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Lucifer is Created

Benson C Saili
THIS EARTH, MY BROTHER…

He was the head of the angelic host and was created not by God but by the Paal Taal

The First Source, the Prime Creator we generally call God, resides in the Central Universe of the unum/ multiverse. As we posited last week, the unum is not all there is in existence: it is part of the greater omniverse, which is infinity, whereas the unum is not infinite though there are any number of unums in the omniverse. Although one single unum has limited capacity, within this limited capacity is inconceivably colossal room for expansion as we saw in last week’s illustration.

The First Source is not the only God in the greater universe known as the omniverse. He is simply one of an infinite number of Gods. But he is the God of his own region of the omniverse, the God of his unum. He is First Source only relative to us as his creation. He was not always God though: at one point in eternity past, he was just like you and I, an ordinary and primitive being in a cosmic context who arose in another unum as a creation of another God.

Then over time, he evolved both spiritually and knowledgewise and finally qualified to be a God in his own right and went on to found his own unum, just as we finally qualify to be full-fledged adults to begin our own families and run our own households. Every sentient being at long last becomes a God with his own unum.

Trust me, you and I, My Brother, shall be our own God in the fullness of time, with our own fiefdom of universes and with our own-created life forms! I can imagine my good friend Assam Makwinja as Almighty God presiding over his own unum and comparing notes with the likes of Henry Segopa and Boikobo Monakwane from their own unums! That is our preordained destiny in our evolution as spirit-souls.

The First Source rules over 7 superuniverses, also known as superdomains, in his unum. Our part of the unum is the very seventh of these superuniverses. The expression “I’m in the seventh heaven” is very well-informed indeed as all these superuniverses are heavenly (that is, cosmic) domains. Metaphysicists also say there are seven planes of being, also called dimensions, with this physical dimension we inhabit referred to as the Third Dimension. 

Even at the level of the astral, the realm we transition to after we die, it is said there are seven phases  of existence. The reason there is such recurring analogy centred around the number 7 has to do, primarily, with the baseline structure of our seven-part unum.

The First Source resides in the centremost region of the Central Universe as any God ideally would. Call it the hub of the Central Universe and the very nerve centre of the overall unum. He is not the sole dweller of the Central Universe though. There are other beings who occupy the Central Universe. These beings are known as the Central Race. At the cosmic level, they are known as the Paal Taal, meaning “Creator Gods”.

THE CENTRAL RACE

The Paal Taal are the first beings our God created, the firstborn of  First Source (when the apostle Paul referred to Jesus as “the Firstborn of all creation”, he simply meant Jesus was   an incarnation from the ranks of the Paal Taal). Although they too dwell in the Central Universe, they are well removed from the hub where God resides. The Paal Taal reside on the fringes, or the borderline, of the Central Universe because they have not yet attained a degree of holiness that qualifies them to be near God’s dwelling.   

The Paal Taal, also known as the Builders amongst other names, were created from God’s own essence, from the building blocks of his own substance we can loosely term as DNA. In other words, they were made in his own “image and likeness”, a phrase we also encounter in the opening verses of Genesis in relation to the Anunnaki’s genetic engineering of Adam and Eve.

God created the Paal Taal simply by thought, or sound, since thought is not silent: it is sound, though it can only be heard mentally and not through the physical senses. When you are God, you are capable of bringing about anything you desire simply by wishing or speaking it into existence.  

Why did God create these beings? Contrary to what the Bible or Christians say, he did not create them in order to worship him day and night and do his bidding vassal-style. Worship, in case you didn’t know, is vampirism: it sucks out the energy of the worshipper and bolsters the energy of the being who is being worshipped. 

He brought them into existence as a medium through which he could fan out into, populate, and constructively exploit his own domain.  In other words, he created them as his cosmic ambassadors, cosmic pioneers, cosmic explorers and ultimately cosmic inheritors. In bringing them into being, he was driven not by a sense of power and domination but by a sense of love and service to his creation as opposed to service to he himself.

