The Atlantean Symbolism of the Egyptian Temple - 2. Atlantis

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    I have seen the wicked man rising like a mighty cedar tree.
    Yet, he passed away, and could be found no more.

    Psalm 37:35

    In the present section the second part of our work on the symbolism of the Egyptian temple we study two fundamental aspects of that symbolism which, to our knowledge, have never been pointed out before:

    1. The Egyptian temples are stylized replicas of Atlantis, with its mountains, its pillars and its crypts represented explicitly.
    2. The Egyptian temples derive their architecture and conception from that of the Hindu temples of India and Indonesia, particularly those built in the so-called South Indian (or Dravidian) style.
    We begin by discussing the features of the Egyptian temples and their Atlantean symbolism, and then pass on to their Hindu archetypes. Finally, we discuss the Atlantean (Indonesian) origin of the Egyptians themselves and of the language they spoke, showing how they kept abreast of the Hindu conceptions by means of periodic visits to the Land of the Gods (Punt or Indonesia). Let us start by reviewing the conception and symbolism of the temples everywhere.

    The word "temple" derives from the Latin templum, itself derived from a radix tem- meaning "open court", as in the Greek temenos. We are used to temples built as closed edifices, such as Christian cathedrals, Arab mosques and Jewish synagogues. However, in the early temples everywhere, the place of worship consisted of an open court, at whose center stood the inner sanctum (or holy of holies), which was indeed closed.

    The worshippers were admitted to the temenos or open court, but their entrance in the inner sanctum was forbidden. There, an image of the god was kept and catered to by the priests who, alone of all people, were admitted there. The Hindus call this inner sanctum by the Sanskrit name of garbhagriha meaning "womb abode" (or "inner room"). In the inner sanctum the dead god "slept" quietly with his entourage, awaiting the instant to resurrect and come out in triumph, announcing the return of the Golden Age.

    This resurrection of the dead god (Osiris in Egypt, Shiva or Vishnu in India, Tammuz in Babylon, etc.) was periodically enacted by the priests, who brought out the image of the god for the ritual. The image was processioned in triumph (often by boat), usually meeting with its lover. After a few days of festivities, the god (or goddess) was again returned to the inner sanctum until it was time for a new resurgence.

    The adytum (or inner sanctum) often took the shape of the Holy Mountain under which the dead god and his court were buried. In Zozer's complex, built by Imhotep, and possibly the very first such structure to be built in Egypt, the garbhagriha took the shape of the famous stepped pyramid that survives even today to the delight of tourists and specialists both. In Babylon, the temple court surrounded the ziggurat, itself a kind of stepped pyramid not too far distinct from Zozer's stepped pyramid or, for that matter, from the similar structures found in Indonesia and even in the Americas (Yucatan, etc.).

    As a matter of fact, as we show elsewhere, Zozer's complex is a verbatim copy of pyramidal complexes of Angkor and Java. It is likely that Imhotep, a most mysterious figure, was fetched from there, along with a gang of expert masons, in order to teach the Egyptians the arts of stone-masonry and city-building, among others.1

    The Symbolism of the Christian Temple

    The symbolism of the Christian temple is masterfully described by J. Hani (Le Symbolisme du Temple Chrétien, Paris, 1978). Hani starts by asserting that "every sacred building is cosmic, and is made in the image of the world". He quotes St. Peter Damien, who affirms: "the church is the image of the universe".

    The walls and the columns of the church represent Heaven and Earth and, in a way, "a cathedral is a visual encyclopedia illustrating Creation". In no way the temple, Christian or not, is a realistic image of the Cosmos. It is, far more, a symbolic representation that portrays the inner mathematical structure of the world. The square shape of the Celestial Jerusalem (Rev. 21:12) one which many authorities assimilate to the Great Pyramid is the basic essence of temple architecture. As Hani asserts:

    The whole of sacred architecture consists, in reality, in the operation of "squaring the circle", that is, of transforming the circle into a square. The foundation of the building starts by its orientation [along the Cardinal Directions], done in a ritual manner... This process is traditional and universal, and is found everywhere there is a sacred architecture. It has been described by Vitruvius and was practiced in the Occident until the end of the Middle Ages.
    Hani then goes on to describing the traditional utilized in orienting the temple and lying its foundations. With the help of a gnomon (sundial), the architect determines the two axes of the Cardinal Directions (Cardo and Decumanus). This consists of a stake driven into the soil, to mark the center of the edifice. The maxima and minima of its shadow determine the axes of the Cardinal Directions. A circle is traced using the stake as a center, and the two axes serve as its perpendicular diameters. In a way, this operation is a "squaring of the circle", as it combines the fundamental elements of sacred geometry: the Center, the Circle and the Square or Cross.2

    The Circle represents Heaven (the circular horizon) and the Square represents Earth (the crossing Equator and Meridian Zero). So, the Crossed Circle symbolizes the Cosmic Hierogamy, the union of Heaven and Earth. This "squaring of the circle" is a central feature of temples everywhere. In Christian cathedrals we have the square nave at the center and the round dome or cupola above, representing Heaven.

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