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The God-Idea of the Ancients or Sex in Religion by Eliza Burt Gamble

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observes that it is a masculine name for a feminine deity--a name
which is said to be a corruption of Mai, the Hindoo Queen of

In process of time, as the world became more and more
masculinized, so important did it become that the male should
occupy the more exalted place in the Deity, that even the Great
Mother of the Gods, as we have seen, is represented as male.

The androgynous or plural form of the ancient Phoenician God
Aleim, the Creator referred to in the opening chapter of Genesis,
is clearly apparent. This God, speaking to his counterpart,
Wisdom, the female energy, says: "Let us make man in our own
image, in our own likeness," and accordingly males and females
are produced. By those whose duty it has been in the past to
prove that the Deity here represented is composed only of the
masculine attributes, we are given to understand that God was
really "speaking to himself," and that in his divine cogitations
excessive modesty dictated the "polite form of speech"; he did
not, therefore, say exactly what he meant, or at least did not
mean precisely what he said. We have to bear in mind, however,
that as man had not at that time been created, if there were no
female element present, this excess of politeness on the part of
the "Lord" was wholly lost. Surely, in a matter involving such
an enormous stretch of power as the creation of man independently
of the female energy, we would scarcely expect to find the high
and mighty male potentate which was subsequently worshipped as
the Lord of the Israelites laying aside his usual "I the Lord,"
simply out of deference to the animals.

In Christian countries, during the past eighteen hundred years,
the greatest care has been exercised to conceal the fact that
sun-worship underlies all forms of religion, and under Protestant
Christianity no pains has been spared in eliminating the female
element from the god-idea; hence the ignorance which prevails at
the present time in relation to the fact that the Creator once
comprehended the forces of Nature, which by an older race were
worshipped as female.



Although the God of the most ancient people was a dual Unity, in
later ages it came to be worshipped as a Trinity. When mankind
began to speculate on the origin of the life principle, they came
to worship their Deity in its three capacities as Creator,
Preserver, and Destroyer or Regenerator, each of which was female
and male. We have observed that, according to Higgins, when this
Trinity was spoken of collectively, it was called after the
feminine plural.

By the various writers who have dealt with this subject during
the last century, much surprise has been manifested over the fact
that for untold ages the people of the earth have worshipped a
Trinity. Forster, in his Sketches of Hindoo Mythology, says:
"One circumstance which forcibly struck my attention was the
Hindoo belief of a Trinity."

Maurice, in his Indian Antiquities, observes that the idea of
three persons in the Deity was diffused amongst all the nations
of the earth, in regions as distant as Japan and Peru, that it
was memorially acknowledged throughout the whole extent of Egypt
and India, "flourishing with equal vigor amidst the snowy
mountains of Thibet, and the vast deserts of Siberia." The idea
of a Trinity is supposed to have been first elaborated on the
banks of the Indus, whence it was carried to the Greek and Latin
nations. Astrologically the triune Deity of the ancients
portrayed the processes of Nature.

This recondite doctrine as understood by the very ancient people
which originated it, involved a knowledge of Nature far too deep
to be appreciated or understood by their degenerate descendants,
except perhaps by a few philosophers and scholars who imbibed it
in a modified form from original sources in the far East.

After the establishment of the Trinity, the creative energy,
which had formerly been represented by a mother and child, came
to be figured by the mother, father, and the life derived
therefrom. Sometimes the Trinity took the form of the two
creative forces, female and male, and the Great Mother.

Whenever the two creative principles were considered separately,
there always appeared stationed over or above them, as their
Creator, an indivisible unity. This Creator was the "Beyond,"
the "most High God"--Om or Aleim. It was the Mother of the Gods
in whom were contained all the elements of the Deity. Among the
representations of the god-idea which are to be observed on the
monuments and in the temples of Egypt appear triads, each of
which is composed of a woman stationed between a male figure and
that of a child. She is depicted as the Light of the sun, or
Wisdom, while the male is manifested as the Heat of the orb of
day. She is crowned and always bears the male symbol of life--
the crux-ansata.

Later, it is observed that the worship of Light has in a measure
given place to the adoration of Heat, in other words Light is no
longer adored as essence of the Deity, Heat or Passion having
become the most important element in creative power.

After the ancient worship of the Virgin and Child had become
somewhat changed or modified so as to better accommodate itself
to the growing importance of the male, the most exalted
conception of the Deity in Egypt seems to have been that of a
trinity composed of Mout the Mother, Ammon the Father, and Chons
the Infant Life derived from the other two. Mout is identical
with Neith, but she has become the wife as well as the mother of
Ammon. Directly below this conception of the Deity is a triad
representing less exalted attributes, or lower degrees of wisdom,
under the appellations of Sate, Kneph, and the child Anouk; and
thus downward, through the varying spheres of celestial light and
life involved in their theogony are observed the divine creative
energies represented under the figures of Mother, Father, and the
Life proceeding therefrom, until, finally, when the earth is
reached, Isis, Osiris, and Horus appear as the representation of
the creative forces in human beings, and therefore as the
embodiment of the divine in the human.

The Deity invoked in all the earlier inscriptions is a triad, and
we are assured that in Babylonia, where Beltis is associated with
Belus, "no god appears without a goddess."

The supreme Deity of Assyria was Asshur, who was worshipped
sometimes as female, sometimes as male. This God doubtless
represents the dual or triple creative principle observed in all
the earlier forms of worship. Asshur had no distinct temple, but
as her position was at the head of the Pantheon, all the shrines
throughout Assyria were supposed to have been open to her

According to Bunsen, in the Sidonian Tyrian district, there were
originally three great gods, at the head of which appears
Astarte--a woman who represents pure reason or intelligence; then
follows Zeus, Demarius, and Adorus. Without doubt this triad
represents a monad Deity similar in character to the one observed
in Egypt and other countries.

In the minds of all well-informed persons, there is no longer any
doubt that in Abraham's time the Canaanites worshipped the same
gods as did the Persians and all the other nations about them--
namely, Elohim, the dual or triune creative force in Nature. As
the Sun was the source whence proceeded all light and life as
well as reproductive or generative power, it had become the
object of adoration, and as the emblem of the Deity, it was
worshipped by all the nations of the earth in its three
capacities as Creator, Preserver, and Destroyer or Regenerator
each female and male.

Melchizedek, who was a priest of the most high God, blessed
Abraham, who was a worshipper of the same Deity. On this subject
Dr. Shuckford says:

"It is evident that Abraham and his descendants worshipped not
only the true and living God, but they invoked him in the name of
the Lord, and they worshipped the Lord whose name they invoked,
so that two persons were the object of their worship, God and
this Lord: and the Scriptures have distinguished these two
persons from one another by this circumstance, that God no man
hath seen at any time nor can see but the Lord whom Abraham and
his descendants worshipped was the person who appeared to them."

We are told that when chap. xxi., verse 33, of Genesis is
correctly translated, Abraham is represented as having invoked
Jehovah, the everlasting God.

In the Hebrew name Yod-He-Vau (Jehovah), was set forth the triune
character of the Creator; in other words, this name "comprehended
the essential perfections of the great God," and was used in
their Scriptures as a "kind of summary or revelation of the
attributes of the Deity."

Although Abraham, while in Egypt, was the worshipper of idols, we
are assured that "the peculiar privilege vouchsafed to him lay in
the revelation of God's holy name, Yod-He-Vau. There is indeed
much evidence going to prove that the people represented by
Abraham understood the earlier conception of a Deity, and that
while the great universal principle whose name it was sacrilege
to pronounce was still acknowledged, there was another God (the
Lord), the same as in China, whose worship they were beginning to
adopt. "And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, If God will be with me,
and will keep me in this way that I go, and will give me bread to
eat, and raiment to put on,

So that I come again to my Father's house in peace; then shall
the Lord be my God."

He then declared that the pillar or stone which he had set up,
and which was the emblem of male procreative energy, should be
God's house.

As at the time represented by Jacob there was evidently little or
no spirituality among the Israelites, this Lord whom they
worshipped was simply a life-giver in the most material or
practical sense.

The reproductive energy in man had become deified. It had, in
other words, come to possess all the attributes of a god, or of a
powerful man, which in reality was the same thing. It is this
god personified which is represented as appearing to Abraham and
talking with him face to face. With this same god Jacob
wrestled, while the real God--the dual or triune principle, the
Jehovah or Iav, no man could behold and live.

To conceal the fact that the God of Abraham originally consisted
of a dual or triple unity, and that the Deity was identical in
significance with that of contemporary peoples, the priests have,
as usual, had recourse to a trick to deceive the ignorant or
uninitiated. In reference to this subject Godfrey Higgins says:

"In the second book of Genesis the creation is described not to
have been made by Aleim, or the Aleim, but by a God of a double
name Ieue Aleim; which the priests have translated Lord God. By
using the word Lord, their object evidently is to conceal from
their readers several difficulties which afterward arise
respecting the names of God and this word, and which show clearly
that the books of the Pentateuch are the writings of different

[39] Anacalypsis, book ii., ch, i.

Upon this subject Bishop Colenso observes:

"And it is especially to be noted that when the Elohistic
passages are all extracted and copied one after another, they
form a complete, connected narrative; from which we infer that
these must have composed the original story, and that the other
passages were afterwards inserted by another writer, who wished
to enlarge or supplement the primary record. And he seems to
have used the compound Jehovah Aleim in the first portion of his
work in order to impress upon the reader that Jehovah, of whom he
goes on to speak in the later portions, is the same Great Being
who is called simply Elohim by the older writer, and notably in
the first account of the creation."[40]

[40] Lectures on the Pentateuch and the Moabite Stone, p. 7.

We are informed by Bunsen that El, or Elohim, comprehends the
true significance of the Deity among all the Aramaic or
Canaanitish races, El representing the abstract principle taken
collectively, Elohim pertaining to the separate elements as
Creator, Preserver, and Regenerator. Each of these Canaanitish
races had inherited these ideas from their fathers, and, although
they had become grossly idolatrous, "Moses knew, and educated
Israelites remained a long time conscious, that they used them
not merely in their real but in their most ancient sense."[41]
Maurice and other writers call attention to the fact that Moses
himself uses this word Elohim with verbs and adjectives in the
plural. That the God worshipped by the more ancient peoples,
namely Aleim, or Elohim, the same who said, "Let us make man in
our image," was not the Lord adored at a later age by the Jews,
is a fact which at the present time seems to be clearly proven;
that it constituted, however, the dual or triune unity venerated
by all the nations on the globe of which we have any record,
appears to be well established.

[41] Bunsen, History of Egypt, vol. iv., p. 421.

