|And the Lord said unto Moses, Make thee a fiery serpent, and set it upon a pole: and it shall come to pass, that every one that is bitten, when he looketh upon it, shall live.
There is a serpent that destroys, and there is a serpent that saves. The Egyptians believed that if serpents could be mastered in this world, then they could be beneficial.1 Which brings us to the story of the Plumed Serpent. Although symbolic, the motif of the serpent is commonly found in the gospel.
The name 'Quetzalcoatl' means 'feathered serpent', and also 'precious twin' as depicted by Venus, the morning and evening star. It was also closely linked with the rain god Tlaloc, which is pertinent to us since we are concerned with the opening of the seventh age when the symbol Aquarius pours out water upon the earth. When Hernán Cortés landed in Mexico in 1519, he was believed by the Aztecs to be Quetzalcoatl, the great white god who had promised to one day return.2 In the role of the Plumed Serpent, He had the power to go below all things and lift them above the effects of the fall.
Spiritual death was the result of the fall of Adam and Eve. To be brought back into the presence of the Father, a substitute was required. The law of sacrifice was established that brought about that necessary substitution. There are a series of steps up Jacob's ladder if we desire to achieve exaltation. We have often used Facsimile 2 to describe the ascension process to sanctification. The final step to the crowning ceremony, like the earlier steps, is portrayed by sacrificial death and rebirth. The plumed serpent, Quetzalcoatl, is a powerful symbol to explain that final substitute.
In this article we will discuss Facsimile 2 in light of the final crossroad that must be navigated in order to qualify for the great marriage ceremony, the feast we are all called to attend, which basically means 'the promise of exaltation'. We will first look at this process for individuals, and then for the earth herself. There is a final challenge to be overcome at that last crossroad both for us, and also for the earth. Not only will we discuss the spiritual journey, but also look at some new hard science that will help show the process and blend the religious with that science. Typically, the crossroads are shown as rivers and that is where we will begin.
Crossing a body of water is how we leave Egypt and enter our wilderness experience as shown by the Red Sea for the children of Israel , and the Mississippi for Brigham Young and Latter-Day Israel. When the initiate has proven worthy, crossing another body of water is the final barrier to the Promised Land, Zion , e.g. the River Jordan for the Israelites. For Latter-Day Saints, we have a poignant type in the young men, (Sent Ones) sent by Brigham Young to help the stranded handcart companies. They literally gave their lives as a substitute, carrying those starved and exhausted people across that freezing river so they could make the final leg of the journey into Zion.
There are two solar boats in Facsimile 2, the first (fig. 3) is an open boat like Nephi's which brings into the boat all who want to attempt the journey to Zion . The figure sent out in that boat is a 'Sent One' who comes as a hero to save all who will come into the gospel net. The next boat (fig. 4) is hermetically sealed to keep the mummy free from pollution since nothing unclean can enter heaven. This boat, like the Jaredite barges or the Ark of the Covenant, is a closed vessel and is protected by Cherubim to bring the initiate over the last river and into the presence of God and His angels. If we complete this process in this life, then we qualify for that blessing and may or may not have the actual manifestation of it in mortality.
The crocodile plays an important role in the process as we learn from Facsimile 1. It is his job to keep unclean things from crossing the river and entering heaven. This role is filled by many different forms, and it does not matter which a culture uses, the job is the same. Some of the ways it is portrayed is by a giant serpent, a whale, a crocodile, a dragon and also simply a nameless giant sea monster, which is how we will refer to it. In fact, whale in Hebrew (tannin) means "any great animal in the depths of the sea.3
Ezekiel referred to the river crossings and the two animals that depict the challenges the Adversary makes to the initiates who wish to cross:
|Son of man, take up a lamentation for Pharaoh king of Egypt , and say unto him, Thou art like a young lion of the nations, and thou art as a whale in the seas: and thou camest forth with thy rivers, and troubledst the waters with thy feet, and fouledst their rivers.
The interesting thing about the lion couch experience is this; even after passing the test of the lion and getting out of Egypt into the wilderness journey, that old lion roams and will continue to test initiates at various intervals. Once the test of the sea monster is passed, security is assured and the crossing can be completed.
