religion

Gematria: Esoteric Numerology Based on the Hebrew Kabbalah

Having long been fascinated with the mysterious power of numbers, enough to write two books on the topic, we often sidestepped the subject of numerology because of its lack of a true scientific basis.  Yet ancient and esoteric traditions looked at numerology as not only a tool for divination, but a method of acquiring knowledge beyond that of the five senses, even as a path to know the divine itself.

W.E.B. DuBois once stated, “When you have mastered numbers, you will in fact no longer be reading numbers, any more than you read words when reading books. You will be reading meanings...Read more

Discovery of the Talatat: Akhenaten’s Preserved Stone Diaries

The illustrious Eighteenth Dynasty burst onto the vibrant stage of ancient Egyptian history with great import, for it emerged following the expulsion of the reviled Hyksos (Second Intermediate Period). Successive pharaohs left no stone unturned to celebrate that unique victory which had enabled them to break the shackles of foreign domination and lay the foundations for the New Kingdom (circa 1550 BC). The state god Amun (the Hidden One) was heralded for granting Egypt success in its arduous mission.

By the time Pharaoh Amenhotep III (also known as The Magnificent) “joined the gods...Read more

Defeating Death: The Ancient Quest for Eternal Life through Artifacts, Divine Foods and Elixirs

The very earliest written histories reveal that humanity has had the universal desire to live forever, and has sought countless ways in which to defeat the utterly relentless inevitabilities of time and mortality.

Whether bestowed by deities, attained through acts of extreme good, conjured through magical objects or potions, received as a form of punishment, or acquired through a mishap of science, tales of eternal human life exist in numerous legends, myths, religions, ancient historical texts, and they even present themselves in the modern era through life-extension and cryogenic...Read more

Creation Stories of Africa: The Children of Kings

Africa is a vast continent full of contrasts, and as one would expect, has many and varied stories of creation. Most countries in Africa are made up of different tribes of people, rather than one specific race, so it makes more sense to look at regional stories as opposed to mythologies based on individual nations.

 

The Children of Oduduwa, West Africa

The Yoruba people from West Africa call themselves the Children of Oduduwa. Oduduwa is held to be the first of all the kings, who came from the east and ruled over ancient Ife, where, with Obatala, he began the creation of the world. Obatala created the first humans out of clay, while Oduduwa became the first divine king of the Yoruba. He sent his sons and daughters out with crowns to rule over all of the other Yoruba kingdoms and all the Yoruba royal families claim descent through them back to Oduduwa...Read more

Suttee: Deadly Ancient Lessons on How to be a ‘Good Wife’ and a ‘Redeemed Widow’

A poor, 60-year-old barber in rural India, who had been ill for some time, died in his simple mud hut in 2002. The next morning, his widow announced her intention to commit suttee (or sati) —the ancient practice in which a widow burns herself to death on her husband's funeral pyre.

The villagers gathered to watch as the widow calmly walked to her husband's funeral pyre and sat down on it. The crowd lit incense sticks and made offerings of coconuts and betel leaves as she cradled her husband's head in her lap. She sat on the pyre for two hours before her eldest son set light to it....Read more

The Sacred Three in Asian Beliefs: Triple Gods, Tridevi, and the Three Treasures

Number three has been considered sacred for over many centuries throughout the world. Its depictions of the triads, triplicates and trinities have also existed in many cultures with various interpretations.

The possible oldest interpretation of the number three is that it represents completion, and many cultures today still interpret it as such—that is, something which has gone through its beginning, middle, and its end. The number three could then be interpreted as the number of reproduction or the continuation of things. From the union of oneness (1) and duality (2) comes the...Read more

The Origins of Evil: The Story of Human Spirituality and Belief Systems

Evil is as old as humanity. We live in a world of duality. Darkness and light. Good and evil. Up and down. In and out. Heaven and Hell. But which came first—or did these dual concepts evolve side by side as our primitive understanding of the world around us became more sophisticated over time?

The concept of evil has changed over time to mirror our own evolving behavior as human beings...Read more

The Fierce Mythical Unicorn Travelled the World and Through Cultures, Killing and Healing

Legend speaks of a powerful creature, a wild beast that is both an unpredictable, deadly foe and a gentle and innocent spirit. The unicorn, a creature with a single, spiraling horn centered on its forehead has become one of the most popular and enduring of mythological creatures. Like dragons, they are unique legendary figures with an image that is instantly recognizable all over the globe, with tales reaching back through ancient epochs.

Stemming from text mistranslations and misunderstood travelers’ tales, stories of the elusive creatures cemented their place in ancient record...Read more