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The Hebrew god "El" was the same object that they (Israelites)
continued to worship as "Molech", the "Bull of Heaven", the
glorious first sun of the Earth, the planet Saturn.

The Bull of Heaven

Up from Earth's Centre through the Seventh Gate
I rose, and on the Throne of Saturn sate;
And many a Knot unravel'd by the Road;
But not the Master-knot of Human Fate.
Omar Khayam, Rubaiyat quatrain XXXI

One of the most common themes of ancient cultures and their religions is that of the sacred "Bull of Heaven", yet the average person in the "Christianized" Western world who has a passing familiarity with the Biblical story knows only about the Israelite "Golden Calf" episode. There is no awareness that virtually every ancient culture worshipped the planet Saturn as God, or as the Chief God, that every prominent religion of today is heavily infused with ancient Saturnian ceremonies and themes, and that this planet was known as the "Bull of Heaven" in these cultures. There is no awareness of the enormity of the involvement of ancient people with the worship of the bull, nor of its pervasiveness. What is most distressing is that there is no inkling of why this is so, and the great magnitude of evidence for it.

During the polar alignment era, the ending phase of the Golden Age of antiquity, the overhead alignment of the reddish Mars, the aqua Venus and the golden Saturn as seen from earth was a huge imposing configuration always over the north pole, and it visually dominated everything in the sky. At times, when the then distant solar sun shone on this configuration from behind, it made a bright horned crescent appear on the face of Saturn, and at times the whole configuration looked remarkably like a bull.

Given that the earth was unpopulated below the equatorial region–the southern hemisphere was in the shadow and was known as the netherworld–every person on earth could see this glorious spectacle to the north. And it wasn't just visually imposing, but was also the source of light and energy providing an Edenic tropical clime for the northern hemisphere of the earth. This and the previous era was the real basis for the fabled "Garden of Eden", the "Isle of Avalon", the "Elysian Fields". etc. It is no wonder that every culture on earth "worshipped" and mythologized the Bull of Heaven! There are hundreds of ancient references that attest to this fact.

____________________

Miscellaneous information concerning the Bull of Heaven

Marduk is the "bull of Utu". Shiva's steed is Nandi, the Bull. The sacred bull motif survives in the constellation Taurus.

The Sumerian Epic of Gilgamesh depicts the killing by Gilgamesh and Enkidu of the Bull of Heaven, Gugalanna, first husband of Ereshkigal, as an act of defiance of the gods. From the earliest times, the bull was Saturnian in Mesopotamia (its horns representing the glorious revolving crescent on Saturn).

In Egypt, the bull was worshiped as Apis, the embodiment of Ptah and later of Osiris. A long series of ritually perfect bulls were identified by the god's priests, housed in the temple for their lifetime, then embalmed and encased in a giant sarcophagus. A long sequence of monolithic stone sarcophagi were housed in the Serapeum, and were rediscovered by Auguste Mariette at Saqqara in 1851. The bull was also worshipped as Mnevis, the embodiment of Atum-Ra, in Heliopolis. Ka in Egyptian is both a religious concept of life-force/power and the word for bull.

The sacred bull of the Hattians, whose elaborate standards were found at Alaca Höyük alongside those of the sacred stag, survived in Hurrian and Hittite mythology as Seri and Hurri ("Day" and "Night"), the bulls who carried the weather god Teshub on their backs or in his chariot and grazed on the ruins of cities

Bulls were a central theme in the Minoan civilization, with bull heads and bull horns used as symbols in the Knossos palace. Minoan frescos and ceramics depict bull-leaping, in which participants of both sexes vaulted over bulls by grasping their horns. The running of the buls in pamplona and bull fighting in Spain are modern vestiges of the activities in remembrance of the great bull of heaven.

Bulls also appear on seals from the Indus Valley Civilisation.

Nandi appears in Hindu mythology as the primary vehicle and the principal gana (follower) of Shiva.

In Cyprus, bull masks made from real skulls were worn in rites. Bull-masked terracotta figurines [3] and Neolithic bull-horned stone altars have been found in Cyprus.

The Canaanite (and later Carthaginian) statue to which sacrifices were burnt, either as a deity or a type of sacrifice - Moloch - was referred to as a horned man, and likened to Cronus by the Romans. There may be a connection between sacrifice to the Cretan horned man Minotaur and Cronus' himself. Both Baʿal and El were associated with the bull in Ugaritic texts

Cronus' son Zeus was raised on Crete in hiding from his father. Having consumed all of his own children (the gods). Cronus is fed a boulder by Zeus (to represent Zeus' own body so he appears consumed) and an emetic. His vomiting of the boulder and subsequently the other gods (his children) in the Titanomachy bears comparison with the volcanic eruption that appears to be described in Zeus' battle with Typhon in the Theogony. Consequently, Cronus may be associated with the eruption of Thera through the myth of his defeat by Zeus. The later association between Canaanite religions in which child sacrifice took place Ezek. 20:25-26 and the association of child sacrifice with a horned god (as potentially on Crete and certainly in Carthage) may also be connected with the Greek myth of sending young men and women to the Minotaur, a bull-headed man.

