One is entombed live and kicking; the other is hung on a stake
With the Enkites having refused to surrender Marduk to the Enlilites and having pronounced forth his acquittal, the headstrong Inanna-Ishtar decided to take the law into her own hands. She unilaterally declared war on Marduk, challenging him to emerge from the Giza Pyramid so the two could engage in a military showdown, failure to which she would reduce the great structure to rabble.
In his response, Marduk dismissed her threats with the contempt they deserved. He said he was not in the mood to pit military wits with a trigger-happy amazon. He dug in his heels in the “Ekur”, as the Great Pyramid was otherwise called. Inanna took Marduk’s response as a dare and decided to teach him a lesson. She got into a fighter craft which was loaded with an array of weapons that deployed by the press of a button, set course for the Giza Pyramid, and took indiscriminate aim. She had just instituted the Third Pyramid War, in which she was literally the only belligerent. Both the Enkites and Enlilites urged her to cease fire but she gave them the middle finger, vowing that she was not going to stop till the structure “fell to the ground.”
She “ceased not striking at its corners, even its multitude of stones”, according to the Sumerian records. At some stage, Marduk thought he had had enough of this relentless, one-sided broadside at an iconic structure that was the most prestigious symbol of Enkite power. He radioed a message to Enlil that if Inanna was not tamed, he would resort to the use of a weapon “whose outburst was terrible”. This was a weapon Enki had prevented him from using at the height of the Second Pyramid War.
Fearing the possible ramifications, the Enlilites became frantic. They sent an urgent message to King Anu on Nibiru beseeching him to help ram sense into his intractable great granddaughter who was also his mistress. The response was quick in coming: the king ordered that Inanna withdraw and that Marduk appear for trial before an Enlilite tribunal. The message was accordingly relayed to Marduk who “despite the anger of his heart” and “clear tears into his eyes” consented to the idea of the trial. The trial was held in a temple that stood by a river bank within the vicinities of the Giza Pyramid. The case was prosecuted by Inanna.
MARDUK IS SENTENCED TO A SLOW DEATH
Although the tribunal was an all-Enlilite affair, it was far from partial. Inanna prayed for the death penalty but the bench was dead-set against this course of action, insisting there wasn’t a scintilla of evidence that Marduk had a direct role in the death of Dumuzi. But a game Inanna wasn’t yielding either: she countered that if Marduk could not get a direct death penalty, at least he deserved an indirect death penalty as the circumstances in which Dumuzi died arose from Marduk’s scheme to frame him with the concocted rape of Geshtinanna. Indeed, in her testimony, Geshtinanna confessed to having plotted the whole thing with Marduk and said she regretted the abominable deed. She also made it clear to the bench that the scheme did not extend to causing the death of Dumuzi, thus absolving Marduk of premeditated murder.
Having digested Inanna’s petition, the panel asked her what form Marduk’s indirect death sentence should take. Inanna proposed thus: “There is a way to sentence Marduk to death without actually executing him. Let him be buried alive within the Great Pyramid! Let him be sealed there as in a gigantic envelope – a great envelope that is sealed, with no one to offer him nourishment. Alone he should suffer, with the potable water source cut off … Let the encased hiding chamber be Marduk's stone coffin.”
It was game, set, and match: Marduk was sentenced to “entombment” alive in the Great Pyramid of Giza. He was going to be dungeoned right within the innards of the pyramid, in a sealed compartment known as the King’s Chamber. But there would be no luxury to indulge even if it would be staring all around him. For a day or two, he’d have a bit of air to breathe all right but no food or water, meaning he’d be dead within weeks, or at most a month if he was a strong guy. As if that was not harsh enough, he’d be without artificial light of any from – in absolute darkness.
Marduk was accordingly stripped of his regal attire and draped in a shroud to symbolise the fact that the solitary chamber of his confinement was a virtual coffin. But he did not allow himself to be led away meekly, like a sheep to the slaughterhouse: he resisted with every fibre of his being as he angrily and vociferously enunciated his innocence. The Enlilite police were forced to give him a bloodied nose in a bid to neutralise him. His father Enki and his mother Damkina, who were present at the trial, shed a copious amount of tears as they watched their firstborn son weather the furious assault.
During the first week of Marduk’s incarceration, his supporters ran riot throughout Egypt. They had pitched stone-pelting battles with those sections of the Egyptian community who revered Enlil and Inanna. It took a heavy-handed response by Ishkur-Adad, coupled with Enki’s repeated appeals for calm, to quell the nation-wide unrest.
SPARE MARDUK, PLEADS NINMAH
The first to raise a hue and cry about Marduk’s plight was his firstborn son Nabu. Nabu had boycotted the trial, which he had pre-dismissed as a travesty of justice, as a kangaroo court of some sort in that one clan was at once prosecutor and judge. Now upon learning that his father was set to languish in the bowels of the Giza Pyramid, he immediately left Borsippa, his cult city in Sumer, to check on his condition. By the time he arrived at Giza, however, Marduk was already in confinement and an indefinite prohibition to entry into the pyramid was already in place.