The Aztecs portrayed this event with a god with giant claws that tore out the heart of their sacrifices. The sacrifice of the heart was believed to be necessary to keep all things in motion. They believed the universe was very fragile and needed the constant supply of blood to the gods to maintain stability.4 The law of sacrifice has permeated history with its influence. It seems it was understood that a human sacrifice would be needed but with the loss of understanding about the Messiah, their beliefs were corrupted. Even with the Atonement accomplished, however, the sacrifice of hearts are still needed, only now it is a broken heart and contrite spirit that activates the power of the Atonement when we make sacred covenants. Before the sacrifice is completely accepted, the heart must be weighed in the balance. Then, if the initiate proves worthy, the day comes when they are taken aloft as in fig. 4, (or sometimes portrayed as going up some stairs), then their feet are washed so they are clean every whit, and finally, they are brought into the presence of the Lord.
This can only happen after the initiate has looked into the maw of the whale, passing his/her test as did Abraham, taking off the outer skin, so to speak, to give to the whale. Picture this as if you were about to be swallowed by a whale and you had on a wet suit. Throwing that wet suit into the whale's mouth, in our fictitious story, would fool it into thinking the wet suit was you. The whale would then swallow the offering allowing you to be plucked up by your rescuers in the solar boat that would then take you across the river. The best image is the one presented by the plumed serpent. We are all to take upon ourselves the name of Christ and have His image in our countenance. If we too, are plumed serpents, (similar to the caduceus with wings at the top of the snake), we would shed our skin to offer to the whale, then fly aloft on eagle's wings. Without the substitute, it does not happen. When we take Christ's name upon us and take His image in our countenance, then through the power of His Atonement, we have the ram in the thicket to take our place, the substitute. "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.5
This brings us back to our articles in December that explained how Facsimile 2 works. The first time through the maze, we go as the initiate, fished from the waters of chaos. Then we can go out (fig. 3) as 'Sent Ones' to assist others to get in the ship of Zion for the path home. Sometimes those sanctified people fear their assignment as did Jonah. The boat was in danger because of his disobedience and he had to be thrown overboard. In Peter the Great Fisherman, we discussed the process of being symbolic fish and being pulled onto the firm foundation by the gospel net. Yet, for the 'Sent One' who slips up, he is not a type for a fish, but is instead inside the fish. Jonah did not keep his covenants and was in Satan's power until he repented.
The Akkadians ( Northern Mesopotamia ) had a myth about a snake that stole a plant of immortality. This is the way the snake acquired the gift of rejuvenation by sloughing its skin.6 This is a type and shadow for the Plumed Serpent. When we become as Christ and the maw of the great monster opens wide to devour us, we slough the outer skin as a snake. We do this by offering the substitution of the Atonement. This is done through repentance, following the teachings of the prophets, enduring our testing, and by the power that reverses the blows of death in the temple. The monster takes the substitute, and allows the initiate to pass through the symbolic death and rebirth that the Atonement provides. Father in Heaven provides helping hands to guide us through this trial. We may enter.
The role of Anubis the high priest in Egyptian mythology is another way of explaining the process of moving from Fac. 2, fig. 1, taken aloft by fig. 4, to reach the throne of Osiris, fig. 2. Anubis takes the initiate by the hand and guides him into the presence of the throne where his heart is weighed in the balance. If his heart weighs more than the feather of truth, then he is devoured by the god of pharaoh, waiting in the Nile River.7
This process is also described in a different way by the Egyptians, using the ancient Hermetic teachings. Purity of heart, prayerfulness and other virtues are necessary after passing through the gate and traversing the path. They have to be introduced into the hermitically sealed vase and then the vase is transferred into the furnace for purification. After all that, the initiate still must confront a formidable dragon to pass his test.8
The Aztecs also had a vase motif. They would remove the heart of the human sacrifice and offer it to the sun in an eagle's vase,9 which represents the sealed ark from fig. 4.
The above process brings to mind the trial of Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nigo, who refused to worship a golden image as a god and were thrown into a very hot furnace. (See Daniel ch. 3) Their spiritual state is made very clear since they not only are not singed, but also have the presence of the Lord to attend them. For the initiate to be prepared for a Celestial glory, which is eternal burnings, they must be refined as gold.
