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Simeon Absolves Joseph

Benson C Saili
THIS EARTH, MY BROTHER

Gabriel priest declares Mary’s pregnancy as legitimate   

Simeon was the head of the Abiathar dynasty of priests, which was second in seniority only to the Zadok dynasty of priests, headed at the time (in 8 BC) by Zechariah, the future father of John the Baptist. Simeon also went by the title “Angel Gabriel”, just as Zechariah went by the title “Archangel Michael”.


The terms “angel”, “god”, “holy spirit”, “son of god” etc, have been invested with ethereal connotations not because the Bible says so but because of distorted translations from the original languages in which the Bible was written – Hebrew for the Old Testament and Greek and Aramaic for the New Testament. The Bible has undergone more than 2000 years of corrupt translation incrementally and to the extent that much of what we read in the scriptures today bears very little resemblance to what was originally intended by the writers. On the other hand, the Dead Sea Scrolls had lain intact for more than 2000 years: they had never been tampered with by any single, one person whatsoever. They are therefore very much a reflection of the language of the gospel era and the intent of their authors’ message.


According to the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Essenes did not regard Old Testament “gods” or “angels” as supernatural beings. Whilst they did believe in a supernatural “God” (with a capital “G”), who was the creator of all that existed, they also recognised the existence of “gods” (with a small “g”) who were not supernatural beings but mortals like we all were. These gods were the earthly representatives of God even though they were fallible and therefore errant. Thus in their  (Essenes) midst, there were individuals who carried the titles “Lord”, “Father”, “Holy Spirit”, “Angels” etc.


The Essenes fancied themselves as God’s ambassadors, or special messengers, as well as ministers, or propagators of the word of God.  That is why those in the higher echelons were simultaneously called priests and angels. Contrary to what Christians believe, an angel is not a supernatural being who bears wings. The term angel simply means “messenger” or “ambassador”. Hence the highest ranking Essene, Zechariah the Zadok, went by the title “Archangel”, meaning “God’s chief ambassador to mortals”.

 

The titles Michael and Gabriel were borrowed from Old Testament books. Flavius Josephus, the first century’s foremost historian, talks about  “the names of angels so particularly preserved by the Essenes”. The angelic system is detailed in the apocryphal book of Enoch whilst one of the Dead Sea Scrolls, called the War Scroll, identifies the order of priestly rankings and their corresponding angelic designations. The book of Enoch stipulated that successive dynastic heads (the royal House of David and the priestly House of Aaron) carry the names of the traditional angels and archangels to denote their rank and position.  It was because the book of Enoch revealed too much (for instance, making it clear that angels were not spirits but mortal beings) that it was excluded from the canon.  


In the cuneiform clay tablets, the records of the world’s first-known civilisation called the Sumerians, the Old Testament gods were called the Anunnaki, meaning Aliens – beings who were not indigenous to Earth but came from elsewhere in the cosmos. Low-ranking Anunnaki were  called angels because they were the ones who carried out the mandate of the pantheon, the Anunnaki royalty.  The two seniormost Anunnaki, Enlil (the Bible’s Jehovah) and his step-brother Enki (the serpent of Genesis), were addressed as “Lord”. Their children were addressed as  “archangels”. Of Enlil’s children, his firstborn, Ninurta, was also called Michael, the war angel, whilst his second-born Nannar-Sin was  called Gabriel, the judgement angel.  When Enlil withdrew from the conduct of earthly affairs, he was succeeded by Nannar-Sin. The Essenes knew the Old Testament gods were Anunnaki and not divine beings.  That was why they felt at liberty to use their titles.

RULING BY SIMEON
The third highest ranking priest in the Essene hierarchy was the Levi priest. His angelic designation was Sariel. The Sariel was also called the “Holy Spirit”, though all Essene celibates were  termed holy spirits (in small letters) as  they did not indulge in sex, which, so the Essenes maintained, rendered a person unholy and therefore spiritually unclean. The Sariel was an angelic style conferred on the Davidic King-in-waiting. In 23 BC, when Jacob-Heliakim died, Joseph had succeeded him as the David. However, since he was still single at the time and was only 21 years old, young Joseph’s  grade in the Essene hierarchy was 4, that of a bishop. Then upon his marriage to Mary in June 8 BC, he was conferred Grade 2, that of the Sariel/Levi priest. The Davids were given this designation not as an operative  one but as a honorary title. In other words,  Joseph did not perform priestly functions though he was the Sariel/Levi priest. As the Sariel/Levi priest, Joseph was also now referred to as the Holy Spirit.