We have seen that although the two sex-principles which underlie
Nature constituted the Creator, the ancients thought of it only
as one and indivisible. This indivisible aspect was the sacred
Iav, the Holy of Holies. When it was contemplated in its
individual aspect it was Creator, Preserver, and Destroyer, each
of which was female and male.

The difficulty of the ancients in establishing a First Cause
seems to have been exactly the same as is ours at the present
time. When we say there must have been a God who created all
things, the question at once arises, Who created God? According
to their theories, nothing could be brought forth without the
interaction of two creative principles, female and male; yet
everything, even these principles, must proceed from an
indivisible energy--an energy which, as the idea of the sex
functions became more and more clearly defined, could not be
contemplated except in its dual aspect. So soon, therefore, as
the Great First Cause was separated into its elements, a still
higher power was immediately stationed above it as its Creator.
This Creator was designated as female. It was the Mother idea
Even gods could not be produced without a mother.

In referring to the doctrines contained in the Geeta, one of the
sacred writings of the Hindoos, Faber observes:

"In the single character of Brahm, all the three offices of
Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva are united. He is at once the Creator,
the Preserver, and the Destroyer. He is the primeval
Hermaphrodite, or the Great Father and the Great Mother blended
together in one person."

The fact that a trinity in unity, representing the female and
male energies symbolized by the organs of generation, formerly
constituted the Deity throughout Asia is acknowledged by all
those who have examined either the literature or monumental
records of oriental countries. The Rev. Mr. Maurice bears
testimony to the character of Eastern religious ideas in the
following language:

"Whoever will read the Geeta with attention, will perceive in
that small tract the outlines of all the various systems of
theology in Asia. The curious and ancient doctrine of the
Creator being both male and female, mentioned on a preceding
page, to be designated in Indian temples by a very indecent
exhibition of the masculine and feminine organs of generation in
union, occurs in the following passage: 'I am the Father and
Mother of this world; I plant myself upon my own nature and
create again and again this assemblage of beings; I am generation
and dissolution, the place where all things are deposited, and
the inexhaustible seed of all Nature. I am the beginning, the
middle, and the end of all things.' "[42]

[42] Maurice, Indian Antiquities, vol. iv., p. 705.

According to Sir W. Jones, the Brahme, Vishnu, and Siva coalesce
to form the mystic Om, which means the essence of life or divine
fire. In the Bhagavat Geeta the supreme God speaks thus
concerning itself: "I am the holy one worthy to be known"; and
immediately adds: "I am the mystic [trilateral] figure Om; the
Reig, the Yagush, and the Saman Vedas." It is a unity and still
a trinity. This Om or Aum stands for the Creator, Preserver, and
Destroyer or Regenerator, and represents the threefold aspect of
the force within the sun. The doctrine maintained throughout the
Geeta is not only that the great life-force represents a trinity
in unity, but that it is both female and male. On this subject
Maurice, in his Indian Antiquities, says:

"This notion of three persons in the Deity was diffused amongst
all the nations of the earth, established at once in regions so
distant as Japan and Peru, immemorially acknowledged throughout
the whole extent of Egypt and India, and flourishing with equal
vigor amidst the snowy mountains of Thibet, and the vast deserts
of Siberia."

We have observed that the idea of a trinity as conceived by the
so-called ancients, although at all times founded on the same
conception, viz., that of the reproductive powers of Nature and
especially of mankind, differed in expression according to its
application. Although in human beings this triune creative idea
was expressed by the mother, father, and child, as set forth in
the temples and on the monuments of Egypt, when applied directly
to the sun and the planets, it appears as the Creator, Preserver,
and Regenerator or Destroyer.

Destruction, or the absence of the sun's heat, represented by
winter, was necessary to life, and therefore the Destroyer was
also the Regenerator and equally with the Creator and Preserver
constituted a beneficent factor in the god-idea. In fact as this
third element really embodied the substance of the other two, it
finally became the supreme God, little afterward being heard
about the Creator and Preserver. The Regenerator or Destroyer
was of course the sun, which in winter died away and rose again
in the spring-time as a beneficent Savior or renewer of life.
The principle involved in these processes represented Fertility,
Life, reproductive energy. As applied to mortals, it
comprehended the power to create combined with perceptive Wisdom
or Knowledge.

This idea, portrayed as it was by a mother and her child, linked
woman with the stars. It produced the "Virgin of the Sphere,"
Queen of Heaven, "Isiac Controller of the Zodiac," at the same
time that it made her the mother of all mankind.

Every year this Virgin of the Sphere as she appeared above the
horizon at the winter solstice gave birth to the sun.
Astronomically this new sun was the Regenerator, by which all
Nature was renewed. Mythologically, after the higher truths
contained in these doctrines were lost, it came to be the Savior,
the Son of the Virgin, the seed of the woman, which was to bruise
the serpent's head.

That the religion of an ancient race comprehended a knowledge of
the evolutionary processes of Nature may not be doubted. The
myths still extant, and even the oldest Assyrian inscriptions
which have been deciphered, reveal the fact that the seeds of the
visible universe were hidden in the "great deep"--that animal
creation sprang from the earth and the sea through the influence
of the sun's rays.

It is now known that the philosophy of an older race involved a
belief in the Eternity of Matter. The abstruse doctrine of
Reincarnation and the Renewal of Worlds seems to have formed the
basis of their philosophy. According to these speculations, a
portion of the earth was destroyed or resolved into its primary
elements every six hundred years, while at the end of each
Kalpia, or great Cycle of several thousand years, the entire
earth was renovated or absorbed into the two fecundating
principles of the universe. These two indivisible forces
represented by Vishnu rested in the water, or brooded on the face
of the deep. When stirred by love for each other they again
became active, and from the germs of a former world, which had
been absorbed by themselves, created again the earth and
everything upon it. In other words, "the earth sprang from the
navel of Vishnu or Brahme." According to the Buddhists of
Ceylon, the universe has perished ten different times, and each
time has been renewed by the operations of Nature, or by the
preservation of germs from a former world. In their mythology
these germs are represented by a parent and a triplicated
offspring. It is perhaps unnecessary to add that this monad
trinity is the Creator, Preserver, and Destroyer with their great
parent, the Mother of the Gods, which in process of time came to
be regarded as male. According to Wilford, Hindoo chronology
presents fourteen different periods, six of which have already
elapsed; we are in the seventh, which began with the flood. Each
of these periods is called a Manwantara, the presiding genius or
Deity of which is a Menu. At the close of each dynasty a total
destruction of the world takes place, everything being destroyed
except the ruler, or Menu, who "escapes in a boat." Each new
world is an exact counterpart of the one destroyed, and each Menu
is a representation of all preceding ones. Thus the history of
one dynasty serves for all the rest. This doctrine of a
triplicated Deity appearing at the beginning of a new creation
may be traced in nearly every country of the globe. Among the
Buddhists of China, Fo is mysteriously multiplied into three
persons in the same manner as is Fo-hi, who is evidently Noah.
Among the Hindoos is observed the triad Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva
springing from the monad Brahm or Brahme. This triad appears on
the earth at the beginning of each Manwantara in the human form
of Menu and his three sons. We are assured that among the
Tartars evident traces are found of a similar God, who is seated
on the lotus. It is also figured on a Siberian medal in the
imperial collection at St. Petersburg. The Jakuthi Tartars, who
are said to be the most numerous people of Siberia, worship a
triplicated Deity under the three denominations of Artugon and
Schugo-tangon and Tangara. Faber tells us that this Tartar God
is the same even in appellation with the Tanga-tanga of the
Peruvians, who, like other tribes of America, seem plainly to
have crossed over from the North-eastern extremity of Siberia.
Upon this subject the same writer remarks thus:

"Agreeably to the mystical notion so familiar to the Hindoos,
that the self-triplicated Great Father yet remained but one in
essence, the Peruvians supposed their Tanga-tanga to be one in
three, and three in one: and in consequence of the union of hero
worship with the astronomical and material systems of idolatry
they venerated the sun and the air, each under three images and
three names. The same opinions equally prevailed throughout the
nations which lie to the west of Hindostan. Thus the Persians
had their Ormuzd, Mithras, and Ahriman: or, as the matter was
sometimes represented, their self-triplicating Mithras. The
Syrians had their Monimus, Aziz, and Ares. The Egyptians had
their Emeph, Eicton, and Phtha. The Greeks and Romans had their
Jupiter, Neptune, and Pluto; three in number, though one in
essence, and all springing from Cronus, a fourth, yet older God.
The Canaanites had their Baal-Spalisha or self-triplicated Baal.
The Goths had their Odin, Vile, and Ve, who are described as the
three sons of Bura, the offspring of the mysterious cow, and the
Celts had their three bulls, venerated as the living symbols of
the triple Hu or Menu. To the same class we must ascribe the
triads of the Orphic and Pythagorean and Platonic schools; each
of which must again be identified with the imperial triad of the
old Chaldaic or Babylonian philosophy."[43]

[43] Faber, Pagan Idolatry, book vi., ch. ii., p. 470.

The history of the catastrophe known as the deluge, which, it is
claimed, took place either in Armenia, at Cashgar, or at some
other place in the East, is observed, in later ages, to furnish a
covering beneath which have been veiled the mythical doctrines of
the priests. Of the catastrophes which from time to time have
visited our planet, and of the belief which has come to be
entertained by ecclesiastics that the earth will be destroyed by
fire, Celsus writes:

"The belief has spread among them, from a misunderstanding of the
accounts of these occurrences, that after lengthened cycles of
time, and the returns and conjunctions of planets,
conflagrations, and floods are wont to happen, and because after
the last flood, which took place in the time of Deucalion, the
lapse of time, agreeably to the vicissitude of all things,
requires a conflagration; and this made them give utterance to
the erroneous opinion that God will descend, bringing fire like a

[44] Origen against Celsus, book iv., ch. xi.

The mythologies of all nations are largely founded upon the
"religious history" of a flood. The doctrine of a triplicated
God saved from destruction by a storm-tossed ark which rested on
some local mountain answering to Ararat, and which was filled
with the natural elements of reproduction, is found amongst the
traditions of every country of the globe. In Egypt, the
destructive agency drives the God into the ark--or into the
fish's belly, where he is obliged to remain until the flood
subsides. In other words, at the time of the destruction of the
world, the creative agency is forced within the womb of Nature,
there to remain until it again comes forth to recreate the world;
nor does the symbolism end here, for this God--the sun, or the
reproductive power within it, which every year is put to death by
the cold of winter, must for a season remain lifeless, but, at
the proper time, will come forth with healing in his wings. This
God must issue forth to life through female Nature.

