Serial Lesson 71
From Course VII, Spiritual Astrology, Chapter 1
Original Copyright 1935,
Elbert Benjamine (a.k.a. C. C. Zain)
Copyright 2011, The Church of Light
The Language Employed in Recording the Legacy
Source of the Legacy
Origin of the Constellations
The System Used to Denote the Zodiacal Relationship of Each Constellation
The Method Used to Perpetuate the Spiritual Teachings
Why Moderns Are So Ignorant of the Stellar Wisdom
The Religion of the Stars in Stone
Thirty-Six Decanates and Their Corresponding Constellations
Religion of the Stars Constellation Chart
Aztec Calendar Stone
Arkansas Astrological Stone
Our Spiritual Legacy
A LEGACY of untold value has been left by spiritual and
intellectual giants who labored in the dim and misty past. It is the purpose of
these lessons to transmit this priceless heritage to the people of the present
day, to whom now rightfully it belongs.
We of the present have specialized in material science, and
as a result of that specialization have possessed ourselves of mechanical
contrivances and an industrial achievement far superior to those of any People
in the past. Yet in that past there were specialists also; the equal of any on
earth today. But instead of devoting their energies to material things, their
field was that of spiritual research. And they were as far in advance of our
material scientists in their chosen field, as the material scientists of today
are in advance of their ancient knowledge of the physical properties of things.
We are where we are today in matters of physical science
because men of vast understanding like Sir Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein
have labored in research and recorded their findings for other men to read.
Were it not for the records left by those of unusual ability, ours would be a
sorry world of muddled thought.
Such records give not merely the details of information, to
which other men left to devices of their own might seldom attain, but by
revealing the correct method of ascertaining the fact they eliminate wasted
effort on the part of those who otherwise would follow many a blind trail
before finding the one leading to it. Yet because these men, who themselves
have stood upon the intellectual shoulders of other geniuses who preceded them,
have left to us their findings, there is no implication of blind belief.
Not only are their findings included in the records, but the
experiments which led to these findings also. And it was understood by them,
and is so understood by us, that all and sundry are to have full liberty to
repeat these experiments, or if they can, to devise better experiments of their
own, to test the accuracy of this recorded knowledge.
Likewise, far in the past other men of exceptional talent,
generation after generation, labored under conditions of exceptional advantage
to acquire a knowledge, not of the chemical and mechanical properties of
matter, but of the nature and possibilities, here and hereafter, of the human
To them, that which was of supreme interest was the
character of man. Other knowledge was valuable only to the extent it could be
made to contribute some thing which would enable the soul to reach a higher,
These men also, standing on the shoulders of other inspired
geniuses who preceded them, acquired vast knowledge in their chosen field, and
of this knowledge they left a careful record.
In here setting forth this record, and something of the
methods they employed in reaching these facts, there is no implication that
anyone should accept their findings in the spirit of blind belief. No more so
than that he should thus accept the findings of our chemists that each molecule
of water contains one atom of oxygen and two atoms of hydrogen.
It would require more than one lifetime to perform every
experiment recorded in the chemical treatise to be found in our libraries.
Nevertheless, they have been performed by others, and anyone is at liberty to
perform such of them as he chooses, again and again to his own satisfaction.
The laboratory of Nature is always open. Whether it be a
problem in Euclid, the law of falling bodies, the influence of the planets on
human life, or the survival of the personality in the spheres of the beyond, he
who is willing to perform the requisite amount of labor need take no statement
of fact on faith. Nor was it the desire of the ancient masters of spiritual
science that he should do so.
The Language Employed in Recording the Legacy
These records left by the wisest men of a very ancient time
could not, of course, have been written in the English language. Even the
writing used by the Maya, a race yet surviving, and conquered by the Spaniards
only about 400 years ago, can but be deciphered now sufficiently to reveal
dates and their astronomical learning. The meaning of the more conventionalized
characters is quite unknown.
The most ancient form of writing is the pictograph, in which
the thought to be conveyed is actually, although perhaps roughly, pictured.
Until modern schools were introduced, the American Indian often made use of
such writing. To represent good hunting, for instance, he merely painted or
carved on a rock the picture of deer and other game.
