The Mandaeans of southern Iraq are the only remaining Gnostic sect from ancient times. They began their history on Sri Lanka when the island was part of the land-mass of Lemuria and home of the primeval Goddess Culture. Eventually migrating west they became part of the Sumerian, Persian, Egyptian and Jewish Essene civilizations. Finally, retracing their steps, they returned to their present location. In the tradition of the ancient gnostic sects descended from the Goddess and the Left Hand Path, the Mandaeans are dedicated to the achievement of gnosis for all their people, which they know involves the balance and union of the polarity and the alchemical force that results from that union.
To engender the balance and union of the polarity in their culture, the Mandaeans provide equal rights for both men and women. They are governed by their priest/priestess class, which is composed of both men and women. The centerpiece of their religion is the rite of baptism which is observed daily, during which is invoked the presence of the ancient Dragon Enki, the embodiment of the alchemical Kundalini, under his contemporary name of Manda d’Hiya. Enki is the “Water of Life,” the subtle alchemical force that moves within the physical water of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers. When activated it purifies Mandaeans on all levels and can awaken their “inner Enki,” the Kundalini power at the base of the spine.
The daily baptismal immersion of a Mandaean, known as the “Rishama,” a prayer is repeated while each part of the body is sequentially cleansed. At the end of the rite, the power and wisdom of ancient Enki as Manda d’Hiya is invoked with the words: “The name of the Life [the Divine Power] and the name of Manda d’Hiya [the Divine Wisdom] are pronounced upon me.”
The most powerful of baptisms are observed on Sunday under the guidance of a Mandaean priest and incorporate much more ritual than the Rishama. They include the sacraments of oil, bread, and water, and end with the sacred kiss upon the head from a priest, a rite known as “giving Kushta.” Possibly the most valuable part of the ceremony for a person’s spiritual progress is a special transmission of energy given them by the priest or preistess, who after the water immersion transmits the Water of Life or Kundalini power into a baptized Mandaean by placing their right hand upon his or her head and calling forth Manda d’Hiya.
At the conclusion of their life, all Mandaeans rise up to Mshunia Kushta, an etheric dimension where they merge with their etheric-body double that has been waiting for them during their earthly sojourn. When asked the location of this etheric world, the priests give the description of an etheric world that apparently overlays the planet Venus and mimics the Earth when it was the Garden of Eden. One Mandaean priest has stated: “There is a star inhabited by men, the descendants of the Hidden Adam [the etheric double of Adam], but they are semi-spiritual in nature, and not gross like ourselves. This star is called Merikh, the star of the morning.” The Mandaean baptismal purifications continue on this “star” until each Mandaean is ready to shed his or her etheric forms and live exclusively in their most refined bodies of light as pure luminaries of gnosis. They are then eligible to return home through the Pleiades stargate to the highest Pleroma worlds of light.
From Mark Amaru Pinkham – Author : THE GNOSTIC CIVILIZATION OF THE MANDAEANS (Excerpted from World Gnosis: Coming Gnostic Civilization)
PHOTO: A Mandean baptism in the Tigris River, May 2003. Credit : Oleg Nikishin/Getty Images
“Return to india. I have waited for you patiently for fifteen years. Soon I shall swim out of the body and on to the Shining Abode. Yogananda, come!”
Sri Yukteswar’s voice sounded startlingly in my inner ear as I sat in meditation at my Mt. Washington headquarters. Traversing ten thousand miles in the twinkling of an eye, his message penetrated my being like a flash of lightning.
Fifteen years! Yes, I realized, now it is 1935; I have spent fifteen years in spreading my guru’s teachings in America. Now he recalls me.
That afternoon I recounted my experience to a visiting disciple. His spiritual development under Kriya Yoga was so remarkable that I often called him “saint,” remembering Babaji’s prophecy that America too would produce men and women of divine realization through the ancient yogic path.
This disciple and a number of others generously insisted on making a donation for my travels. The financial problem thus solved, I made arrangements to sail, via Europe, for India. Busy weeks of preparations at Mount Washington! In March, 1935 I had the Self- Realization Fellowship chartered under the laws of the State of California as a non-profit corporation. To this educational institution go all public donations as well as the revenue from the sale of my books, magazine, written courses, class tuition, and every other source of income.
“I shall be back,” I told my students. “Never shall I forget America.”
At a farewell banquet given to me in Los Angeles by loving friends, I looked long at their faces and thought gratefully, “Lord, he who remembers Thee as the Sole Giver will never lack the sweetness of friendship among mortals.”
I sailed from New York on June 9, 1935 in the Europa. Two students accompanied me: my secretary, Mr. C. Richard Wright, and an elderly lady from Cincinnati, Miss Ettie Bletch. We enjoyed the days of ocean peace, a welcome contrast to the past hurried weeks. Our period of leisure was short-lived; the speed of modern boats has some regrettable features!
THERESE NEUMANNTHERESE NEUMANN
Famous Catholic Stigmatist who inspired my 1935 pilgrimage to Konnersreuth, Bavaria Like any other group of inquisitive tourists, we walked around the huge and ancient city of London.
The following day I was invited to address a large meeting in Caxton Hall, at which I was introduced to the London audience by Sir Francis Younghusband. Our party spent a pleasant day as guests of Sir Harry Lauder at his estate in Scotland. We soon crossed the English Channel to the continent, for I wanted to make a special pilgrimage to Bavaria.
This would be my only chance, I felt, to visit the great Catholic mystic, Therese Neumann of Konnersreuth.
Years earlier I had read an amazing account of Therese. Information given in the article was as follows:
(1) Therese, born in 1898, had been injured in an accident at the age of twenty; she became blind and paralyzed.
(2) She miraculously regained her sight in 1923 through prayers to St. Teresa, “The Little Flower.” Later Therese Neumann’s limbs were instantaneously healed.
(3) From 1923 onward, Therese has abstained completely from food and drink, except for the daily swallowing of one small consecrated wafer.
(4) The stigmata, or sacred wounds of Christ, appeared in 1926 on Therese’s head, breast, hands, and feet. On Friday of every week thereafter, she has passed through the Passion of Christ, suffering in her own body all his historic agonies.
(5) Knowing ordinarily only the simple German of her village, during her Friday trances Therese utters phrases which scholars have identified as ancient Aramaic. At appropriate times in her vision, she speaks Hebrew or Greek.
(6) By ecclesiastical permission, Therese has several times been under close scientific observation. Dr. Fritz Gerlick, editor of a Protestant German newspaper, went to Konnersreuth to “expose the Catholic fraud,” but ended up by reverently writing her biography.
As always, whether in East or West, I was eager to meet a saint. I rejoiced as our little party entered, on July 16th, the quaint village of Konnersreuth. The Bavarian peasants exhibited lively interest in our Ford automobile (brought with us from America) and its assorted group-an American young man, an elderly lady, and an olive-hued Oriental with long hair tucked under his coat collar.
Therese’s little cottage, clean and neat, with geraniums blooming by a primitive well, was alas! silently closed. The neighbors, and even the village postman who passed by, could give us no information. Rain began to fall; my companions suggested that we leave.
“No,” I said stubbornly, “I will stay here until I find some clue leading to Therese.”
Two hours later we were still sitting in our car amidst the dismal rain. “Lord,” I sighed complainingly, “why didst Thou lead me here if she has disappeared?”
An English-speaking man halted beside us, politely offering his aid.
“I don’t know for certain where Therese is,” he said, “but she often visits at the home of Professor Wurz, a seminary master of Eichstatt, eighty miles from here.”
