by H. P. Blavatsky
The Secret Doctrine -- Vol. 2
Whence the idea, and the true meaning of the term "Eden"? Christians
will maintain that the Garden of Eden is the holy Paradise, the
place desecrated by the sin of Adam and Eve; the Occultist will deny
this dead-letter interpretation, and show the reverse. One need not
believe and see in the Bible divine revelation in order to say that
this ancient book, if read esoterically, is based upon the same
universal traditions. What Eden was is partially shown in Isis
It was said that:
"The Garden of Eden as a locality is
no myth at all; it belongs to those landmarks of history which
occasionally disclose to the student that the Bible is not all
mere allegory. Eden, or the Hebrew
Gan-Eden, meaning the park or the garden of Eden, is an archaic
name of the country watered by the Euphrates and its many
branches, from Asia and Armenia to the Erythraean sea."
(A. Wilder says that Gan-duniyas
is a name of Babylonia.)
In the Chaldean "Book of Numbers," the
location is designated in numerals, and in the cypher Rosicrucian
manuscript, left by Count St. Germain, it is fully described. In the
Assyrian Tablets it is rendered Ganduniyas.
"Behold," says the
(Elohim) of Genesis, "the man is become as one of us."
The Elohim may be accepted in one sense
for gods or powers, and in another for Aleim, or
priests -- the
hierophants initiated into the good and evil of this world; for
there was a college of priests called the Aleim, while the head of
their caste, or the chief of the hierophants was known as Java-Aleim.
Instead of becoming a neophyte, and gradually obtaining his esoteric
knowledge through a regular initiation, an Adam, or Man, uses his
intuitional faculties and, prompted by the serpent (Woman and
matter), tastes of the Tree of Knowledge -- the esoteric or
Doctrine -- unlawfully.
The priests of Hercules, or Mel-karth,
the "Lord of the Eden," all wore "coats of skin."
The text says:
"And Java-Aleim made for Adam and his wife
'Chitonuth our.' "
The first Hebrew word, "chiton," is the Greek [Chiton],
Chiton. It became a Slavonic word by adoption from the Bible, and
means a coat, an upper garment.
"Though containing the same
substratum of esoteric truth as does every early Cosmogony, the
Hebrew Scripture wears on its face the marks of a double origin.
Its Genesis is purely a reminiscence of the Babylonian
captivity. The names of places, men and even objects, can be
traced from the original text to the Chaldeans and the Akkadians,
the progenitors and Aryan instructors of the former.
It is strongly contested that the
Akkad tribes of Chaldea, Babylonia and Assyria were in any way
cognate with the Brahmans of Hindostan; but there are more
proofs in favour of this opinion than otherwise. The Shemite or
Assyrian ought, perchance, to have been called the Turanian, and
the Mongolians have been denominated Scyths. But if the
Akkadians ever existed, otherwise than in the imagination of
some ethnologists and philologists, they certainly would never
have been a Turanian tribe, as some Assyriologists have striven
to make us believe.
They were simply emigrants on their
way to Asia Minor from India, the cradle of humanity, and their
sacerdotal adepts tarried to civilize and initiate a barbarian
people. Halevy proved the fallacy of the Turanian mania in
regard to Akkadian people, and other scientists have proved that
the Babylonian civilization was neither born nor developed in
that country. It was imported from India, and the importers were
And now, ten years after this was
written, we find ourselves corroborated by Professor Sayce, who says
in his first Hibbert lecture that the culture of the Babylonian city
Eridu was of foreign importation. It came from India.
"Much of the theology was borrowed
by the Semites from the non-Semitic Akkadians or proto-Chaldeans,
whom they supplanted, and whose local cults they had neither the
will nor the power to uproot. Indeed, throughout a long course
of ages the two races, Semites and Akkadians, lived side by
side, their notions and worship of the gods blending insensibly
Here, the Akkadians are called
"non-Semitic," as we had insisted they were in "Isis," which is
another corroboration. And we are no less right in always
maintaining that the Jewish Biblical history was a compilation of
historical facts, arranged from other people's history in Jewish
garb -- Genesis excluded, which is esotericism pure and simple.
But it is really from the Euxine to
Kashmir and beyond, that science has to search for the cradle -- or
rather one of the chief cradles -- of mankind and the sons of Ad-ah;
and especially in after times, when the Garden of Ed-en on the
Euphrates became the college of the astrologers and magi,
But this "college" and this Eden belong to the Fifth Race, and are
simply a faint reminiscence of the Adi-varsha, of the primeval Third
Race. What is the etymological meaning of the word Eden? In Greek it
is [hedone], signifying voluptuousness. In this aspect it is no
better than the Olympus of the Greeks, Indra's heaven (Swarga) on
Mount Meru, and even the paradise full of Houris, promised by
Mahomet to the faithful.
The Garden of Eden was never the
property of the Jews; for China, which can hardly be suspected of
having known anything of the Jews 2,000 B.C., has such a primitive
garden in Central Asia inhabited by the "Dragons of Wisdom," the
Initiates. And according to Klaproth, the hieroglyphical chart
copied from a Japanese Cyclopaedia in the book of Fo-kone-ky, places
its "Garden of Wisdom" on the plateau of Pamir between the highest
peaks of the Himalayan ranges; and describing it as the culminating
point of Central Asia, shows the four rivers -- Oxus, Indus,
and Silo -- flowing from a common source, the "Lake of the Dragons."
But this is not the Genetic Eden; nor is it the Kabalistical Garden
of Eden. For the former -- Eden Illa-ah -- means in one sense
Wisdom, a state like that of Nirvana, a paradise of Bliss; while in
another sense it refers to Intellectual man himself, the container
of the Eden in which grows the tree of Knowledge of good and evil:
man being the Knower thereof.
Renan and Barthelemy St. Hilaire, basing themselves "on the most
solid inductions," think it impossible to doubt any longer, and both
place the cradle of humanity "on the region of the Timaus."
