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The importance of the king
The state and its institutions were parts of the total divine order, Maat, or justice. The state and its institutions and the king (Pharaoh) were part of Maat, and at the same time they had to act according to the rules of the Maat. Likewise, all human beings were part of this system, and could not escape. And they had to respect the state and the state-sanctioned cult.
The strongest myth and cult of Egypt, the one of Osiris and Horus, works as a legitimization of the kingship.
The king was theoretically the highest priest in Egypt. But many of the rituals were performed in his place by local high priests, choirs of temple singers and lower ranks of priests.
Jeremiah seems to be commenting on this very passage:
How do ye say, We are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain.
The wise men are ashamed, they are dismayed and taken: lo, they have rejected the word of the Lord; and what wisdom is in them? (Jeremiah 8:8—9)19
With respect to the law and those who had charge of it, Jeremiah comments that "they that handle the law knew me not" (Jeremiah 2:8).
Therefore, behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that steal my words every one from his neighbour. (Jeremiah 23:30)
And the burden of the Lord shall ye mention no more: for every man's word shall be his burden; for ye have perverted the words of the living God, of the Lord of hosts our God. (Jeremiah 23:36)
Deuteronomy relates the following: "And the Lord spake unto you out of the midst of the fire: ye heard the voice of the words, but saw no similitude; only ye heard a voice" (Deuteronomy 4:12). Barker notes the direct contradiction with the account in Exodus 24:9—11, which reports that Moses, Aaron, and seventy elders of Israel "saw the God of Israel." Jeremiah speaks as one who has seen:
For who hath stood in the counsel of the Lord, and hath perceived and heard his word? who hath marked his word, and heard it? (Jeremiah 23:18; compare theophanies in Isaiah 6 and 1 Enoch)
But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. (Jeremiah 23:22)
Deuteronomy says that "The secret things belong unto the Lord our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law" (Deuteronomy 29:29). Further, it explains that "For this commandment which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee, neither is it far off. It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it?" (Deuteronomy 30:11—12).
4 Creator Gods
In ancient Mesopotamia, the facts of nature were attributed to the workings of divine forces. Thus, there were many gods and goddesses, including 4 creator gods who were themselves created by the forces of Taimat and Abzu, who had emerged from a primordial chaos of water. [See the Greek story of creation out of Chaos.]
1. The highest of the 4 gods was the sky-god An, the over-arching bowl of heaven.
2. Next came Enlil who could either produce raging storms or act to help man.
3. Nin-khursag was the earth goddess.
4. The 4th god was Enki, the water god and patron of wisdom.
These four did not act alone, but consulted with an assembly of 50, the Annunaki. In addition to these gods and goddesses, the world was populated with innumerable spirits and demons.
* Lists of Mesopotamian Gods
How the Gods Helped Mankind
The gods bound people together in their social groups and were believed to have provided what they needed to survive. The Sumerians developed stories and festivals to explain and harness help for their physical environment. Once a year came the new year and with it the Sumerians thought the gods decided what would happen to mankind for the coming year.
Otherwise, the gods and goddesses were more concerned with their own feasting, drinking, fighting, and arguing. But they could be prevailed upon to help on occasion if ceremonies were performed to their liking. The priests were responsible for the sacrifices and rituals that were essential for the help of the gods. In addition, since property belonged to the gods, it was administered by the priests. This made the priests valuable and important figures in their communities. And so, the priestly class developed.
The word “apocalyptic” comes from a Greek word apokalypsis, meaning revealing or unveiling. In the Bible, Daniel in the Old Testament and Revelation in the New Testament are the most clear examples of apocalypses. But there are many other books from the Jewish and Christian world that can be classified as apocalypses. In addition, other books of the Bible contain apocalyptic passages.
What makes a particular writing an apocalypse? Apocalypses are stories that use symbols and visions to describe how people received understanding of spiritual realities from heavenly beings. Human beings are given this knowledge by a vision that reveals the truth God wants them to know. Often, the meanings of these visions are difficult to grasp and are explained by an angel.
Apocalyptic visions reveal hidden truths about God, the course of human life, and the spiritual world. These visions often express or describe the meaning of human history, show insights about the nature of life after death, or tell of God’s coming judgment on humanity. An important part of God’s judgment is a final confrontation between the forces of evil and the forces of good. In this final battle, God defeats the evil forces forever, and brings about a world ruled by justice and mercy. See, for example, Revelation 20–22.
What does the word ‘Islam’ mean?
It has two meanings, peace and a conscious and willing submission to the one Almighty God, Allah. This submission requires Muslims to act on Allah’s Holy word (as written in the text of the Qur’an) and also on what Allah’s Prophet, Muhammad, entreated followers to do.
Peace is achieved by getting rid of one’s ego and submitting to Allah.
1. The belief in one God (Allah) and the belief that the Prophet Muhammad is his messenger.
2. Praying to Allah five times each day.
3. Fasting during the month of Ramadan.
5. Hajj – the once in a lifetime pilgrimage to Mecca (if one can afford it financially and one is physically fit enough to make the journey).
These are called pillars because Muslims liken them to a building, which needs all of the pillars to be of an equal height and strength. Therefore, it is necessary to follow all of the pillars of faith.
In addition to the pillars, the moral codes of Islam demand truthfulness, honesty and many other qualities which make a ‘good’ human being. Once all of these are in place, the ‘building’ is complete and perfect.
So, I just wanted to ask- why haven't people created a new religion in light of this fact? That the religions of old are oppressive... yet we follow them anyways? Perhaps the newer ones need not to be as strict.
in 1978, a mystic informed Hanne and Maurice Strong that "the Baca would become the center for a new planetary order which would evolve from the economic collapse and environmental catastrophes that would sweep the globe in the years to come." Hanne and Maurice Strong created the Manitou Foundation in 1988, a New Age institute on or near the Baca Ranch. On the website it reads: "In the mid 1990’s, Manitou and specialists of The Conservation Fund, with generous support of Laurance Rockefeller [the late UFO/Crop Circle investigations funder] and the Jackson Hole Preserve, devoted several years to extensive studies of Manitou’s mountain properties, culminating in the creation of the Manitou Habitat Conservation Plan (MHCP)." At the ranch there are representatives of many of the world's religions, spiritual movements, and New Age sects, including the Catholic and Protestant churches, Buddhist monks, and representatives of different variations on Hinduism. A circular temple has been built on the ranch where the missionaries of different religions can contemplate with each other. If you look at the floor plan you'll see the building is a complex flower (the representatives sit in circles within this flower) within a Celtic Cross/Hindu Kiakra. The latter two represent a divine sexual union. The building seems to be a Rosy Cross, which can be interpreted as having the same meaning. In that last case, the color of the rose would correspond with the nearby mountain range: Sangre de Cristo, meaning 'Blood of Christ', the sacred name the Spanish settlers decided to reserve for it. Nicholas de Vere, former head of the British Dragon Court, wrote: "The Rose represents... the magical menstrual flow of Solomon's beloved." George Hunt, who visited the place, asked to a Catholic priest there, father Victor, what the purpose of the temple is: "We contemplate on the sexual union of the church with God... that's our mission, because we're fulfilling a role that the pope wants us to fulfill. I don't know, we're just contemplating on the sexual union of the church with God." www.isgp.eu...