In our case us human beings, when we produce children, the idea, fundamentally, is to propagate our genetic imprint, to perpetuate ourselves. That is a means by which we seek to ensure that the Saili flame, the Makwinja (Assam) flame, the Ramakoba (Thato) flame, the Daewood (Rakim) flame, the Kusasa (Tumelo Alexander) flame, the Matumo (Vincent) flame, etc, will keep burning for eons to come barring a catastrophe of some kind. God also wants to reproduce himself so that his progeny can take possession and occupancy of the inconceivably vast acreage of cosmic real estate at his disposal.

Otherwise, if he elected to occupy the unum alone, it would all be sheer waste, a nonsensical underutilisation. At the end of the day therefore, all sentient beings are one at their very basic essence inasmuch as this stems from the substance of one overall creator.     

According to the Corteum, the Aliens from Sirius B who have been working with the top-secret Labyrinth Group since the 1950s, the Paal Taal are divided into seven tribes to accord with the seven superuniverses they watch over. A renegade ex-member of the Labyrinth Group, Jamisson Neruda, says, “The galaxies in which the Paal Taal reside are approximately 18 billion years old and their genetics are immeasurably more developed than our own. They are the optimal soul carrier in that they can co-exist in the material world and the non-material dimensions simultaneously. This is because their genetic blueprint has been fully activated.”

GOD PRECSRIBES A FREE WILL UNIVERSE

Having created the Paal Taal, God proceeded to create the entire structure of his unum jointly with them as if from a cosmic assembly line with a view to teach them the tricks of the creation trade, just as we humans would want to teach our children, particularly the firstborn, certain moral and even occupational competences in life so that they are as virtuous and proficient as we are.  

Since the seven superuniverses that he had created needed to be seeded with life forms, God taught the Paal Taal how to create the whole spectrum of  life, from the highest to the lowest forms though at the time they concentrated on the higher life forms such as angels and humanoids.

God had decided that Superuniverse No. 7 was going to be a free will universe. In other words, the beings that were to dwell in it were to conduct their lives according to their own rules, wishes, and whims. Neither he, God, nor the Paal Taal   were to directly interfere with their affairs whatsoever. 

Says Stewart Swerdlow, who as an Illuminati instrument in a macabre project known as Montauk had occasion to interact with beings from other worlds for many years and so learnt a great deal about God and the universe: “God does not directly interfere with the personal lives of his thought-creations. He does not have an agenda. Contrary to popular belief, he does not judge, interfere, or change anything that is already created. He allows for freewill of all his creations. In this way, all possibilities unfold. Nothing is ever stopped from being.”

Be that as it may, the created beings were going to be responsible for their own misdeeds. In other words, they were going to reap what they sowed. If they made a shambles of things, they would suffer the full brunt of cosmic consequences. It would be a lesson for them not to repeat the same mistake if they were wise.   

Now, although God created the Paal Taal from pinches of his own energetic signature, he did not put them on an equal footing with himself. He did build into them the potential to be like him but they had to incrementally work toward the realisation of this potential.

Godhood was a status to be earned and not to be liberally and casually conferred.  The reason God refrained from making the Pal Taal exactly like he was – all-knowing and all-powerful straightaway – was because he had written into their energetic DNA the capacity to do good and commit evil. If he had wired them in such a way that they were inherently sin-free, that would have reduced them to robots inclined towards only a particular pre-programmed disposition.

It would have been tantamount to creating an artificial being, a kind of android, instead of a natural being prone to all possibility. He wanted his creation to be subject to the same regimen of  karmic experience as he had undergone himself in another unum, to be able to voluntarily exercise their freedom of choice and not to operate like a puppet Chester Missing style.    

That, however, did not mean his creation were going to be left wholly to their own devices. The do’s and don’ts, along with their ramifications, were spelt out to them in advance but it would be up to them to decide whether to heed them or disregard them altogether. God was no dictator.       

ANGELS APPEAR FIRST

The Paal Taal were the only species God directly created. The creation of other sentient beings was assigned to the Paal Taal themselves, who were to apply the creation cues God had given them. The Paal Taal, however, did not proceed to create every life form that we know. They restricted themselves to higher life forms. These were, first, what we call angels, and then humanoids, our genotype.

