The Circumference of Humanity

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Religion and Spirituality  |  House: Booksie Classic
A brief history of humanity,religion,empires, science and spiritual awakening.

Submitted: November 26, 2011

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Submitted: November 26, 2011

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THE CIRCUMFERENCE OF HUMANITY

 

 

 

 

 

In the beginning.....

 

Long ago at an unknown location out with space and time was nothingness. Nothing more or nothing less and what lay in between was a sense of emptiness, but how could this possibly be without thought to perceive it, and what was it?

 

And with this first thought came into being the creation of everything known and unknown. And this process we call creation the expanding universe forever reaching out, experimenting, colliding, creating, destroying this continuous process of searching for the answers to the original question, who am I? what am I? what is my purpose? These are meaningless questions for nothingness yet there must of been a sense of something-ness for a thought to come into being. And does this thought exists? Well yes otherwise we wouldn’t be here thinking of it. Maybe this thought has more to do with life and us and nothingness does not care or share our concerns. It knows in the beginning there was nothingness and at the end there will be nothingness. Sounds pretty bleak eh. Well, don’t you worry we are only going to concern ourselves with the middle bit which is life the universe and everything.

 

Did you know for instance we are but one universe within another within another and so forth into eternity or so it seems. This I cannot prove of course because humans and science have not reached the parameters of this universe yet. But imagine looking at a dew drop of water hanging from a petal and seeing a world contained within, tiny little creatures swimming and existing. Their world held together by a thin membrane of incredible force hanging there waiting for the inevitable drop. But before that happens take another look this time through the lens of a microscope. Wow. Now you will see a whole myriad of creatures big and small whole ecosystems of plankton and matter floating in a chemical soup contained and protected by gravity, yet at the same time being pulled towards the earth to it’s own end by gravity. Now if we get our electron microscope out we can see deeper into inner space, the atomic structure of this new strange world. Not unlike our own solar system atoms like planets, spin to their own frequencies attracted to larger bodies like our sun which pulls them in and sends them away but when they collide, bang! energy is released. And so creates a universe. One that can exist within a drop of water.

 

Now imagine all those drops of water as one, do they form an ocean or a universe?

 

We are but one universe amongst many sharing and creating our own space like the multitude of galaxies that share the same universe as us. We almost seem independent of each other but the forces we generate with each spin of the galaxy is sure to have effect. It certainly does have effect within the confines of our own galaxy with new planets being born and old stars dying or are they being reborn when they turn super nova. The  light and energy given off  travels far illuminating everything in it’s path, but like with knowledge if you gets too close to the truth you will be consumed. The energy from a super nova is immense and after the planet has burnt out it sometimes leaves a deep black hole, a tear in space  and time where nothing escapes not even light. Now imagine the universe as a big soapy bubble with a black hole on one side and another on the opposite side, and where they join in theory would exist a worm hole. It’s a bit like putting a skewer through a balloon, the balloon doesn’t burst. 

 

Likewise the universe expands and contracts, accommodating all the movements and variations, the countless tiny calculations that re-address the balance and maintains the universe as a whole. But if ever that bubble was to burst, is but one theory another is the universe would expand so far then collapse in on it’s self thus creating a big bang. I prefer this theory a self creating universe perpetually expanding and contracting, yin and yang.  

 

 

Mathematics of thought

 

The universe is immense and men try to calculate it’s size using the language of mathematics but his knowledge is limited to what makes sense. Like all new languages they have to be learned the various dialects and different spellings or possible meanings all the little nuances and indicators will have to be learned. And yes humanity is learning the more they find out the more questions they have and some of those questions are pretty big ones. Like, does god exist?

 

We’ll get back to that one later but for now thinking of the incalculable  mathematical possibilities contained within the universe, anything is possible. Anything you can think of or imagine is within the realms of the universe and has a real probability of being true no matter how remote the possibility. It exists as a number in order of preference of being more likely true. You may prefer to think of it as a thought or idea but once thought off it exists in it’s own right somewhere lost in the yet to be discovered realms of possibility. 

All that can be imagined is possible in this universe.

 

What is thought? This sense of awareness, seeing without knowing for sure, brief moments of enlightenment, flashes of inspiration. Who knows you decide. For me thought is a powerful tool that can exist beyond it’s original creator your brain. To some thought is but the result of electrical and chemical brain activity between the synapses and nerve endings. Constantly sending little electrical impulses with instructions for this and that making connections and setting up networks. This would explain simple thoughts basic instructions on how to live just as all creatures function quite happily living their lives if left in peace. But it doesn’t convince me when it come to deeper thought this sense of self awareness we all seem to have. What is this consciousness this prevailing awareness of something other than the self, something it can compare itself to, something to analyze and dissect. Surely these would be useless thoughts in our quest for survival so why are we so concerned with the ego and the journey of self discovery.

