Bible Myths and their Parallels in other Religions Being a Comparison of the Old and New Testament Myths and Miracles with those of the Heathen Nations of Antiquity Considering also their Origin and Meaning
[495:1] At the end of his career, the Sun enters the lowest regions, the bowels of the earth, therefore nearly all Sun-gods are made to "descend into hell," and remain there for three days and three nights, for the reason that from the 22d to the 25th of December, the Sun apparently remains in the same place. Thus Jonah, a personification of the Sun (see Chap. IX.), who remains three days and three nights in the bowels of the earth—typified by a fish—is made to pay: "Out of the belly of hell cried I, and thou heardst my voice."
"The mighty Lord appeared in the form of a man, and enlightened those places which had ever before been in darkness; and broke asunder the fetters which before could not be broken; and with his invincible power visited those who sat in the deep darkness by iniquity, and the shadow of death by sin. Then the King of Glory trampled upon Death, seized the Prince of Hell, and deprived him of all his power." (Description of Christ's Descent into Hell. Nicodemus: Apoc.)
[495:4] "The women weeping for Tammuz was no more than expressive of the Sun's loss of power in the winter quarter." (King's Gnostics, p. 102. See also, Cox: Aryan Mytho., vol. ii. p. 113.)
After remaining for three days and three nights in the lowest regions, the Sun begins to ascend, thus he "rises from the dead," as it were, and "ascends into heaven."
[496:1] Bonwick: Egyptian Belief, p. 174.
[496:2] Anacalypsis, vol. ii. p. 100.
[496:3] Aryan Mythology, vol. ii. p. 125.
[496:4] Egyptian Belief, p. 182.
[496:6] Origin of Religions, p. 264.
[497:1] Origin of Religions, p. 268.
[497:2] Aryan Mythology, vol. i. p. 384.
[497:3] Origin of Religion, pp. 264-268.
[498:1] The number twelve appears in many of the Sun-myths. It refers to the twelve hours of the day or night, or the twelve moons of the lunar year. (Cox: Aryan Mythology, vol. i. p. 165. Bonwick: Egyptian Belief, p. 175.)
Osiris, the Egyptian Saviour, had twelve apostles. (Bonwick, p. 175.)
In all religions of antiquity the number twelve, which applies to the twelve signs of the zodiac, are reproduced in all kinds and sorts of forms. For instance: such are the twelve great gods; the twelve apostles of Osiris; the twelve apostles of Jesus; the twelve sons of Jacob, or the twelve tribes; the twelve altars of James; the twelve labors of Hercules; the twelve shields of Mars; the twelve brothers Arvaux; the twelve gods Consents; the twelve governors in the Manichean System; the adectyas of the East Indies; the twelve asses of the Scandinavians; the city of the twelve gates in the Apocalypse; the twelve wards of the city; the twelve sacred cushions, on which the Creator sits in the cosmogony of the Japanese; the twelve precious stones of the rational, or the ornament worn by the high priest of the Jews, &c., &c. (See Dupuis, pp. 39, 40.)
[499:1] See Mallet's Northern Antiquities, p. 505.
[499:2] Luke, ii. 32.
[499:3] John, xii, 46.
[499:4] John, ix. v.
[499:5] I. John, i. 5.
[500:1] Monumental Christianity, p. 117.
[501:1] See Monumental Christianity, pp. 189, 191, 192, 238, and 296.
[501:2] See Bonwick's Egyptian Belief, p. 283.
[501:3] King's Gnostics, p. 68.
[501:4] Ibid. p. 137.
[501:6] Hist. of Our Lord in Art, vol. i. p. 31.
[502:1] Geikie: Life of Christ, vol. i. p. 151.
[502:2] Monumental Christianity, p. 231.
[502:3] King's Gnostics, p. 48.
[502:4] Ibid. p. 68.
[502:5] See Bell's Pantheon, vol. i. p. 13.
[503:1] Following are the words of the decree now in the Vatican library: "In quibusdam sanctorum imaginum picturis agnus exprimitur, &c. Nos igitur veteres figuras atque umbras, et veritatis notas, et signa ecclesiæ tradita, complectentes, gratiam, et veritatem anteponimus, quam ut plenitudinem legis acceptimus. Itaque id quod perfectum est, in picturis etiam omnium oculis subjiciamus, agnum illum qui mundi peccatum tollit, Christum Deum nostrum, loco veteris Ayni, humanâ formâ posthæ exprimendum decrevimus," &c.
