Same gods

   When you have a theology (of the sort of) the Greeks and Romans, Hindus and Chinese, one can turn from one tradition to another and recognize that the power here called Zeus is over there called Indra; and there is no essential conflict.  In the sixth book of Caesar’s Gallic Wars, for instance, where he describes the mythologies, rites, and religions of the Celtic tribes, it is difficult to know just which of the Celtic gods he is talking about, since he always applies to them the corresponding Latin names.  The Celts, he found, worshiped Mercury and Apollo, Mars, Jupiter, and Minerva; concerning these, he observed that they held much the same opinions as other nations.  TAT 40

Caesar, in the sixth chapter of his Gallic Wars, describes the gods of the Celts but gives them Roman names.  This is wonderful: the Romans, and before them the Greeks, could see that the gods of other people were the same gods they worshiped, because those gods are personifications of the energies that shape and maintain the universe.  So Caesar could go into Gaul and say, “He whom you call Cernunnos we call Pluto.  When Alexander the Great went into India, 327 B.C., he recognized Krishna as a counterpart of Herakles and Indra as a counterpart of Zeus.  So there is no missionizing, but rather a wonderful recognition.  But you could not possibly say, “He whom you call Ashur we call Yahweh.”  And why is that?  That’s because for the Celtic tribes, the desert people, the principle divinities were the tribal gods, the patrons of their tribes, and the gods of nature were secondary or nonexistent.  But in the Greek and Roman traditions, the principal deities are the deities that support the universe and the secondary deity is the tribal patron – the one who happens to be the guardian and advisor of a particular race.  These two mythological perspectives are in total contrast.  One is exclusive, the other is what is called syncretic.  So, with the Romans we begin to have a combination of classical and Celtic divinities, and they all come from the same Indo-European Bronze Age background.  There’s a wonderful coordination taking place.  TMTT 222

   A very strange problem comes from this: When the powers that we are giving our primary attention to are the powers of nature, we can go from Greece to India and we can say in India, “He whom you call Indra, we call Zeus.”  Alexander’s soldiers immediately understood who these Indian gods were and those who remained in Bactria as governors and rulers adopted the Indian deities without any violence done to their reverence to their own gods because these are the same gods with other names.  In the sixth book of The Gallic Wars, Caesar discusses the local religion of the conquered Celtic Gauls, but he uses the Roman names for the gods, so we don’t know what Celtic gods he is talking about.  This is known as syncretism, and it is the mode of most of the religions of the world.  Hindus are enormous syncretists, and Buddhists had no problem with this either.  The Egyptian priests were such syncretists that when the little villages along the Nile finally were incorporated into one great empire, the two realms of northern and southern Egypt, they could combine those local mythologies easily.  So the great big mythology of Isis and Nephthys and Osiris are combined mythologies, but they cohere properly in mythological terms. 

   However, imagine an ancient Hebrew saying, “He whom you call Assur, we call Yahweh.”  That doesn’t’ work!  So when your local god is your top god, that brings with it exclusivism.  Read the Old Testament: the gods of other people are not gods; they’re demons.  Read also the story of the Christian Spaniards conquering America: they actually called the deities of the Native Americans devils.  Using the word devil is a strange thing; let’s use the word dīmon.  For the Greek, the dīmon was the energy of your life, and the energy of your life doesn’t obey the rules necessarily that your head puts on it.  So the dīmon becomes a danger – a demon – for people who are stuck with their head trip, and consequently those people call such powers devils.      What we’re looking at in these mythologies is a world of dīmonic powers, and these demonic powers are the powers of our own lives.   G 16

(In the Roman Empire) there were all those little nations with their local creeds and folklore and religious teaching – the Celts and the Syrians and the Israelites, and so on – and then, when all this was put together in the Roman Empire, the Romans tried (to mix the religions).  They said that you just had to pray to Jupiter-Zeus-Amun, which was the highest god, and the underworld god would be Hades-Osiris (in Egypt Sarapis), and there you have a new cocktail religion where even the attributes of the gods were mixed!  That would be as if we would now have new images of Christ, in which he would be represented as sitting in a Buddha-position, with the mudra of pity, and somewhere the cross behind him in a decorative way.  All that is possible – human naiveté is boundless!   TPoPA 227


