Lucifer

Abstract

Lucifer is a fire god. In difference to theological and archetypical, this is a materialist interpretation. Origin of human sacrifice (burnt offering to God) is in the slash-and-burn agriculture from the Neolithic.

Introduction

Myth is equated with incorrect and harmful story that was (or supposed to be) replaced by science. Darwin made myth into excess, byproduct, indirect consequence of our intelligence [1]. But when we take sacrifice into account agreeing with Darwin becomes both inevitable and impossible. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence" said Carl Sagan [2]. What is more extraordinary than claiming that killing and burning children was a cognitive mistake, a myth people believed in? We end up circumventing the problem of sacrifice by testing our minds to prove how insane we can be. Insanity, the answer for the myth, is at least incorrect if not completely unscientific - it's the myth itself. Agreeing with Darwin here means finding the material origins in history from which sacrifice is the direct consequence. Dealing directly with the problem of sacrifice asks us to not dismiss but to engage the myth.

Prometheus is already connected to Satan. This is also extended to Loki and other trickster gods [3]. Maybe most famous connection of Lucifer and Prometheus is made by John Milton in Paradise Lost. Less known are those under the influence of Christianity and Islam. One of them, for example, is Eshu of Yoruba people from western Nigeria [4]. Usual critique is that traditional deities are not pure evil, they are more complex. Isaiah and Ezekiel have described Devil with many characteristics and never just evil [5]. It is not hard to point out to the contradictions in the Bible as it is hard to understand them. Satan is definitely the most misunderstood and misused character. In this essay I will also write about subjects related to Satanism.

Content

1. Earth Fire and Hell Fire
2. Origin of Human Sacrifice
3. Devils and Monkey-gods
4. Church Burnings and Anti-Clericalism
5. Black Art
6. Satan's Fiction

1. Earth Fire and Hell Fire

What is fire? Fire is usually tautologically defined in dictionaries. So I suggest two books for a start: The Psychoanalysis of Fire by Gaston Bachelard and Fire: A Brief History by Stephen J. Pyne.

Fire, (has) a flame that produces light and heat. Light and heat are not fire but properties of fire. All objects (above absolute zero temperature) emit heat (radiation). What we usually mean by light is just a visible part of electromagnetic radiation [6]. Falling in love with one Croatian expression is literally translated "inflaming oneself" or "setting oneself on fire" (zapaliti se). Love (and reason) is parabolic, metaphorical fire.

When we think about natural fires we think of a forest fire caused by lightning. Forest is a fuel, lightning is a source of heat and mixed with oxygen it creates fire. Nature is a human construct. From where fire energy (light and heat), lightning charge and oxygen come from? Forest fire energy comes from the Sun that was contained by the photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is manufacture of organic molecules from inorganic molecules. Virtually all energy enters the biosphere this way [7]. Sun, making atmosphere unstable, is also responsible for the lightning. The thunderstorm forms by hot air rising from the ground heated by the Sun. Lightning charge is created by updraft (upward current of warm, moist air) and then downdraft (downward current of air) movement in the cumulonimbus. The air around a bolt of lightning is five times as hot as the surface of the sun. Things are still unclear about lightning formation [8]. The first fires started around 500 million years ago after the first (aerobic) photosynthesis around 1.3 billion years ago. Before photosynthesis Earth atmosphere had no free oxygen. Free oxygen is toxic to anaerobic organisms and may have caused their extinction in Oxygen Catastrophe [9] around 2.4 billion years ago.

"Forests are the lungs of the earth" is the first myth here. Myth here is a widespread belief that is scientifically incorrect. Respiration (breathing) is the opposite process from photosynthesis. Respiration is release of energy from organic compounds [10]. Chemistry of breathing is chemistry of burning.

Richard Feynman said that "trees come out of the air". This is counterintuitive but true [11]. Cellulose (C6H10O5) compound that wood is made of comes from carbon dioxide (CO2) and water (H2O) (also comes from the air). If we could paint hydrogen (H) cyan, oxygen (O) magenta and carbon (C) yellow, use ratio in molecules as intensity of each color and fast forward the time formation of the forest - it would look like blue falls from the sky and is pumped from the roots up, combined from the red around the leaves form a green forest shape. It would look like the air is "concretizing" into the forest. Chemical process of forest burning is fast backward "deconcretization". Other elements, fertilizers, are necessary for forest growth, about this more in second chapter. NASA made an experiment with candle flame in microgravity and observed that "where convective flows are absent, the flame is spherical, soot-free, and blue." [12]

Hell [13] is a place outside Jerusalem called Gehenna. There are many stores about what was burned there, from criminals to garbage. One of them is that this was place where children were sacrificed to Moloch (p.406-DM) Hell in underground lacks oxygen, hell in space lacks oxygen also, but if it didn't lack, it would look much more scary with all the blue bubbles.


2. Origin of Human Sacrifice

Libations [14] for the ancestral spirits, cannibalism and capital punishment are significantly different from burning children as offering to God. Neurobiological model of comparative mythology, as representative of testable (natural) science, can't offer much. Synesthesia [15] explanation would need to make gigantic leaps from one to the other types of practices. Anthropomorphism explains how we attributed human characteristic to natural phenomena, but this is self-evident. Here is a historical materialist [16] explanation.

Neolithic era started some 10-12 thousand years ago as hunter-gatherers started to domesticate plant and animal life. It had multiple centers of origin (Figure 1, 2, 3). Domestication was unpremeditated, selective protection of beneficiary plants and animals happened spontaneously. Selective protection, for example, would be not cutting the tree that will grow fruit when building a tent. Neolithic revolution was a very slow transition to agriculture; food produced (by agriculture) must be over 50% of food consumed [17]. It happened in privileged areas that had enough species to domesticate and it happened faster in areas that had even more species to domesticate. For example cows, horses, sheep, goats and pigs made great advantage for Eurasia [18]. There are other geographic factors (beside availability of domestic-able-species) like the fertility and workability of land. Also lack of exchange of ideas and technology was detrimental to isolated areas. Surplus in food enabled larger populations (Figure 4) and professions untied to food production; art, politics development and so on.

Slash-and-burn agriculture is somewhat lost in collective memory. It is surprising given that the "slash-and-burn agriculture have been among the most extensive and most long-lasting that ever existed" (p.126-HWA). This was the first type of agriculture that was both widespread and extensive (Figure 5)."[F]irst forms of agriculture were most probably practiced in the areas around dwellings and on alluvial deposits resulting from receding flood waters, that is, on ground already fertilized and requiring hardly any clearing." (p.22-HWA) "Slash-and-burn agriculture is practiced in diverse wooded environments: amid mature trees, in a copse, shrubby or bushy thickets, wooded savanna, etc. It is established on terrains previously cleared by grubbing, that is, cutting followed by burning but without removing the stumps. The parcels thus cleared are only cultivated for one, two, or three years, rarely more, after which they are abandoned to return to their wooded wild state for one or more decades, before being cleared."(p.101-HWA) Ash is the fertilizer (also, ordinary deposits of minerals and other). This type of agriculture was a well organized system (Figure 6, 7, 8) that lasted for thousands of years and was spread across the world. It has its limitations and leads to deforestation and even desertification. It was replaced by other (not always better) systems but in some areas it still persists.

Sacrifice for Neolithic farmers was somewhat reasonable observation that came from practice. It looked like the burnt vegetation (sacrifice) gave fertility to the land: the smoke rises up and goes to heavens. We need to go into mythology to prove this. Myth here is useful for understanding our past and beliefs of our ancestors. Major myths makes thing more clear than minor myths and rituals that include fire, smoke and ash. James G. Frazer in Golden Bough has collected much material, mostly about practices, for example: "Pawnees [North America] annually sacrificed a human victim in spring when they sowed their fields. The sacrifice was believed to have been enjoined on them by the Morning Star, or by a certain bird which the Morning Star had sent to them as its messenger. The bird was stuffed and preserved as a powerful talisman. They thought that an omission of this sacrifice would be followed by the total failure of the crops of maize, beans, and pumpkins."(p.381-GB)

Best example of a major myth is Agni: "Agni (fire) In Hindu mythology, the fire god. Fire and its relation to sacrifice was a dominant feature of the fire cult during Vedic times. The flames and the aroma of the sacrifice rose into the sky and were thus assumed to be the most effective way to reach the all-powerful beings. In the sacred Indian collection of hymns the Rig-Veda, Agni has more hymns addressed to him than has any other god except the storm god, Indra. Agni is called the messenger and mediator between heaven and earth, announcing to the gods the hymns sung to them and conveying offerings of their worshippers. He invited the worshippers by his crackling flames, bringing fire down on the sacrifice. The Hindu epic poem The Mahabharata tells how Agni, having devoured too many offerings, lost his power. To regain his strength he wanted to consume a whole forest. At first Indra prevented him, but eventually Agni tricked Indra and accomplished his task."(p.35-FFE)

