The Image of Baphomet: Upsetting Folks Since 1855.

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posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 11:10 PM
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Hello ATS,

Are you familiar with this image?



It has been used to death, right? It has been used by heavy metal bands and by publishers of shiny books on the 'occult' and right now the image is gracing a mildly controversial ad that sometimes comes up on the ATS homepage.

This will be old news to some, but for those that do not know or possibly have a passing interest in what the big deal is, I thought that I would go over the image in the hopes of letting the air out of it.

The image of Baphomet, as you see it posted there, was created by 'Eliphas Levi' in 1855 and published in his book Dogme et Rituel de la Haute Magie ( The Dogman and Ritual of High Magic).



Eliphas Levi's real name was Alphonse Louis Constant and he was the son of a Paris shoemaker. Alphonse was planning to be a Catholic priest but he ended up falling for a girl. He wrote and circulated some 'radical' tracts after that and was imprisoned a couple of times for his efforts.



The thing to realize when considering the Baphomet image, as created by 'Levi' and posted above, is that it is a product of its time and the zeitgeist thereof. The era that sort of comprised the 75 years or so from 1850 to 1925 was greatly characterized by a world interest and fascination with the hidden and the occult. Europe and America were just beginning to learn about the mysterious 'East' and Egypt. It was incredibly fashionable.

Freemasonry was super popular and it was especially popular to be involved in some type of 'Templarized' Freemasonry and, for instance, there is the Grand Orient de France founded in 1733.

It is important to know this while trying to place 'Levi's' image in perspective. Because Alphonse was trying to sell books and blow minds. All of the authors of this stuff from that era were vying to be the authority on the Hermetic Mysteries and Alchemy. It was incredibly fashionable.

That is all that you are really seeing there. He was trying to sell books. Just like anyone else that has ever or is even now using the image. Another good example of how the impact of the image has been exploited, is shown in how it was used as a lever to propel the bogus Albert Pike quote from the Taxil Hoax in the 1890's.



I am sure that there are other examples. My whole point is that Levis image was meant to impress from the beginning, Levi couches the presentation of the thing as though it is supposed to be 'revelatory', but really it is just a bunch of fiction out of his head meant to sell books and garner credibility and attention.

In other words the image has no lineage before or beyond 'Eliphas Levi'. It is completely a product of his imagination.

I will not, at the moment, post Levi's own writing concerning his baphomet, but, I would just like to express a couple of things concerning Levi's book and this image that it contains (posted above) as it stands as a literary entity.

Firstly, I hope I have made it clear that this image is entirely the creation of Levi and despite what he has to say about it, it seems not likely at all and totally unverifiable as to whether or not he was drawing the knowledge from some 'source' ancient or otherwise.

Secondly, it is important to keep in mind that the Grand Daddy of literary hoaxes, Aleister Crowley, was all over the translations of Levi into English, this makes the whole thing suspect IMO.

Thirdly: any 'statements' made by Templars concerning the appearance and other details of the supposed baphomet of the Templars came under duress, at best, and anyway, we are never going to know or even really get around the arguments, I have come to believe, anyhow, so why should we believe Levi? After all, that is what he claims to be showing us, in the end, the actual image 'worshiped' by the Templars.

So if no one has done so in 157 years, I call bull#, there is no way that Levi could possibly know, even if there was a Baphometa.

So there ya go, ATS, don't let the silly old goat footed thing bug you, if it does.

X.
edit on 1-9-2012 by Xoanon because:





posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 11:28 PM
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In the end (Mother?
), to put it in a nutshell...

Yes, there is a such thing as a Baphomet, as it is portrayed in the well-used image posted above. And it is 100% the product of the fevered imagination of Alphonse Louis Constant.



posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 11:32 PM
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Interesting post. While this image /symbol was "manufactured" (or more properly "synthesized") by Levi, it does have some precedence in symbology before levi. One association is with Pan, which goes quite a way back. I'll give a quote from the wikipedia page for "Baphomet"



Lévi's now-familiar image of a "Sabbatic Goat" shows parallels with works by the Spanish artist Francisco Goya, who more than once painted a "Witch's Sabbath"; in the version ca. 1821-23, El gran cabrón now at the Prado, a group of seated women offer their dead infant children to a seated goat. In Margaret Murray's survey of The Witch-Cult in Western Europe, the devil was said to appear as "a great Black Goat with a Candle between his Horns".[47] Francisco Goya, Witches' Sabbath, 1821-1823. Lévi called his image "The Goat of Mendes", presumably following Herodotus' account[48] that the god of Mendes—the Greek name for Djedet, Egypt—was depicted with a goat's face and legs. Herodotus relates how all male goats were held in great reverence by the Mendesians, and how in his time a woman publicly copulated with a goat.[49] E. A. Wallis Budge writes, At several places in the Delta, e.g. Hermopolis, Lycopolis, and Mendes, the god Pan and a goat were worshipped;



posted on Sep, 1 2012 @ 11:52 PM
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Great post.

