yegads: Holy Moses, Thoth!

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billd89
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yegads: Holy Moses, Thoth!

Post by billd89 »

Search of the Forums shows this hasn't been discussed, ever? That Moses=Thoth theory.

I have no knowledge of the state of Moses scholarship, but recent articles in the Israeli media suggest the myth of the my childhood has taken a beating. That dirty Egyptian, lol. I for one always loved the Moses stories, but like everything in the Bible, considered it simple myth (=silly stories).

I'm not so blithe in my disregard of outlier opinions on such myths these days, however, especially by any well-educated respectable 19th C. theologian who meticulously crafted his arguments with footnotes - only to be scorned by the outraged academy of his day, 'HOW VERY DARE YOU!'

Daniel Völter’s Jahwe und Mose im Licht aegyptischer Parallelen [1919] **HathitTrust Link** is one of those theological 'early' studies that offended all religious folks and so was binned outright. Hmmm... is it time for a re-appraisal?

Typical of the grossly oversimplified and unfair dismissal (Patrick Boylan, [1922], p.150f)

Students of the history of religions will probably be familiar with Daniel Völter’s attempt to argue from the presence of Thoth-worship in Sinai to a connection between the Hebrew leader Moses and Thoth. In his book on the Hebrew Patriarchs (Die Patriarchen Israels und die ägyptische Mythologie[1912]), and in his recent pamphlets, Wer War Mose? [1913] GoogleBooks Link, and Jahwe und Mose im Licht aegyptischer Parallelen [1919] (both published by Brill, Leyden) Völter has brought together a great mass of arguments to show that the Hebrew God Yahweh is really a form of the Egyptian god Har-Sopd*, and that Moses is a form of Thoth. The presence of Hathor in Sinai Völter associates with the legends of the Eye of the sun-god (Horus) which was brought back to Egypt by Thoth. The story of Moses and Zippora is but an attempt, according to Völter, to give a historical form to the legend of Thoth and Hathor. The speculations of Völter are often highly ingenious, but they are, for the most part, quite out of all relation with facts, and do not deserve to be seriously discussed.

That pesky great mass of clever arguments, right?! THE IMPERTINENCE ... well, why not? If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, waddles like a duck, swims like a duck...

* I have not confirmed Boylan's characterization of Völter's position is accurate. But scholarly consensus accepts that Har-Sopd = Hor-Sopdu (or Har-Septu) became 'Horus' (c.1300 BC?) in the Eastern Desert. There is currently no agreement what god(s) the Midianites worshipped. I'm also unsure what the status of the 'Kenite Hypothesis' is today. In short, Yahweh's origin from these small, obscure tribal gods is yet unproven (however probable).

Sopdu (Soped, Sopedu) was a god of war associated with the eastern borders and the eastern Desert, known as the “lord of the east”. He was sometimes associated with the planet Venus, but was generally a solar god, closely associated with the sun, which rises in the east, and represented the scorching heat of the sun.

Of Yahweh, wiki says:
It is unclear how, where, or why Yahweh appeared in the Levant; even his name is a point of confusion. The exact date of this occurrence is also ambiguous: the term Israel first enters historical records in the 13th century BCE with the Merneptah Stele, and while the worship of Yahweh is circumstantially attested to as early as the 12th century BCE, there is no attestation or record of even Yahweh's name, let alone his origin or character, until more than five-hundred years later, with the Mesha Stele (9th century BCE).

fwiw, here is a 1973 Thesis, "Comparative Analyses of the Attributes of Yahweh and Ra."
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Re: yegads: Holy Moses, Thoth!

Post by Japhethite »

I think that Moses was a real historical person like the bible says. I have candidates in the (6th? &) 12th (& 13th?) dynasty. But it is possible that Moses may have been analogously corresponded with Thoth, though I can't see how it helps any much with finding Moses in Egyptian history. Tehutihotep doesn't seem to match Moses. Mt Sinai was not in the "Sinai" Peninsula, so Thoth being worshipped in the Sinai doesn't really evidence anything. Hathor's link with the "Sinai" peninsula may be the origin of Mt St Catherine/Katerina, but this doesn't have any link with Moses unless Pihahiroth's name related to Hathor. Keturah's name might possible relate to Hathor?

Thoth has actually been corresponded with a number of biblical persons.