The scope of true pictographs, however, is too narrow to
recommend their exclusive use among a people of advanced ideas. But this scope
was vastly widened through using them, not solely to picture a condition as it
actually exists, but to represent other things with which the pictured object most
commonly is mentally associated.
To indicate in our desert region, that there was a
water-hole in a certain direction, the American Indian traced on a rock a line
in that direction. Where the line ends is the water-hole; for every Indian
trail, in such a region, ends only at a water-hole.
In such writing he has gone beyond simple pictograph and
employed universal symbolism. He has not felt the need of picturing the water
or the water-hole. He knows that the end of a trail in every Indian�s mind is
associated with a water-hole. When he pictures where the trail ends, he thus
conveys to any other Indian the information that there water can be found. Such
picture writing can be found from Mexico to Canada throughout the arid region.
We say, "The pen is mightier than the sword," to convey the
idea that the written thought is superior to warfare. This also is universal
symbolism, even though it be not pictured by a broken sword lying beneath an
Thus in addition to that which can be recorded as a picture
there is also that which can be recorded orally. The myths and legends and
folklore of the various peoples of the world often are very interesting as
stories. But in addition to their entertainment value, which is given to them
to insure that they shall be perpetuated, they also, quite as much as a picture
drawn on a rock, convey ideas of more serious import.
Either pictures or stories may have a certain attractiveness
of form; but pictures are not drawn, nor stories perpetuated, by primitive
peoples except as they are employed to give expression through pictograph or
universal symbolism to important thoughts which there is a desire to convey to
And because the attributes of objects are fairly constant,
as are also their common associations, thought conveyed in such a manner
remains clear and understandable across intervening centuries and regardless of
race or clime. It is in such language as this, whose meaning does not pass
away, nor changed by time nor place, that the sages of old recorded their
Source of the Legacy
Few details persist of the civilizations that once existed
on the land area over which now rolls the waters of the Pacific. This land,
called Mu by some of the peoples deriving from it, and termed Lemuria by those
of the present day who find evidence that the lemurs had their origin there,
probably was inhabited by several races in varying stages of culture.
That it actually existed there is abundant geological,
biological and ethnological evidence to prove. Such proof, however, belongs
more properly to Course XII-I, Natural Alchemy: Evolution of Life, where the
origins of life forms and human cultures, and there spread from centers of
dispersal, are considered in some detail. But as a lot of nonsense has found
its way into print about this Pacific land area it may not be amiss to indicate
that The Problem of Lemuria, by Lewis Spence, is a book based upon scientific
findings, and is consequently free from the wild speculations written as fact
that too frequently are outstanding features of other books on the subject.
There is even more abundant evidence that Atlantis once
occupied some portion of what is now the Atlantic Ocean. Atlantis, by Ignatius
Donelly, was written many years ago, but is still a good book. The History of
Atlantis, by Lewis Spence, brings the findings down to date, and is
authoritative. But as in the case of Lemuria (Mu), what we know about the
inhabitants of this ancient land rests wholly on tradition.
That somewhere on the earth there was a people of
intelligence and prowess superior to the Neanderthal Man who inhabited Europe
during glacial times is not tradition, but positive knowledge. When the last
ice sheet receded sufficiently to make the climate of Europe a little more
attractive, the Cro-Magnon race invaded that area and exterminated its more
primitive inhabitants. The indications are that they came out of the west. In
cranial capacity and physique, as shown by their abundant remains, they were
the equal of any race on earth today.
Also in America, as soon as the great ice sheet had receded,
a people arrived from somewhere. They were not Indians, and apparently their
culture extended to the Atlantic seaboard. Their flint points were first turned
up in 1925 near Folsom, New Mexico, along with a type of bison now extinct.
After the place where first discovered, they are called the Folsom people.
Equally certain it is that there existed some people in the
distant past who knew vastly more about the unseen world, about spiritual laws,
and about the influence of astrological energies upon human life than does the
modern scientist. This is just as certain, and for the same reason, as that
there were Cro-Magnon and Folsom people. Portions of this knowledge persist,
and are being uncovered from time to time, in various areas of the world where
long ago they took lodgment.
