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This marks the third time (at least) that an ATS user has recommended "The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross" to me. I'll definitely have to keep my eyes peeled for if/when a copy shows up at my local bookstore.
As for the idea of the "U" as an original god... I'm iffy.
If anything, the original veneration was of the Earth as a mother-figure. So, a monotheistic Mother-Goddess worship. But, I don't actually believe that monotheism is the root of religious worship. I believe monotheism is an evolution of religious worship.
That's an entirely different topic then the one at hand though, ha ha.
The gestational process, the consequence of 'love', was associated with heat and fire, which naturally translates into the process of beliefs of rebirth and afterlife. And, much like the male deity has many aspects to it, the feminine is seen as a bridge between life and death, hence her association, in early and pre-history, with medicine, as well as the necromantic arts of the prophet or seer.
This was a very good point, they don't call it Nec-romantic without reason.
Bear in mind that 'U' is merely a phoneme, a component sound in the formation of a word and in that context, Allegro is considering it as a building block of spoken language, then translated into a written form. So, where 'U' appears, it carries an implied spoken meaning that was understood, one of divinity.
Ah ha...Allegro, as much as I admire him, I have all his books, was at core, a Biblical scholar, if a disgraced one, and one with a personal agenda.
In essence, if we for the moment ignore the feminine element, he is saying that one male god, encompassing many offices, was divided to become many gods as society became more complex, before contracting to it's original form.
Allegro provides a scant indication in that he includes his analysis of the Sumerian pictogram for 'love', a burning torch enclosed in a vessel or container. The gestational process, the consequence of 'love', was associated with heat and fire, which naturally translates into the process of beliefs of rebirth and afterlife. And, much like the male deity has many aspects to it, the feminine is seen as a bridge between life and death, hence her association, in early and pre-history, with medicine, as well as the necromantic arts of the prophet or seer.
What interests me about the above is how the author harmonizes the diverse languages of the world.
Consider the Gaelic language. For a very long time the Gaelic language did not have a phoneme equivalent to what we now understand as the letter P. It was not until the Latinization of the Celtic empire that the letter P entered into Celtic languages.
Does every language on Earth use the letter U?
Does the letter U encompass the same sound in every language?
Obviously I would need to read the book to learn the answer, but, that was one of the first thoughts which struck me when I read your more in-depth synopsis of the book and it's goal.
Ah, see, you should never have told me this, ha ha.
I'll be the first to admit that I look at Biblical religion with suspicion, and, more often than not, disdain. Biblical accounts are rife with historical inaccuracies, scientific mistakes, and borrowed spiritual practices / philosophies. Knowing what Jews, Christians, and Muslims did to the people whose spirituality they borrowed, I often cannot stomach reading the historical revisionism that accompanies the Bible.
Apologies for the mini-rant.
Allegro is espousing what is commonly known as a Henotheism. A Henotheism is a philosophy/theology where all lesser divinities are elements of a single greater divinity.
To me, the U phoneme only makes sense if, as you pointed out, you ignore the feminine, and if you ignore the bountiful examples of important deities lacking the U phoneme.
Consider An, before the Babylonian empire. Or Enlil, who ruled after An. Even Rē and Thoth among the Egyptians. A variety of others, like Il and Baal from Ugaritic mythology even. And that is just looking at the masculine powers. Inanna, Isis, Asherah, Neith, Anat, Kybele, Rhea, Persephone, Hathor, and so on. The world of deities is full of figures who lack the U phoneme.
Where I really see the U phoneme, is in Henotheistic, or monotheistic societies. Marduk in Babylon, which, as I explained, replaced An and Enlil from Sumer. Ba'al-Zebul, in the Ugarit, who replaced El and Yam as Prince of Princes (or, the Supreme God). Amun-Rē, who came to power only after Akhenaten's reign, and the discovery of Egypt by the Greeks. Even among the Greeks, Zeus came to power after the age of the Titans.
The U-god is not the original divinity, but a late-comer who takes over after the previous generation either collapses in on itself, is ousted in a war, or ascends to another spiritual level. Which is why I do not believe that a single All-Father was the source of religious worship, but am perfectly capable of believing that monotheism is an evolutionary turn that we, as a species, took around the time that the nomadic Jews began traveling around the ancient Near East, spreading their new "One God" philosophy.
~ Wandering Scribe
he is saying that one male god, encompassing many offices, was divided to become many gods as society became more complex, before contracting to it's original form.
His focus was on archaeology and philology, he doesn't wander off those disciplines all that much, and does not concern himself with spirituality at all.
-Ninurta and the Turtle T.1.6.3 :
When Anzu is struck he loses the divine perogatives he stole and explains:
(Segment B, l.3)
"As I let the divine plan go out of my hand, this divine plan returned to the abzu."
In this case ĝiš-hur is rendered divine plan.
- The lament for Sumer and Urim T.2.2.3
1-2. To overturn the appointed times, to obliterate the divine plans, the storms gather to strike like a flood.
Here ĝiš-hur is rendered divine plans.
-Amar-Suena and Enki's temple (Amar-Suena A) T.126.96.36.199
In the fourth year it remained in ruins, and he did not restore it. Although he had been advised (?) by a sage, he could not realise the plans of the temple.