The following morning our party motored to the quiet village of Eichstatt, narrowly lined with cobblestoned streets. Dr. Wurz greeted us cordially at his home; “Yes, Therese is here.” He sent her word of the visitors. A messenger soon appeared with her reply.
“Though the bishop has asked me to see no one without his permission, I will receive the man of God from India.”
Deeply touched at these words, I followed Dr. Wurz upstairs to the sitting room. Therese entered immediately, radiating an aura of peace and joy.
She wore a black gown and spotless white head dress. Although her age was thirty-seven at this time, she seemed much younger, possessing indeed a childlike freshness and charm. Healthy, well- formed, rosy-cheeked, and cheerful, this is the saint that does not eat!
Therese greeted me with a very gentle handshaking. We both beamed in silent communion, each knowing the other to be a lover of God.
Dr. Wurz kindly offered to serve as interpreter. As we seated ourselves, I noticed that Therese was glancing at me with naive curiosity; evidently Hindus had been rare in Bavaria.
“Don’t you eat anything?” I wanted to hear the answer from her own lips.
“No, except a consecrated rice-flour wafer, once every morning at six o’clock.”
“How large is the wafer?”
“It is paper-thin, the size of a small coin.” She added, “I take it for sacramental reasons; if it is unconsecrated, I am unable to swallow it.”
“Certainly you could not have lived on that, for twelve whole years?”
“I live by God’s light.” How simple her reply, how Einsteinian!
“I see you realize that energy flows to your body from the ether, sun, and air.”
A swift smile broke over her face. “I am so happy to know you understand how I live.”
“Your sacred life is a daily demonstration of the truth uttered by Christ: ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.'”
Again she showed joy at my explanation. “It is indeed so. One of the reasons I am here on earth today is to prove that man can live by God’s invisible light, and not by food only.”
“Can you teach others how to live without food?” She appeared a trifle shocked. “I cannot do that; God does not wish it.”
As my gaze fell on her strong, graceful hands, Therese showed me a little, square, freshly healed wound on each of her palms. On the back of each hand, she pointed out a smaller, crescent-shaped wound, freshly healed. Each wound went straight through the hand. The sight brought to my mind distinct recollection of the large square iron nails with crescent-tipped ends, still used in the Orient, but which I do not recall having seen in the West.
The saint told me something of her weekly trances. “As a helpless onlooker, I observe the whole Passion of Christ.” Each week, from Thursday midnight until Friday afternoon at one o’clock, her wounds open and bleed; she loses ten pounds of her ordinary 121-pound weight. Suffering intensely in her sympathetic love, Therese yet looks forward joyously to these weekly visions of her Lord.
I realized at once that her strange life is intended by God to reassure all Christians of the historical authenticity of Jesus’ life and crucifixion as recorded in the New Testament, and to dramatically display the ever-living bond between the Galilean Master and his devotees.
Professor Wurz related some of his experiences with the saint.
“Several of us, including Therese, often travel for days on sight- seeing trips throughout Germany,” he told me. “It is a striking contrast-while we have three meals a day, Therese eats nothing. She remains as fresh as a rose, untouched by the fatigue which the trips cause us. As we grow hungry and hunt for wayside inns, she laughs merrily.”
The professor added some interesting physiological details: “Because Therese takes no food, her stomach has shrunk. She has no excretions, but her perspiration glands function; her skin is always soft and firm.”
At the time of parting, I expressed to Therese my desire to be present at her trance.
“Yes, please come to Konnersreuth next Friday,” she said graciously. “The bishop will give you a permit. I am very happy you sought me out in Eichstatt.”
Therese shook hands gently, many times, and walked with our party to the gate. Mr. Wright turned on the automobile radio; the saint examined it with little enthusiastic chuckles. Such a large crowd of youngsters gathered that Therese retreated into the house. We saw her at a window, where she peered at us, childlike, waving her hand.
From a conversation the next day with two of Therese’s brothers, very kind and amiable, we learned that the saint sleeps only one or two hours at night. In spite of the many wounds in her body, she is active and full of energy. She loves birds, looks after an aquarium of fish, and works often in her garden. Her correspondence is large; Catholic devotees write her for prayers and healing blessings. Many seekers have been cured through her of serious diseases.
Her brother Ferdinand, about twenty-three, explained that Therese has the power, through prayer, of working out on her own body the ailments of others. The saint’s abstinence from food dates from a time when she prayed that the throat disease of a young man of her parish, then preparing to enter holy orders, be transferred to her own throat.
On Thursday afternoon our party drove to the home of the bishop, who looked at my flowing locks with some surprise. He readily wrote out the necessary permit. There was no fee; the rule made by the Church is simply to protect Therese from the onrush of casual tourists, who in previous years had flocked on Fridays by the thousands.
We arrived Friday morning about nine-thirty in Konnersreuth. I noticed that Therese’s little cottage possesses a special glass-roofed section to afford her plenty of light. We were glad to see the doors no longer closed, but wide-open in hospitable cheer. There was a line of about twenty visitors, armed with their permits. Many had come from great distances to view the mystic trance.
Therese had passed my first test at the professor’s house by her intuitive knowledge that I wanted to see her for spiritual reasons, and not just to satisfy a passing curiosity.
My second test was connected with the fact that, just before I went upstairs to her room, I put myself into a yogic trance state in order to be one with her in telepathic and televisic rapport. I entered her chamber, filled with visitors; she was lying in a white robe on the bed. With Mr. Wright following closely behind me, I halted just inside the threshold, awestruck at a strange and most frightful spectacle.
Blood flowed thinly and continuously in an inch-wide stream from Therese’s lower eyelids. Her gaze was focused upward on the spiritual eye within the central forehead. The cloth wrapped around her head was drenched in blood from the stigmata wounds of the crown of thorns. The white garment was redly splotched over her heart from the wound in her side at the spot where Christ’s body, long ages ago, had suffered the final indignity of the soldier’s spear-thrust.
Therese’s hands were extended in a gesture maternal, pleading; her face wore an expression both tortured and divine. She appeared thinner, changed in many subtle as well as outward ways. Murmuring words in a foreign tongue, she spoke with slightly quivering lips to persons visible before her inner sight.
As I was in attunement with her, I began to see the scenes of her vision. She was watching Jesus as he carried the cross amidst the jeering multitude.
Suddenly she lifted her head in consternation: the Lord had fallen under the cruel weight. The vision disappeared. In the exhaustion of fervid pity, Therese sank heavily against her pillow.
At this moment I heard a loud thud behind me. Turning my head for a second, I saw two men carrying out a prostrate body. But because I was coming out of the deep superconscious state, I did not immediately recognize the fallen person. Again I fixed my eyes on Therese’s face, deathly pale under the rivulets of blood, but now calm, radiating purity and holiness. I glanced behind me later and saw Mr. Wright standing with his hand against his cheek, from which blood was trickling.
“Dick,” I inquired anxiously, “were you the one who fell?”
“Yes, I fainted at the terrifying spectacle.” “Well,” I said consolingly, “you are brave to return and look upon the sight again.”
Remembering the patiently waiting line of pilgrims, Mr. Wright and I silently bade farewell to Therese and left her sacred presence.
The following day our little group motored south, thankful that we were not dependent on trains, but could stop the Ford wherever we chose throughout the countryside. We enjoyed every minute of a tour through Germany, Holland, France, and the Swiss Alps. In Italy we made a special trip to Assisi to honor the apostle of humility, St. Francis. The European tour ended in Greece, where we viewed the Athenian temples, and saw the prison in which the gentle Socrates had drunk his death potion.