The angels were the intermediaries between the Paal Taal and humanoids. They were senior to humanoids in that they were created first and were superior in their capacities.  Yet they were limited in some ways than humanoids were.  For instance, whereas humanoids were capacitated to inhabit both the dense and finer realms (the spiritual world and the physical world), angels were not designed to incarnate into the material realms.   They were restricted to the same spiritual realms the Paal Taal dwelt in.

The role of angels was to watch on humanoids wherever they were and guide them wherever they asked for guidance (by way of thought) and comfort them where they needed comfort.   They were caretakers of the humanoid agent on behalf of the Paal Taal. Every one single humanoid was assigned his own guardian angel.  All the service rendered to humanoids by angels was to be done not physically but telepathically, that is, at the level of the mind.

Both the angelic and humanoid forms were not created by the Paal Taal all at once: they experimented many times over to finally come up with an ideal product. Remember, the Paal Taal were not God but creatures just like we are and therefore were not perfect.

Besides, they had to be careful in what kind of product they came up with as ultimately they would be responsible for all its deficiencies: God would make them accountable for every single one lapse.  Through continuous tweaking and fine-tuning of energetic DNA, the Paal Taal eventually became master geneticists.

It is the Paal Taal who designed our DNA at the spirit-soul level, that is, the energetic DNA. The physical DNA is simply a material and poor imitation of the energetic archetype designed by the Paal Taal. It is the Paal Taal who have a patent on our DNA.

That’s why even highly advanced humanoids such as the Anunnaki, who genetically engineered Earthlings into existence, still haven’t mastered it fully. Most of the genetic flaws that we carry are not the result of genetic rigging as such: they stem from the Anunnaki’s inability to fully understand the workings of our energetic DNA.

The Paal Taal did not create angels of the same level of sophistication. The first fine prototypes were much more advanced in ways.

These became what we generally refer to as archangels. Their overall leader was Lucifer. Note that I use the term Lucifer in its generic context, in the manner it is commonly understood by the mass of mankind. Lucifer’s actual name is not known. Every cosmic race has its own name for him.  In those primeval times, he was hundred percent loyal to the Paal Taal. He was not created by God as your pastor will readily preach: he was created by the Paal Taal.

NEXT WEEK: LUCIFER TAKES ISSUE WITH HIS CREATORS

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Honesty – a fundamental human characteristic

12th October 2021

“When honesty is lost, then wait for the Hour (the Day of Judgment)”.  These are the words of Prophet Muhammed (pbuh).  They paint a picture of the time leading up to the Day of Judgement, when righteous people will be sorrowful due to the lack of honesty around them. 

Influence of materialism

Honesty, like morality, is an in built and essential characteristic of every human but the influence of materialism and the greed and desire for status, position, fame, wealth, etc. have wreaked havoc in human society, to an extent never seen before. In the 21st century, we live in a world where honesty is less valued than ever before and in fact even shunned at times.  We expect people to be honest in their dealings with us yet we ourselves promote deceit and dishonesty through our action and speech on a daily basis.  Many of us even watch and applaud television shows and movies that promote and encourage lying, infidelity and deceitfulness.

Desire for worldly gain

In the corporate world, ‘deceitful’ statements and figures are announced and pronounced to lure investors, glamorous yet deceitful adverts to attract customers, etc. have all become the norm and honesty goes out of the window. Even in the media industry, honesty seems to be waning very rapidly. Let alone the due regard of one’s conscience but without a second thought or due consideration of the rights of the others, stories are churned out with so-called “sensational” add-ons, etc. simply for the sake of being the “first” to break the news or for the sake of having the “best” story or maybe even for the sake of just having increased an readership or viewership.

Thoughtless individual behaviour

Without thinking, we indirectly teach our children that dishonesty is acceptable.  When we expect our children to tell the caller on the telephone we are not home, this is a lesson in deceit.  When we answer the cellphone and say that we are busy in a meeting yet we very much relaxed and free, or we say we are out of town yet we are at home, etc. we are being blatantly dishonest. When we refuse to settle our debts and dues making all sorts of pretences, we are actually lying.  We admonish and reprimand our children for lying, yet the reality is we have been their teachers.  Whether we tell lies, or whether we allow our children to live in a world surrounded by deceit, the lesson is learned and the honesty begins to disappear from the hearts of people – in particular the next generation.

