Sunday, 25 June 2017


This is an electrum stater from the ancient city of Kyzikos, Mysia, circa 550-500 BC. It has a chimera above a tuna fish which was the civic badge of Kyzikos. The reverse is a quadripartite incuse square, an abstract representation of swastika, the symbol of sun's fire. 

Chimera is a monster of which a brief description in Homer’s Iliad is the earliest surviving literary reference. Homer, who wrote during late 8th, early 7th century BC, depicts it as "a thing of immortal make, not human, lion-fronted and snake behind, a goat in the middle, and snorting out the breath of the terrible flame of bright fire". It was the offspring of Typhon (last son of Gaia, fathered by Tartarus)

This Etruscan (Rascian) bronze, dated to 400 BC, is known as "Chimera of Arezzo". 

You can find high resolution image here.

The sculpture has an inscription reading "Tinia" on its front right leg. Tinia (also Tin, Tinh, Tins or Tina) was the god of the sky and the highest god in Etruscan mythology, equivalent to the Roman Jupiter and the Greek Zeus.

Interestingly in Irish the word "tine" means "fire", and in Serbian the word "tinja" means "smoldering"...

What does this have to do with Chimera? Well Chimera "snorts out the breath of the terrible flame of bright fire". And she does it through the mouth of a lion. Now, as I already explained in my post "Two crosses",  the hottest part of the year in the northern Europe falls at the end of Summer and the Beginning of Autumn. In South Slavic tradition this period is called Kresovi meaning Fires. These are the days of wild fires and droughts. And interestingly this period is on the Zodiac circle represented by the symbol Leo, Lion. Lion which "snorts out the breath of the terrible flame of bright fire". 

Now in my last post "You will trample the great lion and the serpent" I talked about the solar symbolism hidden in Psalm 91 (Greek numbering: Psalm 90), also known as the Psalm of Protection, and the image known as "Christ treading on the beasts" which is based on this psalm. In this post I explained why snake is a symbol of the beginning of the summer and why lion is the symbol of the end of the summer. 

Summer starts on the 6th of May, Day of Jarilo, Beltine. Jarilo represents the sun's heat, symbolized by the snake and the dragon. Funnily Jarilo was Christianized into St George, the Dragon killer :) In Serbia, St Jeremija who is celebrated at the beginning of May is known as the Snake Saint. His day (1st of May according to the Julian calendar, 14th of May according to the Gregorian calendar) is the time when people perform magic ceremonies for protection from snakes...Interesting both names Jarilo and J(a)eremija have the root "jar" meaning "bright heat".

Summer ends on the 2nd of August, Day of Perun, Lughnasadh. Day of Perun falls in the middle of the Leo (Lion) zodiac sign

Knowing this it is easy to understand why Chimera has a snake tail and a fire breathing lion head. Summer starts in the sign of Snake and ends in the sign of Lion. The heat increases during this period until it turns into "terrible flame of bright fire". 

What is interesting is that in Serbian mythology the 2nd of August, the point on the solar circle which marks the end of Summer and the beginning of Autumn, the hottest part of the year, is also the day of Perun, the Slavic Thunder god. In Irish mythology this day is known as Lughnasadh, the day of Lugh, the Celtic thunder god. Why is the day of the thunder god in the middle of the hottest period of the year? Because right after the 2nd of August, the day of the maximum heat, the sun starts cooling down. The first Autumn thunderstorms arrive. Thunder god defeats the dragon. As I already explained in my post "Three suns", dragon is in Slavic mythology, with snake, symbol of sun's heat. The sun's heat which causes drought. The sun's heat that steals the "waters of heaven", rain. Once the Thunder god kills the dragon, once the sun's heat starts dissipating, the waters of heaven which the dragon stole are released, and the rains return...This is why the name of the sky god is inscribed on the Chimera's front right leg. 

But what about the goat's head that protrudes from the lion's back?

In my post "Goat" I talked about the symbolism of ibex goat and why is the Capricorn zodiac sign where it is on the solar circle. 

Now here is the important bit:

Alpine ibex mating season starts in December, and ends in January typically lasting around six weeks. 

Bezoar Ibex mating season starts in November and ends in January. 

Right in the middle of the mating periods of both Alpine and Bezoar ibex is Winter Solstice, 21st of December. And the day after the winter solstice is the beginning of the Capricorn (goat) period, which last from December 22 – January 20...

Have a look at this image. This is solar circle, with the beginning (snake), the middle (summer solstice) and the end (lion) of summer marked at the bottom of the Zodiac circle, and the middle of winter (winter solstice) marked at the top of the circle.

This is our Chimera. 

Chimera with the body with snake tail (beginning of summer), lion head (the end of summer) which all together represents summer. And with the ibex goat head on it's back, which represents the winter solstice.

And so it turns out that Chimera is not a monster, but a symbol of the sun. More precisely Chimera is the symbol of the solar yearly cycle. 