Exodus 32:4 "He took this from their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool and made it into a molten calf; and they said, 'This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt'."

Nehemiah 9:18 "even when they made an idol shaped like a calf and said, 'This is your god who brought you out of Egypt!' They committed terrible blasphemies."

Calf-idols are referred to later in the Tanakh, such as in the Book of Hosea,[5] which would seem accurate as they were a fixture of near-eastern cultures.

Solomon's "Molten Sea" basin stood on twelve brazen bulls.[6][7]

Young bulls were set as frontier markers at Dan and Bethel, the frontiers of the Kingdom of Israel.

Much later, in Abrahamic religions, the bull motif became a bull demon or the "horned devil" in contrast and conflict to earlier traditions. The bull is familiar in Judeo-Christian cultures from the Biblical episode wherein an idol of the golden calf ((Hebrew: עֵגֶּל הַזָהָב‎‎) is made by Aaron and worshipped by the Hebrews in the wilderness of the Sinai Peninsula (Book of Exodus). The text of the Hebrew Bible can be understood to refer to the idol as representing a separate god, or as representing Yahweh himself, perhaps through an association or religious syncretism with Egyptian or Levantine bull gods, rather than a new deity in itself.

Among the Twelve Olympians, Hera's epithet Bo-opis is usually translated "ox-eyed" Hera, but the term could just as well apply if the goddess had the head of a cow, and thus the epithet reveals the presence of an earlier, though not necessarily more primitive, iconic view. (Heinrich Schlieman, 1976) Classical Greeks never otherwise referred to Hera simply as the cow, though her priestess Io was so literally a heifer that she was stung by a gadfly, and it was in the form of a heifer that Zeus coupled with her. Zeus took over the earlier roles, and, in the form of a bull that came forth from the sea, abducted the high-born Phoenician Europa and brought her, significantly, to Crete.

Dionysus was another god of resurrection who was strongly linked to the bull. In a worship hymn from Olympia, at a festival for Hera, Dionysus is also invited to come as a bull, "with bull-foot raging." "Quite frequently he is portrayed with bull horns, and in Kyzikos he has a tauromorphic image," Walter Burkert relates, and refers also to an archaic myth in which Dionysus is slaughtered as a bull calf and impiously eaten by the Titans. [8]  In the passion of Dionysus, the god was represented by a bull (as was Osiris, the Apis bull).

For the Greeks, the bull was strongly linked to the Cretan Bull: Theseus of Athens had to capture the ancient sacred bull of Marathon (the "Marathonian bull") before he faced the Minotaur (Greek for "Bull of Minos"), who the Greeks imagined as a man with the head of a bull at the center of the labyrinth. Minotaur was fabled to be born of the Queen and a bull, bringing the king to build the labyrinth to hide his family's shame. Living in solitude made the boy wild and ferocious, unable to be tamed or beaten. Yet Walter Burkert's constant warning is, "It is hazardous to project Greek tradition directly into the Bronze age."[9] Only one Minoan image of a bull-headed man has been found, a tiny Minoan sealstone currently held in the Archaeological Museum of Chania.

The religious practices of the Roman Empire of the 2nd to 4th centuries included the taurobolium, in which a bull was sacrificed for the well being of the people and the state. Around the mid-2nd century, the practice became identified with the worship of Magna Mater, but was not previously associated only with that cult (cultus). Public taurobolia, enlisting the benevolence of Magna Mater on behalf of the emperor, became common in Italy and Gaul, Hispania and Africa. The last public taurobolium for which there is an inscription was carried out at Mactar in Numidia at the close of the 3rd century. It was performed in honor of the emperors Diocletian and Maximian.

Another Roman mystery cult in which a sacrificial bull played a role was that of the 1st-4th century Mithraic Mysteries. In the so-called "tauroctony" artwork of that cult (cultus), and which appears in all its temples, the god Mithras is seen to slay a sacrificial bull.

The practice of bullfighting in the Iberian Peninsula and southern France are connected with the legends of Saturnin of Toulouse and his protégé in Pamplona, Fermin. These are inseparably linked to bull-sacrifices by the vivid manner of their martyrdoms

Moloch (Masoretic מֹלֶךְ mōlek, Greek Μολόχ) is the Biblical name relating to a Canaanite god associated with child sacrifice. The name of this deity is also sometimes spelled Molech, Milcom, or Malcam.