The god-man, Noah, who appears under one appellation or another
in all extant mythologies, was slain, or shut up in a box, ark,
or chest in which he or his seed was preserved from the ravages
of a mighty flood, or from destruction by the calamity which had
befallen the rest of mankind. In one sense he represents a
Savior, in another sense he is the saved, for he is the seed of a
former world and is born again from a boat, a symbol which always
represents the female energy. Sometimes he is shut up in a
wooden cow, from which he issues forth to new life. Again this
storm tossed mariner is born from a cave, or the door of a rocky
cavern, within which he had been preserved from some terrible
catastrophe, caused either by water or fire.

Sir W. Jones, Faber, Higgins, and many others who have
investigated this subject are confident that the Noah of Genesis
is identical with Menu, the law-giver of India, and that both are
Adam, a man who appears with his three sons at the end of each
cycle, or six hundred years, to renovate the world. In the six
hundred and first year of Noah's life, in the first month, on the
first day of the month, the waters were dried up from the earth.
The drying of the waters, and the beginning anew just at the
close of the six hundred years, are thought to refer to the end
of the cycle of the Neros. A year of Menu or Buddha had expired
and a new dynasty or Mamwantara was to begin.

Regarding this trinity, Faber remarks:

"Brahm then at the head of the Indian triad is Menu at the head
of his three sons. But that by the first Menu we are to
understand Adam, is evident, both from the remarkable
circumstance of himself and his consort bearing the titles of
Adima and Iva, and from the no less remarkable tradition that one
of his three sons was murdered by his brother at a sacrifice.
Hence it will follow, that Brahm at the head of the Indian triad
is Adam at the head of his three sons, Cain, Abel, and Seth.
Each Menu with his triple offspring is only the reappearance of a
former Menu with his triple offspring; for, in every such
manifestation at the commencement of each Mamwantara, the Hindoo
Trimurti, or triad, becomes incarnate, by transmigrating from the
human bodies occupied during a former incarnation; Brahm or the
Unity appearing as the paternal Menu of a new age, while the
triad, Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva, is exhibited in the person of
his three sons. . . . But the ark-preserved Menu--Satyavrata
and his three sons are certainly Noah and his three sons, Shem,
Ham, and Japhet."

Hesiod teaches that, after the flood, Chaos, Night, and black
Erebus first appeared.[45] At this time, when there was no Earth,
no Heaven, and no Air, an egg floated on the face of the deep,
which, being parted, brought forth Love, or Cupid. Out of Chaos
this God created or formed all things. Now Cupid is the same as
the Greek Phanes, and Phanes is Noah, the egg being the ark or
female principle from which he was produced. The Greek God
Phanes is the same as the Egyptian Osiris, who was driven into
the ark by the "wind that blasts," or by the evil principle.

[45] The Theogony.

"As Cupid is indifferently said to have been produced from an egg
at a time when the whole world was in disorder, and from the womb
of the marine goddess Venus, the egg and the womb of that goddess
must denote the same thing. Accordingly we shall find that, on
the one hand, Venus is immediately connected with the symbolical
egg; and, on the other hand, that she is identical with Derceto
and Isis, and is declared to be that general receptacle out of
which all the hero-gods were produced. Now there can be little
doubt in what sense we are to understand this expression, when we
are told that the peculiar symbol of Isis was a ship; and when we
learn that the form assumed at the period of the deluge, by the
Indian Isi or Bhavani, who is clearly the same as the Egyptian
Isis, was the ship Argha, in which her consort Siva floated
securely on the surface of the ocean. Venus, therefore, or the
Great Mother, the parent of Cupid from whom all mankind
descended, must be the Ark: consequently, the egg, with which she
is connected, must be the Ark also. Aristophanes informs us that
the egg out of which Love was born, was produced by Night in the
bosom of Erebus. But the Goddess Night, as we learn from the
Orphic poet, was the very same person as Venus; and he celebrates
her as the parent of the Universe, and as the general mother both
of the hero-gods and of man. The egg therefore produced by Night
was produced by Venus: but Venus and the egg meant the same
thing: even that vast floating machine, which was esteemed an
epitome of the world, and from which was born that Deity who is
also literally said to have been set afloat in an ark. Sometimes
the order of production was inverted; and, instead of the egg
being produced by Night or Venus, Venus herself was fabled to
have been produced from the egg. There is a remarkable legend of
this sort which ascribes Venus and her egg to the age of Typhon
and Osiris, in other words, to the age in which Noah was
compelled by the deluge to enter into the ark."[46]

[46] Origin of Pagan Idolatry, book i., ch. iv.

The Preserver of the Persians, who is seated on a rainbow in
front of their rock temples, is Mithras, who is identical with
Noah. Sometimes this ancient mariner is represented as riding on
the back of a fish, and again as floating in a boat. The God of
Hindostan, like the classical Dionysos, was enclosed in an ark
and driven into the sea. According to the Gothic traditions as
recorded in the Eddas, there once existed a beautiful world,
which was destroyed by fire. Another was created, which, with
all its inhabitants save a giant and his three sons, who were
saved in a ship, were destroyed by water. With this triad, which
originally sprang from a mysterious cow, the new world began.
This new world, which represents the present system, will in time
be devoured by flames; but another earth will arise from the
ocean,--an earth far more beautiful than this, upon which all
kinds of grain and delicious fruits will grow without
cultivation. Veda and Vile will be there, for the conflagration
will have been powerless to destroy them. While the flames are
devouring all things, two human beings, a female and a male, will
be concealed under a hill, where they will feed upon dew, and
will propagate so abundantly that the earth will soon be peopled
with a new race of beings. During the catastrophe, the sun will
be devoured by a wolf, but before her death she will give birth
to a daughter as resplendent as herself, who will go in the same
path formerly trodden by her mother.

The doctrines of the Gothic philosophers, as they appear in the
Eddas, concerning the eternity of matter, the renewal or
succession of worlds, and reincarnation are the same as those
taught by Pythagoras, the Stoics, and other Greek schools of

Brahme or Vishnu, resting on the bottom of the sea--a goddess
who was symbolized by the self-generating lotus--was in later
ages the mysterious Cow of the Goths.

After the natural truths concealed beneath their religious
symbolism were wholly forgotten, and human nature through the
over-stimulation of the animal instincts had become corrupted,
Adam and Eve, names which doubtless for ages represented the two
fecundating principles throughout Nature, with their sons, Cain,
Abel, and Seth, comprehended the god-idea. The fact has been
observed that just six hundred years from the creation of Adam,
or at the close of the cycle, Noah appears with his three sons to
save or perpetuate the race.

It is now believed that this account of Noah and his three sons
is an allegory beneath which are concealed the religious
doctrines, or perhaps I should say, the philosophical
speculations of an older race. The God of the ancients was
identified with the life of man individually and with that of
mankind collectively. As men die each day, and as every day men
are born, this Deity is said to die and to be renewed each day;
and as he is the sun, or the incarnation of the sun, the rising
and setting of this luminary depict the constantly dying and
regenerating God of Nature, the same as do the changing seasons.
A similar idea reappears in their system of the renewal of worlds
and reincarnation.

Regarding the doctrine of the eternity of matter held by the
ancients, Origen mentions a belief of the Egyptians that the

"world or its substance was never produced, but that it has
existed from all eternity. Neither is there any such thing as
death. Those who perish about us every day are simply changed,
either they take on other forms or are removed to some other
place. God cannot be destroyed, and as all things are parts of
the Deity everything lives and has always lived, seeming death
being simply change. Remnants of these doctrines are found in
every portion of the globe; among the Mexicans of the west as
well as among the rude mountaineers of the Burman Empire."

While contemplating the philosophical speculations of an ancient
race Bailly gave expression to the belief, that a "profoundly
learned race of people existed previous to the formation of any
of our systems." The wiser among the Greek philosophers, those
who, it is believed, borrowed their philosophical doctrines from
the East, declare that "there is no production of anything which
was not before; no new substance made which did not really
pre-exist." Equally with matter was spirit indestructible. "Our
soul," says Plato, "was somewhere, before it came to exist in
this present form; whence it appears to be immortal. . . .
Who knows whether that which is demonstrated living, be not
indeed rather dying, and whether that which is styled dying be
not rather living?"

To one who has given attention to the various legends relative to
the destruction of the world by a flood, and a storm-tossed
mariner saved in an ark or boat, it is plain that they all have
the same significance, all are but different versions of the same
myth, which in an early age was used to conceal the philosophical
doctrines of an ancient people.

That the early historic nations understood little concerning the
origin and true meaning of the legends which they had inherited
from an older race is quite evident. The ignorance of the Greeks
regarding the significance of these legends is shown by the
following: When Solon, wishing to acquaint himself with the
history of the oldest times, inquired of an Egyptian priest
concerning the time of the flood, and the age of Deucalion or
Phroneous or Noah, this functionary replied:

"O Solon, Solon, you Greeks are always children, nor is there an
old man among you! Having no ancient traditions nor any
acquaintance with chronology, you are as yet in a state of
intellectual infancy. The true origin of such mutilated fables
as you possess is this. There have been and shall again be in
the course of many revolving ages, numerous destructions of the
human race; the greatest of them by fire and water, but others in
an almost endless succession of shorter intervals."[47]

[47] Quoted by Plato; also by Clement of Alexandria.

We have observed that the symbol of the universe was an egg. The
egg was also the symbol of the earth and of the ark, which meant
universal womanhood. From the mundane egg the triplicated Deity
sprang. There can be little doubt at the present time that Adam,
Noah, Menu, Osiris, and Dionysos all represent the fructifying
power of the sun. In process of time they each came to figure as
male reproductive energy, and during certain periods of the
earth's history they have each in turn been worshipped as the
Deity. That not only the ark was female, but that the god
element or reproductive principle within the ark was both female
and male, is a fact which has been lost sight of during the
historic period, or during those ages of the world in which the
attempt has been made to prove Nature motherless.

All the germs and living creatures which were within the ark, and
which were to reanimate the earth, were in pairs, females and
males; and, besides, the Dove (female), the emblem of peace, was
also present. Even Noah himself was produced from an egg, which,
as we have seen, is the symbol of Venus, or universal womanhood.
In after ages the female principle was not mentioned, but, on the
contrary, was concealed beneath convenient symbols; and as the
philosophical ideas underlying natural religion were lost or
forgotten, and mankind had become too ignorant to perceive that a
dual force, female and male which was also a Trinity, pervades
Nature, the notion came gradually to prevail that the creative
agency, which is spirit, is altogether male. Hence the
formulation of the inconceivable doctrine of a Trinity composed
of a Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.