Just where the Stellar Wisdom first was practiced, and from
whence it spread, there is as yet no conclusive evidence to enable us to
decide. That in forms which are but modifications of an identical original it
was present at the very beginning of the seven ancient centers of
civilization—Egypt, India, Crete, Peru, Mexico, China and Chaldea—it is easy to
demonstrate. And experience proves that wherever a particular biological form,
or a culture having many complex yet identical interrelating factors, is
present in different areas of the world, it had its origin in a single region
Atlantis and Mu certainly existed, and it is quite probable
that each was inhabited by several races, some member of one of which perhaps
rose to great heights in spiritual knowledge. But as a naturalist, and a
student of the development and dispersal of new life forms on earth, I find no
evidence on which to base the popular conception that the inhabitants of these
ancient lands were skilled in the construction or use of machinery. Nor do I
believe they were the equal of present-day astronomers in making precise
In the Great Pyramid of Egypt, and in some of the embankment
mounds of the Mississippi Valley of America which seem to employ the same
formulas, astronomical proportions and cosmic knowledge are included which have
a vast range. We do not know just how vast, because as scientists of the
present day make new discoveries regarding the structure of our universe, it is
revealed that such also are included in these monuments to the wisdom of the
On the whole, however, in so far as there is any evidence to
indicate, in the work the ancients contemplated they had no need for, and did
not use, the minute precision which marks the work of present-day laboratory
scientists. Their knowledge of astronomical ratios and cosmic relations was
derived from applying the Law of Correspondences with the aid of their highly
developed psychic faculties, rather than through the use of refined mechanical
contrivances such as are employed today.
They were interested in the various factors, seen and
unseen, with which the universe abounds, as they relate to human life and
destiny, here and hereafter. And it is to their everlasting credit that they
worked out a mathematics, and formulated methods of procedure, which were
adequate to meet these practical requirements.
Origin of the Constellations
Without setting the date when the method as we know it, and
as it has passed down to us through the Chaldeans and the Greeks was perfected,
nor attempting to decide how much and when it may have been modified in its
passing, we can trace the road traveled by these ancients who left to us our
Arkansas Astrological Stone:
We can do this with great confidence because we know that
the purpose for which they studied astronomy was to be able to chart
astrological influences as they affect human life, and to correlate spiritual
truths with these observed influences. All the more positive can we be in thus
following their steps because most of the methods they used are still similarly
employed in some portion of the world today.
We know, for instance, it was desirable in that ancient
time, as it is desirable today, that some point be fixed upon from which to
reckon the days in the year, and from which to indicate the east-and-west
position of the objects to be seen in the heavens. One cannot, very well, refer
to the place of an object along a circle either a circle of days or a circle in
the sky—unless there is some established point to reckon from.
The ancient astrologers of almost every land, as far back as
we can trace them, seem to have recognized the earth to be round. Aristotle,
who dominated scholasticism from the fourth century BC until after the time of
Copernicus in the sixteenth century AD, held and taught this view.
Eratosthenes, the librarian at Alexandria, who died 196 BC, measured the size
of the earth�s globe; and Hipparchus, born 160 BC, working from the accepted
idea of the Chaldean astrologers that the earth is a globe, and from his
observations that the Sun varies in the speed of its orbital progress,
demonstrated that the earth does not lie at the center of the Sun�s (we now
know apparent) orbit.
It was Christian dogma, misinterpreting, certain biblical
passages, which forced its followers in many localities—although Aristotle was
still considered the better authority by many scholars—on pain of punishment to
accept a flat earth with four corners.
Because a conspicuous star is so easily located, such may at
first have been chosen, to mark the line extending southward from the
apparently immovable Pole Star, from which the positions eastward of the other
stars could be located. The conjunction of the Sun with this star also could
have been used to start the year. But in time it was found that some stars have
a motion relative to others, and that the position of the Sun on the longest
and shortest days of the year was shifting westward among the stars.
It became apparent, therefore, that the best point from
which to locate stars and planets in reference to east-and-west, and from which
also to commence the year, is the place in the heavens occupied by the Sun when
the days and nights are equal. And as the spring is looked forward to with such
eagerness by people who have felt the oppressive weight of winter, the Vernal
Equinox was the one chosen.