Thoth is syncretised with Yah/Ah/Aah who might match the biblical YHWH.

Thoth has been identified with Enoch/Idris.

I have suspected that Thoth/Djehewty may be the Egyptian cognate of Japheth/Diphath since Japheth's name's meaning is similar to Thoth's details (god of wisdom, scribe, invention of writing, author of all works of science, religion, philosophy, magic, and every work of every branch of knewledge, inventor of astronomy, astrology, maths, geometry, medicine, botany, civilised government, alphabet, writing, calendar).

Fasold related Thoth the contriver to the earth being divided in the days of Peleg son of Eber/Hud.

Although Thoth has not been related to Joseph, Joseph is suggested to match Imhotep who was son of Ptah and successor of Thoth.

Thoth as been identified with Moses since Artapanus.
There is the story of Thoth and Thamus in Plato's dialgoue Phaedrus which might perhaps be similar to Moses and Pharaoh?
Massey said the 3 Hermes Set, Shu/Num, Thoth match the 3 reincarnations Seth, Moses, Samuel.
Hislop supposed the Her-mes related to Moses.
Thoth/Djehewty sprang from the head of Set in some accounts. The Israelites would have been associated with Set/Seth. Though Thoth is mediator in conflict between Set & Horus.
Thoth is identified with Yah/Iahu/Ah, and Moses has been related by some to Ahmose Sapair or Ahmose Turo. Yah is corresponded with Sin who some people relate to Mt Sinai. Moses died at Mt Nebo, and Nebo was a similar god to Thoth.
Thoth/Yah was a moon god, and the Torah has lunar calendar.
Moses was learned in all the knowledge of the Egyptians.

I think Massey related Thoth to David?

Thoth or Taautos might relate to Tophet, or Daath of the Cabala.

The "3 magi" might be from Hermes Trismegistus or 3 Hermes.
And the evangelist Mark "interpreter of Peter" of Pharos/Egypt & Venice might be conflated with Mercury (or Mars).

Moses has been corresponded with other persons including Osiris (saved from water), Nilus, Arisu/Irsu, Phruro.
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Re: 'Moses' is Myth

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I should clarify: when I say 'simple myth' I don't mean 'all false!' Elements may be (partly) accurate. I haven't studied the Moses myth complex at all: I am aware of Jan Assmann's Moses the Egyptian [1998], but I am especially focused upon pre-1938 German-language scholarship.
Japhethite wrote: Sun Jul 25, 2021 6:36 pmBut it is possible that Moses may have been analogously corresponded with Thoth, though I can't see how it helps any much with finding Moses in Egyptian history.
...
Thoth as been identified with Moses since Artapanus.
There is a great deal of evidence regarding Thoth, going back to 2600 BC (if not -likely- much earlier). Moses? Moses is not attested to until c.350 BC, generously, though some have argued the Five Books may date as late as 270 BC. I take the Moses myth as an 'Alexandrian' (Ptolemaic = anti-Egyptian) creation bequeathed to the faction controlling the Jerusalem Temple c.325 BC. It is a new 'Jewish History' after the Persians were ousted & as a new Temple was created. (The desert wandering story bits might be a compilation of recorded E. Egyptian Semite and Midianite folklore ending c.600 BC, if we're being generous.) I suppose there was a primitive, nascent Mosaic cult in Eastern Egypt - probably a century or two predating the literature, maybe from 500 BC? - that the Ptolemies (favoring their own Jewish mercenaries) wanted to bolster. Meanwhile, c.420 BC, the Elephantine Jews (Chaldeans: from Syria, Persia) who had been settled deep in Egypt 150 yrs; they had no tradition of Moses, did they? Hmmm... that's very, very telling. Absence of evidence in Elephantine documents IS evidence of absence, in fact. Ergo:

So far as we learn from these texts Moses might never have existed, there might have been no bondage in Egypt, no exodus, no monarchy, no prophets. There is no mention of other tribes and no claim to any heritage in the land of Judah. Among the numerous names of colonists, Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Samuel, David, so common in later times, never occur (nor in Nehemiah), nor any other name derived from their past history as recorded in the Pentateuch and early literature. It is almost incredible, but it is true.
— Arthur Cowley, Aramaic Papyri of the Fifth Century B.C. pg. xxiii