Equally gutted was Sarpanit II, Nabu’s step mother. Following the death of his Earthling wife Sarpanit in 3800 BC, Marduk had re-married. This time around, he had chosen a half-sister, a daughter Enki had with his step-sister Ninmah. The name Sarpanit was now a title for Marduk’s spouse and so his new wife also went by the same name. Sarpanit II too had boycotted the trial of her husband but when she learnt of his slow-death sentence, she set up a wailing racket.
Then with her step son Nabu in tow, she set course for Enki’s mansion on Abu Island, whereupon she implored him to do something to have his son spared from certain demise. Enki in his usual diplomatic style first suggested that Sarpanit II approach Inanna’s father Nannar-Sin and her twin-brother Utu-Shamash, who being her closest relations were best-placed to prevail over her to file for a prerogative of mercy. Where that failed, she should approach Ninmah and beseech her to broker a meeting between Enlil and himself.
Sarpanit II paid heed and mobilising priest-astronomers, she went to see Sin and Shamash in the presence of Inanna herself. “Reciting prayers and incantations,” say the Sumerian records, “offerings were made to Ishtar (by the astronomer-priests) that she may show her mercy. The high priest appealed to Sin and to Shamash: ‘Restore Bel (Marduk) to life!’” But Inanna simply wasn’t budging. “For the death of my beloved, the Instigator (Marduk) must die!” she thundered in response, adding that if only she was the one to directly erase him from the face of the Earth.
Having hit a brick wall, Sarpanit II then proceeded, as per Enki’s suggestion, to approach Ninmah, Dumuzi’s grandmother. Ninmah, who was as tender-hearted as Enki, had sympathy for Sarpanit notwithstanding that it was by the machinations of her husband that she lost a treasured grandson. Soon she had arranged a meeting with Enlil, with her own son Ninurta in attendance. Ninmah proposed that Marduk be released and sent into exile under one strong precondition – that he relinquishes his entitlement to supremacy in the forthcoming Age of Aries and that that right be ceded to Ninurta. “Punishment to Marduk must come, death is not warranted,” she posited. “Let Marduk in exile live, the succession on Earth to Ninurta submit!”
MARDUK SENTENCE COMMUTED
Both Enlil and Ninurta endorsed Ninmah’s proposition, as did Inanna herself. When the proposition was relayed to Enki, he embraced it not wholeheartedly but with resignation. “If between succession and life the choice is, what can I, a father, say?” Enki muttered. The Enlilite tribunal sat again and announced a new verdict – from death by hunger and suffocation to exile, which was a typical pronouncement for erring members of the Anunnaki pantheon. Ninurta then tasked a certain Nusku to promulgate the news to all the Anunnaki. Ninurta’s own wife Gula, who was also known as Bau, even provided Sarpanit II with a set of new clothing and sandals for Marduk as a gesture of goodwill.
It was Ningishzidda, the architect of the Giza Pyramid, who was called upon to undertake the arduous task of extricating Marduk from his predicament. Zidda took days to do so as it was like prying open a strong room purely by mechanical rather electronic means. By the time Zidda made the breakthrough, Marduk had already passed out. It was thanks to Zidda’s resuscitative prowess that Marduk came to. He was given food and water and although he did not gain his full strength there and then, he was able to talk.
When Enki spelt out to him the terms and implications of his release, Marduk was furious. He made it clear that whilst he was prepared to go into exile, there was no way he was going to trade his imminent rulership of Earth for anything under the Sun. “I would rather die than my birthright forfeit,” he underscored. The Enlilites were disappointed but half a loaf was better than nothing: Marduk and Sarpanit II were immediately made to embark onto a skyship and flown to the “Land of No Return”, where “horned beasts are hunted”. This was the Amazonian wilds of South America.
Marduk, however, was not destined to live long in exile this time around. According to a Babylonian text titled The Death and Resurrection of Bel-Marduk (metaphorically speaking), it turned out Dumuzi did not die accidentally as such but was startled into falling below the boulder he stood on behind the Nile cataract by one of his pursuers, an Anunnaki. This pursuer, dubbed “The Evil One”, later confessed. He was ultimately “smitten and slain”. With the real culprit having surfaced, Marduk was exonerated and his exile came to a sweetly quick end.
INANNA BARRED FROM HUBBY’S FUNERAL
With the Marduk saga having concluded, the official funeral of Dumuzi now had to proceed. It was to be held in the “Lower Domain”, that is, southern Africa, which was Nergal’s fiefdom. The venue was Nergal’s palace, where the body of Dumuzi had lain in state since it was retrieved from the banks of the Nile. Every Anunnaki whose name was not Marduk was called upon to attend the funeral except Inanna, who was barred from doing so by Nergal’s wife Ereshkigal, the ceremony hostess. Why her?
First, let us appreciate that as the widow, Inanna had to be at the funeral as a matter of course. It was she who was to take the remains of her husband to Nibiru for burial. However, Inanna had indicated to Enki, Enlil, and her father Sin that she would not fulfil that obligation if one strong precondition was not met – that of Nergal taking her hand as wife No. 2. Now, that is not as outlandish a stance as it may sound. According to the Anunnaki’s marital and succession laws, a surviving brother was under obligation to marry his late brother’s widow even if he was already married. The idea was to produce a heir so that the deceased’s name “shall not be blotted out”. This law would later apply to Enlil’s chosen people, the Jews, as crystal-clearly set out in DEUTERONOMY 25:5-10.
