24
Mar 13

Illuminati Symbols

Serpent (Snake)

David Icke's reptilian alien queen

The queen according to David Icke

Snake/serpent/reptile symbology is of particular interest to those seeking the truth because many will be aware of David Icke's claim that the planet's ruling elite are a species of shape shifting reptilian aliens from another dimension. http://www.davidicke.com/articles/reptilian-agenda-mainmenu-43  Although many people believe the theory http://www.theatlanticwire.com/national/2013/04/12-million-americans-believe-lizard-people-run-our-country/63799/ Icke is unable to support his shape shifting alien claims with any credible evidence and sophisticated truth seekers recognise that Icke is employed by the Illuminati to discredit his followers by making them appear insane to the general public. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1FBsfHO3zU  http://www.the-big-picture.org.uk/wp/?page_id=2928 One of Icke's tactics is to make his followers distrust all "mainstream" information sources, but as this article demonstrates mainstream academic research is often the best  source of truth, especially with respect to archeology and ancient history.

This article explores the history of serpent symbology and explains why it is significant to the church, the Freemasons and other secret societies which form the Illuminati controlled network which run the planet from behind the scenes.

Pre-Neolithic Shaman and Snakes

Indonesian shaman

Indonesian shaman

Prior to the rise of the first permanent agricultural settlements in Sumer (Sumeria), people all over the world lived in tribes as hunter gatherers and the shaman of the tribe was responsible for supervising the practice of  tribe members reaching altered states of consciousness in order to encounter and interact with the spirit world.  University of Chicago Professor Mircea Eliade writes, "A first definition of this complex phenomenon, and perhaps the least hazardous, will be: shamanism = 'technique of religious ecstasy'."  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shamanism

Representations of snakes occur as early as the European Upper Paleolithic (50,000 to 10,000 years ago), and the zigzag, a design commonly associated with serpentine water, is said to be man's earliest symbolic motif recorded: Neanderthals used this sign around 40,000 BCE, or earlier. Bednarik reports that a meandering line together with a cup mark, a typical serpentine configuration, is believed to be the oldest known rock art, produced in India two or three hundred thousand years ago. http://oak.ucc.nau.edu/malotki/PDF/Malotki%20Serpent_Rev1.pdf

In 2006 Associate Professor Sheila Coulson, from the University of Oslo discovered what was reported to be mankind's oldest known ritual http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2006-11/trco-wor112906.php While studying the Sanpeople of north-west Botswana Coulson found what she calls the Python Cave at Tsodilo, which contains a rock resembling the head of a huge python.

On the six meter long by two meter tall rock, they found three-to-four hundred indentations that could only have been man-made.  Excavations in the cave revealed "Stone age people took colourful spearheads, brought them to the cave, and finished carving them there. Only the red spearheads were burned. It was a ritual destruction of artifacts. There was no sign of normal habitation. No ordinary tools were found at the site. Our find means that humans were more organised and had the capacity for abstract thinking at a much earlier point in history than we have previously assumed. All of the indications suggest that Tsodilo has been known to mankind for almost 100,000 years as a very special place in the pre-historic landscape.” says Sheila Coulson.

The Python Stone

The Python Stone



Coulson also noticed a secret chamber behind the python stone: "Some areas of the entrance to this small chamber were worn smooth, indicating that many people had passed through it over the years.   The shaman, who is still a very important person in San culture, could have kept himself hidden in that secret chamber. He would have had a good view of the inside of the cave while remaining hidden himself. When he spoke from his hiding place, it could have seemed as if the voice came from the snake itself.  The shaman would have been able to control everything.  It was perfect.  The shaman could also have  disappeared  from the chamber by crawling out onto the hillside through a small shaft."

Snake Venom Inducing Altered States of Consciousness

The 7 Steps to Wisdom and Inner Peace

In his book Travel Within: The 7 Steps to Wisdom and Inner Peace Jamshid 'Jim' Hosseini describes an experience he had while following the Hare Krishnas and a Hindu monk  http://blogs.riverfronttimes.com/dailyrft/2009/04/drinking_the_cobra_venom.php .  The monk said when someone reached the level of attainment, he'd be free of what kept him bound to fear and that if you continue to fear death, you'll never be free.  So in order to conquer his fear, Jim deliberately embarked upon an altered state of consciousness by drinking a concoction of milk, honey, tea and cobra venom.

Initially Jim felt fear unlike any he'd ever felt in his life. There was a searing pain throughout his body.  He was thinking, "Oh, my God, why did I do this? I'm a fool. This is the stupidest thing I ever did."  And then there was a change.  He started to feel no pain.  He wasn't aware of his clothes or the temperature of the air or the ground beneath his feet.  He was released.  He saw the light, all those near-death-experience cliches. His mind started replaying scenes of family dinners from his childhood. He thought, "Am I really dying or is my mind playing tricks on me?"

Jim said he experienced millions of years in a matter of seconds. He believes he experienced the Big Bang and everything that has happened since.  He realized that we are all stardust.  The elements in our bodies are the same that were present at the Big Bang.book_The_Serpent_Grail

In the Serpent Grail by Philip Gardiner and Gary Osborn,  the authors claim that many religions and religious rituals were based upon the shamanic practice of holding up a poisonous snake, milking its venom into a skull, cutting off its head, letting blood go into the skull with the venom, wrapping its body around a sacred staff, and stirring the mixture with the staff.  Those who drink the mixture are given a hallucinogenic spiritual experience and benefit from good health as well.  The snake is a giver of life and death (and other polar opposites) but represents in itself peaceful neutrality.

Although Gardiner and Osborn are on to something, the truth is that shamanic cultures were not limited to snake venom and used whatever naturally occurring hallucinogens were available in the locale including lotus flowers, fly agaric and psilocybin mushrooms, ayahuasca (south America) and peyote (north America).  The evidence points to the earliest state religions in Sumer and Egypt being based upon suppressing knowledge of the hallucinogenic effects of cobra venom and lotus flowers in order to maintain a hierarchical, organised society where people obeyed authority figures as opposed to being free and developing their own morality by experiencing and knowing divine intelligence first hand.  As the rulers saw it they were creating order out of chaos and making slaves of the people.

Snake Visions During Altered States of Consciousness

Professor emeritus of languages at Northern Arizona University, Ekkehart Malotki, writes "As I have shown elsewhere (Malotki 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000), the vast majority of PASTYLE (ancient hunter gatherer) rock art bears all the hallmarks of shamanistic visionary imagery produced by the human nervous system in altered states of consciousness.  I believe that this is especially true for the range of ophidian (snake) images" http://oak.ucc.nau.edu/malotki/PDF/Malotki%20Serpent_Rev1.pdf

Rock art on drugs

Rock art on drugs.  Serpent imagery from three different stages of altered states of consciousness (ASC).

Malotki goes on to describe the drawing above: "PASTYLE snakes and snakelike elements can be seen as mental products from all three progressive stages of the shamanistic trance experience.  Thus, during stage I the hallucinatory mind generates a series of endogenous entoptics.  Those resembling zigzags or sinuous lines constitute the many "headless" snakes within the serpentine component of PASTYLE art.  Attempting to make sense of this basic entoptic shape, the shaman-artist, by equating it with an object familiar to him from his normal state of consciousness, then construes actual headed serpents in stage II.  Anthropomorphized snakes and other ophidian monsters, finally, would be hallucinated by the trancing subject in stage III, the deepest stage of the ASC.  Frequently, but not always, this stage is reached after the subject passes through a tunnel or vortex and begins to identify with the visionary images."