Integrity and reliability

We must understand that honesty incorporates the concepts of truthfulness and reliability and it resides in all human thought, words, actions and relationships.  It is more than just accuracy; it is more than just truthfulness, it denotes integrity or moral soundness.  Belief in God Almighty commands truthfulness and forbids lying.  In the Holy Quran, God Almighty commands that humans be honest: “O you who believe!  Be conscious of God Almighty, and be with those who are true (in word and deeds).” (Ch  9 : v 119). A renowned Holy Quran scholar explained the meaning of this verse.  He said, “Being truthful and adhering to truthfulness, means you will be among the people of the truth (by speaking and behaving in a truthful manner) and be saved from calamity and that is what will really make a way out for you from your problems (in the long run)”.

Honesty and truthfulness go hand in hand

A true Believer, one who is truly submitted to God, has many characteristics by which he/she can be identified.  The most obvious of these noble characteristics are honesty of character and truthfulness of speech.  Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him) was a perfect example of honesty.  The records of history clear show that even before he was bestowed Prophet hood by The Almighty, he had earned the titles of “As Saadiq” (the truthful) and “Al Ameen” (the trustworthy one), within the community. They had full trust in his honesty and integrity to such a degree that they would accept anything he said. Prophet Muhammed (pbuh), once gathered all the people of Makkah at the base of Mount Safa and asked them, “O people of Makkah!  If I say to you that an army is advancing on you from behind the mountains, will you believe me?”  All said in one voice, “Yes, because we have never heard you telling a lie.”  All the people, without exception, swore to his truthfulness and honesty because he had lived an unblemished and extremely upright life among them up to that point in time – for forty years.

Honesty in a comprehensive manner

This honesty, an essential ingredient of the human character, includes being truthful towards God by worshipping Him sincerely; being truthful to oneself, by adhering to God’s laws; and being truthful with others by speaking the truth and being honest in all dealings, such as buying, selling, social interaction, marriage,etc.  There should be no deceiving, cheating, falsifying or withholding of information, thus a person should be the same on the inside as he/she is on the outside.

Prophetic teachings

Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) informed us of the great benefits of living in an honest and truthful way and warned us of the dangers inherent in dishonesty and falsehood.  He said: “Truthfulness leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise.  In addition, a person keeps on telling the truth until they are recorded by God Almighty as a very truthful person.  And falsehood leads to wickedness (and evil-doing), and wickedness leads to the (Hell) Fire. In addition, and a person keeps on telling lies until they are recorded by God Almighty as a very great liar”.

For those who wish to be among the truthful, Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) has left us with these words of guidance, “Let he who believes in God and the Last Day either speak good or (otherwise) remain silent”.

A successful, vibrant society is based upon honesty and justice, and is intolerant of dishonesty in all its various forms.  The Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) exhorted the faithful to be scrupulously honest in all their social dealings, business transactions, etc. at all times.

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A Sham of a Trial

12th October 2021

Verdict a foregone conclusion as Pilate is bought

Although the interrogation of  Jesus in a joint hearing by Annas and Caiaphas was not a trial, General Atiku, it was more or less conducted along the lines of a trial.

Jesus had a defending witness. This was one of  his disciples, Bartholomew, whose real name was John Marcus. Apparently, Jesus was allowed only one such witness. Besides his principal accuser, the turncoat Judas Iscariot, there were a number of witnesses who testified against him. The gospels  refer to them as false witnesses but this is probably an exaggeration: they simply misunderstood some of his statements largely because he tended to use allegorical language, which could be properly interpreted only by Gnostics. On occasion, he chose to be deliberately ambiguous, as when he said, “Do to Caesar what is due to Caesar and to God what is due to God.”