Dumuzi had several brothers but Marduk as firstborn had the prior right to execute the levirate marriage with Inanna. Having been implicated in the death of Dumuzi, however, Marduk had already forfeited this eligibility, which meant Nergal, who was next in the sibling pecking order, had to step into the breach. With Marduk and Zidda now out of contention for the rulership of Egypt, Nergal was practically a shoe-in. This prospect, more than anything else, was what Inanna wished to position herself for – as the next Queen of Africa at the expense of Ereshkigal and possibly the next Queen of Earth if Nergal perchance became the new Enlil in the Age of the Ram, a direction in which she would do her utmost to nudge him.
Having gotten wind of the stirrings of what Inanna was indeed up to, Ereshkigal disinvited her from attending the funeral. She didn’t want to afford her a platform to pitch her levirate propaganda and sensitise Nergal up-close on the idea. Ereshkigal feared that if the levirate marriage with her husband took place, Inanna might go to any lengths imaginable to supplant her as Nergal’s Queen given her penchant for bare-knuckle tactics in achieving any end. Furthermore, Inanna’s son with Nergal would in future be the cause of endless succession polemics.
Inanna, however, was not the one to take any obstacle flung her way lying down. Parrying the advice of Enlil, Enki, and her father Sin to keep away from the funeral given Ereshkigal’s veto of her prospective presence there, she vowed she was going to make a showing come rain or shine and that she was going to create one hell of scene right at the palace if her wish to marry Nergal and produce a little Dumuzi was not granted. And when Inanna made up her mind, nothing would stand in her way.
INANNA IS KILLED
Nergal’s palace in today’s South Africa was its own, gated estate with oodles of acreage. In order to reach the plush edifice itself, one had to negotiate seven gates, where they were thoroughly vetted by heavily armed guards using very sophisticated scanning equipment. Maybe Nergal was paranoid but he didn’t want to let his guard down in the slightest and consequently court harm. Security was particularly heightened on this occasion with the entire Anunnaki royalty in attendance.
Inanna arrived at the palace with great pomp and circumstance. Accompanied by a posse of gun-wielding body minders, she was clad in “emblems and regalia of divine status”, with miniature, high-tech weapons concealed under her clothing. The moment she showed up at the first gate, the gate keepers refused to admit her as per Ereshkigal’s instructions, but she told them in no uncertain terms that if she was barred from entry, she would raze down the palace with incendiary devices that were replete in her plane. “If thou openest not the gate so that I cannot enter,” she went on, “I will smash the door, I will shatter the bolt, I will smash the doorpost, I will move the doors.”
Alarmed, the guards made her presence known to Ereshkigal as well as her threats and upon hearing that, Ereshkigal’s face “turned pale, her lips turned dark”. Ereshkigal then gave orders that Inanna be stripped of her ostentatious royal attire and that she be strip-searched at each gate. Ereshkigal’s aim was to at once humiliate her and ensure that she was completely disarmed. “One by one, the seven gates leading to the abode of Ereshkigal were opened to Ishtar,” the Sumerian records relate.
When at long last Inanna stood stark naked before Ereshkigal, who sat on Nergal’s throne surrounded by seven Anunnaki with a judicial capacity, Ereshkigal “burst at her”. She blitzed her with insults and all manner of vitriol, accusing her of “scheming a heir by my husband Nergal”. Hot-tempered by nature, Inanna lost her cool and charged at Ereshkigal, wounding her badly (she was a decorated martial artist of black belt pedigree) before Ereshkigal’s security detail had time to intercept her. She was there and then arrested, arraigned for attempted murder (probably an exaggeration) and put on trial as the judges were already present.
It was a hasty trial that was no more than a caricature of justice. Inanna was sentenced to a slow death by induced illness on a stake. The judges there and then ordered Namtar, Ereshkigal’s “vizier”, to “let loose against her the sixty diseases” that would kill her practically overnight. But Namtar was not human: the Sumerian records describe him as armless, feetless, and incapable of eating or drinking water. In other words, he was an android. His name actually meant “Terminator”. The Babylonian texts refer to him as “Memittu”, meaning “Angel of Death”. He was a cyborg who was deployed to cause death in all sorts of ways – the Anunnaki’s version of a Tokoloshe.
Once Namtar was done with her, Ninmah was loaded onto a chopper, taken deep into the African wilds, strapped high on a tree trunk, and left to die. All this was taking place without the knowledge of the rest of the Anunnaki pantheon, including Nergal, who were busy with the week-long funeral ceremony in the palace hall.
The Lord’s wife seeks refuge in a European“Wilderness”
In March 37 AD, General Atiku, Roman Emperor Tiberius Caesar died after 23 years in office. He was succeeded by his nephew and adoptive heir Gaius Caligula.
Caligula had forged a fraternal bond with Herod Agrippa, a grandson of Herod the Great, whilst hitherto cash-strapped Agrippa worked at Emperor Tiberius’ court in some capacity. It was on the basis of this mutual affinity that Caligula installed Agrippa as King of the Middle East territories his uncle Phillip the Tetrarch, who passed on in AD 34, had ruled over.