 

To my thinking thought is energy, instantaneous bursts of pure thought constantly on the move energized like electrons in the atom. Thoughts come thoughts go some stay and evolve while others dissolve. It’s a medley of activity in one’s brain with all those electrical pulses and neuron  connections going off all the time. It any wonder we get any relief from our own thinking if it was not for sleep but even then, dreams involve electrical activity. Our brains are like incredible super computers better than our PCs at home for our brains work faster than any processor and access information in imaginative ways that go far beyond the capabilities of ordinary computers. Of course computers can count and calculate much faster than the ordinary human but the ex-ordinary human has been known to calculate complex sums as fast as a calculator. And after all it was humans who imagined and designed the computer for their own needs, a super calculator.

 

Using the language of maths man plots a path into his great calculator and seeks an answer to his question,” how big is the universe?” And the calculator is still calculating but any human can tell you that it is boundless and constantly changing it goes on forever as far as the eye can see in our imaginations. A computer can only work with the directives put in to it but our super computers (brains) are influenced by so many stimuli. Emotions, feelings, hunger, toxins, oxygen, water, the moon, the sun everything external and internal affects our thinking and reactions. Our brains are like receivers taking on bits of knowledge putting them together and sending them out again into the collective stream of consciousness. Learning for all and every to use and enhance their understanding  of life and of their special place within the universe. Knowledge can be plucked from the air in a moment of enlightenment it can also be learned through experience but true knowledge does not require any action, it is about all seeing and knowing.

 

 

Adam and Eve

 

And God said to Adam and Eve ‘I have created this paradise called Eden for your pleasure and you may help yourself to anything apart from the fruit of that apple tree I ask you not to be tempted.’ But would you Adam and Eve it, God set them up for a fall the day Eve got talking to the wily snake that lived in the tree who convinced her all knowledge is free and shouldn’t be hidden or deceived. Tempting Adam with her new found knowledge he takes a bite from the apple but it is not quite ripe and God declares first sin and expels the terrible twins. And so the bite of knowledge was bitter to the taste and hence that day knowledge has struggled to find it’s way as people play safe and follow Gods ways.

 

The story of Adam and Eve has deeper knowledge than the obvious religious meaning. Elements of the story existed long before the creation of judaism or christianity  the tree with the fruit represents the tree of life the fruit being knowledge and the tree being rooted in knowledge joining heaven with earth. The snake is an ancient symbol that represents the eternal universe and time. Sometimes shown coiled with it’s tail in it’s mouth as if devouring itself and shaped as a figure of eight or double loop. The tree of life theme can be found in many ancient cultures and what’s amazing scientists at the moment is the remarkable similarities to their creation stories of the origins of the universe with modern theories on the big bang. It seems our ancient ancestors had all ready worked things out and had ponder these thoughts passing on this valuable information putting it in our psyche and vision to seek out the truth. Truth is the ultimate goal of knowledge to know without seeing to believe without being. Knowledge can be a spiritual awakening free from religious restraints of worship and prayer. No need to go to the house of God when you could be playing in His garden I’m sure he was just waiting for the apple to ripen before he shared with Adam and Adam was just seeing if it was ripe enough to share with God.

 

And now being out in the world Adam and Eve had to make their own way gathering and hunting, procreating and nurturing. It was them against the world if you were to believe in God’s law but god didn’t create humans, nature did. Through subtle manipulation of genetic material, rearranging genes and countless discontinued variations of a theme, humans finally emerged out onto the plains of Africa after many years of evolution. This skinny upright walking, talking ape vulnerable and naked to attack from predators and the ravishes of nature, what was she thinking of. Leaving us to the mercy of her own creations we are physically so inadequate that we shouldn’t of survived the natural selection process, but we did (so far). I think we should feel like honoured guests and marvel at the wonders of nature and all her kind. We can’t run as fast as a cheater or swim as beautiful and easy as a dolphin but nature gave us brains to perceive and imagine all her wonders and to learn from their beautiful and precise designs so as we could mimic her every invention. Nature gave us intelligence or at least the capacity to learn and we take our lead from her whether we know it or not we do her bidding.

 

We think we are in control of our own destinies I hardly think so, we strive for profits and gains to make our lives more comfortable it is what nature has taught us. But to have survived we had to be cooperative with each other to get this far we had to work together, how easily we forget when we are successful and greed and selfishness and competition kicks in. Never has there been a race so cruel and yet benevolent towards each other. We are a strange lot we make ourselves gods and pretend that we are free, but who is really free?