One is filled with admiration for the artistry with which the Greeks have everywhere wrought their very fancies in alabaster.
We took ship over the sunny Mediterranean, disembarking at Palestine. Wandering day after day over the Holy Land, I was more than ever convinced of the value of pilgrimage. The spirit of Christ is all- pervasive in Palestine; I walked reverently by his side at Bethlehem, Gethsemane, Calvary, the holy Mount of Olives, and by the River Jordan and the Sea of Galilee.
Our little party visited the Birth Manger, Joseph’s carpenter shop, the tomb of Lazarus, the house of Martha and Mary, the hall of the Last Supper. Antiquity unfolded; scene by scene, I saw the divine drama that Christ once played for the ages.
On to Egypt, with its modern Cairo and ancient pyramids. Then a boat down the narrow Red Sea, over the vasty Arabian Sea; lo, India.
According to accounts from his life, he preached the importance of “realization of the self” and criticized “love towards perishable things”. His teachings concentrate on a moral code of love, forgiveness, helping others, charity, contentment, inner peace and devotion to the God and guru. He stressed the importance of surrender to the true Satguru, who, having trod the path to divine consciousness, will lead the disciple through the jungle of spiritual training.
Sai Baba also condemned distinction based on religion or caste. It remains unclear if he was a Muslim or a Hindu. This, however, was of no consequence to Sai Baba. His teachings combined elements of Hinduism and Islam: he gave the Hindu name Dwarakamayi to the mosque in which he lived, practised both Hindu and Muslim rituals, taught using words and figures that drew from both traditions and took samadhi in Shirdi. One of his well-known epigrams, Allah Malik (God is King) and Sabka Malik Ek (Everyone’s Master is One), is associated with both Hinduism and Islam. He is also known to have said “Look to me, and I shall look to you” and Allah tera bhala karega. He was said to be an incarnation of Dattatreya.
Sai Baba’s date of birth including his birthplace remains unknown. Most information about Shirdi Sai Baba tends to be derived from a book called Shri Sai Satcharitra written by a disciple called Hemadpant (also known as Annasaheb Dabholkar / Govind Raghunath) in 1922 in Marathi. The book itself is a compilation based on accounts by his various disciples and Hemadpant’s personal observations of Sai Baba from 1910 onwards.
There are various beliefs surrounding Sai Baba’s place of birth and parents. According to multiple sources, Sai Baba was born in a small village Pathri in Maharashtra to a boatman called Ganga Bhavadia and his wife Devagiriamma. Sai Baba is also claimed to have been born in Tamil Nadu. According to this version, his mother’s name was Vaishnavdevi and his father’s name was Abdul Sattar. Sri Narasimha Swamy, a devotee of Sai Baba wrote a book Life of Sai Baba. It claims that Sai Baba would make references to Patri in the Nizam State and much later in life told one of his staunch devotees. Many devotees of Sai Baba do not concern themselves with his birthplace or the religion of his family, as Baba actively discouraged such inquiry nor sought to align himself with any region or religion.
According to multiple sources, he was brought up by Fakir in early childhood. Even from an early age, he was always dispassionate and imbibed the detachment from his foster father, the Fakir. Unfortunately, the fakir too died within 4–5 years of adopting Baba.
Sai Baba at Shirdi Sai Baba’s real name remains unknown. The name Sai was given to him by Mahalsapati[a] when he arrived at Shirdi, a town now in the west Indian state of Maharashtra. The word Sai refers to a religious mendicant but can also mean God. In several Indian and Middle Eastern languages the term Baba is an honorific signifying grandfather, father, old man or sir. Thus Sai Baba denotes “holy father”, “saintly father” or (venerable) poor old man.
Some of Sai Baba’s disciples became famous as spiritual figures and saints, such as Mahalsapati, a priest of the Khandoba temple in Shirdi and Upasni Maharaj. He was revered by other saints as well, such as Saint Bidkar Maharaj, Saint Gagangiri Maharaj, Saint Janakidas Maharaj and Sati Godavari Mataji. Sai Baba referred to several saints as ‘my brothers’, especially the disciples of Swami Samartha of Akkalkot.
Sai Baba opposed all persecution based on religion or caste. He was an opponent of religious orthodoxy – Christian, Hindu and Muslim.
Sai Baba encouraged his devotees to pray, chant God’s name, and read holy scriptures. He told Muslims to study the Qur’an and Hindus to study texts such as the Ramayana, Bhagavad Gita and Yoga Vasistha. He advised his devotees and followers to lead a moral life, help others, love every living being without any discrimination, and develop two important features of character: faith (Shraddha) and patience (Saburi). He criticised atheism.
In his teachings, Sai Baba emphasised the importance of performing one’s duties without attachment to earthly matters and of being content regardless of the situation. In his personal practice, Sai Baba observed worship procedures belonging to Islam; he shunned any kind of regular rituals but allowed the practice of Salah, chanting of Al-Fatiha, and Qur’an readings at Muslim festival times. Occasionally reciting the Al-Fatiha, Baba enjoyed listening to mawlid and qawwali accompanied with the tabla and sarangi twice daily.
Sai Baba interpreted the religious texts of both Islam and Hinduism. He explained the meaning of the Hindu scriptures in the spirit of Advaita Vedanta. His philosophy also had numerous elements of bhakti. The three main Hindu spiritual paths — Bhakti Yoga, Jnana Yoga, and Karma Yoga — influenced his teachings.
Sai Baba encouraged charity and stressed the importance of sharing. He said
Unless there is some relationship or connection, nobody goes anywhere. If any men or creatures come to you, do not discourteously drive them away, but receive them well and treat them with due respect. Sri Hari (God) will certainly be pleased if you give water to the thirsty, bread to the hungry, clothes to the naked, and your verandah to strangers for sitting and resting. If anybody wants any money from you and you are not inclined to give, do not give, but do not bark at him like a dog.”
Baba himself maintained an ambiguous profile, unwilling to identify with either of the two religions. His Muslim devotees were fully convinced that he belonged to their fold, identifying him as an avaliā. The Hindu bhaktas also viewed him as one of them, since he often identified himself with their gods and customs. Sai Baba wanted to belong to all and be shared by all. When pressed on whether he was Hindu or Muslim, he would often get very angry. Once he told a devotee: “You have been with me for eighteen years now. Does Sai mean for you only these three and a half cubits of height?” Sai Baba was able to avoid clashes between the two communities, and, in fact, succeeded in unifying them in an atmosphere of general harmony. In a verse of the midday arti, devotees sing:
“In essence or basic principle, there is no difference whatever between Hindu and Muslim. You took birth in human body to point out this. You look with affection on both Hindus and Muslims. This, Sai, who pervades all, as the soul of all, shows.”
Baba would often talk about the Hindu gods, quoting from sacred texts or even commenting upon passages of the Bhagavad Gita, the Isha Upanishad, and so forth. The names of Krishna and Rama seem to have been particularly dear to him. With his Muslim followers, Baba would always talk of Allah and the Koran, often quoting Persian verses. One of his favourite expressions was “Allah rakhega vaiia rahena”, that is, “Let us be content with what we have, and submit our will to Allah.” On several occasions, Sai reassured his listeners by saying that he, like them, was but a devotee of Allah, a humble faqir with two arms and two legs. In later years, Parsis and even a few Christians would come to Shirdi. Sai Baba respected all creeds, true to his conviction that all religions are but particular paths leading to one ineffable goal. His notion of the unity of all mankind that appealed to everyone was very congruous with Sufism of Islam. “God being one and the master of all also meant that all his creatures were part of one big family,” writes Sikand. “This belief was entirely in keeping with … the teachings of Sufis, who believed that the light of God exists in every creature, indeed in every particle of His creation.” Sai Baba urged his Hindu followers to read their holy books and find their own path. For him, all paths were equally valid, “Ishwar” (the Hindu God) and “Allah” being synonymous.
