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  1. #1
    Fizban "The Fabulous" Guest

    History Of The Wisdom

    Both the Bible and the history book, while being compiled for us, have passed through intensive censorships, besides suffering at the hands of unenlightened translators.

    the result is that our orthodox education, both in reeligion and history, is often mislead, and keeps us in complete ignorance of large and vital aspects of humanity's evolution.

    Much of the records of the knowledge to which we would like to have access has been carefully guarded, secreted and even destroyed during periods when it was considered more expedient to keep people in ignorance.

    nevertheless, there is still a wealth of literature all over the world awaiting the explorer. If he pursues his inquiries with patience and discrimination the following points will come to light.

    The history of this earth is infinitely older then the modern historian admits. There exist many and various sects, orders, and religious and philosophical fraternities, who possess exhaustive records and treatises describing evolution of man upon this planet, and of the part that our solar system plays in the Cosmic scheme.

    If the ppure and the orginal root of these different beliefs can be uncovered, it will be found to be identical in most respects. In each case we willl discover that the 'One God' over all was acknowledged, and that the existence of the Hierarchy was well understood, and was tabulated and represented under the names of various gods and goddesses, nature spirits and demons.

    The seven Great Spirits, their colours, attributes and elements, the seven planes and man's sevenfold bodies were all carefully studied and analysed. The great Cosmic and Periods, as ruled by the Signs of the Zodiac and all the astrological influnces, both psychic and chemical, were subject to intensive research. The laws of Rebirth and Karma were embodied in all the beliefs.

    We find that at the zenith of their civilization the various great ancient nations had perfected this knowledge and by its means produced immortal monuments to their science, such as the Great Pyramid. It transpires that such a golden period, in the history of a nation was followed by crystallization, stagnancy, degeneration and finally break-up, leaving only distorted misunderstood relics of the once great knowledge.

    We learn that such influences which provide for the continual recommencing of man's lesson on a higher turn of the Spiral of Evolution, so that his development becomes ever subtler and more complete. Before each new surge forward of enlighenment man must be borne down within the crouching wave and submerge in darkness and ignorance.

    In all these records refernce to the Golden Age which occurred on the continent of Atlantis, which was said to have submerged during its proceeding period of degeneration.

    Mankind was said to have been taught the Ageless Wisdom by the gods themselves upon Atlantis, and to have carried its remnants with them in all directions as they fled to safer land. the story of Noah and the Ark is repeated in many tongues and in not very varied guise.

    The Atlanteans were said to have founded the Egyptain culture and to have built the Sphinxe, and their descendents the Pyramid.

    It is beleived that the early Egyptain religion thus founded was the father of all faiths which spread across Europe and Asia, as far north as the Esquimaux and Laplanders, and as far as east as China and Japen. In South America also perhaps the greatest of the Atlantean colonizations took place, but at a still earlier date.

    There have been at least 1000 books written about Atlantis. The remains of its root language are said to be found in identical form among the Welsh, Irish, Besques, Western Spanish, and on the Canary Islands, Azores, Eater Island and in Mexico; as well as certain practices and beliefs. The Druids of England were beleived to be descendants of the Atlanteans who built stonehenge and other little understood monuments in the British Isles.

    We find also that a realization and consciousness of the inner realities was the the prerogative of ancient man all ove rthe world even if he lived as a barbarian. He did not need to beleive in anafter life and a world of spirits. He communed with the dead. He knew of the nature spirits, who ruled the elements; he understood their qunlities, colours and thier prototypes among the animals; he used animals effigies to represent them.

    The Zuni Indians prayed to the seven great nature gods by means of the seven colours painted on thier prayer sticks.

    The Tibetans also pray in accordance with colours, and designed different colours masks embellished with a large third eye for their 'devil-dances'

    In New Guinea the doctors paint their patients with colours of the particular Spirits needed for a cure.

    The Early Britons painted themselves with the colours needed to stimulate their powess.

    The colour of the Spirit of Darkness was usally black, of Light, white; of water and vegetation,green; of air,blue, and of fire,red. There was always the one Great Spirit over all whose colour was Golden.

    In Egypt Horus was white, Osiris black, Shu red, Amen blue, and Num greed.

    The Egyptain Wisdom was brought to a high point under Ptah in the Temple of Memphis.