It is only a piece of art; and not a bad one at that. If people get the wrong meaning from it, that is their problem.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:22 AM
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reply to post by Xoanon
 


Great post on a very misconceived symbol. In an effort to make it seem mundane, I understand why you would downplay Eliphas's and Crowley's input but I wouldn't say it was created just to sell books.

What most people don't understand is that it actually has a very enlightened meaning to it. It represents the male/female aspects of the universe. Or black/white, negative/positive, etc. I use Baphomet's imagery much as I would use a Yin-Yang. When I direct any ritual towards good ole' Baphomet, it's usually as a call for balance or compensation. It's a powerful symbol when the time is taken to study it beyond the stigma.

It's so easy for Christians to point to anything they don't like and to say "yeah... sure, that's what the devil looks like!" and completely dismiss it having any roll in anything not relating to them.
edit on 2-9-2012 by Cuervo because: clarification...



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:28 AM
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the two snaked staph of hermes in his lap. Look at the position of the wings in relation to the staph. This guy is a doctor of medicine



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:35 AM
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Originally posted by rickymouse
the two snaked staph of hermes in his lap. Look at the position of the wings in relation to the staph. This guy is a doctor of medicine


If you look carefully, you'll see the effort that was made to keep Baphomet androgynous. Neither male or female. In keeping with that theme, the Caduceus (that staff you're talking about) is in place of a phallus to represent fertility and eternal life.

It wasn't always a symbol for medicine, you know. Doctors use powerful symbols because they work their own magick.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 01:23 AM
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reply to post by iwilliam
 


Thanks for the post.

I was going to go for Margaret Murray as well because she focused so heavily on the "Horned God" of the western European witch cults and because she carries the academic clout, but her work was completed after the death of A.L. Constant in 1875 (Murray's God of The Witches was pubbed in 1933). Still, I think it serves as a fine capstone on the aforementioned era of world interest in the occult

The Goya bit is cool as well and upon seeing the painting in question...



I could easily be led to believe that Constant was influenced by this painting and other fine art and literary conceptions of a hooved and horned being when he conceived of his Baphomet, Goya's painting was completed in 1798.

It might also be interesting to note that Young Goodman Brown, really a reflective piece on the occult nature of the Salem witch trials and America's participation in them, was completed by Nathaniel Hawthorne in 1835.

Thanks again.

X.
edit on 2-9-2012 by Xoanon because:




posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 01:40 AM
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You can't have a thread on this topic without tossing in this conspiratorial one...





S & F



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 02:02 AM
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reply to post by SLAYER69
 


Well, it sure does look like the same pose as Baphomet, But the artist that sculpted it, Horatio Greenough, claims to have been inspired by the Statue of Zeus at Olympia, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, when he created his statue of George Washington.



But after looking at the image that you posted I am beginning to wonder. Maybe you are on to something. The statue is considered to be a bit of an art-failure and was controversial when it was presented in 1841 and still seems to draw criticism today...




Horatio Greenough, George Washington. 1840, marble. In case your vision's bad, the founding father, member of the Continental Congress, commander-in-chief of the Continental Army, presiding officer of the Constitutional Convention, and first President of the United States has been carved semi-nude, wearing a toga and sandals, sitting on a throne, holding a sword outwardly with his left hand and making a Socratic gesture with his right hand. Holy #. Holy, holy, HOLY #.

badarthistory.blogspot.com...





P.S. You know, that is not the first time I have seen that comparison between Levi's Baphomet and the George Washington statue. After looking at it this time I realize that there is the possibility that Greenough and Levi could have been inspired by the same hidden chain of secret initiates, Otherwise, Levi would have had to have been influenced by Greenough, and not the other way around.

Also, the statue of Zeus at Olympia was destroyed and all we have are the accounts of historians and artists representations, so who knows?
edit on 2-9-2012 by Xoanon because: ?



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 07:59 AM
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These Christians that were trying to tell me freemasons were satanists and that I was cursed because my father was a mason tried to tell me that they worship Baphomet, that he is the devil . . .



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 08:22 AM
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reply to post by Cuervo
 


The staph replaces the phallus which is eternal life. I suppose that means that medicine can make everyone sterile if decided. Not only medicine but alchemy in general can have a great influence on fertility. Alchemy includes food chemistry. I know, talking about the staph of hermes replacing the phallus is talking nuts.
edit on 2-9-2012 by rickymouse because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 08:34 AM
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reply to post by RightInTwo
 


The masons are required to believe in a higher being or power I think. No where in their rules does it state which religions god is right. Maybe because of their influence in this country we formed a country with the freedom of religion. Some countries or localities have no choice of religion. That is evident in some communities in the USA also. If you get a whole community that believes the same, they chase out others of different beliefs often or make it so they do not prosper so they leave. I do not condone this but think that these people should reexamine the basis of their religion to see if the original texts that they are supposed to follow actually tell them to do this. Most often they don't.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 08:50 AM
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This thread has given me a hankering for lamb vindaloo! Mmmm.... Baphometalicious!