The name Moloch results from a dysphemic vocalisation in the Second Temple period of a theonym based on the root mlk "king". There are a number of Canaanite gods with names based on this root, which became summarily associated with Moloch, including Biblical מַלְכָּם Malkam "great king" (KJV Milcom), which appears to refer to a god of the Ammonites, as well as Tyrian Melqart and others.

Rabbinical tradition depicted Moloch as a bronze statue heated with fire into which the victims were thrown. This has been associated with reports by Greco-Roman authors on the child sacrifices in Carthage to Baal Hammon,[1] especially since archaeological excavations since the 1920s have produced evidence for child sacrifice in Carthage as well as inscriptions including the term MLK, either a theonym or a technical term associated with sacrifice. In interpretatio graeca, the Phoenician god was identified with Cronus, due to the parallel mytheme of Cronus devouring his children.

Otto Eissfeldt in 1935 argued that mlk was not to be taken as a theonym at all but as a term for a type of fire sacrifice, and that *lĕmōlek "as a molk-sacrifice" had been reinterpreted as the name of a Canaanite idol following the Deuteronomic reform under Josiah (r. 640–609 BC). According to Eissfeldt, this 7th-century reform abolished the child sacrifice that had been happening, despite being unacceptable in the Jewish religion.

The vocalization Molek occurs eight times in the Masoretic Text, predominantly (five times) in Leviticus:
  • Leviticus 18:21 "And thou shalt not let any of thy seed pass through the fire to Molech, neither shalt thou profane the name of thy God: I am the LORD."
  • Leviticus 20:2: "Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones."
  • Leviticus 20:3: "And I will set my face against that man, and will cut him off from among his people; because he hath given of his seed unto Molech, to defile my sanctuary, and to profane my holy name."
  • Leviticus 20:4: "And if the people of the land do any ways hide their eyes from the man, when he giveth of his seed unto Molech, and kill him not"
  • Leviticus 20:5: "Then I will set my face against that man, and against his family, and will cut him off, and all that go a whoring after him, to commit whoredom with Molech, from among their people."

Two further occurrences connect the practice with Tophet, a place of sacrifice in the Valley of Hinnom (Gehenna, which later acquired the connotation of "Hell"):

  • 2 Kings 23:10: "And he defiled Topheth, which is in the valley of the children of Hinnom, that no man might make his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to Molech."
  • Jeremiah 32:35: "And they built the high places of Baal, which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech; which I commanded them not, neither came it into my mind, that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin."

Tophet or Topheth, Moloch's temple, was divided into seven compartments, also associated with the seven hells.

Isaiah 30:33 has the vocalization melek ("king"), but this is widely accepted as an omission of the Masoretic correctors.:[8] "For Tophet is ordained of old; yea, for the king it is prepared; he hath made it deep and large: the pile thereof is fire and much wood; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it."

On the other hand, while 1 Kings 11:7 has the vocalization Molek, in "Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon",

The variant Malkam, rendered by KJV as Milcom, is found only three times in Kings[11] (1 Kings 11:5, 11:33 and 2 Kings 23:13).

Later commentators have compared these accounts with similar ones from Greek and Latin sources speaking of the offering of children by fire as sacrifices in the Punic city of Carthage, a Phoenician colony. Cleitarchus, Diodorus Siculus and Plutarch all mention burning of children as an offering to Cronus or Saturn, that is to Baal Hammon, the chief god of Carthage

The 12th-century Rashi, commenting on Jeremiah 7:31 stated:

Tophet is Moloch, which was made of brass; and they heated him from his lower parts; and his hands being stretched out, and made hot, they put the child between his hands, and it was burnt; when it vehemently cried out; but the priests beat a drum, that the father might not hear the voice of his son, and his heart might not be moved.

In 1841, both Georg Friedrich Daumer and Friedrich Wilhelm Ghillany published influential works on the topic.[18] These authors came to the conclusion that the Biblical text reflects an original identity of Molek and Yahweh, and that the cult of Yahweh grew out of that of Molek by the abolishing of human sacrifice. The authors find numerous instances of vestigial references to human sacrifice, most notably the law that all firstborns must be "consecrated" or "given" to Yahweh (Exodus 13:2, 22:28).

Gustave Flaubert's Salammbô, a semi-historical novel about Carthage published in 1862, included a version of the Carthaginian religion, including the god Moloch, whom he characterized as a god to whom the Carthaginians offered children. Flaubert described this Moloch mostly according to the Rabbinic descriptions, but with a few of his own additions. From chapter 7:

Then further back, higher than the candelabrum, and much higher than the altar, rose the Moloch, all of iron, and with gaping apertures in his human breast. His outspread wings were stretched upon the wall, his tapering hands reached down to the ground; three black stones bordered by yellow circles represented three eyeballs on his brow, and his bull's head was raised with a terrible effort as if in order to bellow.