    Wise men and student travelled from all over the world to study with the Egyptian preisthood, whose famous pupils included Moses, Jesus and Pythagoras
    and many others, it is said

    The Egytains named, described, and drew man's seven bodies, and went fully into his activitys after death. They also understood the etheric, astral, mentel and spiritual planes, alos purgatory, paradise and successive heavens.

    In their renowned collection of pictures and writings called the Book of the Dead most of their beleifs are set forth. They considered each human being as living with one goal in view, that of his journey through the 'nether' world or astral planes, and his gradual progression through subtler planes to 'paradise' or the heaven world, helped by the various workers and repressentatives of the spiritual hierarchy.

    The greater part of the Egyptain consciousness was concentratrated upon the path of Attaiment and the evolution of mankind. By means of astonomy and astrology they mapped out a wonderful and stupendous panorama of the Plan of Evolution and the history of the world.

    They origianated the beleif in the Messiah, who they called the Ever-coming One.

    He was the Egyptain Jesus, called Iusa or Horus, and reborn every 2000 - 2500 years, or every time the earth passed into the next Sign of the Zodiac. During each of these great two thousand year periods. He embodied the quality, lesson and type of the sign.

    For instace, under the Sign Leo, Iusa or Horus was worshipped was worshipped as a young lion and it is probable that the Sphinx was raised in his honour. He was born as a Scarabaeus in Cancer 10-12,ooo years ago, in which Sign was also the crib or manger star, and that of the Ass. During that periodthe scarad was worshipped. During the Sign of Taurus the Bull. He was worshipped as the Golden Calf. During the Jewish Dispensation. He was reborn as the lamb in the sign of Aries the Ram. And finally in the Christian Era in the Sign of the Pisces the Fish He came as the Jesus Christ of the New Testament. The sign of the fish, which is still engaved upon the pope's seal ring; the Early Christians were known as the Pisciculi.

    The cross was used 7000 years ago in Egypt to represent the power that uphold the soul in death. The story of Jesus, of the Annuniation, the virgin birth (born in the month of september (virgo), of his baptism, temptaion (to saturn on the mount of saturn) teachings, miracles, disciples, the last supper and his resurrection (the sun rises again), had all existed and had been elaborated in Egypt for 10,000 years. (Ancient Egypt the light of the world by Gerald Massey)

    Apparently it was merely adapted by the writers of the New Testament and modelled onto the life of the new and great Messiah, with ceratin alterations which clouded some of the deepest meaning.

    (I will only touch on the that here)
    Last edited by Fizban "The Fabulous"; 05-20-2007 at 11:52 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Fayetnam NC

    Re: History Of The Wisdom

    Quote Originally Posted by Fizban "The Fabulous"
    Both the Bible and the history book, while being compiled for us, have passed through intensive censorships, besides suffering at the hands of unenlightened translators.

    the result is that our orthodox education, both in reeligion and history, is often mislead, and keeps us in complete ignorance of large and vital aspects of humanity's evolution.
    That's why while beliving in God, I have issues with most Christian denominations and churches. So few understand that the bible was compiled by humans and translated by humans. They did'nt put everything in it to begin with, and it's been translated God only knows many times. Given man's natural instinct to add and subtract to fit their own ideas, (writer's privladge if you will), human error in the translation; and the simple fact that by the time king James set to work on it, nobody really knew how to translate the old languge used by the original writers of the scriptures.
    There's no way everything in it is what was written by the apposals and prophates.

  3. #3
    Fizban "The Fabulous" Guest

    Re: History Of The Wisdom

    That's why while beliving in God, I have issues with most Christian denominations and churches. So few understand that the bible was compiled by humans and translated by humans. They did'nt put everything in it to begin with, and it's been translated God only knows many times. Given man's natural instinct to add and subtract to fit their own ideas, (writer's privladge if you will), human error in the translation; and the simple fact that by the time king James set to work on it, nobody really knew how to translate the old languge used by the original writers of the scriptures.
    There's no way everything in it is what was written by the apposals and prophates.
    Of course, the people who translated the King James bible where great on the kings english but where not that hot on Hebrew..

    So yep they made a few mistakes...5286 mistakes I think it was.
    They didnt understand much about Hebrew even as we do today.

    Another thing, why do they call the king james Bible the authorized version ?

    It becourse King James aurthorized its people to read only that version and you better not be caught reading any other version, only the authorzed one ! period.

    You got a problem with that !