Snakes in Sumerian Religion

Around 8,000 BCE people first began to farm in the Middle East in permanent villages.  Before farming, human population was limited by the natural food productivity of the environment.  Despite periodic crop failures, farmers found that most years they could produce more food than they needed for their families.  They could support more children and, with more hands, they could cultivate more land and produce even more food.  A succession of inventions including the plough, irrigation, metal tools, and selective breeding of crops and livestock lead to increased food surpluses and accelerated population growth.  Surplus food was the first form of wealth and it gave power to those who could control it.  Surplus food also allowed increasing numbers of people to be spared from farming to specialize in occupations such as craft production, warfare, trade or religion.

Female Lizard Figurines, terracotta, Ur (Ubaid culture), first half of the fourth millenium BCE, h: 14cm From the Ubaid - Southern Mesopotamian Period, 5000 BCE - 4000 BCE Found in Ur

Female Lizard (snake?) from Sumeria  5000 BCE - 4000 BCE http://www.newsnfo.co.uk/pages/reptilian%20figurines%20Course%20Website.htm

Until the advent of military kings known as Lugals in c. 2500 BCE, Sumerian city states were under a virtually-complete theocratic government controlled by independent groups of En, or high priests  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sumerian_religion . Priests were responsible for continuing the cultural and religious traditions of their city-state, and were viewed as mediators between humans and the cosmic and terrestrial forces.  The priesthood resided full-time in temple complexes, and administered to matters of state including the large irrigation processes necessary for the civilization’s survival.  It seems logical that this new breed of shaman would prize conscientious hard working subjects over enlightened, fully conscious members of the community so they hid the ancient shamanic wisdom within the symbols and stories of their new city state religion.

The Sumerian culture was the first to develop writing; cuneiform text first appeared in Uruk period c. 3300 BC. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cuneiform and was preceded by cylinder seals which first appeared at the contemporary site of Susa in south-western Iran and at the early site of Uruk in southern Mesopotamia c. 3,500BC http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cylinder_seal

The first written evidence of state religion is found on the earliest Sumerian cylinder seal tablets c.3,500 BCE; they show that the concept of a human paradise and the Garden of Eden originated from the Sumerians who were describing a land outside of Sumer.  The concept of this home of the immortals was later handed down to the Semitic Babylonians who conquered Sumer. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Garden_of_the_gods_%28Sumerian_paradise%29  Ninti, the title of Sumerian Goddess Ninhursag, also means "the mother of all living", and was a title given to the later Hurrian goddess Kheba.  This is also the title given in the Bible to Eve, the Hebrew and Aramaic Ḥawwah (חוה), who was made from the rib of Adam, in a strange reflection of the Sumerian myth, in which Adam — not Enki — walks in the Garden of Paradise. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enki

The tree, serpent and figures carved on the Sumarian greenstone cylinder seal shown below suggest that the scene was related , to the temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden.  http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/highlights/highlight_objects/me/a/adam_and_eve_cylinder_seal.aspx In Sumerian culture God was no longer to be experienced directly via sacred natural hallucinogens, but instead had become the ultimate authority figure (representing the Sumerian Priesthood) who deamonised the snake and forbid his subjects to eat fruit from the tree of knowledge (shamanic knowledge).  When the priesthood was superseeded by military kings, the kings themselves claimed to be gods or earthly representations of them.

The tree, serpent and figures carved on this greenstone cylinder seal suggested to George Smith, an Assyriologist working in the British Museum between 1840 and 1876, that the scene was related to the Old Testament story of the temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden.

The tree, serpent and figures carved on this greenstone cylinder seal suggested to George Smith, an Assyriologist working in the British Museum between 1840 and 1876, that the scene was related to the Old Testament story of the temptation of Eve in the Garden of Eden.

The most troublesome of all serpents in Mesopotamian (Sumerian, Assyrian, Akkadian and Babylonian) mythology are described in the Babylonian creation epic (the Enuma Elish)—those primeval "monster serpents" that constitute the forces of chaos in the primeval world of the gods. Described as "sharp toothed, with fang unsparing," possessing bodies filled "with poison for blood," they gather in council, preparing to wage a war in heaven against the great gods.  The forces of chaos are headed by none other than Tiamat, who is herself a female serpent (frequently referred to as a dragon). Ultimately, chaos is subdued as Tiamat is killed by Marduk, the champion deity, and her body is cast out of the presence of the gods, half to form the earth's seas and the other half to form the sky. http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/jbms/?vol=10&num=2&id=254  This epic is one of the most important sources for understanding the Babylonian worldview, centered on the supremacy of Marduk and the creation of humankind for the service of the gods.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/En%C3%BBma_Eli%C5%A1 Many people have been mislead by Zecharia Sitchin to believe that these gods (the Sumerian Annunaki, meaning something to the effect of "those of royal blood")  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anunnaki were extraterrestrial in origin.  Sitchin has been exposed as a fraud http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1JJ9KtWOCs which suggests that he, like David Icke, may work for those who are deliberately trying to obscure the truth.

Impresion of cylinder seal in the linear style; a snout-nosed, horned reptile - Tiamat as a dragon - faces left

Impresion of cylinder seal in the linear style; a snout-nosed, horned reptile (Tiamat as a cobra?) faces left. The seal may illustrate a scene from the epic of creation in which the forces of chaos, led by Tiamat, are defeated by a god representing cosmic order, probably Ninurta. http://www.bmimages.com/preview.asp?image=00291660001&imagex=1&searchnum=0001

The Epic of Gilgamesh, an epic poem from Mesopotamia, is amongst the earliest surviving works of literature.  The literary history of Gilgamesh begins with five independent Sumerian poems about 'Bilgamesh' (Sumerian for Gilgamesh), king of Uruk, dating from 2150-2000 BCE. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epic_of_Gilgamesh  The story tells of Gilgamesh’s search for the meaning of life.  Gilgamesh was told the plant of eternal life lay at the bottom of a certain lake.  After retrieving the plant Gilgamesh rests.  A snake comes and eats the plant.  The snake becomes immortal and Gilgamesh goes home to die. http://inannafilm.wordpress.com/the-snake/  In both the Garden of Eden story and the Gilgamesh epic a snake possesses a great prize, which is denied to the principle mortal character.

