Summer Solstice 1988 E.V.
Tiamat and Marduk
Do what thou
wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
Recently a certain Wiccan High Priestess
and I were having a discussion and the subject of the Assyrio-Babylonian
mythology of ancient Mesopotamia became one of the topics we pursued. In
particular we discussed the characters of Tiamat and Marduk with the idea
of employing such names as "Magical Names". Neither of us thought that
Marduk would be a favorable choice since a Magical Name is a kind of Oath.
It is supposed to represent one's True Self and one's True Will to the
best of one's knowledge. Furthermore, choosing the name of a god or hero
out of myth is a very tricky thing since one is then likely to lead the
life of that character. Choose the name Heracles, for instance, and it
is very probable that your well-meaning but insecure wife will be the death
of you! In the case of Marduk, the lady and I primarily thought of the
name in the astrological sense, supposedly the planet that exploded to
create the present asteroid belt which Aleister Crowley attributed to the
Abyss with the idea of a shattered ego and dispersion. We were also aware
of Marduk as the slayer of Tiamat and who then became a rather Jovian or
Jehovian character. This is all, however, somewhat beside the point.
The lady and I also shared a chuckle over
another woman involved in the Craft who, because of her androphobia, feminizes
everything that is within her reach, completely eliminating all masculine
concepts from her universe, which, as would be the reverse, is a very unbalanced
thing to do. This lady claimed that Marduk's destruction of Tiamat represented
the overthrow of the matriarchy by the patriarchy. Actually she is not
entirely wrong, but her perverse point of view blinds her to the true nature
of that "slaying".
Tiamat was symbolized by the dragon and
she was called the primordial ocean and chaos. Chaos is often thought to
be "evil", "disorder", but in fact it is, more accurately, the Unmanifest
containing the possibility of all forms of the Manifest. It is a state
of Pure Being untainted by material creation. Chaos, or Tiamat in this
instance, is that state of being that is more pure than Unity for it is
Naught. That is to say, Tiamat may be attributed to Ain of Qabalistic philosophy,
that which is beyond Kether, and so to NUIT, the Goddess of Infinite Space
and the Infinite Stars therein according to Thelemic philosophy.
Tiamat, the supreme aspect of the Goddess,
is called the primordial cosmic ocean, and this "monstrous" personification
of the sea (which may also then attribute Tiamat to Binah, the Great Salt
Sea of Sorrow, the Supernal Mother), mingled with Apau, the cosmic sweet
waters beneath the earth, perhaps attributed to HADIT, the compliment of
NUIT, and from this mingling of the salt and the fresh waters the first
gods, such as Anum and Ea, were created.
In this Mesopotamian system, which has
many similarities with the Egyptian system, and which, as time went on,
became just as complicated and confused with the multiplication and fusing
of god-forms, Enki (Ea), one of the gods created by this union, slew Apau.
Having already given human emotions to these anthropomorphic gods it is
easy for us to understand that Tiamat was very angry over the slaying of
her mate, her compliment, and why she wished to take revenge upon the gods
that they had created and which had so ungratefully replied to that creation.
Therefore Tiamat waged war upon these younger gods who then turned to Marduk,
one of their company, and asked him for help. Marduk said he would slay
Tiamat if the other gods gave him supremacy over them and they agreed.
According to one source, two implements in particular were used by Marduk
to destroy Tiamat. First Marduk blinded the dragon with a magical disk,
which is naturally the sun-disk, his symbol as a sun-god, then he slew
her with a spear, which is the warrior's equivalent of the wand, symbol
of the creative will, procreation, in turn symbolized in humankind by the
phallus. Tiamat was then split open and her body cut into pieces from which
the universe, heaven and earth, were created, and from the blood of Kingu,
her marshal, as this particular creation myth goes, men and women, all
of humanity was created to serve the gods. It is worth noting that Marduk
had the assistance of the Seven Winds to "destroy" Tiamat. (Wind, Breath,
Spirit, even Mind in relation to the Hebrew Ruach, are all symbols of the
same concept. The ancients, before they understood the nature of human
reproduction, believed that the wind impregnated women. Recall also in
Genesis and elsewhere in the Judeo-Christian Bible and other sources how
life is breathed into a person, as well as the descent of the Spirit, in
some bestial form--dove, bull, and so forth--impregnates mortal virgins
in various mythologies.)
Often Tiamat is considered "evil" and/or
"dark" and Marduk "good", a power of "light", but this is a typically naive
but understandable point of view. Actually the moralistic idea of "good"
and "evil" does not apply. These concepts are, as are all concepts, relative
to one's point of view. Certainly Tiamat felt herself justified in destroying
her children who slew their father, her husband! As for Chaos being "dark",
it was/is, but it is also "light", and yet in the union of the two apparent
opposites, neither darkness nor light. Simply put, Chaos is Naught!
