Fig. 12. Ardanari Iswari
Fig. 12 is a figure of this kind. It is a copy of an original drawing made by a learned Hindu pundit, for Win. Simpson, Esq., of London. It represents Brahma Supreme, who, in the act of creation, made himself double, i.e., male and female, as indicated by the crux ansata in the central part of the figure, which occupies the place of the conjoined triad and yoni of the original; the original being far too grossly shown for the public eye. The reader will notice the triad formed by the thumb and two fingers and serpent in the male hand, while in the female hand is to be seen a germinating seed, indicative of reproduction of
father and mother. The whole stands upon a lotus flower, the symbol of androgenity.
This figure is of interest as a study; not as a work of art, but to measure the outcropping of primitive ideas. The extremities of the right Bide are less masculine than those of men, though the broad right shoulder and chest are conspicuous compared with the feminine left. The dolphin fish on the head is a supplemental female symbol, as was mentioned before, on the subject of "Fish and Good Friday." The yoni and the crescent on the forehead are not distinctly shown in Mr. Simpson's figure. We have added them in this, in imitation of the same personage in Moore's "Hindu Pantheon." They denote the preponderance, of the Yonigic bias of faith over the Lingasic. When the two personalities-male and female--are thus combined in one, the mystic number counts as a
AMONG church paraphernalia and ecclesiastical ornament we find many mystic figures. A very ancient and prominent one is been in his form, Fig. 13,
[paragraph continues] Venus, Iswari and others in that garb. The priests put on female habiliments in which to perform their sacred rites, as the most pleasing, characteristic, and to make themselves like their Creator. On the other hand, women put on male attire. When religious rule instigates to sex consideration in dress, it is but a short step to a more overruling consideration of devout sex intercommunion and behavior, of which see sequel.
These visible emblems may have been needful for an uncultured people, but Paul discarded them in visible form, though he seems to have clung to them in idea, or by the "eye of faith." His definition of faith--i.e., "the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen"--points to the Linga-Yoni mysteries, and those mysteries explain his otherwise hidden meaning of faith.
It is curious to be able to notice, in the present year of the world, how the fourfold conception of the unseen powers of the universe exists among ourselves. Throughout our churches a Trinity is worshiped, and a fourth
power deprecated: the beneficent is portrayed as three, the malignant one--Typhon of antiquity, or the Devil of modern orthodoxy--is depicted as single. In Roman Catholic countries, on the other hand, the Godhead is painted as it was in Babylon: i. e., the male triad with the female unit. In Gen. xxiii, 2, we find Arba, which signifies "giant Baal," or "Baal-Hercules;" the correct etymons appear to be Arba-el, "God is fourfold," or
There is, indeed, no single Papal church, whether chapel or cathedral, to which the name Beth-Arbel, "Fourfold God," would not apply; for all are types in which adoration is paid to the undivided trinity in unity, and the Celestial Virgin, the mother of God and man. The name has also been traced to the Hebrew ar and bel: i.e., "a hero is Bel," or, "Bel is powerful."
THE learned Higgins, an English judge, who for some years spent ten hours a day in antiquarian studies, Says that Moriah, of Isaiah and Abraham, is the Meru
of the Hindus, and the Olympus of the Greeks. Solomon built high places for Ashtoreth, Astarte, or Venus, which became mounts of Venus, mons veneris--Meru and Mount Calvary--each a slightly elevated skull-shaped mount that might be represented by a bare head. The Bible translators perpetuate the same idea in the word "calvaria." Prof. Stanley denies that "Mount Calvary" took its name from its being the place of the crucifixion of Jesus. Looking elsewhere and in earlier times for the bare calvaria, we find among Oriental women, the Mount of Venus, mons veneris, through motives of neatness or religious sentiment, deprived of all hirsute appendage.
PASSING from figures, paintings, statuary, ornaments and symbols, it is requisite to notice the religious observances, the actual practice of the faith held by the world's primal worshipers.
It would appear, or rather it does appear, that phallic worship, or religion, was, first, an instinct or passion; second, it was a privilege and luxury; third, it was a pastime or calling; fourth, it became dominating and imperative; fifth, by euphemistic transformation, it was
merged into the Hebrew cultus; and seventh, the Hebrew cultus was further modified into the Christian religion. In support of the first proposition that it was instinctive, or passion, and sexual passion at that, we have the law which ruled out those male devotees whose damaged sexual structure disqualified them for actuating their rites (Deut. xxiii, 1): "He that is wounded in the testicles, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter the congregation of the Lord." The above quotation also offers a shoulder of support to our second proposition, namely, that their religious rites were a privileged luxury. As men were inspected in regard to fitness, women were provided in view of that fitness.