Gilgamesh had the plant in his hand; all he had to do was return home. But half-way across the desert an oasis lured him to take his rest. As he slept a serpent smelt the magic plant and ate it from his hand. Gilgamesh awoke to see the serpent slithering away, leaving its old dry skin discarded on the sand. The plant was gone but the realisation had come, ‘it is not for man to live forever’. http://www.neildalrymple.com/gilgamesh.html

Gilgamesh had the plant in his hand; all he had to do was return home. But half-way across the desert an oasis lured him to take his rest. As he slept a serpent smelt the magic plant and ate it from his hand.
Gilgamesh awoke to see the serpent slithering away, leaving its old dry skin discarded on the sand.
The plant was gone but the realisation had come, ‘it is not for man to live forever’.
http://www.neildalrymple.com/gilgamesh.html

Myths and Mystery Schools

Sumarian religion is the earliest post shamanic myth and the first to be recorded in writing.  In many shamanic cultures all adults journey and use various techniques to enter altered states and communicate with the spirit world,  http://www.lastmaskcenter.org/media/articles/spiritual-adults.htm  but post agricultural religious myths are generally designed to be understood quite differently by the ruling elite and the general public.  For the ruling elite myths contain hidden (esoteric) truths; they are designed to protect secret knowledge by hiding it in plain site.  The general public are expected to take the stories at face (exoteric) value and believe them to be factual historical accounts.  The following pair of paragraphs from The Secret Teachings of All Ages http://www.sacred-texts.com/eso/sta/sta04.htm by 33rd degree Freemason Manly P. Hall  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manly_Palmer_Hall explains the view of the ruling elite:

Masonic snake belt buckle

Masonic snake belt buckle

WHEN confronted with a problem involving the use of the reasoning faculties, individuals of strong intellect keep their poise, and seek to reach a solution by obtaining facts bearing upon the question. Those of immature mentality, on the other hand, when similarly confronted, are overwhelmed. While the former may be qualified to solve the riddle of their own destiny, the latter must be led like a flock of sheep and taught in simple language. They depend almost entirely upon the ministrations of the shepherd. The Apostle Paul said that these little ones must be fed with milk, but that meat is the food of strong men. Thoughtlessness is almost synonymous with childishness, while thoughtfulness is symbolic of maturity.

There are, however, but few mature minds in the world; and thus it was that the philosophic-religious doctrines of the pagans were divided to meet the needs of these two fundamental groups of human intellect--one philosophic, the other incapable of appreciating the deeper mysteries of life. To the discerning few were revealed the esoteric, or spiritual, teachings, while the unqualified many received only the literal, or exoteric, interpretations. In order to make simple the great truths of Nature and the abstract principles of natural law, the vital forces of the universe were personified, becoming the gods and goddesses of the ancient mythologies. While the ignorant multitudes brought their offerings to the altars of Priapus and Pan (deities representing the procreative energies), the wise recognized in these marble statues only symbolic concretions of great abstract truths.

Occult imagery.  Serpent of wisdom on the tree of life.

Occult (Kabbalah) imagery. Serpent of wisdom on the tree of life.

This division between esoteric and exoteric is the source of occult  (hidden) knowledge protected by ancient mystery schools (of which Freemasonry and the Rosicrucians are present day examples) where only the privileged few are secretly initiated into the spiritual mysteries of shamanism and the secrets of solar, lunar and astronomical cycles, which were vital to the success of agriculture.  These two bodies of knowledge were secretly encoded into religious texts, which could only be properly understood by the mystery school adepts and were simultaneously used to create rules (commandments) for managing an orderly society.  Today Wikipedia continues the tradition of keeping truth from the masses by claiming these roots are unknown http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Western_esotericism and western governments continue to create laws which make it illegal for the masses to use naturally occurring hallucinogens.  Today secret astronomy has been superseded by occult scientific knowledge such as the discoveries of Nicola Tesla and Antoine Berchamp.

Wikipedia, however, works partly by lying and partly by scattering the truth across a huge number of different entries and you can find out that Kykeon, the beverage consumed by participants in the ancient Greek cult of Eleusinian Mysteries, might have been based on hallucinogens from ergot, if you know where to look.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ergot .

And from the Encyclopedia Britannica : "Mystery Religion, any of various secret cults of the Greco-Roman world that offered to individuals religious experiences not provided by the official public religions. They originated in tribal ceremonies that were performed by primitive peoples in many parts of the world. Whereas in these tribal communities almost every member of the clan or the village was initiated, initiation in Greece became a matter of personal choice. The mystery religions reached their peak of popularity in the first three centuries ad. Their origin, however, goes back to the earlier centuries of Greek history." http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/400805/mystery-religion

Serpents and Chakras

Snakes are often associated with the all seeing eye in religious symbology and the all seeing eye is the Ajna (the brow chakra) in Hindu metaphysical tradition.  Entwined snakes are used as a symbol for rising kundalini energy by Hindus.

Snakes and the All Seeing Eye

The Sumerian cylinder seal below shows the goddess Inanna with a snake emanating from her forehead http://mushroom-atlantis.blogspot.co.uk/

sumarian snake and mushroom

Sumerian cylinder seal



Just like the Sumarian military kings the ancient Egyptian Pharaohs assumed the identity of a God.  The pharaohs used a snake representing the goddess Wadjet on their own foreheads called the Uraeus, which  is a stylized, upright form of an Egyptian cobra used as a symbol of deity and divine authority in ancient Egypt. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uraeus In whatever manner that the Uraeus was displayed upon the pharaoh's head, it was, in effect, part of the pharaoh's crown.  The pharaoh was recognized only by wearing the Uraeus, which conveyed legitimacy to the ruler. There is evidence for this tradition even in the Old Kingdom during the third millennium BCE.  Several goddesses associated with or being considered aspects of Wadjet are depicted wearing the Uraeus also.

Uraeus

Uraeus. Left - Djedefre, Pharaoh 2566 BCE – 2558 BCE.  Centre - Schepseskaf, Pharaoh 2503 BCE – 2498 BCE.  Right - Akhenaton, Pharaoh 1353 BCE – 1336 BCE.



Why might earth's earliest state religions use a snake on the forehead to indicate divinity?  The third eye (also known as the all seeing eye) is a mystical and esoteric concept referring to an invisible eye which provides perception of inner realms and higher consciousness.  It is often associated with religious visions.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Third_eye Third eye symbolism is used by present day religions world-wide as can be seen below; Buddah is shown accompanied by 3 'standing' cobras and the Hindu god Sheva combines third eye symbology with a cobra necklace.

budism islam hindu mormom chinese folk religion third eye

Top left - Buddah's third eye is open; Bottom left - the curtain has been raised so the third eye at the Mormon Temple in Salt Lake City can see.  Centre - Islam's Hand of Fatima displays the third eye.   Top right - Shiva's third eye is open.  Bottom right - Chinese Folk Religion God Ba Yeh's third eye is open and a worshipper visits a Chinese snake temple with cobra prominently displayed.

 

The image below shows Pope Benedict XVI praying under the all seeing eye on the Mural of Annunciation at Nazareth's Church of Annunciation in May 2009. http://conspireality.tv/2009/05/29/barry-chamish-vatican-makes-effort-to-end-palestinian-conflict/ and http://mysteryoftheiniquity.com/2011/09/10/all-seeing-eye-in-church/

Pope Benedict XVI under the all seeing eye

Pope Benedict XVI under the all seeing eye

The same symbology is used by secret societies who's adepts know the secret of suppressed shamanism.  The gravestone  below displays the All Seeing Eye in a triangle (Eye of Providence http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eye_of_Providence ) seen in many Christian churches, but its unlikely that a Christian would include a snake so prominently on his own grave stone; its more likely that Dr. Franz Leuffen was a member of a secret society mystery school such as the Rosicrucians or The Freemasons.

