Brian Sullivan

Writer Philip Gardiner claims that the Temple of Solomon was in fact really a temple to all the worlds deities and that its message is to return to a balance of universal feminine energies symbolized by the snake cults of the past.
He advocates the reclaiming of the esoteric experience of the divinity within us and attempts to take us on a journey through the secret societies of the past in search of an underlying message.
His first step is the mystery cult known as the Gnostics – a group seen as heretical to Christianity and alluded too in the New Testament. Gardiner alleges that orthodox history, written by the victors, distorts the original history of Judaism and Christianity.
Rather, the revealed original truth is described as a multilayered expression of our existential world.
He points to the legend that St Patrick removed all the snakes from Ireland explaining that there were no snakes to begin with, but rather a snake cult was removed from the lanf by Patrick's missionary activity.
Gardiner claims this serpent image, as expressed by the Hindu Kundalini, is an androgenous female creative element that formed life without a male principle, an axis mundi passing through hell, earth of heaven in perpetual copulation through the three realms. Certainly, the snake represents rebirth, death and mortality, due to its casting of its skin and being symbolically "reborn" in many religions.
The macrocosmic solar system is reflected in the mini solar system of the nucleus and the outer reality a reflection of the inner world.
This Christ of the Gospel , according to Gardiner, is not historical, but rather a truth inside of us - a type of archetype.

Quoting the Emerald Tablets words, ‘So above so below’ Gardiner suggests these universally held archetypes link the universal mind and the quantum field so often spoken of in recent self help literature.
Gardiner suggests that the meanings behind the Bible makes no literal sense, rather it reflects an esoteric reality. These ‘enlightened experiences’ can be induced by drugs or by physical and mental stimulus.
Can these esoteric events allow us to access the quantum mind and influence human evolution/
The question though is do these events allow an access to the quantum mind and can it influence our evolution?
Gardiner describes the serpent as the symbol of universal energy and heaking kundilini. He then goes on to point out the use of the serpent symbol in the bible.
For example, Moses is depicted in as healing the Israelites of snake bite by making a fiery copper serpent.
IIs the serpent a universal symbol of energy and healing kundalini This fiery image of Moses is depicted in art and Jesus is portrayed as a type of Moses in the New Testament.

The book of Genesis chapter 3 describes an early quest for knowledge when Eve (Hebrew. Chava) listens to a serpent and partakes of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad. According to Gardiner this ‘being like god, knowing good and bad’ refers to knowing the truth within that is married to the union of serpent energies depicted in ancient serpent myths. The ability to access these truths were either banned or simply forgotten by religious hierarchies.
The real truth, according to Gardiner, is the need to unify the dual masculine and feminine energies within each of us.
Rather than describing historical realities, Adam and Eve are the dual energies within man. The Serpent-tree of life image is certainly not unique to Genesis. In many myths the serpent (sometimes a pair) lives in or is coiled around a Tree of Life situated in a divine garden.
The trinity doctrine of Christianity, according to Gardiner, symbolizes the union of the divine as one, the male and female energies united.
The Bible is a collection of older ancient beliefs, and the torah emerged from oral traditions, according to Gardiner.
The Kabbalistic masterwork The Zohar, writes of a radiance of dine light reflected in Torah. Not discussed by Gardiner is the symbol of fire the passionatestriving to reach for God. The soul yearns the upward call for God as does the upward fight of a flame.
Gardiner refers to the ancient waters of Genesis and correctly links them to the quality called Hochmah in Kabbalah. However, he does not attempt any explanation of the fundamental principles behind this, nor refer to the language of branches, fundamental to understanding Kabbalah.
Rather he links Sophia, the wisdom that allows the knowledge of the tree of Genesis to bear fruit. He then notes that Mary is often depicted in a boat stating that water is often a symbol of wisdom.
He states that Mary means water, although the meaning is far from certain. It is tue that the Lainised name Mary . means "star of the sea" and Jerome associated the Virgin's name with the Latin phrase "stella maris". It is probably derived from the Hebrew Miriam that has been claimed to derive from meri and am ("their rebellion") or even Bitter Sea according to Jerome from the Hbrew mar (bitter) and yam (sea). According to the Catholic Encyclopedia attempts to derive the meaning ‘star of the sea’ from Hebrew “usually explain it as consisting of two nouns: mor and yam (myrrh of the sea); mari (cf. Daniel 4:16) and yam (mistress of the sea); mar (cf. Isaiah 40:15) and yam (drop of the sea). But these and all similar derivations of the name Mary are philogically inadmissible”.
My point is that to link the name Mary’s name to older stories may not be so clear and Gardiner jumps from one philological similarity to another without establishing the proof of his claim.
Gardiner then links the Asherah, the sacred pole, condemned in torah, was a symbol of the divine union. Asherah he links with the serpent Lady Tanis.
He then suggests a philological link to Chava (or Eve) as a remaking of the serpent. The sacred pole of the Asherah mimic the sacred tree, Tree groves were often used in Canaanite worship, and pole and snake are often found entwined in ancient belief. Many have theorized that the fiery copper serpent of Moses on a pole is a representation of this image.
Gardiner points out that there is a dearth of archeological evidence for a temple in 1oth century BCE Jerusalem. He notes that the Knights Templar probably tried to find the ark that Jewish legend claims was hidden under the temple.