Glimpses of antiquity as far back as human ken can reach reveal
the fact that in early ages of human society the physiological
question of sex was a theme of the utmost importance, while
various proofs are at hand showing that throughout the past the
question of the relative importance of the female and male
elements in procreation has been a fruitful source of religious
contention and strife. These struggles, which from time to time
involved the entire habitable globe, were of long duration,
subsiding only after the adherents of the one sex or the other
had gained sufficient ascendancy over the opposite party to
successfully erect its altars and compel the worship of its own
peculiar gods, which worship usually included a large share of
the temporal power. Only since the male sex has gained
sufficient influence to control not only human action, but human
thought as well, have these contentions subsided.[48]

[48] At the present time, through causes which are not difficult
to understand, the question of the relative importance of the two
sexes is again assuming a degree of importance indicative of the
changes which are taking place in human thought, and for the
reason that we are just witnessing the dawn of an intellectual
age, the problems to be solved will admit of no answers other
than those based upon a scientific foundation.

That religious wars have not been confined to more modern times,
and that among an early race the attempt to exalt the male
principle met with obstinate resistance which involved mankind in
a conflict, the violence of which has never been exceeded, are
facts which seem altogether probable. Indeed, there is much
evidence going to show that the cause of the original dispersion
of a primitive race was the contention which arose respecting
their religious faith or regarding the physiological question of
the relative importance of the sexes in the function of
reproduction; and that the general war indicated in the Puranas,
which began in India and extended over the entire habitable
globe, and which was celebrated by the poets as "the basis of
Grecian mythology," originated in this conflict over the
precedence of one or the other of the sex-principles contained in
the Deity. Although there are no records of these wars in extant
history, accounts of them are still preserved in the traditions
and religious monuments of oriental countries. In Egypt, in
India, and to a greater or less extent in other Eastern
countries, these physiological contests have been disguised under
a veil of allegory, the true significance of which it is no
longer difficult to understand. With the light which more recent
investigation has thrown upon the subject of the separation of
the original sex-elements contained in the Deity, the
significance of the following legend in the Servarasa is at once

When Parvati (Devi) was united in marriage to Mahadeva (Siva),
the divine pair had once a dispute on the comparative influence
of the sexes in producing animated beings, and each resolved by
mutual agreement to create a new race of men. The race produced
by Mahadeva were very numerous, and devoted themselves
exclusively to the worship of the male Deity, but their
intellects were dull, their bodies feeble, their limbs distorted,
and their complexions of many different hues. Parvati had at the
same time created a multitude of human beings, who adored the
female power only, and were well shaped, with sweet aspects and
fine complexions. A furious contest ensued between the two
nations, and the Lingajas, or adorers of the male principle, were
defeated in battle, but Mahadeva, enraged against the Yonigas
(the worshippers of the female element), would have destroyed
them with the fire of his eye if Parvati had not interposed and
appeased him, but he would spare them only on condition that they
should instantly leave the country with a promise to see it no
more, and from the Yoni, which they adored as the sole cause of
their existence, they were named Yavanas.

The fact has been noticed in a previous work[49] that, according
to Wilford, the Greeks were the descendants of the Yavanas of
India, and that when the Ionians emigrated they adopted the name
to distinguish themselves as adorers of the female, in opposition
to a strong sect of male worshippers which had been driven from
the mother country. We are taught by the Puranas that they
settled partly on the borders of Varaha-Dwip, or Europe, where
they became the progenitors of the Greeks; and partly in the two
Dwipas of Cusha, Asiatic and African. In the Asiatic Cusha-Dwip
they supported themselves by violence and rapine. Parvati,
however, or their tutelary goddess, Yoni, always protected them;
and at length, in the fine country which they occupied, they
became a flourishing nation.[50] Wilford relates that there is a
sect of Hindoos who, attempting to reconcile the two systems,
declare in their allegorical style that "Parvati and Mahadeva
found their concurrence essential to the perfection of their
offspring, and that Vishnu, at the request of the goddess,
effected a reconciliation between them."[51]

[49] See The Evolution of Women, p. 303.

[50] Asiatic Researches, vol. iii., pp. 125-132.

[51] Asiatic Researches, "Egypt and the Nile," vol. iii., pp.

The people who were dominant in Asia long before the rise of the
late Assyrian monarchy, are said to be those whom scriptural
writers represent as Cushim, and the Hindoos as Cushas. They
were the descendants of Cush, or Cuth, and were believed to have
been the architects of the Tower of Babel. Epiphanius, Eusebius,
and others assert that at the time of the building of this tower
there existed two rival beliefs, the one demonstrated as
Scuthism, the other as Ionism, or Hellenism, the latter of which
embodied the worship of the Great Mother, or the female element,
which was worshipped in the shape of the mystic "Iona or Dove."
The Scuths, on the other hand, believed in the pre-eminence of a
Great Father, or, perhaps I should say, in a Deity composed of a
triad containing the elements of a male parent. Upon this
subject the learned Faber remarks: "I am much mistaken if some
dissension on these points did not prevail at Babel itself; and I
think there is reason for believing that the altercation between
the rival sects aided the confusion of languages in producing the

[52] Pagan Idolatry, book vi., ch. ii.

Those who believed in the superiority of the male in the
processes of reproduction, adored the male element in the Deity,
while those who held that the female is the more important,
worshipped the female energy throughout Nature under one or
another of its symbols, sometimes as a woman with her child and
sometimes as a dove, but oftener as an ark, box, or chest.

It is evident from the sacred writings of the Hindoos that in
India, during a period of several thousand years, there existed
various sects, those who worshipped the male as the only creative
force, others who adored the female as the origin of life, and
those who paid homage to both, as alike important in the office
of reproduction.

It would seem that the fierce wars which had devastated the land
had ceased prior to the beginning of the Tower of Babel.
According to the testimony of Moses, the Lord himself declared
"Behold the people is one." This unanimity of belief, as is
plainly shown, was of short duration, for the Tower arose
"upright and defiant," not, however, as an emblem of the primeval
dual or triune God in which the female energy was predominant,
but as a symbol of male creative power. It was the type of
virility which in the subsequent history of religion was to
assume the position of the "one only and true God."

It is not improbable that idolatry began with the Tower of Babel.

Indeed it has been confidently asserted by certain writers that
the earliest idols set up as emblems of the Deity, or as
expressions of the peculiar worship of the Lingajas, were
obelisks, columns, or towers, the first of which we have any
account being the Tower of Babel, erected probably at Nipur in
Chaldea. Until a comparatively recent time, the actual
significance of this monument seems to have been little
understood. Later research, however, points to the fact that it
was a phallic device erected in opposition to a religion which
recognized the female element throughout Nature as God. The
length of time which the adherents of these two doctrines had
contended for the mastery is not known, but through the
deciphered monuments of ancient nations, by facts gathered from
their sacred writings, and by the general voice of tradition, it
has been ascertained with a considerable degree of certainty that
this great upheaval of society was the culmination of a dispute
which had long been waged between two contending powers, and
which finally resulted in a separation of the people, and in the
final success, for the time being, of the sect which refused
longer to recognize the superior importance of the female in the

At what time in the history of mankind the Tower of Babel was
erected has not been ascertained, but the great antiquity of
Chaldea is no longer questioned. Sir Henry Rawlinson, in the
Royal Geographical Journal says:

"When Chaldea was first colonized, or at any rate when the seat
of empire was first established there, the emporium of trade
seems to have been at Ur of the Chaldees, which is now 150 miles
from the sea, the Persian Gulf having retired nearly that
distance before the sediment brought down by the Euphrates and

To which Baldwin adds:

"A little reflection on the vast period of time required to
effect geological changes so great as this will enable us to see
to what a remote age in the deeps of antiquity we must go to find
the beginning of civilization in the Mesopotamian Valley."[53]

[53] Prehistoric Nations, p. 191.

Although at the time of the building of the Tower of Babel the
worship of a Deity in which the male principle was pre-eminent
had not become universal, still the facts seem to indicate that
the doctrine of male superiority which for ages had been steadily
advancing had at length gained the ascendancy over the older
religion. The new faith and worship had corrupted the old, and
through the conditions which had been imposed upon women, and the
consequent stimulation of the lower nature in man, even the
adherents of the older faith were losing sight of those higher
principles which in preceding ages they had adored as God.

We have seen that in every country upon the earth there is a
tradition recounting the ravages of a flood. Whether or not this
legend is to be traced to an actual calamity by which a large
portion of Asia was inundated, is not for a certainty known; but
the fact that there was a deluge of contention and strife,
surpassing anything perhaps which the world has ever witnessed,
seems altogether probable.

Not long after the catastrophe designated as the flood, emblems
of the Deity, representations of the male and female elements,
appear in profusion. Babylon, at which place was erected the
Tower of Belus, and Memphis, which contained the Pyramids, were
among the first cities which were built. As the tower typified
the Deity worshipped by those who claimed superiority for the
male, so the pyramids symbolized the creative agency and peculiar
qualities of the female, or of the dual Deity which was
worshipped as female.

Although the grosser elements in human nature were rapidly
assuming a more intensely aggressive attitude, and although the
higher principles involved in an earlier religion were in a
measure forgotten, it is evident that at this time humanity had
not become wholly sensualized, and that the lower propensities
and appetites had not assumed dominion over the reasoning

The Great Mother Cybele, who is represented by the Sphinx, had
doubtless been adored as a pure abstraction, her worship being
that of the universal female principle in Nature. She is
pictured as the "Eldest Daughter of the Mythologies," and as "The
Great First Cause." She represented the past and the future.
She was the source whence all that was and is had proceeded.

In its earliest representations, the Sphinx is figured with the
head of a woman and the body of a lion. By various writers it is
stated that the Sphinxes which were brought as spoils from Asia,
the very cradle of religion, were thus represented. The lion,
which symbolizes royal power and intellectual strength, is always
attached to the chariot of Cybele. The Sphinx is supposed to
typify not only Cybele, but the great androgynous God of Africa
as well. However, as Cybele and Muth portrayed the same idea,
namely, female power and wisdom, we are not surprised that they
should have been worshipped under the same emblem. Neither is it
remarkable, when we recall the fact that the female was supposed
to comprehend both sexes, that in certain instances a beard
appears as an accompanying feature of the Sphinx. We are told
that the fourth avatar of Vishnu was a Sphinx, but a further
search into the history of this Deity reveals the fact that her
ninth avatar is Brahm (masculine). The female principle has at
length succumbed to the predominance of male power, and Vishnu
herself has become transformed into a male God.

