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Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer 
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Post Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer

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To kick off discussion on this chapter of Christ in Egypt on the continuity between the Gospel story of John the Baptist and the Egyptian God Anubis, the above painting by Leonardo Da Vinci of the Baptism of Christ has an amazing astrotheological content, illustrating that the astrotheological back story continued to be understood as a secret esoteric meaning for the surface narrative of Christianity. The stars I have added to the painting (link to source) are in the shape of the constellation of Aquarius for John, and of Pisces for the arms of Christ. It is obvious that Leonardo has used his acute and accurate natural observation of the stars as his blueprint for this painting, matching to the esoteric claim that John the Baptist represents Aquarius and Jesus Christ represents Pisces.

DM Murdock proves that this use of blueprints occurs abundantly throughout the Gospels, in this case with John the Baptist based squarely on the jackal-headed god of Egypt, Anubis. I should say at this point, to mark a topic that is in need of expansion, other contemporary writers on the myth of Christ, notably Earl Doherty, barely mention the theological continuity between the Gospels and Egypt. Murdock draws extensively on older research, notably by Gerald Massey in the nineteenth century, but it remains the case that Egyptian parallels are viewed with suspicion. This intellectual framework for how the New Testament authors developed their ideas from older myth is an expansion on the basic mythicist idea that the Bible is fiction; it shows the source of the fiction and starts to explain why it found such ready resonance in popular culture. Murdock is a pioneer on astrotheology as a lucid theoretical alternative to orthodoxy that explains the motivation of the early writers.

For the Egyptians, Anubis was the ‘preparer of the way of the other world’, much as John the Baptist came to prepare the way of the Lord (p238). A jackal is literally a ‘voice crying in the wilderness’ (p240), (and cf Micah 1:8) as is the metaphorical John, with his diet of wild honey and locusts and his clothes of camel hair. An early Christian Father, John Chrysostom, tells us that John had a boat of gold to transport the souls of the righteous, an image that is eerily similar to the Egyptian Coffin Text description of Anubis as “the celestial ferryman” (p241).

Baptism is found abundantly in Egypt, as a rite of purification. Here we see antecedents of the Gospel story of the baptism of Christ. The jackal has a role in purification in its scavenging of dead corpses, preventing putrefaction and disease. Anubis expands this role as the god of mummification (interestingly explored by Neil Gaiman in American Gods). In Greek, to anoint is to Christ. So when John anoints Jesus with the living water of the Jordan River, he declares him as Christ. The holy dove that appears at the scene is a direct steal from the Egyptian image of the spirit, as Murdock explains in her analysis of the love of Isis and Osiris as intermediated by this type of magical bird, in this case a kite. The Book of the Dead speaks of how Horus is washed and purified in order to be declared the beloved son of Osiris (p251).

Murdock discusses the old association between this baptism motif and the constellation of Aquarius, the water bearer. Apparently there is a tradition of seeing Aquarius as headless, an image reminding of Salome arranging delivery of the head of John the Baptist on a platter. Anubis too, was fetishised as a headless animal skin. In the myth, Anubis is decapitated, coming back to life with the head of a jackal.

Overall, this Anubis-John connection illustrates the depth of the Egyptian influence on Christianity. Early Christians even linked Christ to Anubis. Christians took motifs that had proven popular, and carnalized them in a historical story to appropriate older myth. The transitional Greco-Egyptian religion of Serapis provided a platform for Christianity to kick away the Egyptian ladder while taking advantage of it in their new syncretic mythology.



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Anubis the Purifier v. John the Baptist

The comparison between the Egyptian god Anubis, also known as Anpu or Anup, and the biblical figure of John the Baptist, is one of the more interesting, in my opinion. There are several points that need to be made to depict accurately the milieu in which this parallel was developed, including the precedent of the Babylonian fish-god Oannes, a name virtually identical to Ioannes (Ἰωάννης), which is "John" in Greek. (See my book Suns of God for a discussion of the parallels between Oannes and John.)