Finally, the Asiatic Journal concludes
"All the traditions of the human
race gathering its primitive families at the region of their
birth-place, show them to us grouped around the countries where
Jewish tradition places the Garden of Eden; where the Aryans
(Zoroastrians) established their Airyana-vaego or the Meru (?).
They are hemmed in to the North by the countries which join the
lake Aral, and to the South by Baltistan, or Little Tibet.
Everything concurs in proving that there was the abode of that
primitive humanity to which we have to be traced."
That "primitive humanity" was in its
Fifth Race, when the "four-mouthed Dragon," the lake, of which very
few traces are now left, was the abode of the "Sons of Wisdom," the
first mind-born sons of the Third Race. Yet it was neither the only
one nor the primitive cradle of humanity, though it was the copy of
the cradle, verily, of the first thinking divine man.
It was the Paradesa, the highland of the
first Sanskrit-speaking people, the Hedone, the country of delight
of the Greeks, but it was not the "bower of voluptuousness" of the
Chaldeans, for the latter was only the reminiscence of it; and also
because it was not there that the Fall of Man occurred after the
The Eden of the Jews was copied from the Chaldean copy.
That the Fall of man into generation occurred during the earliest
portion of what science calls the Mesozoic times, or the age of the
reptiles, is evidenced by the Bible phraseology concerning the
serpent, the nature of which is explained in the Zohar. The question
is not whether Eve's incident with the tempting reptile is
allegorical or textual, for no one can doubt that it is the former,
but to show the antiquity of the symbolism on the very face of it,
and that it was not only a Jewish but an universal idea.
Now we find in the Zohar a very strange
assertion, one that is calculated to provoke the reader to merry
laughter by its ludicrous absurdity. It tells us that the serpent,
which was used by Shamael (the supposed Satan), to seduce Eve, was a
kind of flying camel [kamelomorphon].
A "flying camel" is indeed too much for the most liberal-minded
F.R.S. Nevertheless, the Zohar, which can hardly be expected to use
the language of a Cuvier, was right in its description:*
for we find it called in the
old Zoroastrian MSS. Aschmogh, which in the Avesta is represented as
having lost after the Fall "its nature and its name," and is
described as a huge serpent with a camel's neck.
"There are no winged serpents, nor
veritable dragons," asserts Salverte,"
grasshoppers are called by the Greeks winged serpents, and this
metaphor may have created several narratives on the existence of
There are none now; but there is no
reason why they should not have existed during the Mesozoic age; and
Cuvier, who has reconstructed their skeletons, is a witness to
"flying camels." Already, after finding simple fossils of certain
saurians, the great naturalist has written, that,
"if anything can justify the Hydra
and other monsters, whose figures were so often repeated by
mediaeval historians, it is incontestably the Plesiosaurus."
See Moses Maimonides, "More Nevochim."
** "Science Occulte," p. 646.
*** "Revolution du Globe," vol.
v., p. 464.
We are unaware if Cuvier had added
anything in the way of a further mea culpa. But we may well imagine
his confusion, for all his slanders against archaic veracity, when
he found himself in the presence of a flying saurian, "the
Pterodactyl" (found in Germany), "78 feet long, and carrying
vigorous wings attached to its reptilian body." That fossil is
described as a reptile, the little fingers of whose hands are so
elongated as to bear a long membranous wing.
Here, then, the "flying camel"
of the Zohar is vindicated. For surely, between the long neck of the
Plesiosaurus and the membranous wing of the Pterodactyl, or still
better the Mosasaurus, there is enough scientific probability to
build a "flying camel," or a long-necked dragon. Prof. Cope, of
Philadelphia, has shown that the Mosasaurus fossil in the chalk was
a winged serpent of this kind. There are characters in its
vertebrae, which indicate union with the Ophidia rather than with
And now to the main question. It is well known that Antiquity has
never claimed palaeontography and paleontology among its arts and
sciences; and it never had its Cuviers. Yet on Babylonian tiles, and
especially in old Chinese and Japanese drawings, in the oldest
Pagodas and monuments, and in the Imperial library at Pekin, many a
traveller has seen and recognized perfect representations of
Plesiosauri and Pterodactyls in the multiform Chinese dragons.*
Moreover, the prophets
speak in the Bible of the flying fiery serpents,**
and Job mentions the Leviathan.***
Now the following questions are put very directly:
I. How could the ancient
nations know anything of the extinct monsters of the
carboniferous and Mesozoic times, and even represent and
describe them orally and pictorially, unless they had either
seen those monsters themselves or possessed descriptions of them
in their traditions, which descriptions necessitate living and
II. And if such eye-witnesses are once admitted (unless
retrospective clairvoyance is granted), how can humanity and the
first palaeolithic men be no earlier than about the middle of
the tertiary period? We must bear in mind that most of the men
of science will not allow man to have appeared before the
Quaternary period, and thus shut him out completely from the
Cenozoic times. Here we have extinct species of animals, which
disappeared from the face of the Earth millions of years ago,
described by, and known to, nations whose civilization, it is
said, could hardly have begun a few thousand years ago.
We read in the "Memoire a l'Academie" of the "naive astonishment of
Geoffrey St. Hilaire, when M. de Paravey showed to him in some old
Chinese works and Babylonian tiles dragons,... saurians and
ornithorhynchuses (aquatic animals found only in Australia), etc.,
extinct animals that he had thought unknown on earth... till his
** See Isaiah, xxx. 6: "The
viper and the flying serpent unto the land of trouble and anguish,"
and the fiery serpents conquered by the brazen serpent of Moses.