As a bishop and as a celibate, Joseph had been under the mentorship of Simeon, the Angel Gabriel, who held Grade 1 (junior only to Zechariah, who held Grade 0). But even as the Sariel, Joseph was also subordinate to Simeon. Hence it was that when he faced that dilemma in respect of the irregular pregnancy of Mary, he sought the standpoint of his superior Simeon. Simeon would not simply voice an opinion: he would pronounce a binding verdict as his role also included an oracular dimension.    


Now, Simeon was the most level-headed and far-sighted of the high-ranking Essenes of the day. His take was that although Joseph had flouted dynastic matrimonial rules by  rather hurriedly sleeping with Mary and making her pregnant, the matter was a sensitive one as  what was at  stake  was a Davidic heir, the future King of Israel and of the world at large if it was a boy.  Such a child could not be allowed to grow up anonymously, as an orphan and as an illegitimate kid. In any case, Joseph had not committed fornication with Mary as such: betrothal in Jewish custom amounted to marriage in that to break it one needed a formal divorce. Even more important, the child had in truth been conceived within the confines of wedlock albeit in breach of dynastic procreational rules.

 

Joseph had slept with Mary, a virtual wife, and not with somebody outside marriage. Simeon accordingly ruled that the conceived child was not a bastard  but a legitimate seed  “of the Holy Spirit (Joseph)” as per MATTHEW 1:20  and that if male he be recognised as “the Son of the Most High (another title of David and the Davidic heirs)” as per LUKE 1:32.  Furthermore, Simeon decided that Joseph treat the first marriage ceremony, which was due in September 8 BC,  as the second and final marriage ceremony (which was due in March 7 BC).  That said, Joseph was forbidden from having further sexual relations with Mary till three years later if the child turned out to be a girl or six years later if it was a boy (MATTHEW 1:24-25). This was in keeping with the rule that governed dynastic Essene celibates, for whom sex was purely for producing heirs and not for pleasure.


The nativity accounts as they appear in the gospels were only partially historical: they were “spiritualised” for religious purposes. This was done to give  Christianity a better chance of competing with “pagan” religions of the Greek world, whose gods according to age-old legends were born supernaturally. Remember,  the gospels were written after the crucifixion, that is, post AD 33. The nativity stories are therefore retrospective and not contemporary.       

RULING BY BOETHUS
The Essene priestly order was not the same as that obtaining at the Jerusalem Temple. The Essenes had their own temple at Qumran, a miniature version of the Jerusalem Temple. That’s why we find that whereas in the Essene hierarchy the High Priest was Zechariah, at the Jerusalem Temple the High Priest was Simon Boethus, an appointee of King Herod who was in office from 23 to 5 BC. King Herod had also appointed himself the nominal head of the Essene and the Temple priesthood as he had vested interests in both. Some office-holders among the Qumran fold were also arbitrarily appointed by Herod.


As High Priest of the Temple proper, Simon Boethus was politically senior to both Zechariah and Simeon. Therefore, when Simeon made his ruling on the matter of Joseph and Mary, he was under obligation to report his verdict to Boethus.  When Simeon so did, Boethus altered the verdict, therefore overruling Simeon in some respects. Whilst he agreed that Joseph and Mary proceed to tie the knot, he insisted that the child Mary was carrying was illegitimate. The baby therefore had to be born in the section of Qumran where orphans and illegitimate children were brought up and not in a regular home. 


The controversy of the conception of Jesus is why Mathew mentioned Mary along the four matriarchal Jewish women who had been tainted by a sexual scandal of some sort in his genealogy.  Mary never committed adultery: she simply became pregnant at a time a dynastic spouse was not supposed to. Technically therefore, she had committed fornication. As such, her son Jesus was to become a somewhat polarising figure. The Jewish fundamentalists held that having been born of fornication, he was automatically disqualified as a Davidic heir. On the other hand, the liberal Jews were of the view that he did qualify as a Davidic heir in that although he was born unprocedurally in terms of dynastic procreational rules, he was born within marriage as in Jewish custom betrothal was as good as marriage.   Be that as it may, the scandal of his birth continued to resound throughout his life.  

