks named it Deucalion; the Hindu version was Vaivasvata; the Mexican personification was Nata; and the Hebrew myth personified it as Noah.  Unfortunately, not even the name Noah is original with the Hebrews; it was taken from the Chaldean name Nuah, which served to identify the third person of the Chaldean Trinity as well as being the third sign of their Zodiac.

The “Flood”of Hebrew scriptures is said to have occurred in Noah’s 600th year (Genesis 7:11).  The number six has a tradition of representing perfection and/or fulfillment.  God created all things in six days, for example.  Noah, like Adam and other starring characters of Genesis, is one of the many personifications of the Life Principle that is used throughout Genesis, only this time it dramatizes its movement upon the violent aspects of the Creation energies that flood out of Source toward manifestation as matter.  And as with Adam, God’s first command to Noah and his sons after the flood (Genesis 9:1) is exactly the same as the command to Adam and Eve: Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.

The highlight of the Noah tale is his implied fall from grace, which occurs very soon after touching upon Mount Ararat (solid matter).  The  first thing that Noah allegedly did, beside build an altar and offer up prayers of thanksgiving, was to plant a vine which, by evening, had borne fruit from which Noah had already made potent wine.  Perhaps all he did was transplant a mature vine carried in the ark, and yet there is still the problem of making a full-bodied wine by evening.  Anyway, Noah got blotto-drunk.  In other words, primal energies have been transformed into the “wine of life” and Noah becoming intoxicated signifies his embodiment of matter life.  This is identical in meaning as other Genesis characters, Jacob for instance, falling asleep and thereafter assuming a new identity (Israel/matter).  In this version, however, the Noah character personifies planetary life.

As the energy manifestation as a new planetary identity, he is portrayed as in a stupor with life and is naked.  The story element of his sons walking backwards to cover their father’s nakedness simply personifies the planet being clothed with vegetation.  His sons, Japheth and Shem, represent the still manifesting pre-physical energy elements with which the Life Principle is clothed as matter, which is why the sons are said to move backwards to do it (Genesis 9:23)—they cannot yet see the evolutionary results of their actions.  Feeling himself being lightly covered, “Noah awoke from his wine, and knew what his little son had done unto him.” (Genesis 9:24)  Discovering someone naked is not something that is done to them.  If things have seemed a little strange so far, it now becomes bizarre.  Noah’s “little son” is cursed by Noah for accidentally seeing Noah naked.  But it is the grandson of Noah, named Canaan, son of Ham, who receives the curse!   Something is being covered up here, and it isn’t Noah.

There are a number of myths from different ancient cultures with a similar plotline, but they adhered more closely to scientific principles of the creative process in their telling.  In those myths the elder god, as he lay sleeping, is castrated by his youngest son.  In Greek myth, for example, the young god Cronos (personified time, which is relative only to the matter plane) castrated his sleeping father Uranus (personification of first light that attends elementary conditions).  In an older scriptural version, Noah suffered the same fate of castration by his son Ham, but this was purged from “revealed” word;—and in the process the meaning of matter elements being severed from primordial conditions was removed and replaced with the absurd sense of false shame for being seen in the natural state.  God hadn’t seen anything wrong with nakedness in the Garden of Eden.  The priest-authors attempted some originality in their desperation to clean up the borrowed myth elements, which is why the grandson, who had not seen Noah naked, illogically wound up receiving the curse.  The curse laid upon Canaan was that he was condemned to be the servant  to his uncles Shem and Japheth.   If any logic can be said to be found in this, it is that the grandson of Noah personifies the next developmental phase in lifeforms, thus figuratively he “serves” them by continuing the energy process into matter. 

Noah’s tale then gets a quick conclusion, saying that he lived 350 years after the Flood and died at the age of 950.

Related post: Possible Background of Flood Myths

Possible Background of Flood Myths

Posted in Atheist, Bible, history, nature, prehistory, random, religion, thoughts with tags , , on October 7, 2010 by chouck017894

A world flood is not something that the Hebrew assemblers of scripture or their ancestors could have personally experienced.  The account of flood-like conditions presented in the Noah myth was “borrowed” from a Chaldean source, and then possibly flavored with details from Chinese flood accounts.  Remember, for generations before the 7th century BCE composing of scripture there had been vast migrations of people everywhere due to unsettled conditions around the world.  So the authors would know, if only at random, the myths of far east people.  The most likely historical time of the alleged worldwide flood would be c. 20,000 BCE when glacial problems and polar imbalance resulted in planetary disaster.