Interesting don't you think?

Friday, 23 June 2017

You will trample the great lion and the serpent

Have you ever heard of the Psalm 91 (Greek numbering: Psalm 90), also known as the Psalm of Protection?

The psalm starts with:

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty...

And goes on to proclaim:

...If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
and you make the Most High your dwelling... will trample the great lion and the serpent...

This last bit, the verse 13, interpreted as a reference to Christ defeating and triumphing over Satan, was the origin of the iconography of "Christ treading on the beasts", seen in the Late Antique period, and revived in Carolingian and Anglo-Saxon art. The earliest and one of the most beautiful example of the depiction of the "Christ treading on the beasts" scene can be found in the "Basilica of San Vitale" in Ravenna.

The "Basilica of San Vitale" in Ravenna, Italy is one of the most important examples of early Christian Byzantine art and architecture in Europe. The church was begun by Bishop Ecclesius in 526, when Ravenna was under the rule of the Ostrogoths and completed by the 27th Bishop of Ravenna, Maximian, in 547 preceding the Byzantine Exarchate of Ravenna. The church is famous for its mosaics.

What is the meaning of the above image? 

Christian doctrine says that Jesus is trampling on the lion and the snake because "these animals are symbol of the Devil". Hence he is trampling the Devil. But I believe that there is another, hidden meaning.  

In my post "Three suns" I talked about the symbolic link between Snakes and the light and heat of the sun. This link was clearly preserved in Slavic mythology. Snakes come out of hibernation just before the the Spring Equinox. Snakes go back to hibernation just after the Autumn Equinox. So snakes are out during the period between Spring and Autumn Equinoxes, during the brightest and hottest part of the year. Slavs believed that once out, snakes constantly "suck the heat out of the sun" and that this is why sun eventually looses it's light and heat and days get shorter and shorter and colder and colder. 

Right in the middle of this period is summer. 

Summer starts on the 6th of May, Day of Jarilo, Beltine. Jarilo represents the sun's heat, symbolized by the snake and the dragon. Funnily Jarilo was Christianized into St George, the Dragon killer :) In Serbia, St Jeremija who is celebrated at the beginning of May is known as the Snake Saint. His day (1st of May according to the Julian calendar, 14th of May according to the Gregorian calendar) is the time when people perform magic ceremonies for protection from snakes...Interesting both names Jarilo and J(a)eremija have the root "jar" meaning "bright heat".

Summer ends on the 2nd of August, Day of Perun, Lughnasadh. Day of Perun falls in the middle of the Leo (Lion) zodiac sign. 

So summer is the period between the Day of Jarilo (Snake) and the Day of Perun (Lion). And in the middle of the summer is Day of Svetovid, the Summer solstice. The point when Sun in the northern hemisphere reaches its highest point above the horizon. 

Now have a look at "Christ treading on the beasts" scene again: 

Christ standing with his legs spread, with one leg on the snake (the beginning of the summer) and the other leg on the lion (the end of the summer). His head, with the solar halo is right at the point of the summer solstice, when Sun god is the most high...

If you make the Most High your will trample the great lion and the serpent...

You will be in the summer on the northern hemisphere...

Is this the meaning of this psalm and this image? I believe so. What do you think?

Saturday, 17 June 2017

Sun, Thunder, Fire

Do you remember the riddle from the Book of Veles which I mentioned in my post "Triglav , Trojan, Trinity, Trimurti, Agni":

"Jer tajna je velika, kako to Svarog biva u isto vreme i Perun i Svetovid.

Translated into English this means: 

"Because it is a great secret how come Svarog (hevenly and earthly fire) is at the same time Perun (thunder and lightning) and Svetovid (Sun)."

The answer to this riddle is Triglav (three headed), Trojan (triple, trinity). 

Svetovid, Perun and Svarog are just three heads, three faces, three manifestations of the one and only god, Triglav.  

Now have a look at this:

This article in magazine "Nature" states that "Lightning is triggered by solar winds":

"Lightning has been around since the dawn of time, but what triggers it is still an enigma. Now, researchers propose that the answer could lie in solar particles that penetrate the atmosphere and ionize the air, releasing free electrons and leading to a massive discharge.

Thunderclouds become electrically charged from the collisions of microscopic ice particles in their midst, and from air currents that push the negative and positive charges apart. The air is a good insulator, keeping electrons from jumping back and equilibrating the electrostatic charges. But if a pathway of ionized air molecules forms that can act as a conductor between different parts of a cloud, or between the cloud and the ground, the result is a lightning bolt.

However scientists are still not sure of what initiates the formation of such a pathway. In the presence of strong enough electric fields, insulators spontaneously break down and become conductors, but experts believe that the atmosphere simply cannot reach the hundreds of thousands of volts or more required to produce a lightning. So they have been searching for alternative explanations. Researchers at the University of Reading, UK, now say that solar wind has a role.