*** The fossils reconstructed by
science, which we know ought to be sufficient warrant for the
possibility of even a Leviathan, let alone Isaiah's flying serpents,
or saraph mehophep, which words are translated in all the Hebrew
dictionaries as "saraph," enflamed or fiery venom, and "mehophep,"
flying. But, although Christian theology has always connected both
(Leviathan and saraph mehophep) with the devil, the expressions are
metaphorical and have nought to do with the "evil one." But the word
Dracon has become a synonym for the latter. In Bretagne the word
Drouk now signifies "devil," whence, as we are told by Cambry
("Monuments Celtiques," p. 299), the devil's tomb in England,
Draghedanum sepulcrum. In Languedoc the meteoric fires and
will-o'-the-wisps are called Dragg, and in Bretagne Dreag, Wraie (or
wraith), the castle of Drogheda in Ireland meaning the devil's
How is this? Evidently either the
Mesozoic time has to be made to overlap the Quaternary period, or
man must be made the contemporary of the Pterodactyl and the
It does not stand to reason, because the Occultists believe in and
defend ancient wisdom and science, even though winged saurians are
called "flying camels" in the translations of the Zohar, that we
believe as readily in all the stories which the middle ages give us
of such dragons. Pterodactyls and Plesiosauri ceased to exist with
the bulk of the Third Race.
When, therefore, we are gravely asked by Roman Catholic writers to
credit Christopher Scherer's and Father Kircher's cock-and-bull
stories of their having seen with their own eyes living fiery and
flying dragons, respectively in 1619 and 1669, we may be allowed to
regard their assertions as either dreams or fibs.*
Nor shall we regard otherwise than as a
poetical license that other story told of Petrarch, who, while
following one day his Laura in the woods and passing near a cave, is
credited with having found a dragon, whom he forthwith stabbed with
his dagger and killed, thus preventing the monster from devouring
the lady of his heart.**
The ultramontane writers accept the whole series of draconian
stories given by Father Kircher (Edipus AEgyptiacus, "De Genere
Draconum,") quite seriously. According to that Jesuit, he himself
saw a dragon which was killed in 1669 by a Roman peasant, as the
director of the Museo Barberini sent it to him, to take the beast's
likeness, which Father Kircher did and had it published in one of
his in-folios. After this he received a letter from Christopher
Scherer, Prefect of the Canton of Soleure, Switzerland, in which
that official certifies to his having seen himself with his own
eyes, one fine summer night in 1619, a living dragon. Having
remained on his balcony,
"to contemplate the perfect purity of the
firmament," he writes, "I saw a fiery, shining dragon rise from one
of the caves of Mount Pilatus and direct itself rapidly towards
Fluelen to the other end of the lake. Enormous in size, his tail was
still longer and his neck very extended. His head and jaws were
those of a serpent. In flying he emitted on his way numerous sparks
(? !).... I thought at first I was seeing a meteor, but soon
looking more attentively, I was convinced by his flight and the
conformation of his body that I saw a veritable dragon. I am happy
to be thus able to enlighten your Reverence on the very real
existence of those animals";
in dreams, the writer ought to have
added, of long past ages.
** As a convincing proof of the
reality of the fact, a Roman Catholic refers the reader to the
picture of that incident painted by Simon de Sienne, a friend of the
poet, on the portal of the Church Notre Dame du Don at Avignon;
notwithstanding the prohibition of the Sovereign Pontiff, who "would
not allow this triumph of love to be enthroned in the holy place";
and adds: "Time has injured and rubbed out the work of art, but has
not weakened its tradition." De Mirville's "Dragon-Devils" of our
era seem to have no luck, as they disappear most mysteriously from
the museums where they are said to have been. Thus the dragon
embalmed by Ulysses Aldobranda and presented to the Musee du Senat,
either in Naples or Bologna, "was there still in 1700, but is there
no more." (Vol. 2, p. 427, "Pneumatologie.")
We would willingly believe the story had
Petrarch lived in the days of
Atlantis, when such antediluvian
monsters may still have existed. We deny their existence in our
present era. The sea-serpent is one thing, the dragon quite another.
The former is denied by the majority because it exists and lives in
the very depths of the ocean, is very scarce, and rises to the
surface only when compelled, perhaps, by hunger.
Thus keeping invisible, it may exist and
still be denied. But if there was such a thing as a dragon of the
above description, how could it have ever escaped detection? It is a
creature contemporary with
the earliest Fifth Race, and exists no
The reader may inquire why we speak of dragons at all? We answer:
firstly, because the knowledge of such animals is a proof of the
enormous antiquity of the human race; and secondly, to show the
difference between the zoological real meaning of the words
"dragon," "Naga," and "Serpent," and the metaphorical one, when used
symbolically. The profane reader, who knows nothing of the mystery
language, is likely, whenever he finds one of these words mentioned,
to accept it literally. Hence, the quid pro quos and unjust
accusations. A couple of instances will suffice.
Sed et serpens? aye: but what was the nature of the serpent? Mystics
intuitionally see in the serpent of Genesis an animal emblem and a
high spiritual essence: a cosmic force superintelligent, a "great
fallen light," a spirit sidereal, aerial and tellurian at the same
time, "whose influence circumambulates the globe (qui circumambulat
terram), as a Christian fanatic of the dead-letter (de Mirville) has
it, and which only manifested itself under the physical emblem,
which was the most convenient "with respect to its moral and
intellectual coils": i.e. under the ophidian form.
But what will Christians make of the Brazen Serpent, the "DIVINE
HEALER," if the serpent is to be regarded as the emblem of cunning
and evil? The "Evil One" itself? How can the line of demarcation
ever be settled, when it is traced arbitrarily in a sectarian
theological spirit. For, if the followers of the Roman Church are
taught that Mercury and AEsculapius, or Asclepios, who
are, in truth, one, are "devils and sons of devils," and the wand
and serpent of the latter were "the devil's wand"; how about the
"brazen serpent" of Moses?
Every scholar knows that both the
heathen wand and the Jewish "serpent" are one and the same, namely,
the Caduceus of Mercury, son of APOLLO-PYTHON. It is easy to
comprehend why the Jews adopted the ophidian shape for their
"seducer." With them it was purely physiological and phallic; and no
amount of casuistical reasoning on the part of
the Roman Catholic
Church can give it another meaning, once that the mystery language
is well studied, and that the Hebrew scrolls are read numerically.