In Num. xxxi, 18 and 35, we are assured, without a lisp or a twinge of horror, that thirty-two thousand Midianitish virgins were consecrated to this end. We need not go into details about the manner in which the sacrifice was made; but we must call attention to the fact that a Christian church still promulgates the same idea, in an alleged spiritual form, and that the nunneries of Christendom are vailed, perhaps decent, counterparts of those Oriental establishments where women consecrated their bodies and. themselves to fulfil the special duties of their sex, so they were taught in the name and for the glorification of their Deity.
There was a temple in Babylonia where every female had to perform once in her life a (to us) strange act of religion: namely, prostitution with a stranger. The name of it was Bit-Shagatha, or, "The Temple," the "Place of Union."
Words and history corroborate each other, or are apt to do so if cotemporaneous. Thus kadesh, or kaesh, designate
in Hebrew "a consecrated one," and history tells the unworthy tale in descriptive plainness, as will be shown in the sequel.
That the religion was dominating and imperative is determined by Deut. xvii, 12, where presumptuous refusal to listen to the priest was death to the offender. To us it is inconceivable that the indulgence of passion could be associated with religion, but so it was. Much as it is covered over by altered words and substituted expressions in the Bible--an example of which see men for male organ, Ezek. xvi, 17--it yet stands out offensively bold. The words expressive of "sanctuary," "consecrated," and "Sodomite," are in the Hebrew essentially the same. They indicate the passion of amatory devotion. It is among the Hindus of to-day as it was in Greece and Italy of classic times; and we find that "holy women" is a title given to those who devote their bodies to be used for hire, the price of which hire goes to the service of the temple.
As a general rule, we may assume that priests who make or expound the laws, which they declare to be from God, are men, and, consequently, through all time, have .thought, and do think, of the gratification of the masculine half of humanity. The ancient and modern Orientals are not exceptions. They lay it down as a momentous fact that virginity is the most precious of all the possessions of a woman, and, being so, it ought, in some way or other, to be devoted to God.
Throughout India, and also through the densely inhabited parts of Asia, and modern Turkey, there is a class of females who dedicate themselves to the service of the Deity whom they adore; and the rewards accruing from their prostitution are devoted to the service of the temple
and the priests officiating therein. With an eye to piety and pelf, the clerical officials at the Hindu shrines take effectual means for procuring none but the most fascinating women for the use of their worshipers. The same practice prevailed at Athens, Corinth, and elsewhere, where the temples of Venus were supported by troops of women, who consecrated themselves, or were dedicated by their parents, to the use of the male worshipers. In modern times, reform and improvements have been effected; but it is certain that intercourse between the sexes in sacred places is common in India at the present day. The Hebrew word zanah, which signifies "semen emittere," was the name of a woman who lived and practiced the same rite outside of the temple, from motives other than those esteemed pious. Feasts and holy days were devoted to this passion, and generally concluded with excess.
IN the Assyrian language, Shaga signifies "a feast." The nature of this feast is explained by Diodorus Siculus. He says: "Our Gala or Solar days begin with fasting as a prelude to another form of sensual enjoyment." A detailed description of one of them conveys only a proximate idea of them. The most disgraceful of the Babylonian customs is the following: "Every native woman is obliged once in her life to sit in the temple of Venus and have intercourse with a stranger. And many, disdaining to mix with the rest, being proud on account of their wealth, dome in covered carriages, and take up their station at the temple with a numerous train of servants attending them. But the far greater do thus: Many sit down in the temple of
[paragraph continues] Venus wearing a crown of cord around their heads; some are continually coming in, others are going out; passages marked out in a straight line lead in every direction through the women, along which strangers pass and make their choice. When a woman has once seated herself, she must not return home until some stranger has thrown a piece of silver into her lap, and lain with her outside of the temple. He who throws the silver must say thus: 'I beseech the Goddess Mylitta to favor thee,' Mylitta being the Assyrian name for Venus. The silver may be ever so small, for she will not reject it, inasmuch as it is unlawful for her to do so, for such silver is accounted sacred. The woman follows the first man that throws, and refuses none. When she has had intercourse, and has absolved herself from her goddess, she returns home. Those that are endowed with beauty and symmetry of shape are so-on set free, but the deformed are detained a long time from inability to satisfy the law: some wait for the space of three or four years."