Because it is the best starting point, it is still so used
by astronomers; both the timing and east-and-west positions of the stellar
bodies being stated by them as so far from the Vernal Equinox, or first point
The Religion of the Stars Constellation Chart:
They draw a line from the Pole Star directly south through
the point on the equator where the Sun crosses it. This line, called the Prime
Meridian, cuts off the old year and the old circle of stars. It is 0 hours of
Sidereal Time, 0 degrees of Right Ascension, and 0 degrees of Zodiacal
Longitude where it cuts the celestial equator. It is thus the point both where
and when a new cycle starts.
It had been observed that people born within 30 days after
this chosen starting point, that is, from March 21 to April 21, were
aggressive, used their heads when taking the offensive, and were given to leadership
and to "butting in" on the affairs of others. In selecting a symbolical
pictograph to represent these Aries qualities nothing seemed so appropriate as
When it was found that people born in the following 30 days,
from April 21 to May 21, were slow to anger, but violent and headstrong when
once aroused, that they did not turn aside from obstacles, but stubbornly
crushed their way through them by force and perseverance, the Bull was selected
as best representing these Taurus traits.
The pictures thus selected to convey the outstanding
qualities of those born under each 30-degree section of the path of the Sun
were traced in the sky as stellar constellations. These constellated pictures
are not each 30 degrees in extent, as are the signs which they describe. Some
are more and some are less than 30 degrees. Yet a pictograph system must
portray the first major division of the zodiac with the first constellation,
and the second major division with the second constellation in the circle,
wherever these may have shifted in the precessional cycle.
It was also anciently found, and made constant use of by the
Chaldeans, that each of these twelve signs could be divided into three
sections, and each of these sections, which were called decanates, had a distinct
influence of its own; only less pronounced than that of the sign itself.
Thirty-Six Decanates and Their Corresponding Constellations:
Therefore, to express in pictograph writing the influence of
these 36 sections of the zodiac, embracing 10 degrees each, the ancients traced
the 36 ultra-zodiacal constellations in the sky.
And in placing these symbolical pictographs of the influence
of the 36 decanates of the zodiac in the heavens, they used the same system as
they did when they traced the pictures of the 12 signs. That is, the first
ultra-zodiacal constellation pictured the first 10 degrees of the zodiac, the
second ultra-zodiacal constellation pictured the second 10 degrees of the
zodiac, and so on.
Modern maps of the sky have many more than 48
constellations, because with the study of modern astronomy, kings and notables
desired something placed in the heavens to remember them by, and the
astronomers were accommodating. But the Greeks visited Chaldea and brought home
the celestial sphere of the Chaldeans. And these old Greek sources show only
the 48 constellations given in the illustration of The Religion of the Stars Constellation Chart .
To form 48 distinct pictures, both north and south
hemispheres of the heavens were used. To place pictures covering much of the
two hemispheres on a single plane surface in their true relation to their
distance from the commencement of the zodiac causes pictures of one hemisphere
greatly to overlap and obliterate the outlines of pictures of the other
hemisphere. Hence, if the pictures of all 48 constellations are given on a
single page, their true positions must be distorted.
The illustration on page thus gives the ancient picture of
each of the 48 constellations in correct detail, and proper proportion as to
size; but moved sufficiently from its true place in the zodiac that the
complete picture can be shown. The relation to the particular section of the
zodiac which each ultra-zodiacal constellation represents in pictograph, is
here denoted by the symbol of the sign to which the decanate belongs, and by a
number showing whether it relates to the first, second, or third decanate of
this sign. The diagram of the Thirty-Six Decanates and Their Corresponding Constellations
shows this relationship fully.
The System Used to Denote the Zodiacal Relationship of Each Constellation
Modern astronomers, because their work largely relates to
observation, find it more convenient to locate positions in the heavens east
from the Prime Meridian. Thus, the east-west positions of the planets and stars
are given in the Nautical Almanac for each day of the year in terms of Right
But a vast amount of observation both ancient and modern—the
Anu Enlil Series of the Chaldeans, which recorded both the positions in the
heavens and the coincident events which happened on the earth, alone extending
unbroken for over a thousand years—has made it clear that it is the position of
a planet along the path of the Sun, and not its distance eastward from the
Prime Meridian, which determines its influence upon human life.