Padukas of Sai Baba People coming to his abode were so taken aback to see Hindus, Muslims, and others living together so peacefully that in many instances it changed their entire lives and belief systems.
Miracles Sai Baba’s disciples and devotees claim that he performed many miracles such as bilocation, levitation, mind-reading, materialisation, exorcisms, entering a state of Samādhi at will, lighting lamps with water, removing his limbs or intestines and sticking them back to his body (khandana yoga), curing the incurably sick, appearing beaten when another was beaten, preventing a mosque from falling down on people, and helping his devotees in other miraculous ways. He also gave Darshan (vision) to people in the form of Sri Rama, Krishna, Vithoba, Shiva and many other gods depending on the faith of devotees.
According to his followers, he appeared to them in their dreams and gave them advice. His devotees have documented their experiences.
John the Baptist was an incarnation of the Peacock Angel. This truth is revealed by understanding the deities John was linked with during his life.
John was recognized to be an incarnation of Elijah, the prophet who was synonymous with the Sufis’ al-Khadr, the “Green Man.” The Green Man is one of the titles of Tawsi Melek, whose etheric feathers engulfed the Earth and then crystallized to become the vegetation of our planet.
John the Baptist was also recognized as the incarnation of Sanat Kumara, the Hindu Avatar whose brother, Sananda Kumara, returned with him as the reincarnated Jesus. Sanat Kumara is the Hindu version of the Peacock Angel.
And John was also identified as the Sumerian Avatar, Enki, who returns to Earth at the beginning of every great cycle of time, and like John spends half his life in water and half on land. The connection between Enki and the future John was revealed to the Jews during their time of captivity in Babylonia.
Sanat Kumara, Enki, John, and Roman Green Man, Janus, are all synonymous and share the same name, which is a version of Jnana, meaning “Gnosis.”
One of the 18 Maheshvara Siddhas responsible for founding a school of yoga based upon the ancient teachings of Sanat Kumara – the founder of the Gnostic-Alchemical Path – was the Siddha Babaji. Also known as Nagaraj, “King of the Nagas,” Babaji was a student of both Agastyar and Boganathar. Babaji’s school of yoga, called Kriya Yoga, was based upon the Kaya Kalpa science of pranayama or breath control.
According to the authorized biography in Babaji and The 18 Siddha Kriya Yoga Tradition by Babaji devotee M. Govindam, Babaji was born in 203 B.C. to a priest of the Shiva temple in Parangipetttai, southern India. Within his father’s temple was a life-sized image of Sanat Kumara or Lord Murugan that had originally been a huge Shiva lingam before magically transforming into the forever young form of the Kumara, Babaji spent much of his earliest years assisting his father in the temple and immersing himself in the worship of this image of Murugan.
At five years of age Babaji was kidnapped, but then set free again soon afterwards. Rather than return to his home and family, however, Babaji decided to renounce worldy life and travel throughout India as a mendicant and renunciate. During his subsequent wanderings Babaji encountered many enlightened Siddhas, each of whom taught him some facet of Yoga. At one point his travels led him to the shrine of Murugan in Sri Lanka where he met the Siddha Bogarnath and gained instruction in both alchemy and meditation Then, following six months of intensive spiritual practice under Bogarnath’s expert guidance, Babaji achieved a deep state of transcendental absorption or Samadhi during which he achieved spiritual communion with the forever young boy.
After leaving Sri Lanka, Babaji journeyed to the Pothigai Hills with the goal of receiving the spiritual blessings of the Siddha Agastya With great determination Babaji camped at the Courtallam Falls which were nearby the sage’s secluded ashram and vowed to undergo severe austerities until he was blessed with the divine presence of the diminutive sage. Following forty-eight days of rigorous tapas (austerities) Babaji’s resolve bore fruit and the diminutive Siddha spontaneously appeared from behind a tree. Agastyar blessed Babaji and initiated him into that branch of Kaya Kalpa known as Vasi Yoga, the science of breath control. Following this initiation, Agastyar gave Babaji instructions to travel to the Himalayas and master pranayama.
Babaji immersed himself in intensive yoga within the Himalayan caves before founding an ashram near the Shiva Temple of Badrinath. In due time he achieved immortality and became patriarch of his own school of Vasi Yoga called Kriya Yoga. Through the dynamic yogis who subsequently achieved enlightenment under Babaji’s guidance, including the Siddhas Lahari Mahasaya, Shri Yukteswar, and Paramahansa Yogananda, Kriya Yoga eventually spread throughout the world. Babaji Nagaraj is said to currently be approximately 2000 years in age while continuing to anchor the high frequencies of Spirit in an immortal physical form in his Himalayan retreat.
From: The Return of the Serpents of Wisdom 🐍 by Mark Amaru Pinkham
Saint Sarah aka Santa Sara La Kali aka Sarah the Egyptian aka Sarasvati Lakshmi Kali, daughter of Jesus & Mary Magdalene, known by Catholics as Egyptian servant to the Three Mary’s as they fled from Roman persecution in Jerusalem to France to a place now known as Saintes Maries de la Mer in Camarque, France.
To the Romani Gypsies, she is Santa Sara la Kali, the Patron Saint of the Gypsies. To Gnostics, Essenes & Nazoreans she was actually the daughter of Jesus & Mary Magdalene, disguised as a servant to hide her true identity. It is said that, every year since their arrival the people have been celebrating the day of their arrival to France at the coast with a large pilgrimage festival. The day of the pilgrimage honouring Sarah is May 24; her statue is carried down to the sea on this day to re-enact her arrival in France.
Some authors have drawn parallels between the ceremonies of the pilgrimage and the worship of the Hindu goddess Kali (a form of Durga), subsequently identifying the two. Ronald Lee states:
“If we compare the ceremonies with those performed in France at the shrine of Sainte Sara (called Sara e Kali in Romani), we become aware that the worship of Kali/Durga/Sara has been transferred to a Christian figure… in France, to a non-existent “sainte” called Sara, who is actually part of the Kali/Durga/Sara worship among certain groups in India.”
The name “Sara” itself is seen in the appellation of Durga as Kali in the famed text Durgasaptashati.
In The Rozabal Line, author Ashwin Sanghi puts forward that Sara-la-Kali refers to the three Hindu goddesses – Saraswati, Lakshmi, and Kali – the goddesses of Knowledge, Wealth and Power – symbolizing the trinity of female power.
We are already aware… based on recent scientific studies of DNA, that modern humanity originated in Africa, that African people are the world’s aboriginal people and that all modern humans can ultimately trace their ancestral roots back to Africa. If not for the primordial migrations of early African people, humanity would have remained physically Africoid, and the rest of the world outside of the African continent absent of human life. This is our starting point.
Since the first modern humans (Homo sapiens sapiens) were of African birth, the African presence globally can be demonstrated through the history of the Black populations that have inhabited the world within the span of recent humanity. Not only are African people the aboriginal people of the planet, however, there is abundant evidence to show that Black people created and sustained many of the world’s earliest and most enduring civilizations. Such was the case in India.
