The Esoteric Meaning of Snakes
Waves are the means by which the universe functions. The ancients of many cultures taught this concept, and now modern physics has come to the same conclusion. From the orbits of the astral bodies to the movement of the smallest particles, everything is described by vibrations.
How did God create the cosmos? He spoke. And what is speech? It's waves of varying frequencies and amplitudes (whether through air or not). Since snakes move in waves, they are symbolic of duality.
A circle, by the way, is the most perfect and basic shape, and it's a wave that loops into itself. The ouroborous, the mystical symbol of the snake eating it's own tail, conveys the idea of duality existing within unity, endlessly.
The unification of opposite poles balancing each other out is a sacred concept often represented by entwined snakes. Harmony is essential for healthy life for both individuals and ecosystems, therefore snakes have frequently been linked to life and health.
The most notable characteristic of a serpent is that it moves in a wave. It undulates. Not surprisingly, then, the spinal column of a man undulates in an almost serpentine fashion when looked at from the side. In Roman times, according to Plinius, Ovidius, and Elienus, it was believed that the spines of dead men would become snakes.
The construction of the spine features holes on either side of each vertebrae. Sets of nerves from the spinal cord split off from the cluster and pass through these holes, then snake through the flesh to the appropriate places. This allows bio-energy to transfer to each side of the body from the control center at the summit (i.e., the brain). And note that the brain itself has two halves, as the rest of the body. Even though the spinal cord itself does not form a spiral, it functions in a bipolar fashion, coordinating left and right, and the bio-electric impulses travel the cord in two directions. Thus we can understand why eastern religious teachers say that there are two conduits of spiritual energy that run in a double-helix up the spine. The concept of balanced duality—yin and yang, positive and negative, active and passive, rising and falling—is displayed in our anatomy. Symmetry with elevation change is basic to our structure.
Is it a coincidence that our DNA, the biological code from which all life is built, is shaped as a double-helix? Doubtful. This characteristic makes a weird sort of sense once we understand that the Divine Council which cooperated with YHVH (as subordinates) in the creation of the world is led by serpentine spirits. When Elohiym said "Let us make man in our own image," and "Let us go down" to Babel, he was not speaking to himself. He was addressing the other elohiym, the principalities of the spiritual realm (read this for a bit more about the Divine Council). They seem to have embedded something of their own likeness into the core component of biological life.
The helix and the spiral are very fundamental shapes because they convey the concept of rhythmic travel in three dimensions. If you create a point on a grid that is one unit away from the origin point in each of two dimensions (x and y), you get a line at a 45-degree angle. If you keep making points with the same offset of one unit, then connect the points, you get an arc. What do you get if you reverse directions in each dimension one at a time while plotting points? You get a circle. But if each point is then also made higher or lower by one unit, you end up with a spiral. It's a three-dimensional wave.
(A quick tangent: If I were a betting man, I'd put good money on the possibility that the heavenly creatures flying around God's throne are moving in a helical loop.)
The cosmic dragons/serpents of the Divine Council were the most knowledgeable of all beings other than the Son of God himself. When the foremost of these dragons, Satan, appeared unto Adam and Eve in Eden, he directed them to gain understanding from the Tree of Knowledge. They would become like Elohiym, he promised, if they had higher knowledge.
Ever since then, serpents have represented knowledge or wisdom. And not just any kind of knowledge, but the highest, most esoteric and occluded knowledge. Divine wisdom, if you will, which was not intended for mankind in his infancy. And it's certainly not intended for mankind in his current, fallen state.
"Be wise as serpents and harmless as doves." (Matthew 10:16)
The kundalini energy of Hinduism is the idea that the spiritual fire of the cosmic serpents, once unleashed in a human being, is what travels up the spine to the place of the mind's connection to the spirit realm. By this process, the individual moves from being primitive to being enlightened.
Of course, serpents are often venomous. The venom of cosmic serpents is the worst of all, for by deception they kill men spiritually, and thus eternally.
The Rebirth of Enlightenment
Another noteworthy characteristic of serpents is their ability to shed their skin and emerge in a newer, better form. To an occult initiate (i.e., priests and sages of mystery religions), this ability speaks of the transition from darkness to awareness. In fact, initiates of the Mysteries are sometimes called serpents because they had undergone the occultic rebirth, being born again into a new state of consciousness.
