Sep 15, 2011

Om the Dome for Fifty One Days

Crossposted from Reflections Journal.

William Henry has been, for some time, calling on people to "Om the Dome" of the US Capitol. Henry's interest in the underlying symbolism in DC architecture, particularly in the Capitol Rotunda, I've discussed previously here, here, and here. An attack on that symbolism is underway by far right Christian groups who are organizing a prayer event called DC40.

The Reformation Prayer Network, led by Cindy Jacobs, and the Heartland Apostolic Prayer Network, headed by John Benefiel, have joined together to produce a nation-wide event called “DC40.″  The goal of DC40 is to effect “eternal change in our nation’s capitol so our elected officials can govern from a new position of uncompromising light and understanding as we change the spiritual atmosphere over Washington DC forever.” This effort is variously named DC40, Forty Days of Light Over D.C., and 51 Days of Reformation Intercession.

The change DC40 wants to make is electing leaders who fear the Christian God and “find that compromise is not the way” as it is impossible to “compromise with unrighteousness.” The “uncompromising light” refers to a statement released by Heartland Apostolic Prayer Network, which says God’s word should be the legal authority in the United States and Christians should acknowledge no other,  “no power to purpose or accept any compromise of the promises of God, and we declare illegal in the earth any action or any people, Nation or nations that undertake what is contradictory to the Word of God.”

DC40 will, in particular, take aim against the Goddess Columbia.

As a first step, DC40 is taking aim at Columbia, patron goddess of the United States. Benefiel says America is “cursed” for living under a Pagan goddess whom he alternatively calls  Columbia or Baal.  Benefiel went on to say naming the capitol after Columbia and having Her statue atop the capitol building “gives her a legal right to mess things up in our nation’s capital” and is the reason legislators “go crazy” when they arrive there.   DC 40 says it is renaming the District of Columbia to the District of Christ to reclaim it for Jesus and urges the nation to repudiate Columbia.  Benefiel says that the only way to solve our country’s current problems is to divorce ourselves from our nation’s Pagan trappings.

Pagan groups are organizing counter events, including daily devotions to this patron goddess of the US.

Bloggers Hecate and Literata, both of whom live in the Washington DC area, are calling for Pagans to make daily devotions to Columbia and to pray to Her to help this country preserve its foundational commitment to religious liberty.

“I will be spending this time making a daily devotion to her, not against these conservative Christians, but in hopes that they and I might find ways to live peaceably together in a nation that values religious pluralism,” writes Literata.

Hecate echos this call and adds other steps Pagans can take, ” I propose to seriously ward my Bit of Earth, my own tiny temple to Columbia. I propose to, a number of times between now and November 11, 2011, circle the United States Capitol, sprinkling, inter alia, rosemary and warding the beautiful statue of Columbia that presides over, and directs energy into, the United States Capitol. I propose to write to my Senators and Congress person, on paper that I’ve charged and with ink that I’ve mixed with sacred herbs, and ask them to disavow this hateful group of Dominionists. I propose to ask my own Circle if we can do some protective magic. I propose, as Summer slips into Autumn and as the Veils Between the Worlds begin to thin, to call upon all of my ancestresses and ancestors, especially those who have worked to make America the Home of the Free, and ask them to block what the Dominionists are doing to this country and to my beloved City on a Hill. I’m an urban Pagan and I propose to do magic to sustain my urban area. And because I don’t enjoy being merely reactive, I intend to do some magic to strengthen Columbia’s hold over her own city, to help everyone who lives here to see the benefits that she brings to her polis, to increase her influence over this landbase.”

I find it interesting that this resurgence in attention to the iconography that is so evident in DC emerged just as I was getting ready to move back to the area. Notably Dan Brown's Lost Symbol, which I enjoyed, apparently spurred renewed interest in Masonry. But nearer and dearer to my heart is the more in depth William Henry material. I've always known there was a lot of Masonic and pagan symbolism hidden in plain sight in the Capitol but it's only recently that the I've become aware of the magnitude of the ideas that have been woven into this particular "navel" of the world.