In this analysis, I focus first on the concept of "baptism," showing that it was widely practiced in the pre-Christian world, a fact verified by its inclusion in the New Testament before Christ begins his ministry. Indeed, as the gospel tale goes, Jesus himself is baptized by John the Baptist, who was obviously already practicing baptism before Christ's arrival onto the scene. Early Church fathers such as Tertullian (On Baptism, 5.9) are cited as likewise validating this Pagan practice:

Quote:
For washing is the channel through which [the heathen] are initiated into some sacred rites--of some notorious Isis or Mithras. The gods themselves likewise they honour by washings.

The Catholic Encyclopedia is likewise quoted as discussing baptism in many cultures, dating back thousands of years, including the Babylonian, Assyrian, Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Hindu. The fact of baptism/ritual washing being present in Egypt is obviously one germane to the current discussion. Jews also engaged in ritual washing, as well as a "baptism in blood," exemplified repeatedly in the Old Testament, in scenes where the priests are slaughtering animals and sprinkling their blood upon the congregation. This baptism in blood is not only reproduced in the Mithraic cultus, wherein the initiate is bathed in blood as a bull is being slaughtered, but it is also reflected in the New Testament scene in which the Jews are depicted as calling for Jesus's blood to be upon them. (Matthew 27:5)

The Egyptian baptism is therefore associated with Isis, whose popularity around the Mediterranean during the era in question, that of Christianity's early formative years, was enormous. Indeed, Isis occupied the central stage in many places prior to and during the first centuries of the Christian era, all the way from Egypt to Great Britain. She brought along her entourage, which included not only Osiris and Horus but also Anpu or Anubis, who was likewise extremely popular, as the guardian of the underworld and death. It is likely that, along with Mithraism, the cult of Anubis held a special place among undertakers/morticians.

The Cult of the Dead

Although we rarely think about such unpleasant matters, it may not be difficult to imagine that throughout history those people willing to take care of dead bodies have been fairly wealthy and powerful. As in other professions, such as masonry, carpentry, smithcraft and many more, ancient undertakers had their guild, and, also like these others, they had their own gods and goddesses or religious figureheads of some sort. There are many instances of carpenter gods, for example, a subject I discuss in my book Suns of God: Krishna, Buddha and Christ Unveiled. "Oddly" enough, the Nazarenes were a carpenter sect, which explains why the fictional Jesus is made to be "of Nazareth." In reality, the word "Narazeth" in the original Greek is more often than not translated as "Nazarene," and I maintain that, by that designation, "Jesus" simply represents the healing carpenter god of the Nazarene brotherhood. He is also clearly the "genius" of the mason guild, as I likewise show in Suns of God, a relevant excerpt of which can be found in my ebook "Jesus Christ, Mason of God."

In any event, the vast business of dying and burying the dead assuredly made Anubis quite popular in both the Egyptian and Roman worlds. Like John the Baptist, Anubis is deemed the Purifier, using water and symbols to purify the dead in their journey to the underworld and afterlife. Indeed, if one wanted to become immortal and pass into the heavenly fields, one must hope for purification by Anubis. Thus, the god takes a central role in the Egyptian religion; his importance cannot be underestimated. Nor can it be ignored that he was known and popular outside of Egypt during the precise centuries when Christianity began to be formulated.

In Christ in Egypt (235), I discuss the spread of the Egyptian religion, remarking:

Quote:
The jackal-headed god Anubis was known well enough to the Greeks by the time of Plato in the fourth century [BCE] that in his book Gorgias (482b) the philosopher depicts his mentor, Socrates, as swearing "by the dog, the God of the Egyptians."...

In his Antiquities of the Jews (18.3.4), Josephus also tells a story about Anubis, demonstrating that the god was famous enough in the Roman Empire at the end of the first century to warrant mention by the historian.

The profound importance of Anubis is further illustrated by his considerable presence in the Egyptian texts and images... Anubis is said to preside "over the pure [holy] land." In the Coffin Texts..., the deceased says he is "within the arms of Anubis in the Pure Place."

Baptism as Purification

Some of the Egyptian images depict Anubis as purifying the deceased - commonly viewed as "the Osiris" - while others show Horus doing the same. The effect remains that Anubis is the purifier or baptizer of Osiris, quite similar to the ritual of John baptizing Jesus. As I discuss in CIE, the words "purification" and "baptism" are essentially interchangeable, and in antiquity there was often one word conveying both these concepts. Anubis is thus not only an embalmer, as he is commonly known to be, but also a purifier, as the deceased's body must be washed before passage into the netherworld.