 

We are at the mercy of time and have no control over the divine wether we believe in god or not for such things don’t really matter in the larger scheme of things unless you can trace your ancestry all the way back to the very beginning, the very moment existence came into being.

 

 

Creation Myth

 

And in the darkness before history had awoken upon a new planet spinning around a star in a galaxy yet to be named there landed a rock in a pool and from this rock bled a tiny bacterium that had travelled far and the bacterium tasted the atmosphere and felt the warmth and decided this is good and went forth and multiply and soon covered the surface of this planet changing methane to air. And thus the first miracle occurred and the skies turned blue and the oceans filled with water and life began to breathe and diverse itself from single cell creatures to multi-celled organisms. The collective had begun and from  heterotrophs begat  autotrophs who begat protists who begat amoeba and so forth all the way through to the Cambrian Period where nature invented sex for the now multi-cell creatures to reproduce themselves and the fervor of their activities produced pathogens that would kill off and make room for the next generation to stake their claim. And soon the division between animal and plants would take place giving rise to the worms who came out of the sea and crawled upon the land. And at this time the oceans were filled with the molluscs, the corals and starfishes transforming themselves with limbs and exoskeletal exteriors. And soon in their millions the myriad of arthropods, crustaceans and arachnids were to cover the earth a moving carpet of insect legs they went forth and explored every nook and cranny some taking to the air ruling the skies for millennia to come. And out of this insect society the first rules of social order were being formed with the ant and the bee and the termite. And not forgetting the seas where all life had started new things were afoot with the creation of the first fishes, blobs of jelly floating aimlessly for the next million years or so. And by the time fish had grown a backbone and some had popped their heads above the water and tasted the air and their gills began to work like lungs and their fins grew into webbed feet, these were the first amphibians, they felt tied to the sea but strived for the freedom of the land but could not get far. So nature created the reptiles with waterproof skin and a shelled egg that could contain their young and the terrible lizards soon dominated all the dry land entering a new era of the Triassic Period the dinosaurs had arrived. And over three ages the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods dinosaurs dominated and flourished some becoming bird like other remaining rep-tiling but unknown to them and mostly going unnoticed was a small mammal like creature hardly bigger than a shrew keeping quiet and out of sight waiting for it’s big chance which was soon to come. And as the earth grew cold and some creatures went back to the sea and the others perished on the land and made way for the new generation of warm blooded creatures that now occupied where the king lizards had once been the mammals and the birds now ruled. And over the next 65 million years or so mammals diversified into every ecological niche taking advantage of their wild habitats. And out of this gene pool the first hominids broke rank with our cousins the apes and started on an evolutionary journey lasting 6 to 8 million years to get us here today to our own particular species Homo sapiens sapiens.

 

So let us meet the ancestors, for we are but mere youngsters about 100,000 years old as modern humans go. Just before us and not that different Homo sapiens meaning wise man existed about 1.6 million years ago and then before him was Homo erectus then Homo habilis then about 2 million years ago we had Australopithecus robustus and Australopithecus boisei and their distant cousins Australopithecus africanus and Australopithecus afarenis. Now one of these great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great, great....................................ancestor was a small humanoid primate like creature called Lucy who lived in Africa about 3 million years ago and she is credited with being our great, great, etc auntie. The mother of all humanity? 

 

How far we have come in our quest to be the best that nature has to offer yet we may not be the last in evolutionary advancement far from it for we are still the fragile creatures that came down out of the trees all those millions of years ago still struggling for our survival.

 

 

Wandering the Earth

 

So how did we survive? and why did we leave the relative safety of the forest swinging from branch to branch. It was a long time ago and the world as we know it was covered in trees an endless forest north to south, a temperate climate prevailed and we were safe in our nakedness. One day a group of hominids came to the edge of a great forest and could see beyond an other great forest stretching ahead of theirs. Be it hunger or human curiosity they eventually came down out of the trees and began to explore this new terrain   the savanna. To adapt it was better to walk on two legs than four so as they could stand tall amongst the grass and their brains grew big, bigger than their need at the time but as time concedes they would indeed need this bigger capacity to learn and to survive in this new and open environ. 

 

So for 100,000 years or more we wander the Earth hunting and gathering, learning to speak to one another, we discovered the hidden secrets of fire and how to harness, how to clear the old for the new. We listened to nature and we were told where to go and what to do indeed to survive we had to share the collective knowledge passed on by reciting stories told around the camp fires of old. Stories of hunting  and of following the seasons. Stories of heroes speaking with the nature gods and leading their people to the promise land, the happy hunting grounds.