Detail of a grave at the Melaten Cemetery Cologne.  Dr. med Franz Leuffen is the author of a book concerning post-mortem examinations, written in the 1860s. Dr. Leuffen died in 1900.

Detail of a grave at the Melaten Cemetery Cologne. Dr. Franz Leuffen is the author of a book concerning post-mortem examinations, written in the 1860s. Dr. Leuffen died in 1900.

Naga and Kundalini Energy

Naga

Naga



Sumerian symbology also includes images of snakes in pairs coiled together in the same way as snakes appear on the present day caduceus.  The oldest known representation of two snakes entwined around a rod is that of the Sumerian fertility god Ningizzida (see below).  Ningizzida was sometimes depicted as a serpent with a human head, eventually becoming a god of healing and magic.  Nin Giz Zida is another name for the ancient Hindu concept of Kundalini, a Sanskrit word meaning either coiled up or coiling like a snake.  The caduceus is the main symbol of the Greek god Hermes (with whom Ningizzida has been equated) and it represents the rising of kundalini energy and opening of the third eye and crown chakra.

Left - Sumerian goddess Ishtar with a wand of two spiral snakes. Centre - Sumerian cylinder seal showing a "sun disc" over two snake shapes. Right - Caduceus on the wall of NorTown Medical Building, California

Left - Sumerian goddess Ishtar with a wand of two spiral snakes. Centre left  - Sumerian cylinder seal showing a "sun disc" over two snake shapes. Centre right - The Sumerian god Ningizzida, appearing as two serpents twining around a central pole, as depicted on a vase from Sumer (dated variously 2200–2025 BCE). Right - Greek God Hermes, wearing a winged hat and holding a caduceus.

 

Snakes will entwine themselves together in the wild, which is likely the original inspiration for such imagery.

snakes entwined

Mating snakes entwined



Hermes was the Greek god of transitions and boundaries; the Romans subsequently took the characteristics and mythology of Hermes and projected them on to their own god Mercury.  Much like a Shaman he moved freely between the worlds of the mortal and divine, as emissary and messenger of the gods, intercessor between mortals and the divine.  His main symbol was the caduceus  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermes   Both Thoth and Hermes were gods of writing and of magic in their respective cultures.  In Hellenistic Egypt (323 BCE - c. 140 BCE), the Greeks recognised the congruence of their god Hermes with Thoth and subsequently the two gods were worshiped as one in what had been the Temple of Thoth in Khemnu, which the Greeks called Hermopolis.

Thoth

Left - Thoth (with a pair of python wound staffs) offers the ankh for Pharaoh Seti I to kiss in Seti's temple at Abydos. Right - Thoth wears a crown including a pair of pythons.

 

Hermes Trismegistus (Greek: thrice-greatest Hermes; Latin: Mercurius ter Maximus) is the purported author of the Hermetic Corpus, a series of sacred texts that are the basis of Hermeticism http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hermes_Trismegistus (otherwise known as Shamanism, Paganism, Western Esoterism, the Occult (hidden), Kabbalism, Gnosticism, Mysticism, Enlightenment, Rosicrucianism, Freemasonry, Luciferianism or Alchemy).  The illustration below shows Hermes Trismegistus with book in hand studying a 3D model of the heavens.   His hat indicates that his third eye is open and he has discarded the caduceus because the process of enlightenment is complete within him; his former (pre-enlightened) self lies slumped on the floor - he has been born again.  Tools of war lie discarded behind him as he has no motivation to use them. The figure in the clouds represents the mind of God, contact with which is described in one of the earliest Hermetic texts: Poimandres, The Vision of Hermes http://www.sacred-texts.com/eso/sta/sta08.htm an extract is included below:

Hermes, while wandering in a rocky and desolate place, gave himself over to meditation and prayer. Following the secret instructions of the Temple, he gradually freed his higher consciousness from the bondage of his bodily senses; and, thus released, his divine nature revealed to him the mysteries of the transcendental spheres. He beheld a figure, terrible and awe-inspiring. It was the Great Dragon, with wings stretching across the sky and light streaming in all directions from its body. (The Mysteries taught that the Universal Life was personified as a dragon.) The Great Dragon called Hermes by name, and asked him why he thus meditated upon the World Mystery. Terrified by the spectacle, Hermes prostrated himself before the Dragon, beseeching it to reveal its identity. The great creature answered that it was Poimandres, the Mind of the Universe, the Creative Intelligence, and the Absolute Emperor of all. (Schure identifies Poimandres as the god Osiris.) Hermes then besought Poimandres to disclose the nature of the universe and the constitution of the gods. The Dragon acquiesced, bidding Trismegistus hold its image in his mind.

Hermes experienced the mind of God as a dragon in the same way Ekkehart Malotki describes "anthropomorphized snakes and other ophidian monsters, finally, would be hallucinated by the trancing subject in stage III, the deepest stage of the altered state of consciousness".  This should be regarded as an interesting theme rather than a universal experience because not everyone who opens up to contact with infinite, divine intelligence experiences it characterised as a dragon.

 Ideal figure of Hermes Trismegistus, copy of illustration from 'De Divinatione et Magicis Praestigiis' by Jean-Jacques Boissard, 1605, published late 19th Century (engraving). English School, (17th century) (after). Private Collection, The Stapleton Collection. Art, Fine Art. Ideal figure of Hermes Trismegistus, copy of illustration from 'De Divinatione et Magicis Praestigiis' by Jean-Jacques Boissard, 1605, published late 19th Century (engraving). English School, (17th century) (after). Private Collection, The Stapleton Collection. Art, Fine Art.

Ideal figure of Hermes Trismegistus, copy of illustration from 'De Divinatione et Magicis Praestigiis' by Jean-Jacques Boissard, 1605, published late 19th Century (engraving). The Stapleton Collection.



Through meditation, and various esoteric practices, such as Kundalini Yoga, Sahaja Yoga, Kriya Yoga and ingesting hallucinogenic substances the kundalini is awakened, and can rise up from the muladhara chakra through the central nadi, called sushumna, inside or alongside the spine and reaches the top of the head.  The progress of kundalini through the different chakras leads to different levels of awakening and mystical experience, until the kundalini finally reaches the top of the head, Sahasrara or crown chakra, producing an extremely profound mystical experience (realization of God). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kundalini

Swami Vivekananda in Chicago, September, 1893. On the left Vivekananda wrote in his own handwriting: "one infinite pure and holy – beyond thought beyond qualities I bow down to thee"

Swami Vivekananda in Chicago, September, 1893. On the left Vivekananda wrote in his own handwriting: "one infinite pure and holy – beyond thought beyond qualities I bow down to thee"

Swami Vivekananda  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swami_Vivekananda  described kundalini briefly in London during his lectures on Raja Yoga as follows:

According to the Yogis, there are two nerve currents in the spinal column, called Pingalâ and Idâ, and a hollow canal called Sushumnâ running through the spinal cord. At the lower end of the hollow canal is what the Yogis call the "Lotus of the Kundalini". They describe it as triangular in form in which, in the symbolical language of the Yogis, there is a power called the Kundalini, coiled up. When that Kundalini awakes, it tries to force a passage through this hollow canal, and as it rises step by step, as it were, layer after layer of the mind becomes open and all the different visions and wonderful powers come to the Yogi. When it reaches the brain, the Yogi is perfectly detached from the body and mind; the soul finds itself free. We know that the spinal cord is composed in a peculiar manner. If we take the figure eight horizontally (∞) there are two parts which are connected in the middle. Suppose you add eight after eight, piled one on top of the other, that will represent the spinal cord. The left is the Ida, the right Pingala, and that hollow canal which runs through the centre of the spinal cord is the Sushumna. Where the spinal cord ends in some of the lumbar vertebrae, a fine fibre issues downwards, and the canal runs up even within that fibre, only much finer. The canal is closed at the lower end, which is situated near what is called the sacral plexus, which, according to modern physiology, is triangular in form. The different plexuses that have their centres in the spinal canal can very well stand for the different "lotuses" of the Yogi.

