The Secret of the Holy Grail and the Discovery of the Elixir of Life (cont.)
By Philip Gardiner and Gary Osborn
Three levels of our Grail re-analysis
So, with all this in mind we needed to completely re-appraise the whole mythos of the Grail and what we were to find was startling.
There is the obvious tradition that the Grail is a journey, a method of self improvement and we looked into all the texts we could find with this Gnostic viewpoint in mind. We found that this was completely correct and that Grail literature was in reality hiding the Gnostic traditions of the “mixing of the opposites”.
This is in essence where the split personalities of the “mind” are re-joined repetitively in-order to “make the perfect man” – symbolised by alchemists as the Androgyne or Hermaphrodite (Hermes and Aphrodite, man and woman united within us). The process is of course much deeper than this and would take too long to explain in full, suffice it to say that this mixing procedure occurred in the “brain” and therefore the skull, and was envisaged in colours symbolically as red and white.
This brain or skull location became apparent in other cultures from where the European Gnostic ideas had also arisen, one of these being the Tantric Skull cups of India and even in the story of Christ as he spills his sacrificial blood at Golgotha – the place of the skull.
In essence the whole mystical process was virtually the same the world over and is commonly known today as the Kundalini. This is an Eastern tradition of attaining enlightenment and means coiled serpent. It is the method of raising up twin serpents through a specific psychological process until one is completely illuminated – obtained the Grail. In each case, from around the world, this process related to the serpent or snake or dragon, each one being for this mythical purpose the same thing. It can be seen clearly today in the infamous image of the Caduceus upon medical insignia, ambulances, hospitals and elsewhere. It can also be seen in the powerful representation of the Uraeus serpent, which emerges from the forehead of the Egyptian pharaohs.
Now what we discovered during the course of our research was the amazing occurrence of the serpent in myth, folklore and religion across the entire world and in every period.
We can see its origins even as far back as ancient Africa where even today the serpent is pinned to a tree or cross as a sacrifice for the community. This is a continuance of a system, which stretches back in time for thousands of years. It is a symbolic element but it also has a practical level, as we shall see. Even as late as the 16th century there were German coins caller Thalers with Christ on the cross on one side and a snake on a cross on the reverse. The image was said to depict the “all-healer.”
We can also see the serpent influence in the Bible as early as Adam and Eve. Believe it or not, Eve actually means female serpent, coming from the root hawwah or hevviah, and is derived from, amongst others, the goddess Ninlil the Sumerian serpent deity also associated with the goddess Asherah, who was seen in the Temple of Jerusalem as a tree entwined with serpents. Even the constellation “serpens” was called “little eve” by certain Arabs.
Adam was fabled to be the father of Seth, who was called the “Son of Serpents”.
The serpent was not bringing mankind down at all – he was making Adam and Eve like “God”, he was bestowing the ultimate knowledge. This is Gnostic language for the very knowledge to be found within oneself via the union of the male and female opposites and a whole process of psychological growth imaged as the Kundalini.
We even see the ultimate image of Godhead or enlightenment in the aura or halo seen around the heads of saints. This image we show derived from the hooded cobra of India as a symbol of immortality and divine serpentine wisdom.
In Malta we uncovered elongated skulls of certain priests dating right back to the Temple building era. These skulls were created using planks of wood on the heads of babies, in-order to make the individual appear serpent headed, with long drawn eyes and stretched skin. These people were known as serpent priests and the elongation of the skulls made the glands in the brain secrete certain mind or consciousness-altering inducing hormones, beneficial to the enlightenment experience and altered states of consciousness.
Of course Malta itself is overrun with serpent folklore, the latest being that of St. Paul. This is a story created in the 13th century whereby St. Paul is said to have shipwrecked on Malta and subdued the vicious serpents and then to have gone on and healed people with his new found serpentine power. Of course none of this happened, but you can’t knock the Christians for their marketing skills.
Having now, we believe, sufficiently proven the fact of worldwide serpent worship, and basically reinforced what certain Victorian scholars had failed to bring full weight to because of Christian fear, we moved on and into each and everyone of these traditions.
In each case the serpent or snake was a symbol of wisdom and immortality.
The wisdom element of the serpent could now be explained via the “awakening” of the “coiled serpent” or Kundalini process, but this did not entirely explain the immortality aspect of the serpent symbolism. For an explanation of this we had to turn to science, and it was really here that the whole process had started in the first place.