In the one of The Mixtec (A civilization in southwestern Mexico, predating the Toltec) creation stories "after the Earth had been formed, a deer god and deer goddess - in the form of humans - were born. Together they built a beautiful place on a mountain cliff. On top of the mountain, they created the heavens. Eventually they had two sons who could change themselves into several forms - eagle, serpent, or human. One day, these boys used some tobacco to make a small fire. The smoke from the fire was sent up to the mountaintop as a gift to the gods. The boys continued to live happily, growing food for themselves, offering gifts to the gods, and praying regularly that the world would always be as they knew it-with healthy crops and water pooled in certain places. To make their prayers stronger, they sprinkled their offerings with blood. Nonetheless a great flood came. These two boys were not the only children of the deer gods - the gods had produced other human children as well - but all the children were lost when the great flood covered the land. When the waters receded, the creator god remade the heavens and Earth and put people on Earth to live. The first people he made were the Mixtec."(p.86-SMA)

We find that fire is associated with creation of vegetation in the Makoni (Zimbabwe) creation story. "In the beginning, Maori, the Supreme God and Creator, made the first man and called him Mwuetsi, "Moon." Maori placed Mwuetsi at the bottom of a lake (the sea in one version of the legend) and gave him a ngona horn (an antelope horn symbolic of the crescent Moon) filled with ngona oil. Mwuetsi begged Maori to let him live on Earth. Maori allowed him to do so but warned him that he would regret it; the end would be his death. At that time Earth was cold and empty; there were no trees, plants of any kind, or animals. When Mwuetsi complained about this condition, Maori gave him a maiden to be his wife for two years - Massassi, the Morning Star (the morning phase of the planet Venus). Massassi made a fire with fire-making tools Maori had given her. Then she and Mwuetsi lay down to sleep. Mwuetsi did not know why Maori had given him this woman. He touched the ngona oil with his finger and then touched Massassi with the same finger, symbolically anointing her. The next morning, Massassi began to give birth to grasses, bushes, other plants, and trees until they covered the entire Earth."(p.78-AMS)

Defining sacrifice is problematic because of its abstract meaning that has developed from the original, literal meaning. Abstract sacrifice can be any practice where one expects something in return. Defining sacrifice has the moralistic temptation to put your enemies into this irrational practice. Or, on the other hand, temptation to rationalize sacrifice confirming your own world view.

Keeping in the mind the origin of sacrifice makes defining more easily. It makes it hard knowing how sacrifice of vegetation evolved to sacrifice of humans. To what extend sacrifice evolved require clear criteria and evidence - it is not arbitrary.

Knowing the slash-and-burn agricultural origins and the mythological interpretation we can conclude one thing for sure: Motivation for sacrifice is wealth. This is the first criteria. Wealth for Neolithic farmer meant abundant harvest. Wealth is later associated with traders and cities. Eshu is the protector of crossroads, the common trading places. Major crossroads evolved into town square, market, agora. This are places where people of different languages meet and that explains the stories like Tower of Babel. Motivations evolved over time from wealth into well-being. How do we determine motives if they aren't evident in prayers, songs, stories or religious texts? No way. Evidence must be a clear statement from the people who practice sacrifice. For example, first prayer from Rig Veda:

"1. I Laud Agni, the chosen Priest, God, minister of sacrifice, The hotar, lavishest of wealth. 2. Worthy is Agni to be praised by living as by ancient seers. He shall bring hitherward the Gods. 3. Through Agni man obtaineth wealth, yea, plenty waxing day by day, Most rich in heroes, glorious. 4. Agni, the perfect sacrifice which thou encompassest about Verily goeth to the Gods. 5. May Agni, sapient-minded Priest, truthful, most gloriously great, The God, come hither with the Gods. 6. Whatever blessing, Agni, thou wilt grant unto thy worshipper, That, Angiras, is indeed thy truth. 7. To thee, dispeller of the night, O Agni, day by day with prayer Bringing thee reverence, we come 8. Ruler of sacrifices, guard of Law eternal, radiant One, Increasing in thine own abode. 9. Be to us easy of approach, even as a father to his son: Agni, be with us for our weal."[19] (translation by Ralph T.H. Griffith, 1896)

The second criteria is proper offering. Leviticus and Yajna describe how to sacrifice in detail. Sacrifices are roughly separated for daily performance and for the particular purpose. In general, offerings are personal or communal possessions, from organic origins that are burned. In practice of Aztecs, only some sacrifices are burned, offered children are eaten, and captives are sacrifices. This puts in question the sincerity of sacrifice or the very criteria of proper offering. Sincerity is in the tradition and calendar ruled sacrifice. Again, sacred tests are the best criteria for proper offering.

Military destruction, including terrorism doesn't qualify as sacrifice without the first criteria and second criteria.

In rent, interest or profit investment is not destroyed. Capitalism can be only parabolically connected with sacrifice. More about this is in the last chapter.

Was holocaust modern mass sacrifice? All (holos) is burned (caustos). Adolf Hitler wanted to pose himself on every nation except on the Jews - whom he wanted to destroy. Given the fact that Jews were killed and burned qualifies for second criteria. First criteria is lacking, it seems that Hitler didn't believe that killing Jews would be rewarded by God literally. But the whole Aryan mythology [20] from the 19. century, that was created to justify colonial powers, also prepared the terrain and made Hitler a possibility. This makes holocaust the best candidate for modern mass sacrifice resembling Aztecs sacrifices.

Satanism in a nutshell is a sacrificial relation to God.

There is also a very important philosophical aspect of sacrificing covered by Dennis King Keenan in his work The Question of Sacrifice. Keenan writes about abstract sacrifice which he calls economical sacrifice and aneconomical sacrifice which is a paradoxical "sacrifice of (economical) sacrifice". I agree with Chomsky [21], this is not hard, natural, testable science and definitely not something I could explain to a twelve year old in five minutes. Nevertheless, sacrifice of sacrifice, in language of Lacanian psychoanalysis, is "subjective destitution" that is, being separated from, not alienated in/by, the symbolic order (p.113). Keenan examples are:" (1) Antigone's suicidal "No!" to Creon's command to leave the body of her brother Polynices unburied, (2) Abraham's binding (and intention to sacrifice) his son Isaac in unconditional obedience to the command of God, (3) the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and (4) St. Paul's reading of agape (love) as the spontaneous enjoyment of doing one's duty without expectation of a reward."(p.7) I'll try to make it more a 12-year-old-thing in the Book of Job and Jesus in the Wilderness in the next chapter.


3.Devils and Monkey-gods

Tricksters tales are found around the world. "The oldest trick in the book" is the theft of fire. The Book of Genesis doesn't mentions Satan but he can be connected in at least two ways (excluding the Bible reference). The Book of Revelation is one of the last retelling of Satan myth and Isaiah and Ezekiel are in the middle. In the Book of Job and Jesus in the Wilderness Satan plays a classical trickster.

Lucifer translated from Latin means the Morning Star. Dogon (Mali) and Egyptian mythology suggest that Sirius, rather than Venus is the Morning Star. Sirius "sets in the evening sky in mid-June, shortly before the rainy season begins. Its disappearance signals the planting season. Po [grain] is scattered rather than planted; its scattering seeds the fields with new life, just as po tolois [Sirius B] believed to seed the Earth with new life. Sirius reappears as a morning star during the rainy season, when the new crops are growing. For the Dogon, the harvesting of the po crop is seen as a sacrifice the grain makes: Its death gives humans life and ensures its own rebirth the next growing season. "(p.36-AMS) Sirius "was represented by a goddess known to the Egyptians as Sopdet and to the Greeks as Sothis. She was shown as a woman wearing a crown surmounted by a five-pointed star. Each year the period when Sirius rose above the horizon at dawn coincided with the coming of the inundation [flood]." (p.208-HEM). Lucifer as Sirius can be left for further investigation (this connection is less important).