The crux of the matter  was whether there was anything in his conduct that could associate him with the Zealots. For example, he was accused of harbouring and voicing designs to destroy the Jerusalem Temple within “three days”. The Zealots did band about such threats, General. In truth, what they sought to destroy it was the Temple establishment – the priesthood and the Herodian Sadducees. The perception was that these somewhat benefitted from Roman patronage. Thus, if Jesus did instigate doing way with the Temple establishment by foul and crook, this could obviously not sit well with Annas and Caiaphas, both of whom belonged to this clique. But Jesus’ words had been taken out of context. In Gnostic language, the Temple (the correct translation should be “palace”  as the Jewish word for temple and palace is the same)   was the human body because it housed the real being – the spirit-soul. So what Jesus was saying to those who wished him ill, General, was that even if they physically killed him, his soul would continue to live (a person can be clinically dead but at the etheric level, he is irreversibly dead only after three days). Clearly, General, he was grossly misunderstood.

Jesus vehemently denied being a Zealot. He made it clear to the panel that every time he taught or preached, he was heard to promote peaceful co-existence with Rome. How then could he be a Zealot, who preached enmity with the Romans? Put differently, General, Jesus was saying he had played no part whatsoever in the November 32 AD riots against Pilate. The fact that Simon Zelotes was his father-in-law was pure happenstance.

In their heart of hearts, both Caiaphas and Annas were aware Jesus was not inclined to violence and therefore could not be a  Zealot. So the matter they seized upon was his claim to be Priest, Prophet, and King. This was what revolted them the most, the sin for which they sought to teach him a lesson.  The gospels say they set men (the Jerusalem Temple police who had escorted Caiaphas) on him who blindfolded him, slapped him around, spat on him, and dared him to “prophesy” as to “who has hit you” – a sneering allusion to his claim to be Priest and Prophet as only the High Priest could prophesy. This physical mockery did probably take place but there is an underlying symbolic language, General.  When a person was spat upon (by a “holy man”, such as the  High Priest),  it meant he had been demoted from priest to a mere layman. A “blind man” was another characterisation for an Essene who was of Grade 8 level, a novice. A novice was not yet initiated and therefore he was blind because he had not yet “seen the light”, that is, not yet been illuminated.

What it all boils down to, General,  is that by decree of the three priests Annas Sr, Caiaphas, and Jonathan Annas, Jesus had been downgraded from Grade 2, the third position in the Essene hierarchy (the first two being Grades 0 and 1), which was the position of the Davidic King (now held by his young brother James), to Grade 8, the position of a novice, a virtual nobody. Thus, when he appeared before Pontius Pilate, that was the status he would declare when his occupation was asked of him. This lowly social status would significantly bear upon Pilate’s psychology and therefore his contemplation of Jesus.

PETER DOES A JUDAS

Now, when a hearing or trial was in progress, General,  the Essene rule was that there had to be two doorkeepers. These were two people who were close to the person who was the subject of the proceedings, typically a relative and an associate/friend.

In the case of Jesus, the doorkeepers he selected were Simon Peter and his mother Mary. Besides being Jesus’ disciple, Simon Peter was Jesus’ personal bodyguard and chief ecclesiastical minister. As the Davidic King, Jesus was entitled to a bodyguard and chief spokesman, both roles of which were ably performed by Peter. That made Peter arguably the closest to Jesus in an occupational sense. As for Mary, she substituted for Jesus’ wife Mary Magdalene, who was now three months pregnant and therefore was on mandatory separation from her husband according to Essene dynastic procreational rules. The two doorkeepers ceremonially opened the doors for the panelists or judges to enter the hearing room. As the male doorkeeper,  Simon Peter stood by the door in the inner corridor whilst Mary stood by the same door in the outer corridor.

Peter, however, had been assigned another role – that of the rooster of the night. The rooster that crowed three times as per the gospels was not a bird, General: it was Simon Peter. “Rooster”, or “Cock”,   was the term for a religious person assigned to call out the time. Remember,  they had no clocks those days and at nighttime, the sundial, which was used during the day to read time, could not be used. So during a momentous occasion such as this one (the week of Passover), a person was detailed to announce the time every three hours at Qumran. Since Jesus’ hearing took place shortly before midnight, Peter was expected to announce the times at 00:00; 3 am; and 6 am. 3 am was specifically called cock-crow (see MARK 13:34). It was just before 3 am that Peter “denied”  Jesus. He did not deny him at three intervals, General: he denied him only once but before three inquisitors.