IRM



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 11:18 AM
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Hmm, well I still don't like that sketchy looking goat. Even with it's history put into perspective, it still looks weird, and foreboding.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:47 PM
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Originally posted by Cuervo

It's so easy for Christians to point to anything they don't like and to say "yeah... sure, that's what the devil looks like!" and completely dismiss it having any roll in anything not relating to them.
edit on 2-9-2012 by Cuervo because: clarification...


I think that's because in the Christians Holy Book, there is a deliberate separation of people into symbolic "sheep" and "goats":



And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: KJV Matthew 25:32

And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. KJV Matthew 25:33


and since the tradition has it that the "right" is "good" and the "left" is "evil", the "goats" represent the "evil ones".

So the Goat is used as a symbol of "independence", which is "separation from God", and hence "evil". While the Lamb is used as a symbol of "obedience", as it follows the Shepard or Sheep Dog, and thus symbolizes "unity with God".

Of course, to be "independent" of God, you have to possess your own "wisdom", since God isn't providing you with guidance at that point, and that independent wisdom is then Baphomet, the chief knowledge holder there of this "alternate" wisdom is the Devil, otherwise known as Satan. Then, Baphomet simply represents "freedom", "liberty", "wisdom", etc..to do your "own" will.

The Goat does his own will, while the Lamb does the WILL of God.

edit on 2-9-2012 by GreatOwl because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:52 PM
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Originally posted by GreatOwl

Originally posted by Cuervo

It's so easy for Christians to point to anything they don't like and to say "yeah... sure, that's what the devil looks like!" and completely dismiss it having any roll in anything not relating to them.
edit on 2-9-2012 by Cuervo because: clarification...


I think that's because in the Christians Holy Book, there is a deliberate separation of people into symbolic "sheep" and "goats":



And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats: KJV Matthew 25:32

And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. KJV Matthew 25:33


and since the tradition has it that the "right" is "good" and the "left" is "evil", the "goats" represent the "evil ones".

So the Goat is used as a symbol of "independence", which is "separation from God", and hence "evil". While the Lamb is used as a symbol of "obedience", as it follows the Shepard or Sheep Dog, and thus symbolizes "unity with God".

Of course, to be "independent" of God, you have to possess your own "wisdom", since God isn't providing you with guidance at that point, and that independent wisdom is then Baphomet, the chief knowledge holder there of this "alternate" wisdom is the Devil, otherwise known as Satan. Then, Baphomet simply represents "freedom", "liberty", "wisdom", etc..to do your "own" will.

The Goat does his own will, while the Lamb does the WILL of God.

edit on 2-9-2012 by GreatOwl because: (no reason given)


You make some great sense out of that for me. While the early church seemed to claim every other religion's divine line-up were Satans, they did seem to pick on goat-like imagery the most.

But... if Christians wanted to be consistent with the Sheep = Jesus/God's people and Goat = Satan/Free people, then why isn't Jesus depicted as a sheep god?

If I started a religion with a sheep god, I wonder if Satanists will claim it is the Christian god?



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 12:55 PM
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Woah...The Devil has some serious man-boobs.



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 01:14 PM
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Originally posted by Cuervo
why isn't Jesus depicted as a sheep god?


He is.



I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. KJV John 10:14

As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. KJV John 10:15

And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. KJV Revelation 22:1


Jesus is depicted as the pure "Lamb".

He's not just a God of the sheep, but he is also a "Lamb" himself, because he too follows God.

The symbolism is there in the text of the scripture. But, that's all that is necessary for the Christian, because they have "the scripture" to explain the message of the Lord. Since the devil doesn't have a corresponding "scripture" he has to use "mystery symbols" instead, which imply and suggest ideas to those "initiates" who can understand them.

There's no need to draw a picture of Jesus with a Lamb head, and sheep hoofs, because the imagery is all there in the text for you to read in plain language without any cipher.




edit on 2-9-2012 by GreatOwl because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 2 2012 @ 01:25 PM
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reply to post by SLAYER69
 


Greetings Slayer, i used to post in your threads years ago under the name johnny c,i left ats and came back today.Funny, today i actually gave you a shout out in my profile,i tried to pm you but i had not got enough posts[i think].
your post made me smile,haha you always were the detail guy.
,i see nothing changed.good stuff, i hoped as much.
Star and flag op. I wish someone had being around on a certain friday 13th to tell a certain spanish person and his pope buddy that.
still to this day many friends wont go to spain over it.





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