Water, of course, is also connected to fertility. Zuni (North America) gave creative answer to this: "The clouds are produced by the breath of the gods and smoke, and, when it is understood that the greater the smoke offering the greater the inducement for the rain-makers to work, it is not surprising that smoking is one of the conspicuous features of the Zufii ritual. There is a time at the summer solstice when the torchbearer sets fire to everything in his way, from Kothluwalawa to Zufii. The greater the smoke offering the heavier the cloud masks will be. "(p.21-ZIM)

Burnt sacrifices are also made for the sunshine. Frazer describes how wizard, of the New Caledonia (island east from Australia), made a burnt sacrifice. In the end when the smoke rises wizard says: "Sun! I do this that you may be burning hot, and eat up all the clouds in the sky."(p.23-GB)

Satan translated from Hebrew means the accuser, adversary, opposer. He accuses people in front of God about sacrifices they made. Like Agni, Eshu (Nigeria) "was the messenger of Olorun, the Supreme Being and sky god, and carried messages and sacrifices from humans on Earth to Olorun. He reported to Olorun on the actions of both humans and the other divinities. Acting on Olorun's orders, Eshu both rewarded and punished humans. He also investigated and reported on the correctness of worship and sacrifices."(p.24-AMS)

One most important characteristic of Devil are his pride and rebellion that we find in Olifat (Olofat) (Pacific Islands). He was "a trickster-god, fire-god and god of death. He was a semi-divine being who ascended to heaven on a column of smoke and demanded recognition as a god [Isaiah 14:14, Ezekiel 28:2]."(p.779-DM) "Olifat was a contradictory figure torn between two worlds. He sometimes rose to heaven on a column of smoke and other times descended to earth on a bolt of lightning. While in heaven, Olifat disturbed the gods by singing and making other noises. On earth, he played tricks on humans."(p.706-UXL)

Lucifer is connected to Satan through fertility. Genesis interpretation will show us how interconnected can be different aspects of the same god. Characteristic of fire, forest agriculture and night sky are shared globally and consequently found in myths all over the world.

The Book of Genesis is (partially) one of the stories about how death (and evil) entered the world. I would also suggest it is a story about how the theft of fire was punished by death (and evil). Yahweh created man out of clay (Adam) and woman out of his rib (Eve) who he placed in the Garden of Eden. He also placed the minds of the garden: The Tree of Life and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. He warns that eating from The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil will lead to death. Serpent then tricks Eve: "Serpent said unto the woman, you shall not surely die: For God does know that in the day you eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and you shall be as gods, knowing good and evil."(Genesis 3:4) After eating they realize they were naked and become ashamed. Adam was punished by hard work in the field and Eve was punished by giving birth to children. Maybe in the original version Serpent didn't mention "knowing good and evil" and played trick solely on desire of transgression (Eve choosing the forbidden one).

In a different dilemma, god himself made a trick on our desire. Njambe of Boloki people (Central African Republic) "allowed people to choose between having immortality and having personal possessions. One day, a man carrying two bundles appeared in a village and offered humans a choice between the bundles. One was large and contained beads, cloth, knives, mirrors, and other desirable objects. The smaller bundle, the man said, contained everlasting life. The women dressed themselves in the beads and cloth and greedily carried away the large bundle. The man - who was really the god Njambe - disappeared with the smaller bundle, and people lost their chance at immortality."(p. 93-AMS)

In Greek mythology, in the opposite, god was tricked by his greed: "Prometheus, a Titan, made two bundles out of the remains of an ox that had been sacrificed. One bundle contained the meat, the other, the bones. He wrapped the bones in succulent-looking fat; the meat he placed inside the stomach sac of the ox. Asked to choose which package he preferred, the god Zeus chose the package that looked succulent but contained nothing but bones. In his anger at being tricked (although some say that the great god surely knew he was being tricked) Zeus decided to keep the knowledge of fire-making from humankind. Prometheus, undaunted, stole fire from heaven, or from the forge of the smith-god, Hephaestus, and took it to Earth hidden in the hollow stalk of the fennel plant. He then began to teach people all the uses of fire - how to make tools and fashion metal, how to build, and how to cook. He also taught people how to sow and reap, and how to use herbs for healing."(p.108-GRM) The myth continues...

"Zeus ordered Hephaestus, the smith-god, to make a woman out of clay. The gods breathed life into her and made her irresistibly beautiful. She was named Pandora (All-giving) and sent to Earth, bearing a sealed vase, of which she was forbidden to know the contents. In spite of warnings from Prometheus, Epimetheus, his brother, immediately took Pandora to be his wife. Then Pandora opened the vase, sometimes called Pandora's Box, and every disaster that humans were ever to know was released upon the world. Only Hope remained in the vase, giving humankind the will to go on living." (p.108-GRM)

Motu (Congo) story reverses genders, and trick god played on desire was punished by gods distance. "When he [Motu] discovered that fruit was disappearing from his garden, he kept watch and saw beings descending from the clouds and stealing his products. He seized one of the women and married her, learning from her the secrets of fire and cooking. They lived happily together until Motu, in defiance of orders from his wife, opened a basket she had brought with her. There was nothing inside but the woman knew that he had opened it and left him, returning forever to the land of the clouds."(p.716-DM)

We saw how the trick can be played by god himself and how god can be merged into first woman and fire god. Another example is Abuk of Dinka people (Sudan). It is an example how Satan can be divided into a family tree. She is Satan's mother and also merged with the first woman. Abuk was "the primordial, or first, woman, who was elevated to divine status; patron goddess of women and gardens. Abuk presided over women's activities, especially the cultivation of millet. Her emblem was a small snake. In the beginning, a rope linked Earth and the heavens, home of the Supreme God, Nhialic. Nhialic permitted Abuk and her husband, Garang (the first man), to plant and grind just one grain of millet a day for food. One day Abuk felt especially hungry, so she planted several millet grains. She used a long-handled hoe to do the planting. At that time the sky was very close to Earth, and Abuk accidentally struck Nhialic with her hoe. This angered the god so much that he severed the rope between Earth and the heavens and withdrew from involvement with human affairs. Because of this, people had to work hard for their food, and illness and death came into the world. In some traditions, Abuk was the mother of Deng [Satan], a rain and fertility god and the intermediary between humans and the Supreme God."(p.2-AMS) Also "Nhialic created the first man (Garang) and woman (Abuk) out of clay."(p.92-AMS) "Deng was sometimes regarded as the son of God, sometimes as the son of the goddess Abuk. He was closely linked with the Supreme God, Nhialic. In some areas, Deng and Nhialic were regarded as one and the same."(p.34-AMS)

On other variation Eve comes after "Satanic Eve". "Lilith (storm goddess) [is] In Jewish, Christian, and Islamic mythology, female demon. She is said to haunt the wilderness in stormy weather. She is especially dangerous to children and pregnant women. In Jewish belief she was the first wife of Adam before Eve but was cast into the air for refusing to obey her husband. It was a medieval custom to place four coins on the Jewish marriage bed, which was to say "Adam and Eve" and "Avaunt thee, Lilith!" In the Old Testament Lilith is referred to as "the screech-owl" in Isaiah (34:14), "the night monster" in the Revised Version. Islamic folklore says she is the wife of Iblis, the devil, and the mother of all evil spirits."(p.607-FFE)

It can be just a change of the name after an event. "Iblis (slanderer) [is] Satan in Islamic folklore, originally an angel called Azazel or al-Haris; he is the father of the djinn. When Allah was forming man, he took clay and after shaping it left it to dry for some 40 days (or 40 years, according to some Islamic versions of the myth). All of the malaika, or angels, who were created from rays of light, came to see Allah's new creation. Iblis, one of Allah's most important angels, appeared among them. He looked at the new creation and, knowing that Allah intended to make it more important than any angel, kicked it with his foot until it resounded. Allah then called all of the angels to come and worship Adam. Iblis refused because, as the Koran (sura 2) phrases it, he "was puffed up with pride.""(p.492-FFE)

Snake "is a potent symbol in African cultures throughout the continent. It is associated with healing, fertility, rain and the rainbow, and the knowledge of secret things. Snakes are often associated with flashes of lightning and feared for their speed and power. Through the shedding of their skins, snakes also symbolize renewal and rebirth and are frequently regarded as immortal."(p. 114-AMS) I would add that lightning, rainbow, rivers, reflection of Sun on sea, Aurora Borealis also look like the snake.

Example from Egyptian mythology is "Renenutet, "the good snake," was the goddess of fields, granaries, and kitchens. She ensured a bountiful harvest for the living and continuing nourishment for the kas of the dead. The snake deity, Nehebkau ("the numerous of coils"), was considered to be her son. In the Pyramid Texts, Nehebkau feeds the dead king and acts as his messenger, but only after he has been subdued by the finger of Atum."(p.199-HEM) One important difference from early theft of fire myths with animal as heroes is that the Satan is personified fire.