The Occultists know that the serpent,
Naga, and the dragon have each a septenary meaning; that
the Sun, for instance, was the astronomical and cosmic emblem of the
two contrasted lights, and the two serpents of the Gnostics, the
good and the evil one; they also know that, when generalized, the
conclusions of both science and theology present two most ridiculous
For, when the former tells us that it is
sufficient to trace the legends of the serpents to their primal
source, the astrological legend, and to meditate seriously on the
Sun, conqueror of Python, and the celestial virgin in the Zodiac
forcing back the devouring dragon, if we would have the key of all
the subsequent religious dogmas; it is easy to perceive that,
instead of generalizing, the author simply has his eye on Christian
religion and Revelation.
We call this one extreme. The other we
see in this: when, repeating the famous decision of the Council of
Trent, theology seeks to convince the masses that,
"from the fall of
man until the hour of his baptism the devil has full power over him,
and possesses him by right (diabolum dominationem et potestatem
super homines habere et jure cos possidere)."
To this Occult philosophy
answers: Prove first the existence of the devil as an entity, and
then we may believe in such congenital possession. A very small
amount of observation and knowledge of human nature may be
sufficient to prove the fallacy of this theological dogma.
Had SATAN any reality, in the objective
or even subjective world (in the ecclesiastical sense), it is the
poor devil who would find himself chronically obsessed and even
possessed by the wicked -- hence by the bulk of mankind. It is
humanity itself, and especially the clergy, headed by the haughty,
intolerant Roman Church, which have
begotten, given birth to, and reared in love the evil one; but this
is a digression.
"The whole world of thought is
reproached by the Church with having adored the serpent. The
whole of humanity 'incensed and at the same time stoned it.' The
Zend Avesta speaks of it as the Kings and Vedas do, as the Edda
and the Bible... Everywhere the sacred serpent, the naga, and
its shrine and its priest; in Rome it is the Vestal who prepares
its meal with the same care as she bestows on the sacred fire.
In Greece, AEsculapius cannot cure without its assistance, and
delegates to it his powers.
Everyone has heard of the famous
Roman embassy sent by the Senate to the god of medicine and its
return with the not less famous serpent, which proceeded of its
own will and by itself toward its Master's temple on one of the
islands of the Tiber. Not a Bacchante that did not wind it (the
serpent) in her hair, not an Augur but questioned it oracularly,
not a necromancer whose tomb is free from its presence! The
Cainites and the Ophites call it Creator, while recognizing, as
Schelling did, that the serpent is 'evil in substance and its
"Sacred Serpents" on p. 432 of de Mirville's "Memoire."
Yes, the author is right, and if one
would have a complete idea of the prestige which the serpent enjoys
to our own day, one ought to study the matter in India and learn all
that is believed about, and still attributed to, the Nagas (Cobras)
in that country; one should also visit the Africans of Whydah, the
Voodoos of Port-au-Prince and Jamaica, the Nagals of Mexico, and the
Pa, or men-serpents of China. But why wonder that the serpent is
"adored" and at the same time cursed, since we know that from the
beginning it was a symbol?
In every ancient language the word
dragon signified what it now does in Chinese -- (lang) i.e., "the
being who excels in intelligence" and in Greek [drakon], or "he who
sees and watches." And is it to the animal of that name that any of
these epithets can apply? Is it not evident, wherever superstition
and oblivion of the primitive meaning may have led savages now, that
the said qualifications were intended to apply to the human
originals, who were symbolized by serpents and dragons?
These "originals" -- called to this day
in China "the Dragons of Wisdom" -- were the first disciples of
the Dhyanis, who were their instructors; in short, the primitive adepts
the Third Race, and later, of the Fourth and Fifth Races. The
name became universal, and no sane man before the Christian era
would ever have confounded the man and the symbol.
The symbol of Chnouphis, or the soul of the world, writes
"is among others that of an enormous
serpent standing on human legs; this reptile, the emblem of the
good genius, is a veritable Agathodaemon. It is often
represented bearded. . . . . That sacred animal, identical with
the serpent of the Ophites, is found engraved on numerous
Gnostic or Basilidean stones . . . . The serpent has various
heads, but is constantly inscribed with the letters [[CHNOUBIS]]."**
Agathodaemon was endowed "with
the knowledge of good and evil," i.e., with divine Wisdom, as
without the former the latter is impossible.***
Repeating Iamblichus, Champollion shows him to be,
"the deity called [Eichton] (or the
fire of the celestial gods -- the great
Thot-Hermes), to whom Hermes Trismegistus attributes the
invention of magic."
This is about as just as though -- a few millenniums hence -- a
fanatic of some future new creed, who was bent on glorifying his
religion at the expense of ancient Christianity, were to say:
"Everywhere the quadruped lamb was adored. The nun placed it,
calling it the Agnus, on her bosom; the priest laid it on the altar.
It figured in every paschal meal, and was glorified loudly in every
temple. And yet the Christians dreaded it and hated it, for they
slew and devoured it. . . ." Heathens, at any rate, do not eat their
sacred symbols. We know of no serpent, or reptile-eaters except in
Christian civilized countries, where they begin with frogs and eels,
and must end with real snakes, as they have begun with lamb and
ended with horse-flesh.
** "Pantheon," 3.
*** The solar Chnouphis, or
Agathodaemon, is the Christos of the Gnostics, as every scholar
knows. He is intimately connected with the seven sons of Sophia
(Wisdom), the seven sons of Aditi (universal Wisdom), her eighth
being Marttanda, the Sun, which seven are the seven planetary
regents or genii. Therefore Chnouphis was the spiritual Sun of
Enlightenment, of Wisdom, hence the patron of all the Egyptian
Initiates, as Bel-Merodach (or Bel-Belitanus) became later with the
**** Hermes, or rather Thot, was
a generic name. Abul Teda shows in "Historia Anti-Islamitica" five
Hermes, and the names of Hermes, Nebo, Thot were given respectively
in various countries to great Initiates. Thus Nebo, the son of
Merodach and Zarpanitu (whom Herodotus calls Zeus-Belos), gave his
name to all the great prophets, seers and Initiates. They were all
"serpents of Wisdom," as connected with the Sun astronomically, and
with Wisdom spiritually.