 

For we were a simple people with simple needs and all the space we would ever need being small in numbers we could roam relatively free and be at peace with nature and ourselves. Imagine walking along a beach in London with a Caribbean climate spear fishing in the warm shallows of what would become the river Thames. Life was good but then we learned to speak in tongues and confused each other with our own ideas and customs. We all seek to be so different yet we are the same, this strange urge of humanity to push ahead this quirk of genetic engineering that says all life must go forth and diversify.

 

So what joker taught us to talk why couldn’t we be more like our Neanderthal  cousins who reputedly use more their telepathic powers of communication, a people of few words. One theory out there is wolfs and dogs taught us how to communicate effectively. Many  a day people would watch the wolves hunt and notice how they worked together as a team calling to each other coordinating their moves and finishing with a kill. But as men watched the wolfs and admire and sometimes stole their prize, wolfs were watching men around their camp fires sometimes getting close enough to steal the meat, an easy meal ticket. And soon the wolves learned to keep close to this new man animal and men learned to make use of this relationship bringing up some of the young wolves as their own. And the wild dogs became more genetically appealing with the help of people selecting the dogs with big puppy eyes and more placid natures,the two formed an inseparable bond that has lasted the test of time. Old faithful friends.

 

And so came a time when some of the people had the urge to set down roots and settle in the one place. A special place that had something special that the people had great use of. Something of value shiny and hard something they could trade and make an easier life for themselves. This special something was a volcanic glass obsidian from which they could make tools and then trade for seashells and flint from Syria and Jordan and all the passing tribes. For these people chose to settle down in one of the earliest known Neolithic settlement in the region of southern Anatolia, modern day Turkey at a place known as Catal Huyuk. This first town founded around 7500 B.C.E located overlooking wheat fields in the Konya Plain between two rivers and facing the twin-coned volcano of Hasan Dag. Right in the middle of a trade route with good  fertile soil around them, the people of Catal Huyuk could make a diverse living for themselves, and so they did for a thousand years or so. And in that time they developed architecture, agriculture, trade, art, religion, and cult. 

 

 

 

First Settlement

 

A maze of mud-brick houses sitting on top of each other arranged like a honeycomb there were no streets or paths people would enter their dwellings from a hole in the roof reaching the interior by ladder. Inside the houses were painted with extensive and varied murals some abstract some figurative the walls were regularly whitewashed and plastered. They buried their dead under the floors and over time the houses built up on the foundations of earlier dwellings there were no public spaces or temples as all the buildings were use for living space accommodating a population of up to 6000 people. An egalitarian society the people had no apparent social classes and little social distinction based on gender as both men and women received equivalent nutrition and apparently had equal social status as was common with Paleolithic cultures. Numerous clay figurines of women have been found alluding to a female cult and worship and also painted images of men with erect phalluses hunting their favorite prey. So the men would often go on hunting trips leaving the women to tend to the wheat and the barley and gather the almonds and pistachios storing them in special bins protected by the female deities and when the men were not hunting they were making heavy industry creating obsidian tools and elaborate pottery some for trade. And when the animals began to get scarce and the wild aurochs had all but disappeared and men spent more and more time at home domesticating animals like sheep and cattle the female deities of the mother goddess began to become less prevalent and so maybe the status of women. And as we know we have had domestic bliss ever since with the woman giving it “why don’t you go out and do some work and leave me to do the real work of looking after house and home”  “Ok then but you had better have my dinner ready when I get back and I might bring some of the boys so you had better make ready some of that barley brew. It’s going to be a long night.”

 

Could it be women accepted their new role knowing that the real power lay within the home the bringing up and education of the next generation. For their children were their hope for a better life, providers of the future for a more secure and lasting life. Continuation of the genetic lines they must be protected so nature created the female of the species the driving force of humanity. They are the more dominant sex, more than capable of doing and planning, stronger in conviction and merciless in action. Could it be nature created women in her own image with all her hopes and aspirations. She certainly gave her a few tricks which have been used to the benefit of us men without our knowing. She organizes the home life and your life too if you let her she sorts the bills and lets you know you will have to work harder she has plans and ambition and drives all around her. And us men, well it’s good to get away and play under the stars pretending to be our ancestors hunting and exploring. But soon Love comes calling and we feel an inexplicable urge to return home.

 

Love the strongest emotion known though you could argue all emotions are strongest but love is the most sought after the most entangled in the human psyche. A lot has been said about love over the years a hell of a lot and even today we still try and understand this crazy emotion. So powerful  you can hardly look it in the eye without feeling completely consumed by it’s alluring presence rendering you into a stupid stupor. I love you.

 

Nature entrusted this powerful tool of attraction with the alluring female of the species with her skill and selective instincts she could attract just about any man she chose unless he was gay. And with the sex, strong hormones and chemicals are released within the brain and nervous system over time forming a strong bond express as the emotion we call Love. And when children arrive the bonds would become stronger and the need for love ever more present. But nature only intended for the  sensation of being in love to last anything from 2 to 7 years depending on how many children the couple had and how young. 