As recently as 20,000 BCE the North Pole of planet Earth was situated in the area now known as Hudson Bay in NE Canada.  This was the age of massive glaciations, and around 19,000 BCE (most likely 18,612 BCE) the tremendous weight of the glaciers began to strain the planet’s landmasses to their breaking point.  The total volume of ice that then covered the Northern Hemisphere has been estimated to have been around six million cubic miles.  There was, in addition, extensive glaciations in the Southern Hemisphere.  Consequently the  oceans of the world were around four hundred feet lower than in our modern world.  This was the setting for an unimaginable catastrophe for the planet.

For some reason in this period of time there was a sudden increase by about six to ten degrees centigrade in the temperature of the surface waters in the Atlantic Ocean.  This may have been caused by internal friction as land plates collapsed from the weight of the glaciers.  The great volumes of ice that had taken around forty thousand years to accumulate began to melt.  As billions of tons of ice became liberated, various sections of the Earth’s crust that had been pressed down by the weight began to rise, sometimes with sudden disastrous results.  There had been clear signs everywhere that planet-wide changes were building.   

Ancient Assyrian clay texts give an account of pre-deluge conditions; in that account the god Enlil ordered that a famine should prevail in the world, and so a lack of rain followed which led to the failure of the irrigation systems. Rather rapidly human life became so desperate that people were eating grass, but even plant life quickly became depleted.  Everywhere people begged heaven for water.  Families broke apart in sheer madness of hunger, and eventually this resulted in cannibalism.  As inconceivable as it may seem, the bulk of the world population that had long endured such drought and suffering would perish in an onslaught of water

As the ancient ice melted, glacier slippage began across the Northern Hemisphere, and landmasses started to bobble upward.  In the Southern Hemisphere a continent-sized chunk of ice plunged into the South Polar region which set off horrendous consequences.  An immense tidal wave was suddenly triggered in the Antarctic waters, and the avalanche of water rushed northward into the waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans.  This sudden change generated massive violent storms that released torrents of rain that swept ahead of the tidal wave.  According to the ancient clay texts, a great flooding of Earth was loosed “…on the seventeenth day of the second month to the month of Addar”—or lasting to the twelfth month.  In an older Noah version, Noah opened the hatch of the ark on the first day of the first month, which corresponds to the watery catastrophe lasting into the twelfth month.  So the inundating waters prevailed for five months.

Of this disastrous period the more ancient Sumerian Kings List reported that 120 “shars” had been wiped away virtually overnight by the flood.  A “shar,” researchers tell us, was equivalent to 3,600 years!  So 120 “shars” amount to 432,000 years!  This happens to match exactly with claims made by the Babylonian priest-astronomer named Berosus.  Berosus, using archives in the temple of Bel at Babylon, wrote in Greek three books of Babylonian-Chadean history.  Berosus died c 260 BCE.

When the North Pole shifted c. 20,000 BCE from where it had been located in what is today the Hudson Bay region, and moved to its present location, incomprehensible havoc overwhelmed the entire Earth from a double whammy.  The planet’s relatively thin crust was strained everywhere.  And the greatest continental rift that occurred in that timeframe is still visible down the length of the African continent.  It stretches from about 36 degrees north latitude in Syria to about 28 degrees south latitude in east Africa.  The jagged fracture line almost follows along a meridian, stretching for over one-third of the distance from pole to pole.  The sinking of this strip of Earth’s crust created the longest land valley on the planet.  This fracture begins in Syria, in the  Orontes River Valley, and jags back at Baalbek (Lebanon), extending to the Litani River Valley.  From there the break-line traces to Lake Hulch in Palestine, continues along the Jordan River to the Sea of Galilee, and on to the Dead Sea.  From there the rift courses along the Araba Valley to the Gulf of Aqaba in the Red Sea and extends across this area into Africa. It is here that the rift is exposed in its enormity, tracing from the Sabie River in Transvaal and extending eastward to the Gulf of Aden, and then westward to Tanganyika and the Upper Nile.  This great rift culminates in the central Congo, marked by Lake Moeris and Lake Upemba.