The "invention of magic!" A strange term to use, as though the
unveiling of the eternal and actual mysteries of nature could be
invented! As well attribute, millenniums hence, the invention
instead of the discovery of radiant matter to Prof. Crookes.
Hermes was not the inventor, or even the discoverer, for, as said in
the foot-note, Thot-Hermes is a generic name, as is Enoch
(Enoichion, the "inner, spiritual eye"), Nebo, the
prophet and seer, etc. It is not the proper name of any one living
man, but a generic title of many adepts.
Their connection in symbolic allegories
with the serpent is due to their enlightenment by the solar and
planetary gods during the earliest intellectual Race, the Third.
They are all the representative patrons
of the Secret Wisdom.
Asclepios is the son of the Sun-god Apollo --
and he is Mercury;
Nebo is the son of Bel-Merodach;
the great Rishi, is the son of Vivisvat -- the Sun or Surya, etc.,
And while, astronomically, the Nagas along with the Rishis, the
Gandharvas, Apsarasas, Gramanis (or Yakshas, minor gods) Yatudhanas
and Devas, are the Sun's attendants throughout the twelve solar
months; in theogony, and also in anthropological evolution, they are
gods and men -- when incarnated in the nether world.
Let the reader be reminded, in this
connection, of the fact that Apollonius met in Kashmir Buddhist Nagas -- which are neither serpents zoologically, nor yet the Nagas
ethnologically, but "wise men."
The Bible, from Genesis to Revelations, is but a series of
historical records of the great struggle between white and black
Magic, between the Adepts of the right path, the Prophets, and those
of the left, the Levites, the clergy of the brutal masses. Even the
students of Occultism, though some of them have more archaic MSS.
and direct teaching to rely upon, find it difficult to draw a line
of demarcation between the Sodales of the Right Path and those
The great schism that arose between the
sons of the Fourth Race, as soon as the first Temples and Halls of
Initiation had been erected under the guidance of "the Sons of
is allegorized in the Sons of Jacob. That there were two schools of
Magic, and that the orthodox Levites did not belong to the holy one,
is shown in the words pronounced by the dying Jacob. And here it may
be well to quote a few sentences from "Isis Unveiled."
The dying Jacob thus describes his sons:
"Dan," he says, "shall be a serpent
by the way, an adder in the path, that biteth the horse-heels,
so that his rider shall fall backwards (i.e., he will teach
candidates black magic) . . . . I have waited for thy salvation,
Of Simeon and Levi the patriarch remarks
"... are brethren; instruments of
cruelty are in their habitations. O my soul, come not thou into
their secret; unto their assembly."*
Now in the original, the words "their
secret" really are "their SOD."**
And Sod was the name for the great
mysteries of Baal, Adonis and Bacchus, who were all sun-gods and had
serpents for symbols. The Kabalists explain the allegory of the
fiery serpents by saying that this was the name given to the tribe
of Levi, to all the Levites, in short, and that Moses was the
of the Sodales.***
It is to the mysteries that the original meaning of the
"Dragon-Slayers" has to be traced, and the question is fully treated
Meanwhile it follows that, if Moses was the chief of the Mysteries,
he was the Hierophant thereof, and further, if, at the same time, we
find the prophets thundering against the "abominations" of the
people of Israel, that there were two schools. "Fiery serpents" was,
then, simply the epithet given to the Levites of the priestly caste,
after they had departed from the good law, the traditional teachings
of Moses: and to all those who followed Black Magic.
Isaiah, when referring to the
"rebellious children" who will have to carry their riches into the
land whence come "the viper and fiery flying serpent" (xxx. 6), or
Chaldea and Egypt, whose Initiates had already greatly degenerated
in his day (700 B.C.), meant the sorcerers of those lands.****
"Genesis," ch. xlix.
** Dunlap, in his introduction
to "Sod, the Mysteries of Adonis," explains the word "Sod" as
arcanum, religious mystery, on the authority of Schindler's "Penteglott."
"The secret of the Lord is with them that fear him," says Psalm
xxv., 14. This is a mistranslation of the Christians, for it ought
to read "Sod Ihoh (the mysteries of Ihoh) are for those who fear
him" (Dunlap, "Mysteries of Adonis," xi). "Al (El) is terrible in
the great Sod of the Kadeshim (the priests, the holy, the
Initiated), Psalm lxxxix, 7" (ibid.). The Kadeshim were very far
from holy. (Vide Part II., "The Holy of Holies.")
*** "The members of the
priest-Colleges were called Sodales," says Freund's "Latin Lexicon"
(iv. 448). "Sodalities were constituted in the Idaean Mysteries of
the MIGHTY MOTHER," writes Cicero in de Senectute. ("Mysteries of
**** The priests of Baal who
jumped over the fires. But this was a Hebrew term and a local one. "Saraph"
-- "fiery or flaming venom."
But these must be carefully
distinguished from the "Fiery Dragons of Wisdom" and the "Sons of
the Fire Mist."
In the "Great Book of the Mysteries" we are told that:
"Seven Lords created Seven men;
three Lords (Dhyan Chohans or Pitris) were holy and good, four
less heavenly and full of passion... The chhayas (phantoms) of
the Fathers were as they."
This accounts for the differences in
human nature, which is divided into seven gradations of good and
evil. There were seven tabernacles ready to be inhabited by Monads
under seven different Karmic conditions.