 

 

Love

 

For a nursing mother is vulnerable and needs protection and feeding when taking care of the young it’s a full time occupation and love ensures that the father or fathers would stick around with the one thought on their mind well two then, that he had to provide for his family. And when the spark dies in one or the other in what they call the seven year itch I guess it’s time to move on the children are of a age to fend for themselves and she is sick of the sight of you. No wonder there is so much divorce it has always been this way cause nature intended for you to move on and spread your genes about. But love lingers and is hard to let go and start again so some bonds change with time and become something else a new kind of love based on mutual respect and a recognition of neediness. It may be companionship or built on friendship and can last a lifetime though probably the passion died long ago. There are many forms of love like it got it’s own genetic evolution. The love of a mother for a child a bond that rarely dies the love of the father or a brother the love between sisters and the love for family. It is all around us and if used wisely can enhance and save us from ourselves.

 

That old dependable love thing the glue that sticks us together and makes sure we produce the babies.  And in the animal kingdom too lots of species employ the same techniques. Have you ever wonder what those whales are really singing about apart from life is great and there’s lots of fish here. Albatrosses and flamingos parading their love with intricate dance they sway each other with romance and invest their love in a single egg  that will provide their reason to bond and find a mate for life. Two eagles living in a mountain paradise will stick together and defend each other’s rights, year after year rearing the young creating a dynasty that will last long after they have gone. That desire to go forth and sow your seeds to dominate and be at the top of the ecosystem that genetic drive that propelled us forward, forward in our thinking, forward in our planning. Even today the way we organize ourselves in our societies our social class our different ways and customs all driven by a genetic need to either protect or dominate.

 

And so the birth of civilization was upon us but first a realisation was taking place a revolution of ideas new ways of doing things were already stirring in the minds of the people. And when the villages over spilled and the people began to shout at one another 

“give me some space!” and so streets became wider and the houses bigger and with the division of labour some people becoming richer some poorer. And two classes raised themselves higher than anyone else the King and the priests and all others would align themselves with whom would do them favor. And one king would do business with another king in another kingdom  and if he liked what he saw he may take the lot but mostly they did this through trade and cultural exchange. And soon little city states were popping up all over Mesopotamia and the Delta Valley in Egypt as the population kept on growing so the need for social order and the efficient organizing of resources. Great inventions like the wheel and the first known written language greatly helped propel society at this time of the bronze age. That’s right all they had at their disposal were soft bronze tools yet the Egyptians created their amazing pyramids so precise and set in time to a far away constellation called Draco as it was in about 10,500 B.C. Shaped like a spiral dragon there is a star in it’s tail called Thuban and was well known to the ancients as our north star is to us. For the earth’s axis wobbles from time to time every 26,000 years and this causes the stars to appear out of position but it really us that moved. And the ancients knew this and marked the time of their old pole star passing with their great and incredible buildings of invention reaching for the stars or at least trying to mirror on earth a heavenly vision and reverence for the knowledge of the universe.

 

 

Civilization

 