    We catch you reading something we didnt authorize you to read its death. :mad:

    Theres alot to be said about the authorized version.


    Each of the great ancient religions has its Book of Records and Teachings, which were for the the outer ring of students. This book was always supplemented by Commentary written for the inner circle of the priesthood, explaining the secret symbolism of the Book and the Mysteries therein concealed. Sometimes there was a second and a third Commentrary giving the deepest inner meanings. These Keys or Commentaries were carefully guarded and hidden, and in many cases have apparently disappeared altogether.

    The ancient Indian philosophy began with the Veda, including the Upanished books and their great Commentraries, The rig and Yajur Vedes are some of the earliest records of the Aryan thought.

    They come between The Egyptain and the Greek civilizations, and are assigned to about 5000 B.C. the worshipped a Heavenly Father (Dyans-Pitar) and spirits controlling the elements. They had a very deep conception of the God-force.

    The Indian book of moral code, called the Laws of Manu, taught continence and moderation and striving for a spiritual 'second birth'. All ten of the Indian philosophies taught Reincarnation.

    Shamkara, born about A.D. 788, was the great Indian saint and elucidator, of the Upanishads. He wrote one of the wolrd's masterpieces, his commentry on the Brahman Sutras, the Upanishads, and his 'Song of the Lord' ( the 'Brabavad gita) He was a great adept in Yoga.

    yoga is not a religion. It is a science, a method of 'yoking' up with the 'suprem self', a practice of extrem discipline for the attainment of perfction. A Yogin is one who has studyed Yoga, often at the Buddhist university of Nalanda.

    the Buddah was the great Indian mystic, founder of Buddhism. The Buddhist philosophy is based on the law of Karma.
    The brahmins philosophy is based on the law of Karma. The Brahmins beleieved Buddah to be reincarnation of Vishnu, The ancient teacher, They absorbed his teachings, which also took hold of Tibet, china, and in Japen among the Zen monks.

    The Tibetans have a Book of the Dead containing the 'Bod', which is a guide-book to the dying during the forty-nine days which constitute the 'Intermediary stage' between death and union and the Divin. Passage from this book are read to the deceased for 49 days after his death, while he is supposed to be passing through the three lower astral planes and viewing the panorama of his created thought-forms.

    He is finally realizes the illusion and craves a new birth. He is exhorted to beleive in the One great Divinity of who he is part.

    In Persia a very fine philosophy was cultivated. this was the Sufi with it book the Avesta. This was bilt upon a very early worship of the sun god Mithra (jesus, Horus-RA where also sun gods) which at one time held great sway in Europe as well as upon the teachings of the prophet Zoroaster.

    The Rubaiyat of Omar Kkayyam is inspired by sufuusm. The Sufis find ecstasy through losing themselves in union with the divine spirit. Some of the akirs and Dervishes are offshoots, but these are sometimes degenerated.

    the Mohammedans possess a great wealth of philosophy in the book of the Koran, which also teaches an aspirition to unity with the One God.

    In China the religion, whether Buddhist or Taoist, is built upon the teachings of Confucius. Confucius was a very practical teacher and social organiser. Born in 551 BC he worked to develop social science and the bulding up of indivdual character, and did much to bind china together. He was almost a contemporary Buddah, and was greatly influenced at one time by Lao Tze. His pupils recorded his teachings in a book called The Digested Coonversations, a large part of which was burnt later during the Ts'in dynasty, with the usual onject of keeping people in ignorance.

    Confucius beleived in the one God force over all. and of three types of subsidiary spirits. He called himself the 'transmitter of the wisdom of the Ancients

    Lao Tze was the Chinese 'Jesus'. He was born of a Virgin (in virgo), conceived under a falling star. He was a high mystic and left a famous book called Tao Teh King, which expounded a moral code for the way of Attainment 'Tao' means Way and represents the aspiration of the Taoists. Lao Tze beleived in reincarnation, Karma and the victory of gentleness.

    The japanesse state religion was Shinto, Shinto means the way of spirit, Some of the Japanese became Buddhists, and nearly all of them become Confucians as well.

    Then there was a very stern type of Buddhism called Zen which gained great sway i China and was finally transplanted to the japen. The Zen classic is a poem called 'The Taming of the Bull', the bull being of course the animal nature or materialism. The Zen monks originated ju-jutsu, which has a deep scientific and mystical orgin, and was practiced by the famous samurai warriors.