Now, Simon Peter was also a Zealot, a point we have long underscored. It explains why in the gospels he comes across as combustible, argumentative, and highly assertive. He was known as Simon Bar-jonah, which has been wrong translated as “son of John”. Bar-jonah actually derived from “baryona”, which was Aramaic (the most widely spoken language of the day in Palestine) for “outlaw”. We know, courtesy of  Flavius Josephus, that Zealots were referred to as outlaws by the Romans. So as Jesus was being interrogated, one of the witnesses against him made mention of the fact that he must have been a Zealot since his own bodyguard was a Zealot. Peter was therefore instantly called upon to confirm or deny that he was a Zealot. As could be expected, Peter stoutly denied he was. He also proceeded to say that he was not as close to Jesus as many people thought.

Once he had exculpated himself, Peter resumed his vigil as doorkeeper. The hearing lasted for hours and there were intervals in between, during which Peter also took time off to warm himself before a fire. During one such break, Mary, Joseph (Jesus’ second brother)  and James (the son of Zebedee) also confronted him and demanded to know why he  without shame or scruple just stopped short of disowning Jesus. Peter was unflinching, saying they were all mistaken: he was not as close to Jesus as they thought. It was at this point that he stood up to announce the time 3 am for the hearings to resume. Shortly thereafter, it dawned on him that he had stabbed Jesus in the back and later apologised teary-eyed to Mary. The man Jesus called “Rocky” was far from being a rock: he was a chicken, a flip-flopper.  Maybe it was no coincidence, General, that on this fateful night he was assigned the role of a male chicken!

That said, Peter had very valid reasons to deny Jesus anyway. Jesus had elevated Judas Iscariot to his second-in-command in an independent Israel at the Last Supper and Peter was irate that that role should have been entrusted to him and not to Judas. Maybe Jesus deserved Peter’s betrayal given that Peter had served him loyally through and through both as a bodyguard and confidante.

JUDAS TREACHERY BACKFIRES

Pontius Pilate, General, arrived at Qumran towards 6 in the morning to conduct a kangaroo court trial for the people wanted for the November 32 AD uprising in which some Roman soldiers were killed. Why, if we may ask, General,  did the Roman governor have to travel all the way from Jerusalem, where he was based during the Passover week, to Qumran and not insist that the trial be held in Jerusalem itself?

There were two reasons for this in the main. First and foremost, there was something in it for him. He had been backhanded with a tantalising bribe by Herod Agrippa to excuse Judas Iscariot. We know Pilate was hopelessly weak where it came to palm-greasing and extra-legal trials. Philo, the Jewish philosopher and historian who was a contemporary of  Pilate, records that Pilate was prone to corruption (a streak that ran through all Roman governors and of which the emperor himself was acutely aware) and “continuous executions without even a form of a trial”. Second, a trial of the leading Zealots in Jerusalem at Passover time would have provoked another uprising as Jerusalem at this time of the year swarmed with Galilean pilgrims most of whom were either Zealots or pro-Zealot. Qumran was therefore a safe venue as it was remote and was not crawling with too many people. The trial would thus pass practically unnoticed by the wider population.

Arriving at Qumran, Pilate was determined that he was going to sentence the culprits (save for Judas of course) to death. The November uprising had tarnished the record of his emperor: it was the only insurrection in Judea during the reign of  Tiberius Caesar. Pilate would use the sentence as a showcase to the emperor that he was a no-nonsense man who did not in the least brook dissident tendencies.

Now, Herod Antipas had learnt of Agrippa’s bribe to Pilate and he and Agrippa rarely saw eye to eye, being rival claimants to the Jewish monarchy.  Antipas was aware that the crucifixion Jesus would be subjected to would not be fatal but a partial one that would ensure his survival. However, Theudas Barabbas was too old to bear the strain of even partial crucifixion whereas Jesus and Simon Zelotes were much younger. Chances therefore were that Barabbas might perish right on the cross.  So in a private meeting with Pilate before the trial commenced, Antipas offered Pilate a bribe substantially higher than that which Agrippa had given him. Accordingly, the two agreed that Judas should be reinstated as a culprit. At the same time, Barabbas should be released. It was game, set, and match, General.