[504:1] "The solar horse, with two serpents upon his head (the Buddhist Aries) is Buddha's symbol, and Aries is the symbol of Christ." (Arthur Lillie: Buddha and Early Buddhism, p. 110.)
[504:2] Quoted by Lillie: Buddha and Early Buddhism, p. 93.
[504:3] Quoted by King: The Gnostics &c., p. 138.
[505:1] Quoted by King: The Gnostics, &c., p. 49.
[505:2] Ibid. p. 45.
Mithras, the Persian Saviour, was represented with long flowing locks.
Izdubar, the god and hero of the Chaldeans, was represented with long flowing locks of hair (Smith: Chaldean Account of Genesis, p. 193), and so was his counterpart, the Hebrew Samson.
"The Sâkya-prince (Buddha) is described as an Aryan by Buddhistic tradition; his face was reddish, his hair of light color and curly, his general appearance of great beauty." (Bunsen: The Angel-Messiah, p. 15.)
"Serapis has, in some instances, long hair formally turned back, and disposed in ringlets hanging down upon his breast and shoulders like that of a woman. His whole person, too, is always enveloped in drapery reaching to his feet." (Knight: Ancient Art and Mythology, p. 104.)
"As for yellow hair, there is no evidence that Greeks have ever commonly possessed it; but no other color would do for a solar hero, and it accordingly characterizes the entire company of them, wherever found." (Fiske: Myths and Mythmakers, p. 202.)
Helios (the Sun) is called by the Greeks the "yellow-haired." (Goldzhier: Hebrew Mytho., p. 137.)
The Sun's rays is signified by the flowing golden locks which stream from the head of Kephalos, and fall over the shoulders of . (Cox: Aryan Mytho., vol. i. p. 107.)
Perseus, son of the virgin Danae, was called the "Golden Child." (Ibid. vol. ii. p. 58.) "The light of early morning is not more pure than was the color on his fair cheeks, and the golden locks streamed bright over his shoulders, like the rays of the sun when they rest on the hills at midday." (Tales of Ancient Greece, p. 83.)
The Saviour Dionysus wore a long flowing robe, and had long golden hair, which streamed from his head over his shoulders. (Aryan Mythology, vol. ii. p. 293.)
Ixion was the "Beautiful and Mighty," with golden hair flashing a glory from his head, dazzling as the rays which stream from Helios, when he drives his chariot up the heights of heaven; and his flowing robe glistened as he moved, like the vesture which the Sun-god gave to the wise maiden Medeia, who dwelt in Kolchis. (Tales of Ancient Greece, p. 47.)
Theseus enters the city of Athens, as Christ Jesus is said to have entered Jerusalem, with a long flowing robe, and with his golden hair tied gracefully behind his head. His "soft beauty" excites the mockery of the populace, who pause in their work to jest with him. (Cox: Aryan Mythology, vol. ii. p. 63.)
Thus we see that long locks of golden hair, and a flowing robe, are mythological attributes of the Sun.
[506:1] Cox: Aryan Mythology, vol. i. p. 49.
[506:2] We have already seen (in Chapter XX.) that the word "Christ" signifies the "Anointed," or the "Messiah," and that many other personages beside Jesus of Nazareth had this title affixed to their names.
[507:2] These three letters, the monogram of the Sun, are the celebrated , which are to be seen in Roman Catholic churches at the present day, and which are now the monogram of the Sun-god Christ Jesus. (See Chapter XXXVI.)
We now come to the last, but certainly not least, question to be answered; which is, what do we really know of the man Jesus of Nazareth? How much of the Gospel narratives can we rely upon as fact?
Jesus of Nazareth is so enveloped in the mists of the past, and his history so obscured by legend, that it may be compared to footprints in the sand. We know some one has been there, but as to what manner of man he may have been, we certainly know little as fact. The Gospels, the only records we have of him,[508:1] have been proven, over and over again, unhistorical and legendary; to state anything as positive about the man is nothing more nor less than assumption; we can therefore conjecture only. Liberal writers philosophize and wax eloquent to little purpose, when, after demolishing the historical accuracy of the New Testament, they end their task by eulogizing the man Jesus, claiming for him the highest praise, and asserting that he was the best and grandest of our race;[508:2] but this manner of reasoning (undoubtedly consoling to many) facts do not warrant. We may consistently revere his name, and place it in the long list of the great and noble, the reformers and religious teachers of the past, all of whom have done their part in bringing about the freedom we now enjoy, but to go beyond this, is, to our thinking, unwarranted.