    The Greek philosophies, founded by the Pythagoras, Plato and others, upon the Egyptain teachings, accepted rebirth and other ancient doctrines.

    the Jews have their own book of ancient records called the Kaballah (it orgins are Egyptain), and the inner meaning of these writting were sought and studied by the famous Alchemsit of the middle ages
    The Hebrews had their book called Genesis but this was a orginally a Egyptain book called the book of the dead or the Book of Genesis.

    GENESIS Really means the Genes of Isis or Generation of Isis. and is a book of the history and times of Atlantis.

    The Christian Church, as founded in Roe, guarded many priceless manuscripts. It accepted reincarnation and Karma, as it said that christ had also done (Matthew xvi,13 and matthew xvii, 12-13)

    But from the first General Councile of Christiandom at Nicaea in AD 325, to the last Council in Constantinople in AD 869, Christian principles, rules and teachings were subjected to many deletions and changes. The result was to decrease public knowledge for the aggrandizement of priesthood. From that time onwards all who posessed or were teaching the Secret Wisdom were mercilessly persecuted and put to death.

    Henceforth the occult science were studied in secret. They were guarded and kept alive by such people as the Freemasons, Rosiscrucians, Alchmists, Troubadours, Knights of the Grail and the Round table, and the Avengensies or paper-makers. Today all of these have fellen into corruption and evil.

    Russia therewere the Trottes, and in Britain there had been the Druids, Earlier still in Maxico, there were the remnants of the teaching of Quetzalcoatl, and of the ancient Atlantean settlements of Peru. In Chaldea there were the Magi or Magician, the famous astrologers who possessed the Egyptain Wisdom and knew of the time and the place of the Messiah should be born. And in Palestine itself the wise ones belonged to the sect called the Essenes, which had existed for 8000 years, and had the privilege of training Jesus.

    Everywhere in the world the self same Ancient Wisodm can be traced, until its widespread stampig out, corruption and persecution at the beginning of the dark ages from which we are emerging.

    And everywhere in the world at the present are the signs of the re-emergence of that Wisdom back into the light of day, not as the prerogative and secret of the priesthood, the elite or holy, but as the hard earned right of the whole of humanity. The tables have been indeed turned, and now we find much of the Wisdom outside the churches and temple instea of inside them.

    Humanity is taking its salvation into its own hands. That is because we are now coming into the great Aquarian Age under the Sign of the Zodiac Aquarius, which will last, as do all signs, for about 2000 years. During this time the 'waters of life' will be poured down on all mankind.
    And the astrological influences will bring a golden age to birth. Many believe that the Ever-Coming One will arrive again in His newest guise, which we may not know yet, maybe we are all to beome the Christ, maybe ? but great will the fulfilment be.

    But we must always remain grounded and balanced in the here and now. Keep clean our own inner temple and live our lives for today and focus on the now as that is where life and spirit is.

    May your inner light be your guide and may it inspire you to light the world to help your fellow man
    Last edited by Fizban "The Fabulous"; 05-20-2007 at 04:59 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Re: History Of The Wisdom

    The greater part of the Egyptain consciousness was concentratrated upon the path of Attaiment and the evolution of mankind. By means of astonomy and astrology they mapped out a wonderful and stupendous panorama of the Plan of Evolution and the history of the world.

    They origianated the beleif in the Messiah, who they called the Ever-coming One.

    He was the Egyptain Jesus, called Iusa or Horus, and reborn every 2000 - 2500 years, or every time the earth passed into the next Sign of the Zodiac. During each of these great two thousand year periods. He embodied the quality, lesson and type of the sign.

    Is Lucifer the ever coming one?

    Is Lucifer and Jesus one and the same?

    It is a widely held belief in secret orders that they are one and the same.

    There’s a passage in the Old Testament which is commonly used as Biblical “proof” of the character of Lucifer, the proud angel who rebelled against God and was thrown out of Heaven. It comes from Isaiah 14:12,

    How you have fallen from heaven,
    O morning star, son of the dawn!
    You have been cast down to the earth,
    you who once laid low the nations!

    Lucifer is sometimes translated as “light bringer” but also as “the morning star.” Cool, so Lucifer, right? Well, then what the hell is Jesus doing saying this in the New Testament Book of Revelation 22:16,

    I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.“

    What the…? Well, maybe it’s just a fluke. Sorry, check out 2 Peter 1:19,

    And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.