Retelling Genesis, using Pandora's Box as reference, can be done in these two ways:
1.Pandora's Box is the fruit from The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. As inverted Pandora's Box: first death (and evil) enters the world and fire comes afterwards. Satan can be the son or another name of the Serpent. Because Satan reappears in Job as trickster before than in Isaiah and Ezekiel - Satan is another name of the Serpent.
2.Pandora's Box is the fruit from The Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. The fruit is the fire. Serpent is symbol of lightning, fruit of the Tree is fire. Same as Loki, who is son of Farbauti (cruel striker - lightning) and Laufey (full of leaves - tree). Satan is son of the Serpent and The Tree - Satan is the fruit, fire.
Sin comes after the fact humans already had sacrificial (distant) relation with God. So they created myths where heavens and earth were connected and fire, wealth from agriculture, greed, desire broke this connection.


Monkey-gods? We know all the benefits humanity has with fire. What remains in myth is dilemma: did we evolve from our ape ancestor by using fire or was fire "the human thing"? Playing the Devil's advocate: the trick was that we did become gods. Gods by our own criteria, who else's criteria? Rather than using primitive gods and compare it to modern humans, I'll just play on imagination. Asking pre-modern man: Who can control power of 1000 horses? He doesn't know that the trick is in the ambiguity of horse power of engines in cars, boats etc. and literally controlling 1000 horses. He would most definitely answer: some supernatural being.

Consumerist marketing sells you the things you don't need to buy to possess. They sell you womanhood and manhood. You buy a car to become a man, or more man. Therefore, without a car you are less man or even no man at all. Industrial marketing was all about scientific facts about products. In these times you were man and when you buy a car you become more like god. Driving is a satisfaction in itself; speed is giving you that great feeling. My commercial would have demon driving a Spartan chariot with hundreds of black horses with red eyes and smoke going out of their nostrils.

God-likeness doesn't apply just to modern man but to all man. Thomas Jefferson answering John Adams in a letter: "You ask if the usage of hunting in circles has ever been known among any of our tribes of Indians? It has been practiced by them all; and it is to this day, by those still remote from the settlements of the whites. But their numbers are not enabling them, like Genghis Khan's seven hundred thousand, to form themselves into circles of one hundred miles diameter, they make their circles by firing the leaves fallen on the ground, which are gradually forcing the animals to a centre, then they slaughter them with arrows, darts, and other missiles. This is called fire hunting, and has been practiced in this State within my time, by the white inhabitants. This is the most probable cause of the origin and extension of the vast prairies in the western country, where grass has been of extraordinary luxuriance, has made conflagration sufficient to kill even the old as well the young timbre."[22] Even though Indians are negatively compared in hunting with Genghis Khan's army, fire is a hunter (force) multiplier. And what other species can create such fast ecological transformations as Indians did in creating prairies from forests? Even Yahweh said, before he drove man out of the garden: "The man has now become like one of us*." The next two myths are truth-bearing.*"Us" probably means an pantheon of gods.

The Book of Job is a story about why the good man suffers. God speak of Job as a blameless and upright man. Job was very wealthy. He had 10 children and thousand of cattle and performed burnt offering according to the number of them all. Satan accuses him in front of God that he is good because he has everything in life. God accepts to put Job to the test. Job found himself in the worst horror scenario. His cattle was stolen, burned with fire from heavens, great wind tore his house down and crushed his children. Job after this whole terror remained good. Satan argued that is because he didn't any feel physical pain. So he inflicted painful boils on his whole body. Three fiends then arrived to mourn with him and to comfort him. Job remains silent for 7 days and then, when he opened his mouth, he cursed the day he was born. Then he simply asked: Why did this happen to me? "Why is life given to those with no future, those God has surrounded with difficulties?" (3:23) His friends answered this, one by one, saying it was his fault; he must have done something wrong. All the time he claims to be innocent. He rejected their answers and called them liars and worthless physicians. (13:4) He laments about how good people suffer and wicked people prosper. Then another friend suddenly appears and gives a cause for his suffering saying this will pay off. (33:26) God then interrupts without giving a clear answer but asking rhetorical questions and show off. God then proves that Job is right and his friends are wrong. God proved Job suffered for no reason, for nothing. Then he demand burnt offering from his friends and a prayer from Job. In the very end God gave Job twice as much as he had before.

This story is evidence of a turn point in history of sacrifice. Job does perform sacrifice (burnt offering) but resists sacrificial interpretation of his suffering. He never sees his suffering as something to be rewarded by staying good. His loss is not part of theological economy. Job is a practical Satanist (he performs burnt offering according to his wealth) but he has also direct relation to God. This turn marks the difference in sacrificial traditions. In one sacrifice ended in the other turned into cosmic law. Aztecs took the latter path. This led to the universe where in order for something to exist something else must be sacrificed. Like with "worthless physicians" everything functions in theological cause and effect. So the universe and life must be the result of gods sacrificing themselves. In Zoroastrianism evil doesn't enter the world but exists from beginning and suffering is a part of a cosmic battle between good and evil. Buddhism similarly gave cosmic meaning to suffering (Karma). God in Job said no, there is no hidden truth behind suffering.

Jesus in the Wilderness is a similar myth to Job. A year after Jesus was baptized and he went to the wilderness. After fasting forty days he was hungry. Satan tested him: "If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread."Jesus answered quoting Deuteronomy: "Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God."(6:13) Then Satan took him to the highest point of the temple, and tries to trick Jesus by quoting word of God: "He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone." (Psalms 91:11-12) Jesus answered him quoting Deuteronomy: "Do not put the Lord your God to the test."(6:16) Again, the Devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor and said: "All this I will give you, if you will bow down and worship me." Jesus rejected it quoting Deuteronomy: "Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only." Then Stan left him, and angels came and attended him. (Matthew 4:1-11)

Hebrews (4:15) lead us directly to the point: "we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-yet he did not sin.""Did not sin" precisely means that Jesus kept a direct relation to God. He doesn't calculate with God: "All you need to say is simply "Yes" or "No"" (Matthew 5:37). This is not a cosmic battle of good and evil where one is to become God's hero: "do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing" (Matthew 6:3). Jesus was living God, without a mediator (Satan). To quote Kennan: "Sacrifice [of sacrifice] must necessarily be a sacrifice for nothing, a sacrifice for no reason, no goal. It must necessarily be a nonsensical aneconomical sacrifice."(p.1) As a self fulfilling prophecy, the Messiah ended offering and sacrifice (Daniel 9:27). Jesus Christ parabolically talked about heaven and hell as states of mind. If Christ sacrificed so we can have an afterlife, then he didn't end the sacrifice (contrary to what mainstream Christians believe). Even worse, all our actions then become sacrifices so we could end up in heaven. Revelation was written from a marginalized Christian position at that time. It doesn't contain much wisdom but fantastic imagery.


4.Church Burnings and Anti-Clericalism

One thing associated (at least in modern times) with "Satanism" is church burnings. Conrad "Cronos" Lant is the father of black metal (at least of the name "black metal"), bassist and vocalist of the band Venom. In one interview he was asked about how he felt watching the church burnings and killings in Norway in the early 90s, by bands that'd been influenced by Venom.

"You can take things into all sorts of other areas but once other events take over from the music you're defeating the point. You've always got to have the music as numero uno and going out and killing people has nothing to do with entertaining people... "[23]

Entertainment becomes problematic when you have the movie like V for Vendetta where burning churches and killing fascists is fireworks. The movie is steampunk version of Francesco Franco dictatorship where the Reds are replaced by the terrorists. Church plays more or less the same role. Vendetta is liberal* techno-superhero, like Batman who is conservative techno-superhero. They both depend on technology. Important as fire-technology, pyrotechnology for Vendetta and Batman is the media technology. For Batman media is a police service, for Vendetta it is much more interesting. Understanding that the first mass media technology was the horn and information it sent was simply "alert". Same as the modern war sirens. How Vendetta used highly centralized fascist television resembles that of another mass media - the church bell. Church bell sends information about where and when believers meet. Vendetta only needed to convince the viewers that they all are believers and tell them the place and time. The place was the main square, the time was November 5 at midnight - what they believed was the revolution. We know how protest can lead to revolution. We know the political and economical aspect of protest, but who has ever been on a large protest has also felt the religious aspect of the pilgrimage. *It is wrongly labeled "anarchist" because there is no critique of capitalism. (Capitalist firms are hierarchical.)