Initiates of the mystery religion(s) are following in the footsteps of Satan, who tried to elevate himself to a state that was not meant for him. This quest is elucidated in the Corpus Hermeticum, an Egyptian-Greek compilation of the teachings of the god of Wisdom, Hermes. This god says,
"If then you do not make yourself equal to God, you cannot apprehend God; for like is known by like. Leap clear of all that is corporeal... and become eternal; then you will apprehend God." (Hermeticum XI.20b)
"I went out of myself into an immortal body, and now I am not what I was before. I have been born in mind!" (Hermeticum X111.3)
Examples of Snakes in Religious Records
The earliest religious records involving snakes come to us from Sumeria. In Sumerian myth, Ningishzida, an underworld deity, was one of the two protectors of the supreme spirit's throne. He or she (it's unclear and perhaps both) had a serpent's body but a human head. When sometimes in human form, Ningishzida rode a dragon. His/her symbol was—guess what—two snakes entwined around a pole.
The Sumerian god of the earth, magic, wisdom, and the fresh waters of the abyss was Enki, whom I equate directly with Satan. In early Sumerian literature Enki was given the epithet ushumgal, (also rendered usumgal and ucumgal). It is a composite title that when broken down has three meanings: u, meaning "fiery"; shum, meaning "flying serpent"; and gal, meaning "great." So Enki was a dragon. In one Sumerian poem, Enki is praised as the great dragon who created the fertile land of Edin and made the world lush.
Inanna, the widely-adored fertility and war goddess of Sumer, stole occult knowledge from Enki. In the Sumerian Temple Hymns, she is called "the Great Dragon," and on one cylinder seal she is shown riding a dragon. The Semitic version of Inanna was named Ishtar, Queen of Heaven. This incredibly popular goddess presided over fertility, health, sexual desire, and war. Often portrayed partially or fully nude, she was known as the courtesan of the gods, and her priestesses engaged in temple prostitution. In her aspect as warrior queen, Ishtar held a labrys, a scepter or staff with one or two snakes coiled around it.
In Crete, the Minoans crafted figurines of half-naked goddesses holding snakes or covered in snakes.
In Phoenicia, the temples of Astarte were decorated with snake motifs. Astarte was the goddess of fertility and sexuality, and her cult members were very sexually liberal.
In Armenia, Astghik, goddess of fertility and love, was worshiped through "dragon stones" called vishaps.
In Egypt, the upright cobra is used liberally as the symbol of divinity and magic. The cobra was often placed on the crown of Isis, an important goddess who had acquired the Word of Power from the sun god by magically crafting a snake to poison him. Isis was the goddess of health and fertility, equivalent to Ishtar and Astarte. In fact, the Egyptian word for Isis was Ast, and it's easy to see the etymological connection with the names of other fertility goddesses. The priestesses of Isis carried serpents in procession, and the goddess herself was frequently depicted in serpentine forms.
In Mesoamerica, Ixchel, the Mayan goddess of fertility, motherhood, and healing, wore a snake on her head. The Aztec goddess of fertility was called Chicomecōātl, meaning "seven snakes."
In Greece, at Pythia, the House of Snakes, the high priestess of Apollo provided oracles and tended to a resident snake. Early myths suggest that the temple was initially dedicated to the mother goddess, Gaia, and that the office of the oracle was possessed by the goddesses Themis and Phoebe.
In the southern and southeastern regions of Asia, you won't find a single Hindu temple without snakes carved somewhere, usually prominently. They are considered one of the most powerful symbols of fertility. The mistress of snakes, Manasa, is a demi-goddess who presides over fertility, health, and prosperity for her devotees, but destruction for those who reject her. She is usually depicted as seated beneath a hood of seven cobras.
The 7-Headed Serpent Motif
- Seven-headed serpents are found in the architecture of Cambodian temples like Angkor Wat.
- While meditating for enlightenment, Buddha was protected from a storm by the seven-headed king of serpents, who had come up from the underworld.
- A chiseled slab found among Aztec ruins shows a decapitated hero whose head has been replaced by seven snakes.
- The Mesopotamian god Ninurta slew a seven-headed serpent whose name in Akkadian matches the constellation which the Greeks knew as Hydra.
- To the Greeks, the hyrda was a seven-headed sea serpent killed in the second labor of Hercules.