As high-speed solar-wind particles travel through space, they can lead to localized strengthening of the magnetic field, which pushes some of the particles to even higher speeds. These so-called solar energetic particles (SEPs) — unlike other those that travel at slower speeds — have enough energy to penetrate Earth’s magnetic field and to travel through the atmosphere, down to the altitudes where thunderclouds form. There, researchers say, they could collide with atoms in the air, generating a cascade of high-energy particles. This ‘runaway breakdown’ would be sufficient to trigger lightning, says Christopher Scott, a space scientist who led the latest study."

Basically without solar winds there would be no lightning. 

And without lightning there would be no Earthly fire. At least before people "stole the secret of making fire from the sky god". Originally earthly fires were a product of lightning strikes during the periods of intense sun's heat. And as we see from the above "Nature" article, lightning is a direct product of solar winds which means that Sun creates Thunder and Lightning which creates Fire. 

And this is why Svetovid (Sun), Perun (Thunder and Lightning) and Svarog (fire) are One:Triglav (Three headed) one and only God.

Friday, 9 June 2017

Two equilibriums

Many years ago, my kung fu teacher tried to explain to me the difference between Yang (Fire) and Yin (Water) method in Taoism. 

Taoism teaches the way to achieve balance, equilibrium. There are two ways to achieve this balance, equilibrium: the fire method and the water method. 

People who practice the fire method, arrive to the point of balance, equilibrium, by pushing upwards and burning their ego. This way of achieving balance is fast, hard, dangerous, and the balance achieved is short lived.

People who practice the water way, arrive to the point of balance, equilibrium, by letting go of, dissolving their ego. This way of achieving balance is slow, soft, not dangerous, and the balance achieved is long lived. 

Interestingly, physics also teaches us that there are two types of equilibrium points. 

One is the point on top of the curve, the top of the hill. To reach this equilibrium point, we have to push upwards, work hard against gravity. Once we reach this point, even the smallest knock will push us off the equilibrium point, and we will tumble down into the state of unbalance. From there we have to push upwards again and work hard to reach the equilibrium point. 

The other is the point at the bottom of the curve, the bottom of the valley. To reach this equilibrium point, we have to make the initial small push "in the right direction" towards the edge of the curve. From there on we just have to let go and let the gravity do its work. We will roll down the curve and after a series of oscillations we will eventually settle in the equilibrium point at the bottom. Once  we reach this point, a knock, even a strong knock will push us off the equilibrium point, but only for a short period of time. After a series of smaller and smaller oscillations, we will naturally settle back into the equilibrium point.

I think this is quite interesting...

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

The woman with blue eyes

This is a bone figurine with lapis lazuli eyes, from Egypt, Early Predynastic period, Naqada I, 4000-3600 BCE.

The choice of material used for this figurine suggests that the artist specifically wanted to depict a white woman with blues eyes. But who would do such thing in Egypt 6000 years ago?

Well maybe the redhead people who lived in Egypt at that time. They buried their their dead in the sand, where their bodies were naturally mummified. The oldest known group of such mummies is known as Gebelein predynastic mummies. They date to approximately 3400 BC from the Late Predynastic period of Ancient Egypt. The first excavated body is on display in the British Museum. This body was originally nicknamed 'Ginger' due to his red hair...

The depictions of people with blue eyes as well as mummies with blond, red and brown straight and wavy (Caucasian) hair continue to be found through out the Ancient Egypt's history. 

What is going on here? 

Have a look at this map from Eupedia:

This map shows distribution of the the R1b haplogroup across the world. 

R1b is the most common haplogroup in Western Europe, reaching over 80% of the population in Ireland, the Scottish Highlands, western Wales, the Atlantic fringe of France, the Basque country and Catalonia. It is also common in Anatolia and around the Caucasus, in parts of Russia and in Central and South Asia.

Besides the Atlantic and North Sea coast of Europe, hotspots include the Po valley in north-central Italy (over 70%), Armenia (35%), the Bashkirs of the Urals region of Russia (50%), Turkmenistan (over 35%), the Hazara people of Afghanistan (35%), the Uyghurs of North-West China (20%) and the Newars of Nepal (11%). 

A small percentages (1 to 4%) of R1b-V88 is found in almost every country in  Africa north of the equator. Higher frequency in Egypt (5%) along the Nile, among Berbers from the Egypt-Libya border (23%), among the Sudanese Copts (15%), the Hausa people of Sudan (40%), the the Fulani people of the Sahel (54% in Niger and Cameroon), and Chadic tribes of northern Nigeria and northern Cameroon (especially among the Kirdi), where it is observed at a frequency ranging from 30% to 95% of men.

Is it possible that the people who made a statuette of a white woman with blue eyes in Egipt 6000 years ago, were themselves white people with blue eyes who belonged to the R1b haplogroup? 