Joker, a trickster from Batman-The Dark Knight, made most famous statement: "Introduce a little anarchy. Upset the established order and everything becomes chaos." But the role of Joker is quite the opposite. He forces Batman to into breaking the law so Batman can preserve the law. Same as Satan destructiveness in the Book of Job serves the greater picture. Guantanamo Bay torture camp is therefore justified as breaking the law so the law can be preserved. The role of the trickster is to test us, law abiding citizens. Joker, far from an anarchist, just serves the conservative ideology. But at second level, the role of Joker also reveals what conservatives fear the most. Police tries to find the motives for Jokers actions in wealth or revenge. Here, the difference of good and bad people isn't the motivation but that good people don't break the law. The true terror is that Joker did it out of faith. The Pharisees felt the same when confronted with Jesus' love. For pagans, whose motives are wealth and revenge, faith and love are the most terrifying. Joker is character that has both Satan and Jesus qualities.

If I harm to you, only reason I would argue against revenge is because I don't want you to harm me. I would be "wolf in a sheep's clothing". But the problem is the individualistic scenario: neither me nor you determine the law of revenge - the society determines it. It is the similar nonsense to the lifeboat scenarios [24]. In vendetta, blood feuds there are strict rules, there is no personal choice. In society of revenge one gets punished for forgiveness, in society of forgiveness one gets punished for revenge. In society of revenge you personally need to conduct the law. In society of forgiveness society conducts the law. Early Christians didn't fight any singular Roman oppressor (revenge), but they fought for dominion of Christianity. Forgiveness means anti-systemic struggle, it means justice (love) for the enemies also. In V for Vendetta hero also gives double message: one to the audience one to the oppressed citizens in the movie. Citizens are like the Early Christians and Vendetta is the liberal "Christian" Dark Knight.

To continue... Like Cronos, I would like to avoid moralization here. Roman Church did collaborate openly in the past and consequently made itself into a target. Far from immoral or unprofessional, the question remains: why did the events in Norway happen?

Croatian people like to compare Croatia with Norway mostly because we have similar amount of people and would like to be as wealthy. Norway's economic boom happened in 60's when large reserves of petroleum and natural gas were discovered and they didn't privatize it. Low unemployment rate, egalitarian income and free healthcare are some of reasons Norway is desirable country to live. So we can exclude economic reasons? France in 60's has experienced an economic boom too, mainly because of the large state intervention. France's boom resulted with events in that are familiar as May '68. We can say that events in Norway in 90's were delayed and failed May '68 because Norway lacked in political tradition. That's maybe too farfetched but not completely. Young rebelled against conservatives in both countries and consumerism, to say the least, didn't satisfy them. Maybe the lesson is that in developed capitalism anything can happen?

Roman Church authorities have correctly noticed how television occupy central place of our homes. As if TV was some kind of place of worship. They don't tell you what was before TV. It was a fireplace. Family met in front of this primitive technology for temperature regulation. Question of historical primacy remains: was fireplace built inside of house or was house built around fireplace? House fires were annually renewed by sacred fire in many religions. In ancient Rome sacred fire was protected by Vestal Virgins. Virginity has material origins: parents kept a daughter to take care of them in old age, so she didn't get married. Vestal Virgins were daughters of the state, so sexual intercourse with citizens were considered incestuous as having sex with brothers. Theodosius the Great made Christianity the state religion and disbanded the Vestal Virgins. Abstinence, now called celibacy, of Roman Catholic priests is continuation of the former. In a hierarchical church, priests become fathers and people become their children. The tragedy seem to be when women become your children, children become your women.


5.Black Art

What is art? Something made by an artist? Who is an artist?

One annoying figure comes to mind. Woody Allen in movie Vicky Cristina Barcelona made an artist that provokes me. Julio is the father of a painter played by Javier Bardem. Julio refuses to speak English or any other language but Spanish. He thinks that a poet (like him) should not pollute his poetry by any other language. It doesn't matter if you speak Spanish because he punishes the world he hates by not publishing. Because, after thousand years of civilization people didn't learn how to love. And the idiot did learn? I would give him a cruel ultimatum: ok, don't publish but you can't experience any art from other artists; or you can experience all art but can't make your own. Any artist would choose the first. This is the definition of the artist.

What is art? Who can define art? What is not art?

In tribe there is no taste, no opinion about art, because there is no concept of art at all."What is not art" is a political question that in corresponds to conservative, liberal and the Left. Aesthetics are only criteria for conservatives: If it is ugly, it is not art (or more modestly, it is beyond comprehension). Technique is central for liberals: Appreciating beauty but if everyone can do it, it doesn't have value (or it is not art). Meaning is dimension of the Left: Appreciating beauty and technique but if it is stupid, it is pointless (or it is not art).

Frank Zappa talked about decline of music industry [25]. He said one thing that was positive of 60's was the opportunity experimental music had. The reason for this was conservative executives who basically didn't understand any of the modern music and gave everyone an opportunity. If it sells - good, if not - who can know why? In 70's, after they hired liberal hipsters for consulting everything went wrong because liberals "knew" what people wanted and experimental music didn't have a chance. What sells is a question of "who buys"? Pop music is aesthetics of young girls. So liberals ended being more conservative than conservatives. Conservatives just don't get anything that is not beautiful.

Nazis was all about appearance. Everything that wasn't beautiful was degenerative. This is why Nazis froze on the Eastern Front. Soviet uniforms looked like of an homeless savages. Hitler, instead of sending better uniforms, wanted to separate the meteorological service from the army [26]. The Russians have a saying that there is no such thing as cold weather, only the wrong kind of clothing. This made soviets true practical liberals and made Nazis into frozen beauties.

Arnold Schoenberg, as example of degenerate artist, is similar to Paul Klee as they are both centered on technique and meaning was given by others, in this case German intellectuals. Theodor Adorno viewed atonal music of Schoenberg as the most progressive and tonality was a decaying form of bourgeois music [27]. Walter Benjamin, was also determined to give meaning to art, made his most famous interpretation of Paul Klee's Angelus Novus [28]. The painting looks ugly and as something a child could make, like paintings from Jackson Pollock. But try it yourself if you think everyone can paint like Pollock or Klee. Slavoj Žižek in Why is Wagner Worth Saving? opened the Left dimension of Richard Wagner's work. Even more, in one of his lesson he speaks about Wagner's Ring as a Communist Narrative [29]. In a letter to Friedrich August II, when applying to position as court composer in Dresden, Johann Sebastian Bach writes: "To Your Royal Highness I submit in deepest devotion the present small work of the science which I have achieved in musique,..." [30] Bach was scientist of music just as Adorno was a philosopher of music.

Alexander Scriabin developed his own system independently from Schoenberg. He planned to unite all arts in a mystical synthesis that will bring birth to a new world [31]. Scriabin is not interesting here because of his Prometheus: The Poem of Fire or The Black Mass but for something else. His "chord of the pleroma" [32] (c/f#/a#/e/a/d) is the only thing in music that resembles Kazimir Malevich's Black Square [33]. Malevich being an art theoretician gave meaning to his paintings and he pushed the meaning to the end. Black Square is something a child could do, also like a teenager could do Marcel Duchamp's Fountain and it is unnecessary to say it is ugly. But the meaning is absolutely unique. Fascist Futurism, at first, seems to resist this categorization. What was telling from reading dozen of futurist manifestos was the focus on technique. We can also include left centre and right centre and include exclusion of the middle.

What is a black art then? Black metal?

Black metal is the theological punk. Punk music itself is the political punk. It started as an ugly rebellion, and then develops in all three political directions. First wave bands like Venom (England) wear the same outfits all the time, on and off performance. Their social role of rebels was represented by the costume, looks were part of a lifestyle. Second wave bands like Immortal (Norway) or Drottnar (Norway) have more extreme looks but only on performance, as stage personas. In everyday life they wear their normal clothing. Third wave bands like Wolves in the Throne Room (USA) dress normally all the time on and off performance. And you might think: "great for them for dropping all the theatrical makeup" but the truth is that they just wear their normal costume, costume of normal in their own theatre of everyday.

What is black art then? Some art made by black people?