Not only the signs of the zodiac and their decanates are
measured along the path of the Sun, called the ecliptic, but the aspects that
are formed between the planets, both in a birth chart and by progression, are
calculated along this path. The same point which is cut by the Prime Meridian
is used as a starting place, that is, the first point of Aries; but the line of
reference instead of extending south from the Pole Star through this point,
extends south through it from the Pole of the Ecliptic. The distance from the
Vernal Equinox, and from this line of reference, along the path of the Sun, or
ecliptic, which a star or constellation is, is called its Zodiacal Longitude.
Because it is the Zodiacal Longitude or a heavenly body,
instead of its Right Ascension, which determines its influence over human life,
astrologers do not use the positions of the heavenly bodies as they are given
in the Nautical Almanac in erecting and progressing birth charts. Instead, they
use an astronomical ephemeris, in which the ephemeris maker has conveniently,
and by means of a simple formula, converted the Right Ascension positions of
the Nautical Almanac into the Zodiacal Longitude which is required in all
Now as astrologers of every age have used the Zodiacal
Longitude positions of the heavenly bodies in their work—the star tables of
both Hipparchus and Ptolemy including such zodiacal longitudes it is apparent
that if they wished to indicate the order of sequence of pictures drawn in the
sky they would use Zodiacal Longitude to indicate it. And that is just what we
find they did.
The outlines of these pictures are not suggested by the
contour of lines of stars. The pictures are imposed over star groups where
their sequence would correspond to the same sequence of the sections of the
zodiac which they were drawn to explain. The boundaries of the constellated
figures, consequently, are quite arbitrary.
Modern astronomers, in ignorance of their true purport, have
expanded some of the constellations to embrace adjacent areas, and contracted
others to allow for the inclusion of new ones not recognized in ancient times.
Thus, in the matter of their size and sequence no reliance can be placed upon
modern astronomical atlases.
Fortunately, about 1820, Alexander Jamieson published in a
school atlas the pictured constellations of the ancients, with Longitude,
Declination, Right Ascension, and Latitude of each correctly mapped for that
year. Jamieson obtained these from some large, highly emblazoned, foreign
monkish charts, which were reduced according to scale. Whence Jamieson obtained
these old celestial maps, no one appears to know. But they are the most authentic
maps of the ancient heavens we now possess, and are to be found reproduced in
Henry Melville�s Veritas, published in London in 1874, which only recently has
gone out of print.
We are under no obligation to accept the Ram as the proper
picture of the influence of the first 30 degrees of the zodiac; or that the Sea
Goat, able to swim in water, travel on the land, and scale the mountain
heights, correctly portrays the diplomatic qualities and vaunting ambition of
our Capricorn friends, over whom the tenth 30-degree section of the zodiac
holds particular sway. Yet our everyday astrological observations convince us
that these pictographs have been given their proper allocations.
Nor do we need to rest on any arbitrary method of sequence
to convince ourselves that the pictured constellation corresponding to any
decanate of the zodiac really portrays the significant quality over which that
10-degree section has special influence. Thousands of astrologers are using
these decanate influences in their work. They have found that the picture and
its Keyword accurately describe the influence of each.
Thus when we trace the manner in which they were given their
proper place in the sky, we find it was after the system most direct and easily
Starting after the first constellation which was to picture
the first 10-degree section of the zodiac, no matter how far north or south the
following ones were placed, the first point of their pictured outlines touched
by Zodiacal longitude determined their order of sequence. According to this
simplest of methods the second constellation, picturing the second decanate of
the zodiac, was placed so that the portion of its outline nearest 0 degrees
Aries was second in Zodiacal Longitude. The tenth ultra-zodiacal constellation,
picturing the tenth decanate of the zodiac, in that portion of its outline
nearest to 0 degrees Aries, was tenth in Zodiacal Longitude. And the
thirty-sixth ultra-zodiacal constellation, Cassiopeia, picturing the last
decanate in the zodiac, was as farthest removed in the Zodiacal Longitude of
that portion of its outline nearest 0 degrees Aries, following eastward around
The proper order of sequence, both according to the Zodiacal
Longitude of the most westward point in the outline of each ultra-zodiacal
constellation and according to the findings of research in natal astrology, is
given in picture and in diagram in the illustrations of the Thirty-Six
Decanates and The Religion of the Stars Constellation Chart .