I believe so. 

But how and when did these R1b people arrive to Africa? I recently found an interesting article about this on "Cradle of civilization" blog. The article is entitled "The origin and development of the African haplogroup R1b" and here is the important bit: 

Haplogroup R* originated in North Asia just before the Last Glacial Maximum (26,500-19,000 years ago). This haplogroup has been identified in the remains of a 24,000 year-old boy from the Altai region, in south-central Siberia. This individual belonged to a tribe of mammoth hunters that may have roamed across Siberia and parts of Europe during the Paleolithic.

Autosomally this Paleolithic population appears to have contributed mostly to the ancestry of modern Europeans and South Asians, the two regions where haplogroup R also happens to be the most common nowadays (R1b in Western Europe, R1a in Eastern Europe, Central and South Asia, and R2 in South Asia).

The oldest forms of R1b (M343, P25, L389) are found dispersed at very low frequencies from Western Europe to India, a vast region where the nomadic R1b hunter-gatherers could have roamed during the Ice Age. The three main branches of R1b1 (R1b1a, R1b1b, R1b1c) all seem to have stemmed from the Middle East.

The southern branch, R1b1c (V88), is found mostly in the Levant and Africa. The northern branch, R1b1a (P297), seems to have originated around the Caucasus, eastern Anatolia or northern Mesopotamia, then to have crossed over the Caucasus, from where they would have invaded Europe and Central Asia. R1b1b (M335) has only been found in Anatolia.

It has been hypothetised that R1b people (perhaps alongside neighbouring J2 tribes) were the first to domesticate cattle in northern Mesopotamia some 10,500 years ago. R1b tribes descended from mammoth hunters, and when mammoths went extinct, they started hunting other large game such as bisons and aurochs.

With the increase of the human population in the Fertile Crescent from the beginning of the Neolithic (starting 12,000 years ago), selective hunting and culling of herds started replacing indiscriminate killing of wild animals.

The increased involvement of humans in the life of aurochs, wild boars and goats led to their progressive taming. Cattle herders probably maintained a nomadic or semi-nomadic existence.

The analysis of bovine DNA has revealed that all the taurine cattle (Bos taurus) alive today descend from a population of only 80 aurochs. The earliest evidence of cattle domestication dates from circa 8,500 BCE in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic cultures in the Taurus Mountains.

The two oldest archaeological sites showing signs of cattle domestication are the villages of Çayönü Tepesi in southeastern Turkey and Dja’de el-Mughara in northern Iraq, two sites only 250 km away from each others. This is presumably the area from which R1b lineages started expanding – or in other words the “original homeland” of R1b.

The early R1b cattle herders would have split in at least three groups. One branch (M335) remained in Anatolia, but judging from its extreme rarity today wasn’t very successful, perhaps due to the heavy competition with other Neolithic populations in Anatolia, or to the scarcity of pastures in this mountainous environment.

A second branch migrated south to the Levant, where it became the V88 branch. Some of them searched for new lands south in Africa, first in Egypt, then colonising most of northern Africa, from the Mediterranean coast to the Sahel.

The third branch (P297), crossed the Caucasus into the vast Pontic-Caspian Steppe, which provided ideal grazing grounds for cattle. They split into two factions: R1b1a1 (M73), which went east along the Caspian Sea to Central Asia, and R1b1a2 (M269), which at first remained in the North Caucasus and the Pontic Steppe between the Dnieper and the Volga.

It is not yet clear whether M73 actually migrated across the Caucasus and reached Central Asia via Kazakhstan, or if it went south through Iran and Turkmenistan. In the latter case, M73 might not be an Indo-European branch of R1b, just like V88 and M335.

R1b-M269 (the most common form in Europe) is closely associated with the diffusion of Indo-European languages, as attested by its presence in all regions of the world where Indo-European languages were spoken in ancient times, from the Atlantic coast of Europe to the Indian subcontinent, which comprised almost all Europe (except Finland, Sardinia and Bosnia-Herzegovina), Anatolia, Armenia, European Russia, southern Siberia, many pockets around Central Asia (notably in Xinjiang, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan), without forgetting Iran, Pakistan, northern India and Nepal. The history of R1b and R1a are intricately connected to each others.

Like its northern counterpart (R1b-M269), R1b-V88 is associated with the domestication of cattle in northern Mesopotamia. Both branches of R1b probably split soon after cattle were domesticated, approximately 10,500 years ago (8,500 BCE). R1b-V88 migrated south towards the Levant and Egypt.

The migration of R1b people can be followed archaeologically through the presence of domesticated cattle, which appear in central Syria around 8,000-7,500 BCE (late Mureybet period), then in the Southern Levant and Egypt around 7,000-6,500 BCE (e.g. at Nabta Playa and Bir Kiseiba).