Here ĝiš-hur is rendered the plans.
-Sîn-iddinam and Iškur (Sîn-iddinam E) T.188.8.131.52
"who puts in order the divine plans of Eridug, who makes perfect offerings to the gods; the wise one who has restored the ancient divine powers, ……"
Here ĝiš-hur is rendered divine plans (Part of the royal praise of a king).
The gypsum and bitumen which they smear on the door of the sick man.
:The gypsum is Ninurta. The bitumen is Asakku. Ninurta pursues Asakku.
The circle of flour (zi-sur-ra-a) which surrounds the bed of the sick man.
:Lugalgirra and Meslamtaea.
The three heaps of flour which they cast down.
:Anu, Enlil, and Ea.
. The design (giš-hur-ra) which they draw in front of the bed.
:That is a net and traps Any Evil.
The drum and cymbals which are resplendent at the head of the sick man.
:The drum is Anu. The cymbals are Enlil.
The standards which are set up at the head of the sick man.
:They are Sibitti, the great gods, sons of Išhara.
The scapegoat which is placed at the head of the sick man.
:Ninamaškuga, Enlil's shepherd.
The censor and torch placed in the house of the sick man.
:The censor is Kusu. The torch is Nusku
Horowitz examines a late Babylonian flake which shows a square (listing the four winds) enclosed by a circle, which "suggests that the winds blew in a circular region," and he cites texts which state (e.g.) kippat šār erbetti "circle of the four winds."
What's interesting about these religio-magical phenomena is their consistent visualization in terms of wind; my contention however is that in many cases, the word used which, may carry a connotation of wind, has in many cases the implication of an entity or intelligence.
The South wind which served Ea.
The East wind which served Enlil
The North wind which served Adad and Ninurta.
The West wind which served Anu.
"Then what did the stormwind bring?
It blew the dust of the mountains into my eyes.
When I tried to wipe the corner of my eyes with my hand, I got some of it out, but was not able to get all of it out. I raised my eyes to the lower land, and saw the high gods of the land where the sun rises. I raised my eyes to the highlands, and saw the exalted gods of the land where the sun sets.
I saw a solitary ghost. I recognized a solitary god by her appearance.
I saw someone who possesses fully the divine powers.
I was looking at someone whose destiny was decided by the gods."
The Sumerian behind the term "dust of the mountain" is sahar kur-ra and occurs in two additional ETCSL texts:
Inanna's descent - the plea to rescue Inanna from her death:
" Father Nanna, don't let anyone kill your daughter in the underworld. Don't let your precious metal be alloyed there with the dirt of the underworld [sahar kur-ra]. "
The Lament for Sumer and Ur - description of the world turned upside down:
" Heaven was darkened, it was covered by a shadow; the mountains roared. Utu lay down at the horizon, dust passed over the mountains [sahar kur-ra]. Nanna lay at the zenith, the
people were afraid. "
2 ... dust of the earth/netherworld [SAHAR qi2-qi2-ri(?)]....
3 let it (the dust) br[ing] up a ghost to me from the
4 darkness. L[et] the tendons [bring] the dead to life.."
...the ritual accompaniment for this necromantic incantation involves mixing "dust from the crossroads, (and) dust of a jumping cricket (?) of the steppe" with a few other objects and smearing this on the skull - which would then contain the summoned ghost. Presumably the dust of the crossroads and the cricket of the steppe would be the ritual equivalent of the dust of the netherworld - hence it seems to be this substance which empowers the necromantic rite to see the ghost
Inana was considering what should be done because of her genitals.
She mounted on a cloud, took (?) her seat there and . . .
The south wind and a fearsome storm flood went before her.
She stretched herself like a rainbow across the sky and reached thereby as far as the earth.
She let the south wind pass across, she let the north wind pass across.
From fear, Šu-kale-tuda tried to make himself as tiny as possible,
but the woman had found him among the mountains.
The south wind, when it blows, dizzies people with dust.
The north wind when mightily blowing splits open the broad land.
The east wind, which has caused the rain above to rain down its lightning
The west wind is evil,* tirelessly brings devastation to the arallû-plains.
reply to post by abeverage
I like that painting thanks, and FL do very much concern themselves with what a plan of a magic circle should involve.
edit on 23-9-2013 by Kantzveldt because: (no reason given)
reply to post by abeverage
It's an interesting enough reconstruction, and of course one of the essentials for any magic circle is generally considered to be the Pentagram which is the division of the ecliptic plane according to 5 rising points of Venus.
reply to post by abeverage
So then we have pretty much understood what was involved with ritual communication involving the wind and spirits, and the staff that is used to draw the circle in the magical dust is the pure staff of Office given to Ninsubura by Anu, and that she controls access to and from the doors of infinty and beyond, so really all that remains is to open the doors...
reply to post by abeverage
I don't know but i don't remember reading anything about key holders in Sumerian literature, can one seriously expect to find answers in popular culture of today, doesn't this have it's own agenda...?
I don't know but i don't remember reading anything about key holders in Sumerian literature
can one seriously expect to find answers in popular culture of today, doesn't this have it's own agenda...?
Yet, I will gladly admit for as much as I know, I still know nothing...