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Upcoming Events

(scroll down for previous events):

Currently on a working vacation to write the long-promised book on Technology and the Evolution of Mankind.

An earlier book, the children’s book Dance of the Elves, is now in its second edition and available from Mercury Press for $15.

Dance of the Elves

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If you would like to arrange for any (or all) of these lectures to be presented in your local library or other venue, let me know.  Please use this form to contact me:

 

Recent Events

Secrets of Leonardo da Vinci’s Virgin of the Rocks Revealed, Springfield, MAVirgin of the Rocks - Louvre

Dec. 3 (Thursday), Noon-1 pm Lecture slides

The Springfield Art Museum, 21 Edwards St. Springfield, MA. 413-263-6800 

Enjoy an artistic investigation together in time for Christmas! Andrew Linnell, an experienced lecturer and researcher of the Ancient Mysteries, will lead us through an entertaining discussion of the mysteries revealed in the original Virgin of the Rocks. Why were there two paintings? What was da Vinci attempting to depict? Who are the characters? Are they the two Messiahs anticipated in Essene-lore? Did any other artist paint similar scenes? If so, what might this mean to our Christian theology? Many fun questions to explore with a heavy dose of beautiful Renaissance art. Note: this is not a religious lecture, rather an unusual and entertaining art history talk meant for public and academic enrichment. New findings will be shared. Dan Brown fans will enjoy this! 

Link the Springfield Art Museum’s calendar for this event

 

 

 

Spiritual Science and the Role of Technology in Evolution, Kimberton (PA) Branch of Anthroposophical Society in America

Sept. 27 (Sunday), 2 – 4 pm, no slides – this will be a daytime talk.

Venue: Rose Hall, 1601 Pughtown Rd., Phoenixville, PA.

Michael’s battle with Ahriman as manifesting in machines, robotics, and Human-Machine hybrids. What can we learn from artificial intelligence and the predictions of a Singularity. What picture of our human future is emerging? The Western Path.

Ancient Warnings of Our Destiny with Machines, Beaver Run (PA) Branch of Anthroposophical Society in America Return of Hephaestus

Sept. 26 (Saturday), 8:30 – 10 pm, possible Lecture Slides

Venue: Rainbow Hall, 1784 Fairview Rd., Glenmoore, PA

Hephaestus, the God of Technology. Automatons. Zeus, Prometheus, Epimethius, and Pandora. Sleeping Beauty. The Western Path.

 

 

 

Mankind’s Destiny with Machines, Princeton (NJ) Branch of Anthroposophical Society in America

Sept. 25 (Friday), 7 – 9 pm, possible Lecture Slides,

Venue: The Princeton Waldorf School, 1062 Cherry Hill Rd, Princeton, NJ . Check back for more info.

Human-Machine hybrids are already here. From simple software to artificially intelligent robots: what does it say about the Human?  Why must we deal with machines for our evolution? The Western Path.  Will We Become Creators?

Spiritual Science and the Role of Technology in Evolution, NY Branch of Anthroposophical Society in AmericaMan Machine final

Sept. 24 (Thursday), 7 – 9 pm, Lecture Slides, Flyer

Venue: 138 West 15th St, (between 6th & 7th Aves), Manhattan NYC 212-242-8945. Check www.asnyc.org for more info.

Will We Become Creators? From robotics to Human-Machine hybrids, artificial intelligence, avatars, and the Singularity: is this a human future? Why must we deal with machines for our evolution? The Western Path.

Dreams

This post will reveal some, perhaps unfavorable, personal traits of me. When I was a child I remembered far more dreams than I do as an adult. Occasionally I’ll remember the last dream of the night or one where I woke up during the dream and was able to make a written or visual or mental note about it so that in the morning I was able to recall the dream. Now I recall a dream from last night.