The spiritual man was seduced into putting on the body, and was bound to it by “Pandora, whom the Hebrews call Eve.”  She played the part, therefore, of the anima, who functions as the link between body and spirit, just as Shakti or Maya entangles man’s consciousness with the world.     AS 95  (Alchem studies - Jung)

   The pairs of opposites, thus, of male and female, of death and birth (possibly, also, the knowledge of good and evil, as in the biblical version of this widespread myth), came into the world, together with food, at the end of the Mythological Age, by way of the mythological act of murder, after which there evolved the world of time and differentiation.  And the high rites by which this world of time is kept in being, the sacramental rites, are normally observances of a sacrifice in reenactment of that Mythological Act.  Indeed, symbolically interpreted, even the sacrifice on the cross of him whose “flesh is meat indeed” and whose “blood is drink indeed” (John 6:55) was a mystery in the sense (spiritualized) of this mythological theme.  The cross as the astronomical sign of Earth (circle with cross in it).  Christ on the cross, Christ on his mother’s knees in the image of the Pieta, and the buried sacrifice in the womb of the mother-goddess Earth are equivalent signs.   (G xviii)

The Goddess

In the Roman Empire, during the golden era of Apuleius in the second century A.D., the Goddess was celebrated as the Goddess of Many Names.  In Classical myths, she appears as Aphrodite, Artemis, Demeter, Persephone, Athena, Hera, Hecate, the Three Graces, the Nine Muses, the Furies, and so on.  In Egypt she appears as Isis, in old Babylon as Ishtar, in Sumer as Inanna; among the western Semites she’s Astarte.  It’s the same goddess, and the first thing to realize is that she is a total goddess and as such has associations over the whole field of the culture system.  In later periods these different associations became specified and separated off into various specialized goddesses.    G 22

Venus, as we shall see, was associated with the Goddess, whether she was called Aphrodite, Isis, Ishtar, or Inanna.

Indra - Zeus - Amun - Jupiter - Thor - Jove - Marduk - Ashshur - Yahweh

“These warrior tribes were not patient tillers of the soil, but nomadic raiders, and their chief patron gods were thunder-hurlers, very much like themselves: among the Semites we find Marduk, Ashshur, and Yahweh, for example, and among the Indo-Europeans, Zeus, Thor, Jove, and Indra.”   G xxii

Cernunnos - Pluto -

Krishna - Herackles -

Hades - Osiris - Maya -

Osiris - Christ

And this is the idea (turning inward for spiritual enlightenment) that we’ve seen already in the Egyptian Book of the Dead, where the person who dies is called Osiris N – “Osiris Jones.”  He is on his way, in the underworld and afterlife journey, to the throne of Osiris, the god who died and was resurrected and sits as judge of the dead, precisely the model for Christ.  The individual on his way to Osiris is himself Osiris: you’re it.  On the way Osiris Jones becomes aware of the fact that all the deities that he has worshipped are simply functions of his own mystery; he goes through a gray area in the underworld and says, “My hair is the hair of Nu, my face is the face of Re, my eyes are the eyes of Hathor” – every part of my body is some god.  Then he says, “I am yesterday, today, and tomorrow and have the power to be born a second time.  I am that mystery that has given rise to the gods.”  That you yourself are what you see reflected outside there in your pantheon and must come to acknowledge as being within yourself is the realization of the initiation of mythology.   G102


Juno - Hera -

Gaia - Mater Natura -

… Isis herself.  Like Mary, she is the Mother of God, with the Savior enthroned on her knee.  Indeed, the pharaohs are even represented nursing at her breast.   G xxi

Manannan - Siva - Poseidon - Neptune

Manannan is the counterpart to Siva in India and to Poseidon and Neptune in the Mediterranean system.  These lords are the initiators into the abyss.  And they are the lords and consorts of the goddess Mother Earth.