And as time passed the scribes and priests would be gathering all the knowledge to use to their advantage and kings would become bolder in their campaigns bringing war and terror  upon the neighboring states, creating empires, consuming, spreading and ultimately becoming victims of their own success. For empires are not meant to last, dynasties die out, genetic lines decline and DNA unravels itself. Mind you the Egyptians gave us a good run for our money lasting nearly 3150 years under the rule of the pharaohs. For kings had now become godlike and the temples were universities of learning, learning to run an empire how to control and organize a growing population,how to feed them, to educate, to put to useful purpose. And great advances were made in architecture, art and technology the society was productive and flourished for nearly a thousand years. But as with all empires they have to be paid for in cash by the big man himself the pharaoh. His job something in-between heaven’s banker and a powerful M.D. running a global network of empire building ants. He has to pay the administrators and officials, all the people that get the little things done to the greater good and everything is rosy as long as the grain silos are full and the people have plenty. But 50 years of severe droughts followed by famine can drive a people to distraction and so they lost interest in their pharaoh who wasn’t providing enough and soon once loyal regional states were breaking away on their own and they began battling with each other competing for lands and power until they had split Egypt in two as it was in the beginning, upper and lower. Now in the upper part was one clan based in Thebes and in the lower part were the rulers of Hierakonpolis and as they expanded  their empires a clash was inevitable resulting in the peoples of Thebes getting  the upper hand and re-uniting Egypt in the process. It was the start of the Middle Kingdom renaissance the pharaohs were back in business and times were good the economy was stable and prosperity had returned. But even this middle period only lasted 400 years or so before the ‘asp bites the bum’ so to say. Some great pharaoh had allowed Asiatic settlers into the delta region to provide a sufficient labor force for his mining and ambitious building projects. Contrary to belief these people were not all slaves but were paid for their labor sort of migrant workers. But the great pharaoh’s ambitions combined with some years of inadequate flooding of the river Nile drained the economy and so the decline of the pharaoh rule. The settlers seeing their chance seized the delta region for themselves and forced the central government  to retreat to Thebes where the pharaoh was consider a vassal of the Hyksos rulers who demanded tribute. Nice, give them job make them feel at home and then they take over. So the kings of Thebes found themselves between a hard rock and a hard place with the Hyksos to the north and their nubian allies the Kushites  pushing from the south. 100 years of inaction  followed until the Theban forces were strong enough to take on the ruling Hyksos in what turn out to be a thirty year conflict ending with the eradication and exile of the Hyksos regime from Egypt. It was the birth of the New Kingdom and the pharaohs got even more grander and ambitious with their monuments and empire building. Things were going along smoothly until the pharaoh Amenhotep decided to change his name to Akhenaten in praise of the sun god Aten displacing the old god and cult of Amun. The priests were up in arms society was turned upside down and the pharaoh moved his capital to the middle of the desert. After his death the cult of Aten was abandon like his city and the next three pharaohs went about erasing all mention of Akhenaten heresy but none produced heirs and the empire wavered. Now was the rise of Ramesses II who ascended the throne around 1279 BC and was the most prolific of all the pharaohs building more temples and erecting statues and obelisks he sired more children than any pharaoh before. His reign was long and lasting and many sheltered under the patronage of his success the priests of Amun gaining vast tracts of land and their wealth turning into power and corruption. The third kingdom was faltering by the time of Ramesses XI in 1078 BC. Libyan tribes had moved into the western Delta the priests of Amun were in power in Thebes and Egypt had lost her territories in Syria and Palestine.

 

 

Rise and fall of empire

 

The Libyans took over the Delta and for 200 years slowly moved south until around 727 BC when the Kushite king Piye  invaded northwards taking control of Thebes and eventually the Delta as well. Time was running out  for the pharaohs  as the advancement of other empires infringed upon their culture and way of life. Their neighbors the Assyrians cast their eyes towards an Egyptian prize and started to attack in 671 BC eventually pushing the Kushites all the way back into Nubia they then sacked the temples of Thebes and occupied Memphis. Not wishing to over stay their welcome they left control of Egypt in the hands of some vassal kings and got paid the usual annual tributes whatever the going rate was 20% of income 50%. Whatever it was it was enough to piss one of the appointed vassals who hired some Greek mercenaries and with their help ousted the Assyrians out of Egyptian history. After this event Greek influence was welcome in the city of Naukratis and became known as the home of the Greeks relations and trade was good and both cultures assimilated. All was well for 120 years until the Persian came knocking at the door. And from 525 BC  until 332 BC the Persians all but ruled Egypt as part of their vast empire but for a short blip of 40 years the last in line, the last native royal house of dynastic Egypt ended with the pharaoh Nectanebo II. Ten years later who comes a calling none other than Alexander the Great  the Macedonian wonder kid a military genius  who to get to Egypt he had to quash a rebellion by southern Greek city states take on and sort out his Macedonian northern neighbors before advancing east against the Achaemenid Persian Empire conquering  Anatolia, Syria, Phoenicia, Judea, and Gaza on the way to Egypt. And when he gets there the Persians hand it over to him with little  resistance and no battle. The people rejoice cause they like the Greeks and saw them as liberators but the young Alexander was on a mission to find his true father for his mother Olympias had an adulterous affair and he was born illegitimate and not of pure Macedonian blood. This bothered the young king and it didn’t help that his mother try to cover her tracks by insisting that she had been impregnated by Zeus, the king of the gods as she slept under an oak tree. It seemed Alexander believed her and so one of the first things he does is to visit the desert temple of Zeus Ammon to consult the oracle of his divine parentage. The priests probably thought it better to tell him what he wants to hear and so declare that Zeus was indeed his father and then they told him to go forth and destroy their enemies, the Persians. This he would do but first he built a city at Alexandria that would become the ruling seat of the Ptolemaic dynasty. For three hundred years the Greek pharaohs assimilated well with Egyptian life keeping the customs and festivals, building in the style of Egyptian art, promoting the culture and living the leisurely  life of a god in his palace. One family held sway over Egypt for 300 years descended from Ptolemy one of the seven bodyguards that served under Alexander the Great. All his male descendants took his name while the queens some of whom were their husbands sisters took the names of Cleopatra, Arsinoe or Berenice. The last in the line and most famous was the great Cleopatra VII who knew what she wanted and how to play the politics of the day while charming and seducing her potential allies all in her quest to be Queen of Egypt and Empress of the Roman Empire. But being a family business things don’t always run smoothly especially when you have to share the throne with your 12 year old brother and you are seventeen and married to him. Sibling rivalry was bound to come into play as she tried and assert her power but a failed uprising against her brother Ptolemy XIII forced her into exile with her sister Arsinoe. During this time of exile there was a power struggle in Rome between Julius Caesar and the general Pompey who fled Rome for the sanctuary of Alexandra. But instead of finding sanctuary Pompey was beheaded by the young Ptolemy thinking it would  please Julius Caesar but it had the opposite effect Caesar was enraged and took control of the Egyptian capital. Seeing her chance and using her womanly charms Cleopatra succeeded in seducing the old Julius Caesar and with his backing claimed the throne of Egypt and produced an heir in her eyes that would unite East and West. But with the best laid plans being an emperor of Rome had it’s occupational hazards like assassination and so Caesar fell literally to the ground in a pool of blood. 