In the dream I was the person responsible for a group of people. We were in a fancy large hotel. My immediate responsibility was to get these twelve people from the hotel to their transport to some morning event. Soon the twelve had all arrived so I began to lead them to where I thought the taxi stand for the hotel existed. I knew where it was because I had, in the dream, stayed in this hotel at a prior conference (the memory of this was present to me in the dream but it was not part of a prior dream or reality that I am aware of).  Out of the hotel we wander and I soon realize that there are no taxis in front so I lead the group down the circular drive to the highway where I try to flag down a set of taxis. But there are none. Then one comes but the driver appears busy and does not even look my way. Suddenly I have an aide and she suggests I call the taxi service with whom I made arrangements. Brilliant! My dream-memory said that I had made arrangements. I pulled out my iPhone and in its ‘recent calls’ list I found the number. The driver answered the call and wanted to know where we were! I asked him where he was and he said he had a 12-person van in the taxi stand behind the hotel. I realized at that moment that in leading the group to the front I was using old data. I apologized to the driver and said “we’d be right there.” Prior to this, the group had paid no attention to me. They were chatting profusely among themselves and treating me as a mere lower class tour guide. Now they began to complain about my incompetence as I led them back into the hotel’s front entrance. I would need to find a stairway to go down one level and walk the entire depth of the hotel’s ground floor to reach the rear entrance. That’s when I noticed a clear overhead sign that stated the taxi stand was now in the rear. Some in my group also noticed and increased their condemnation of my capabilities. At this point, I woke up. It was 5 am and sunrise was just beginning.

This dream helped me to realize that when traveling and within crowds, I become inwardly tense. In this state I become less observant and less tolerant. I sometimes go into auto-pilot and rely on doing things the way they’ve always been done. But with the spiritual world, things change, evolve. The way to the taxi stand to be transported with my 12 beings was no longer where it was in my previous ‘incarnation.’ The way there is now first inwardly, first into myself to find how I am a microcosm of the macrocosm. These twelve are me as a microcosm. When I try to take care of them out of old knowledge, they ignore me. But as I get my directions aligned, I’ll receive their ‘guidance,’ as difficult as it might be to hear. For to reach the taxi stand and the transport, I will need to sacrifice this old lower self, these old habits, and this materialistic thinking. Scourging is part of the western spiritual journey.

In ancient times, dreams were more easily remembered and remembered with reverence for dreams were a gift from the spiritual world. They contained wisdom and foresight. But as humanity evolved to become self-aware, intellectual beings, the importance of dreams faded. Human destiny was for us to develop individualism, true freedom. “Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.” [John 8:32]

Now I’m trying to read the signs of our times and find that taxi stand behind the hotel [my body] with a van for twelve.

INRI and Pilate

Normally I hate to quote so much but this time it is important to set the scene as described in Matthew chapter 27:

“And when they had bound Him, they led Him away and delivered Him to Pontius Pilate, the governor. …

And Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked Him, saying, “Art thou the King of the Jews?” And Jesus said unto him, “Thou sayest.”  And when He was accused by the chief priests and elders, He answered nothing.  Then said Pilate unto Him, “Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee?”  And He answered him never a word, insomuch that the governor marveled greatly.

Now at that feast, the governor was wont to release unto the people a prisoner, whom they would.  And they had then a notable prisoner called Barabbas.  Therefore when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, “Whom will ye that I release unto you: Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?”

For he knew that for envy they had delivered Him.  When he had sat down on the judgment seat, his wife sent unto him, saying, “Have thou nothing to do with that just man; for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.”  But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask for Barabbas and destroy Jesus.

The governor answered and said unto them, “Which of the two will ye that I release unto you?” They said, “Barabbas!”  Pilate said unto them, “What shall I do then with Jesus, who is called Christ?” They all said unto him, “Let him be crucified!”  And the governor said, “Why, what evil hath he done?” But they cried out the more, saying, “Let him be crucified!”

When Pilate saw that he could not prevail, but rather that a tumult was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just person. See ye to it.”  Then answered all the people and said, “His blood be on us, and on our children!”  Then released he Barabbas unto them; and when he had scourged Jesus, he delivered Him to be crucified.

Then the soldiers of the governor took Jesus into the common hall, and gathered unto Him the whole detachment of soldiers.  And they stripped Him and put on Him a scarlet robe.  And when they had plaited a crown of thorns, they put it upon His head and a reed in His right hand, and they bowed their knees before Him and mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!”  And they spat upon Him, and took the reed and smote Him on the head.  And after they had mocked Him, they took the robe off from Him and put His own raiment on Him, and led Him away to crucify Him.

And as they came out, they found a man of Cyrene, Simon by name; him they compelled to bear His cross.  And when they had come unto a place called Golgotha, that is to say, a Place of a Skull, they gave Him vinegar to drink mingled with gall. And when He had tasted thereof, He would not drink.  And they crucified Him and parted His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet: “They parted My garments among them, and upon My vesture did they cast lots.”

And sitting down, they watched Him there, and set up over His head His accusation, written: This Is Jesus The King Of The Jews.