When kundalini Shakti is conceived as a goddess, then, when it rises to the head, it unites itself with the Supreme Being (Lord Shiva). Then the aspirant becomes engrossed in deep meditation and infinite bliss.

Caduceus-kundalini

Kundalini symbology of the caduceus



The Ancient Egyptians used the Kundalini symbol (below) and the Church of England continues to use kundalini symbology today as can be seen by the bishop’s crosier designed by Paolo Guidi and made by Nicholas Plumber in 1992, for the Right Revd Dr Richard Chartres when he was consecrated Bishop of Stepney http://www.london.anglican.org/kb/1400th-anniversary

The Egyptian Staff of Osiris, dating back to ca. 1224 BCE in the Egyptian Museum in Turn and The Bishop of London’s crosier designed by Paolo Guidi, made by Nicholas Plumber, London 1992

Left - the Egyptian Staff of Osiris, dating back to ca. 1224 BCE in the Egyptian Museum in Turn. Right - the Bishop of London’s crosier designed by Paolo Guidi, made by Nicholas Plumber, London 1992.

 

Another example of caduceus symbology is the winged sun disc.  In Ancient Egypt, the symbol is attested from the Old Kingdom (Sneferu, 26th century BCE), often flanked on either side with a uraeus.  From roughly 2,000 BC, the symbol spread to the Levant and to Mesopotamia (Sumer, Akkadia, Babylon, and Assyria).  In Greece the winged sun is conventionally depicted as the knob of the Staff of Hermes, which reveals its esoteric identity as a symbol of rising Kundalini and third eye and crown chakra opening. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winged_sun

In the figure below the red disc between two eyes of Horus  represents the third eye (the eye of Horus on its own also represents the all seeing eye); when the red disc is accompanied by wings and a pair of cobras it symbolises an open sahasrara (crown) chakra.

Third eye winged sun disc crown caduceus

Red disc as symbol of: Top - third eye. Middle  -  open crown or sahasrara chakra.

 

Isis in her open winged stance emphasizes the link between winged sun disc and kundalini; the red disc above her head represents an open sahasrara chakra and the "horns" on either side represent  a pair of uraeuses.

open winged isis

Open Winged Isis



The crowns worn by both Ancient Egyptian Gods and Ancient Egyptian royalty are symbols of an open Sahasrara (crown) Chakra.

Egyptian crowns of gods and royals as a symbol of an open Sahasrara chakra

Egyptian crowns of royals (left) and gods Ra-Heru-Akhety and Sekhemet (top right) as a symbol of an open Sahasrara Chakra (bottom right)


Pharoah cobra head dress

Perhaps the most familiar Pharaoh head dress is better understood as serpent symbology rather than indicating an open crown chakra as it turns the Pharaoh himself into a representation of a cobra.

Pharaohs serpent head dress

Pharaohs serpent head dress



This profile image of Tutankhamun's funerary golden mask further emphasizes the point.

Snake Symbology of the Funerary Golden Mask of Tutankhamun

Snake Symbology of the Funerary Golden Mask of Tutankhamun

 

The lower half of Tutankhamun's coffin displays a pattern very similar to snake scales.

Pharoah as cobra

Pharaoh as cobra

Dendera Light

The image below which is depicted in the Hathor temple at the Dendera Temple complex  in Egypt is interpreted by mainstream Egyptologists to represent the ancient Egyptian creation myth and by ancient astronaut theorists to depict a light bulb.  From an esoteric point of view the image can be seen as a representation of the priesthood keeping the people ignorant of the enlightening psychoactive properties of snake venom and the lotus flower http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nymphaea_caerulea  A priest holds the lotus flower at an angle which keeps the area influenced by the flower and the snake above the head of the common man, who is seen kneeling in worship; the priest is aided by a figure sporting the symbol for an open crown chackra.  This explanation is supported by the fact that the images are hidden away in crypts underneath the temple where their secret message could be kept away from public view.

Dendera Light

Apep

Just as the Bible recognises the snake in the Garden of Eden as a symbol of great wisdom and simultaneously demonises it, so the Egyptian religion presented Uraeus as a symbol of divinity and Apep as a demon.  Apep was an evil god, the deification of darkness and chaos, and thus opponent of light and Ma'at (order/truth).  In a bid to explain certain natural phenomena it was said that occasionally Apep got the upper hand. The damage to order caused thunderstorms and earthquakes. Indeed: it was even thought that sometimes Apep actually managed to swallow the sun god Ra during the day, causing a solar eclipse, but since Ra's defenders quickly cut him free of Apep, the eclipse always ended within a few minutes. On the occasions when Apep was said to have been killed, he was able to return each night (since he lived in the world of the dead already). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apep

Set pictured on the Sun Barge of Ra fighting the serpent Apep

Set pictured on the Sun Barge of Ra fighting the serpent Apep

Ouroboros

The Ouroboros or Uroborus is an ancient symbol depicting a serpent or dragon eating its own tail.  The first known appearance of the ouroboros motif is in the Enigmatic Book of the Netherworld, an ancient Egyptian funerary text in KV62, the tomb of Tutankhamun, in the 14th century BC.

oroboros

Ouroboros in Tutankhamen's tomb



The Ouroboros often represents self-reflexivity or cyclicality, especially in the sense of something constantly re-creating itself, the eternal return, and other things perceived as cycles that begin anew as soon as they end (compare with phoenix). It can also represent the idea of primordial unity related to something (God) existing in or persisting from the beginning with such force or qualities it cannot be extinguished.

Ouroboros

Ouroboros.  1. Snakes will sometimes mistake their own tail for prey (left)  2. The Freemasonic ourboros shown features a crown denoting open crown chakra.

Snakes in the Old Testament

Some old testament myths such as the Fall of Man in the Garden of Eden and the Great Flood came from earlier Sumerian mythology http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F00E14FC385B17738DDDAC0994D0405B858DF1D3 However, Hebrew scholars added their own serpent mythology consistent with that used in Sumeria and Ancient Egypt, which should come as no surprise because according to the Bible Abraham, patriarch of the Jewish people, arrived in Hebron from Sumeria, via Egypt.