In 39 AD, Agrippa’s regal tentacles spread even wider when he was given the Herod Antipas domains after he politically poisoned the latter to Caligula. Thus it was that Agrippa became Rome’s client King of the whole of Palestine minus Judea. Meanwhile, the tiny territory of Chalcis in Syria was given to Agrippa’s brother Herod, best known to history as Herod of Chalcis, on the pleadings of Agrippa.
It so happened, General, that during the rather short, six-year reign of Agrippa, four Jewish High Priests took turns in office, all appointed by he himself as per authority vested in him by the Emperor. One particular appointment, of a Boethusian High Priest at the expense of the incumbent Mathias Ben Ananus (the apostle Matthew), rankled with radical Jews.
Mathias was replaced in 43 AD, when he was scarcely one year in office. Given that the Boethusians held the Davidic dynasty in contempt, it goes without saying that the apostolate band were irate. In the event, Simon Peter and James the son of Zebedee with typical Zealot radicalismconveniently saw common cause with Simon Zelotes and set about plotting the assassination of Agrippa.
Somehow, General, the Herod establishment got wind of the plot and Herod of Chalcis had James executed and Simon Peter thrown into the slammer pending his own turn at the scaffold.Simon Zelotes and Theudas Barabbas were quick to hit back. First, Simon used his guile and connections to have Peter spirited out of prison, whereupon Peter sought refuge in Rome.
Simon Zelotes is the “Angel of the Lord” spoken of in the relevant passage (ACTS 12:7) asthat was his emeritus title as one of the Essene top brass. Second, Simon Zelotes had Agrippa assassinated by way of snake poison. Although Simon Zelotes got away with this intrigue, Barabbas, General, was not so lucky: as he made his getaway across the Jordan River and bogged down by age-related lethargy, he was seized and summarily executed by decapitation on the orders of Herod of Chalcis.
Simon Zelotes set up a new base in Cyprus, leaving his step-daughter Mary Magdalene in the lurch in Judea. What would be her fate, General, now that she was associated with a fugitive from justice?
SCHISMS IN THE CHRISTIAN MOVEMENT
The accession and rather untimely demise of King Agrippa, General Atiku,had quite significant ramifications on the nascent Christian movement. Of particular import was the relocation of the Qumran community to Damascus in Syria. Indeed, the Dead Sea Scrolls’ Damascus Document makes a point of highlighting “the New Covenant in the Land of Damascus”, which now the Essenes propagandised as the place where the awaited Jewish Messiah would appear and not in Jerusalem as the Old Testament prophets had foretold.
The change of scene, General, was spearheaded by James the Just, the immediate younger brother of Jesus and the incumbent leader of the Christian movement. It was necessitatedby the fear that the perpetually impecunious Agrippa (whilst he was alive, that is), who at some stage had been declared bankrupt, might eventually deplete the Qumran kitty (a portion of which the Herods were entitled to), of which James was the custodian following the ignominious death of Judas Iscariot.
James had also served notice that the Herods wouldhave no part to play in a sovereign Israel, that the conduct of its affairs would be the preserve solely of the Davidic dynasty, which he now headed. As if to underscore this apartness,James even went on to reprise the Star &Sceptre political tag team with Theudas Barabbas (before his assassination), which harked back to a similar partnership of yesteryears between his father Joseph and the same Barabbas, who was still revered as the iconic Zealot revolutionary.
The likes of Simon Peter (who had returned from Rome a free man since his alleged crime had lapsed with the death of King Agrippa as was the practice those days),however, set up their base at Antioch in Syria, which suggests that there was a bit of dissonance between James and Peter at the time. Peter was reinforced by Paul and the latter’s personal doctor Luke, the author of the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts. The Peter faction was also anti-Herod but in its formative stage it touted Peter as the successor to Jesus at the expense ofJames.
In sum, General, there was a three-way split in the Christian movement after Jesus went into obscurity. This was the James party at Damascus, the Peter party at Antioch, and the Simon Zelotes party in Cyprus. It was the Peter party that with the benefit of hindsight stole the thunder in that it was at Antioch that members of The Way began to call themselves Christians. This was in AD 44.
MARY MAGDALENE IN FRANCE
Meanwhile, General Atiku, Mary Magdalene was in a very precarious position. At the time, she was already pregnant with Jesus’ third child, having conceived in December AD 43.It is not clear though whether she too had incurred the wrath of the Herods in view of what her step- father Simon Zelotes had done to King Agrippa, but taking precautions, she sought the protectionof Agrippa’s eldest son, Agrippa II. Agrippa II was only 17 years at the time and was based in Rome under the auspices of Claudius, who had become Roman Emperor in AD 41.
A former student of the Apostle Paul, Agrippa II was well disposed toward the Jesus family and so he readily acquiesced to Mary’s entreaty, whereupon he arranged for her safe passage to the famed Herodian estate in Gaul, France, in collaboration with his other brother Aristobulus. It was in Gaul that the brothers Herod Archelaus and Herod Antipas had by turns been banished by the Roman Emperor after their ouster in AD 6 and 39 respectively .