The Method Used to Perpetuate the Spiritual Teachings
The objects sought by the ancients in these pictures,
however, were not merely to portray the influence of a section of the zodiac
over human life, but also to set forth the particular spiritual teaching which
was equally related to the same zodiacal section.
Each position in the sky that had an influence over human
conduct, to them implied that there should be a definite teaching which
revealed how the individual could overcome the threatened danger, or how he
could take fullest advantage of the spiritual opportunity offered.
Natal astrology was not ignored. It was used as an avenue by
which to make life on earth more successful, to the advantage of the individual
and of society as a whole. But it was never lost sight of that the soul existed
before incarnation in human form, and that it would continue to exist and function
after the dissolution of the physical body. Therefore, they deemed it of even
greater importance to know the spiritual trends associated with each
astrological position than it was merely to know its influence as affecting the
It was these spiritual teachings which defined the relation
of the soul to other entities and to the cosmic whole, as revealed by the
influence of the various sections of the zodiac, that the wise ones of old most
earnestly desired to perpetuate, and to pass on to coming generations as the
most valuable of all possible bequests. Yet the amount of information which
could be conveyed by a single symbolical pictograph was narrowly restricted to
the ability of others coming later to interpret it.
There is, however, also an oral form of universal symbolism
commonly employed by primitive people. It conveys information through the
avenue of a story. Therefore, to make correct interpretation of the pictographs
drawn in the sky more certain, and to give details that were difficult to
incorporate in such pictures, those who traced the constellations wove about
each a symbolic story.
These stories, modified by time and custom though they are,
still clearly reveal their correct stellar relationship. Some of the
constellations and some of the stories, like those relating to Halloween and
the destruction of the world, to May Day and the May Pole Dance, and to the
Great Bear that circles the northern pole, are to be found among the people of
every continent. Others are now less universally known; yet still are to be
found as the cherished myths of certain peoples.
Thus it is that the sacred literature and the sacred customs
retained by various peoples, when collected and interpreted according to the
universal symbolism employed by those who gave them origin, afford a clear
exposition of the Stellar Wisdom of the past. Racial memory, even though their
meaning has long been lost, still feels their sacredness, still feels that they
have spiritual import, and still preserves them, even as lifeless cloaks from
which the vitality they once embraced, and which rightfully they still should
clothe, has long since departed.
In each of the twelve chapters to follow, using the same
universal symbolism in reference to the zodiac that was employed by those who
first traced the constellated pictures, and using the stories about the
characters thus pictured that are still retained in myth, legend and sacred
custom, I shall indicate the spiritual teachings which originally were attached
to one of the zodiacal constellations and the three constellations picturing
its decanates.In each instance I trust to be able not merely to indicate the
spiritual doctrine taught by a constellation, but to point out the obvious
implications of the universal symbolism employed by those who drew the picture
in the sky and told a story to still further explain its purport. And I hope to
do this in so clear a manner that the reader can easily discern the process
followed by the ancients in thus perpetuating their findings, and that he will
be able to recognize in each instance just why they adopted the picture and
story employed, and thus to discern how wisely they selected each as best
fitted to transmit the idea they wished to convey.
Why Moderns Are So Ignorant of the Stellar Wisdom
Their wisdom in using pictures among the stars which the
vandal hand of man has been unable to erase, and stories which have persisted
in sacred literature, or like that of Santa Claus, in spite of the accepted
sacred literature, is not merely demonstrated by the history of the past, but
by events of the present day.
It has been the almost universal custom of those who rose to
power, for the purpose of fastening their own pet religious beliefs upon the
minds of their followers, as completely as possible to destroy all records and
remembrance of every preceding religion. Even the name, as well as the beliefs,
of Akhenaten, that most spiritual ruler of Egypt, was chiseled from temple and
tomb wherever found.