Fiery Serpent or Flying Saraph

The Flying Serpent, insignia of the Israeli Paratroopers Brigade

The Flying Saraph, insignia of the Israeli Paratroopers Brigade

A Fiery serpent (seraph or saraph, plural seraphim) occurs in the Pentateuch, to describe a species of vicious snakes whose poison burns upon contact.  These burning serpents infested the great and terrible place of the desert wilderness (Num.21:4-9; Deut.8:15).  The Hebrew word for poisonous literally means fiery, flaming or burning, as the burning sensation of a snake bite on human skin, a metaphor for the fiery anger of God (Numbers 11:1).  The Book of Isaiah expounds on the description of these fiery serpents as flying saraphs, or flying dragons, in the land of trouble and anguish (Isaiah 30:6). Isaiah indicates that these saraphs are comparable to vipers, worse than ordinary serpents (Isaiah 14:29). The prophet Isaiah also sees a vision of seraphim, in the Temple itself: but these are divine agents, with wings and human faces, and are probably not to be interpreted as serpent-like so much as flame-like. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serpent_%28Bible%29

Serpent of Bronze

moses serpent pole

Moses with the bronze serpent on a pole

In the Book of Numbers, while Moses was in the wilderness, he mounted a serpent of bronze on a pole that functioned as a cure against the bite of the seraphim, the burning ones (Numbers 21:4-9).  The phrase in Num.21:9, "a serpent of bronze," is a wordplay as serpent (nehash) and bronze (nehoshet) are closely related in Hebrew: nehash nehoshet.  The plague of serpents remained an ongoing threat to the community and the raised bronze serpent was an ongoing reminder to each individual for the need to turn to the healing power of God.

In this myth Moses is the Shaman who uses the snake as a symbol of the way to God but keeps the secret of altered states of consciousness and divine realization from snake venom to himself.  Ironically he uses this symbol to protect against the reality of the bite from poisonous snakes which can induce the very hallucinations he wishes to avoid for his followers. http://www.medtox.org.uk/snakebite.html

In 2 Kings 18:4, a bronze serpent, alleged to be the one Moses made, was kept in Jerusalem's Templesanctuary.  The Israelites began to worship the object as an idol or image of God, by offering sacrifices and burning incense to it, until Hezekiah was made King. Hezekiah referred to it as Nehushtan and had tore it down.

This myth tells followers and adepts alike that the people must obey only God (who symbolises the ruling elite) and must never return to worshiping the serpent (which symbolises shamanism).

The Gorgon

The name Gorgon derives from the ancient Greek word gorgós, which means "dreadful." While descriptions of Gorgons vary across Greek literature, the term commonly refers to any of three sisters who had hair of living, venomous snakes, and a horrifying visage that turned those who beheld her to stone. Traditionally, while two of the Gorgons were immortal, Stheno and Euryale, their sister Medusa was not, and she was slain by the mythical demigod and hero Perseus.  Gorgons appeared in the earliest of written records of Ancient Greek religious beliefs such as those of Homer, which may date to as early as 1194–1184 BCE. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gorgon  While the common Greek was taught that Gorgons were to be feared, the esoteric message is revealed in the statue below by the entwined snakes of the caduceus on the Gorgon's belly which shows that the Gorgon represents enlightenment.

Gorgon from the temple at Corfu. She has serpents in her hair, wrapped around her waist, and coiling out from her body

Gorgon from the temple at Corfu. She has serpents in her hair, wrapped around her waist, and coiling out form her body

Serpents and Healing

World Health Organization Rod of Asclepius

Bronze serpent on a pole without Moses

Today the Rod of Asclepius http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rod_of_Asclepius is used by those in charge of global governance on their World Health Organisation logo as a sign of healing, which they tell us, originated in Ancient Greece no earlier than 800 BCE.  There is, of course, no mention of the esoteric root of snakes in shamanism and how the shaman is the ancestor of both priests and modern medicine men or doctors http://www.cnsproductions.com/pdf/LaBarre.pdf

Fortunately for the powers that be, they can point to a genuine pedigree of snakes being used for purely medicinal, rather than spiritual, purposes.  According to ancient Greek historians, snake-handling shamans of the Agari and other Scythian tribes of the Black Sea and Caucasus possessed the secret of milking snake venom to make antidotes and medicines.  An astonishing medical milestone, carried out by Mithradates’ Scythian doctors, was reported by Appian, a Greek historian of the Mithradatic Wars. Their secret knowledge of venom’s beneficial powers saved Mithradates’ life on the battlefield and anticipated modern scientific discoveries by more than 2,000 years when they used steppe viper venom as a coagulant to prevent severe hemorrhaging from a sword wound http://www.wondersandmarvels.com/2011/11/the-uses-of-snake-venom-in-antiquity.html

In traditional Chinese medicine (practiced from as early as 1,400 BCE) the cobra is a prime source of healing for angina problems, blood pressure, strokes and many other illnesses. http://markbennis.hubpages.com/hub/Hidden-Mysteries-of-the-Snake-Cults-and-the-Healing-Power-of-the-Serpent

Today poisonous snakes are the prized research animals for some scientists searching for better treatments for such disorders as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease and cancer. http://science.education.nih.gov/animalresearch.nsf/Story1/Making+Medicines+from+Poisonous+Snakes Some one should tell those cancer researchers about cannabinoids http://www.cannabisnews.org/cannabinoids-and-cancer/2013/03/28

Orphic Egg

Jacob Bryant's Orphic Egg (1774)

Jacob Bryant's Orphic Egg (1774)

The Orphic Egg, an egg with a snake wound around it from bottom to top, is the foremost symbol of the Orphic Mysteries which were named after Orpheus, a legendary singer in Greek myth. He was said to be able to charm animals, stones, and trees by his songs. The Greeks borrowed ancient rituals and named them after Orpheus, who became the figurehead for a mystery religion promising life after death and the inspiration of divine power.

Orpheus was said to have invented the Mysteries of Dionysus.  Poetry containing distinctly Orphic beliefs has been traced back to the 6th century BCE or at least 5th century BCE, and graffiti of the 5th century BC apparently refers to "Orphics". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orphism_%28religion%29

In the esoteric tradition the Orphic Egg represents the soul of the philosopher and the serpent symbolises the Mysteries. The egg signifies the Cosmos as encircled by the fiery Creative Spirit. http://www.examiner.com/article/the-orphic-egg-decoded

Snakes in the New Testament

There are numerous mentions of snakes in the New Testament, which continue the theme Old Testament symbology. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serpent_%28Bible%29

Serpents in the Gospels

The Gospels continue the traditional Old Testament dualistic presentation of serpents being both bad (sinful and dangerous) and good (wise).   In the Gospel of Matthew, John the Baptist calls the Pharisees and Saducees, who were visiting him, a "brood of vipers" (Matthew 3:7).  Jesus also uses this imagery, observing: "Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of Gehenna?" (Matthew 23:33). Alternatively, Jesus presents the snake as a symbol of wisdom when sending out the Twelve Apostles.  Jesus exhorted them, "Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves" (Matthew 10:16).

In the Gospel of John, Jesus made mention of the Mosaic serpent when he foretold his crucifixion to a Jewish teacher.  Jesus compared the act of raising up the Mosaic serpent on a pole, with the raising up of the Son of Man on a cross (John 3:14-15).  Comparing Jesus on a cross to a snake on a pole makes perfect sense when one compares hallucinogenic snake venom as the shamanic way to realize god with the bible text  "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me" (John 14:6).