Artapanus (c.200 BC) was not confabulating, he was telling both the Judeo-Egyptian folklore (Moses = Thoth) and divulging where the published official myth originates! Fantasic revelation: the truth. Wherever authority crumbled, Jewish story-telling exploded (ergo, Gnosticism). Presumably, the Mosaic brotherhood (which Philo mentions, repeatedly) was an Eastern Egyptian Semitic phenomenon (a very real network or mafia, c.400 BC) which had been transformed into a Jewish mystery cult (200 BC) before fading into obscurity c.40 AD. Among other cults, once-Canaanite Melchizedekians survived (already a relic, being subsumed by a messianic Christos cult c.50 AD), Chaldean Sethians yet another, and also the Cyrenean Cainites ... we can perceive there must have been a number of Judaisms present and active (or rather, in varying states of rise & decline) in Alexandria during the 1st C. AD.

I have nearly completed my own rough translation of Völter’s Jahwe und Mose; it broadly fits my working thesis but I cannot prove it was a direct influence on the work I'm dissecting. (It 'works' but that may be coincidental.)

Völter basically holds Yahweh as a Semitic variant of the older Egyptian God of the Sinai (I would guess c.800 BC). The Moses myth is different, separate, newer, but conflated (at the time the Torah was composed: say 350 BC) with the Midian god-worship (as old as 1250 BC, some scholars argue). He produces an enormous amount of evidence - but this REALLY isnt a story that religious folks want to hear.

Ernst Sellin's writings were likely a more direct influence on my Anonymous Authors, esp. Mose und seine Bedeutung für die israelitisch-jüdische Religionsgeschichte (Leipzig: Deichert, 1922)*. He was their very own professor, in 1922. Surely, a German scholar who enrolled in Sellin's course knew his Moses theory; the reader S.Freud certainly did, by 1929. Freud's research for his posthumous Moses and Monotheism [1939] **Link** had begun around 1933. His reference to it in 1934 letters probably alerted a broad network of intellectuals at that time. (By gossip, my Anonymous Authors probably knew it would be forthcoming in the late-1930s or early '40s. In a way, their work touches upon - intended to partly answer? - Jung's half-baked Hermetic speculations, Lion Feuchtwanger's 'Josephus' fiction and even Freud's late Egyptomania incursions.) So it is likely I will have to delve into Sellin's work, which greatly informed Freud's.


* Sellin's revised thesis appears in “Hosea und das Martyrium des Mose,” Zeitschrift für die Alttestamentliche Wissenschaft und die Kunde des Nachbiblischen Judentums (1928) and Das Zwölfprophetenbuch, 2nd ed. (Leipzig: Deichert, 1929).

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Sopdu Moses Imagery

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I'm uncertain if this bird/species is the male Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus), e.g. a mummified sparrowhawk in the University of Chicago's collection (OIM E9162) shown here, p.112.

Randy L. Shonkwiler, "The Behdetite: A Study of Horus the Behdetite from the Old Kingdom to the Conquest of Alexander", 2014 p.86 PhD.Link:
Two straight feathers (the šw.ty-crown) are worn by the falcon-god Sopdu at an early period. A golden falcon found at Hierakonpolis representing Horus of Nekhen and dating to the New Kingdom was fitted with a pair of straight feathers. The gods Min, Montu and Amun also wore this crown. In the Coffin Texts and later the twin feathers are identified with twin uraei and the eyes of the sun god. It is likely that it is the identification of the two plumes with uraei that led to their association with royal women of the 18th Dynasty, who frequently wear a crown with two tall straight feathers.

European artists borrowed the imagery, perhaps?

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Re: yegads: Holy Moses, Thoth!