Mary Magdalene, General,was not all alone on the ship that conducted her to France. She was accompanied by her step-father Simon Zelotes; her mother Helena-Salome; the apostle Philip; the three sisters of Jesus; the wife of James the Just; and Trophimus, who is mentioned in ACTS 20:4; ACTS 21:29; and 2 TIMOTHY 4:20. In his book The Life of Mary Magdalene, Archbishop Rabanus Maurus partly documents the voyage thus: “And favoured by an easterly wind they travelled on across the Sea between Europe and Africa, leaving the city of Rome and all the land of Italy to the right. Then, happily changing course to the right, they came to the city of Marseilles in the Gaulish province of Vienne.” Upon arrival in France, Mary Magdalene had the privillege of being welcomed by the Queen of Marseilles. Once in
France, Simon Zelotes, whobecame known there as Lazarus the Great One, wasted no time in setting up a mission in Provence in south eastern France.
MARY MAGDALENE Vs ROME
Unbeknownst to much of Christendom, including the Christian clergy itself, General, the fate of Mary Magdalene is cryptically documented in the Book of Revelation! It is unfortunate that Revelation is placed last in the New Testament corpus when by rights it should have come immediatelyafter the Book of Acts and not after the21 epistles in between since it is actually a continuation of the Jesus story. Although it is called the Revelation of Saint John, that is a misnomer.
It is a revelation by Jesus Christ himself, who we now know was very much in existence and in circulation more than fifty years after his sham crucifixion. That is exactly what REVELATION 1:1 states,although Christians have naively taken this to be no more thanfigurative language. It was Jesus in his physical, blood-and-fleshform who related much of the contents of Revelation to the apostle John, the literal author of the book. Jesus dictated the account; Johnsimply was the scribe.
The relegation of Revelation (literally “The Unveiling”, the true meaning of the Greek world apocalypse from which the term “Revelation” is translated) to the very extremity of the biblical canon, General,was contrived by Roman Emperor Constantine as the teachings of the Roman Church were founded, primarily, on the writings of Simon Peter and the apostle Paul. Says authoritative historian Laurence Gardner in his book The Magdalene Legacy:The Jesus and Mary Bloodline Conspiracy: “At first glance it appears baffling that The Revelation was included in the New Testament at all, since it follows the post-Resurrection lives of Jesus, Mary Magdalene and their offspring through a balance of the 1st century.
However, the inclusion of The Revelation proved to be a remarkable strategy in that its very esoteric nature enabled Rome to turn it to considerable advantage by misrepresenting its text from the pulpits; this, of course, was at a time when the general populace did not have Bibles to read for themselves.” Gardner goes on to say, “The Church has done its best to put people off this book ever since by portraying it as a sinister work of foreboding and doom. By way of propaganda from the 1662 Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith, even the very word apocalypse has become emblematic of disaster.”
REVELATION CHAPTER 12, General, is particularly pertinent with regard to the saga of Mary Magdalene. It talks about a pregnant woman“clothedwith the sun” and with a “wreath of 12 stars on her head” (Verses 1 and 2).This woman is being pursued and tormented by a “great fiery-red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and on its heads seven diadems” (Verse 3). The dragon’s aim is to “devour her child when it is born” (Verse 4). The woman “fled into the wilderness, there where she has a place made readyby God” (Verse 6).
Despite her trials and tribulations, the woman at long last “brought forth a son, a male, who is about to be shepherding all the nations with an iron club. And her child is snatched away to God and to His throne” (Verse 5). The dragon, though, will never relent: itis “angry with the woman, and came away to do battle with the rest of her seed, who are keeping the precepts of God and who have the testimony of Jesus” (Verse 17).
As wehave reiterated time and again,General, much of the New Testament was writtenin a coded language with a view to keeping the Romans in the dark. Thus in the Book of Revelation, Mary Magdalene is simply referred to as “the woman” and Rome as “the dragon” or “the serpent”.History documents that the Romans did display a reddish dragon on their imperial banner.Moreover, Rome itself was known as the City of the Seven Kings in that this was the total number of Roman emperors before the empire became a Republic in 509 BC.
The woman is of royal pedigree because she is “clothed with the sun”,anage-old symbol of both royalty and divinity. The 12 stars on her head obviously refers to the 12 tribes of Israel, for whom she was the de facto queen being the wife of Jesus,the Davidic King, and the wreath on her head denotes the fact of the nation of Israel’s enduringsubjugation to the Roman yoke.The “wilderness” in this context is France, where Mary Magdalene as related above sought refuge with the assistance of Agrippa II.
The pursued woman did give birth to a male child, which Mary Magdalene did as we shall relate in the next instalment. As a youngster, the child himself met no harm, but his relations, the broader Jesus family and their scions,who became known as the Desposyni or the Sangreal, were continuously harassedby Roman emperors, with some of them put to death, a detail we shall go into at the appropriate stage.
Curiously, General, the Revelation passage indicates that the woman was transported to safety on “two wings of a large vulture”. This suggests an aircraft, and a hideous, military-type for that matter, and not a ship as official history documents. This is not exactly far-fetched considering that the Anunnaki, who flew in aerial vehicles, have been ruling Earth from behind the scenes despite their official departure in the 6thcentury BC. If Mary Magdalene had been earmarked as the progenitor of the planet’s blue blood, which she indeed was, then the Anunnaki had cause to ferry her to France in an aeroplane to make doubly sure she got to France inone piece. It may explain, General, why upon her arrival in France she was welcomed by no less a figure than the Queen of Marseilles herself.