    So, what’s Jesus saying here… that he’s none other than Lucifer? That the reason he’s sent down to Earth is the same reason that Lucifer was cast out of Heaven? I’d be interested in seeing what kind of mental gymnastics literalist Christians use to get out of this trap, because it’s a doozy. Either we have Jesus admitting that he’s Lucifer… or something else which is equally damaging to literalist interpretations of the Bible: that the Bible was mistranslated and modified, and thus is not the perfect Revealed Word of God.

    The translation “error” is thought to have occured with St. Jerome’s translation of the Greek Old Testament into the Latin in the 4th century. His version is called the Vulgate. I’ll quote from another website that picks up the trail of this weird mystery:

    In the original Hebrew text, the fourteenth chapter of Isaiah is not about a fallen angel, but about a fallen Babylonian king, who during his lifetime had persecuted the children of Israel. It contains no mention of Satan, either by name or reference. […]

    Why Lucifer? In Roman astronomy, Lucifer was the name given to the morning star (the star we now know by another Roman name, Venus). The morning star appears in the heavens just before dawn, heralding the rising sun. The name derives from the Latin term lucem ferre, bringer, or bearer, of light.” In the Hebrew text the expression used to describe the Babylonian king before his death is Helal, son of Shahar, which can best be translated as “Day star, son of the Dawn.” The name evokes the golden glitter of a proud king’s dress and court (much as his personal splendor earned for King Louis XIV of France the appellation, “The Sun King”).

    Apparently though, Jerome didn’t make a mistake in his translation, because at the time, “Lucifer” was an appropriate term to use. An example can be found in the Roman poet Virgil (from here):

    “Let us hasten, when first the Morning Star appears,
    To the cool pastures, while the day is new, while the grass is dewy”

    The morning star all these people are referring to is actually Venus:

    Given the fact that the planet Venus/Lucifer is an inner planet, meaning that its orbit lies between the Sun and Earth, it can never rise high in the sky at night, from our Earthly point of view, since it is physically located closer to the Sun than our own planet. It can be seen in the morning sky for an hour or so before the Sun rises, and in the evening sky for an hour or so after the Sun sets, but never during the dark of midnight.

    The planet Venus/Lucifer is the third brightest object in the sky, with the Sun being first, and the Moon being next.

    It seems that Lucifer only became associated with Satan/the Devil over the centuries after Jerome, thanks to poets, and mythological traditions within the church. But that doesn’t quite explain the weird connection that is made here between Jesus and the Devil, does it? I don’t know that I quite have the answer for it, but I know a good place to look next to hone our question-asking process: the work of Rudolf Steiner. Rather than try and reinvent the wheel here, I’m going to grab some excellent stuff that Zac wrote on this subject not too long ago.

    Steiner considered the course of human evolution to be aimed at the realization of the Christ consciousness, which seeks the harmonious manifestation of all aspects of the human being in balance. Steiner’s thought is characterized by his belief in the correct differentiation of forces, as a precursor to a higher integration. His belief was that the Christ consciousness was opposed by a current of consciousness based on destruction, imbalance and conflict, which we may identify with the counter-initiation, and which Steiner referred to as Sorat, the Dragon. Steiner was clear that Sorat was not an antithetical element to the evolution of humanity, but a necessary counter weight, much as the Buddha considers suffering a precondition for enlightenment.

    Further, Steiner separated the Sorat-current into two arms, which symbolize two different kinds of consciousness, but both act as temptations away from the gnostic Christ force. Again, both are useful and even necessary to human growth, but allowed to run unchecked these forces are destructive.

    These two arms are ( you guessed it ) Lucifer and Ahriman.

    In simplest terms these two represent energy and matter respectively. Lucifer is the symbol of energy, dynamic motion, dissolution of boundaries, and in a larger context, light, transcendence, and immateriality, hence an association with spirituality and even morality that can be misleading.

    Ahriman is the symbol of matter, crystallization, formation of boundaries and limitations, solidification in all regions. Ahriman is the tendency for the animate to become inanimate, for motion to become stillness. Ahriman is thus identified with unconsciousness, materialism, and stasis. Because matter is ‘mute’ Ahriman can be considered to be the enemy of nonmaterial abstractions like morality and ethics.

    Neither one is inherently harmful. Without Lucifer there is no motion, only dead matter, and without Ahriman there is no form, only endlessly fluctuating colliding forces.