Cattle herders subsequently spread across most of northern and eastern Africa. The Sahara desert would have been more humid during the Neolithic Subpluvial period (c. 7250-3250 BCE), and would have been a vast savannah full of grass, an ideal environment for cattle herding.

Evidence of cow herding during the Neolithic has shown up at Uan Muhuggiag in central Libya around 5500 BCE, at the Capeletti Cave in northern Algeria and in Tassili n’Ajjer in southern Algeria  around 4500 BCE.

After reaching the Maghreb, R1b-V88 cattle herders could have crossed the Strait of Gibraltar to Iberia, probably accompanied by G2 farmers, J1 and T1a goat herders and native Maghreban E-M81 lineages. These Maghreban Neolithic farmers/herders could have been the ones who established the Almagra Pottery culture in Andalusia in the 6th millennium BCE.

R1b-V88 would have crossed the Sahara between 7,200 BCE and 3,600 BCE, and is most probably associated with the diffusion of Chadic languages, a branch of the Afroasiatic languages. R1b-V88 is not only present among Chadic speakers, but also among Senegambian speakers (Fula-Hausa) and Semitic speakers (Berbers, Arabs).

V88 would have migrated from Egypt to Sudan, then expanded along the Sahel until northern Cameroon and Nigeria. Another possibility is that R1b-V88 people migrated to central Africa straight down from central Sahara, escaping southward from the emerging desert. 

Today R1b-V88 is found among the native populations of Rwanda, South Africa, Namibia, Angola, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, Guinea-Bissau. The wide distribution of V88 in all parts of Africa, its incidence among herding tribes, and the coalescence age of the haplogroup all support a Neolithic dispersal. In any case, a later migration out of Egypt would be improbable since it would have brought haplogroups that came to Egypt during the Bronze Age, such as J1, J2, R1a or R1b-L23.

When the Sahara started turning into a desert, during the first part of the 4th millennium BC, people living in its eastern fringes started settling around the Nile valley. The concentration of large number of people in this relatively small area created the need for increasingly stronger organization in order to control and protect the access to limited resources. And the Egyptian culture was born...

Is it possible that the people who kick started this culture were R1b cattle herders? And that it was them who made the statuette of a white woman with blue eyes?

Interestingly only few days ago researchers from Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History had published a report which states that "Ancient Egyptians were more closely related to Europeans than modern Egyptians". 

The result was published after scientists managed, for the first time, to obtain full genome sequences of Ancient Egyptians. The mummies were taken from a single archaeological site on the River Nile, Abusir el-Meleq, which was inhabited from 3250 BC to 700AD and was home to a cult of Osiris, the god of the dead, making it a good place to be buried. 

A complete genome sequence was obtained for three mummies and mitochondrial DNA, which is passed through the female line, was obtained from 90 individuals. They were dated to between about 1,400BC and 400AD.

The researchers, writing in the journal Nature Communications, admitted their sample “may not be representative for all of ancient Egypt”. Nevertheless, they concluded the mummified people were “distinct from modern Egyptians, and closer towards Near Eastern and European samples”.

And they added: “We find that ancient Egyptians are most closely related to Neolithic and Bronze Age samples in the Levant, as well as to Neolithic Anatolian and modern and ancient European populations". 

In contrast to the changes between the ancient and modern period, the researchers, from Cambridge University and institutions in Germany, Poland and Australia, found the genetic make-up of the mummies was remarkably constant despite the arrival of the Romans and other foreign powers.

Dr Wolfgang Haak, group leader at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, said: “The genetics of the Abusir el-Meleq community did not undergo any major shifts during the 1,800-year timespan we studied, suggesting that the population remained genetically relatively unaffected by foreign conquest and rule.”

What do you think about all this?

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Minoan sacred marriage seal

This is a Minoan seal which is by archaeologist interpreted as a depiction of "hieros gamos" or the "sacred marriage".  

Hieros gamos ("holy marriage") is a sexual ritual that plays out a marriage between a god and a goddess, especially when enacted in a symbolic ritual where human participants represent the deities.

So who are the god and goddess depicted on this seal? And why are they depicted standing on top of a dog?

In my post "Ognjena Marija" I wrote about the holly marriage between Ognjena Marija (Fiery Mary) and St. Ilija Gromovnik (Elijah the thunderer). 

Ilija Gromovnik (Elijah the thunderer) is the Christianized Perun. But also he is the Christianized Helios, the old titan Sun God. 

In Slavic mythology, Ognjena Marija or the "Fiery Mary" is considered to be the sister of St Ilija Gromovnik and (or) wife of Perun. She is also known as Perunika.

Serbian folk tradition says that if it wasn't for Ognjena Marija, St Ilija Gromovnik, Perun, Thundering fiery sun would burn the whole world. 

The day on which St Eliah the thunderer is celebrated, the 2nd of August, used to be the known as Perun day. 