When I was growing up dinosaurs didn’t exist.I don’t mean I’m so old I pre-date the days of the prehistoric beast, simply that in those days, nobody bar a few nerdy scientists, gave them much of a second thought.
But in 1993 all that changed.Movie buffs amongst you will immediately recognise that year as the release year of the original Spielberg Jurassic Park movie.That’s not to say there hadn’t been films portraying these ancient beasts before – several had come and gone, seemingly without a trace, the oldest being from 1933 and filmed in black and white.But what set Jurassic Park apart, aside from the impressive special effects and the sprinkling of magic Spielberg dust, was the relatively recent discovery of DNA and its genetic significance.
The scriptwriters exploited this concept with the quasi-credible discovery of a living lizard species, derived from dinosaur DNA, captured from an ancient mosquito, and preserved for millennia in a chunk of amber.From there several other species are cloned and kept on an island which acts as a dinosaur game reserve, now open to the public.But that wouldn’t have made much of a story, so of course some of the more dangerous dinosaurs had to escape and cause mayhem and murder in the modern world.
The film grossed over a billion dollars and won 3 Oscars for sound and visual effects.And more importantly it generated so much interest in dinosaurs that the study of palaeontology experienced a record increase in applications.
So that’s where all the dinosaur hype and fascination started and since then it has spawned more movies from the same franchise, animated series such as Ice Age, andled to a global fascination with finding out more about these beasts of the past.
But only recently something quite fascinating emerged concerning these creatures, and that is that they began life as much smaller creatures and it was a major climate event on earth which led to their monster growth.This finding is the result of a study between scientists from the UK’s Birmingham university in conjunction with their Chinese counterparts at the China Institute of Mining & Technology. Their joint team of researchers recently presented compelling evidence that massive volcanic events probably helped the dinosaurs diversify and thrive, reaching their monumental sizes.
Their results were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and explain that the Triassic Period, which began roughly 250 million years ago, was a time of massive ecological change after the largest mass extinction event on record.Earlier dinosaurs had been skinnier, more reptilian, less of the massive, marauding Spielberg monsters but it was during this time period that dinosaurs diversified until they became wondrous beasts such as T. Rex and Triceratops, dominating ecosystems all over earth.
Scientists looked at a phase spanning 2 million years during the Triassic Period known as the Carnian Pluvial Episode or CPE, ‘pluvial’ deriving from the Latin word for rain, meaning it was a period of warm, moist, cloudy meteorological activity . During that episode, from 234 million to 232 million years ago there was a huge increase in global temperature, humidity and rainfall — a climate often referred to as a “mega-monsoon.”
Researchers analysed sediment and plant fossil evidence from a lake in Northern China and were able to match four intense phases of volcanic activity with the changes of the Carnian Pluvial Episode.The study links the timing of the episode with four distinct peaks in mercury levels, a well-established indicator of volcanic activity,which led to changes in the vegetation.
“We’re often able to link volcanism to global warming, but our study is unusual in that we’ve also linked it to periods of intense rainfall,” said Jason Hilton, a paleobotanist at the University of Birmingham in England and co-author of the study. “With each pulse of volcanism, we see an increase in plants adapted to wet and aquatic… settings.” Jing Lu, a researcher at the China University of Mining and Technology and also a co-author of the study, added that these eruptions “were powerful enough to drive evolutionary processes during the Triassic. During the episode, plant species that couldn’t adapt to the more humid environment went extinct, as did a number of animal species, from large reptilian herbivores on land to small gastropods in the water. “These changes freed up ecological space for other groups of organisms such as dinosaurs, to thrive”
But every dog, and every dinosaur, has their day and the dinosaurs also faded away, most likely due to a massive meteor strike on the surface of the earth in what is now modern-day Florida, which set up a massive tsunami and eventually resulted in a global Ice Age, temperatures too cold for dinosaurs to survive.
If there’s a moral to all this paleo-historical research it is that earth’s climate is governed by many factors, one of which may indeed by petrol fumes in the atmosphere but many of which are completely beyond our control.Another massive meteor strike may occur next week or it may not. We could see a sudden surge in volcanic activity again or we might not.But most of all the lesson is that talk of what is good or otherwise for the planet is based on a false premise.Whatever happens on the surface of the earth, it keeps on spinning round and round the sun every 365 ¼ daysas it has done since the Big Bang and there isno reason to suppose it will cease to do so, even if it were to transform into a an arid desert in its entirety.That is the embodiment of perpetual motion, a force which man has yet to master.
No, what people really mean is ‘good for trying to keep the planet just the way we like it’ which is rather different and may be a complete impossibility.Indeed mankind, like the dinosaur, may become extinct at some point in the future as part of the natural way of the world.
Jesus is admitted into the “Kingdom of Heaven”, which was a metaphor for the Essene priesthood
At Qumran, General Atiku, there were a number of caves on the cliffside (Qumran overlooked the Dead Sea), located not very far from the site where the crucifixion had taken place. Two of these caves were particularly important. One was Cave 4. Cave 4 was called Abraham’s Bosom. It was the burial cave for the Davidic King and the Pope, the Father of the Essene community. Across the chasm from Cave 4 was Cave 8. This was the burial cave of the Davidic Crown Prince. It was also known as Paradise.