The questions we pose here are simply these: Who are the African people of India? What is their significance in the annals of history? Precisely what have they done and what are they doing now? These are extremely serious questions that warrant serious and fundamental answers.
ANCIENT AFRICA AND EARLY INDIA
Exceptionally valuable writings reflecting close relationships between Africa and early India have existed for more than two thousand years. In the first century B.C.E., for example, the famous Greek historian Diodorus Siculus penned that,
“From Ethiopia he (Osiris) passed through Arabia, bordering upon the Red Sea as far as India…. He built many cities in India, one of which he called Nysa, willing to have remembrance of that (Nysa) in Egypt, where he was brought up.”
INDIA’S EARLIEST CIVILIZATION
In Greater India, more than a thousand years before the foundations of Greece and Rome, proud and industrious Black men and women known as Dravidians erected a powerful civilization. We are referring here to the Indus Valley civilization- -India’s earliest high-culture, with major cities spread out along the course of the Indus River. The Indus Valley civilization was at its height from about 2200 B.C.E. to 1700 B.C.E. This phase of its history is called the Harappan, the name being derived from Harappa, one of the earliest known Indus Valley cities.
In 1922, about 350 miles northeast of Harappa, another large Indus city, Mohenjo-daro (the Mound of the Dead) was identified. Mohenjo-daro and Harappa were apparently the chief administrative centers of the Indus Valley complex, and since their identification, several additional cities, including Chanhu-daro, Kalibangan, Quetta and Lothal have been excavated.
The Indus cities possessed multiple level houses enhanced by sophisticated wells, drainage systems and bathrooms with flushing toilets. A recognized scholar on the Indus Valley civilization, Dr. Walter Fairservis, states that the “Harappans cultivated cotton and perhaps rice, domesticated the chicken and may have invented the game of chess and one of the two great early sources of nonmuscle power: the windmill.”
The decline and fall of the Indus Valley civilization has been linked to several factors, the most important of which were the increasingly frequent incursions of the White people known in history as Aryans–violent Indo-European tribes initially from central Eurasia and later Iran. Indeed, the name Iran means the “land of the Aryan.”
APARTHEID IN INDIA
The White tribes that invaded India and disrupted Black civilization there are known as Aryans. The Aryans were not necessarily superior warriors to the Blacks but they were aggressive, developed sophisticated military technologies and glorified military virtues. After hundreds of years of intense martial conflict the Aryans succeeded in subjugating most of northern India. Throughout the vanquished territories a rigid, caste-segmented social order was established with the masses of conquered Blacks (called Shudras) essentially reduced to slaves to the Whites and imposed upon for service in any capacity required by their White conquerors. This vicious new world order was cold-bloodily racist, with the Whites on top, the mixed races in the middle, and the overwhelming majority of Black people on the very bottom. In fact, the Aryan term varna, denoting one’s societal status and used interchangeably with caste, literally means color or complexion and reflects a prevalent racial hierarchy. Truly, India is still a racist country. White supremacist David Duke claimed “that his 1970′s visit to India was a turning point in his views on the superiority of the White race.”
Caste law in India, based originally on race, regulated all aspects of life, including marriage, diet, education, place of residence and occupation. This is not to deny that there were certain elements of the Black aristocracy that managed to gain prominence in the dominant White social structure. The masses of conquered Black people, however, were regarded by the Whites as Untruth itself. The Whites claimed to have emerged from the mouth of God; the Blacks, on the other hand, were said to have emerged from the feet of God. This was the ugly reality for the Black masses in conquered India. It was written that:
“A Sudra [Black] who intentionally reviles twice-born men [Whites] by criminal abuse, or criminally assaults them with blows, shall be deprived of the limb with which he offends. If he has criminal intercourse with an Aryan woman, his organ shall be cut off, and all his property confiscated. If the woman has a protector, the Sudra shall be executed. If he listens intentionally to a recitation of the Veda [a traditional Hindu religious text], his tongue shall be cut out. If he commits them to memory his body shall be split in half.”
Servitude to Whites became the basis of the lives of the Black people of India for generation after generation after generation. With the passage of time, this brutally harsh, color-oriented, racially-based caste system became the foundation of the religion that is now practiced throughout all India. This is the religion known as Hinduism.
THE BUDDHA AND BUDDHISM IN INDIA
Buddhism appeared in India during the sixth century B.C.E. and came in the form of a protest against Hinduism. Buddhism opposed the arrogance of caste, and preached tolerance. It should not be surprising, then, that it developed a large and rapid following in the regions of India where the Blacks had survived in substantial numbers. On the emergence of Buddhism in India, Diop has suggested that:
“It would seem that Buddha was an Egyptian priest, chased from Memphis by the persecution of Cambyses. This tradition would justify the portrayal of Buddha with woolly hair. Historical documents do not invalidate this tradition…There is general agreement today on placing in the sixth century not only Buddha but the whole religious and philosophical movement in Asia with Confucius in China, Zoroaster in Iran. This would confirm the hypothesis of a dispersion of Egyptian priests at that time spreading their doctrine in Asia.”
Dr. Vulindlela Wobogo, another African-centric scholar, has observed that:
“Manifestations of the Buddha in Asia are Black with woolly hair. They all appear to be Egypto-Nubian priests who fled Egypt…The priests carried their spiritual knowledge but lost much of the scientific knowledge for obvious reasons. The well-known aspects of Buddhism and its companion, yoga, are all simply Egypto-Nubian priesthood practices, meditation, and…the belief that one could attain a god-like state if the soul was liberated from the body through knowledge and denial.”
In a monumental two volume work entitled A Book of the Beginnings, originally published in 1881, Gerald Massey recorded that:
“It is not necessary to show that the first colonisers of India were Black, but it is certain that the Black Buddha of India was imaged in the Africoid type. In the Black [African] god, whether called Buddha or Sut-Nahsi, we have a datum. they carry in their color the proof of their origin. The people who first fashioned and worshipped the divine image in the Africoid mold of humanity must, according to all knowledge of human nature, have been Africans themselves. For the Blackness is not merely mystical, the features and the hair of Buddha belong to the Black race.”
In the first volume of his massive text Anacalypsis, Godfrey Higgins wrote that:
“The religion of Buddha, of India, is well known to have been very ancient. In the most ancient temples scattered through Asia, where his worship is yet continued, he is found black as jet, with the flat face, thick lips and curly hair of the African.”
DALIT: THE BLACK UNTOUCHABLES OF INDIA
Possibly the most substantial percentage of Asia’s Blacks can be identified among India’s 160 million “Untouchables” or “Dalits.” Frequently they are called “Outcasts.” Indian nationalist leader and devout Hindu Mohandas K. Gandhi called them “Harijans,” meaning “children of god.” The official name given them in India’s constitution (1951) is “Scheduled Castes.” “Dalit,” meaning “crushed and broken,” is a name that has come into prominence only within the last four decades. “Dalit” reflects a radically different response to oppression.