The Commentaries explain on this basis
the easy spread of evil, as soon as the human Forms had become real
men. Some ancient philosophers ignored the seven in their genetical
accounts and gave only four. Thus the Mexican local Genesis has
"four good men" described as the four real ancestors of the human
race, "who were neither begotten by the gods nor born of woman"; but
whose creation was a wonder wrought by the creative Powers, and who
were made only after "three attempts at manufacturing men had
The Egyptians had in their theology only
"four sons of God," whereas in Pymander seven are given -- thus
avoiding any mention of the evil nature of man; though when Seth
from a god sank into Set-Typhon, he began to be called "the seventh
Whence probably arose the belief that
"the seventh son of the seventh son" is always a natural-born
magician, though, at first, only a sorcerer was meant. APAP, the
serpent symbolizing evil, is slain by Aker, Set's serpent;*
therefore Set-Typhon could not be that evil.
In the "Book
of the Dead" it is commanded (v. 13) that chapter clxiii.
should be read "in the presence of a serpent on two legs," which
means a high Initiate, a Hierophant, for the discus and ram's horns**
that adorn his "serpent's" head in the hieroglyphics of the title of
the said chapter denote this.
Over the "serpent" are represented the
two mystic eyes of Ammon,***
the hidden "mystery god." This passage corroborates our assertion,
and shows what the word "serpent" meant in antiquity.
But as to the Nagals and Nargals, whence came the
similarity of names between the Indian Nagas and the American Nagals?
"The Nargal was the Chaldean and
Assyrian chief of the Magi (Rab-Mag), and the Nagal was the
chief sorcerer of the Mexican Indians. Both derive their names
from Nergal-Serezer, the Assyrian god, and the Hindu Nagas. Both
have the same faculties and the power to have an attendant
daemon, with whom they identify themselves completely.
The Chaldean and Assyrian Nargal
kept his daemon, in the shape of some animal considered sacred,
inside the temple; the Indian Nagal keeps his wherever he can --
in the neighbouring lake, or wood, or in the house in the shape
of some household animal."****
"Book of the Dead" xxxix.
** The same ram's horns are
found on the heads of Moses which were on some old medals seen by
the writer in Palestine, one of which is in her possession. The
horns, made to form part of the shining aureole on the statue of
Moses in Rome (Michael Angelo), are vertical instead of being bent
down to the ears, but the emblem is the same; hence the Brazen
*** But see Harris's "Magic
Papyrus" No. v.; and the ram-headed Ammon manufacturing men on a
**** Brasseur de Bourbourg: "Mexique,"
pp. 135 and 574.
Such similarity cannot be attributed to
coincidence. A new world is discovered, and we find that, for our
forefathers of the Fourth Race, it was already an old one. That
Arjuna, Krishna's companion and chela, is said to have descended
into Patala, the "antipodes," and therein married Ulupi,*
a Naga (or Nagini
rather), the daughter of the king of the Nagas, Kauravya.**
Ulupi has an entirely Atlantean ring about it. Like Atlantis, it is
neither a Greek nor a Sanskrit name, but reminds one of Mexican
** "Mahabharata," Adiparva,
Sloka, 7788, 7789. The "Bhagavata Purana," ix., xx., 31, as
explained by Sridhera, the commentator, makes Ulupi the daughter of
the king of Manipura; but the late Pundit Dayanand Saraswati,
certainly the greatest Sanskrit and Puranic authority in India on
such questions, personally corroborated that Ulupi was daughter of
the king of the Nagas at Patala, or America, 5000 years ago, and
that the Nagas were Initiates.
And now it may be hoped the full meaning
of the serpent emblem is proven. It is neither that of evil, nor,
least of all, that of the devil; but is , indeed, the [SEMES EILAM
ABRASAX] ("the eternal Sun-Abrasax"), the central spiritual sun of
all the Kabalists, represented in some diagrams by the circle of
And here, again, we may quote from our earlier volumes and enter
into further explanations.
"From this region of unfathomable
depth (Bythos, Aditi, Shekinah, the veil of the unknown) issues
forth a circle formed of spirals. This is Tiphereth; which, in
the language of symbolism, means a grand cycle, composed of
Coiled within, so as to follow the
spirals, lies the serpent -- emblem of Wisdom and Eternity --
the dual Androgyne; the cycle representing Ennoia, or the divine
mind (a power which does not create but which must assimilate),
and the serpent, the Agathodaemon, the Ophis, the Shadow of the
Light (non-eternal, yet the greatest divine light on our plane).
Both were the Logoi of the Ophites:
or the Unity as Logos manifesting itself as a double principle
of Good and Evil."
Were it light alone, inactive and
absolute, the human mind could not appreciate nor even realise it.
Shadow is that which enables light to manifest itself, and gives it
objective reality. Therefore, shadow is not evil, but is the
necessary and indispensable corollary which completes Light or Good:
it is its creator on Earth.
According to the views of the Gnostics, these two principles are
immutable Light and Shadow, Good and Evil being virtually one and
having existed through all eternity, as they will ever continue to
exist so long as there are manifested worlds.
This symbol accounts for the adoration by this sect of the Serpent,
as the Saviour, coiled either around the sacramental loaf, or a Tau,
the phallic emblem. As a Unity, Ennoia and Ophis are the Logos.
When separated, one is the Tree of Life
(spiritual), the other, the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.
Therefore, we find Ophis urging the first human couple -- the
material production of Ilda-Baoth, but which owed its spiritual
principle to Sophia-Achamoth -- to eat of the forbidden fruit,
although Ophis represents divine Wisdom.
The serpent, the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, and the Tree of
Life, are all symbols transplanted from the soil of India. The Arasa-Maram, the banyan tree, so sacred with the Hindus (since
Vishnu during one of his incarnations, reposed under its mighty
shade and there taught human philosophy and sciences), is called the
Tree of Knowledge and the Tree of Life. Under the protecting foliage
of this king of the forests, the Gurus teach their pupils their
first lessons on immortality and initiate them into the mysteries of
life and death.