Then were there two thieves crucified with Him, one on the right hand and another on the left.  And those who passed by reviled Him, wagging their heads and saying, “Thou that destroyest the temple and buildest it in three days, save thyself! If thou be the Son of God, come down from the cross!”  Likewise also the chief priests mocking Him, with the scribes and elders said, “He saved others; himself he cannot save. If he be the King of Israel, let him now come down from the cross, and we will believe him.  He trusted in God; let Him deliver him now, if He will have him. For he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’”

The thieves also, who were crucified with Him, cast the same in His teeth.  Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land until the ninth hour.  And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is to say, “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”

Some of those who stood there, when they heard that, said, “This man calleth for Elijah.”  And straightway one of them ran and took a sponge, and filled it with vinegar, and put it on a reed and gave Him to drink.  The rest said, “Let be; let us see whether Elijah will come to save him.”

Jesus, when He had cried out again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

And behold, the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top to the bottom, and the earth quaked and the rocks rent. … 

Now when the centurion, and those who were with him watching Jesus, saw the earthquake and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, “Truly, this was the Son of God!”

And many women were there beholding afar off, who followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto Him, among whom were Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James and Joseph, and the mother of Zebedee’s children. When the evening had come, there came a rich man of Arimathea named Joseph, who himself also was Jesus’ disciple.  He went to Pilate, and begged the body of Jesus. Then Pilate commanded the body to be delivered.  And when Joseph had taken the body, he wrapped it in a clean linen cloth and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had hewn out in the rock. And he rolled a great stone to the door of the sepulcher and departed.  And Mary Magdalene was there, and the other Mary, sitting opposite the sepulcher.

Now the next day, that following the Day of the Preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, saying, “Sir, we remember that that deceiver said while he was yet alive, ‘After three days I will rise again.’  Command therefore that the sepulcher be made secure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night and steal him away, and say unto the people, ‘He is risen from the dead,’ so that the last error shall be worse than the first.”  Pilate said unto them, “Ye have a watch. Go your way, make it as secure as ye can.”  So they went and made the sepulcher secure, sealing the stone and setting up a watch.”

Let’s look at two themes from this story:

  1. What was the significance of the plaque above Jesus where “INRI” was written by Pilate
  2. Who was Pilate?

INRI means Jesus Nazorite Rex Judeaorum which means Jesus the Nazorite, King of the Jews.  Many translations will read Jesus the Nazarean, King of the Jews. The Greek word is Nazoraios.  It does not mean from Nazareth but, rather, the one singled out. Such an inscription meant that Pilate knew something key about Jesus – that he belonged to the secret Jewish sect, the Essenes. Books of the Essene community in Qumran are discovered in 1947 and are today known as the Dead Sea Scrolls.

In this word Nazoraios, the Alpha and the Omega are the first two vowels as well as the first and the last.  Was Jesus, from approximately age 12 to age 30 part of the Essene sect? Did Pilate know this? Does the inscription INRI point us to this?

The Crucifixion of Christ - Jacopo Tintoretto (Robusti) - www.jacopotintoretto.org

In my next post we’ll look more at Pontius Pilate who had become governor of Judea in 26 AD. After Herod, Herod’s son Archelaus ascended to the throne. But the Romans removed him as king and appointed Pilate as governor. One of the church fathers, Tertullian describes Pilate as “already a Christian in his conscience”.  To understand Pilate, we shall look at the apocryphal book Acts of Pilate in my next blog posting.

The Mystery of Cain and Abel

It is time for some mysteries to be made known.  Let’s start with an ancient mystery whose story applies today, namely that of Cain and Abel.  This quote of Genesis 4 (King James Version) from http://www.biblegateway.com will help us put the common story in our minds.

“4.  And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bare Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the Lord.  And she again bare his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground.  And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord.  And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell.  And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?  If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him.  And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

And the Lord said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother’s keeper?  And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother’s blood crieth unto me from the ground.  And now art thou cursed from the earth, which hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother’s blood from thy hand; When thou tillest the ground, it shall not henceforth yield unto thee her strength; a fugitive and a vagabond shalt thou be in the earth.  And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear.  Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the earth; and from thy face shall I be hid; and I shall be a fugitive and a vagabond in the earth; and it shall come to pass, that every one that findeth me shall slay me.  And the Lord said unto him, Therefore whosoever slayeth Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold. And the Lord set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him.