The Dalit are demonstrating a rapidly expanding awareness of their African ancestry and their relationship to the struggle of Black people throughout the world. They seem particularly enamored of African-Americans. African-Americans, in general, seem almost idolized by the Dalit, and the Black Panther Party, in particular, is virtually revered. In April 1972, for example, the Dalit Panther Party was formed in Bombay, India. This organization takes its pride and inspiration directly from the Black Panther Party of the United States. This is a highly important development due to the fact that the Untouchables have historically been so systematically terrorized that many of them, even today, live in a perpetual state of extreme fear of their upper caste oppressors. This is especially evident in the villages. The formation of the Dalit Panthers and the corresponding philosophy that accompanies it signals a fundamental change in the annals of resistance, and Dalit Panther organizations have subsequently spread to other parts of India. In August 1972, the Dalit Panthers announced that the 25th anniversary of Indian independence would be celebrated as a day of mourning. In 1981, in Bangalore, India Dravidian journalist V.T. Rajshekar published the first issue of Dalit Voice–the major English journal of the Black Untouchables. In a 1987 publication entitled the African Presence in Early Asia, Rajshekar stated that:
“The African-Americans also must know that their liberation struggle cannot be complete as long as their own blood-brothers and sisters living in far off Asia are suffering. It is true that African-Americans are also suffering, but our people here today are where African-Americans were two hundred years ago.
African-American leaders can give our struggle tremendous support by bringing forth knowledge of the existence of such a huge chunk of Asian Blacks to the notice of both the American Black masses and the Black masses who dwell within the African continent itself.”
HABSHIS AND SIDDIS: AFRICAN DYNASTIES IN INDIA
India also received its share of African bondsmen, of whom the most famous was the celebrated Malik Ambar (1550-1626). Ambar, like a number of Africans in medieval India, elevated himself to a position of great authority. Malik Ambar, whose original name was Shambu, was born around 1550 in Harar, Ethiopia. After his arrival in India Ambar was able to raise a formidable army and achieve great power in the west Indian realm of Ahmadnagar. Ambar was a brilliant diplomat and administrator. He encouraged manufactures and built canals and mosques. He gave pensions to poets and scholars, established a postal service, and ultimately became one of the most famous men in India.
In a collective form, however, and in respect to long term influence, the African sailors known as Siddis stand out. Certainly, Siddi kingdoms were established in western India in Janjira and Jaffrabad as early as 1100 AD. After their conversion to Islam, the African freedmen of India, originally called Habshi from the Arabic, called themselves Sayyad (descendants of Muhammad) and were consequently called Siddis. Indeed, the island Janjira was formerly called Habshan, meaning Habshan’s or African’s land. Siddi signifies lord or prince. It is further said that Siddi is an expression of respectful address commonly used in North Africa, like Sahib in India. Specifically, it is said to be an honorific title given to the descendants of African natives in the west of India, some of whom were distinguished military officers and administrators of the Muslim princes of the Deccan.
In the second decade of the sixteenth century a European traveler named Armando Cortesao noted that:
“The people who govern the kingdom [Bengal] are Abyssinians [Ethiopians]. These men are looked upon as knights; they are greatly esteemed; they wait on the kings in their apartments. The chief among them are eunuchs and these come to be kings and great lords in the kingdom. Those who are not eunuchs are the fighting men. After the king, it is to this people that the kingdom is obedient from fear.”
The Siddis were a tightly knit group, highly aggressive, and even ferocious in battle. They were employed largely as security forces for Muslim fleets in the Indian Ocean, a position they maintained for centuries. The Siddi commanders were titled Admirals of the Mughal Empire, and received an annual salary of 300,000 rupees. According to Ibn Battuta (1304-1377), the noted Muslim writer who journeyed through both Africa and Asia, the Siddis “are the guarantors of safety on the Indian Ocean; let there be but one of them on a ship and it will be avoided by the Indian pirates and idolaters.”
Leonard Howell, known as the founder of the Rastafari movement, was born in Clarendon, Jamaica. On November 2, 1930, Haile Selassie I was crowned by the emperor of Ethiopia. Howell interpreted this as a fulfillment of the words of Marcus Garvey when he said in the 1920’s, “Look to Africa for the crowning of a black king, He shall be the Redeemer!”
In 1933, Howell founded Rastafari movement in Jamaica with Joseph -, Arch Bold Dunk and others. Howell was accused of sedition due to this activity, and was captured by police authorities for 2 years, but even after prison, he fought with the power of Jamaica and developed Rastafari movement.
Howell was born on June 16, 1898 in May Crawle village in the Bull Head mountain district of upper Clarendon in Jamaica. He was the eldest of a family of ten children. Charles Theophilus Howell, his father, worked as peasant cultivator and tailor. Clementina Bennett, his mother, worked as an agricultural laborer.
During the First World War, Howell worked as a seaman and served as part of a Jamaican contingent sent to Panama. Before temporarily settling in Panama in 1918, he travelled back and forth between New York City and Panama several times. While in New York he became a member of Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA) after being confronted with his identity as a black man in Harlem for the first time and meeting Garvey, the revolutionary UNIA leader, in person.
Howell lived abroad for a total of some twenty years in his early life, during which time he was arrested and jailed for his involvement with the UNIA because the organization’s pro-black messages were viewed as threatening. After migrating to Panama and the United States, he eventually returned home in December 1932 at the age of 34 after being deported from the US. He was deported because of his involvement with the UNIA, which was perceived as threatening by the US government, due to the organization’s messages of black power and anti-colonialism. Upon returning to his homeland, he decided to leave his family home and spread the word about Rastafarianism. This decision to break away from his home was due to a conflict between Howell and his family, presumably because of his controversial belief in the divine nature of Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia.
Howell’s first public articulation of the divinity of Haile Selassie occurred in January 1933. This first open deification, which proclaimed the Emperor of Ethiopia to be the incarnation of God, took place at “Redemption Ground” in Kingston but was not successful in gaining converts.
In February 1933, Howell relocated his meeting to a southeastern parish of St. Thomas and two months later, on April 18, he addressed about two hundred people at a meeting in Trinity Ville, St. Thomas. During this meeting, police were present to monitor and control the event, which they deemed to be of a “seditious nature.” Despite concerns, authorities chose not to press charges against Howell so as not to draw extra attention to his movement and decided instead to closely monitor him.
According to Howell and his followers, Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia was the “Black Messiah” – an incarnation of God predicted by biblical prophecy. Howell believed that the grand coronation of Haile Selassie (who was widely traditionally claimed to be the descendant of King David, King Solomon, and the Queen of Sheba, in part due to the medieval Ethiopian text Kebra Nagast), was the realization of a prophecy. The grandness of the emperor’s ascension to power appeared to validate Howell’s imperative claim.
Howell’s teachings often began with background information about the people, land, and sovereignty of Ethiopia as an unchanged land populated by original, primitive Christian people who were under direct rule of a king who was a direct descendant of King David. He idealized Ethiopia in his preaching, calling the country a land with unmatched people and a perfect language, the sole uncorrupted language on Earth. Howell emphasized the coming of a new civilization based upon and founded in the glory and power of Haile Selassie, the “Supreme Black King.” He instructed his followers to adore the Ethiopian emperor as the supreme God over all of humanity. In Howell’s view, it was through Ethiopia that the truths of good character, social order, manhood and womanhood were preserved and were unfolding for all to see. Howell preached that Ethiopian culture was re-emerging to overtake hegemonic Anglo-Saxon forces that had kept Africans enslaved.
[Core values, leadership, and social network]
Among his followers, Howell preferred being called Gangunguru Maragh or G.G. Maragh to distinguish his ritual, mystical personality from his secular identity. Howell’s ritual name is thought to be a combination of three Hindi words – gyan (wisdom), gun (virtue or talent), and guru (teacher). In Hindi, Maragh means “great kings” or “king of kings.” Howell used this name as a pseudonym when he published The Promised Key.