Evidently some of the ancient mystics understood that seven cosmic serpents were in positions of high authority over the earth. As explained in the books of Genesis and Deuteronomy, seventy immortals called "sons of Elohiym" were placed as rulers over the nations following the rebellion at Babel. The Greeks called them Kosmokraters. This congregation of seventy heavenly beings must be organized into groups of ten rulers under seven principle Seraphiym (i.e., fiery cosmic dragons).
I say "must be" because the Bible contains references to seven-headed beasts having ten horns on its heads.
For instance, when we look in Revelation, we find that Satan, the great red dragon, has seven heads and ten horns (Rev. 12:3) indicating that he rules over the Divine Council of seventy immortals.
In the Book of Daniel we find that the global empire of the last days will have a government consisting of ten kings (Dan. 7:7, 23-24). This fact is reiterated in the Book of Revelation, where a beastly kingdom arises from the sea, just as in Daniel's prophetic dream, having seven heads and ten crowned horns (i.e., kings). The beast from the sea is not the same as the cosmic dragon, however, but is a shadow of it. The apostle John describes the beast from the sea as being a conglomeration of the three other beast kingdoms seen in Daniel's dream (Rev. 13:2), and one of the heads is fatally wounded. The great dragon is not made up of human kingdoms, and immortal Seraphiym cannot be killed, so what John is seeing in ch. 13 is not Satan and his angels.
What we have here is an end-times kingdom which has absorbed the other great kingdoms of the last days to become a global empire. This is Babel, version two. It's heads are the seven prototypes of the Antichrist who ruled from seven sacred hills, or axis mundi, throughout history (Rev. 17:9-11). The ten horns are the rulers of the ten regions of this final Babylon (Rev. 17:12-13).
At this point we must turn out attention to the fact that a woman rides the terrible beast kingdom at the end of the age.
A Wealthy Harlot Rides the beast
"The woman you saw is the great city that rules over the kings of the earth," says an angel to John (Rev. 17:18). When a woman is used as a symbol in the Bible, she almost always represents a collection of people with a shared religion or ideology. In this case, the religion is the mystical polytheism that began at Babel and then spread across the whole earth. She is the dark reflection of the symbol of the righteous woman in the Bible, true Israel (a.k.a. the Bride of Messiah). The assembly of the saints is equated to a city in Rev. 21:2, where John saw "the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband." Likewise, the Great Whore is equated with the city of Babel, where rebellious men collected themselves and concentrated their wicked efforts. Their shared disobedience to YHVH defined them. At the end of the age, a single city will one again play the role of Babel, acting as the focal point for a universal religious (and economic) system.
The fact that the woman riding the Beast is a religious system makes a lot of sense, considering that religious authorities have usually exerted enormous influence over civil authorities. Religion was always the dominant element in ancient world empires, and it will be so again before the end.
The woman is labeled Mystery because her power is in the occluded knowledge of heaven. She is the Way of the Illuminati, of enlightenment through learning from the fallen immortals. She is the Occult in the truest sense of the word.
This woman of Babel embodies the philosophy of the Dragon. Some Old Testament oracles call her the "daughter of Babel." She represents the system of carnal living and occultic worship which sprung out of the rebellion at Babel.
There hasn't been a time since then that she wasn't active in mankind's civilizations, and truly she has committed immorality with the kings of the earth (Rev. 17:2). Specifically, Revelation says that she commits sexual immorality with kings. This is true in the spiritual sense because she teaches polytheism and idolatry, which the Bible labels as adultery against YHVH. But it is also true physically because the priestesses of the fertility goddess of the Babylonian religions would fornicate with each king in an annual ritual act called hieros gamos. This occurred in civilizations throughout the Near East, all of which derived from the polytheistic kingdom of southern Mesopotamia.
Not only is the Whore of Babel clothed with scarlet, but the beast she rides is colored scarlet. The Dragon is colored the red-orange of fire, but the beast kingdom from the sea is scarlet like blood. We associate blood with war, which is fitting for the war-mongering Beast, but scarlet is also the color of fertility because birth is a messy, bloody business, and because blood rises to the surface of the skin and collects in the sexual organs during arousal. It isn't in vain that women put on red lipstick and wear red clothing when they want to appear enticing. This woman of Babel is the color of sex.