Although the rites connected with the worship of Cybele were
phallic they were absolutely pure. In an allusion to this
worship, Hargrave Jennings admits that the "spirituality to which
women in that age of the world were observed to be more liable
than men was peculiarly adverse to all sensual indulgence, and
especially that of the sexes."

Although the creative principle was adored under its
representatives, the Yoni and the Lingham, still the principal
object seems to have been, when administering the rites
pertaining to the worship of Cybele, to ignore sex and the usual
sex distinctions; hence we find that, in order to assume an
androgynous appearance, the priestesses of this Goddess
officiated in the costumes of males, while priests appeared in
the dress peculiar to females. However, that the sensuous
element was to a certain extent already assuming dominion over
the higher nature, and that priests were regarded as being
incapable of self-control, is observed in the fact that in the
later ages of female worship one of the principal requirements of
a priest of Cybele was castration.

It is the opinion of Grote that the story which appears in the
Hesiodic Theogony, of the castration of Saturn and Uranus by
their sons with sickles forged by the mother, was borrowed from
the Phrygians, or from the worship of the Great Mother.

In India, the strictest chastity was prescribed to the priests of
Siva, a God which was worshipped as the Destroyer or Regenerator,
and which in its earlier conception was the same as the Great
Mother Cybele. These priests were frequently obliged to
officiate in a nude state, and during the ceremony should it
appear that the symbols with which they came in contact had
appealed to other than their highest emotions, they were
immediately stoned by the people.[54]

[54] Sonnerat, Voyage aux Indes, i., 311.

The identity of the religions of India and Egypt has been noted
in an earlier portion of this work. Wilford, in his
dissertations upon Egypt and the Nile, says that in a
conversation which he had with some learned Brahmins, upon
describing to them the form and peculiarities of the Great
Pyramid, they told him that "it was a temple appropriated to the
worship of Padma Devi." The true Coptic name of these edifices
is Pire Honc, which signifies a sunbeam. Padma Devi means the
lotus, or the Deity of generation.

It is thought by many writers that these gigantic structures were
erected by the Cushite conquerors of Egypt, who invaded and
civilized the country, as emblems of the female Deity whom they
worshipped. Certainly the magnitude of these monuments and the
ingenuity displayed in their construction indicate the
intelligence of their builders and the exalted character of the
Deity adored. The Great Pyramid is in the form of a square, each
side of whose base is seven hundred and fifty-five feet, and
covers an area of nearly fourteen acres. An able writer in
describing the pyramids says that the first thing which impresses
one is the uniform precision and systematic design apparent in
their architecture. They all have their sides accurately adapted
to the four cardinal points.

"In six of them which have been opened, the principal passage
preserves the same inclination of 26 degrees to the horizon,
being directed toward the polar star. . . . Their obliquity
being so adjusted as to make the north side coincide with the
obliquity of the sun's rays at the summer's solstice, has,
combined with the former particulars, led some to suppose they
were solely intended for astronomical uses; and certainly, if not
altogether true, it bespeaks, at all events, an intimate
acquaintance with astronomical rules, as well as a due regard to
the principles of geometry. Others have fancied them intended
for sepulchres; and as the Egyptians, taught by their ancient
Chaldean victors, connected astronomy with their funereal and
religious ceremonies, they seem in this to be not far astray, if
we but extend the application to their sacred bulls and other
animals, and not merely to their kings, as Herodotus would have
us suppose."[55]

[55] The Round Towers of Ireland, p. 159.

According to the testimony of Inman, the pyramid is an emblem of
the Trinity--three in one. The triangle typifies the flame of
sacred fire emerging from the holy lamp. With its base upwards it
typifies the Delta, or the door through which all come into the
world. With its apex uppermost, it is an emblem of the phallic
triad. The union of these triangles typifies the male and female
principles uniting with each other, thus producing a new figure,
a star, while each retains its own identity.[56]

[56] Ancient Faiths, vol. i., p. 145.

Thus the primary significance of the pyramid was religious, and
in its peculiar architectural construction was manifested the
prevailing conception of the Deity worshipped; namely, the
fructifying energies in the sun. We are informed that "all
nations have at one time or another passed through violent stages
of pyrolatry, a word which reminds us that fire and phallic cult
flourished around the pyramids. . . . Every town in Greece
had a Pyrtano."[57]

[57] Forlong, Rivers of Life, or Faiths of Man in All Lands, vol.
i., p. 325.

As not alone the sun but the stars also had come to be venerated
as agencies in reproduction, the worship of these objects was, as
we have seen, closely interwoven with that of the generative
processes throughout Nature. The attempt to solve the great
problem of the origin of life on the earth led these people to
contemplate with the profoundest reverence all the visible
objects which were believed to affect human destiny. Hence both
the pyramid and the tower served a double purpose, first, as
emblems of the Deity worshipped, and, second, as monuments for
the study of the heavenly bodies with which their religious ideas
were so intimately connected.

While comparing the early emblems which prefigure the primitive
elements in the god-idea, Hargrave Jennings observes:

"In the conveyance of certain ideas to those who contemplate it,
the pyramid boasts of prouder significance, and impresses with a
hint of still more impenetrable mystery. We seem to gather dim
supernatural ideas of the mighty Mother of Nature . . . that
almost two-sexed entity, without a name--She of the Veil which is
never to be lifted, perhaps not even by the angels, for their
knowledge is limited. In short, this tremendous abstraction,
Cybele, Ideae, Mater, Isiac controller of the Zodiacs, whatever
she may be, has her representative in the half-buried Sphinx even
to our own day, watching the stars although nearly swallowed up
in the engulphing sands."[58]

[58] Phallicism, p. 25.

From the time when the two religious elements began to separate
in the minds of the people, the prophets, seers, and priestesses
of the old religion, those who continued to worship the Virgin
and Child, had prophesied that a mortal woman, a virgin, would,
independently of the male principle, bring forth a child, the
fulfilment of which prophecy would vindicate the ancient faith
and forever settle the dispute relative to the superiority of the
female in the office of reproduction. Thus would the woman
"bruise the serpent's head." In process of time not only
Yonigas, but Lingajas as well, came to accept the doctrine of the
incarnation of the sun in the bodies of earthly virgins. By
Lingaites, however, it was the seed of the woman and not the
woman herself who was to conquer evil. Finally, with the
increasing importance of the male in human society, it is
observed that a reconciliation has been effected between the
female worshippers and those of the male. Athene herself has
acquiesced in the doctrine of male superiority.

Thalat, the great Chaldean Deity, who presided over Chaos prior
to the existence of organized matter, is finally transformed into
a male God. The Hindoo Vishnu, who as she slept on the bottom of
the sea brought forth all creation, has changed her sex. Brahm,
the Creator, is male, and appears as a triplicated Deity in the
form of three sons within whom is contained the essence of a
Great Father, the female creative principle being closely veiled.

Hence we see that the God of the ancients, the universal dual
force which resides in the sun and which creates all things, is
no longer worshipped under the figure of a mother and her child.
Although the female principle is still a necessary factor in the
creative processes, and although it is capable of producing gods,
the mother element possesses none of the essentials which
constitute a Deity. In other words, woman is not a Creator.
From the father is derived the soul of the child, while from the
mother, or from matter, the body is formed. Hence the prevalence
at a certain stage of human history of divine fathers and earthly
mothers; for instance, Alexander of Macedon, Julius Caesar, and
later the mythical Christ who superseded Jesus, the Judean
philosopher and teacher of mankind.

Henceforth, caves, wells, cows, boxes and chests, arks, etc.,
stand for or symbolize the female power. We are given to
understand, however, that for ages these symbols were as holy as
the God himself, and among many peoples even more revered and

We have seen that the ancients knew that matter and force were
alike indestructible. According to their doctrine all Nature
proceeded from the sun. Hence the power back of the sun, which
they worshipped as the Destroyer or Regenerator, or, in other
words, as the mother of the sun, was the Great Aum or Om, the
Aleim or Elohim, who was the indivisible God. The creative
agency which proceeded from the sun was both male and female, yet
one in essence. Later, the male appeared as spirit, the female
as matter. Spirit was something above and independent of Nature.

It had indeed created matter from nothing. The fact will be
remembered that man claimed supremacy over woman on the ground
that the male is spirit, while the female is only matter; in
other words, that she was simply a covering for the soul, which
is divine.

Thus was the god-idea divorced from Nature, and a masculine
principle, outside and independent of matter, set up as a
personal potentate or ruler over the universe.

The logic by which the great female principle in the Deity has
been eliminated, and the subterfuges which have been and still
are employed to construct and sustain a Creator who of himself is
powerless to create, is as amusing as it is suggestive, and
forcibly recalls to mind la couvade, in which, among certain
tribes, the father, assuming all the duties of procreation, goes
to bed when a child is born.[59]

[59] The Evolution of Woman, p. 127.

All mythologies prove conclusively that ages elapsed before human
beings were rash enough, or sufficiently blinded by falsehood and
superstition, to attempt to construct a creative force unaided by
the female principle. Just here it may not be out of place to
refer to the fact that in the attempt to divorce God from Nature
have arisen all the superstitions and senseless religious
theories with which, since the earliest ages of metaphysical
speculation, the human mind has been crowded.

To this separation of the two original elements in the Deity, and
the consequent exaltation of one of the factors in the creative
processes, is to be traced the beginning of our present false,
unnatural, and unphilosophical masculine system of religion--a
system under which a father appears as the sole parent of the

The fact is tolerably well understood that mysticism and the
accumulation of superstitious ideas are the result of the
over-stimulation of the lower animal instincts. When the
agencies which had hitherto held the lower nature in check became
inoperative--when man began to regard himself as a Creator and
therefore as the superior of woman--he had reached a point at
which he was largely controlled by supernatural or mystical

The fact is observed that in course of time the governmental
powers are no longer in the hands of the people; the masses have
become enslaved. Their rulers are priests--deified tyrants who
are unable to maintain their authority except through the
ignorance and credulity of the masses. Hence one is not
surprised to find that the change which took place at a certain
stage of human growth in respect to the manner of reckoning
descent was instigated and enforced by religion. Apollo had
declared that woman is but the nurse to her own offspring.
Neither is it remarkable at this stage in the human career, as
women had lost their position as heads of families, and as they
were no longer recognized as of kin to their children, that man
should have attempted to lessen the importance of the female
element in the god-idea.

Wherever in the history of the human race we observe a change in
the relations of the sexes involving greater or more oppressive
restrictions on the natural rights of women, such change, whether
it assume a legal, social, or religious form, will, if traced to
its source, always be found deeply rooted in the wiles of
priestcraft. Since the decay of the earliest form of religion,
namely, Nature-worship, the gods have never been found ranged on
the side of women.

