Moses was an Egyptian
(work in progress posted 3/17)
In this section I will seek to combine three ideas into one thesis. Inividually the ideas are 1) that the Hebrew temple and the priests that ministered in the temple represented the cosmos and the forces that acted there, 2) that the Mystries of Osiiris served as the general model for other religous celebrations, and 3) that Moses was an Egyptian. The thesis that is suggested is that the reason the Hebrew symbolism looks so much like the Egytian symbolism is that it was borrowed wholesale from them.
It has been suggested that the ceremonial of the Hebrews was not developed in forty years in the desert, but was rather taken from Egypt by a group of Aton religion monotheists who were either forced out, or left of their own accord, after the death of Akhnaton and before the reinstitution of the authority of the state by Haremhab. The name Aton or Aten reminds us of the Hebrew Adoni or Lord.
According to this, the Levites were a priest class in Egypt who adopted monotheiem. But as the story goes, concessions are made in the mythology to suit the masses; meaning that what developed was not a pure monotheism. For instance a god that is the the most powerful god on the block is not really a universal god, this is a tribal or national god competing with others.
Another group of gods are associated with natural forces. These are recognized across cultural lines with out causing conflicts. Then there are those that represent abstractions. The idea of a univerasal god, not restricted to one people or one country, and not opposed by other entities, is just such an abstraction. Since we know that dealing in philosophical abstractions is not every one's favorite pastime, we also know that religions traditionally develop at least two layers of meanings, one for the masses, and one for the priests.
Your Bible speak with fork-ed tongue. On one hand it condemns astrology yet it is wrapped in astrological numerology. I believe that one conclusion that one can draw from this is that only some people can study that. It has been suggested that the Hebrew revolted against Moses ideas, just as they had against those in Egypt. The book is clearly a compromise of styles. There is the invisible Creator god, then the Father Warrior Sky God, and lastly we see the Mother and Son. Since, as Freud tells us, circumcision represents the threat of (is a mock) castration and is tied to the notion of submitting to the Father's will, there is no s*x in the Mother and Son story.
In all fairness is should be pointed out that Moses "belonged to an age so remote that the preliminary question arises whether he was a historical person or a legendary figure", like so many that we read about. Hebrews possess a rich extra-Biblical literature with myths and legends about their leader that have obscured him. The name Moses is written as Mosche in Hebrew and derives from a word meaning to draw out, as in out of the water. The Bible tells us that Moses is the name given by Pharaoh's daughter to the infant that she "drew from the water", imply that Pharaoh's daughter spoke Hebrew? Looking at Egyptian we see that 'mose' means 'child', as in Ra-mose (Ramses).
The symbols in the story of baby Moses in the reed boat interface with the symbols in several other legends. Note that the basket is a symbolic representation of the womb, and the story is one about birth or incarnation. This is a typical water and container story, where we see a container with a cargo being surrounded by water. The container is not for the water, but transports the cargo through the water. The grail doesn't hold liquid, it is suspended in liquid. Remember that Moses had a brother and sister, Aaron and Miriam. In Hebrew 'aron' means chest, ark or box, and Miriam can be easily seen as connected to Maria, Mary and the notion of waters.
The motion of the sun at night is often depicted as a journey taken by boat. In the legends of Hercules, he borrows the cup that Helios uses to traverse the night in. Note the depiction above of the beetle in the bark (sun boat) with seven passengers, which reminds us of Noah and his seven passengers. Remember that Osiris is cut into 14 parts, and the waters prevail for 15 days in the Bible; the time from a new to a full moon.
Osiris represents the soul in its journey based on this model. Sunset represents the soul entering the body which is mythologized by Osiris being sealed in a measured coffin by his brother Set. After being sealed in the coffin Osiris is dropped in the Nile, symbol of the Milky Way along which the soul travels. The coffin comes to shore in Byblos (Lebanon) and is surrounded by a tree. In pictures of the djed pillar we see two goddesses surrounding the pillar in a protective embrace.
An early Egyptian coffin shows the goddess at the foot of the coffin with her arms raised in a protective jesture. There is another on the opposite end of the coffin. Eventually these goddess figures develop wings as in the djed image above. The idea of twin godddesses stretching out their wings as protection is the model used in image of the Ark of the Covenant that we see.
We remember that Moses was put in the Nile in a sealed reed boat, and rescued by the pharaoh's daughter. After rescuing Osiris, Isis takes him to a reed swamp to hide him. In Gilgamesh, the Lord suggests that people tear down their reed house, and build a cubic sanctuary from the flood. Our main concern in these stories is water and a container, not for the water, but to traverse the water in as a vehicle. All the containers in these stories represent the womb, the tomb, and the body; also the cosmos by extension.
Most people don't know that a manger is a feed trough for animals, and while you mainly see them depicted as wooden with straw in them, in actuality many are made of stone and look not unlike the sarcohpagus from the Great Pyramid.
The manger is not a place for animals to rest, but a thing that they eat from. The notion of birth, incarnation, is being tied to the notion of eating and the idea of the joining of a spiritual and an animal nature into one being. The cobra and vulture are the symbols or these upper and lower kingdoms, the body and the spirit, and can be seen on the pharaoh's headdress. Symbolically Egypt represents the body and Israel the spirit. Remember that there were two Hebrew Kingdoms as well.
HPH Bromwell describes the Worshipful Master: "As the sun rules the day, so should the Worshipful Master rule and govern his Lodge. He wears an elliptical collar; this is the circle of the Zodiac on the middle line of which the sun pursues his apparent annual course; which belt includes the planes of the orbits of all the planets. The Master's collar is studded with stars representing the planets which are always found within this Zodiac belt. Above, the lines on the headress are the longitude and latitude lines, and the necklace features the celestial spheres." Apparently the wardrobe of the priest was symbolic in the same manner of the celestial bodies.
The Bible appears to be 'of two minds' concerning astronomy, because while it condemns astrology it is presented against a background of astrological numerology.
In the Osiris story, it entails him and his borther and seventy two co-conspiritors; with seventy two being the number of years that it takes for the equinox point to precess one degree. In Exodus 24:1 Moses, his brother Aaron and seventy two elders are told to 'Come up unto the LORD'. Before there was a tabernacle, Moses 'rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel'.
The 12 disciples are also the twelve Zodaic signs. The four tribes with standards that camped around the ark in the desert represent the four 'fixed' signs, Taurus, Leo, Scorpio and Aquarius. These are the four living creatures in Ezekiel and the Revelation.
Another set of symbols ties the ideas of eating, sacrifice, agriculture, threshing and agriculture to the site of Solomon's Temple. David bought the site as a threshingfloor complete with all the tools. Saturn was the god of the harvest and was depicted with a scythe in his had, the model for the figure of Death and Father Time. The Saturnalia was celebrated in December in Rome. The Hebrew day of worship was Saturday. For a further development of this train of thought see my page entitled Circumambulation.
Among the precepts of Mosaic Monotheism is the prohibition against making an image of God, signifying subordinating sense perception ot abstract idea. Moses God had neither a name or a face. Freud calls this a triumph of spirituality over the senses. Through the Mosaic prohibition, God raised to a higher level of spirituality, there were changes in the idea of God. Akhnaton described himself in inscriptions as 'living in Maat" (truth. justice), and he introduced us to a more spiritual conception of God, a single God who embraces the whole world and set as the highest aim truth and justice.
We are reminded of Joseph Campbell's description, "The essence of the spiritual experience intended by the Mystery Religions was the shifting of consciousness from the purely phenomenal aspect's of one's life to the spiritual, eternal aspects".