The period three days before and the three days after the 2nd of August, is in South Slavic tradition called Kresovi meaning Fires. This is the hottest part of the year in the northern hemisphere, the period of the burning heat. These are the dog days when the dog star Sirius is in the sky with the sun. 

In Serbian folk mythology, Ognjena Marija has been transformed into two female Christian characters: St Marina, known also as St Margaret and St Mary Magdalene.

If we look at the days on which people celebrate these two female saints, we can see that they mark the beginning and the end of Kresovi (the fire days):

30th of July. St Marina, St Margaret, Ognjena Marija
2nd of August. St Ilija the thunderer
4th of August. St Marija Magdalena, Blaga (kind, benign, mild, gentle) Marija

You can see that Serbian tradition Kresovi, the week of fire, starts with the fiery Marija and Ends with kind, benign, mild, gentle Marija. The 2nd of August, Perun day, the day of Ilios the thundering sun, is actually the hottest day of the year in the Balkans. All summer the sun has been burning in the sky. This is the time of wild fires and drought. Everyone is praying for the first big thunderstorms to arrive and save the land from being burnt to cinder. And this is what Ognjena Marija delivers. In Serbia there is a saying: "Od svetog Ilije sunce sve milije" which means "From St Ilija the sun starts getting kinder, milder, gentler". The first part of the 2nd of August is considered to be Summer and the second is considered to be Autumn. And this is what the transformation of Marija from Ognjena (Fiery) to Blaga (kind, benign, mild, gentle) represents, The end of summer and beginning of autumn.

Is this what the above Minoan seal represents?

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Bull and bird

Recently I came across these two interesting vases:

The Sub-Minoan (1150-1100 BC) vase from Crete decorated with a bull and a bird. 

The Mycenaean (1300 BC) vase from Enkomi, Cyprus, decorated with a bull and a bird

Apparently similar vases were also found in Jordan, but I couldn't find any pictures of them.

Now what do these images symbolize? Well it could be just bulls and a birds. They are often seen together. 

But Minoans considered both bulls and birds sacred and clearly attributed a symbolical meaning to both animals. This is a Minoan symbol, Larnax, 1300 bc. A bird (duck) sitting on labris which is positioned between the bull horns. 

So is there a deeper meaning to these images?

In my post entitled "Leto" I talked about the link between Slavic words "let" meaning "flight" and "leto" meaning "summer, year".

In short, the period between these two "let" (flights) of migratory birds, between their arrival and their departure, is "leto" (summer). This beginning of the new "summer" is the beginning of the new period of vegetative growth and abundance, the "important" part of the year. Which is why Serbian word for "summer" and "year" is the same: "leto"...

In Slavic mythology, Jarilo was the son of the supreme Slavic god of thunder, Perun, his lost, missing, tenth son, born during Velja Noć (Great Night), the pagan Slavic celebration of the New Year. We don't really know what the "Great Night" means, but I believe that this Great Night was originally the night before the beginning of winter which in the Irish calendar is marked by Samhain, the 31st of October, and in the Serbian calendar by St Mitar day (Mitrovdan) the 8th of November. I believe that this night was originally the night of the 5th of November, the mid point between the autumn equinox and winter solstice. 

I also believe that the expression Great Night was also an euphemism for Winter, the time of cold and death. Right in the middle of the winter is the night of the winter solstice, the longest night of the year, which is also the middle of the winter, the middle of the darkest part of the year. This is the night when new fires are rekindled, to symbolize rekindling of sun's fire, the birth of the new sun, new solar year. This new sun is Jarilo, whose name means the young one, but also the hot one.

However, on the same night when he was born, according to the Slavic tradition, Jarilo was stolen from his father and taken to the world of the dead, where he was adopted and raised by Veles, Perun's enemy, Slavic god of the underworld and cattle. The Slavs believed the underworld to be an ever-green world of eternal spring and wet, grassy plains, where Jarilo grew up guarding the cattle of his stepfather. In the mythical geography of ancient Slavs, the land of the dead was assumed to lie across the sea, where migrating birds would fly every winter. This land of the dead was by Slavs known as Iriy, Irij or Vyriy (Russian: ирий, ирей, вырий). And when do the migrating birds leave the land of the living? By the beginning of the winter, which is marked by Samhain (Mitrovdan).

With the advent of spring, Jarilo returned from the underworld, bringing spring and fertility to the land. Spring festivals, actually more precisely summer festivals of Jurjevo/Jarilo, St Georges day,  that survived in the Slavic folklore celebrate Jarilo's return, the return of the summer heat. This is also the time when in Irish folklore we find Beltane, the day of bonfires, which also celebrates the return of the summer heat...

And when does Jarilo return from the land of the dead? When the migratory birds return from Irij, the land of the dead, where they spend winter, the period between Samhain (Mitrovdan) and Beltane (Jarilo day, Djurdjevdan)...

