Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

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yakovzutolmai
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

Baley wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 3:37 am Karia the Bethlehemite
The current "hunch" I'm going with in my overall hypothesis is as follows:

Ptolemy Menneus is an Assyrian/Seleucid (grandmother is Cleopatra Thea) who claims the title Ptolemy because Tigranes the Great will not allow him to remain as Philip and maintain a claim to Antioch, meanwhile the Ptolemys have lost their position to Rome via the will of Ptolemy X. Thus, my guess (looser than a hypothesis) is that Menneus is engaging in a moonshot where he hoped initially to make a claim for Egypt.

I imagine his children via Alexandra the Hasmonean are "Cleopatra and Cleopatros", a legacy of his positioning himself as "Ptolemy". Cleopatra being "Cleopatra of Jerusalem" who married Herod, and Cleopatros -> QLPTRS -> QTRS -> Cantheras being Simon the High Priest.

If Mariamne Boethus is Pege, then who is Karia?

My firmer hunch is that Mariamne is younger than Josephus implies, and that Cleopatra and Cantheras are both just starting to have children by 27-23 BC.

If Simon Boethus is High Priest of Israel, perhaps he married the Davidic princess of Bethlehem. Mariamne being the result. This would certainly raise her profile. The stories of Anne and Elizabeth both derive from the Old Testament and obviously aren't history.

It also explains the gospel geneaologies. It isn't Jesus who is of Bethlehem, but Mary herself. Likewise, it isn't Joseph and Mary who flee to Alexandria. It's Simon and Cleopatra (because Pacorus invades Chalcis ca. 40 BCE).
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Baley
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by Baley »

It seems to me that religions and mythologies never evolve in a vacuum or ex nihilo. Hence it is only a natural observation that religions share some concepts and outward appearances. There is some reciprocacy but that doesn't mean that all (Eastern) religions derive from a universal root or ur-theology. Not every tower is an axis mundi. Not every female is a moon goddess. I would probably agree with Parpola's critics.
yakovzutolmai
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

Pege is presented as the new Juno, and mother of Christ by the "Persian" account recorded by J. Africanus.
You have well said, She has an artificer [in espousal]; but by that espousal she does not bear an artificer on an equality with herself. For this artificer who is born, the son of the chief artificer, framed by his excellent skill the roof of the third heavens, and established by his word this lower world, with its threefold sphere of habitation.
The tower/pillar:
And when these things were said, the roof was opened, and a bright star descended and stood above the pillar of Pege, and a voice was heard to this effect: Sovereign Pege, the mighty Son has sent me to make the announcement to you, and at the same time to do you service in parturition, designing blameless nuptials with you, O mother of the chief of all ranks of being, bride of the triune Deity. And the child begotten by extraordinary generation is called the Beginning and the End,—the beginning of salvation, and the end of perdition.
Interesting, the unapologetic integration of trinitarian language into the oriental pagan/mysticism.
And when this word was spoken, all the statues fell upon their faces, that of Pege alone standing, on which also a royal diadem was found placed, having on its upper side a star set in a carbuncle and an emerald. And on its lower side the star rested.

And the king forthwith gave orders to bring in all the interpreters of prodigies, and the sages who were under his dominion. And when all the heralds sped with their proclamations, all these assembled in the temple. And when they saw the star above Pege, and the diadem with the star and the stone, and the statues lying on the floor, they said: O king, a root (offspring) divine and princely has risen, bearing the image of the King of heaven and earth. For Pege-Myria is the daughter of the Bethlehemite Pege. And the diadem is the mark of a king, and the star is a celestial announcement of portents to fall on the earth. Out of Judah has arisen a kingdom which shall subvert all the memorials of the Jews. And the prostration of the gods upon the floor prefigured the end of their honour. For he who comes, being of more ancient dignity, shall displace all the recent. Now therefore, O king, send to Jerusalem. For you will find the Christ of the Omnipotent God borne in bodily form in the bodily arms of a woman. And the star remained above the statue of Pege, called the Celestial, until the wise men came forth, and then it went with them.
The trinitarians are having Christ displace both the Syrian and Jewish systems. That's perfectly understandable. What's interesting is the acknowledgment of these systems as being semi-legitimate competitors, which aren't necessarily in error, but which are replaced by Christ. Just as the Law is replaced by Christ, rather than being illegitimate, the oriental gods fall prostrate before Christ. This is all very revealing.
To Myria is given the blessed lot of bearing Pege in Bethlehem, and of conceiving grace of grace. Judaea has seen its bloom, and this country is fading. To Gentiles and aliens, salvation is come; to the wretched, relief is ministered abundantly. With right do women dance, and say, Lady Pege, Spring-bearer, thou mother of the heavenly constellation.
Pege is the mother of Pege-Myria. Myria is the mother of Pege.