MARY CONFINED TO “MANGER”
About 1 km south of the Qumran plateau was a building which was at once noble and ignoble, actually more so of the latter.  This building was used for two main purposes in the main. The first was as an enclave in which orphans as well as illegitimate and abandoned babies were raised in what was called monastic custody. When they grew, these children renounced marriage, gave themselves to a totally celibate existence, and devoted themselves to serving the Essene priests. The second use was as an isolation unit for women who were menstruating. The Essenes regarded menstruating women as unclean; hence they had to have their own, isolated quarters.


The building was known as the Queen’s House. This was because its superior, the overall superintendent, was the wife of the Davidic heir, in keeping with what was called grail service, that is, humble service to the indigent that was expected of a Davidic Queen.  Since Joseph was the David and his marriage to Mary was now cast in stone as per Simeon’s ruling, Mary as the Davidic Queen was now the overseer of the Queen’s House. Thus when Boethus ruled that Mary’s baby had to be born in the Queen’s House and therefore Mary had to be confined there, Mary was not stigmatised as such given that she could have ended up there anyway by virtue of her being the Davidic spouse.  


The Queen’s House had arisen on a site that had previously housed an animal stable. There were in fact a few animals around the premises still. The whole compound therefore had another name – a Manger. It was called by yet another name. The Essenes had nicknamed Qumran as Judea. In line with this nomenclature, the Queen’s House was alternatively known as … Bethlehem of Judea. You will now appreciate that when the gospels say Jesus was born in a manger in Bethlehem of Judea, that does not mean he was born in the town of Bethlehem and was placed in a feeding trough for animals. What it means is simply that he was born in the Queen’s House at Qumran. Sadly, most Christians, including college-trained pastors, are not aware of this stark fact because they base their understanding of the life of Jesus on a rather shallow interpretation of the gospel narratives. I refer them to the Dead Sea Scrolls, which will properly enlighten them.

NEXT WEEK: SIMEON AT NAZARETH

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Export Processing Zones: How to Get SEZA to Sizzle

23rd September 2020
Export Processing Zone (EPZ) factory in Kenya

In 2005, the Business & Economic Advisory Council (BEAC) pitched the idea of the establishment of Special Economic Zones (SEZs) to the Mogae Administration.

It took five years before the SEZ policy was formulated, another five years before the relevant law was enacted, and a full three years before the Special Economic Zones Authority (SEZA) became operational.

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Egypt Bagged Again

23rd September 2020
Samson

… courtesy of infiltration stratagem by Jehovah-Enlil’s clan

With the passing of Joshua’s generation, General Atiku, the promised peace and prosperity of a land flowing with milk and honey disappeared, giving way to chaos and confusion.

Maybe Joshua himself was to blame for this shambolic state of affairs. He had failed to mentor a successor in the manner Moses had mentored him. He had left the nation without a central government or a human head of state but as a confederacy of twelve independent tribes without any unifying force except their Anunnaki gods.

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‘RO, ‘RO ‘RO YOUR ‘BOT

23rd September 2020

If I say the word ‘robot’ to you,  I can guess what would immediately spring to mind –  a cute little Android or animal-like creature with human or pet animal characteristics and a ‘heart’, that is to say to say a battery, of gold, the sort we’ve all seen in various movies and  tv shows.  Think R2D2 or 3CPO in Star Wars, Wall-E in the movie of the same name,  Sonny in I Robot, loveable rogue Bender in Futurama,  Johnny 5 in Short Circuit…

Of course there are the evil ones too, the sort that want to rise up and eliminate us  inferior humans – Roy Batty in Blade Runner, Schwarzenegger’s T-800 in The Terminator,  Box in Logan’s Run,  Police robots in Elysium and  Otomo in Robocop.

And that’s to name but a few.  As a general rule of thumb, the closer the robot is to human form, the more dangerous it is and of course the ultimate threat in any Sci-Fi movie is that the robots will turn the tables and become the masters, not the mechanical slaves.  And whilst we are in reality a long way from robotic domination, there are an increasing number of examples of  robotics in the workplace.

ROBOT BLOODHOUNDS Sometimes by the time that one of us smells something the damage has already begun – the smell of burning rubber or even worse, the smell of deadly gas. Thank goodness for a robot capable of quickly detecting and analyzing a smell from our very own footprint.