You can read more about the old Celtic and Serbian calendar in my post "Two crosses". 

Now Beltane (Jarilo day, Djurdjevdan), the day when Jarilo returns from the land of the dead, the beginning of Summer, is celebrated on the 6th of May. This date, falls in the middle of the Taurus (Bull) zodiac sign (21 April – 21 May), which marks the beginning of the calving period of the Eurasian wild cattle

So the arrival of migratory birds is immediately followed by the beginning of summer, which falls in the middle of Taurus (Bull) zodiac sign...

Is this what is symbolically depicted on the above two vases? 6th of May, Beltane, (Jarilo day, Djurdjevdan), the beginning of summer? I think so. 

What do you think?

Monday, 22 May 2017

He must increase and I must decrease

In John's Testimony about Jesus, St John the baptist says this about Jesus:

"He must increase and I must decrease."

What does this statement mean?

John the Baptist was an itinerant preacher in the early first century AD. Most scholars agree that John baptized Jesus. Scholars generally believe Jesus was a follower or disciple of John and several New Testament accounts report that some of Jesus' early followers had previously been followers of John. Some scholars maintain that John was influenced by the semi-ascetic Essenes...

But the connection between John the Baptist and Jesus is much much deeper: They were cousins born exactly six months apart. 

At the Annunciation, when the angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary to inform her that she would conceive of the Holy Ghost, he also informed her that Elizabeth, her cousin, was already six months pregnant with John the Baptist (Luke 1:36). 

Considering that Jesus was born on Christmas day, the 25th of December, John the Baptist, who was conceived six months earlier was born six months earlier, on the 24th of June, which is celebrated as the Nativity of John the Baptist. 

The Nativity of John the Baptist is one of the oldest festivals of the Christian church, being listed as a principal festival in 506 when it was celebrated in the same way as the Nativity of Jesus: it was a day of rest and was celebrated with three Masses: a vigil, at dawn, and at midday.

Now Christ was born on the 25th of December. At the time of the birth of Jesus, 25th of December was known as Brumalia. Brumalia was an ancient Roman, winter solstice festival. The name Brumalia comes from "brvma", [ˈbruːma] meaning "Winter solstice".

Brumalia was always celebrated on VIII Kal. Ian. (Servius A. 7.720). The eighth day before the Kalends of January was always December 25th in the Julian calendar, because December always had 31 days.

John the Baptist, being born exactly six months earlier, was born on the 24th of June. If at the time of the birth of Jesus, 25th of December was the winter solstice day, 24th of June, the date exactly six months away must have been the day of the summer solstice. So John the Baptist was born on the day of the summer solstice. 

So Christ was born on the day of the Winter solstice, the shortest day, after which days start getting longer. And John the Baptist was born on the day of the Summer solstice, the longest day, after which days start getting shorter. 

And so finally here is my proposed explanation for John's statement about Jesus: "He must increase and I must decrease". It is the light of the sun, the duration of the day that increases from winter solstice (birth of Jesus) to summer solstice, and decreases from summer solstice (birth of John the baptist) to winter solstice. 

Is this solar symbolism a coincidence?

Saturday, 18 March 2017

David Gorodok-Turov style

I love this picture. Traditional head dress from Belarus. 

This head dress, belongs to the so called "David Gorodok-Turov" style - a complex of traditional Belarusian folk costumes of the Polesye. 

The area where we find this style of traditional folk dress lies along the  Pripyat River, which flows east through Ukraine, then through Belarus parallel to Ukraine border, and then Ukraine again, draining into the Dnieper.

Along the river lie the Pinsk Marshes, a vast natural region of wetlands along the forested basin of the Pripyat River and its tributaries from Brest to the west to Mogilev to the northeast and Kiev to the southeast. It is one of the largest wetland areas of Europe.

Now here is something very very interesting indeed. My friend Sima Kosminski sent me a link to this article, which contains an interview with a couple from Lelikov near Kobrin in Polesye. 

They are Peter and Anastasia Shapetsyuki - known collectors of local folklore. 

Like other people in Polesye,  who wear this "David Gorodok-Turov" style of traditional folk costume, they apparently speak their own unique dialect which is different from the dialects of the neighboring population. And they have a very interesting legend that explains why their language is different:

"Serb tribes were great enemies of the Romans. Finally a Roman emperor got really angry and sent an army to attack them. The Serbs were driven out of their homeland and came and settled down here, in the Pinsk Marshes, in Polesye..."

Now what Serbs and what Romans is this legend talking about? Balkan Serbs and Romans? Or Baltic Sorbs and Holy Roman Empire? Both groups of Serbian tribes were indeed great enemies of their "Romans" and waged centuries long wars against invading "Romans". So both are very good candidates to be "the Serbs" from the legend. 

What is interesting, judging by this map from Eupedia, it seems that genetically Polesyans are definitively linked to Balkan Serbs:

What do you think?