Of the Brazen Serpent Monument atop Mount Nebo, Scott Warren writes "I love this symbolism. We have been infected with the poison of the serpent’s lies but when we look upon Jesus on the cross we can be forgiven and live." http://kneelatthecross.com/2010/05/10/the-gospel-of-john-221-315/ which demonstrates just how badly Christians have been duped.

Mount Nebo Sculpture

According to the final chapter of Deuteronomy, Moses ascended Mount Nebo to view the Land of Israel: "And Moses went up from the plains of Moab to Mount Nebo, the top of Pisgah, which is opposite Jericho." (Deuteronomy 34:1). The Brazen Serpent Monument atop Mount Nebo was created by Italian artist Giovanni Fantoni. It is symbolic of the bronze serpent created by Moses in the wilderness (Numbers 21:4–9) and the cross upon which Jesus was crucified (John 3:14).

 

Temptation of the Christ

In the temptation of Christ, the Devil cites Psalm 91:11-12 with, "for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in [their] hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone." (Matthew 4:6) Then he cuts off before the prophetic verse 13 of Psalms 91, "Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon (tanniyn) shalt thou trample under feet." (Psalm 91:13 KJV)

The Serpent in Psalm 91:13 is identified as Satan by Christians: "super aspidem et basiliscum calcabis conculcabis leonem et draconem" in the Latin Vulgate http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vulgate , literally "The asp and the basilisk you will trample under foot; you will tread on the lion and the dragon".  This passage is commonly interpreted by Christians, as a reference to Christ defeating and triumphing over Satan.  The passage led to the Late Antique and Early Medieval iconography of Christ treading on the beasts, in which two beasts are often shown, usually the lion and snake or dragon, and sometimes four, which are normally the lion, dragon, asp (snake) and basilisk (which was depicted with varying characteristics) of the Vulgate.  According to Cassiodorus and Bede in their commentaries on Psalm 91 all represent the devil.  The serpent is often shown curled round the foot of the cross in depictions of the Crucifixion of Jesus from Carolingian art until about the 13th century; often it is shown as dead. The Crucifixion was regarded as the fulfillment of God's curse on the Serpent in Genesis 3:15.  Sometimes it is pierced by the cross and in one ivory is biting Christ's heel, as in the curse. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serpent_%28Bible%29#New_Testament

Freiburg Crux Snake

Christ is crucified over a dead snake, representing Christianity's victory over shamanism? Crystal intaglio, c.883-915, from the Augustiner Museum in Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany

Virgin Mary Treading on a Snake

In Christian art the Virgin Mary is often depicted standing on a snake on top of a globe (the earth).  The theme of Christian characters opposing the snake is all too familiar but why the Virgin Mary in particular?  The answer lies in astrology, which is secretly written into bible texts, just like shamanism.  In the early hours of Christmas morning in the Northern Hemisphere the constellation Virgo (the Virgin) rises above the eastern horizon where she symbolically gives birth to the sun.  Following Virgo over the eastern horizon is the snake's head of the Serpens constellation, therefore in astrological symbology the virgin rises above the earth and steps on the head of snake as she prepares to give birth to her son. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BpoBXDosk-M

Various Virgin Marys standing on various snakes

Various Virgin Marys standing on various snakes

Saint Patrick

In the 5th century Saint Patrick is said to have driven the snakes out of Eire when he converted the country to Christianity.  However, all evidence suggests that post-glacial Ireland never had snakes, as on insular New Zealand, Iceland, Greenland and Antarctica so far, no serpent has successfully migrated across the open ocean to a new terrestrial home http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Patrick#St._Patrick_banishes_all_snakes_from_Ireland The snakes in this story are symbols and they represents pre-christian shamanic culture.  The sculpture below (location unknown) demonstrates very clearly the esoteric understanding of events.  Athena (identified by her olive branch) and Prometheus http://www.the-big-picture.org.uk/wp/?page_id=31 are both banished along with a pair of snakes.  Both Athena and Prometheus are mystery school symbols of knowledge or wisdom so the sculpture shows Christianity banishing ancient shamanic wisdom from Eire.

saint_patrick_snake

Saint Patrick banishing ancient shamanic wisdom from Eire

Knights Templar

When the Knights Templar went crusading to Jerusalem early in the 12th century, they discovered that there were no ruins of Solomon's Temple under Temple Mount because the story of Solomon is an allegory and the Temple is a symbol of wisdom which never existed as a building http://www.trans4mind.com/counterpoint/index-esoteric/gardiner2.shtml.  Having worked out that the temple was a myth they went on to discover the truth about organised religion and shamanism.  After the Knights Templar were dissolved 1312 they formed an underground secret society in Scotland and England, which emerged as the Freemasons  in the late 16th century http://www.the-big-picture.org.uk/wp/?page_id=3851.  A Knights Templar commandery is traditionally the final body that a member joins in the York Rite after the chapter of Royal Arch Masons and a council of Royal & Select Masters  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knights_Templar_%28Freemasonry%29#Knights_Templar_as_a_part_of_the_York_Rite .  The Freemasonic "jewel" below is a Knights Templar badge displaying the now familiar snake on a cross.

Knights Templar Jewel

Knights Templar Jewel

Biscione

The Biscione, also known as the Vipera (‘viper’ or in Milanese as the Bissa), is a heraldic charge showing a crowned serpent with a human; usually a child and sometimes described as a Moor in its mouth. It has been the emblem of the Italian Visconti family, rulers of Milan, for around a thousand years.  The biscione appears also in the coats of arms of the House of Sforza.  It has been claimed that the image was taken from the coat of arms of a Saracen killed by Ottone Visconti during the Crusades http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biscione  Of note is that Ottone Visconti retired to the Abbey of Clairvaux http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ottone_Visconti, which was founded in 1115 by St. Bernard  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abbey_of_Clairvaux who was the patron of the Knights Templar http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knights_Templar.  The popular belief about Biscione is that the viper is eating the human, but the viper wears a crown to signify open crown chakra and the esoteric symbolism is likely to be of the person being disgorged (as was Jason by the Colchian Dragon  http://www.theoi.com/Ther/DrakonKholkikos.html ) signifying that he or she is being born again after having received gnosis, courtesy of the serpents venom.

biscione at milan central station

Biscione at Milan central station

Nicolas Flamel

Nicolas Flamel (ca 1330 – Paris, March 22, 1418) was a successful French scrivener and manuscript-seller. After his death Flamel developed a reputation as an alchemist, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nicolas_Flamel the second illustration in Flamel's codex showed "a cross, where a snake was fastened and crucified".  The cross is a T-shaped one known as the Cross Of Tau, which is thought to have originated with the Egyptians http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cross_of_Tau . 33rd Degree Freemason Manly P. Hall writes that when a king was initiated into the Egyptian mysteries a tau was placed against his lips http://www.sacred-texts.com/eso/sta/sta04.htm. The Flamel codex refers to the mystical and alchemical symbol depicted as a cross with a snake or serpent draped about it, as well as detached wings and a crown above it, which demonstrates the alchemical (mystery school) understanding that the esoteric meaning of a crown is a symbol for an open Sahasrara (crown) Chakra and that the serpent provides a way to God.