The legend of El Dorado is poorly understood. It is a South American ritual from ancient times and means 'The Gilded Man'. When a new king was preparing for his coronation, he would spend time preparing and meditating in a cave. His body would then be covered with sticky resin and gold dust blown through a straw onto his body until he was completely covered in gold. His four principle attendants would then take him to the middle of a lake in a boat. His people would surround the lake and sing and play instruments. An offering would be poured into the lake and then the new ruler would return to shore to be ceremoniously greeted. They believed the gold was the substance that gave the breath of life for which they lived and died.10 So many truths are touched upon here from the cave (often depicted beneath the Tree of Life, or as a hive which is representative of the resurrection) to the golden honey bee believed to have the power to sting a mummy back to life. This king goes through symbolic death in the cave, and rebirth as he emerges. He moves into the center place at the lake. His people surrounding the lake send mental energy (as if in a prayer circle) and the new king is in the position of a new Adam, a proxy for Christ (Facsimile 2, figure 1). We have discussed at length in a few articles how highly refined water is the same as fire. This symbolically is the waters of life put in motion that provides the energy to organize a new creation, a new society in the name of the new king. The King is covered in gold dust and glows. The outer man has been removed and the inner man was ready for the garment of light. The new king was ready to stand in as a proxy for the king of heaven to bless his people. Enoch spoke of this principle:
|Thou has made me and given unto me a right to thy throne, and Not of myself, but through thine own grace.
The Book of Breathings tells us that the initiate is challenged to combat at the gate. This ritual combat takes many forms. "The serpent who blocks the progress of the solar-bark must be overcome at the lake of combat.The Pharaoh was thought to be reborn, like that god himself.The fiery elements seem to have been suggested by the flaming gold of sunrise." In fact, the sun cannot rise until the challenge is overcome.11
The story of the Golden Fleece is a wonderful type for the garment of light. Words of power, obtained from the gods and with the gods' assistance helped Jason and the Argonauts get past the dragon that guarded the fleece of the flying ram. The Argonauts were heroes sent out in a journey by boat enduring great trials. The heroes travel by night (which symbolizes coming down to fallen earth) to obtain the fleece and ensure a new dawn. They battle serpents, giants, and Jason's wicked uncle who is a type for the usurper or the devil.12
Pattern and Process
The journey described above and as found in the Facsimiles is describing our return path to the Father. We will now look at this journey in regards to this earth. We have been taught that this earth will travel back during the Millennium to the presence of Kolob. This is the Atonement earth and has a special and permanent place as the footstool for the center place, Kolob. Enoch wrote: "the earth is his footstool."13
When Adam and Eve lived in the Garden of Eden, the Earth was closely orbiting Kolob, like God's home planet. But when Adam and Eve fell, so did the Earth and it was hurled across the cosmos and placed in orbit around our sun in this planetary system. After the Millennium, the Earth will return to its rightful place near God, orbiting Kolob.14
The article When the Christmas Lights Go Out describes the significance of the year 2012, the beginning of the new day. We believe this will be part of the process of turning toward Kolob for the journey home. But before we can make it through the door, we are challenged at the river by pharaoh's god in the water. Enoch was shown the travails of the earth and had great empathy for her: "And again Enoch wept and cried unto the Lord, saying: When shall the earth rest?"15 The earth had her baptism by water in the past. Her baptism of fire is on the horizon. Today we are focusing on her final crossroad to exaltation.
In Ancient Egyptians and Constellations , we read that there are amazing similarities between the Ancient Egyptian star map and the ground plan at Giza involving the Sphinx facing directly eastwards. Their map shows the Milky Way with a large, bright star they believed to be the sphinx guarding the center of the galaxy. They believed the Milky Way was the Celestial River Nile. This is the dark line that runs through the center of the Milky Way that was called the dark river by the Mayans. Their long calendar ends on December 21, 2012, when the sun crosses the center of that dark crossbar. They called this event the Tree of Life, the Cross, and the midnight of the Age of Pisces. This is when time ends, and a new time begins, the Age of Aquarius.
The Constellation of Gemini, the Twins, clearly visible on the Egyptian map, represents duality, the two faces of death and rebirth with the river barring the way to the veil that separates us from the Promised Land. This is the idea that Venus is the evening star before entering the dark river of night (our crossroad trials) that runs through the center of the Milky Way, and the morning star that has successfully completed the crossing.16 Waiting to challenge the initiate is the sea monster, Pharaoh's god, making sure no corruption passes. Since only Christ is pure enough to enter, only those covered with the Atoning blood of Christ can pass.
Quetzalcoatl is believed to be the morning and evening star. In the Aztec mythology, they believed that the plumed serpent went and purified Himself in the water of the Gulf of Mexico, fasted four days, then invested Himself in gorgeous raiment. He then placed Himself on a funeral pyre. A bird flew out of the pyre (the phoenix or eagle), ascended into the sky and became Venus. "As Venus, the god symbolized death and resurrection."17
In June of 2012, we will see the rare event of the planet Venus aligning with the sun and earth. This shortly precedes the alignment of the sun with the center of the galaxy. We believe the new day will be when the earth begins its journey back to Kolob and we will expound on that thought in our next article.
