Thursday, January 18, 2007

Cosmic Renewal

A friend of mine Siu Fung from World Vision wrote an insightful article. It is about God's creation, the environment and "cosmic renewal", particularly water. I hope you will enjoy reading it as much as I do.


888 said...

Water is a very special substance- mostly overlooked as to its spiritual qualities.
It has heavenly qualities- as indicated in the Hebrew.


Kitty Cheng said...

Wow thinking of water in terms of its spiritual / heavenly qualities? Sounds intriguing. Can you tell me more Bruce?

888 said...

Hi Kitty,
I have a lot to unpack here. I will start by unpacking my "wet pack" :0).

Of course it is well known that water is the preferred substance of purification. You know that if you were unclean you cleaned up by going into water. In excavations of priests dwellings in Israel they have found pools with steps on two sides so that the Jewish priests could descend into the water and reascend cleansed.

There is also the concept of ablutions before prayer in the Muslim and other religions.

There is the correspondence in the names: Mayim-water and Heaven-Shamayim.

This site goes further:
The Hidden Structures of Water

"The throne of glory stands suspended in the air, and hovers over the
face of the waters, by the breath of the mouth of the Holy One,
Blessed Be He, and at his command, like a dove which hovers over the
nest." (Bereshit 1:1-2)

"In other words, water is the "footstool" of the Throne of Glory and
the "skin" as it were, of the Holy Spirit.
From the Hebrew spellings of the words for "water" and "heaven" we
observe that the former is a derivation of the latter...

"Immediately we see that water "comes" from heaven -- in a sense, it
is "heaven" with two letters missing: Shamayim becomes Mayim -- which
is to say, "water" is equivalent to "heaven" -- but without the
latter's first and third letters. Put another way, water is "heaven"
without whatever the letters shin and yud represent. Or,
conversely, "water" contains whatever the three letters it shares in
common with "heaven" symbolize. Thus, the rain that falls from
heaven, the "living water", the holy medium of spiritual
transformation, is an extraction of heaven yet lacking its full

Now in the Christian religion we need to to look at the Mass and Holy Water...perhaps another time.
Enough for now.

888 said...

Dear Kitty,
As I said I have a lot to unpack on this point.
As Dr. Rittelmeyer said "All earlier religion was water".
We know that there was a form of water Communion in the Mithraic religion and the Manichean (rememer Augustine's formatives years).

And what of Paul:
Paul & Mithras Worship
-Argues that Paul was more influenced by the Mystery religions than Judaism.

"We learn that Tarsus, which Acts identifies as Paul's birthplace, was the center of Mithras worship, whose initiates "either drank the blood of the sacred bull or drank a chalice of wine as a symbolic representation of that blood" (p.25). Later, Wilson does not hesitate to see Paul's understanding of the sacrificial nature of Christ's death as being "in the same light that the followers of Mithras saw the death of the sacrificial bull" (p.166); or to link Paul's very un-Jewish concept of the sacramental Lord's Supper (1 Corinthians 11:23f) with Greek cultic precedents; its very name, kuriakon deipnon, was "borrowed from the Mithraic mysteries" (p.165). He observes that "there is not the slightest suggestion by Paul that this tradition derives from anyone who was actually with Jesus on the night before he died." That Jesus, a pious Jew, could have asked his disciples "to drink a cup of blood, even symbolically, is unthinkable" (p.25), since the drinking of blood was one of the most fundamental taboos in Jewish life. Rather, Wilson concludes that "Paul believed he had received instruction from Jesus himself about the institution of this great Christian sacrament."

The Roman version of the Mithraic Mysteries appeared in Rome in the latter part of 100AD. That is when it takes a foothold in the west. Probably it was in existence in Tarsus, Turkey, well before that.
Eduoard Shuré has Pilate knowing something about the mysteries of Mithra in his "The Great Initiates".

From my encyclopaedia:
According to Plutarch the rites of Mithra were first brought to the attention of the west by Circilian pirates captured in 67 B.C.

Paul appears to be as much a follower of Mithras as a Jew.

Warm Regards,

Kitty Cheng said...

Thanks Bruce for all the unpacking ;) Very interesting information!