    Steiner makes an interesting point here, although we’re perhaps not so accustomed to thinking of Jesus in these terms. We’re more used to thinking of him along the lines of how he described Lucifer here, as sort of this spiritual opponent of the Devil, the Prince of Darkness. Steiner instead seems to see Jesus as an integration and transcending of both these impulses. This view of Lucifer definitely helps “shed some light on” the Luciferian strain of contemporary Satanism, which is often implicated by many conspiracy theorists in the form of Freemasonry and the Illuminati. Zac explains it a little better:

    […] these two forces act as twin temptations, always struggling to pull mankind away from the Gnostic/Christ current into some form of deviant synthesis of Lucifer/Ahriman that excludes the Christ consciousness as much as possible. In this way both fulfill their function as the arms of Sorat, the opponent of true human evolution. In Steiner’s own words each strives for a particular kind of deviant synthesis: Lucifer wishes us to become moral robots, cookie cutter children who await ascent into Lucifer’s world of light and beauty. While Ahriman wishes us to become free but amoral; rudderless ghost people in a dead world. Both overlook the deeper truth: that spirit is nondual, it transcends and incorporates both matter and energy, favoring neither.

    Whether or not you buy into any of that, this seems to be the esoteric origin of the debate, and it all goes back to a little mis/translation of the Word of God. Some people might claim it goes much deeper than that, but those who do would do well to start here in their search.

    more info here,

    Last edited by Paladine; 02-05-2008 at 12:26 AM.
    The internet is the last light of truth and hope...it is truly of the people, by the people and for the people. We must not let it be subverted for any purpose other than the truth. And that truth shall spread to every man woman and child across the globe. No longer will those in power carry the sole means to decide for us, yet we now shall have the power to decide to tune them out.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2005

    Re: History Of The Wisdom

    What the Devil? Prince of Darkness Is Misunderstood, Says UCLA Professor

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    He's not the enemy of God, his name really isn't Lucifer and he isn't even evil. And as far as leading Adam and Eve astray, that was a bad rap stemming from a case of mistaken identity.
    "There's little or no evidence in the Bible for most of the characteristics and deeds commonly attributed to Satan," insists a UCLA professor with four decades in what he describes as "the devil business."

    In "Satan: A Biography" (Cambridge Press), Henry Ansgar Kelly puts forth the most comprehensive case ever made for sympathy for the devil, arguing that the Bible actually provides a kinder, gentler version of the infamous antagonist than typically thought.

    "A strict reading of the Bible shows Satan to be less like Darth Vader and more and more like an overzealous prosecutor," said Kelly, a UCLA professor emeritus of English and the former director of the university's Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies. "He's not so much the proud and angry figure who turns away from God as [he is] a Joseph McCarthy or J. Edgar Hoover. Satan's basic intention is to uncover wrongdoing and treachery, however overzealous and unscrupulous the means. But he's still part of God's administration."

    The view runs in opposition to the beliefs held by many Christians and others about key religious concepts like original sin and the nature of good and evil.

    "If Satan isn't really in opposition to God and he isn't really evil, then that means the fight between good and evil isn't an authentic part of Christianity," Kelly said. "What I'm saying will be scandalous to some people."

    But what would you expect of someone's whose 72nd birthday fell this year on June 6 (06-06-06) and who felt disappointed when nothing momentous occurred that day? Actually, Kelly is no stranger to bubble-bursting. After digging deep into the history of Valentine's Day, he pronounced 20 years ago that he had not only uncovered the holiday's origins but that it should be celebrated in May, not February.

    Still, if Kelly could be considered scandalous, it's not because he doesn't know any better. Kelly started his academic career at a Jesuit seminary and was ordained in four of the seven holy orders on the way to the priesthood, including the order of exorcist.

    "It was at that time that I started my campaign to rehabilitate the devil — to deliver him from evil, as it were," Kelly said.

    "Satan: A Biography" is the culmination of more than 40 years of research into the devil and religious and cultural traditions that have grown up around him. The book is Kelly's third on the topic.

    When it comes to the Old Testament, Kelly insists that Satan's profile is considerably lower than commonly thought and significantly less menacing. By Kelly's count, Satan only appears three times in the 45 books that make up the pre-Christian scriptures, the best known being in the Book of Job. On each occasion, Satan is still firmly part of what Kelly calls "God's administration," and his activities are done at the behest of "the Big Guy." But his actions aren't evil so much as consistent with the translation of "devil" and "satan," which literally mean "adversary" in Greek and Hebrew, respectively.