A similar custom exists in some parts of Cyprus. This custom is referred to in I. Sam. ii, 22, where "the sons of Eli lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation." It is needless to say for the benefit of the captious that the temple of the Assyrians was the tabernacle of the Hebrews. In both were congregations of the Lord. In both the holy presence of their God was made manifest.
HAS long been a custom in Christendom. Without explaining the origin of this custom, it will here suffice to give an example of it in early times, as an index of its character. Says S. B. Gould ("Origin
of Religious Belief"): "The idea involved in communion is the reception of something from God. By prayer, man asks something; by purification, he makes himself meet to approach God; by communion, he receives what he desires. of Deity by union with him."
The methods adopted by different religions for accomplishing the desired union are numerous. The grossest and most repulsive is by sexual intercourse. The numerous legends and myths representing the union of Gods and women (as in Gen. vi, 2), or men and Goddesses, are reminiscences of ancient mysteries, the object of which was to effect such a union. At the summit of the temple of Belus was a chamber in which was a bed beside a figure of gold; the same was to be seen in Egyptian Thebes, says Herodotus, and every night a woman was laid in this bed, to which the God was supposed to descend. The same took place at Patara in Lycia, where a priestess was locked into the temple every night. Diodorus alludes to the tombs of the concubines of Jupiter Ammon, and Strabo says the fairest and noblest ladies were vowed to share his couch. It is easy to see how the obscene orgies celebrated during some of the festivals of the Gods rose out of this superstition. "The prince, head of Agapemone, as the impersonation of Deity, performed the sexual act with a young girl in the presence of the whole community, professedly in order to make her thereby a partaker of the divine nature."
In Casgrain's "Vie de Marie de l'Incarnation" is a frank confession of the bearing of erotic sanctimony, nearer home than the above. This Marie, a woman of intense piety and heroism, says of herself in her journal: "Going to prayer, I trembled in myself and exclaimed, 'Let us go into a solitary place, my dear love, that I may
embrace you, a mon aise (at my ease), and that, breathing my soul into you, it may be but yourself only, in the union of love. Oh, my love, when shall I embrace you? Have you no pity on me in the torments that I suffer? Alas, alas I my love, my beauty, my life! instead of healing my pain, you take pleasure in it. Come, let me embrace you, and die in your sacred arms!' . . . Then, as I was spent with fatigue, I was forced to say, 'My divine love, since you wish me to live, I pray you let me rest a little, that I may better serve you'; and I promised him that afterward I would suffer myself to consume in his chaste and divine embraces." From a similar source, we find it stated that St Christina, a virgin and abbess, believed herself to have received favors which left her no longer a virgin.
The state of society and that of the public mind evinced by such social habits may not be considered depraved: they were undeveloped. Society had not risen above the crude; the moral mind had not reached the status of chaste refinement. With so prodigal a use of virtue, immodesty was without a contrast and without a name. Therefore these customs were inspired by the same artful and self-involving spirit which inspired the Assyrian and Hindu priests to invent a special hell for childless women. A relic of the same spirit continues in modern times among Christians, where masses have been said, saints invoked, offerings presented, for the cure of physical impotence.
The above is further testimony in proof of our first proposition: that the primitive religion in this early day of adolescent manhood was purely passion consecrated and sanctified--a religion of feeling. It was a physical
heaven counterpoised by a physical hell. Promises were sensuous bliss, and punishments were bodily woe. A religion of intellect or reason, apart from corporeal touch, seems unknown to them. It was based on the dynamics of nerve.
We must notice how this sexual faith has come down to recent times, and how it constitutes the framework of certain modern observances.
SAYS Hyslop: "The hot cross-buns of Good Friday, and the dyed eggs of Pasch or Easter Sunday, figured in the Chaldean rites just as they do now. The buns known, too, by that identical name were used in the worship of the Queen of Heaven, the Goddess Easter (Ishtar or Astarte), as early as the days of Cecrops, the founder of Athens, 1,500 years before the Christian era." "One species of bread," says Bryant, "'which used to be offered to the gods, was of great antiquity, and called Boun.' Diogenes mentioned 'they were made of flour and honey.'" It appears that Jeremiah the Prophet was familiar with this lecherous worship. He says: "The children gather wood, the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead the dough to make cakes to the Queen of Heaven (Jer. vii, 18). Hyslop does not add that the "buns" offered to the Queen of Heaven, and in sacrifices to other deities, were framed in the shape of the sexual organs, but that they were so in ancient times we have abundance of evidence.