MAKE-BELIEVE REFERAL TO ANTIPAS

The trial was held in the north vestry, the same place where the hearings by Annas and Caiaphas took place. Annas, Caiaphas, the Herods, and the brothers of Jesus were in attendance.

The trial, General, was a farce. The proceedings were almost wholly orchestrated. On trial was Judas Iscariot too, who courtesy of  the Antipas bribe had been re-arrested, bringing the number of  respondents in the dock to four. Judas, as the overall commander of the Zealots, pleaded guilty. That is what the gospels mean when they say he “hung himself”. Now penitent of having falsely implicated Jesus, Judas also told the court that Jesus was innocent and had played no part whatsoever in the November 32 AD insurrection. Judas’ absolution of  Jesus is what is cryptically referred to in the gospels as “returning the 30 pieces of silver to the chief priest”, meaning he no longer was leader of the 30-man group that John the Baptist had established: its leadership had now reverted to the current Essene high priest Jonathan Annas. Judas was resultantly sentenced to death by crucifixion along with Simon Zelotes and Theudas Barabbas.

However, General, Agrippa was determined that Jesus be found guilty in order to get even with his brother-in-law Antipas. He and Caiaphas were in full flow, insisting that Jesus not only was a “Galilean”, which was another code name for Zealots, but he urged Jews to refrain from paying taxes and also fancied himself as “King of the Jews” when that title now belonged to Emperor Tiberius Caesar. This was treason and for that he deserved to die.

Although Pilate had no intentions of acquitting Jesus (it was he who was to be sacrificed for Barabbas as per his stratagem with Antipas), he at least wanted to superficially cast himself as a reasonable and impartial judge. Judas had exonerated Jesus and the priests had countered that. So Pilate announced to the gathering that since Jesus was of Galilean origin (he feigned ignorance of the fact that the term Galilean was used in the context of  his being a Zealot), Herod Antipas, under whose  jurisdiction Galilee fell, was to break the ice. Antipas was asked to try Jesus in another room and whatever verdict he rendered would be binding. This aspect was not part of the pre-plan with Antipas but Antipas did welcome it nonetheless as it openly underlined that in the eyes of  Rome, he took precedence over his rival Agrippa. As for Agrippa, all he could do was froth at the mouth. From that day on, General, Pilate became his mortal enemy: on the other hand, Antipas and Pilate became abiding friends.

NEXT WEEK: JESUS SACRIFICES FOR HIS BROTHER

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Distress Flare

12th October 2021

No one could have predicted what we have just gone through with COVID 19, lock downs, State of Emergency, banning of international travel etc. etc. In fact that’s not quite true as many had been predicating the possibility of a global pandemic for a while – I guess it was the case of not listening or not wanting to listen.

This week I was left thinking what life would be like if the internet crashed. This was prompted after being deprived of social media when the services of Facebook, Instagram & WhatsApp were disrupted for hours on Monday night. I am not much of a user of the 2 former platforms but I do use Whatsapp extensively and even had a call scheduled on the app which I was clearly unable to make. It is also the main way that I keep immediately updated of family whereabouts, comms etc.

Like many I felt quite cut off even though I could have made a normal telephone call or gone on the internet and sent mail messages. People kept saying that the internet was down because to some people Facebook is the internet!  Twitter, realising this, saw it as the perfect time to enjoy its rare spotlight and tweeted “Hello literally everyone” from its main account. It garnered 2.4 million “likes” in just four hours and a stampede of users eager to sign up.

In other parts of the world where apps are essential to commerce, health care and basic functioning of government it was a serious matter. In India, doctors sounded the alarm about being unable to coordinate their schedules or share patient scans. And in Malaysia, some small-business owners were left without a way to manage day-to-day operations as all business communications are conducted through the app.