Later investigations are proving that the primitive idea of a
Deity had its foundation in actual physical facts and
experiences; and, as the maternal principle constituted the most
important as well as the most obvious of the facts which entered
into the conception of a Creator, and as it was the only natural
bond capable of binding human society together, so long as reason
was not wholly clouded by superstition and warped by sensuality,
it could not be eliminated. In other words, a Creator in which
the more essential element of creative force was wanting, was
contrary to all human experience and observation. Indeed nothing
could be plainer than that the deified male principle could of
itself create nothing, and that it was dependent for its very
existence on the female element.

By this attempt to construct a masculine Deity, absurdities were
presented to the human judgment and understanding which for ages
could not be overcome, and by it contradictions were necessitated
which could not be reconciled with human reason and with the
ideas of Nature which had hitherto been held by mankind. It was
not, therefore, until reason had been suspended in all matters
pertaining to religion, and blind faith in the machinations of
priestcraft had been established, that a male God was set up as
the sole Creator of the universe.

When women, who had become the legitimate plunder not only of
individuals but of bands of warriors whose avowed object was the
capture of women for wives, had degenerated into mere tools or
instruments for the gratification and pleasure of men, Perceptive
Wisdom or Light, and Maternal Affection the Preserver of the
race, gradually became eliminated from the god-idea of mankind.
Passion became God. It was the Creator in the narrowest and most
restricted sense.

Although in an age of pure Nature-worship the ideas connected
with reproduction, like those related to all other natural
functions, were wholly unconnected with impurity either of
thought or deed, still when an age arrived in which all checks to
human passion had been withdrawn, and the lower propensities had
gained dominion over the higher faculties, the influence of
fertility or passion-worship on human development or growth may
in a degree be imagined.

The fact must be borne in mind that curing the later ages of
passion-worship the creative processes and the reproductive
organs were deified, not as an expression or symbol of the
operations of Nature, but as a means to the stimulation of the
lower animal instincts in man.

With religion bestialized and its management regulated wholly
with an idea to the gratification of man's sensuous desires,
religious temples, under the supervision of the priesthood,
became brothels, in which were openly practiced as part and
parcel of religious rites and ceremonies the most wanton
profligacy and the most shameless self-abandonment. The worship
of Aphrodite or Venus, and also that of Bacchus, originally
consisted in homage paid to the reproductive principles contained
in the earth, water, and sun, but, as is well known, this pure
and beautiful worship, in later times, and especially after it
was carried to Greece, became synonymous with the grossest
practices and the most lawless disregard of human decency.

With the light which in these later ages science and ethnological
research are throwing upon the physiological and religious
disputes of the ancients, the correctness of the primitive
doctrines elaborated under purer conditions at an age when human
beings lived nearer to Nature is being proved--namely, that
matter like spirit is eternal and indestructible, and therefore
that the one is as difficult of comprehension as the other, and
that Nature, instead of being separated from spirit, is filled
with it and can not be divorced from it; also that the female is
the original organic unit of creation, without which nothing is
or can be created.



The profound doctrines of abstractions or emanations; of the
absorption of the individual soul into the divine ether or
essence; of the renewal of worlds and reincarnation, were
doubtless elaborated after the separation, in the human mind, of
Spirit from matter, but before mankind had lost the power to
reason abstractly.

Although Pythagoras understood and believed these doctrines, he
did not, as is well known, receive them from his degenerate
countrymen, but, on the contrary, imbibed them from private
sources among the orientals, where fragments of their remarkable
learning were still extant. He said that religion consists in
knowing the truth and doing good, and his ideas show the grandeur
and beauty of the earlier conception of a Deity. He declared
that there is only one God who is not, "as some are apt to
imagine, seated above the world, beyond the orb of the universe,"
but that this great power is diffused throughout Nature. It is
"the reason, the life, and the motion of all things."

Plato believed that human beings are possessed of two souls, the
one mortal, which perishes with the body, the other immortal,
which continues to exist either in a state of happiness or
misery; that the righteous soul, freed from the limitations of
matter, returns at death to the source whence it came, and that
the wicked, after having been detained for a while in a place
prepared for their reception, are sent back to earth to reanimate
other bodies.

Aristotle held the opinion that the souls of human beings are
sparks from the divine flame, while Zeno, the founder of the
Stoic philosophy, taught that spirit acting upon matter produced
the elements and the earth. There is plenty of evidence going to
show that the early Fathers in the Christian church believed in
the doctrines of reincarnation and the renewal of worlds.
Neither is there any doubt but that this philosophy came from the
East, where it originated. It is thought that the ancient
philosophers who elaborated these doctrines were unable to
account for the existence of evil without a belief in the
immortality of the soul. Spirit was eternal, as was also matter.

A soul, upon leaving the body, in course of time found its way
back to earth, surrounded by conditions suited to its stage of
growth. Here it must reap all the consequences of its former
life. It must also during its stay on earth make the conditions
for its next appearance upon an earthly plane. So soon as
through a succession of births and deaths it had perfected
itself, it entered into a state of Nirvana. It was absorbed into
the great Universal Soul. Nothing is ever lost.

"Many a house of life
Hath held me--seeking ever Him who wrought
These prisons of the senses, sorrow fraught;
Sore was my ceaseless strife!
But now,
Thou builder of this tabernacle--Thou!
I know Thee.
Never shalt Thou build again
These walls of pain,
Nor raise the roof-tree of deceits, nor lay
Fresh rafters on the clay;
Broken Thy house is, and the ridge-pole split!
Delusion fashioned it!
Safe pass I thence--deliverance to obtain."[60]

[60] Edwin Arnold, The light of Asia.

Regarding the opinions of the ancients on the subject of the
eternity of matter, Higgins, in his learned work on Celtic
Druids, says:

"The eternity of matter is a well known tenet of the
Pythagoreans, and whether right or wrong there can be no doubt
that it was the doctrine of the oriental school, whence
Pythagoras drew his learning. It was a principle taken or
mistaken from, or found amongst, the debris of that mighty mass
of learning and science of a former period, of which, on looking
back as far as human ken can reach, the most learned men have
thought that they could see a faint glimmering. Indeed, I think
I may say something more than a faint glimmering. For all the
really valuable moral and philosophical doctrines we possess,
Dutens has shown to have existed there."

From what is known relative to the speculations of an ancient
race, the fact is observed that creation was but a re-formation
of matter. Wisdom, or Minerva, formed the earth and the planets;
she did not create the heavens and the earth, as did the later
Jewish God.

Of the seven principles of the universe, matter was the first,
and of the seven principles of man, the physical body was the
earliest. Through evolutionary processes, or through cyclic
periods involving millions of years, mind was developed, and in
course of time spirit was finally manifested.

Mai, the Mother of Gotama Buddha, was simply matter, or illusion,
from which its higher manifestation, mind or spirit, was
emerging. She was also the mother of Mercury. A clearer
knowledge of the philosophical doctrines which were elaborated at
a time when Nature-worship was beginning to decay, reveals the
fact that the god-idea comprehended a profound knowledge of
Nature and her laws; that while this people did not pretend to
account for the existence of matter, they recognized a force
operating through it whose laws were unchanged and unchanging.

With these facts relative to the intelligence of an older race
before us, the question naturally arises: What was the degree of
civilization attained at a time when the Deity worshipped was an
abstract principle involving the actual creative processes
throughout Nature? and, notwithstanding our prejudices, we are
constrained to acknowledge that these earlier conceptions are
scarcely compatible with the barbarism which we have been taught
to regard as the condition of all the peoples which existed prior
to the first Greek Olympiad. On the contrary, the origin of the
philosophical opinions entertained by the most ancient oriental
philosophers, and which must have arisen out of a profound
knowledge or appreciation of Nature and her operations, point to
a race far superior to any of those peoples which appear in early
historic times. Regarding these opinions, Godfrey Higgins

"From their philosophical truth and universal reception I am
strongly inclined to refer them to the authors of the Neros, or
to that enlightened race, supposed by Bailly to have formerly
existed, and to have been saved from a great catastrophe on the
Himalaya Mountains. This is confirmed by an observation which
the reader will make in the sequel, that these doctrines have
been, like all the other doctrines of antiquity, gradually
corrupted--incarnated, if I may be permitted to compose a word
for the occasion."

Of this cycle, Bailly says: "No person could have invented the
Neros who had not arrived at much greater perfection in astronomy
than we know was the state of the most ancient Assyrians,
Egyptians, and Greeks."

Toward the close of the eighteenth century the celebrated
astronomer, Bailly, published a work entitled The History of
Ancient Astronomy, in which he endeavored to prove that a nation
possessed of profound wisdom and great genius, and of an
antiquity far superior to the Hindoos or Egyptians, "inhabited
the country to the north of India, or about fifty degrees north
latitude." This writer has shown that "the most celebrated
astronomical observations and inventions, from their peculiar
character, could have taken place only in these latitudes, and
that arts and improvements gradually travelled thence to the

A colony of Brahmins settled near the Imans, and in Northern
Thibet, where in ancient times they established celebrated
colleges, particularly at Nagraent and Cashmere. In these
institutions the treasures of Sanskrit literature were supposed
to be deposited. The Rev. Mr. Maurice was informed that an
immemorial tradition prevailed at Benares that all the learning
of India came from a country situated in forty degrees of
northern latitude. Other writers are of the opinion that
civilization proceeded from Arabia; that the old Cushite race
carried commerce, letters, and laws to all the nations of the
East. Which of these theories is true, if either, may not with
certainty be proved at present; yet that in the far distant past
a race of people existed whose achievements exceeded those of any
of the historic nations may not be doubted.

That the length of the year was calculated with greater exactness
by an ancient and forgotten people than it was by early historic
nations is proved by the cycle of the Neros. This cycle, which
was formed of 7.421 lunar revolutions of 29 days, 12 hours, 44
minutes, and 3 seconds, or 219,146 days and a half, was equal to
600 solar years of 365 days, 5 hours, 51 minutes, and 36 seconds,
which time varies less than three minutes from the present
observations of the year's length. The length of the year as
calculated by the Egyptians and other early historic nations was
360 days, which fact would seem to indicate that a science of
astronomy had been developed in an earlier age which by the most
ancient peoples of whom we have any historic records has been
lost or forgotten. It has been said that if this cycle of the
Neros "were correct to the second, if on the first of January at
noon a new moon took place, it would take place again in exactly
600 years at the same moment of the day, and under all the same

[61] Godfrey Higgins, Celtic Druids, ch. ii., sec. 14.