He interprets the Temple as symbolic and argues that Solomon’s temple was in fact a symbol of worship of all the divinities of the world, brought together by the multitudinous wives of Solomon.
On the one hand he state not temple existed in Solomon’s time and yet makes unproven assertions of their being a pantheon of gods worshipped there.
Feminine energy has been associated with powerful times of creativity in history. The highly important 11-12th centuries were periods of Mariology, mysticism, writers like Hildgard of Bingam as well as a rise in science and economic theory.
He suggests that Saint Bernard was influenced by Islamic mystery schools. That is an over simplification. He does not explain the importance of this. Islamic and Christian mysticism do however borrow from the idea of a passionate bonding to God expressed in the Song of Solomon.
How does Gardiner link the Temple of Solomon to serpent worship?
Gardiner notes that the standard of the tribe of Naphtali is a serpent. Actually Genesis 49:21 links Naptali to a hind, however, Gen 49:17 states ‘Dan shall be a serpent by the way’.
He then points out that Solomon’s contemporary, King Hiram who helped supply the temple construction, is also said to be of have some heritage to the tribes of Dan and Naptali. He also claims that the name Hiram links to snake worship – a meaning flatly rejected by scholarship. However, there are many stories about this man. Jewish tradition tells conflicting stories about Hiram however he is depicted in legend as having great age and beginning to deify himself because of it stats the Jewish Encyclopedia. Ity should be noted that legends have merged together the king Hiram and a master craftsman sent by the king to construct the temple and fabled in Masonic traditions.
This half Jewish, half Phoenician king is said to have had the strange Shamir a worm or a substance that had the power to cut through or disintegrate stone, iron and diamond. No metal was allowed to be used to cut the stones used on the temple and this mystical substance cut the temple stone.
Gardiner accepts without question the worm serpent symbol. Although notingthat Velikovsky suggested the Shamir was radioactive Gardiner sees the Temple and the Shamir is esoteric symbols.
Some link Hiram to Ashmedai, a prince of demons, whom King Solomon’s chief assistant, Benaiahu Ben Yehoyada, tricked into parting with the Shamir. Hence Gardiner links Solomon’s Temple to ancient mysteries.

Gardiner then compares the legend that Camelot was cut by the fire of the dragon, again aludingto the serpent as symbol of wisdom.
Gardiner then tries to link the name hiram (exalted above the people) to biblical Abraham. He claims Hiram also means exalted snake that Abraham means Ab Hiram. This is very speculative as there are no examples of the word Abraham outside of Abrahamic religion.
The Jewish encyclopedia debates the possible meaning of Abraham however it concludes “There is no evidence that Abram is a shortened form of Abiram. As to the meaning of Abram, the first element is undoubtedly the common Semitic for “father”; the second could be derived from Akkadian ra’├ómu (“to love”) or from West-Semitic rwm (“to be high”). “He loved the father” or “father loves” is a far less likely meaning than “he is exalted with respect to father” i.e., he is of distinguished lineage. The meaning “exalted father” or “father is exalted,” while less satisfactory, cannot be ruled out.”
What is Gardiners point here?
He argues that the stories if the temple link to ancient psychological archetypes. He poijts out that none of the Knights Templar’s many structures depict the crucifixion, adding to the Church claim they were heretics. Gardiner alleges the crusaders discovered hidden texts (without offering proof) that proved the temple was a metaphor that he links back without proof to the Masonic baphomet he claims derives from baphos - baptism and messs - wisdom. Ann emersion into own inner wisdom, the heresy that of the life within.
According to Gardiner the truth of Christianity is hidden in this metaphor. Moses is linked to a serpent. Hiram is linked to a serpent. Jesus is linked to Moses, and claims that he would be raised as Moses raised the serpent.
The Bible gives a brief account of a visit of the queen of Sheba who solon gave all she desired. There are myths that Solomon and Sheba had a child. The Ethiopian monarchy claimed to be descended of their union. Gardiner argues that Solomon and Sheba, who Gardiner links to serpent worship, are symbolic of united bonding of the masculine and feminine archetypes within man expressed in a polytheistic temple. The queen of Sheba is a symbol of the Asherah entering the temple as serpent queen. Sadly he offers no proof of the assertion; especially since he also points out that the archeological evidence suggests the people could not have built such a temple in Jerusalem.

However, this does not stop him then comparing this story to King Arthur marrying the queen of serpents who was the offspring of a stolen seed.
Just as Solomon’s people fragment after him, England fragments after King Arthur. The feminine is lost and the power declines.
He claims these links prove that the Crusaders prove the truth of the Temples serpentine origin. However I suggest his grabbing at evidence does not prove causative link. Association is not always proof of causation.
A thin woman may wear a bikini however that does not mean that wearing a bikini makes a woman thin.
Nevertheless, it is possible to find a psychological element in the most esoteric interpretation of the Bible.
The temple is for Gardiner a psychological tool that is purely symbolic, just as the Freemasons see the temple as transcendent. Sadly Gardiner does not discuss the Jewish concept that in person is in himself a temple. some of the ideas of a spiritual temple is found in Torah and Kabbalah and is hinted at in the Christian description of the body as a temple. This is derived from Exodus 25:8-9 "And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell in them”.
Sadly Gardiner seems to grab lots of bits and pieces and claim there are links that he does not attempt to prove.

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