In many developing countries, services including WhatsApp, Facebook and Facebook Messenger have become deeply integrated into the delivery of primary health care, education and other government services,” Marcus Leaning, a digital media education professor at the University of Winchester in the U.K., said. “In the global North, we tend to (merely) use such services as supplementary to other channels of communication, so the global outage will have a disproportionate impact.”  These platforms are also often offered on restricted-access (or non-smart) phones, meaning that those on lower income were disproportionately  disaffected in 3rd World countries, our own included.

Meanwhile, as netizens (citizens of the internet) were feeling somewhat inconvenienced and annoyed, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg took a financial hit losing $6 billion in just a few hours as Facebook stocks plunged, principally through lost advertising revenue and loss of business confidence and he himself personally dropped to No. 5 on the list of the world’s richest, below Gates. Talk about a bad day at the office!

The impact on myself was considerably less but with my ability to WhatsApp stopped I did feel quite put out and wondered what it would be like if the whole internet crashed one day and what that would it do to the markets, the military, the hospitals, not to mention how would I be able access all the movies on Netflix?

It couldn’t really happen, could it, if you understand that all the internet is, is a bunch of interconnected computers and that they would all have to crash at once? Conventional wisdom tells us that as a planetary network of computers and machines the internet is too big, too decentralised and too redundant to all fail at once?  But wait! Didn’t they say something similar when the Titanic was built? Surely the lessons of that hubris are still valid today?

According to Laura Brandimarte, Assistant Professor, Management Information Systems, University of Arizona, ‘Everything being connected today may bring along significant convenience, but it also implies that everything can be hacked. What if the nation’s power grid were successfully attacked? No electricity also means no internet access. The internet also relies on physical infrastructure, such as subsea cables and other fiber cables: any infrastructure issues (cable cuts, damages), whether due to criminal activity or natural disasters that were to affect major subsea cables could potentially shut down the Internet.

In a different sense, authoritarian governments can also potentially shut down the internet if they somehow all colluded against it, either blocking internet access to citizens altogether (we have seen that in Egypt during the Arab Spring, for example, or in the Democratic Republic of the Congo  HYPERLINK “https://www.rappler.com/world/regions/africa/81477-dr-congo-block-internet-kinshasa” \t “_blank” during a period of unrest); or substantially limiting it (we see that in countries where internet censorship is widespread and information access is controlled by the central government, as it happens in China). There are ways around censorship, of course: Privacy Enhancing Technologies, or PETs, such as virtual private networks or VPNs, and anonymous browsers such as Tor, can help circumvent it, but censorship essentially prevents the vast majority of the population, who may not be familiar with these tools, to access the internet, de facto making it disappear.’

And there are natural disasters that also could create havoc.   Patrick Juola, a computer science professor at Duquesne University, offers up one such interplanetary electronic disaster. “A sufficiently powerful solar flare could produce an electromagnetic solar pulse [EMP] that would shut down most of the computers in the world. While some systems are protected against EMPs, any human-built protection is only so strong, and the sun can be a lot more powerful.”

 

An internet crash resulting from this type of solar flare sounds like science fiction or one of those once-every-10,000-years events, but it isn’t. The worst recorded X-class (highest level) solar flare, called the Carrington Event, was a coronal mass ejection that produced a geomagnetic storm that spread across the earth over two days, September 1-2, 1859. The storm produced auroras around the world. The ones in the northern hemisphere reached as far south as the Caribbean, and were so bright people in the north-eastern United States could read newspapers by their light at night. The major electric utilities affected were the telegraph systems that failed across Europe and North America. The telegraph pylons threw sparks and shocked operators still at their keys. 

The frequency of recorded CMEs is worrying. Less powerful geomagnetic storms were recorded in 1921 and 1960, and a 1989 storm disabled power over large sections of Quebec. Then, on July 23, 2012, a “Carrington-lass” solar superstorm narrowly missed the earth by nine days when it crossed the planet’s orbit.

The Titanic was built to be unsinkable – all engineers and scientists agreed to that. Yet obviously they had not thought of every conceivable scenario and so when the boat was in the wrong place at the wrong time, the rest, as they say, was history. The same must be true of the internet. The thing that can take it down – not so much governmental censorship but some of that super global warming we hear so much about – could yet prove its downfall.  Now that really is solar power!

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