Here Thar Be Monsters!

From the other side of the argument to the other side of the planet, read in over 149 countries and 17 languages. We bring you news and opinion with an IndoTex® flavor. Be sure to check out Radio Far Side. Send thoughts and comments to luap.jkt at gmail, and tell all your friends. Sampai jumpa, y'all.

23.4.11

Pax Romanae

Ah, once again we celebrate that time-honored pagan celebration of Easter.  It began with Maundy Thursday, led into Good Friday, followed by Holy Saturday, and culminates in Easter Sunday.  If you are a Christian, then you have most likely been read (few actually actively read...) the Gospel accounts:

On Thursday, at sundown, Jesus and the Apostles gathered for the Passover meal.  Later, some of them repair to the garden for a walk and some fresh air.  Jesus gets arrested, taken before the Sanhedrin, gets condemned to death, but wait!, let's let the Romans do it so we don't get blamed for killing a major political figure.  So they haul Jesus to Pontius Pilat, who in turn interviews Jesus but doesn't get very far.  So he sends our hero half way across Palestine, to Herod, who plays around with Jesus a bit and then sends him half-way across Palestine again, to let old PP have another go.  Old PP takes our hero out back and has him whipped a little, then puts him up in front of the crowd, who naturally chooses the thieving, murdering liar Barabbas over our hero (a perfect example of democracy in action).  Thus at a loss on what to do with Jesus, PP orders him taken up the hill and crucified at the mob's request.  Finally, by noon on Friday, Jesus is hung out to dry.

That has got to be one of the fastest examples of the Wheels of Justice ever recorded!  In less than 12 hours, Jesus has a couple of trials, is hauled back and forth across Palestine, sees pretty much the entire ruling class of the region, and dies by noon the next day.  Pardon me if I have a problem with this story.  In fact, even the Gospels seem to have a bit of a problem.  Matthew, Luke and Mark pack all the action into one night, but good, old John says it a little different, giving us two days.  Hmmm...and that's the Gospel Truth.  Go read it.

So, we have this little time-line problem going.  But, that's not all...

You see, the story of God-Becomes-Man-Dies-And-Resurrects was ancient even in Jesus' time.  In fact, the story is one of the oldest in Humanity's collection of stories.  By some accounts, this story is well over 10,000 years old.

One example is the Egyptian story of Osiris.  Seems Ossy got into a battle and was hacked into 14 pieces.  His sister/wife Isis collected the pieces, all except for the phallus which disappeared, and reassembled them inside a tree trunk.  The missing phallus was replaced with a magical device that allowed Isis to impregnate herself before she sealed up the tree trunk and threw it in the Nile.  Three days later, Osiris was resurrected in his new trans-human form (with the magical phallus, we presume).

Now the whole bit with tree trunks and three days has a familiar ring to it, que no?  Not to mention the rather thinly veiled renditions of Mary and Jesus in the image of Isis and Horus.

To all this, we add the story of the Roman emperor Constantine.  He was watching the Roman Empire sliding inexorably into the history books, led in part by infighting among dozens of competing religions.  In an effort to quell the bickering and save the empire, he ordered a bunch of religious types into a room in Turkey and told them to come up with something.  Which they did.  It is called the Universal Roman Church, or Roman Catholic.

The council of Nicea blended pieces of several religions into a single amalgam that made everyone happy.  The monotheists had One God.  The polytheists had a Trinity.  The goddess worshipers were given Mary and the Osiris worshipers were given Jesus.  The Sun worshipers were given Sunday and those who just needed a pantheon and ancestor worship were given saints.

None of it really resembled Christianity, which was a whole different beast.  The Christians believed that their guy was the new Fisher King, come to establish the Kingdom of the New Age.  Their religio-political movement was an outcrop on the Essenes, who in turn had blended certain aspects of Judaism and Buddhism.  Their system postulated apotheosis, in which every man could become god through certain practices.

The whole idea of apotheosis is really central to this whole thing.  Certainly, the Buddhists believe in it, and various sects throughout Western history believe in it.  There are hints of it throughout the Old and New Testaments, even as Jesus said 'all this I do, you can do, and more.'  In the US, George Washington is assumed to has undergone apotheosis, and that moment is enshrined on the ceiling of the US capitol dome.  Some scholars argue that Jesus also went through this process, as he began by calling himself the Son of Man, but later changed to the Son of God.  Go read it.  I'm not making this up.

At any rate, Constantine (remember him?) had hit on a solution to the ills of the Roman Empire.  Now, the emperor was truly the center of the official religion, and that religion had something for everyone.  No matter what your parental belief system was, you could find the core beliefs all tied up in a neat little box in this Universal Church.

Did it work?  Well, the Catholic Church is the richest, most powerful organization on Earth...right now.  It is the single largest land owner, and the leaders of the world still come to the Emperor (now called Pope) to get their blessing and approval.  Roman Law is the core of most legal systems on Earth.  Pretty much all corporations are given their legal status as 'persons' through a complex and very well hidden link to the Vatican.  In fact, the Vatican is the only sovereign religious headquarters on Earth.  And it has survived and perpetuated the Roman Empire throughout the world for 2,000 years.

Don't know about you, but that sounds pretty darned successful to me.  In fact, few seem to realize it, but the Godfather series of books and films were really a documentary.  I avoided watching any of the films until last year.  Despite their fame and adulation, I had no desire to see them.  I knew what was in them.  I had seen it first-hand.  The scene where Michael gets absolution from the future pope...well, there you go.

The banking ills of the world are laid at the feet of the Vatican.  Its bank is the root of all evil.  All roads lead to Rome.  That's why no matter what horrible things the Church leaders do, the institution is untouchable.  No major event on Earth occurs without the blessing and approval of the Vatican.

Oh, and who killed JFK?  The Vatican, of course.  JFK signed an Executive Order creating a new, independent US currency based on silver.  Look it up.  He died not long after that.  How dare a Catholic stand up to the secular power of the Holy Roman Empire?  From that point forward, we were given the Pax Americana.  Now why do you think they'd use a 2,000 year old dead language for that term, and run everything out of a city in Virginia that is up to its gills in Graeco-Roman architecture?

And trust me, when the American Empire, and the Pax Americana falls into dust, the Romans will still be there.

Those who don't study history are doomed to repeat it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to leave your own view of The Far Side.