Putting politics aside, the rightful Davidic King was Jesus and the Crown Prince was his immediate young brother James. Thus Cave 8 was owned and taken care of by James. The Dead Sea Scrolls confirm this. One text thereof, called the Copper Scroll, says ‘there was a tomb of the son of the third Great One”. In the Essene hierarchy, the third-ranking person was the Davidic Messiah, Jesus. But Cave 8 would not have belonged to his son in that he had no heirs yet. As such, it belonged to James, who was next in line till Jesus produced a heir. Also in Pesher, the term “son of” meant “next in line” or “deputy”.
Cave 8 had another purpose – a storage of money that was in the custody of James. This was Essene initiation fees paid by Gentiles. It was entrusted to the care of the more cosmopolitan Davidic princes, who directly received the money because coming from Gentiles it was regarded as unclean money. Because James was in charge of these funds, he was cynically referred to as “The Rich Man”. This explains why Joseph of Arimathea (James) is characterised in the gospels as a rich man.
Cave 8 and Cave 7 were adjoined. The two caves had one entrance through the side of the roof, with steps leading from the entrance down to the floor of the cave. The entrance was covered with a huge stone that only people on the outside could roll away. The remains of the two joined caves can be seen even today in the ruins of Qumran. When Jesus was brought down from the crucifixion tree by James, he was laid in Cave 8 in keeping with his Davidic status. Judas and Simon Zelotes were laid in Cave 7. Note, General, that had he actually died, Jesus would have been placed in Cave 4.
Since this was the eve of the Sabbath, guards were posted around the caves to see to it that when the Sabbath took effect at midnight, Sabbath rules were not infringed upon in any way, shape or form. Ananus, the youngest son of former Jerusalem Temple High Priest Annas, was one of those who stood guard. In particular, he wanted to ensure that none of the three men in the tomb was removed during the Sabbath. He was to alternate with Theudas Barabbas, who had been strategically posted there as shall become clear shortly.
THE DEATH OF JUDAS
At midnight, when Ananus took leave of his vigil and Theudas Barabbas replaced him, the latter stole into the cave (of course he had help to remove the huge stone cover). In the Passion story, Barabbas is disguised under the name Nicodemus (meaning “Conquering One,” exactly as Barabbas was hyped in his capacity as a leading Zealot revolutionary). The gospel of John says Nicodemus brought with him myrrh and aloes. From the nature and workings of these herbs, General, it is easy to tell what exactly transpired in Cave 8.
Myrrh is used as a sedative (a drug that calms a patient, easing agitation and permitting sleep). This of course was used on Simon Zelotes, who along with Judas had been brought down from the crucifixion trees fully conscious. Both had received substantial scourging from the Roman soldiers and were therefore in acute pain. They badly needed some sleep as a form of provisional escape from the pain.
Aloes are a strong and fast-acting purgative (a substance used to induce rapid bowel movements so that the bowels are quickly emptied). No doubt these were used on Jesus to expel the poison that he had been fed as he hung on the tree. This was a task to which Theudas Barabbas as head of the Theraputae was best suited. The Theraputae specialised in knowledge of medicines and poisons, including snake poison. In fact, one of their assassination “weapons” was snake poison. In 44 AD, for instance, Herod Agrippa I was murdered by the Zealots with snake poison. In his second volume, the Acts of the Apostles, Luke ascribes Agrippa’s death to having been “eaten with worms”. The term worms was a metaphor for snakes and snakes was a metaphor for the Theraputae top brass.
Now, the emplacement of Jesus, Judas, and Simon Zealotes in the cave, General, was not only about hoodwinking Pilate. It was primarily about fulfilling a ritual. This was excommunication of the three from the Essene fold. However, the excommunication of Jesus and Simon in particular did not have the blessings of Herod Antipas, who was very close to Simon and held Jesus in high esteem, who he recognised as the bona fide Davidic King.
So Antipas had schemed with Simon Zelotes that while in the cave, he should reclaim the status ofPope, currently held by Nathaniel, and invoke papal powers to reinstate both and Jesus and he himself. This had to be done within three days of the crucifixion as beyond that excommunication would be irrevocable. This explains, General, why there were such frantic efforts to medically attend to the men in the cave.
The herbs and therapeautic methods employed by Barabbas worked like a charm and the following day Simon and Jesus felt much better. Accordingly, Simon Zelotes wasted no time in reclaiming the papacy and exercised it by lifting the excommunication ofJesus and he himself. This gesture was communicated to the Jewish establishment by Barabbas. Sadly, Judas Iscariot, General, received the short end of the stick.
He never benefitted from the medical attention Jesus and Simon received. Simon denounced him as a traitor for betraying his colleagues. The adjoining cave – Cave 7 – had a ventilational window. Judas, who had been weakened by scourging, was thrown out the window. Hurtling headlong down the cliff, he landed on some jagged rocks and with his stomach punctured his bowels spilt out. His death is recorded partly accurately by Luke in ACTS 1:18.
SIMON FORMS OPPOSITION PARTY
Early on the morning of the first Sunday after the Passover Sabbath, Mary Magdalene, pregnant with Jesus’ first child, pitched up at Cave 7. She could have come on Saturday but movements of a certain radius were forbidden on Sabbath Day. Mary as the wife of Jesus was anxious as to his condition: she wanted to ensure that he indeed was safe, that he had indeed survived the crucifixion ruse.