The Java-Aleim of the Sacerdotal College
are said, in the Chaldean tradition, to have taught the sons of men
to become like one of them. To the present day Foh-tchou,*
who lives in his Foh-Maeyu, or temple of Buddha, on the top of the "Kouin-long-sang,"**
the great mountain, produces his greatest religious miracles under a
tree called in Chinese Sung-Ming-Shu, or the Tree of Knowledge and
the Tree of Life, for ignorance is death, and knowledge alone gives
immortality. This marvellous display takes place every three years,
when an immense concourse of Chinese Buddhists assembles in
pilgrimage at the holy place.
Now it may become comprehensible why the earliest Initiates and
Adepts, or the "Wise Men," for whom it is claimed that they were
initiated into the mysteries of nature by the UNIVERSAL MIND,
represented by the highest angels, were named the "Serpents of
Wisdom" and "Dragons;" as also how the first physiologically
complete couples -- after being initiated into the mystery of human
creation through Ophis, the manifested Logos and the androgyne, by
eating of the fruit of knowledge -- gradually began to be accused by
the material spirit of posterity of having committed Sin, of having
disobeyed the "Lord God," and of having been tempted by the Serpent.
So little have the first Christians (who despoiled the Jews of their
Bible) understood the first four chapters of Genesis in their
esoteric meaning, that they never perceived that not only was no sin
intended in this disobedience, but that actually the "Serpent" was
"the Lord God" himself, who, as the Ophis, the Logos, or the bearer
of divine creative wisdom, taught mankind to become creators in
Foh-tchou, literally, in Chinese meaning Buddha's lord, or the
teacher of the doctrines of Buddha-Foh.
** This mountain is situated
south-west of China, almost between China and Tibet.
*** Let the reader be reminded
that in the Zohar, and also in all the Kabalistic works, it is
maintained that "Metatron united to Shekinah" (or Shekinah as the
veil (grace) of Ain-Soph), representing the Logos, is that very Tree
of Knowledge; while Shamael -- the dark aspect of the Logos --
occupies only the rind of that tree, and has the knowledge of EVIL
alone. As Lacour, who saw in the scene of the Fall (chap. iii.,
Genesis) an incident pertaining to Egyptian Initiation, says: --
"The Tree of the Divination, or of the Knowledge of Good and Evil... is the science of Tzyphon, the genius of doubt, Tzy to teach,
and phon, doubt. Tzyphon is one of the Aleim; we shall see him
presently under the name of Nach, the tempter" (Les OEloim, Vol.
II., p. 218). He is now known to the symbologists under the name
They never realized that the Cross was
an evolution from the "tree and the serpent," and thus became the
salvation of mankind. By this it would become the very first
fundamental symbol of Creative cause, applying to geometry, to
numbers, to astronomy, to measure and to animal reproduction.
According to the Kabala the curse on man came with the formation of
The circle was separated from its diameter line.
"From the possession of the double
principle in one, that is the Androgyne condition, the
separation of the dual principle was made, presenting two
opposites, whose destiny it was, for ever after, to seek reunion
into the original one condition. The curse was this, viz.: that
nature, impelling the search, evaded the desired result by the
production of a new being, distinct from that reunion or oneness
desired, by which the natural longing to recover a lost state
was and is for ever being cheated. It is by this tantalizing
process of a continued curse that Nature lives."**
(Vide "Cross and Circle," Part
This is the view taken and adopted by all the Church Fathers, but it
is not the real esoteric teaching. The curse did not begin with the
formation of either man or woman, for their separation was a natural
sequence of evolution, but for breaking the law (See supra).
** "By which (human) nature
lives," not even the animal -- but the misguided, sensual and
vicious nature, which men, not nature, created.
The allegory of Adam being driven away
from the "Tree of Life" means, esoterically, that the newly
separated Race abused and dragged the mystery of Life down into the
region of animalism and bestiality. For, as the Zohar shows, that
Matronethah (Shekinah, the wife of Metatron symbolically) "is the
way to the great Tree of Life, the Mighty Tree," and Shekinah is
As explained: This Tree reaches the
heavenly vale and is hidden between three mountains (the upper triad
of principles, in man). From these three mountains, the Tree ascends
above (the adept's knowledge aspires heavenward) and then redescends
below (into the adept's Ego on Earth).
This Tree is revealed in the day time
and is hidden during the night, i.e., revealed to an enlightened
mind and hidden to Ignorance, which is night. (See Zohar I., 172, a
"The Tree of the Knowledge of the Good and the Evil grows
from the roots of the Tree of Life." (Comm.)
But then also:
"In the Kabala it is plainly to be
found that "the 'Tree of Life' was the ansated cross in its
sexual aspect, and that the 'Tree of Knowledge' was the
separation and the coming together again to fulfill the fatal
condition. To display this in numbers the values of the letters
composing the word Otz ( ), tree, are 7 and 9, the seven being
the holy feminine number and the nine the number of the phallic
or male energy.
This ansated cross is the symbol of
the Egyptian female-male, Isis-Osiris, the germinal principle in
all forms, based on the primal manifestation applicable in all
directions and in all senses."
This is the Kabalistic view of the
Western Occultists, and it differs from the more philosophical
Eastern or Aryan views upon this subject.**
"The Source of Measures."
** Vide infra, "The Septenary,"
in Part II.
The separation of the sexes was in the
programme of nature and of natural evolution; and the creative
faculty in male and female was a gift of Divine wisdom. In the truth
of such traditions the whole of antiquity, from the patrician
philosopher to the humblest spiritually inclined plebeian, has
believed. And as we proceed, we may successfully show that the
relative truth of such legends, if not their absolute exactness --
vouched for by such giants of intellect as were Solon, Pythagoras,
Plato, and others -- begins to dawn upon more than one modern
He is perplexed; he stands startled and
confused before proofs that are being daily accumulated before him;
he feels that there is no way of solving the many historical
problems that stare him in the face, unless he begins by accepting
Therefore, in saying that we believe
absolutely in ancient records and universal legends, we need hardly
plead guilty before the impartial observer, for other and far more
learned writers, among those who belong to the modern scientific
school, evidently believe in much that the Occultists do: e.g., in
"Dragons," not only symbolically, but also in their actual existence
at one time.