Image
(Renouf, Egyptian Book of the Dead, 51)

Anubis and John as the Summer Solstice Sun

Another fascinating point of contact between Anubis and John is their role as personification of the summer solstice sun. Concerning Anubis's summer-solstice significance, in CIE (239-40), I state:

Quote:
In keeping with the interchangeability of gods within mythology, Anubis is identified not only with Thoth but also with Osiris, his father, depending on the myth. Osiris and Anubis alike not only were associated with the afterlife but also symbolized both the star Sirius and different aspects of the sun, Osiris frequently representing the sun at night, while, like Horus, Anubis was the sun at the horizon, whether rising or setting. According to Plutarch...Anubis is the horizon itself, representing the line between light and dark. He may thus also be considered "twilight." As the baby whom she suckles with her finger, Anubis (the horizon) is Isis's "attendant," who accompanies her when she seeks her own newborn son (the rising sun). In addition, like Osiris, Anubis is the "god of the dead or the night god."...

Anubis is further the "'giver of Sirius,' the starry opener of the year," corresponding to the summer solstice, which just happens to be the traditional nativity and feast of John the Baptist... Indeed, St. John's Nativity or Feast occurs on June 24th, the last of the three days the sun "stands still" during the summer solstice. Like John, who was said to be born six months before Jesus, Anubis was born shortly before Horus. The connection between John the Baptist and Anubis becomes more pointed when it is realized that, while John's fest days is on the summer solstice, Anubis actually represents the personification of the summer solstice...

There is much more to this fascinating subject, which I discuss in some 25 pages in Christ in Egypt.

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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
What are you talking about? You have not been censored. Re-post if you made a mistake.



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Quote:
Unless I get some feedback here explaining why I cannot post about Anubis and my own connection to Murdock's Christ in Egypt book and my thoughts about her book why should I continue to participate.


Your post had nothing to do with this thread, I had moved it earlier today. The closest you'd come to mentioning Anup was the "anu" within Immanuel in paragraph 2. But you did mention Murdock's name twice. Strangely, you mentioned "atheists" 8 times. I had assumed this thread was a summary of your feud with atheists, rather than having anything to do with Anup.



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
My beliefs are irrelevant. Your post contained not a single reference to Anub, not even as an explanation of how your post may possibly have been related to this thread.

If you're going to post here, just please at least discuss the topic more directly.



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Stephen, you're acting like an old fundamentalist that used to post here and claim that we wanted to censor his posts. Of course BT is probably one of the most fair forums on the web. This particular fundie trolled, and trolled, and trolled to the point where no other forum would have tolerated it. But these so-called intolerant atheists here did tolerate it. And they are currently tolerating you too. Moving an out of context off subject post to a proper thread is not censorship. I read the post in question on the proper thread for it. Nothing was censored.

So what have you to add that is relevant to this thread on Anup the Baptizer?


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
biomystic wrote:
Wow. My post about how the Anubis/John the Baptist motif is being reenacted in real life in our times has been censored here.

You make me laugh Stephen. I see you have reposted your "post about how the Anubis/John the Baptist motif is being reenacted" which does not mention either Anubis or John, except for an extremely cryptic allusion to coyote. You will have to be more explicit and on-topic if you want a sensible discussion. Like Tat, I read your post on the Personal Revelation thread where Interbane moved it, and it never occurred to me it could have been better placed here. You should thank Interbane for trying to keep some order in the discussion.
Quote:
I couldn't talk about this on Murdock's forum and it looks like I can't talk about it here. This forum too is a place where atheists are allowed to show their bigotry against theists and theists are not allowed to respond. How long does this intellectual dishonesty and cowardice going to continue in atheist circles? I'm quite used to it fundamentalist Christian forums but this past year, I've learned that the atheist fundamentalist mindset goes the same route, both desperate to stop any serious criticism of their fundamentalist belief system.

Your phrases " bigotry ... dishonesty and cowardice" are completely uncalled for and you should apologize. No wonder you got banned from other forums when you carry on like that. I suppose you find it therapeutic to let off steam in an attempt to ignite a flame war and let a few of your 'issues' hang out, but we do prefer polite collegial discussion here that actually responds to what people say, rather than inventing straw men.