John Major Jenkins in writing of the end of the Mayan Long Count Calendar in 2012, wrote that: "rather than it being the end of time and space, we might better speak of it as the center of time and space, which reflects the indigenous idea of periodic outflow and inflow around the cosmic center." 18 He, and a group of hundreds of scientists that he works with believe that the "supermassive black hole 'Sgr A'", will increase its influence on the earth and bring about significant cataclysmic events in ten to twenty years, and possibly sooner. Together the scientists present a huge body of wide ranging science to back up their assertions by historical evidence of similar events of worldwide destruction, and also the science to show how this will come about.19
At the end of the Millennium, there appears to be a very significant trial for the earth to go through. Before qualifying for exaltation, a trial must be faced and overcome. It is after this is accomplished that one is presented at the river and given the opportunity to attempt a crossing by giving the correct solution to the problem of the sea monster or spiritual death. If the answer is given, instead of being swallowed by the gaping jaws of hell, we are lifted into the waiting arms of the Lord.
The battle of Gog and Magog is the great trial the earth and her children will pass through at the end of the Millennium.20 When that final battle of the long-fought War in Heaven has finally ended, the earth will be ready for her crossing. What form will that monster present at the Celestial Nile River at the center of the Milky Way? We believe it is a gigantic black hole that guards the way. The heart of the earth will be weighed at the heart of the Milky Way. The question begs to be answered, but this is not the center of the universe where Kolob is. A satisfactory answer to that needs to wait until more groundwork is laid and there is more room for the explanation. We hope it suffices here to suggest that proxies can be doors.
Astonishingly, to those who have eyes to see and ears to hear, it is clear that the Father and the Son are giving away the secrets of the universe! If only you and I can avoid being offended by their generosity. (Neal Maxwell, "Meek and Lowly," devotional address given at BYU 21 Oct. 1986)
It is only in the last year that the science has been confirmed that unlocks certain understandings of creation and of coming events. This article will only give an overview of the science and at a later time we will go into greater depths with more documentation. Before giving references here and looking at what the scientists are writing, we want to summarize our assertions.
The confirmation of dark energy that fills space gives credence to the prevalent ancient beliefs that space is filled with a sea of primordial substance which is the building blocks of creation. The Egyptians call this the waters of Nun. It has a double application, both in space, and in the sea waters of the earth. "Dark matter is the unknown substance that astrophysicists have shown is necessary to keep rotating galaxies from flying apart - like gravitational glue to keep clay from scooting off an over-spun pottery wheel."21 The world wide beliefs in the 'wheel of time' fit nicely here.
Many scientists believe there is a connection between this dark energy and a gigantic black hole at the center of our galaxy. They now believe that most if not all galaxies have black holes at their center. What has the scientists so shocked is that it is highly likely that gamma rays are being emitted from that black hole. A black hole, especially one of that magnitude, should be able to swallow and hold onto everything including light by its incredible gravitational pull. In spite of that, evidence does point to the fact that gamma rays are escaping. When these gamma rays strike a particle, it splits into equal parts of matter and anti-matter. This explains the multitude of mythological beliefs in the ancient cultures that the great general of heaven defeated the dragon and made the heavens and earth out of its body, and that the earth is half dark and half light, half good and half evil.
The Sumerians believed the dragon Tiamat represented a force that had to be overcome before the universe could be ordered and created. Marduk (the Michael figure) slew the dragon and formed the heavens from one half the body and the earth from the other half.22 Many African tribes also believed the universe was made from the body of the cosmic serpent.23 Sometimes they described the serpent as a constantly moving power that moved through the universe like a snake and kept all things in motion.24 The Egyptians taught that the giant snake 'Apep', sought to bar the initiate's passage through to the underworld.25 Although this should be generally thought of as a spiritual battle, for the earth, there seems to be a very real monster awaiting her approach to the veil of the Milky Way.