She wears purple in addition to red because she is royalty. Purple or royal blue has always been the color of royalty in the Babel-based empires. It so happens that carnelian red and royal blue were the colors used in the iconography of the Mesopotamian fertility goddesses.
The Mesopotamian goddess of fertility, fornication, prosperity, and war—known to the Babylonians as Ishtar—seems to be the source for the harlot who rides the beast. All of the characteristics that Revelation lists for the Mother of Abominations have stark parallels with the cults of the fertility goddesses, including materialism and an economic system based on usury.
There was a real priestess in history who either embodied that goddesses' traits to the fullest or else became deified because of her mastery of the arcane arts, and that woman was the wife of the great emperor, Asshur. (Find much more on that subject in this book.) However, that priestess-queen was simply the epitome of an ideology that began with her ancestor. The true origin of the fertility goddess is, in fact, Eve.
Two Adams and Two Eves
The importance of this lies in the fact that only a one-to-one substitute can satisfy the legal requirement for removing guilt. Justice demands an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth... a man for a man. And so the sacrifice of the second Adam paid the penalty incurred by the first Adam (and everyone under his headship who desires to share in that legal exchange).
So, Y'shua is the new Adam (1 Cor. 15:45-47). If his bride is the Ekklesia (the assembly of the saints), then the saints are the new Eve.
The old Adam represents the carnal man, and the epitome of that is the Man of Lawlessness, the Antichrist. He will be the king of end-times Babel. Consequently, his wife is the queen of Babel. If the Antichrist embodies the culmination of the sin of the first Adam, then the queen of Babel embodies the culmination of the sin of the first Eve.
Although the Whore of Babel is the mother of promiscuity, she is married to the Beast. We know that because she calls herself a queen and not a widow, and she refuses to mourn (Rev. 18:7). Again, this relates to the fertility goddess. One of her main roles was as a grieving widow who greatly lamented the murder of her husband, a demi-god king (who was actually the first head of the beast kingdom, the mightiest emperor of the ancient world). Followers of the fertility goddess would reenact her lamentations every year when the crops died. These rites were so popular that even apostate Israelite women practiced annual mourning for the fallen demi-god on behalf of the Queen of Heaven (Ezk. 8:14).
The apostle Peter wrote to the assembly that "you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world by lust" (2 Pet. 1:4). Peter is saying that sin came into the world because of Eve's lust for things not permitted (and Adam's desire for Eve over Elohiym).
The apostle John breaks it down for us into three components: "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, isn’t the Father’s, but is the world’s" (1 Jhn. 2:16).
All three of these things were in play when the nachash tempted Eve in the Garden.
Compare Eve in Genesis:
"And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat..." (Gen. 3:6)
"The fruit for which your soul longed has gone from you, and all your delicacies and your splendors are lost to you, never to be found again!" (Rev. 18:14)
I am not saying that Eve permanently became a spiritual adulteress or that she reveled in abominations her whole life. I think it very likely that she lived a repentant life and is now resting in Paradise. However, at the moment when she gave in to lust and pride in the Garden, she initiated the lifestyle of adultery and carnality. (Adam also became carnal, but for slightly different reasons.)
It is that lifestyle that leads to discord, hatred, and finally murder among Adam and Eve's offspring. "And in her was found the blood of prophets, and of saints, and of all that were slain upon the earth" (Rev. 18:24).
But you know what they say about Karma... it'll come back to bite you.
Even though Satan created the religion of selfishness and idolatry when he deceived Eve, he hates the woman that he created. Satan's Seed, the Beast that we call the Antichrist, and the other horns of the beast system will eventually throw the woman off and trample her to death. For it is written:
"The ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the prostitute, will make her desolate, will strip her naked, will eat her flesh, and will burn her utterly with fire." (Rev. 17:16)
The King and Queen of Babel as portrayed in Revelation demonstrate the final fate of any couple who live selfish and self-centered lives. There will be no peace. When Adam decided to go along with Eve's mutiny, he thought that he was staying in her good graces and securing them a better future as a couple, but it was actually just the opposite. He was sentencing them to a future of division and discord because you can't have a healthy relationship devoid of the God of relationship. Only when we operate from selfless love, as God does, can we have perfect fellowship, unity, and happiness with one another.
Seems like an easy choice to me
"Come out of her, my people, that you have no participation in her sins, and that you don’t receive of her plagues..." (Rev. 18:4).