In a meeting at Port Mortant, St. Thomas, on September 1933, it is recorded that Howell held a meeting that began with the singing of hymns. Then, Howell reportedly taunted clergymen of other religious denominations at the gathering and discouraged people from attending church because “ministers were liars.” He also spoke critically of slavery, claiming that “the White man stole Africa from the Africans, and that Black people should think that Africa is their home, not Jamaica”.
Howell’s message of praise for Emperor Haile Selassie also came with an open call for black supremacy as a way to combat colonialism and reject oppression by whites. At times, Howell would ask his congregants to join together and sing “God Save the King” – the king being Haile Selassie. Howell’s central doctrine acted as a force against white colonial ideology due to his placement of blackness as morally superior to whiteness, as is explained in his widely read publication, The Promised Key.
Howell is remembered as being a charismatic and authoritarian leader who sincerely cared about the wellbeing of his followers. In 1937, Howell founded the Ethiopian Salvation Society (ESS) whose objective was to use collective savings to better its members. A secondary purpose of the ESS was to help spread the good news about salvation and Christianity and underscore the value of self-help and good citizenship. These secondary purposes were expressly stated so as to shield the organization from suspicion that it was promoting sedition. Nevertheless, in 1940 the Jamaican governor responded to pressure from the colonial secretary and the labor leadership by officially banning a meeting of the ESS due to the resentment the organization was creating as well as its internationalization.
In addition to his leadership role in the ESS, Howell served as a role model and father figure for the growing Rastafarian community. His audacious, generous personality, combined with his well-travelled background, made early Rastafarians particularly receptive to his messages. Howell brought “the hope of a new generation, one which was inspired by the magnificence of the new Ethiopian emperor.”
To expand Howell’s Rastafarian network, he formed relationships with other black groups such as the Afro-Athlican Constructive Gaathly and the UNIA. Additionally he collaborated closely with other icons of the Rastafarian movement such as Marcus Garvey and George Padmore, a Trinidadian journalist.
Howell’s appeal for identification with Africa was in opposition to concurrent movements in Jamaica promoting a Jamaican creole nationalism. Howell positioned himself as an opponent of the labor nationalists Bustamante and Manley who had gained a substantial following among the working class. Howell preached to both the working class and the peasantry in Jamaica, attempting to unite disenfranchised black people to overcome colonial oppression. Jamaica’s independence in 1962 (which nevertheless maintained social, political and economic ties between Jamaica and Great Britain) was largely a disappointment for Howell, who had called for the complete severance of relations with imperial Britain.
[Trials and punishments]
In January 1934, Howell and Robert Hinds, another pioneer of the Rastafarian movement, were arrested and charged with sedition due to their gatherings and speeches at a meeting of 300 people at Seaforth, St Thomas, on December 10, 1933.
Howell was put on trial for sedition on March 13, 1934, and pleaded not guilty to openly expressing hatred and contempt for the Jamaican government and the King in addition to disturbing public peace on the island. Howell defended himself in court, using a photograph of Haile Selassie as evidence. During this historic trial, Howell is remembered as being the first person to declare that Haile Selassie was “the Messiah returned to earth.” Ultimately he was sentenced to two years in jail for sedition by the Jamaican chief justice, Robert William Lyall-Grant.
Later, in 1938, Howell was sent to a mental asylum in Kingston called the Bellevue Aslyum after being certified as insane for the inflammatory statements he published in his book The Promised Key. In this publication, which was released while Howell was still incarcerated, he labeled the Roman Catholic Pope as “Satan the Devil” and created the impression that war was being declared against colonialism and white supremacy – which Howell asserted should be replaced with “Black supremacy.” Furthermore, he openly objected to locally created religious systems like Revivalism and Obeah, a Jamaican folk practice. Although small, the book was powerful and very popular to the dismay of the Jamaican government.
As one of the most charismatic and outspoken of Rastafarian leaders, Howell was incarcerated at notably higher rates than other pioneers of the Rastafarian movement, such as Joseph Nathaniel Hibbert and Hinds. Described as “the most persecuted Rastafarian to date,” Howell suffered considerably under constant state surveillance because of his Rastafarian teachings. Due to his repeated imprisonment and persecution, he suffered the blow of being absent during Haile Selassie’s 1966 visit to Jamaica.
Especially threatening to the powers that be was his prophetic call for people to destroy the legitimacy and might of the British empire and international white supremacy, a message that caused people to reconsider their for identity, agency, and socio-political mobilization in Jamaica and elsewhere.
[Creation of Pinnacle Community]
Following his release from prison for his teachings of black power and denunciation of colonial rule, Howell created the first Rastafarian village in Jamaica at Sligoville, St. Catherine in 1940. The settlement was called “Pinnacle” due to its high hilltop elevation and was symbolically located in the first free village established to house former slaves in Jamaica. Pinnacle was one of the country’s first self-sustaining communities, its community members were able to meet their needs without dependence on outside resources. Some refer to Pinnacle as a commune, in which Howell’s form of socialism was practiced. Soon after its foundation, other similar Rastafarian communities were established across the country. Pinnacle was especially known for the cultivation of ganja (marijuana) that has religious significance for Rastafarians.
In efforts to shut down Howell and his followers, police raided Howell’s community of Pinnacle multiple times and labeled the community a “communist experiment” in 1941. Just one year after the creation of the settlement, government forces infiltrated and arrested many of Howell’s followers. After escaping immediate arrest, Howell was eventually arrested and tried once again for sedition and consequently was faced with two more years behind bars. Upon his release in 1943, he returned to Pinnacle once again. Howell hired guards and brought in watch dogs to protect Pinnacle from future attacks.
The police raided Pinnacle several more times in the 1950s. In 1954, militia invaded the community and almost completely destroyed the village. Even after this mass destruction, settlers returned, though the settlement was never restored to its previous thriving state. During a final raid in 1958, the police cleared out the remaining residents completely. Despite its ultimate destruction, the impact of the settlement made it legendary among other settlements around the country, who were observed to have been “miniature Pinnacles.”
[Alleged disappearance and ongoing legacy]
Some claim that Howell disappeared from public sight between 1958 and 1960, completely dropping out of his role as a Rastafarian leader. Accounts that he was neither heard from nor interacted with between this period and his death in 1981 have been challenged by historians who examined his life, however. Even after the final major raid of Pinnacle and Howell’s confinement in a mental asylum, he reportedly continued in his leadership of the Pinnacle community and as a Rastafari foundational role model, as evidenced by his role as a defendant in several cases at the Home Circuit Court, Kingston, regarding disputes about his ownership of Pinnacle.
Today Howell is remembered as a pioneer of the Rastafarian movement. Additionally, in honor of his values and persistent fight against colonial authority, he is seen as a leader of Pan-Africanism. To fight for his remembrance, the Leonard P Howell Foundation was created to “perpetuate and honor the memory of Leonard P Howell.” The Foundation calls for the restoration of a portion of the Pinnacle Property so that it can become a UNESCO world heritage site, an international Rastafarian worship and research center, and a monument in tribute to the vision and leadership of Leonard Percival Howell.
Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, ‘Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment’: But I say unto you, that whosoever is angry with his brother without cause shall be in danger of the judgment : and whosoever shall say to his brother, ‘Raca’ shall be in danger of the council : but whoever shall say, ‘Thou fool,’ shall be in danger of hell fire. (Matthew 5:21-22)
Raca : a derogatory term in Aramaic (literally, “I spit on you”) conveying extreme contempt.
Raça Negra : Portuguese for “Black Race”
Seems possible that in Jesus’ time Raca was a racial slur against black peoples.. could it have been equivalent to the N-word at the time?