Flamel snake cross crown wings

Left - crucified snake, right - The Flamel


Tarot Cards

The first known documented tarot cards were created between 1430 and 1450 in Milan, Ferrara and Bologna in northern Italy when additional trump cards with allegorical illustrations were added to the common four-suit pack.   The oldest surviving tarot cards are from fifteen fragmented decks painted in the mid 15th century for the Visconti-Sforza family, the rulers of Milan.  Special motifs on cards added to regular packs show philosophical, social, poetical, astronomical, and heraldic ideas and Roman/Greek/Babylonian heroes. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarot  Of course for the ruling families who produced these cards they had an esoteric meaning.

According to Wkipedia The World tarot card represents an ending to a cycle of life, a pause in life before the next big cycle beginning with the fool.   The figure is at once male and female, above and below, suspended between the heavens and the earth.  It is completeness. It is also said to represent cosmic consciousness; the potential of perfect union with the One Power of the universe (God).  It tells us full happiness is also to give back to the world, sharing what we have learned or gained http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_World_%28Tarot_card%29.  In the example shown below esoteric serpent symbols are shown "sub rosa" (under the rose) an expression which is used in English to denote secrecy or confidentiality.  The rose is also an esoteric symbol of Rosicrucianism.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sub_rosa

Tarot World Card

Tarot World Card

Thalers

The 16th century German thaler (silver coin) below employs the crucifixion on one side and a snake on a cross on the other, again suggesting that Jesus is a symbol for the snake - the way to God.

jesus snake cross coin

Thaler by Hieronymus Magdeburger, Germany late 16th century.

Elizabeth I

In March 2010 the BBC reported

"A mysterious image of a coiled snake has appeared in a 16th century painting of Queen Elizabeth I, the National Portrait Gallery has said.  The Tudor queen was depicted with the snake clasped in her fingers in an original version of the work, but it was replaced with a bunch of roses.  The paint has deteriorated over the years to reveal the serpent's outline."

"Dr Tarnya Cooper, of the Making Art in Tudor Britain project, said:... 'The queen certainly owned jewellery and costume including emblems of serpents, which were probably understood as a symbol of wisdom.'" http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/arts_and_culture/8550119.stm

Of course two of Elizabeth's courtiers John Dee http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Dee and Francis Bacon http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Bacon were famous students of the occult.

elizabeth 1 snake

Elizabeth 1 snake

Baphomet

Baphomet  is a supposed pagan deity (i.e., a product of Christian folklore concerning pre-christian shamanic culture), revived in the 19th century as a figure of occultism. It first appeared in 11th and 12th century Latin and Provençal as a corruption of Mahomet, the Latinisation of Muhammad, but later it appeared as a term for a pagan idol in trial transcripts of the Inquisition of the Knights Templar in the early 14th century. The name first came into popular English-speaking consciousness in the 19th century, with debate and speculation on the reasons for the suppression of the Templars.  Since 1855, the name Baphomet has been associated with a Sabbatic Goat image drawn by Eliphas Lévi. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baphomet

Most people would regard Levi's image of Bapomet as a dreadful representation of devil worship.  However just as for the Gorgon of ancient Greece, the esoteric message is revealed by the presence of the caduceus on Baphomet's belly (and also its wings) which shows that Baphomet represents enlightenment which the common man must be prevented from achieving.  In fact Baphomet represents a number of esoteric principles including duality signified by the raising of one arm and the downward gesture of the other.

Baphomet

Baphomet

The Society of Book and Snake

The Society of Book and Snake is the fourth oldest secret society at Yale University. It was founded at the Sheffield Scientific School in 1863 as a three-year society bearing the Greek letters Sigma Delta Chi http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_and_Snake Outside the society's tomb the railings are decorated with kundalini snakes and the torch of Prometheus.

caduceus book and snake

The Caduceus Outside The Book And Snake Tomb

Salvation Army

The Army was founded in 1865 in London by one-time Methodist minister William Booth.  Whomever was responsible for designing the organisation's logo knew a bit about astrotheology and shamanism as demonstrated by the inclusion of a crown, sun symbology and a snake-like "S" on the cross.

salvation army

salvation army

Alpha Romeo

In 1910 the Alpha Romeo company combined the Biscione with the flag of the Knights Templar, thus proclaiming the eosteric knowledge of their owners who almost certainly include members of the Visconti family.

alpha romeo badge

Alpha Romeo Badge


Narcotic!

In an ironic piece of US government propaganda snakes were used to represent the evil side of drugs the 1933 film Narcoti!  Dwain Esper inserted odd shots for symbolism (such as poisonous snakes, skunks and such near the end) http://www.trendx.info/udnmovies3/transform?movieid=tt0121587&title=Narcotic-%281933%29-Torrent-Download-dvdrip-brrip-720p-1080p-subs-bluray-3d

Narcotic

Snake scene from Narcotic!

US Senate

In 1949 the architect of the US Capitol began extensive remodeling in the Senate Chamber.  As part of this project, Maryland sculptor Lee Lawrie, one of the premier American artists of his day, was selected to design relief panels for placement above the three entrance doors in the Chamber.  Above the west entrance in the Senate Chamber is a carved marble relief entitled Courage, depicting a male warrior locked in battle with a serpent. Sculptor Lee Lawrie, the designer of the panel, described the imagery in a 1951 letter to Architect of the Capitol David Lynn: "Courage symbolizes our nation, which unflinchingly battles Evil and vanquishes it. I used the biblical symbol for Evil, the serpent." http://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/art/artifact/Sculpture_25_00008.htm#bio  For those with esoteric knowledge the sculpture symbolises the continued war on spirituality by the nations rulers.

courage

Courage

Narcotics: Pit of Dispair

In another ironic piece of US government propaganda a cobra was used in the title frame of the 1967 film Narcotics: Pit of Despair, which follows a boy from his introduction to drug usage to his state of drug dependency.  The film frighteningly depicts his addiction and encourages abstinence from all drugs.  According to the film, marijuana is a gateway drug that leads to harder drugs: chiefly heroin.  Drug dependency destroys lives. Abuse leads to medical problems and run-ins with the police.  The main character, Hank, learns this first hand, and is sentenced to rehab. After his release, Hank visits an old friend who uses drugs, only to learn that there is no end to his addiction.   http://www.amazon.com/Narcotics-Despair-Abuse-Rehabilitation-Video/dp/B001DHO7FS

narcotics pit of dispair

Narcotics Pit of Despair

Lair of the White Worm

Ken Russell used esoteric imagery of Jesus on the cross with a snake in his 1988 film Lair of The White Worm about a vampire serpent in Derbyshire http://zombievamp.blogspot.co.uk/2008/11/50-lair-of-white-worm-ken-russell-1988.html  The most significant fact about the vampire, that he is able to go on "living" beyond mortal death, and the myths concerning his origin and the articles connected with him indicated a very strong connection between the vampire and the serpent.  http://kekrops.tripod.com/Mythology_Vampire.html

Lair of the White Worm

Lair of the White Worm

Britney Spears

The Illuminati do like to use the music industry for the purpose of creating in jokes.  Britney Spears' performance of the song I'm A Slave 4 U at the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards in New York City was highly criticized by animal rights group PETA for the inclusion of exotic animals (A tiger and an albino python).  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o6hZ7MW_bHc   For those in the know the song was a blatant reference to significance of defeating shamanic culture in order to enslave the masses.  For those who can bear to watch, the video is included below.

References