The Varaha Calpa has the famous cycle of 4,320,000,000 years for
its duration. This system makes the Cali Yug begin 3098 years
B.C. A dodecan consisted of 5 days, and 72 dodecans formed a
natural year of 360 days. According to the earlier calculations,
360 solar diurnal revolutions constituted a natural year. The
doctrine of the ancients concerning these cycles is thus set
forth by Godfrey Higgins:

"The sun, or rather that higher principle of which the sun was
the emblem or the shekinah, was considered to be incarnated every
six hundred years. Whilst the sun was in Taurus, the different
incarnations, under whatever names they might go, were all
considered but as incarnations of Buddha or Taurus. When he got
into Aries, they were in like manner considered but as
incarnations of Cristna or Aries, and even Buddha and Cristna
were originally considered the same, and had a thousand names in
common, constantly repeated in their litanies--a striking proof
of identity of origin. Of these Zodiacal divisions the Hindoos
formed another period, which consisted of ten ages or Calpas or
Yugs, which they considered the duration of the world, at the end
of which a general renovation of all things would take place.
They also reckoned ten Neroses to form a period, each of them
keeping a certain relative location to the other, and together to
form a cycle. To effect this they doubled the precessional
period for one sign-- viz: 2160 years--thus making 4320, which
was a tenth of 43,200, a year of the sun, analogous to the 360
natural days, and produced in the same manner, by multiplying the
day of 600 by the dodecans 72 = 43,200. They then formed another
great year of 432,000 by again multiplying it by 10, which they
called a Cali Yug, which was measurable both by the number 2160,
the years the equinox preceded in a sign, and by the number 600.
They then had the following scheme:

A Cali Yug, or 600 (or a Neros) 432,000
A Dwapar, or Duo-par Age. . . .864,000
A Treta, or tree-par Age. . . 1,296,000
A Satya, or Satis Age . . . .1,728,000

altogether 10 Ages, making a Maha Yug or Great Age. These were
all equimultiples of the Cycle of the Neros 600, and of 2160, the
twelfth part of the equinoctial precessional Cycle, and in all
formed ten ages of 432,000 years each."[62]

[62] Anacalypsis, vol. i., p. 232.

The two great religious festivals of the ancients occurred the
one in the spring, at Easter, when all Nature was renewed, the
other in the autumn, after the earth had yielded her bounties and
the fruits were garnered in. It was at these gatherings that the
Great Mother Earth received the devout adoration of all her

It is supposed that the Neros, or cycle of 600, is closely
connected with this worship, and that it was invented to regulate
the season for these festivals. In process of time it was
discovered that this cycle no longer answered, that the festival
which had originally fallen on the first of May now occurred on
the first of April. This, we are told,

"led ultimately to the discovery that the equinox preceded about
2160 years in each sign or 25,920 years in the 12 signs, and this
induced them to try if they could not form a cycle of the two.
On examination, they found that the 600 would not commensurate
the 2160 years in a sign, or any number of sums of 2160 less than
ten, but that it would with ten, or that in ten times 2160, or in
21,600 years, the two cycles would agree; yet this artificial
cycle would not be enough to include the cycle of 25,920. They,
therefore, took two of the periods of 21,600, or 43,200; and,
multiplying both by ten--viz: 600 X 10 = 6000, and 43,200 X 10 =
432,000--they formed a period with which the 600-year period and
the 6000-year period would terminate and form a cycle. Every
432,000 years the three periods would commence anew; thus the
three formed a year or cycle, 72 times 6000 making 432,000, and
720 times 600 making 432,000."[63]

[63] Higgins, Anacalypsis, p. 235.

To form a great year, which would include all the cyclical
motions of the sun and moon, and perhaps of the planets, they
multiplied 432,000 by ten; thus they had ten periods answering to
ten signs. Concerning these cycles Godfrey Higgins observes:

"Persons of narrow minds will be astonished at such monstrous
cycles; but it is very certain that no period could properly be
called the great year unless it embraced in its cycle every
periodical movement or apparent aberration. But their vulgar
wonder will perhaps cease when they are told that La Place has
proved that, if the periodical aberrations of the moon be
correctly calculated, the great year must be extended to a
greater length even than 4,320,000 years of the Maha Yug of the
Hindoos, and certainly no period can be called a year of our
planetary system which does not take in all the periodical
motions of the planetary bodies."

It is thought that as soon as these ancient astronomers perceived
that the equinoxes preceded, they would at once attempt to
determine the rate of precession in a given time; the precession,
however, in one year was so small that they were obliged to
extend their observations over immense periods. Jones informs us
that the Hindoos first supposed that the precession took place at
the rate of 60 years in a degree, or 1800 in a Zodiacal sign, and
of 21,600 in a revolution of the entire circle. They afterwards
came to think that the precession was at the rate of 60 years and
a fraction of a year, and thus that the precession for a sign was
in 1824 years, and for the circle in 21,888 years. Subsequently
they discovered, or thought they had discovered, the Soli-Lunar
period of 608 years, hence they attempted to make the two go
together. Both, however, proved to be erroneous.

In referring to the fact that among the ancient Romans existed
the story of the twelve vultures and the twelve ages of 120 years
each, Higgins remarks:

"This arose from the following cause: They came from the East
before the supposition that the precession took place a degree in
about 60 years, and 1824 years in a sign had been discovered to
be erroneous; and as they supposed the Neros made a correct cycle
in 608 years, and believed the precessional cycle to be completed
in 21,888, they of course made their ages into twelve. As both
numbers were erroneous, they would not long answer their intended
purpose, and their meaning was soon lost, though the sacred
periods of twelve ages and of 608 remained."

According to Hipparchus and Ptolemy, the equinoxes preceded at
the rate of a degree in 100 years, or 36,000 hundred years in 360
degrees. This constituted a great year, at the end of which the
regeneration of all things takes place. This is thought to be a
remnant of the most ancient Hindoo speculations, and not the
result of observation among the Greeks. Some time after the
arrival of the sun in Aries,

"at the vernal equinox, the Indians probably discovered their
mistake, in giving about 60 years to a degree; that they ought to
give 50" to a year, about 72 years to a degree, and about 2160
years to a sign; and that the Luni-Solar cycle, called the Neros,
did not require 608 years, but 600 years only, to complete its
period. Hence arose the more perfect Neros."

It is thought by various writers that the knowledge of the
ancient Hindoos regarding the movements of the sun and moon in
their cycles of nineteen and six hundred years--the Metonic
cycle, and the Neros--proves that long before the birth of
Hipparchus the length of the year was known with a degree of
exactitude which that astronomer had not the means of
determining. It is positively asserted by astronomers that at
least twelve hundred years were required, "during which time the
observations must have been taken with the greatest care and
regularly recorded," to arrive at the knowledge necessary for the
invention of the Neros, and that such observations would have
been impossible without the aid of the telescope.

On the subject of the great learning of an ancient race, Sir W.
Drummond says:

"The fact, however, is certain, that at some remote period there
were mathematicians and astronomers who knew that the sun is in
the centre of the planetary system, and that the earth, itself a
planet, revolves round the central fire;--who calculated, or like
ourselves attempted to calculate, the return of comets, and who
knew that these bodies move in elliptic orbits, immensely
elongated, having the sun in one of their foci;--who indicated
the number of the solar years contained in the great cycle, by
multiplying a period (variously called in the Zend, the Sanscrit,
and the Chinese ven, van, and phen) of 180 years by another
period of 144 years;--who reckoned the sun's distance from the
earth at 800,000,000 of Olympic stadia; and who must, therefore,
have taken the parallax of that luminary by a method, not only
much more perfect than that said to be invented by Hipparchus,
but little inferior in exactness to that now in use among the
moderns;--who could scarcely have made a mere guess when they
fixed the moon's distance from its primary planet at fifty-nine
semi-diameters of the earth;--who had measured the circumference
of our globe with so much exactness that their calculation only
differed by a few feet from that made by our modern
geometricians; --who held that the moon and the other planets
were worlds like our own, and that the moon was diversified by
mountains and valleys and seas;--who asserted that there was yet
a planet which revolved round the sun, beyond the orbit of
Saturn;--who reckoned the planets to be sixteen in number; --and
who reckoned the length of the tropical year within three minutes
of the true time; nor, indeed, were they wrong at all, if a
tradition mentioned by Plutarch be correct."[64]

[64] Drummond, On the Zodiacs, p. 36.

Bailly, Sir W. Jones, Higgins, and Ledwich, as well as many
modern writers, agree in the conclusion that the Indians, the
Egyptians, the Assyrians, and the Chinese were simply the
depositaries, not the inventors, of science. The spirit of
inquiry which in later times is directing attention to the almost
buried past is revealing the fact that not merely the germs
whence our present civilization has been developed descended to
us from the dim ages of antiquity, but that a great number of the
actual benefits which go to make up our present state of material
progress have come to us from prehistoric times. The art of
writing, of navigation (including the use of the compass), the
working of metals, astronomy, the telescope, gunpowder,
mathematics, democracy, building, weaving, dyeing, and many of
the appliances of civilized life, have been appropriated by later
ages with no acknowledgment of the source whence they were
derived. When Pythagoras exhibited to the Greeks some beautiful
specimens of ancient architecture which he had brought from Egypt
and Babylon, they simply claimed them as their own, giving no
credit to the people who originated them; and subsequent ages,
copying their example, have refused to acknowledge that anything
of value had been achieved prior to the first Greek Olympiad.

When Philip of Macedon opened the gold mines of Thrace, a country
in which it will be remembered the worship of the Great Mother
Cybele was indigenous, he found that they had been previously
worked "at great expense and with great ingenuity by a people
well versed in mechanics, of whom no monuments whatever are

The decorations on the breasts of some of the oldest mummies show
that the early Egyptians understood the art of making glass. It
is now known that the lens as a magnifying instrument was in use
among them. Attention has been drawn to the fact that the
astronomical observations of the ancients would have been
impossible without the aid of the telescope. Diodorus Siculus
says there was an island west of the Celtae in which the Druids
brought the sun and moon near them. An instrument has recently
been found in the sands of the Nile, the construction of which
shows plainly that 6000 years ago the Egyptians were acquainted
with our modern ideas of the science of astronomy.