I just started Graham Hancock and Robert Bauval's newly released Master Game, which is a somewhat updated version of their earlier book Talisman. I'm loving it. And looking at the vintage posters of Columbia, what strikes me most is what I now see is transparently borrowed from the French revolution. The liberty or Phrygian cap and Graeco-Roman garb is a dead giveaway. From The Master Game:

In street festivals staged during the French Revolution, the 'goddess Reason' was routinely personified by an actress garbed with a tricolor red, white and blue veil and wearing the so-called Phrygian cap . This same little red cap was in great vogue with the general public in the early part of the Revolution and was worn especially by the sans-culottes ('without culottes'), the most zealous faction who partook  in the thousands guillotine executions in Paris and throughout the country.

The Phrygian cap is the typical headwear of two well-known pagan deities: the goddess Cybele and the god Mithras.

Cybele was the one of the [sic]  great mother goddesses of antiquity and, more particularly at one stage of Roman history, whose 'republic' the French revolutionaries tried to emulate. As the name of her cap suggests, her cult origins were in ancient Phrygia (modern Turky). In statuary she was routinely associated with two lions, either depicted harnessed to her chariot or flanking the ceremonial throe used by the high-priests of her cult. Medieval and Renaissance scholars frequently identified her with the ancient Egyptian goddess Isis.

As per Hancock and Bauval, Isis made a stunning appearance after the destruction of the Bastille.

The day after the storming of the Bastille an enterprising local contractor, Monsieur Pierre-Fran├žois Palloy, took it upon himself to mobilise a workforce of 800 citizens to dismantle the hated prison stone by stone. The work was so well done that within a month most of the structure had been reduced to rubble with only a small part of the perimeter wall and foundations still intact.

At this point something curious occurred. The suggestion was made and for a while taken seriously, that the stones of the Bastille should be salvaged in order to construct a replica of an ancient Egyptian pyramid on the site. And although the project later stalled for lack of funds, the core idea of making a symbolic connection with ancient Egypt persisted behind the scenes. If a pyramid could not be managed something less would have to suffice. Thus it was that on 10 August 1793 a group of revolutionaries ceremoniously installed a large statue of the ancient Egyptian goddess Isis where the Bastille had formerly stood. Depicting the goddess seated on a throne flanked by two lions, the statue had been conceived by Jacques-Louis David, the famous artist and propagandist of the revolution. It was to be one of the props in a macabre republican feast hastily put together in order to celebrate the decapitation of King Louis XVI six months previously and the forthcoming guillotining of Queen Marie-Antoinette still tow months ahead.

The sculptors, Fran├žois Marie Suzanne and Pierre Cartelier, did not have sufficient time to cast the statue in the preferred medium of bronze so they simply moulded it in plaster and colored it with bronze paint. From the bare nipples of the 'goddess Isis' could be seen water being ejected into an open basin below the statue. Known as the 'Fountain of Regeneration' the general idea was for the crowd of people to pass in procession in front of 'Isis' and drink 'from her fertile breasts the pure and salutary liquor of regeneration'.

That this country is similarly steeped in Egyptian, pagan, and alchemical symbolism, cannot be plausibly disputed. Yes, we owe a lot to those cheese-eating surrender monkeys.

Convinced against all evidence that this is supposed to be a "Christian nation" radical reformationists seek to overthrow the very not Christian underpinnings laid down by our founding fathers. And their choice of dates is no accident. Their 51 days of scheduled prayer will end on 11/11/11; a date many dispensationalists believe may coincide with Armageddon.

So there has never been a better time to "Om the Dome" and honor the archetypal road-map that has been provided for us in the nation's Capitol. This country was founded on the idea that state religion was a form of spiritual oppression. I'm convinced that their notion of "liberty" was far more profound than most people realize.

These folks, on the other hand, are terrifying:

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