Siva is the same god: his weapon is his trident, and his animal is the bull.  He represents the lingam, the divine energy pouring world creative power into the womb of the Goddess.  Siva’s principal symbol is the lingam joined with the yoni, the female organ penetrated by the male.  Siva and Poseidon represent that very old tradition when there was the diffusion of this mythology in the period of the Mother Goddess, the period of our earliest societies. 

   In Hindu iconography, Siva is often shown with his Sakti, the goddess Parvati.  While Siva has his trident and his bull, Nandi, Parvati is frequently shown in a leopard’s or lioness’s skin, so here we are again: the god is associated with the lunar bull, while the goddess is associated with the soalr lion.  This is an old story, a continuity of tradition, not a suppression as we find in the biblical tradition.  The Bible eliminates the Goddess, whereas in the Indian tradition the Goddess is celebrated as the mother and in Greece the Goddess is powerful in her own right.

Poseidon is the lord of the waters with the trident, the central point between the pairs of opposites.  The waters that Poseidon represents are not the sale waters of the sea but the fresh waters that come up from the deep under the Earth, the ones that fertilize the soil.  In some representations Poseidon has a bull’s foot; the animal of Poseidon is the bull.  In the Christian tradition the inheritor of this symbolism is the devil, with is pitchfork and the cloven hoof.  That is what happened to the Lord, who represented the dynamics of zeal for life, when he was taken over by a system that considers every natural impulse sinful.  

Cundrie / Kali /

Hermann Goetz points out in his article “Der Orient der Kreuzzuge in Wolframs Parzival” (The Orient of the Crusades in Wolfram’s Parzival) that the attributes of this Grail messenger, Cundrie – her boar’s snout and tusks and her boar’s-bristle hair, astride her tall mule – are exactly those of certain Indian representations of the goddess Kali in her terrible aspect.  There is also a Tibetan version of this figure – Lhamo by name – who appears, like Cundrie, riding a tall pink mule for the chastisement of those who reject the gospel of compassion.  But as we know from many Irish legends of the goddess of the Celtic Land of Youth Below Waves, this goddess, too, may appear with the unappetizing head and face of a pig.  When she appears in this guise, for example, to Finn McCool’s son Ossian, hinting that he should marry her, he boldly kisses her muzzle and she is transformed.  And he spends many a happy year as king with her in the Land of Youth.  

   Frazer, in The Golden Bough, has shown that both Demeter and Persephone were at one time pig goddesses, and there is evidence enough to suggest that the Irish, Greek, and Indian forms of these goddesses are related variants of a single Neolithic and Bronze Age heritage, where both the wild boar and the domestic pig were associated with a mythology of death and rebirth. 

Moses - Sargon 1 -

The earliest of the great Semitic kings in Mesopotamia was Sargon of Akkad, about 2350 B.C., the famous legend of whose lowly birth in secrecy by a mother who placed him in a basket of rushes, sealed it with bitumen, and set it in the river became, about a millennium and a half later, a model for the legend of the birth and exposure of Moses (Exodus 2:1-3).  “The river bore me up, “ the account of Sargon reads; “and it carried me to Akku, the irrigator, who took me from the river, raised me as his son, made of me a gardener: and while I was a gardener, the goddess Ishtar loved me.  Then I ruled the kingdom.”    G xxii

Adam - Gayomart - Purusha  (????)

He appears as Adam, as the Persian Gayomart, or as the Hindu Purusha.

Same Trees

For as we have heard: When the Lord God discovered that the man fashioned to work in his garden had been lured by his wife and a serpent into eating the fruit of the tree of knowledge, which he had reserved for himself, he cursed the serpent to crawl on its belly, the woman to give birth in pain, and his disobedient gardener to toil “in the sweat of his face” on an Earth of dust cursed to bring forth thorns and thistles.  And then, as we read: “lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life and live forever – therefore Yahweh sent them forth from the garden… and at the east of the garden of Eden placed the cherubim and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life”  (Genesis 3).

   It is surely clear (and can be shown) that the two trees in question are aspects of the one Bo Tree of Enlightenment and Eternal Life under which Prince Gautama sat, where the cosmic serpent Mucalinda lived, and the Goddess (here in reduced form as the serpent’s messenger, Eve) testified to the right of Man to come to the knowledge of the now forbidden Light.   G xxiv