Martial distinctly speaks of such things in two epigrams, first wherein the male organ is spoken of, second wherein the female part is commemorated,. the cakes being
made of the finest flour, and kept especially for the palate of the fair one.
Captain Wilford ("Asiatic Researches," viii, p 365) says: "When the people of Syracuse were sacrificing to Goddesses, they offered cakes called mulloi, shaped like the female organ, and in some temples where the priestesses were probably ventriloquists they so far imposed on the credulous multitude who came to adore the Vulva as to make them believe that it spoke and gave oracles."
We can understand how such things were allowed in licentious Rome, but we can scarcely comprehend bow they were tolerated in Christian Europe, as, to all innocent surprise, we find they were, from the second part of the "Remains of the Worship of Priapus": that in Saintonge, in the neighborhood of La Rochelle, small cakes baked in the form of the phallus are made as offerings at Easter, carried and presented from house to house. Dulare states that in his time the festival of Palm Sunday, in the town of Saintes, was called le fete des pinnes--feast of the privy members--and that during its continuance the women and children carried in the procession a phallus made of bread, which they called a pinne, at the end of their palm branches; these pinnes were subsequently blessed by the priests, and carefully preserved by the women during the year. Palm Sunday! Palm, it is to be remembered, is an euphemism of the male organ, and it is curious to see it united with the phallus in Christendom. Dulare also says that, in some of the earlier inedited French books on cookery, receipts are given for making cakes of the salacious form in question, which are broadly named. He further tells us those cakes Symbolized the male, in Lower Limousin, and especially
at Brives, while the female emblem was adopted at Clermont, in Auvergne, and other places.
In a work entitled "The Celtic Druids," by Godfrey Higgins, occurs this strong statement "Few causes have been more powerful in producing mistakes in ancient history than the idea, hastily formed by all ages, that every monument of antiquity marked with a cross, or with any of those symbols which they conceived to be monograms of Christ, were of Christian origin. The cross is as common in India as in Egypt or Europe." The Rev. Mr. Maurice says ("Indian Antiquities"): "Let not the piety of the Catholic Christian be offended at the assertion that the cross was one of the most usual symbols of Egypt and India. The emblem of universal nature is equally honored in the Gentile and Christian world. In the cave of Elephanta in India, over the heal of the principal figure, may be seen the cross, and a little in front a huge lingham (male organ)." The last-named author describes a statue in Egypt as bearing a kind of a cross in his hand--that is to say, a lingham--which. among the Egyptians was the symbol of fertility. Upon the breast of one of the Egyptian mummies in the museum of the London University is a cross exactly in the shape of Fig. 23,
[paragraph continues] "The rabbins say that when Aaron was made high priest he was marked in the forehead by Moses with the figure X. And whenever proselytes were admitted into the religious mysteries of Eleusis they were marked with a cross." Tertullian says: "The Devil signed his soldiers with the cross in the forehead in imitation of the Christians."
FROM the cross we are naturally led to the topic of crucifixion. Many Deities have been crucified. Christ was preceded by Christna, Prometheus, Esculapius, Wittoba, and Buddha. They were all crucified Redeemers long before Jesus of Nazareth was born. They were all sons of virgins: So say mythological accounts.
In view of the prevalent ideas in relation to the cross, it is singular and more than strange that the cross is not to be seen on any ancient sculpture as an instrument of punishment. In none of the ancient gems pictured by Layard is any form of the cross except the crux ansata to be found. In the Ninevite remains, the punishment which is depicted of the vanquished is impalement. We are told by Herodotus (Book III, 159) that, after the taking of Babylon, Darius impaled about three thousand of its principal citizens, and his plan, Seneca tells us, was one carried out among the Romans. When the cross was made of two pieces of wood, there seems to have been no orthodox shape, and the victims were sometimes, tied and sometimes nailed, being usually left to perish of thirst and hunger. We learn from Juvenal that crucifixion was a punishment for slaves.