Quote:
Well, I am not going to waste time with bigots of any stripe, including atheists. Unless I get some feedback here explaining why I cannot post about Anubis and my own connection to Murdock's Christ in Egypt book and my thoughts about her book why should I continue to participate. It's not a level playing field here by any means.
As Interbane suggested, you are welcome to "post about Anubis" on this thread. You have not done that yet.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
biomystic wrote:
theists are not allowed to respond.


What, precisely, do you think you are doing with this statement if not responding?


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Last edited by R. LeBeaux on Sun Sep 18, 2011 10:15 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
R LeB - you attribute this comment to me, when it was made by biomystic - please edit.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Robert Tulip wrote:
R LeB - you attribute this comment to me, when it was made by biomystic - please edit.


Sorry! It's fixed.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Following the comments above, Booktalk Owner Chris OConnor has acted to ban biomystic. This decision was taken in view of information about biomystic's previous behavior on other forums, and assessment that his behavior here would inevitably follow the same disruptive path.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
Robert Tulip wrote:
Following the comments above, Booktalk Owner Chris OConnor has acted to ban biomystic. This decision was taken in view of information about biomystic's previous behavior on other forums, and assessment that his behavior here would inevitably follow the same disruptive path.


This seems a bit harsh to me. Are you, or Chris, saying that "behavior," as it applies to expressing an opinion or participating in a debate, can be censored here? I'd like to hear some detailed justification of this. I have no interest one way or another in biomystic, but I do have an interest in censorship, which I abhor. Please enlighten me on this situation so I can continue to contribute with a clear conscience. Otherwise (not that I think this will cause concern for anyone), I am afraid I will have to quit posting here.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
"What the research eventually demonstrates is that there are continuities within religious ideation that date back to extremely early times and that reflect much about the human psyche in general."

This a quot from Murdock on a different blog but I would like to apply it here to the Baptizer. Can someone direct me to some reading that might quench the burning question in my mind: "Why?" What is it in the human psyche that requires a baptism? What is it we are trying to rid ourselves of?

Sorry if I am off topic. I am really just looking for some direction so I can better assimilate this information. Thanks



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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
R. LeBeaux wrote:
Robert Tulip wrote:
Following the comments above, Booktalk Owner Chris OConnor has acted to ban biomystic. This decision was taken in view of information about biomystic's previous behavior on other forums, and assessment that his behavior here would inevitably follow the same disruptive path.


This seems a bit harsh to me. Are you, or Chris, saying that "behavior," as it applies to expressing an opinion or participating in a debate, can be censored here? I'd like to hear some detailed justification of this. I have no interest one way or another in biomystic, but I do have an interest in censorship, which I abhor. Please enlighten me on this situation so I can continue to contribute with a clear conscience. Otherwise (not that I think this will cause concern for anyone), I am afraid I will have to quit posting here.


Information sent to us indicates that biomystic is a "cyberstalker", with an obsessive interest in the general topic of this book, but an inability to engage in logical discussion due to a focus solely on promoting his personal views, and a tendency to insult others who question him or seek to base opinion on evidence. This is a one-off case, due to the related prior history at other boards.

Booktalk also has precedents. As Tat mentioned above, earlier Booktalk experience with proselytizing trolls has been difficult, with one such case leading many sensible people to leave, after he was allowed to preach young earth creationism here for several years. This is a judgment call by the board owner.

Free speech here is entirely due to the enormous effort and expense that Chris OConnor has put in to build Booktalk as a community where free thought is welcomed. No one has a right to abuse this platform by making it difficult for others to participate. The board rules require politeness and engagement. When individuals persist in posting comments that do not engage with others and are rude, they put themselves on a path towards being banned.


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Post Re: Christ in Egypt: Anup the Baptizer
He's cyber stalked Murdock to the point where it's become uncomfortable for her. Biomystic has become rather obsessed with her and it's gone a bit beyond a playful fascination. Chris must be aware of this history and has, as I can see now, made some decisions based on what he's learned about it. And I stand behind and support the decisions that have been made thus far.


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Last edited by tat tvam asi on Tue Sep 20, 2011 9:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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