Post by Japhethite »

The Hebrew word koren can be "horns" or "rays" (or maybe eyes?) So it wouldn't be a copy by Europeans, but there might have been a parallel with the Egyptian at the time.
Possibly the Armenian Moses of Choren is related.
Not sure if it is the same word koren but the ram in Daniel 8 and the earth-beast in Revelation 13 have two horns. (One person thought the latter match TV antennae. The twin towers memorial is similar?)
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"Jahwe und Mose im Licht aegyptischer Parallelen" von Dr. DANIEL VÖLTER [1919]

Post by billd89 »

My rough draft translation has errors ... apologies ... but still: this I did not know!
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p.12
Hathor is the ‘Goddess of Foreigners’ 1), who was also transferred among other things as such by the Egyptians to the Sinai. If in Egyptian legend usually Shu appears as the partner of Hathor, who has found the Sun's Eye (either as a lion or hunter) in the desert at the border of Punt (or in the Eastern Mountains) and has accompanied her to Egypt 2), then also Thoth 3) appears in Shu’s stead as the one who fetched Hathor. That this is valid also from the legend (as it stands in relation to the Sinai Peninsula) specifically is already conclusive from what was stated above regarding Hathor and Thoth as deities of the Mafkat region.
Between Moses and Zipporah, on the one hand, and Thoth and Hathor, on the other hand, a striking agreement already results on the basis of what has been said. As Moses goes from Egypt to Horeb/Sinai in the Midian country and there finds Zippora, so too Thoth comes from Egypt to Sinai and there finds Hathor. And this parallelism must appear all the more significant if one pays attention more precisely to the characters. This is because like Moses Thoth is also messenger of the gods, executor of their plans and mediator of their legislation. And as Zippora (daughter of the Chief Priest of Midian) is at home at Sinai, so also Hathor (not only Mistress of ‘God's Country in the East’ and of Punt, but also ‘Mistress of Mafkat’ specifically, i.e. the Sinai area) 4), is at home in Sinai and has a temple there.
If Moses has Zippora for his wife, yet Thoth’s is not actually Hathor but Maat, Goddess of Truth and Order. But like Hathor, Maat is also a daughter Rê 5), and both are readily identified with each other 6), so that Hathor appears

1) Sethe, p. 30,39.
2) Sethe, p. 34,39,40. ** Spiegelberg, Ägyptische mythus von Sonnenauge [1917], pp.1-8; Spiegelberg, “Sonnenauge, Demotischer Mythos vom.” **
3) Sethe, pp.21,22,25,39,40; cf. pp.3,4,14,16, 24.
4) Sethe, p.30.
5) Brugsch, p.478; Budge, I, pp.416,418; Philippe Virey, La Religion de L'Ancienne Égypte [1910], p.169. Cf. Erman, p.24.
6) Brugsch, pp.478,480; cf. also Budge, pp.430,418.

p.13

at the same time as Maat (or, as the Truth) and Maat at the same time as Hathor (or, as the Sun’s Eye.) This fusion of Hathor and Maat is especially accomplished in Hathor of Cusae (Ancient Greek; Ppy-Cnh; today's El Quseyya), because Hathor of Cusae is also called ‘Maat’ and worshipped as such 1), and it is to the Hathor-Maat of Cusae that the Old Testament narrative seems to refer explicitly.This happens, as I believe, in the narrative of Numbers 12:1ff. {“Then Miriam and Aaron criticized Moses because of the Cushite woman he had married, for he had taken a Cushite wife.” etc.}, where all at once a ‘Cushite’ is mentioned as Moses’ wife. That Moses should have taken a second wife besides the Midianite (or Kenite) Zipporah, and one of Cushite (i.e. Ethiopian) origin is not probable; also, nowhere else is something like this indicated. With the original {Hebrew} ḵu•šîṯ no Ethiopian woman was meant, but the same woman as Midianite (or Kenite) Zipporah, i.e. Hathor. This is only designated in Numbers 12 after her Egyptian origin from ‘Kuset’ or Cusae. Also following Sethe 2), besides Dendera so Cusae comes into consideration as the place of origin for Hathor’s legend of the Sun-Eye in a foreign country. And since Hathor-Maat of Cusae is numbered among the seven great Hathors 3), so too this explanation seems to reside in the fact Zipporah (wife of Moses) in her identity with the Hathor-Maat of Cusae, appears in Exodus 2:16ff as one of the seven daughters of the Chief Priest of Midian (= Rê). Zipporah also recalls Hathor by her name, since Zipporah means ‘bird; sparrow’ and the name Hathor was ideographically expressed by Egyptians by a bird, namely a sparrow-hawk 4). But that Hathor = Zipporah in the