 

 

The Moon and She

 

But Cleopatra had another bite of the cherry with Mark Antony and together they hatched a plan for world domination that would be their fall. And the Romans invaded Egypt to rid it of one of their own as Cleopatra faced failure and resigned herself to death not known she would be the last of the pharaohs the end of an era.

 

And that is 3150 years of empire building history how they rise and how they fall adapting to the changes but always vulnerable to nature’s laws when the river didn’t flood or turned to the color of blood when the harvest was devoured by plagues of locusts when illness and disease besiege the people, famine and drought. When times were bad the economy would turn down and the people become restless these were the times empires would falter the many times Egypt was invaded the times she was weak. Just as in nature the weak is preyed upon like disease upon the body the army of white cells must be strong enough to repel. If you were to observe a small lagoon over a millennia and see all the comings and goings the struggle for survival amongst the coral and animals that depend on the reef’s thriving economy. You would see in a sense empire building among the different species and a small change to the environment like temperature would see the retreat or advancement of dominant sorts. It is all inter-connected and dependent on each other it’s either mutual destruction or cooperative balance. Humanity reflects nature in all her glory but where she takes us only she knows. We have been to the moon and sent little probes to Mars investigating the possibility of life, we dream of travel as we look towards the stars hoping and praying for the continuation of the human race. But her goal is only for the advancement of life, is this why she created humanity as she pushes us out  of the cradle of Mother Earth to seek new homes on distant planets, surely that must be our goal with our technical abilities and new found knowledge. But first we must survive the test of time and learn to respect the Great Mother and her lessons in survival for she does not care how far we have come only that we reach our evolutionary peak otherwise she will deem our existence a failure and we will be lost to the history of extinct genetic lines. All species are of equal value to her until they outlive their usefulness but the knowledge of their failure will be put to good use with the next generation. 

 

So why doesn’t she care? Nature is the force of life, the source of life and the giver of life. Her position within the universe is supreme she is every where procreating life on other planets experimenting and evolving new ideas. Her only mission is life itself in what ever form it takes she will nurture and protect and send it forth to the best possible outcome. She is intelligent and inventive she will always find a way to survive her instinct is to go forth and bring colour to the world.

 

When I refer to nature as She I don’t mean to mislead you with the idea that nature exists as a separate entity  like the idea of a godess. Like everything else nature is bound up with the fabric of the universe and has to abide with the laws of creation and destruction when planets move and worlds come crashing down nature can be observe leaving the scene of devastation clinging to a piece of space rock hoping to find relief on some distant world. If nature is a feminine force then she is up against the masculine influences that swing the planets and explode the stars like in the past many cultures consider the moon to be of feminine quality held in place by the masculine forces of gravity she could exert her influence on our tides ebbing and flowing with our emotions. For the moon effects all the water upon the planet and us being made up of 70% or so are affected too. Every time she rises and every time she is full if you let yourself you can feel her effect and notice all around you her influence in others. You may feel energized like with a new moon or full moon you may feel tired and withdrawn after the passing of an old moon if you learn the phases you learn when best to start something new and when to avoid the world outside and it’s crazy lunatics.

 

 

The rise of religion

 

The moon was so important to the ancients that they built great monuments and temples in her honour. Neolithic man went even further erecting the great monolithic calculators of Stonehenge and Callanish engines of invention for the exploration of the heavenly night sky. These great stone temples open to the heavens were partly used for the observation of planetary movements. The moon and sun being close to hand were closely followed and so the people set their calendars to their phases and solstices. This great understanding of the cycles of time the coming together of people to visualize and erect these great monuments must of propelled the whole of society forward at the time when these discoveries were realized. Great inventions are not always apparent except in the eye of the beholder the one who holds the knowledge and interprets the movements of above with that of below they see how each effects the other and thus predict the likely outcome.