Dancing is something we whites think is a black thing. Michael Stephens gives a great analysis of fear of dancing. He quotes Smile Please where author Jean Rhys - white, bourgeois, young English girl - gives her impressions of the dancing at carnival in Dominica: "We couldn't dress up or join in but we could watch from the open window and not through the jalousies. There were gaily-masked crowds with a band. Listening, I would think that I would give anything, anything to be able to dance like that. The life surged up to us sitting stiff and well behaved, looking on." Stephens's thoughts on this are enlightening: "The stiffness of the Europeans is not necessarily a sign of their inability to dance "like" the Dominicans; it is a bodily refusal of the Dominicans' rhythms and movement patterns and an expression of in-group solidarity. Deep anxieties of culture and class are expressed in the Europeans' posture: fears of merging with one's inferiors, betraying one's class, losing one's identity. A whole history of social tension is embodied as somatic tension. There is also, clearly, the assumption that physical restraint characterizes white bourgeois civilization."[36]

The most politically problematic figure in art is the conductor. It seems like conductor is outside of performance and art categories. Orchestra plays, choir sings what conductor does? Conductor uses sticks (batons), but sticks aren't musical instrument nor are they connected to a instrument or computer. Conductor belongs to Kantian dimension of indefinite judgment as a specific kind of dancer. Dancer is a person who moves the body to fallow musicians (recorded or live). Not a dancer is someone who just doesn't dance. And here is the third dimension of nondancer, undancer. Conductor is a person who moves the body to make musicians produce music and then he interacts with musicians. Orchestra plays as the conductor dance and they exchange in movement. Watch first few moments of Valery Gergiev conducting Mahler's 6th Symphony and tell me it's not headbanging [34 link]. Or how would you call movement at the ending seconds of Mikhail Pletnev conducting Tchaikovsky's Slavic March [35 link]? I would call that movement the facequake plus the evil hand holding a magic air orb.

Conducting technique include synchronicity of both hands, wave-like circular movements according to the time signature, changing size of movements according to dynamics, moving parts of body (head, palms, back, knees), according to dynamics or articulation, gestures to individuals or to a section of an orchestra signaling to start or to play differently. Nondancing is only on performance, conductor also prepares orchestra by interrupting and talking on rehearsals. Far from a general or dictator, conductor is interacting like a charismatic leader, like a professor who waves his hands and makes gestures to his students.

What would revolutionary dance look like? "[C]apoeira is a prime example of a "counterculture of modernity... ""[37] Capoeira is mostly known as the martial dance used by the African slaves in Brazil. Its rich history has resulted in many ambiguities and myths [38]. Capoeira's universal meaning of resistance is what every revolutionary dancing should aspire to. Emma Goldman said: "A revolution without dancing is not a revolution worth having." In fact we will have no revolution without dancing. "And we should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once." - Friedrich Nietzsche


6.Satan's Fiction

Before we go in to the future, more about forests and ecology. Talking about forests is always talking about past. Who knows what those big trees have gone through? Their old age and size ask for respect. For our ancestors forests were places where the game was hidden. Gods of forests are always also gods of hunting. Today's survivalist documentaries and reality shows try to teach us supposed knowledge and wisdom our ancestors had. They teach us to pretend that we are just another animal in harmony with nature. But survival is anything but concern for harmony. They should tell you, if you don't know any of more sophisticated techniques of haunting - burn down a forest. That is your best chance of getting food. (Examples of fire use would require a whole essay if not a book.) It is not wise to respect other living beings, especially competing predators (like wolves) that you should repel (or exterminate) if you want to have more food for yourself. Survivalist reality shows and documentaries lead us directly to contemporary eco mythology.

Albert Einstein said "If the bee disappeared off the face of the earth, man would only have four years left to live." List of crop plants pollinated by bees are mainly fruits (there are also geographical and technological differences of food production) so we could put this into question. But let's say it is true, Einstein still didn't talk about panda, whale or polar bear - who we should preserve for other reasons and not because they are cute and fluffy. Bees have a mutualistic relationship to plants and most of the animals are just exploiters, directly or indirectly by eating herbivores. Circle of life, something must die in order for something else to live, is satanistic ecology of Aztecs where even gods needed to die. Christian ecology was "science" that functioned until industrial era of fossil fuels. Christ feeding thousands with just two fishes is a parable of this ecology. Fishes reproduce themselves by eating planktons that get biomass from the Sun via photosynthesis. Fishes represent a nature's abundance that doesn't require any investment. Hydraulic systems of agriculture are probably the reason why water becomes the dominant symbol of that era.

Biodiversity is like the Noah's Ark. We somewhat understand importance of diversity but did God really need to save malaria (protozoan) and mosquitoes? More than half of the animal and plant species in the world live in tropical forests. And people who wish to conserve this are usually downright hypocritical. What they actually mean by biodiversity is "not in my back yard diversity" (NIMBYD). We would all prefer only directly beneficiary species around us. Forest as a carbon regulator is another hypocritical view of countries with industrial agriculture.

This lead us to the myths of organic agriculture. We aren't what we eat but what we can digest. Facts are often distasteful and even if you swallow them they can just go right through your system. Industry is not as pretty as rain forest shot by camera from a helicopter, but I would rather get lost in the middle of industrial zone, with all of its toxicity than get lost in the middle of a rain forest to meet the certain death. The elementary fact of agriculture is domestication. By definition, domestication is elimination of diversity and preservation of beneficiary species. The elementary fact of nutrient production is photosynthesis. That is manufacture of organic molecules from inorganic molecules. Virtually all energy that enters the biosphere comes from the Sun and not the Earth. Sun is a nuclear catastrophe in progress that will end life on Earth one day. Industrial agriculture and industry in general made possible for social healthcare and education that doubled life expectancy. You don't need statistics or experiments when even elementary facts are not digested.

Other fact is that developed countries don't have survival problems of food scarcity our ancestors had. We have problem of unemployment. Liberal politics, resembling "worthless physicians", don't offer any solution, only speculation and accusations. "Laziness of workers is responsible for unemployment" is one of these accusations. It is obvious that laziness is not a scientific but a religious category. Accusers wish to hide the nonsensical suffering of unemployed workers. Unemployment is no longer a problem but an opportunity for speculation. Milton Friedman even made unemployment into a natural law [39], we could say a cosmic God's law.

Problem of parabolas and metaphors is the risk of oversimplification that can lead to misconception - myth. When scientists say that "nature regulates" or "genes prefer" they talk in metaphors. Taken literally is anthropomorphism. This leads to a problem of consciousness, free will and other philosophical questions. It is different when economists say that "market needs" or "market demands". When talking about diamond market, economists mean a small group of rich people who are demanding diamonds. When talking about labor market we see myths created. "Labor market demands" are demands of employers, capitalists or the state not some living being called the "Labor Market". So why economists simply don't say employers demand? Maybe to cover up that labor, workers have their own demand of employment.

Businessmen say that they can't offer jobs because of the high inputs, high cost of labor (and high tax, regulation). Lack of incentive, motivation to invest and create jobs, what they say in metaphor, is "anti-business climate". Lack of incentive, motivation to work harder is called "laziness of workers" instead of "anti-labor climate". Employer is also the state, directly or indirectly. For example, Croatian dominant politics favor tourist economy. They invest taxpayer's money into different tourist attractions, eliminate ugly and dirty industry, stimulate tourist services etc. This benefit group, class of people who have real estate on the coast and is detrimental to the workers (whose jobs are mostly tied to industry). When politicians talk about "demands of economy" they are denying politics that created demands. The capitalist myth is the very denial of class conflict in capitalism.

Materialist concept of history [40] doesn't just apply to beliefs of primitive man but also to modern man. It is easy to see how cutting and burning vegetation, which lasted for thousands of years, evolved into killing and burning people and associated myths. Neolithic farmers observed how smoke rises to the heavens and draw conclusions out of it. Similarly, every day we observe market exchanges so it seems logical to assume that our actions in the market determine the value of a product. And the Labor theory of value [41] seems counter to our everyday experience.

Neolithic farmers accepted cruelty of sacrifice believing this was the God's Law. Why do we accept cruelty towards unemployed, poor, immigrants if not for believing in the economic God's Law? Even more problematic is how reaction to myth can create new myths. Or it can be just a return of the old myths. Stalin, like in the futuristic reading of the Book of Revelation, made historical materialism itself into God's law - God ensures the happy end of cosmic battle between good and evil, so this justifies cruelty towards evil losers today. "With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil - that takes religion" - Steven Weinberg

Concepts of Myth used in this essay: 1. Myth as paranoia (the wide story that explains everything) 2. Myth as irrationality (stories about universe of premodern man, creationism) 3. Myth as ideological camouflage (circumvention of inconvenient truth, lack in explanation etc.) 4. Myth as unfounded-widespread belief (wrong metaphor, oversimplification) 5. Myth as document (useful for understanding our past and beliefs of our ancestors) 6. Myth as wise story (truthful myth, critique of a myth)

Satan has an uncertain future. He was/is a trickster hero, sacrificial messenger, fallen angel, personification of evil, romantic rebel, archetype and fire god [42]. But his historical role, as personified fire, is much more important than paranoid Gnostics could imagine. Without fire we would live slightly better than other animals. Fire made from the forests, as containers of Sun's energy, made humans into dominant species. Fires made from the fossil fuels made humans dominate nature. Artificial photosynthesis makes it possible to control Sun's energy directly. The inviolable role of nature has come to question.