1) Brugsch, p.481; Aegyptologie, p.445; Budge, I, p.432 above. **Claas Jouco Bleeker, Hathor and Thoth: Two Key Figures of the Ancient Egyptian Religion [1973], p.69.**
2) A.a.O. p.39, cf. p.29.
3) Brugsch, p.481, cf. p.318,319; Sourdille, p.99; Budge, I, p.433f.
4) Wiedemann, p.78.

p.14

Israelite tradition appears as a Midianite (Exodus 2:16 ff.) or Kenite (Judges 1:16; 4:11) can also be explained. The Kenites seem to have been a Midianite tribe that, as its name indicates (in Syriac and Arabic,‘Cain’ = blacksmith), practiced the blacksmith's trade. And the presence of these blacksmith nomads at Sinai (Numbers 10:29ff.; Judges 1:16; 4:11) who would be connected with copper mines there. For where there is ore, there are also smiths or ore-workers. Since Amenemhet III built his Hathor temple at the Sinai copper mines at, it can be understood that Midianites or Kenites appropriated Hathor = Zipporah at Sinai. That we are correct with equating Moses with Thoth and Zipporah with Hathor is confirmed by the further narrative in Exodus 4:18-26. As Moses returns with Zipporah from Sinai to Egypt, so also (according to the Egyptian legend of the Eye of the Sun) Thoth returns with Hathor from ‘Punt’ (or from Sinai) to Egypt. And as Moses and Zipporah stop on the way (of this journey, from Sinai to Egypt), so also Thoth and Hathor stop in (Bw-gm=) the desert station of Elkab 1) on their journey (from Punt, or by desert valley from Sinai to Egypt). In addition, according to Israelite as well as Egyptian tradition, something quite similar happens at this station. As Moses’ life is threatened by God, but his anger is appeased, so here too Thoth's life is threatened by a deity and that deity must be satisfied, i.e. their anger must be appeased 2). According to Egyptian myth it is, of course, the furious, bloodthirsty Hathor who threatens the life of Thoth 3), while according to

1) Cf. Sethe, op. cit. p. 23 f.
2) Cf. Sethe, op. cit. p. 21. 22. 34.
3) Sethe (p. 34 above) assumes that the Hathor of Punt and of Bw-gm was already early attributed a special shape, namely that of a predator, i.e. the panther.

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Re: Freud, on Moses

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Lay Egyptologist and amateur anthropologist Dr. Sigmund Freud starting collecting antiquities c.1897. I suspect he was partly inspired to write the Moses/Thoth story in the mid-1930s by Prof. Daniel Völter’s groundbreaking work more than two decades earlier.
-- keyword: Voelter --

e-zine article, 2019
Freud’s most extensive theoretical engagement with Egypt came in his last major work, Moses and Monotheism (1939), in which he advanced the controversial argument that Moses was not a Jew but an Egyptian follower of the revolutionary monotheistic pharaoh Akhenaten, whose religion Moses transmitted to the Jews.

Apparently, among over 2,000 artefacts, this particular votive figurine (Baboon Thoth w/ lunar crescent and disc, c.100 AD) was one of Freud's veritable favorites.
A charming marble statuette of the lunar god Thoth in the form of a baboon was one of Freud’s favourite pieces: seated, with smoothly carved limbs and a conspicuously large penis, it emanates a quietly alluring sensuality. Freud’s housekeeper recalled his habit of stroking it, suggesting the sheer tactile pleasure that he took in his antiquities. As the wall text notes, however, Thoth was also the god of the intellect and writing, and ‘may have appealed to Freud because he represents a balance between instinct and intellect’.

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Another reference:
A particularly prized object stands on the right hand side of the desk: a marble statuette of the ancient Egyptian god Thoth. Paula Fichtl, Freud’s loyal housekeeper (and a master at dusting his clustered collection while maintaining its painstaking arrangement), recalled the doctor patting Thoth’s bulbous, baboon-like head each morning and stroking it while writing or deep in thought. Thoth is credited with inventing hieroglyphics, written symbols that intrigued Freud. “Perhaps the connections between Freud’s collections and his theoretical work are most clearly demonstrated in his interest in Egyptian hieroglyphs,” said Stefan Marianski, education officer at the [Freud House] museum. “He sometimes compared dreams to hieroglyphic texts which could be deciphered with the right tools.”