Okay, I know what this is. The "Church of the Nativity" in Bethlehem is a cave which was a cultic site for Adonis. Compare to Byblos's river and Anobret.

This Pege/Myria of Bethlehem is Anobret of Bethlehem. "Spring-bearer".
Her name, moreover, is Myria; for she bears in her womb, as in the deep, a vessel of a myriad talents' burden. And as to this title Pege, let it be understood thus: This stream of water sends forth the perennial stream of spirit,—a stream containing but a single fish, taken with the hook of Divinity, and sustaining the whole world with its flesh as though it were in the sea.
Compare to Atargatis and Icthys, the sacred ponds at Ashkelon and Edessa. Zebedee the "fisherman".

It seems that Christianity was perceived even by early trinitarians as the culmination of these same Adonis cults. Unfortunately, I can't find much historical content here. Sure, if Mariamne's mother was a Davidic princess from Bethlehem, this could add to her popular allure and connect her to the Anobret? cult in Bethlehem. Unfortunately, the mythical mother of Bethlehem is more than enough to explain the town's presence in the gospel narrative, no historical basis required.
yakovzutolmai
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

Baley wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 5:51 am It seems to me that religions and mythologies never evolve in a vacuum or ex nihilo. Hence it is only a natural observation that religions share some concepts and outward appearances. There is some reciprocacy but that doesn't mean that all (Eastern) religions derive from a universal root or ur-theology. Not every tower is an axis mundi. Not every female is a moon goddess. I would probably agree with Parpola's critics.
Parpola's system really stretches the evidence. However, there is the question of an Assyrian in Shechem finding the worship there familiar enough to relate to, and an Israelite in Nineveh already oriented to the religious system there. It's a question of how open or closed a system is. There was an element in Judaism, obviously, which wanted a very closed system. However, it's not clear that Judaism at large embraced this desire for barriers.
yakovzutolmai
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

Concerning Gnosticism and the tower: rather than describing the symbol of tower, the language of the Aeons-as-towers is replete. So, "The Pillar of Pege" is more likely to refer to a Simonian style "1000 foot tall giant" than a tall building. That's my feeling about this.
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by davidmartin »

The impression this text gives is that Christianity might originally have been designed to integrate with the existing mysteries but if that was ever the intent it didn't catch on, but whatever came later perhaps that was the original intent, unlikely as that might appear. This phase would have had to have been very brief and fleeting i feel with the only survivor being the Jewish element of it
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

davidmartin wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:45 am The impression this text gives is that Christianity might originally have been designed to integrate with the existing mysteries but if that was ever the intent it didn't catch on, but whatever came later perhaps that was the original intent, unlikely as that might appear. This phase would have had to have been very brief and fleeting i feel with the only survivor being the Jewish element of it
My feeling has been that orthodox/trinitarian Christianity is more of an expression of philosophy from Philo of Alexandria, and that it is posing as the "true" Judaism.

The original expression of Christianity was an attempt to assert the esoteric elements of Judaism more openly, and these elements come from the local variant of the regional religious system.

Trinitarian Christianity was saying that, yes Judaism is the truest version of existing mysteries, but that Judaism was only completely true when it purged the pagan and Gnostic elements. The result being Trinitarian Christianity.

In another thread we are discussing whether Moses was a version of Thoth/Hermes. So Christianity is saying that, yes the Hermetic law via Moses is the truth, but that Jesus Christ is the pure form of the original law-giver. There's no need to rely on a polluted version, Christ has given the pure and final law in its original form.