Literature

The Descent of Man - Charles Darwin

The Neurobiological Origins of Primitive Religion - Steve Farmer

African Folklore - Philip M.Peek and Kwesi Yankah

A History of World Agriculture - M. Mazoyer

The Golden Bough - Sir James George Frazer

A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy - Karl Marx

Guns, Germs, and Steel - Jared Diamond

The Psychoanalysis of Fire - Gaston Bachelard

Fire: A Brief History - Stephen J. Pyne

The Question of Sacrifice - Dennis King Keenan

Marx's Concept of Man - Erich Fromm

Abbreviations

DM - Dictionary of Mythology - J. A. Coleman

HWA - A History of World Agriculture - Marcel Mazoyer and Lawrence Roudart

GB - Golden Bough - J. G. Frazer

FFE - The Facts on File Encyclopedia or World Mythology and Legend - Anthony S. Mercatante & James R. Dow

SMA - South and Meso-American Mythology A to Z, Second Edition - Ann Bingham

AMS - African Mythology A -Z, Second Edition - Patricia Ann Lynch and Jeremy Roberts

HEM - Handbook of Egyptian Mythology - Geraldine Pinch

GRM - Greek and Roman Mythology A-Z - Kathleen N. Daly

ZIM - Zuni Indian Mythology - Powell, JW

UXL - UXL Encyclopedia of World Mythology - Gale Cengage Learning

References

[1] The same high mental faculties which first led man to believe in unseen spiritual agencies, then in fetishism, polytheism, and ultimately in monotheism, would infallibly lead him, as long as his reasoning powers remained poorly developed, to various strange superstitions and customs. Many of these are terrible to think of- such as the sacrifice of human beings to a blood-loving god; the trial of innocent persons by the ordeal of poison or fire; witchcraft, &c.- yet it is well occasionally to reflect on these superstitions, for they shew us what an infinite debt of gratitude we owe to the improvement of our reason, to science, and to our accumulated knowledge. As Sir J. Lubbock* has well observed, "it is not too much to say that the horrible dread of unknown evil hangs like a thick cloud over savage life, and embitters every pleasure." These miserable and indirect consequences of our highest faculties may be compared with the incidental and occasional mistakes of the instincts of the lower animals. (p.68 - The Descent of Man - Charles Darwin)

[2] Encyclopedia Galactica [Episode 12]

[3] Europeans saw North American tricksters as incarnations of Satan. (p.131 - The Trickster Brain: Neuroscience, Evolution, and Narrative - David Williams)

[4] [F]oreign scholars equated Eshu with Satan in Christianity and with Shaitan in Islam. Christian missionaries who came to Yorubaland and translated the Bible into Yoruba used Eshu for Satan. In the eyes of the early missionaries, Eshu was a devil and, therefore, an embodiment of evil. However, trying to understand Eshu from the perspective of Christian religion or Islamic religion invariably leads to an inaccurate conception of the deity. (p.965 - African Folklore - Philip M.Peek and Kwesi Yankah)

[5] Ezekiel - English Standard Version - The word of the Lord came to me: "Son of man, say to the prince of Tyre, Thus says the Lord God: "Because your heart is proud, and you have said, 'I am a god, I sit in the seat of the gods, in the heart of the seas,' yet you are but a man, and no god, though you make your heart like the heart of a god - you are indeed wiser than Daniel; no secret is hidden from you; by your wisdom and your understanding you have made wealth for yourself, and have gathered gold and silver into your treasuries; by your great wisdom in your trade you have increased your wealth, and your heart has become proud in your wealth. (28:1-26)

Isaiah - English Standard Version - How you are fallen from heaven, O Day Star, son of Dawn! How you are cut down to the ground, you who laid the nations low! You said in your heart, 'I will ascend to heaven; above the stars of God I will set my throne on high; I will sit on the mount of assembly in the far reaches of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.' But you are brought down to Sheol, to the far reaches of the pit. (14:12-15)

[6] Light: Any radiation capable of causing a visual sensation directly. (International Lighting Vocabulary)
[7] Photosynthesis. The, light-dependent manufacture of organic from inorganic molecules occurring in chloroplasts and the cells of, blue-green algae-and some bacteria, in presence of one or more types of light-trapping pigment (notably chlorophylls in plants). Almost 'the only carbon-fixing, process on Earth, and the route by which virtually all energy enters the biosphere. (The New Penguin Dictionary of Biology - Miscahel Abercrombie)
[8] Feynman Physics Lectures - Electricity in the Atmosphere

[9] The Oxygenation of the Atmosphere and Oceans - Heinrich D. Holland

[10] Respiration. (I) (Internal, tissue or cellular respiration.) Erizymatic release of energy' from organic-compounds (esp. carbohydrates and fats) "which either requires oxygen (aerobic respiration) or does not (anaerobic respiration). (p.492 - The New Penguin Dictionary of Biology - Miscahel Abercrombie)

[11] Fun to Imagine - BBC TV series (1983)
[12] http://science1.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2000/ast12may_1/

[13] Hel Norse [Hela.Hell] a parti-coloured underworld goddess daughter of Loki and Angerbode. She was thrown into Niflheim by Odin to rule the nine worlds of the dead. She occasionally roamed the earth on a three-legged horse, bringing famine and disease, and is envisaged as half black, half white. In some accounts, she is the leader of the Wild Hunt, in others she is Urd. (p.465 - DM)

[14] Libation - a magico-religious ritual that entails pouring liquid on the ground, or sprinkling it on ritual participants or sacred objects, as a means of communication between human and spiritual beings. The liquids used and the conditions of the ritual vary by geographical, ethnic, and temporal contexts. (p.423 - African Folklore - Philip M.Peek and Kwesi Yankah)

[15] Synesthesia - the remarkable condition in which sensory data (taste, touch, smells, colors, etc.) or even abstract concepts (letters, numbers, days of the week, etc.) evoke mirrored responses in linked perceptual, cognitive, emotional, or motor circuits. The result is that synesthetes may "taste" words, "hear" or "smell" shapes, or reliably attach specific emotions to specific colors, days, or abstract concepts. (p.26 - The Neurobiological Origins of Primitive Religion - Steve Farmer)

[16] Historical materialism explains how [t]he changes in the economic foundation lead sooner or later to the transformation of the whole immense superstructure. In studying such transformations it is always necessary to distinguish between the material transformation of the economic conditions of production, which can be determined with the precision of natural science, and the legal, political, religious, artistic or philosophic -- in short, ideological forms in which men become conscious of this conflict and fight it out. (p.2 - A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy - Karl Marx - 1859)

[17] p.234 - Anthropology - Conrad Phillip Kottak

[18] [T]o be domesticated, [wild animal] must be sufficiently docile, submissive to humans, cheap to feed, and immune to diseases and must grow rapidly and breed well in captivity. (...) Eurasia's native cows, sheep, goats, horses, and pigs were among the world's few large wild animal species to pass all those tests. Their African equivalents - such as the African buffalo, zebra, bushpig, rhino, and hippopotamus - have never been domesticated, not even in modern times. (p. 398 - Guns, Germs, and Steel - Jared Diamond)

[19] http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/rigveda/rv01001.htm

[20] Europe's colonization of Africa had nothing to do with differences between European and African peoples themselves, as white racists assume. Rather, it was due to accidents of geography and biogeography - inparticular, to the continents' different areas, axes, and suites of wild plant and animal species. That is, the different historical trajectories of Africa and Europe stem ultimately from differences in real estate. (p.401 - Guns, Germs, and Steel - Jared Diamond)

[21] Noam Chomsky interview from Veterans Unplugged http://veteransunplugged.com/theshow/archive/118-chomsky-december-2012
[22] p.234 - The Adams-Jefferson letters - Lester J. Cappon

[23] Suite 101 - Venom Interview on Black Metal http://suite101.com/article/venom-interview-on-black-metal-a53776
[24] Lifeboat scenario is constructed story of a extreme situation that puts conventional morality into question. It doesn't represent our everyday situation.