In Bertrand Russell's A Free Man's Worship (1903), Moloch is used to describe a particularly savage brand of religion:

The savage, like ourselves, feels the oppression of his impotence before the powers of Nature; but having in himself nothing that he respects more than Power, he is willing to prostrate himself before his gods, without inquiring whether they are worthy of his worship. Pathetic and very terrible is the long history of cruelty and torture, of degradation and human sacrifice, endured in the hope of placating the jealous gods: surely, the trembling believer thinks, when what is most precious has been freely given, their lust for blood must be appeased, and more will not be required. The religion of Moloch–as such creeds may be generically called–is in essence the cringing submission of the slave, who dare not, even in his heart, allow the thought that his master deserves no adulation. Since the independence of ideals is not yet acknowledged, Power may be freely worshipped, and receive an unlimited respect, despite its wanton infliction of pain.

The worship of Baʿal Hammon flourished in the Phoenician colony of Carthage. His supremacy among the Carthaginian gods is believed to date to the 5th century BC, after relations between Carthage and Tyre were broken off at the time of the Punic defeat in Himera.[4] Modern scholars identify him variously with the Northwest Semitic god El or with Dagon.[ citation needed]

In Carthage and North Africa Baʿal Hammon was especially associated with the ram and was worshiped also as Baʿal Qarnaim ("Lord of Two Horns") in an open-air sanctuary at Jebel Boukornine ("the two-horned hill") across the bay from Carthage, in Tunisia.[ citation needed] He was probably never identified with Baʿal Melqart, although one finds this equation in older scholarship.[ citation needed]

Ancient Greek writers identified him with the Titan Cronus. In ancient Rome, he was identified with Saturn, and the cultural exchange between Rome and Carthage as a result of the Second Punic War may have influenced the development of the Roman religious festival Saturnalia.

Kronos can refer to:

  • Cronus, a Titan, the father of Zeus, Poseidon, Hades, Hestia, Demeter, and Hera.
In Greek mythology, Cronus, also known as Kronos (/ ˈkrnəs/ or /ˈkrnɒs/ from Greek: Κρόνος, krónos), was the leader and youngest of the first generation of Titans, the divine descendants of Uranus, the sky, and Gaia, the earth. He overthrew his father and ruled during the mythological Golden Age, until he was overthrown by his own son Zeus and imprisoned in Tartarus.

Cronus was the leader and youngest of the first generation of Titans, the divine descendants of Uranus, the sky, and Gaia, the earth. He overthrew his father and ruled during the mythological Golden Age, until he was overthrown by his own son Zeus and imprisoned in Tartarus.

Cronus was usually depicted with a harpe, scythe or a sickle, which was the instrument he used to castrate and depose Uranus, his father. In Athens, on the twelfth day of the Attic month of Hekatombaion, a festival called Kronia was held in honour of Cronus to celebrate the harvest, suggesting that, as a result of his association with the virtuous Golden Age, Cronus continued to preside as a patron of harvest. Cronus was also identified in classical antiquity with the Roman deity Saturn.

When Hellenes encountered Phoenicians and, later, Hebrews, they identified the Semitic El, by interpretatio graeca, with Cronus. The association was recorded c. AD 100 by Philo of Byblos' Phoenician history, as reported in Eusebius' Præparatio Evangelica I.10.16.[

As a result of Cronus' importance to the Romans, his Roman variant, Saturn, has had a large influence on Western culture. The seventh day of the Judaeo-Christian week is called in Latin Dies Saturni ("Day of Saturn"), which in turn was adapted and became the source of the English word Saturday.

In Egyptian mythology, Apis or Hapis (alternatively spelled Hapi-ankh) is a bull-deity that was worshipped in the Memphis region. "Apis served as an intermediary between humans and an all-powerful god (originally Ptah, later Osiris, then Atum)." [quote: Virtual Egyptian Museum]

Apis was the most important of all the sacred animals in Egypt, and, as with the others, its importance increased as time went on. Greek and Roman authors have much to say about Apis, the marks by which the black bull-calf was recognized, the manner of his conception by a ray from heaven, his house at Memphis with court for disporting himself, the mode of prognostication from his actions, the mourning at his death, his costly burial, and the rejoicings throughout the country when a new Apis was found. Auguste Mariette's excavation of the Serapeum at Memphis revealed the tombs of over sixty animals, ranging from the time of Amenophis III to that of Ptolemy Alexander. At first each animal was buried in a separate tomb with a chapel built above it.

The Apis bull was pictured with the sun-disk between his horns, being one of few deities associated with her symbol. When the disk was depicted on his head with his horns below and the triangle on his forehead, an ankh was suggested.

Claudieus Ptolemy reported that the inhabitants of Mesopotamia revered the star of Saturn as "Mithras Helios"

Here is an article by Ev Cochrane on the subject. See: The Bull and the Boar

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