    "His job is to test people's virtue and to report their failures," Kelly said.

    Perhaps most surprising is not the figure Satan cuts, but his notable absences in the Old Testament. In the Bible's first reference to Lucifer, for instance, Satan doesn't appear — even by implication, Kelly points out. "'Lucifer' is Latin for light-bearer," he said, and was the name given to the morning star, or the planet Venus. Originally written in ancient Hebrew, the passage, on face value, refers to the tyrannical Babylonian king who boasts of his conquests but who is "about to be cast to the ground." Kelly insists there's nothing more to the reference than an apt use of metaphor, but the third-century Christian philosopher Origen of Alexandria argued in his best known work, "On First Things," that the reference applied to Satan.

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    "Origen says, 'Lucifer is said to have fallen from Heaven,'" Kelly explained. "'This can't refer to a human being, so it must refer to Satan.' Subsequent church fathers found this reasoning persuasive, and so did everyone who followed them."

    Ironically, the only mentions of Lucifer in the New Testament — and there are three of them — refer to Jesus, Kelly said. "Jesus is called 'Lucifer' or 'the morning star' because he represents a new beginning."

    Another prominent omission in the Old Testament, Kelly said, can be found in Genesis. "Nobody in the Old Testament — or, for that matter, in the New Testament either — ever identifies the serpent of Eden with Satan," Kelly said. "The serpent is just the smartest animal, and he's motivated by envy after being jilted by Adam for Eve."

    Kelly traces the correlation of Satan and the serpent to not long after the New Testament was completed. In his "Dialogue With Trypho," the second-century Christian martyr Justin of Samaria first argued that Satan appeared as a serpent to tempt Adam and Eve to disobey God, according to Kelly.

    "This is what I call 'The New Biography,'" Kelly said. "It starts with Justin Martyr, who implicates Satan in the fall of Adam and Eve. By causing Adam and Eve to fall, Satan caused his own fall.

    "The second step in this new and phony biography comes with Origen, who said, 'No, Satan's first sin was not deceiving Adam and Eve or refusing to go along with God's plan of creating Adam in his own image,'" Kelly said. "'It was to sin out of pride like the morning star, like Lucifer in the passage from Isaiah.' Turning Satan into God's enemy is a two-step process."

    Meanwhile, in passages in Luke, Matthew, Corinthians and elsewhere in the New Testament, Satan continues to act as a tester, enforcer and prosecutor but not as God's enemy, Kelly points out.

    "Everyone else has said that by the time Satan gets to the New Testament, he is evil, he's an enemy of God, but that's not so," Kelly said. "The whole biblical picture of Satan is that of a bad cop to Yaweh's good cop in the Old Testament, and to Jesus' good cop in the New Testament. Throughout, Satan is someone who works for God."

    A scene in the New Testament's Book of Revelation is often cited today as evidence that Satan was the deceiver of Adam and Eve, but the interpretation stems from a fundamental misunderstanding, Kelly argues.

    "'That ancient serpent' refers to the giant sea serpent Leviathan, not the garden snake of Eden," he said. "In Revelation, Leviathan has morphed into a dragon, or large serpent, with the seven heads and 10 horns, which is still further removed from the seductive serpent who deceived Eve."

    In addition to linking Satan with the Garden of Eden, the passage from Revelation also has been used to prove that Satan fell early on in the Bible, but Kelly insists that is not accurate.

    "Satan's ouster from heaven in Revelation is explained as taking place in the future," Kelly said. "In Revelation 12:10, a voice says that 'the accuser of our brothers is cast out, overcome by the testimony of martyrs.' Since there were no martyrs until Christ died, that has to be in the future."

    Similarly, a passage in the Gospel of Luke, when Jesus reports having seen "Satan fall like lightning," has been misinterpreted, according to Kelly. "Jesus saw the fall in the past because he had the vision the day before he describes it to the apostles," Kelly said. "But Jesus is referring to a future fall [of Satan] from his position as God's attorney general."

    This is not to say, however, that Kelly contends that Satan is likeable.

    "Jesus doesn't like him, and Paul doesn't like him," Kelly explained. "He represents the old guard in the heavenly bureaucracy, and everyone longs for him to be disbarred as the chief accuser of humankind."

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