Is it simply coincidence that a number of the sites mentioned along this great rift happen to play prominent roles in Hebrew and Christian scripture?

Related post: Myth of Noah

Assembling Bible Style History

Posted in agnoticism, Astronomy, Atheism, Atheist, belief, Bible, culture, faith, freethought, history, life, random, religion, thoughts with tags , , , , on October 3, 2010 by chouck017894

The extraordinary “history” of ancient Israel and Judah that make up the early parts of Hebrew Scriptures was composed by Yahweh priest-authors in the small village of Jerusalem in the 7th century BCE.  The alleged historical saga that recounted Moses and the deliverance from Egyptian slavery up to and through the episodic accounts of the rise and fall of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah cannot be supported by either genuine historical documents from the times or by archeological science.  Indeed, the alleged history  is a product of propaganda that implied godly protection of a small segment of the world population and was intended to inspire caution among the heavily armed neighboring countries of Assyria and Egypt from mounting attacks against Judah.  The composed history also served to inspire a unity among the widely varied people around Jerusalem through the implication that they all shared a common ancestry, the Israelites, whom Moses had allegedly led to the borders of Canaan. 

At the time of the feverish assembling of the early books of scriptural history, the kingdom of Israel to the north of Jerusalem had recently fallen to the Assyrians, and the alarmed priests of Yahweh, the scribes, elders, king and members of his court sought any means to protect their independence.  At their disposal was a rich collection of literary works, considered ancient even then—some of which contained remarkable cosmological and astronomical knowledge that were not completely understood by them, but which were highly admired.  The importance of ancient cosmological and astronomical lore in the 7th century BCE should not be underestimated, because for many generations the heavens had not alway presented a peaceful appearance. (See related post, Threats From Heaven, Sept. 2010.)

Jerusalem, in this 7th century BCE timeframe, was not a bustling city as many imagine: the village sat perched on a narrow ridge that bordered along a steep, rocky ravine.  The hill country around the region was sparsely settled, populated mainly by shepherds and cultivators of small, cleared plots of land.  And add to this scene the pugnacious priests of Yahweh who adamantly insisted that their Temple must remain untarnished from any association with any of the numerous sanctuaries throughout the Near East.  The priests of Yahweh, who controlled more social and judicial power over the people than even the king, would resist any ecumenical willingness to conduct relations with others if it required honoring any potential allies who believed in false deities.  As priestly power became stronger, the numerous rural shrines that had been set up through the region were systematically destroyed under the propaganda that they were the same sources of evil that had caused the fall of the  kingdom of Israel.  This purification of the countryside left only the Jerusalem Temple—which the priests declared was imbued with special holiness—upon which the populace could focus their desire for heavenly attention.

Jerusalem grew with refugees arriving from the occupied kingdom of Israel, and the village in this timeframe expanded to cover approximately 150 acres.  And the political ambitions of the priests and the king flared accordingly.  Their city had become the center of Israelite consciousness.  Through the program of inventing a history of the Israelites, the sudden collapse of the kingdom of Israel was widely seen even by the new citizens to be the result of some direct and purer relationship of Jerusalem with God.  Then and only then did the region take on the mantle of “Holy Land,” and so impressive was the sales pitch that the whole world has been willing to accept the assertion for around three thousand years.  But archeological science has shown that there really were no divine circumstances that led to ancient Jerusalem attaining such star quality.  It simply involved a bit of calculated hype, a bit of rigorous purging of competing faiths, and taking advantage of the insecurity of the refugees and displaced peasants.  This is not said in the spirit of deconstruction, but to point out that claims of supernatural nonsense are not really necessary for acknowledging that something greater than ourselves energizes all that exists.  Like Nature, which is the bearing principle of that power, it is indifferent to what it creates or how it is used.  That is not saleable merchandise for the faith system merchants, and so the farce continues.