In the Alexandrian Library, founded by Ptolemy Soter about
300 BC, had been collected, in so far as vast resources and research could
obtain it, the written knowledge of the world, reputed to represent 700,000
volumes. It was over these scientific documents and treasures of literature, in
so far as they had been collected, that Eratosthenes had been brought from
upper Egypt to act as custodian. No wonder he could measure the globe and lay
down precedents for finding latitude on the earth�s surface which in principle
are still followed by the mariners of our day!
When the Roman emperors adopted Christianity, they saw in
this great body of scientific knowledge and spiritual tradition a menace to the
blind belief they demanded of their subjects. They destroyed the Alexandrian
Library, and not content with burning books, they demolished all statuary,
wherever found, that would give any inkling of the wisdom of the past. Of the
Alexandrian volumes that escaped the ravages of Imperial Rome, the Mohammedans,
equally as fanatical in their desire to preserve only the Bible and the Koran,
made short work as they invaded westward.
When America was discovered, it was rich in astrological
wisdom. But the decree went out that every vestige of that knowledge, which was
looked upon as diabolical, should be destroyed.
In The Church of Light Quarterly I have published
articles—Stellar Religion and Healing of Akhenaten (Egypt); Stellar Religion of
Southwest Indians; Astrology of the Aztecs; Posidonius and Chaldea; Itzamna,
Great Initiate of the Maya; The Arkansas Astrological Stone; etc.—in which has
been set forth in considerable detail the Stellar Wisdom of various peoples in
so far as it has been uncovered by modern research. These articles are
available in the book, Astrological Lore of All Ages by Elbert Benjamine.
In this course, therefore, the stellar attainments of
particular peoples will receive no consideration. Instead, the attention will
be devoted to indicating the spiritual doctrines which in part measure were
retained by all, in much larger measure by some and in lesser measure by
others, and in full measure probably only by the most enlightened few.
Even the detailed explanation of the Aztec Calendar Stone
which forms the lower illustration on page must be referred to the article on
Aztec Astrology. Suffice it here to say that it is a single season calendar by
which not only the day of the year, but the zodiacal position of both Sun and
Moon could be ascertained on that day. Too large to destroy, as it is of
basaltic porphyry eleven feet, eight inches in diameter, and weighs some
twenty-four tons, sometime between 1551 and 1559 after the execution of such
Aztecs as were known to possess historical or astrological knowledge, Friar
Alonso de Montufar had the stone secretly buried.
No one suspected its existence for over 200 years until in
1790, when some workmen, excavating in the Plaza Mayor, unearthed this huge
testimonial of astrological knowledge, and it now rests in the Mexican National
The picture above it, preserved by Veytia, gives the names
of the 13 days in each week, and the seven weeks in each season, the dots
being, of course, the universal symbols for the number of the week or day. It
is thus, together with the universal symbolism in its center, merely a less
conventionalized reproduction of the same factors sculptured on the Aztec
All four seasons of the Aztec Solar-Lunar calendar have been
preserved to us by Diego Duran, who paid for his disregard of Spanish orders by
being burned alive. The sketch, which was included in his "History of the
Indians of New Spain," written earlier than 1588, is reproduced at the lower
left-hand corner of the illustration on page . The diagram at the lower
right-hand corner of the illustration explains just how it was used to find the
relation between Sun and Moon on any day, and to find when any given aspect of
Moon to Sun recurred throughout the year.
At the upper right-hand corner of the illustration on page
is the Triskelion Calendar used by the Aztecs, as preserved by Clavigero. By
its means the Aztecs, and other people who used it, could determine any
distance in the future or the past, when an eclipse would occur and where
visible, also when New Moons would occur, and which house of the chart they
In the lower center of the illustration is a sketch of a
date stone found on a Tennessee tomb, which employs both the Triskelion and the
Swastika Calendars, after the Aztec manner, to record the time of an important
burial. To left and right of it are Triskelion and Swastika symbols as commonly
found in Europe.
The main part of the illustration on page represents the
Arkansas Astrological Stone. It was found a few years ago by a boat builder on
the bank of Lake Hamilton, which is formed by damming the water of the Ouachita
River near Hot Springs, Arkansas.
This Astrological Stone, although using quite different
names for the 13 days in each week, and for the seven weeks in each of the four
seasons of the year, employs the same method, and determines the relation of
Sun and Moon on any day of the year in precisely the same way, as does the
Aztec Calendar Stone. In addition there are other symbols which relate to the
astrological practice and the occult knowledge of the mound builders. These are
fully explained in the article.