This is a very very interesting development, don't you think so?

Does anyone have any additional information about this legend or about Polesye culture and language?

Thursday, 16 March 2017

St Patrick and snakes

Patrick banishes all snakes from Ireland

The absence of snakes in Ireland gave rise to the legend that they had all been banished by St. Patrick, He chased them into the sea after they attacked him during a 40-day fast he was undertaking on top of Mt Croagh Patrick.

The problem is all evidence suggests that post-glacial Ireland never had snakes. So maybe the snakes that Patrick expelled were not real terrestrial snakes but symbolic celestial snakes?

In my post "Fulacht fiadh - salt extraction facility?" I talked about the climate change patterns in Ireland over last 5,000 years and how they could have affected people's ability to extract salt from sea water. 

The Greenland Ice Cores provide a temperature record for the last 5,000 years. Clearly manifest are three temperature peaks which correspond with the archaeologically and historically documented Warm Periods in the North Atlantic region: Minoan Warm Period 1450–1300 BC, a Roman Warm Period 250 BC – 0 AD, the Medieval Warm Period 800–1100 AD. On the chart you can also clearly see the well documented extreme cold period known as the little Ice Age 1350 to 1850 AD.

"The Bronze Age Optimum" starts with the sudden sharp rise in temperature during the Minoan Warm Period which started right about 1500 BC. How warm was Atlantic northern Europe during the Minoan Warm Period can be discerned from the fact that during the Minoan warm period, millet was grown in southern Scandinavia. Today Millet is grown in tropical and subtropical regions, it is an important crop in Asia, Africa and in the southern U.S.. The average annual temperature in Mississippi and Alabama where millet is grown today is about 10 degrees, which should be compared with today's average annual temperature in Denmark, which is 8 degrees.

The temperature after the Minoan Warm Period drops and has another minimum around 1200 BC rising to another maximum around 1000 BC. After that it oscillates around relatively stable low value until it suddenly starts to rise around 250 BC. This is the beginning of the Roman Warm Period

The Roman warm period started quite suddenly around 250 BC. Some studies in a bog in Penido Vello in Spain have shown that in Roman times it was around 2-2.5 degrees warmer than in the present. The Roman warm period is amply documented by numerous analyses of sediments, tree rings, ice cores and pollen – especially from the northern hemisphere. Studies from China, North America, Venezuela, South Africa, Iceland, Greenland and the Sargasso Sea have all demonstrated the Roman Warm Period. Additionally, it has been documented by ancient authors and historical events.

How warm was Northern Europe during the Roman Warm Period can be seen by the fact that during the culmination of the Roman warm period olive trees grew in the Rhine Valley in Germany. Citrus trees and grapes were cultivated in England as far north as near Hadrian’s Wall near Newcastle.

The temperature then has a sudden drop during the first century AD but it then rises as suddenly and stays stable high until the end of the fourth century AD when it suddenly drops during the first half of the fifth century to an extreme low level. 

The dates of St Patrick's life are uncertain. His own writings provide no evidence for any dating more precise than the 5th century generally. The Irish annals for the fifth century date Patrick's arrival in Ireland at 432 AD. His sermon on the Mt Croagh Patrick, during which he banished snakes from Ireland must have happened soon afterwords...

St Patrick's arrival to Ireland coincides with the beginning of the sudden huge drop in average temperature, which during his life fell to the level comparable to the temperature during the so called "Little ice age". 

So Patrick arrives to Ireland. He defeats the old Sun God Crom Dubh, whose holy mountain was the same Mt Croagh Patrick from which Patrick drove snakes into the sea. He converts people to Christianity. And at the same time during the destruction of the old religion based on sun worship, the sun "dies". The heat of the sun disappears. 

In my post "Three suns" I talked about the symbolic link between Snakes and Dragons and the heat of the sun. This link was clearly preserved in Slavic mythology. Snakes come out during the hottest part of the year and thus symbolize the summer. Slavs believed that snakes "suck the heat out of the sun" and that this is why summer sun eventually looses it's heat and autumn and winter arrive. The dragon is actually the symbol of the summer sun's extreme heat, destructive heat which brings drought.  

Symbolically with the disappearance of the sun's heat, the snakes and dragons, the symbols of sun's summer heat, disappeared too. 

The belief that snakes and dragons were driven out of Ireland by Patrick, could be remnant of the blame that the Sun worshiping Pre-Christian Irish put on Patrick and his Christianization efforts for the sudden (and probably catastrophic) climate change. Basically they blamed Patrick for driving the summer out of Ireland.

On the other hand, it is actually quite possible that Patrick's owes his success in converting Ireland to Christianity to this sudden (and probably catastrophic) change of climate. To worshipers of the Sun God Crom Dubh, it must have looked like their god has abandoned them. So they turned to Christ, the "savior"...