The rear of the Thoth statuette is clearly visible on his desk at 19, Bergasse in Vienna, at the bottom-center of this c.1935? photo:
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billd89
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Re: Thoth

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Alchemists are popularly and wrongly believed to have sought chemical means to 'fake gold.' In fact, master artisans sought and carefully protected recipes for glazes, to imitate as perfectly and beautifully as possible, those extraordinary colors from nature and certain rare minerals especially.

A recent scholar whose work on alchemy is excellent and highly recommended: Shannon Grimes.
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Re: yegads: Holy Moses, Thoth!

Post by yakovzutolmai »

My understanding of the ancient system is that Saturn is the sun of the night sky, and is responsible for the light cast upon the Moon - controlling its cycles. Thus, the ancient Moon god Sin of Sogmatar/Harran/Arabia is being syncretized with Thoth, as one version of Chronos. Hermes Trismegistus comes from Harran. Meanwhile, the Sun as Ra seems like a candidate for Joshua. Sin is a very good candidate for the derivation of Yahwe from Midianite practice, and the Egyptians even called this deity Iah.

This is in contrast to the system of Ptah. The seven suns, the hunter, the battle with the sky dragon, the celestial cow, the Great Architect. These forms appear, actually, all over the world. However, they differ meaningfully from the system of Sin, in my opinion.

It would seem like this puzzle is easy to solve. "Moses" of history is Thutmose I, the Egyptian conqueror of Palestine following the rebound of the Theban dynasty following the Hyksos expulsion. While Jerusalem was a minor city in the context of the Israelite kingdom, it was probably one of the few major Canaanite-Egyptian settlements to have survived the Bronze Age Collapse.

If Thutmose is associating his Pharaonic cult with Thoth and Iah, then he is appealing to the Syrians and Mesopotamians who worship Sin. He is coming as Sin's lawgiver. He is an incarnation of Hermes Trismegistus. That's what his name means.

The Exodus tale is obviously fabricated. Moses's literary life was derived from other tales.

Thutmose as Moses makes him the lawgiver and introducer of Iah's religion to Jerusalem. Thutmose as Thoth makes him the symbolic/esoteric agent of Iah who has power in the heavens. Moses is both entities in one.
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Re: Moses =Thoth

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yakovzutolmai wrote: Mon Sep 06, 2021 5:08 amthe ancient Moon god Sin of Sogmatar/Harran/Arabia is being syncretized with Thoth, as one version of Chronos. ... Sin is a very good candidate for the derivation of Yahwe from Midianite practice, and the Egyptians even called this deity Iah.
I also strongly suspect Yahweh comes from the Sinai, Midian/Edom originally. Arab god!
This is in contrast to the system of Ptah... they differ meaningfully from the system of Sin, in my opinion.
I need to examine the possible Egyptian 'Chronos' angle, still.
It would seem like this puzzle is easy to solve. "Moses" of history is Thutmose I, the Egyptian conqueror of Palestine following the rebound of the Theban dynasty following the Hyksos expulsion. While Jerusalem was a minor city in the context of the Israelite kingdom, it was probably one of the few major Canaanite-Egyptian settlements to have survived the Bronze Age Collapse. If Thutmose is associating his Pharaonic cult with Thoth and Iah, then he is appealing to the Syrians and Mesopotamians who worship Sin. He is coming as Sin's lawgiver. He is an incarnation of Hermes Trismegistus. That's what his name means.
Thoth. "Hermes Trismegistus" appears in the 4th C BC or thereabouts.
The Exodus tale is obviously fabricated. Moses's literary life was derived from other tales.
Daniel Voelter dissected the elements in a series of books, c.1912-19. His work was accurate, but dismissed (heresy!)
Thutmose as Moses makes him the lawgiver and introducer of Iah's religion to Jerusalem. Thutmose as Thoth makes him the symbolic/esoteric agent of Iah who has power in the heavens. Moses is both entities in one.
Whether this actually happened or was imagined so, I agree smthg like this is the explanation.
Hermes Trismegistus comes from Harran.
Can you cite this somewhere? Hermes is from Thoth; I've never seen Egyptian Thoth indicated as a foreign god.


You can never have enough Wm. Blake. Here's a watercolor, 'Moses and the Burning Bush' c.1803:
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Last edited by billd89 on Mon Oct 11, 2021 6:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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