"It would have indeed been a bold
step for anyone, some thirty years ago, to have thought of
treating the public to a collection of stories ordinarily
reputed fabulous, and of claiming for them the consideration due
to genuine realities, or to have advocated tales, believed to be
time-honoured fictions, as actual facts; and those of the
nursery as being, in many instances, legends, more or less
distorted, descriptive of real beings or events. Nowadays it is
a less hazardous proceeding . . . . . "
Thus opens the introduction to a recent
(1886) and most interesting work by Mr. Charles Gould, called
"Mythical Monsters." He boldly states his belief in most of these
He submits that:
"Many of the so-called mythical
animals, which, throughout long ages and in all nations, have
been the fertile subjects of fiction and fable, come
legitimately within the scope of plain matter-of-fact natural
history; and that they may be considered, not as the outcome of
exuberant fancy, but as creatures which really once existed, and
of which, unfortunately, only imperfect and inaccurate
descriptions have filtered down to us, probably very much
refracted, through the mists of time. . . .
Traditions of creatures once
co-existing with man, some of which are so weird and terrible as
to appear at first sight to be impossible. For me the major part
of those creatures are not chimeras but objects of rational
study. The dragon, in place of being a creature evolved out of
the imagination of an Aryan man by the contemplation of
lightning flashing through the caverns which he tenanted, as is
held by some mythologists, is an animal which once lived and
dragged its ponderous coils and perhaps flew. . . . .
To me the specific existence of the
Unicorn seems not incredible, and in fact, more probable than
that theory which assigns its origin to a lunar myth*
. . .
For my part I doubt the general
derivation of myths from 'the contemplation of the visible
workings of external nature.' It seems to me easier to suppose
that the palsy of time has enfeebled the utterance of these
oft-told tales until their original appearance is almost
unrecognizable, than that uncultured savages should possess
powers of imagination and poetical invention far beyond those
enjoyed by the most instructed nations of the present day; less
hard to believe that these wonderful stories of gods and
demigods, of giants and dwarfs, of dragons and monsters of all
descriptions are transformations than to believe them to be
"The Unicorn: a Mythological Investigation," Robert Brown, jun.,
** Pp. 3 and 4, Introduction to
It is shown by the same geologist that
"successively traced to periods
variously estimated from thirty thousand to one million years...
, co-existed with animals which have long since become extinct
These animals, "weird and terrible,"
were, to give a few instances:
(1) "Of the genus Cidastes,
whose huge bones and vertebrae show them to have attained a
length of nearly two hundred feet... " The remains of such
monsters, no less than ten in number, were seen by Professor
Marsh in the Mauvaises Terres of Colorado, strewn upon the
(2) The Titanosaurus montanus,
reaching fifty or sixty feet in length
(3) the Dinosaurians (in the
Jurassic beds of the Rocky Mountains), of still more gigantic
(4) the Atlanto-Saurus
immanis, a femur of which alone is over six feet in length, and
which would be thus over one hundred feet in length!
But even yet the line has not been
reached, and we hear of the discovery of remains of such titanic
proportions as to possess a thigh-bone over twelve feet in length
(p. 37). Then we read of the monstrous Sivatherium in the Himalayas,
the four-horned stag, as large as an elephant, and exceeding the
latter in height; of the gigantic Megatherium: of colossal flying
lizards, Pterodactyli, with crocodile jaws on a duck's head, etc.,
All these were co-existent with man,
most probably attacked man, as man attacked them; and we are asked
to believe that the said man was no larger then than he is now! Is
it possible to conceive that, surrounded in Nature with such
monstrous creatures, man, unless himself a colossal giant, could
have survived, while all his foes have perished? Is it with his
stone hatchet that he had the best of a Sivatherium or a gigantic
Let us always bear in mind that at least
one great man of science, de Quatrefages, sees no good scientific
reasons why man should not have been "contemporaneous with the
earliest mammalia and go back as far as the Secondary Period."*
"It appears," writes the very
conservative Professor Jukes, "that the flying dragons of
romance had something like a real existence in former ages of
"Does the written history of man,"
the author goes on to ask, "comprising a few thousand years,
embrace the whole course of his intelligent existence? Or have
we in the long mythical eras, extending over hundreds of
thousands of years, and recorded in the chronologies of Chaldea
and China, shadowy mementoes of prehistoric man, handed down by
tradition, and perhaps transported by a few survivors to
existing lands, from others which, like the fabled
Plato, may have been submerged, or the scene of some great
catastrophe which destroyed them with all their civilization."
The few remaining giant animals, such as
elephants, themselves smaller than their ancestors the Mastodons,
and Hippopotami, are the only surviving relics, and tend to
disappear more entirely with every day. Even they have already had a
few pioneers of their future genus, and have decreased in size in
the same proportion as men did.
For the remains of a pigmy elephant were
found (E. Falconeri) in the cave deposits of Malta; and the same
author asserts that they were associated with the remains of pigmy
Hippopotami, the former being "only two feet six inches high; or the
still-existing Hippopotamus (Choeropsis) Liberiensis, which
Milne-Edwards figures as little more than two feet in height."***
Skeptics may smile and denounce our work as full of nonsense or
fairy-tales. But by so doing they only justify the wisdom of the
Chinese philosopher Chuang, who said that,
"the things that men do
know can in no way be compared, numerically speaking, to the things
that are unknown";****
and thus they laugh only at their own ignorance.
"The Human Species," p. 52.
** "Manual of Geology," p. 301.
*** "Recherches sur les
Mammiferes," plate I.
**** Preface to "Wonders by Land
and Sea," (Shan Hai King).