William Huntington, who has travelled widely in India, Borneo,
the Malay Peninsula, and Egypt, says:

"I think, on the whole, the most interesting experience I ever
had was in an ancient city on the Nile in Egypt. . . . When I
was there a year ago, and men were digging among the ruined
temples, some curious things were brought to light, and these I
regard as the strangest things seen in all my wanderings. In an
old tomb was found a curious iron and glass object, which on
investigation proved to be a photographic camera. It was not
such a camera as is used now, or has been since our photography
was invented, but something analogous to it, showing that the art
which we thought we had discovered was really known 6000 years

The same writer states that a plow constructed on the modern plan
was also found. "It was not of steel but of iron, and it had the
same shape, the same form of point and bend of mold board as we
have now."

It is reported that the dark continent possesses means of
communication entirely unknown to Europe. Upon this subject a
correspondent to the New York Tribune writes:

"When Khartoum fell in 1885 I was in Egypt, and I well remember
that the Arabs settled in the neighborhood of the pyramids knew
all about it, as well as about Gen. Gordon's death, days and
days before the news reached Cairo by telegraph from the
Soudanese frontier. Yet Khartoum is thousands of miles distant
from Cairo and the telegraph wires from the frontier were
monopolized by the government."

The same correspondent observes that these Arabs told him, months
previously, of the defeat of the Egyptian army under Baker Pasha
at Tokar--that they not only gave him the news, but several
particulars concerning the matter, two full days before
intelligence was received from the Red Sea coast. In answer to
the suggestion that such information might have been conveyed by
means of signal fires, this writer says that such fires would
have attracted the attention of the English and native scouts,
and that the whole country is unpropitious to such methods;
besides, no system of signal fires, no matter how elaborate,
could have conveyed the news so quickly and in such detail. The
whole matter is summed up as follows:

"The Arabs, therefore, have, manifestly, some other means of
rapid communication at their command. One is inclined to the
presumption that they, like the learned Pundits of Northern
India, have a knowledge of the forces of Nature that are yet
hidden from our most eminent scientists."

Can it be that the Arabs are acquainted with the very recently
discovered scientific principle, that it is possible to transmit
telegraphic communications without wires, and simply by means of
magnetic currents in earth and water?

Nor is this remarkable skill confined to the "barbarians of the
Old World." A correspondent from the far West to the New York
Press wrote that long before the news of the Custer massacre
reached Fort Abraham Lincoln the Sioux had communicated it to
their brethren. The scouts in Crook's column to the south knew
of it almost immediately, as did those with Gibbon farther
northwest. The same writer says that several years ago a naval
lieutenant ran short of provisions. He pushed on to a settlement
as rapidly as possible and upon arriving there found that the
inhabitants had provided for his coming and had a bounteous store
awaiting him. The people in the village were of a different
tribe from those whose domain he had passed, and so far as could
be learned were not in communication with them.

The earliest accounts which we have of Egypt and Chaldea reveal
the fact that at a very remote period they were old and powerful
civilizations, that they had a settled government, a pure and
philosophical religion, and a profound knowledge of science and
art; yet, notwithstanding the great antiquity of these
civilizations, that of the people which created them must have
been infinitely more remote.

The earliest historic nations recognized the greatness of these
ancient people and the extent of their dominion. In the oldest
geographical writings of the Sanskrit people, the ancient
Ethiopia, or land of Cush of Greek and Hebrew antiquity, is
clearly described. Stephanus of Byzantium, who is said to
represent the opinions of the most ancient Greeks, says:
"Ethiopia was the first established country on the earth, and the
Ethiopians were the first who introduced the worship of the Gods
and who established laws."[65]

[65] Quoted by John D. Baldwin, Prehistoric Nations, p. 62.

Heeren in his researches says:

"From the remotest times to the present, the Ethiopians have been
one of the most celebrated, and yet the most mysterious of
nations. In the earliest traditions of nearly all the more
civilized nations of antiquity, the name of this distant people
is found. The annals of the Egyptian priests are full of them,
and the nations of inner Asia, on the Euphrates and Tigris, have
interwoven the fictions of the Ethiopians with their traditions
of the wars and conquests of their heroes; and, at a period
equally remote, they glimmer in Greek mythology. When the Greeks
scarcely knew Italy and Sicily by name, the Ethiopians were
celebrated in the verses of their poets, and when the faint gleam
of tradition and fable gives way to the clear light of history,
the lustre of the Ethiopians is not diminished."

Homer says of them that they were a "divided people dwelling at
the ends of the earth toward the setting and the rising Sun."
Although it is possible at the present time to discover very many
of the facts bearing upon the civilization of this ancient
people, it is impossible in the present condition of human
knowledge to discover when civilized life began on the earth.
Whether the ancient Arabians or Ethiopians who belonged to the
old Cushite race, and who are believed by many to be the most
ancient people of whom we have any trace, were the first
colonizers, or whether they were preceded by a still older
civilization, history and tradition are alike silent; yet the
fact seems to be tolerably well authenticated that this
enlightened race, now nearly extinct, carried civilization to
Chaldea more than seven thousand years B.C., that it colonized
Egypt, engrafted its own institutions in India, colonized
Phoenicia, and by its maritime and commercial enterprise,
introduced civilized conditions into every quarter of the globe.
Even in Peru, in Mexico, in Central America, and in the United
States are evidences of the old Cushite religion and enterprise.

Baldwin, commenting on the greatness of this remarkable people,
says that early in the period of its colonizing enterprise,
commercial greatness, and extensive empire, it established
colonies in the valleys of the Nile and the Euphrates, which in
later ages became Barbary, Egypt, and Chaldea. The ancient
Cushite nation occupied Arabia and other extensive regions of
Africa, India, and Western Asia to the Mediterranean. While
remarking upon the vastness and antiquity of this old Cushite
race, Rawlinson says that they founded most of the towns of
Western Asia. The vast commercial system which formed a
connecting link between the various countries of the globe, was
created by this people, the great manufacturing skill and
unrivalled maritime activity of the Phoenicians which extended
down to the time of the Hellenes and the Romans having been a
result of the irgenius. It was doubtless during the supremacy of
the ancient Cushite race that a knowledge of astronomy was
developed and that the arts of life were carried to a high degree
of perfection. However, through the peculiar influences which
were brought to bear upon human experience, this knowledge, which
was bequeathed to their descendants or to the nations which they
had created, was subsequently lost or practically obscured, only
fragments of it having been preserved from the general ruin.

Within these fragments have been preserved in India certain
evidences of a profound knowledge of Nature, or of the at present
unknown forces in the universe, a demonstration of which, in our
own time, would probably be looked upon as a miraculous
interposition of supernatural agencies.

Regarding the refinements and luxuries of this ancient people,
Diodorus Siculus declares that they flowed in streams of gold and
silver, that "the porticoes of their temples were overlaid with
gold, and that the adornments of their buildings were in some
parts of silver and gold, and in others of ivory and precious
stones, and other things of great value."

From various observations, it is plain that the Etrurians
represented a stage of civilization far in advance of the
Pelasgians who founded Rome --a race which, although superior in
numbers, arms, and influence, were, when compared with this more
ancient people, little better than barbarians.[66]

[66] It is thought that as early as the nineteenth century B.C.
the Pelasgians or Pelargians went to Aenonia, or Ionia. It was a
detachment of this people which, according to Herodotus, captured
a number of Athenian women on the coast of Africa, lived with
them as wives, and raised families by them, but, "because they
differed in manners from themselves," they murdered them, which
act was attended by a "dreadful pestilence." It is the opinion
of certain writers that these women were of a different religious
faith from their captors, and that so intense and bitter was the
feeling upon the comparative importance of the sex functions in
pro-creation, that their husbands, unable to change their views,
put an end to their existence.

Nothing, perhaps, proclaims the degree of civilization attained
by the ancient Etrurians more plainly than the exquisite
perfection which is observed in the specimens of art found in
their tumuli. Within the tombs of Etruscans buried long prior to
the foundation of Rome, or the birth of the fine arts in Greece,
have been found unmistakable evidence of the advanced condition
of this people. The exquisite coloring and grouping of the
figures on their elegant vases, one of which, on exhibition in
the British Museum, portrays the birth of Minerva, or Wisdom,
show the delicacy of their taste, the purity of their
conceptions, and their true artistic skill.

Among their mechanical arts, a few specimens of which have been
preserved, is the potter's wheel, an invention which, so far as
its utility is concerned, is declared to be absolutely
perfect--the most complete of all the instruments of the world.
"It never has been improved and admits of no improvement." In
fact all that may be gathered concerning the ancient Etrurians, a
people who by the most able writers upon this subject is believed
to have been one of the first to leave the Asiatic hive, is in
perfect accord with the facts already set forth regarding that
mighty nation, perhaps of upper Asia, who carried the study of
astronomy to a degree of perfection never again reached until
after the discovery of the Copernican system, who invented the
Neros and the Metonic Cycle, who colonized Egypt and Chaldea, and
who carried civilization to the remotest ends of the earth.

The philosophy of the Etrurians corresponds with that of the most
ancient Hindoo system, and displays a degree of wisdom
unparalleled by any of the peoples belonging to the early
historic ages. According to their cosmogony, the evolutionary or
creative processes involved twelve vast periods of time. At the
end of the first period appeared the planets and the earth, in
the second the firmament was made, in the third the waters were
brought forth, in the fourth the sun, moon, and stars were placed
in the heavens, in the fifth living creatures appeared on the
earth, and in the sixth man was produced. These six periods
comprehended one-half the duration of the cycle. After six more
periods had elapsed, or after the lapse of the entire cycle of
twelve periods, all creation was dissolved or drawn to the source
of all life. Subsequently a new creation was brought forth under
which the same order of events will take place. The involution
of life, or its return to the great source whence it sprang, did
not, however, involve the destruction of matter. The seeds of
returning life were preserved in an ark or boat--the female
principle, within which all things are contained. This indrawing
of life constituted "the night of Brahme." It was represented by
Vishnu sleeping on the bottom of the sea.

From the facts adduced in relation to the Etrurians we are not
surprised to find that their religion was that of the ancient
Nature worshippers, and that a mother with her child stood for
their god-idea. In referring to the religion of this people, and
to the great antiquity of the worship of the Virgin and Child,
Higgins remarks: "Amongst the Gauls, more than a hundred years
before the Christian era, in the district of Chartres, a festival
was celebrated in honor of the Virgin," and in the year 1747, a
mithraic monument was found "on which is exhibited a female
nursing an infant--the Goddess of the year nursing the God day."
To which he adds: "The Protestant ought to recollect that his
mode of keeping Christmas Day is only a small part of the old
festival as it yet exists amongst the followers of the Romish
Church. Theirs is the remnant of the old Etruscan worship of the
virgin and child." As a proof of the above, Higgins cites
Gorius's Tuscan Antiquities, where may be seen the figure of an

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