There is no call, I am sure, to give further instances of
the fanatical endeavors which at various times have swept all important lands
in the effort to obliterate all knowledge of preceding beliefs and customs; for
we can see the process now in operations. Soviet Russia has placed a ban on God
and religion; the Scopes trial made it illegal to teach evolution in the
schools of Tennessee; and Hitler, dictator of Germany, not content to decide
the religion his people must adopt, has made it illegal even to possess any
book or literature relating to astrology.
The Religion of the Stars in Stone
Yet in spite of the ease with which, for the most part, the
more intricate astrological knowledge could be destroyed, so enthusiastically
did the people of late prehistoric times build their monuments to the four
chief tenets of THE RELIGION OF THE STARS, that the combined vandalism of
subsequent ages has failed appreciably to remove them.
Huge stone monuments commemorating the stellar belief are to
be found wherever there is land in a belt extending entirely around the world.
Thousands of them, embracing four different types, still stand. In England, in
France, in Egypt, in Mesopotamia, in India, in Peru, in Mexico and in the
United States, there exist these stupendous stone records of beliefs inherited
from a still more ancient people.
Even as the zodiac is divided by solstice and equinox into
four quadrants, each represented by an arm of the swastika and presided over by
the Bull, the Lion, the Eagle or the Man, so the ancient Stellar Religion had
four corresponding outstanding doctrines, which like the quadrants of the
swastika (see illustration page ) united in the complete circle of spirit to
express a single all-embracing spiritual doctrine.
Dome-shaped mounds were used for magical ceremonies and for
initiation. They are so used today by primitive peoples, the kiva of the
Indians of the Southwest being a single example of many that can be cited.
These were places where they went to demonstrate the hidden powers of the mind.
The sign Taurus, governing one quadrant, is the exaltation
of the Moon, ruler of Mentality and of the feminine in nature. It is an earthy
sign, and the dome of earth often was provided with a small entrance to the
interior. Here then we have a teaching regarding the gestation of thought, and
a record of the belief that man, through the proper exercise of his mentality,
can control his own life and destiny, here and hereafter.
Huge, straight shafts of rock, upright like the rays of the
midday Sun, symbolize the virile masculine powers which are associated with the
sign Leo, which governs another heavenly quadrant. The house Leo naturally
occupies in a birth chart is the one concerned with pleasure, love affairs and
The love of husband for wife and of wife for husband is a
most holy and sacred thing, and is one of the most constructive forces that man
can utilize. The love of parents for their children approaches the deific in
its sanctity, and germinates the seed of that unselfish love that alone makes
immortality possible. These straight shafts of stone, and the round towers
which dot the globe, both record the belief of an ancient people that love is
the way to life.
A horizontal slab supported by two or more pillars presents
the form of a doorway. These dolmens are more than doorways, for the
conspicuous feature of their construction is the flat, table-like surface
presented by the slab held thus high above the ground. It strikes the eye at
once as a plane, a plane above the earth.
The third quadrant of the heavens is presided over by
Scorpio, ruling the house of death in a natural birth chart. In its higher
aspect it is pictured as an eagle. Thus does the slab of stone supported by two
pillars indicate that death is the doorway to a higher plane of conscious
existence, and that passing through it man ceases to crawl in the dust like a
scorpion and soars, like an eagle, to a life of greater power and freedom.
Aquarius, presiding over the fourth quadrant of the zodiac,
measures the influence of the stars with one hand, while water running from his
urn flows down upon the earth even as do the vibrations of the planets.
Huge concentric circles of stone portray the orbits of the
planets. These cromlechs, as they are called, bring to us the same message that
is revealed by the constellation of the Man. They attest to the belief of
those, who at the cost of tremendous labor erected them, that the planets have
an influence over human life and destiny.
When these four ancient doctrines are united, their mutual
implications become as obvious as that a circle is formed by the united
zodiacal quadrants. The whole, as a logical necessity, then becomes summed up
as the spiritual admonition, CONTRIBUTE YOUR UTMOST TO UNIVERSAL WELFARE.