The gospels say she encountered two angels. Of one such angel, MATTHEW 28:3 says: “His countenance was like lightning and his raiment white as snow.” This, General,is either cryptic language or simply a distortion on the part of the translators. We already know by now that Simon Zelotes was nicknamed “Lightning”. We also have seen that he had at this juncture challenged Nathaniel for the status of Essene high priest, that is, that ofthe Archangel Michael, and so had garbed himself in priestly attire with a view to reinstating to the Essene fold both Jesus and he. Thus, the correct translation should read, “His countenance was like that of Simon Zelotes in his priestly vestments”.
MATTHEW 28:2 reads, “There was a great earthquake and an angel appeared”. Ancient records do not mention a single earthquake in Palestine in the first century. Once again, General, this was pure allegorical language. Earthquake was another of the nicknames of Theudas Barabbas. He was an angel because Simon Zelotes had designated him his No. 2 in the Essene hierarchy, that is, the Angel Gabriel. Thus, the two angels Mary saw were Simon Zelotes and Theudas Barabbas.
Mary also saw another man who at first she mistook for a gardener. Garden was another name for Cave 8. It was likened to the Garden of Eden, or Paradise – another of its nicknames – because the person in its charge, James the brother of Jesus, became the second Adam when he challenged Jesus for the status of the Davidic King. James was thus the gardener Mary thought she had seen. But it wasn’t James: it was Jesus. Apparently, Jesus and James looked very much alike.
Realising that it was Jesus and not James, Mary was overcome with emotion and fervidly reached out to hug him but Jesus kept her at bay. Why, General? Because according to Essene dynastic protocols, she was not, as a pregnant spouse, allowed physical contact with her husband for at least three years.
All in all, General, the three men at Cave 8 had, with the blessings ofHerod Antipas, declared themselves as the heads of the new Essene shadow council of the 12 in opposition to the official one led by Nathaniel pending official elections. Simon Zelotes was the shadow Michael; Barabbas the shadow Gabriel; and Jesus the shadow Sariel. But it would take six more months before they became formally so.
JESUS FINALLY IS PRIEST-KING
Although the so-called crucifixion took place in the relative quiet and seclusion of Qumran, General, it was not meant to be kept under wraps for long. Pontius Pilate wanted to demonstrate to his subjects that the key people in the AD 32 uprising had been dealt with decisively. The crucifixion though was publicly announced after the Passover celebrations were done with. This was tactical on the part of Pilate: he did not wish to foolishly provoke another uprising at a time when Jerusalem was teeming with the highly radical Galilean pilgrims.
By the time the crucifixion became common knowledge, however, General, Jesus was sufficiently fit to make appearances to people who were close to him – his family members and his so-called disciples. He would later appear to a gathering of over 500 at Qumran, most of whom were Diaspora Essenes. To those who did not know about the crucifixion ruse, he had conquered death.
He was therefore hailed as a veritable Messiah. Voices now clamoured to make him Priest-King – the Melchizedek, the very status that he had laid claim to and that had put him at odds with the Jerusalem establishment. Jesus was careful though in his post-crucifixion appearances: he tactfully picked his audience and cautiously timed his showings. He didn’t wish Pilate to get wind of the fact that the crucifixion was a hoax. In fact, very few Jews were aware he had survived the crucifixion.
Meanwhile, General, Simon Zelotes decided to make political capital out of what had transpired. In his campaign for the papacy, he boasted that it was he who was responsible for “the miracle in the tomb”. Hence, his marks of respect too grew exponentially. From that point on, he became known as “Simon Magus”, that is, Simon the magician. With his popularity reaching such dizzying heights, he was in September 33 AD elected as Pope, thus replacing Nathaniel.
With his accession to the papacy, he decided to heed the wishes of the people and have Jesus installed as the Melchizedek. This event is what has come to be known as the Ascension although it has been wrongly interpreted as a physical entry into Heaven, the abode of God. It is captured by Luke in ACTS 1:9, which reads, “After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight”.
The incident, General, is nothing more than the admission of Jesus into the priesthood as Priest-King of Israel. The “Kingdom of Heaven” was the inner sanctum of the Essene priesthood. Jesus was conveyed into this inner sanctum by his brother James, who now unequivocally recognised him as such, and ordained by Simon Zelotes and Theudas Barabbas (the “two men who stood by in white apparel” as per ACTS 1:10–11). It was the Exodus imagery at play here General. “Cloud” was another title of James.
It was a cloud that had led the ancient Israelites into the Promised Land (EXODUS 13:21-22) and the appearance of God on Mount Sinai had been accompanied not just by thunder and lightning but by a cloud as well (EXODUS 19:6). Thus, the terms “Thunder” (Nathaniel); “Lightning” (Simon Zelotes); “Earthquake” (Theudas Barabbas); and “Cloud” (James) were retained as symbolic designations in the Essene community.
If Jesus didn’t die in AD 33, what was his life like in subsequent years and when did he actually die? Thanks to the Pesher device, this we can partly glean from the book ofActs, the Pauline epistles, and the book ofRevelation.
NEXT WEEK: THE LORD SETS ABOUT PERPETUATING THE JESUS STOCK!