 

The astrologers, soothsayers and sham-en have all played their part in the development of human understanding. Furthering our knowledge and fostering our imagination they take to task the great unknown and communicate with the unseen material world a world set apart but part off this world. They are suspended between the two building bridges between us and the spiritual world they hope to gain the secrets of eternal life and are fearful of getting lost, lost to the spirit world. Out of this darkness they would make their predictions some good some bad and some outrageous and to quell their fears they would create gods and new religions some good some bad and some outrageous.

 

To start with gods were simple representations of the spirits that inhabited their world the animals they hunted the moon and the sun the trees the rocks and the sacred pools of fresh water. Our first religions were animalistic and we worship were ever we were erecting totems and painting caves we mapped out the spirit world and did not dare to breach it’s boundaries. Already the creation myths were beginning to form in the minds of the people they sensed that their world had to of been born at some time and exists like a living being who will eventually have to die like all living creatures. The thought of impermanence  made the people fearful of the unknown so they set about creating their myths placing themselves within the spirit world easing their fears by appeasing the spirits for if they were happy then the world was a safer place.

With the agricultural revolution reverence for the fertility gods took main stage. These were mainly female deities representations of the mother goddess the provider of life and it was the job of the women to sow the fields and impregnate the soil with the seeds of life. This was the time of the matriarchal societies ones that were based on reverence for the mother  and women had the high status of spiritual equality and society was relatively peaceful over seen by a benevolent force. But society gets restless and begins to grow and when a chief of the clan raises his sword and calls to arms his brothers to fight a foe then the birth of the warrior cast begins so. And so, the big man the king himself becomes a demi-god in the stories told of his mythical victories he is seen as half mortal half godlike the son of god himself perhaps. And soon these leaders of people were to become total godlike and were to be worship as such, the Pharaohs, the Babylonian the Chinese Emperors all descended from heaven itself. In Egypt the pharaoh Akhenaten announced that there was only to be one great god the sun god Aten and all were to worship him and so attempted to move the people from their polytheism faiths to the one monotheism. This early experiment in ethical monotheism did not last for the people were reluctant to give up the old gods a problem many other religions would encounter. But the idea of just one god was a powerful one and it persisted through the creation of Judaism and in the east a godless version would enter the world view that of Jainism. And one religion would follow another being born of the same doctrine but disagreeing in their execution and one religious leader would denounce the other saying theirs was the only true god.

 

 

The dominance of religion

 

And soon this monotheistic world would have many gods competing and converting until one rules supreme but that day has never come as none can agree on the true purpose of a god. And religion seems to go from strength to strength coming in waves of devout pretensions one trying to oust the other and from time to time the great teachers are born amongst us their words of truth are turned into lies or at least misunderstood. I don’t think Jesus or Buddha intended for their teachings to be turned into a religion for theirs was word of mouth and not written down at the time only years after their death did the followers begin to write and distort the true meaning of their word. As they say you had to of been there to get the full effect it’s a bit like the difference of listening to your favorite band on CD and going to see them live the closer you get to them through the crowd the more impress you become. And so Jesus (king of the jews) who was a jew and preached mainly Hebrew doctrine with a new twist of compassion and forgiveness main tenants of the buddhist faith which happen to be prevalent at that time, was not actually a Christian. It was his followers that started all that and Buddha who was born a man and lived and died as a man became a god in the eyes of his devoted followers. It is true that he did achieve enlightenment in his lifetime but as he said at the time I cannot tell you how to gain enlightenment that is something you have to find yourself I cannot give it to you. 

 

So religion it seems has led us a merry dance through the ages some enlightening moments some great changes we seem to have a need or maybe an empty void needing filled because we keep cueing up for more and the more bizarre the better. Religions have evolved along with us from the darken primordial days of living in the forest to the celestial brilliance of the golden pyramids to the son of god preaching in Palestine and the fervor waves of Islamic conquest and Christian crusades to the 144,000 anointed Jehovah witnesses who are to receive immortal life in heaven as co-rulers  with Christ as the rest of us perish as atonement for our sins. I wonder if anyone has told Jesus that he will be sharing heaven with 144,000 Jehovah witnesses and wouldn’t it be funny if God said to  Him ‘don’t answer the door Son it only those Jehovah witnesses they don’t know that I’ve changed my name to Bob.’

 

So with so many religions in the world they can’t all be right heaven seems to be a busy place these days with souls cueing until the end of days. And the end of days or day of judgement is something a lot them eagerly await the pu


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