[25] Frank Zappa interview from The Cutting Edge

[26] p. 50 - Hitler's Table Talk, 1941-1944: His Private Conversations

[27] Theodor Adorno's Theory of Music and its Social Implications - Moya K. Mason

[28] There is a painting by Klee called Angelus Novus. An angel is depicted there who looks as though he were about to distance himself from something which he is staring at. His eyes are opened wide, his mouth stands open and his wings are outstretched. The Angel of History must look just so. His face is turned towards the past. Where we see the appearance of a chain of events, he sees one single catastrophe, which unceasingly piles rubble on top of rubble and hurls it before his feet. He would like to pause for a moment so fair [verweilen: a reference to Goethe's Faust], to awaken the dead and to piece together what has been smashed. But a storm is blowing from Paradise, it has caught itself up in his wings and is so strong that the Angel can no longer close them. The storm drives him irresistibly into the future, to which his back is turned, while the rubble-heap before him grows sky-high. That which we call progress, is this storm. (IX - On the Concept of History - Walter Benjamin) http://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/benjamin/1940/history.htm

[29] Masterclass - day 3 - Notes Towards a Definition of Communist Culture - Slavoj Zizek http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rpGWu7VJbU0

[30] Bach letter. The Tangeman Lecture - Marcus Rathey http://www.yale.edu/ism/colloq_journal/vol2/rathey1.html

[31] Skryabin's involvement with the Symbolists manifested itself in his Mysterium (Misteriya), or Mystery Play, which he had conceived as a Wagnerian opera, but which gradually came to encompass all of the Symbolists' philosophical and religious obsessions: the Scriptures, the philosophies of Nietzsche and Schopenhauer, the ecumenical religion of Vladimir Solovyov (1853-1900), and the Theosophical Doctrine of Madame Helena Blavatsky (1831-1891). The performance was to be held for seven days and nights in India, during which time Skryabin planned to remove the barrier separating audience and performers and to create conditions favorable for spiritual communion (sobornost) and all-unity (vse-edinstvo). (p.284 - Skryabin and the Impossible - Simon Morrison)

[32] Skryabin did not use the terms "Prometheus" or "mystic" to describe his famous sonority [chord]: they were invented respectively by Sabaneyev and Arthur Eaglefield Hull (in a 1916 article in The Musical Times). He had his own name for it: akkord pleromy, or "chord of the pleroma." Richard Taruskin explains that pleroma, a Christian Gnostic term derived from the Greek for "plentitude," was the all-encompassing hierarchy of the divine realm, located entirely outside the physical universe, at immeasurable distance from man's terrestrial abode, totally alien and essentially 'other' to the phenomenal world and whatever belongs to it. What we know as the mystic chord, then, was designed to afford instant apprehension of-that is, to reveal-what was in essence beyond the mind of man to conceptualize. Its preternatural stillness was a gnostic intimation of a hidden otherness, a world and its fullness wholly above and beyond rational or emotional cognition. (p.313-314 - Skryabin and the Impossible - Simon Morrison)

[33] The black square on the white field was the first form in which nonobjective feeling came to be expressed. The square = feeling, the white field = the void beyond this feeling. (Supermatizam Manifesto - Kazimir Malevich) http://www.moodbook.com/history/modernism/malevich-suprematism.html

[34] Valery Gergiev - London Symphony Orchestra - Mahler's 6th symphony. Recorded in November, 2007. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IT22BZ5gGbU

[35] Mikhail Pletnev - Russian National Orchestra - Marche Slave op.31. Recorded in October, 2005. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSf8uF5UE-U Time: 8:20

[36] Fear of Dancing: Movement, Bodily Display, and the Practice of Restraint - Michael Stephens http://bad.eserver.org/issues/2002/59/stephens.html

[37] p. 29 - Capoeira: The History of an Afro-Brazilian Martial Art - Matthias Rohrig Assuncao

[38] Many practitioners claim that capoeira is played to music, because during the times of slavery it had to be disguised as a dance in order to fool the slave owners. Unfortunately all the early sources on capoeira make quite clear that the masters were only too aware of the potential danger of capoeira practised by slaves. Another popular story explains that capoeira uses mainly foot kicks because slaves were chained together by their hands and had therefore only the feet left touse. Historical evidence, however, suggests that slaves had their feet in shackles to prevent them from running away, leaving their hands free to work.(p.8 - Capoeira: The History of an Afro-Brazilian Martial Art - Matthias Rohrig Assuncao)

[39] "Natural rate of unemployment" in the original. What Friedman and other liberal economists camouflage is the "preferable rate of unemployment (for capitalists)". The preferable rate is high enough to bring down the wages but low enough to maintain social peace.

[40] In fact, Marx never used the terms "historical materialism" or "dialectic materialism"; he did speak of his own "dialectical method" in contrast with that of Hegel and of its "materialistic basis," by which he simply referred to the fundamental conditions of human existence. (Marx's Concept of Man - Erich Fromm) http://www.marxists.org/archive/fromm/works/1961/man/ch02.htm

[41] Marx didn't see labor as the source of all wealth: Labor is not the source of all wealth. Nature is just as much a source of use values (and it is surely of such that material wealth consists!) as labor, which is itself only the manifestation of a force of nature, human labor power. (Critique of the Gotha Programme - Karl Marx) http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1875/gotha/ch01.htm

[42] Satan - Lord of Fire, Lord of the Underworld,[...], Prince of Darkness. (p.909 - DM)


[Figure 1] Centers of origin and spread of agriculture:
Figure 1
Description: Map of the world showing approximate centers of origin of agriculture and its spread in prehistory: eastern USA (4000-3000 BP), Central Mexico (5000-4000 BP), Northern South America (5000-4000 BP), sub-Saharan Africa (5000-4000 BP, exact location unknown), the Fertile Crescent (11000 BP), the Yangtze and Yellow River basins (9000 BP) and the New Guinea Highlands (9000-6000 BP). Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Centres_of_origin_and_spread_of_agriculture.

[Figure 2] Centers of origin of food production. A question mark indicates some uncertainty whether the rise of food production at that center wasreally uninfluenced by the spread of food production from other centers, or (in the case of New Guinea) what the earliest crops were. (p.99 - Guns, Germs, and Steel - Jared Diamond)
Figure 2

[Figure 3] Centers of Origin and Areas of Extension of the Neolithic Agricultural Revolution (p.72 - HWA)
Figure 3

[Figure 4] The Growth of Human Population In Connection with the Development of Agrarian Systems throughout the World (p.62 - HWA)
Figure 4

[Figure 5] Agrarian Genealogy: Historical Sequence and Geographical Differentiation of Eurasian and African Systems
Originating in the Near Eastern Center (p.127 - HWA)
Figure 5

[Figure6] Fifteen-Year Rotation (c1, c2, f2, f3..., f13) and Plot Allotment for Fifteen Parcels (p1, p2..., p15) (p.108 - HWA)
Figure 6

[Figure 7] Profiles of a Wooded Parcel Cultivated by the Slash and Burn Technique (p.105 - HWA)
Figure 7

[Figure 8] Diagrams of the Organization of a Communal Territory of Forest Farmers (p.111 - HWA)
Figure 8

Revision

Autumn 2013
Title: Origin of Human Sacrifice
Part: Defining Sacrifice

Added:
Eshu is the protector of crossroads, the common trading places. Major crossroads evolved into town square, market, agora. This are places where people of different languages meet and that explains the stories like Tower of Babel. Motivations evolved over time from wealth into well-being.

Replaced:
"The offering is killed and burned. In expended sense offering doesn't have to be burned but it can't be reused (e.g., eating offering). Or in even more expanded sense offering can be reused symbolically (e.g., eating the heart). Some parts are probably removed out of practical reasons, like blood that doesn't burn well." - was replaced by - Leviticus and Yajna describe how to sacrifice in detail. Sacrifices are roughly separated for daily performance and for the particular purpose. In general, offerings are personal or communal possessions, from organic origins that are burned. In practice of Aztecs, only some sacrifices are burned, offered children are eaten, and captives are sacrifices. This puts in question the sincerity of sacrifice or the very criteria of proper offering. Sincerity is in the tradition and calendar ruled sacrifice. Again, sacred texts are the best criteria for proper offering.

Author’s note: I wanted to elaborate on why wealth asociated with traders and cities is and how motives evolved. Second part of definition was made with the concern for sincerity of sacrifice instead on actual practices (texts). I was arbitrary when defining sacrifice.

Keyword list

Human sacrifice, slash and burn, historical materialism, trickster, fire, Satan

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