Whether the story of the crucifixion of Jesus has any better foundation than the myths of antiquity, like those
relating to Christna, Wittoba, and Prometheus, we will not discuss: but it is pertinent to our subject to speak of the idea which possessed the minds of Christian bishops that met in the third century at Nicca, and determined that the cross should be the characteristic emblem of the Catholic faith. We may admit that they regarded the emblem as a sign of the death of the Redeemer by a painful method; but we must believe that the astute bishops of Africa and the East recognized in it the emblem of fertility. Their doctrine was that all men were dead in sins, but that through Christ they received life. Shorn of palpable phallic immodesty, and of all its offensive indications, there was nothing in the symbol of the cross to offend the eye, while they were able to attach to it much that suggested certain doctrines. From it alone, as from a text, one hierarch might expatiate on the sufferings of the Savior, while another might dwell on the glories of the resurrection; one might paint the horrors of eternal death, another the glories or eternal life; one might view it as a man with arms outstretched so as to secure the whole world under his care, another as an emblem pointing two ways--one to heaven, the other to hell.
Whatever may have been its precedents, one thing seems to be perfectly certain, that its form was extremely simple, and that every modern addition, namely, the addition of the circle and the triple ornaments, is a return to ancient heathenism, a commingling of ancient tenets with modern dogmas.
Higgins (p. 70) gives an account of the crucifixion of Salivahana, Wittoba, and Buddha, who were Hindu divinities, and figured in a drawing (Ball, ii) from the famous temple of the crucified Wittoba at Tripetty. These
differ in no respect from the crucified Jesus with which we are familiar. A halo of glory shiner upon his head, on which there is a crown, serrated with sharp angler, on its upper margin. The hands are extended, the feet are slightly separated, and all are marked with stigmata--the notable nail prints. These are pictures of the imagination, instead of pictures of reality.
The resemblance between Christna and Christ is too striking not to append a short sketch of the Hindu God, and compare their likenesses.
WAS mouldy with years ere Jesus was born. He is one of the most popular of all the Hindu Deities. An immense number of legends are told of him which are not worth recording, but the following, condensed from the "Anacalypsis," of Godfrey Higgins, will repay perusal. It appears to be the legitimate fountain from which that of Christ springs.
He is represented as the son of Brahma and Maria, or as some say of Devaci, and is usually called "the Savior," or the preserver. He, being God, became incarnate in the flesh. As soon as he was born, he was saluted by a chorus of devatars, or angels. His birthplace was Mathura. He was cradled among shepherds. Soon after his birth he was carried away by night to a remote place, for fear of a tyrant, Cansa, whose destroyer it was foretold he would become) and who ordered all male children to be slain. (An episode marked in the sculptures at Elephanta; and over the head of this slaughtering figure, surrounded by supplicating mothers and murdered male infants, are the mitre, a crosier, and a cross.) By the male line he was of royal descent, though born in a dungeon,
which on his arrival he illuminated, while the face of his parents shone. He was believed to be born of the left intercostal rib of the Virgin Davaci. Christna spoke as soon as he was born and comforted his mother. He was persecuted by his brother Ram, who helped him to purify the world of monsters and demons. Christna descended into Hades and returned to Viacontha. One of his names is the Good Shepherd. An Indian prophet, Nared-Saphos, or Wisdom, visited him, consulted the stars, and pronounced him a celestial being. Christna cured a leper; a woman poured a box of ointment on his head, and he cured her of disease. He was chosen king among his fellow cowherds. He washed the feet of Brahmins. Christna had a dreadful fight with the serpent Caluga. He was sent to a tutor, whom be astonished with his learning. Christna was crucified between two thieves, went to hell, and afterward to heaven.
The story of Jesus of Nazareth is so identical with that of Christna in name, origin, office, history, incidents, and death, as to make it manifest that the latter was copied from the earlier almost entire. Some whose reverent sympathy feels hurt at the thought that the story of Christ may not be original try to maintain that Christna's is subsequent to Christ. But the following points of historic fact afford a burden of proof that puts a bar to controversy thereon. "It has been satisfactorily proved, on the authority of a passage in Adrian, that the worship of Christna was practiced in the time of Alexander the Great (330 years before Christ), at what still remains one of the most famous temples of India, the temple of Mathura, on Jumna, the Matura Deorum of Ptolemy. Further, the statue of the God Christna is to be found in the very oldest caves and temples, the inscriptions on
which are in a language used previously to the Sanskrit, and now totally unknown to all mankind. This may be seen any day among the places in the city of Seringham and at the temple at Malvalipurram."
Why were these twins, Christna and Christ, born in eras so divergent, with incidents so identical?