At least, that's what I've been thinking from this discussion.

As for Mary in the Tower, I have been wondering whether a historical Mary was a figure of popular culture and had the mystery goddess conflated with her. The result of this being the development of "original" Christianity. The original Christianity producing Trinitarian Christianity as a reaction.

In other words, Philo + "original Christianity" - pagan/Gnostic elements = trinitarian Christianity.

If there had not been a historic catalyst for the cult of "original Christianity" (a popular historic person identified as the incarnation of the Christ spirit), then we may have had, Philo - Jewish/Gnostic elements = Hellenized Logos Judaism.
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Baley
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by Baley »

yakovzutolmai wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 5:55 am The tower/pillar:
And when these things were said, the roof was opened, and a bright star descended and stood above the pillar of Pege, and a voice was heard to this effect: Sovereign Pege, the mighty Son has sent me to make the announcement to you, and at the same time to do you service in parturition, designing blameless nuptials with you, O mother of the chief of all ranks of being, bride of the triune Deity. And the child begotten by extraordinary generation is called the Beginning and the End,—the beginning of salvation, and the end of perdition.
I don't believe there is really a tower or pillar here. See for example footnote 95 of this translation: https://www.tertullian.org/fathers/anon ... htm#_ftn95

The pillar is just a turn of phrase. The Greek reads "στήλη" and the context makes it quite clear that a statue is meant and not a tower or a pillar. If the author had wanted to specify a pillar, he would probably have used "στῦλος" here instead of "στήλη", and for a tower he would have used something like "πύργος". So while it's not impossible that there was a literal pillar of Pege, it is unlikely. The pillar of Pege is only a pillar insofar as any oblong statue can be described as a pillar. It's not a clear example of a tower motif.

Maybe you're too eager to confirm your own view. Nevertheless, I do like your out of the box thinking and your emphasis on gnostic and Arabic etc. influence.
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by yakovzutolmai »

Baley wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 8:53 am The pillar is just a turn of phrase. The Greek reads "στήλη" and the context makes it quite clear that a statue is meant and not a tower or a pillar. If the author had wanted to specify a pillar, he would probably have used "στῦλος" here instead of "στήλη", and for a tower he would have used something like "πύργος". So while it's not impossible that there was a literal pillar of Pege, it is unlikely. The pillar of Pege is only a pillar insofar as any oblong statue can be described as a pillar. It's not a clear example of a tower motif.
Thanks. Very important detail.

Either way, even if "megalithic column" was intended, it's not a tower. Tower vocabulary could serve as a token for pillar, and not mean tower according to the sought-after motif.

I'm having trouble finding the tower motif anywhere before Joseph and Asenath, and Simonian writings. I assume they arise out of a common tradition. Medieval motifs so successfully employ the tower as the metaphorical home of the sacred feminine, so I'm surprised I'm having trouble finding it as an ancient trope.

I think you've understood the idea by now, but I'm thinking of Mariamne in Herod's tower as a novelty. The creation of a psychologically resonant trope applied to more ancient motifs, and therefore a plausible catalyst for a change in popular religious sentiments.

I've started another thread for the purpose, but my feeling is the best way to find actual evidence for this would come from exploring the relationship of the Boethusians to the Simonians, maybe via the Essenes.

The hypothesis gives us a Boethus in a tower, and we know the Simonians have used the motif. Now there's an avenue of investigation. This is concerning the bridge between mythicism and historicity.
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Baley
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Re: Helena of Adiabene As The Magdalene - The Tower Motif In Mythology?

Post by Baley »

davidmartin wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 7:45 am The impression this text gives is that Christianity might originally have been designed to integrate with the existing mysteries but if that was ever the intent it didn't catch on, but whatever came later perhaps that was the original intent, unlikely as that might appear.
Maybe Christianity was not specifically designed to integrate with the mysteries, but attempted to at a couple of occasions. Some mystery elements remain like perhaps the μυστήριον of baptism, although not every Christian rite or "mystery" has its roots in ancient mysteries.
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