And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden.  And Cain knew his wife; and she conceived, and bare Enoch: and he builded a city, and called the name of the city, after the name of his son, Enoch.  And unto Enoch was born Irad: and Irad begat Mehujael: and Mehujael begat Methusael: and Methusael begat Lamech.  And Lamech took unto him two wives: the name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah.  And Adah bare Jabal: he was the father of such as dwell in tents, and of such as have cattle.  And his brother’s name was Jubal: he was the father of all such as handle the harp and organ.  And Zillah, she also bare Tubal-Cain, an instructer of every artificer in brass and iron: and the sister of Tubal-Cain was Naamah.  And Lamech said unto his wives, Adah and Zillah, Hear my voice; ye wives of Lamech, hearken unto my speech: for I have slain a man to my wounding, and a young man to my hurt.  If Cain shall be avenged sevenfold, truly Lamech seventy and sevenfold.

And Adam knew his wife again; and she bare a son, and called his name Seth: For God, said she, hath appointed me another seed instead of Abel, whom Cain slew.  And to Seth, to him also there was born a son; and he called his name Enos: then began men to call upon the name of the Lord.”

Of these two, Cain and Abel, which is more like you and me?  Cain labors on the earth for his keep while Abel merely watches over what is given to him by Jehovah.   While we likely would not kill our own brother in a crime of passion, we can say that we are more like Cain but that we aspire to be more like Abel.

While Cain and Abel were separate blood lines, today we can say that all humans appear to be a mixture of both.  I shall leave for later the question of when did these blood lines become united?  Why was Cain’s sacrifice rejected?  It reads “to his offering He had not respect.”  Why was there no respect for the hard-won fruits of Cain’s efforts?

This story has been an important one for many Western mystery streams in answering this question.  The Sons of Cain become the builder of cities, agriculture, music and the arts, sciences and metallurgy.  The Sons of Cain work with the Lifeless world.  Out of the Lifeless they bring the Living.

With Abel gone without any offspring, Adam and Eve conceive another, Seth, to be the progenitor of the Abel line.  The Sons of Abel take what the Divine has offered; they take it as it is without altering it.  They see the perfection of God’s work in all of Nature.  They enjoy a gift of wisdom about life and their relationship to God.  They revere and keep this relationship seeking to sacrifice to God the best of what God has given to them.  In this way, God knows His creation is well.

But Cain engineers what was given.  Cain seeks to know and to change the world.  Cain expresses egoism – but not in a way that allows him to not only engineer the world but also himself.  He is capable not only of evil but also of supreme goodness through transformation of his soul.

Let’s look a bit deeper into the roots of this.  When Eve says, after giving birth to Cain, ” I have gotten a man from the Lord” she is indicating that Cain is not from Adam but from another Elohim.  Earlier in Genesis it read”And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness”.  The word “God” here actually is the plural of the word “Elohim.” In the mysteries, the Elohim together make Man.  One, unnamed, creates Eve and then she conceives because of this unnamed Elohim.  Another Elohim, Jehovah, creates Adam.  Adam then unites with Eve to bring forth Abel.  So Cain carries an inner initiative from one Elohim while Abel carries that from another, Jehovah.  When Cain and Abel make their sacrifices, they both sacrifice to Jehovah but Jehovah cannot appreciate or respect the sacrifice of Cain.  This in itself is fertile ground for meditation.  Contemplate the effect on one’s countenance when your best fruits of your honest labor is rejected by your God.  Contemplate the soul mood of Abel and of Cain – and of Jehovah.

Confusion easily enters here because of the translation of the Hebrew word Elohim into God.  Here Elohim is plural.  The translation uses the plural terms “us” and “our”. Many early Christians believed that the God,  Jehovah, of the Old Testament, was not the same God that Christ refers to as The Father.  They found proof of this in the different levels of love expressed by Jehovah and by Christ’s Father.  For these early Christians, Jehovah was one of the Elohim while God the Father is at the height of the Heavenly Hierarchies, one of the Holy Trinity. More on this theme later.

So, according the ancient mysteries, one Elohim creates Adam while another creates Eve who is impregnated by this unnamed Elohim.  After giving birth to Cain, Eve later becomes impregnated by Adam resulting in Abel – and later still, after Abel’s death, resulting in Seth.  These form two streams of humanity – one a priestly lineage from Abel/Seth and the other a builder/warrior lineage from Cain.

I have hinted that these two streams later will unite in the mystery of Jesus-Christ.  Another important story of these streams comes in the building of Solomon’s Temple.  We’ll take up that mystery in my next blog.

Andrew

 

 

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