The black hole is estimated to be 3.7 million times the mass of our Sun (give or take 1.5 million). "The laws of physics have ruled out any explanation but one--that this is indeed an enormous black hole."26 Scientists believe that because of the tremendous gravitational pull, any body that approaches this mass will both move at greater velocity and also rotate faster on its axis, thus speeding up time. A report in "Science" calls it "The Milky Way's Dark, Starving Pit."27 There is a Greek legend about a divine mother's milk strewn across the sky. This is the source of the word "galaxy," since "gala" in Greek means milk. The ancient Jewish name for the Milky Way was "river of fire" (nahar di nur).28
Following are excerpts from a science article by Michael Schirber, October 4, 2004, entitled Unexpected Beat in Heart of Milky Way. In past articles we have tied the heartbeat to midnight, the heart of the night, and to the center of the Milky Way. The sound of the heartbeat seems to be coming from the gamma rays:
The most recent detection by the European High Energy Stereoscopic System (HESS) has left little doubt that there are unexpected gamma rays coming from the galactic center. "It is somewhat of a surprise," said Trevor Weekes, the principal investigator of VERITAS. "But the galactic center has always been a bit of a mystery."
Part of the intrigue stems from the fact that the center of our Milky Way is partly shrouded by dust lying in the galactic plane, the same plane in which the Sun and the bulk of the galaxy's outlying stars orbit. The dust absorbs much of the visible light, making it virtually impossible to see into the heart of the galaxy. [Like a veil] But other forms of light, like gamma rays, which are the most energetic type of radiation, are unaffected. That's one reason scientists study gamma rays -- because they slice through the dust and reach our solar system.
The article goes on to say that gamma rays, are described as having "a billion times more energy than the radiation used for X-rays in hospitals." They are absorbed by our atmosphere about twenty kilometers high. The gamma rays interact with dark energy and produce an electron and a positron. A positron is the antimatter and the electron the matter. The initial particles bump into other molecules of air making more electron-positron pairs. A blue flash of light results from this interaction. "The cascade forms what is called an "air shower." This is very interesting when thinking of the primordial waters of life. It makes one think that maybe when the earth begins to move closer to the center of the galaxy, more gamma rays will produce a great 'air shower'. This could have all kinds of consequences. It could also be tied to the image of Aquarius pouring out the waters in the coming age.
Schirber continues in his article to explain that these gamma rays likely come from a jet spewing out from a supermassive black hole, not only from the center of our own galaxy but from others also. "Frankly, no one expected for [the galactic center's] black hole to accelerate particles in this manner."29
We believe this and other science shows the delicate balancing act between positive and negative magnetism. The most prevalent scientific theory says there is breakdown of material from fallen stars (and there is a very interesting subject) that have been swallowed by the black hole at the center of our Galaxy. It is our opinion that the work in the temples assists the smooth function of this process, and the counterfeit usurpation of power used by the false priesthood disrupts this process, bringing about imbalance and creating natural and social upheaval. This is crucial scientific information for us to remember since it is our intention to gradually work our way to a scientific and religious explanation of the Celestial law of Zion that will eventually take the place of the lower law of polarity. In that explanation is found the reason that if the sealing power had not been restored, then all would be lost at the Lord's coming.
It seems likely that the black hole at the center of our galaxy represents the mouth of the whale. It will take faith to believe that the Lord will be able to save this planet from annihilation as we approach that destination and could provide the tension and conflict to help spark the final battle. When the earth passes her final test, she will become Celestialized and move from the crowning ceremony represented in Fac. 2, fig. 2, (Celestial Garden of Eden where Zion prevails and all are unified together for the feast of celebration) to the center spot (fig 1), like the golden king in the lake who organizes and begins his own creation process.
That black hole will do its job. None can pass through the veil to the center of the Milky Way except through divine intervention. The sphinx is guarding the temple of rebirth; Medusa is guarding the heart. If we put our faith in Christ, He will guide and protect us through these coming events: "How often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not."30
Like a serpent,
as lush jungles
to the south,
the river winds
through red rock
struggles to survive
and cliffs cast
on coiled petroglyphs,
Sharon Price Anderson
1WM p. 49
2Ibid p. 241
3Bible Dictionary p. 789
4WM p. 238
6WM p. 60
7Ibid p. 55
9WM p. 243
10Ibid p. 255
11JSP p. 397-8
12WM p. 155
14See Church Ensign, March 1997, Page 16 "The Book of Abraham: A Most Remarkable Book," and Journal of Discourses, 7:163 and 17:143
16http://ancientegypt.hypermart.net/sphinx/index.htm The Celestial Sphinx: The Lost Word and The Lost Secrets
171WM p. 241
18John Major Jenkins, Maya Cosmogenesis 2012
22WM p. 62
23Ibid p. 265
24Ibid p. 277
25Ibid p. 46
2730 May 2003, page 1356