Jesus spoke out against injustices, this verse is one clear example. He ministered to the sick and outcasted and to prostitutes and forgotten ones.. legends of him going to India say he spoke out against the caste system there and was met with fury by the ruling priestly elites..
“Jesus makes another point in these verses : Words are very potent vibratory actions, affecting favorably or adversely the one who uttered them and also the one to whom they are directed. To express contempt to any individual (“say to his brother, ‘Raca’”) is spiritually libelous against that individual’s soul, which is ever perfect regardless of how loathsome his egoistic expression. By scorning a fellow being, one demeans his own soul’s forbearing nature and subjects himself to the scrutiny of the tribunal of his conscience and its records of his many regrettable failings. It would be a humbling, if not horrific, experience if one had to face an archival reading of the shames in all of his past incarnations. The merciful God has forgiven so much in every man who is consciously struggling toward the light of wisdom; it is the awakening nobility of the soul that likewise feels patience rather than contempt for others whose actions show no such awakening.
Further, anyone who calls another a “fool” shall himself suffer from the fire of ignorance. Ignorance is hell, as it engenders all manner of evil and burns away wisdom. True knowledge and wisdom are the source of salvation from the miseries of the human condition. To inhibit the potential unfoldment of anyone’s soul wisdom by a strong suggestion of ineptness is to do them a great wrong. Negating anyone’s will and branding the subconscious mind with defeatist thoughts of inferior abilities is reprehensible. To foster in anyone an attitude of surrender to ignorance sets in motion the lawful principle that to pull down another human being is a sin that puts oneself “in danger of hell fire” – the fire of ignorance that consumes one’s own spiritual merit in the act of willfully demoralizing, humiliating, or denigrating another person.
It is plain that Jesus spoke figuratively in his reference to hellfire*. He did not mean that the omnipresent God of love has created leaping tongues of fire in a hell at some point of space to burn the disembodied souls of sinners, rife with bad karma. The Heavenly Spirit who is the Father of all human children could not possibly roast them alive forever because they made some temporary mistakes during their sojourn on earth.”
-Paramhansa Yogananda (The Second Coming of Christ)
*The concept of eternal damnation in hellfire, as in orthodox interpretations, is not supported in this verse or elsewhere in the New Testament. The word used for “hell” in the original Greek of the Gospel is : Gehenna, from Hebrew : Ge Hinnom, the valley of Hinnom southwest of Jerusalem, where children were formally burned as living sacrifices to the Ammonite god Moloch (2 Chronicles 28:3; Jeremiah 7:31-21). In Jesus’ time, according to Biblical historians, the valley was used as a dump for the filth of the city, where continual fires were kept to consume it – “a place,” according to commentator John Gill, “whose fire was never quenched; and in which they burned the bones of any thing that was unclean, and dead carcasses, and other pollutions.” The name was thus commonly used by the Jews to denote the after-death realm of punishment. Encyclopedia Britannica states about Gehenna : “Mentioned several times in the New Testament (e.g., Matthew, Mark, Luke, and James) as a place in which fire will destroy the wicked, it also is noted in the Talmud, a compendium of Jewish law, lore, and commentary, as a place of purification, after which one is released from further torture.”
Note that the valley of Gehenna/Hinnom, where these fires were perpetuating burning in Jesus’ time sound very similar to the burning ghats of India, where dead bodies are burned ceremonially, as a spiritual purification and their souls are thus freed from bodily consciousness.
Also note that the valley of Gehenna/Hinnom was previously the place where children were offered as living sacrifices to the god Moloch. Thus, the place was defiled and came to be known as a symbolic ‘hell’.
Today, there still exists a Satanic cult to Moloch that sacrifices children and operates in elite levels of politics, government, Vatican, Hollywood, ect.. notice how these same corrupt people, corporations and special interest groups use racism to continually & systematically downpress and suppress the people of God. Especially the black peoples of the earth. Jesus was black, maybe the Jewish and Roman elites even called him ‘Raca’??
There is only one Jah, one God with Infinite Names.
Aristotle referred to the Ethiopians as a people of both Kush (Africa) & Sind (India).. Queen of Sheba ruled over the land of Sheba/Shiva/Saba.. the indigenous traditions of the Sabians was ancient African Shiva & Shakti worship.
To overstand the issue with iconography verses idolatry one must know the difference between a graven image & sacred murti, the ancient Egyptians had a similar practice as Hindus when they would designate specific icons for temple worship and a ritual is performed where the breath of God/Life is breathed into the icon and thus the image becomes a living deity… that being said.. when Yeshua went to India, he learned about the sacred science behind murtis, mandalas, Hindu & Buddhist symbolism and yantras, mantras and pujas BUT he also saw the corruption of the caste system & how the elite class of Brahman priests and people in general would worship and lavish great riches and honor to their stone icons but treat their fellow brothers & sisters like animals or worse.. thus Yeshua preached a razor edge distinction regarding this.. and emphasized to the people that the real deity to be worshipped is within the heart of all living beings.. the so-called low caste folks (Dravidians aka Lost Tribes of Israel) loved Saint Issa, as they called him in the East, but the elites didn’t like what he was preaching at all (threatening their hierarchy of power), and the story goes that then Yeshu had to flee from some of these areas of India to the Himalayas and stay with some Buddhist monks whom agreed with his teachings on rejecting the caste system. These stories can be found in The Aquarian Gospel of Jesus Christ, The Unknown Life of Jesus Christ, The Christ of India & various other manuscripts that have been hidden & repressed for centuries. The secret archives of the Vatican has several of these various manuscripts as well as ancient icons/murtis of these connections and sadly many of these manuscripts were destroyed in the 2 worst literary holocausts in history.. the burning of the library of Alexandria & the burning of the Saint Thomas Christian’s library in India, both burned down by the Roman Catholic Church.
When Haile Selassie, the emperor of Ethiopia was gifted with a Ramayana by an Indian sannyasi, he smiled, and said they were all descendants of Lord Rama. He explained how the Ethiopians are called as Cushites, or coming down from Kusha, a son of Rama. The country is called Kushadwip, or the land of the son of Rama.
Ethiopians admit their ancestor as Kush, and they quote the Biblical story of Cush being a son of Ham (a phonetic misnomer of Ram). This only confirms to the widespread influence of Ramayana, even in a land that is 3000 miles away from the mainland of India.
Kemetic Yoga is the OG Sanatan Dharma brought from Ancient Kush (Ethiopia) to Ancient Sind (India) by the Dravidians in the first major human migrations out of Africa, and they founded the Indus Valley Culture & city of Harappan (Hara is a name of Shiva & Pan is an archetypal god often linked to Shiva) which was one of the most advanced in the ancient world, later it was the Aryans from the north that brought in many new ideas and later subjugated the Dravidians with the caste system. The Dravidians were mostly agricultural people who worshipped the Mother Goddess & Pushupati (Lords of the Animals) aka Shakti & Shiva in their indigenous African-Dravidian forms similar to the ancient traditions of the land of Kush/Saba/Sheba/Shiva but the Aryans were hunter/gatherers & would invade and conquer wherever they went, their pantheon was more War gods & Sky Gods like Indra and Surya.. these two traditions were eventually synthesized / merged to form modern Hindu religion. But the true mystical path of Sanatan Dharma is what the Sadhus (Holy Men) & Rastafari trod.. the lifestyle and consciousness of the Natural Mystic as Buddha, Krishna & Yahshua the Christ taught us.
Watch Yogiraj speak on his rare meeting with Haile Selassie I after his supposed death :