A*Library Bot The A*Star (Singapore) developed library bot which when books are equipped with RFID location chips, can scan shelves quickly seeking out-of-place titles.  It manoeuvres with ease around corners, enhances the sorting and searching of books, and can self-navigate the library facility during non-open hours.

DRUG-COMPOUNDING ROBOT Automated medicine distribution system, connected to the hospital prescription system. It’s goal? To manipulate a large variety of objects (i.e.: drug vials, syringes, and IV bags) normally used in the manual process of drugs compounding to facilitate stronger standardisation, create higher levels of patient safety, and lower the risk of hospital staff exposed to toxic substances.

AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY ROBOTS Applications include screw-driving, assembling, painting, trimming/cutting, pouring hazardous substances, labelling, welding, handling, quality control applications as well as tasks that require extreme precision,

AGRICULTURAL ROBOTS Ecrobotix, a Swiss technology firm has a solar-controlled ‘bot that not only can identify weeds but thereafter can treat them. Naio Technologies based in southwestern France has developed a robot with the ability to weed, hoe, and assist during harvesting. Energid Technologies has developed a citrus picking system that retrieves one piece of fruit every 2-3 seconds and Spain-based Agrobot has taken the treachery out of strawberry picking. Meanwhile, Blue River Technology has developed the LettuceBot2 that attaches itself to a tractor to thin out lettuce fields as well as prevent herbicide-resistant weeds. And that’s only scratching the finely-tilled soil.

INDUSTRIAL FLOOR SCRUBBERS The Global Automatic Floor Scrubber Machine boasts a 1.6HP motor that offers 113″ water lift, 180 RPM and a coverage rate of 17,000 sq. ft. per hour

These examples all come from the aptly-named site www.willrobotstakemyjob.com    because while these functions are labour-saving and ripe for automation, the increasing use of artificial intelligence in the workplace will undoubtedly lead to increasing reliance on machines and a resulting swathe of human redundancies in a broad spectrum of industries and services.

This process has been greatly boosted by the global pandemic due to a combination of a workforce on furlough, whether by decree or by choice, and the obvious advantages of using virus-free machines – I don’t think computer viruses count!  For example, it was suggested recently that their use might have a beneficial effect in care homes for the elderly, solving short staffing issues and cheering up the old folks with the novelty of having their tea, coffee and medicines delivered by glorified model cars.  It’s a theory, at any rate.

Already, customers at the South-Korean  fast-food chain No Brand Burger can avoid any interaction with a human server during the pandemic.  The chain is using robots to take orders, prepare food and bring meals out to diners.  Customers order and pay via touchscreen, then their request is sent to the kitchen where a cooking machine heats up the buns and patties. When it’s ready, a robot ‘waiter’ brings out their takeout bag.   

‘This is the first time I’ve actually seen such robots, so they are really amazing and fun,’ Shin Hyun Soo, an office worker at No Brand in Seoul for the first time, told the AP. 

Human workers add toppings to the burgers and wrap them up in takeout bags before passing them over to yellow-and-black serving robots, which have been compared to Minions. 

Also in Korea, the Italian restaurant chain Mad for Garlic is using serving robots even for sit-down customers. Using 3D space mapping and other technology, the electronic ‘waiter,’ known as Aglio Kim, navigates between tables with up to five orders.  Mad for Garlic manager Lee Young-ho said kids especially like the robots, which can carry up to 66lbs in their trays.

These catering robots look nothing like their human counterparts – in fact they are nothing more than glorified food trolleys so using our thumb rule from the movies, mankind is safe from imminent takeover but clearly  Korean hospitality sector workers’ jobs are not.

And right there is the dichotomy – replacement by stealth.  Remote-controlled robotic waiters and waitresses don’t need to be paid, they don’t go on strike and they don’t spread disease so it’s a sure bet their army is already on the march.

But there may be more redundancies on the way as well.  Have you noticed how AI designers have an inability to use words of more than one syllable?  So ‘robot’ has become ‘bot’ and ‘android’ simply ‘droid?  Well, guys, if you continue to build machines ultimately smarter than yourselves you ‘rons  may find yourself surplus to requirements too – that’s ‘moron’ to us polysyllabic humans”!

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