We might say that Tiamat represents the
He (H) of Tetragrammaton, Apau the Yod (I), Marduk the Vau (V) and Enki
or Ea, perhaps a masculine corruption or version of a name somewhat similar
to Ge, Ga or Gaia, Earth, is He-final (H). IHVH. Father, Mother, Son and
Daughter. (Note: Enki or Ea was said to come from the sea to Sumer and
impregnate Ninhursag, "the mother of the land".)
Enki first slew Apau, that is to say Apau's
original purity was destroyed--the word "purity", of course, having no
moralistic connotations in this place.
As for the slaying of Tiamat by Marduk,
well, this solar god, called "the bull-calf of the sun" and later symbolized
by the Musrussu dragon, first employed the solar disk then pierced Tiamat
with the spear, the wand, the phallus, which in fact impregnated her. The
struggle is an ancient symbol for the so-called "war of the sexes", the
natural struggle between the male and the female which are in some ways
complementary, but by the very fact of their complementation different
and sometimes antagonistic toward one another. The fact that Tiamat was
impregnated is obvious since from this "struggle", this ecstatic union,
the heaven and the earth were created, given birth. It is interesting to
note that in this creation myth humankind is created from the blood of
Tiamat's fallen marshal. As it is said, "the blood is the life", and blood
in such a context represents seed or semen. As for the destruction of Tiamat,
she was not utterly destroyed--her original purity was destroyed. The Unmanifest
became Manifest. Spirit took form in Matter.
Marduk awakened the sleeping Chaos--son
united with mother.
Enki or Ea awakened the sleeping waters
of Apau--"daughter" united with father.
Again, this complicated family system should
not be interpreted moralistically, as the formula of IHVH should not be
In a sense, first there was Tiamat, matriarchy,
which was later dominated by patriarchy, but it is this very union which
will eventually bring about--which HAS brought about--the New Ĉon wherein
the female is considered the co-equal, as A.C. put it, of the male. Neither
being superior nor inferior to the other. Existing in a Balanced state
of Harmony and Beauty (reference to Tiphareth, Vau, the "Son", which in
Thelemic philosophy is Heru-Ra-Ha, the union of Ra-Hoor-Khuit, the positive
Lord of Speech, and Hoor-paar-kraat, the negative Lord of Silence).
It might be worth our while here to investigate
the various names in this drama, this Play of Our Lady Nuit, by means of
transliteration and gematria.
Turning first to the Hebrew because of
the affinity with Mesopotamia we have the following spellings, numerations
and attributions implied by words bearing the same numeration. (See the
Key elsewhere for English equivalents to the Hebrew alphabet.)
MARDUK: MRDVK = 270 = I.N.R.I., attributed
to the sun/son-god, "Jesus".
APSU: APSV = 147 = IHVH, ADNI AHIH, AGLA,
the Four Names in the Lesser Ritual of the Pentagram.
ENKI: ANKI = 81 = ALIM, Gods; and ANKI,
I (Ex. XXIII.20). Or HNKI = 85 = HMM, Put in motion; and PH, Pe, the mouth,
which is actually the symbol for another orifice, the kteis. Please note
the position of the "tongue" in the Hebrew letter.
EA: H = 5 = BG, Back; and being the 5th
letter of the Hebrew Alphabet; or AH/HA = 6 = the Mystic Number of Binah
(1+2+3); GBA, To gather or collect; and HA or HE, the 5th letter of the
Hebrew alphabet, meaning "a window".
TIAMAT: TIMT = 68 = ChKM, To be wise; VIBN,
Wise; and ChLL, Emptiness. Or ThIMTh = 850 = ThMThI, My perfect one. (NOT
written) (Cant. V.2).
Let us now turn to the Greek and see what
that has to offer. (Again, please check the Key elsewhere for the English
characters representing the Greek alphabet.)
MARDUK: Mardyk = 565 = to kenon, the void,
space; aneklaleton, that cannot be expressed in words; eleytheria, freedom,
liberty, all of which identify Marduk, the "slayer", with Tiamat, the "slain",
just as he was later identified with Tiamat through his symbolic representation
as the dragon. Also: metron, measure, degree, quantity; ypedeixa, make
known, that which Marduk accomplished through the "slaying" of the Vast
Unknown Without Measure. And Dendron Bios, the Tree of Life, that which
he manifest through the "slaying"; aspidos, a snake; Abba o pater, Father,
my father (Mk. 14.36; Ro. 8.15; Gal. 4.6 of N.T.); and Narydi, Narudi,
an Akkadian spirit, "lord of the great gods", whose image was placed in
houses to ward off wicked people, all of which refer to Marduk, the first
as the virile god, next the supreme god, and so for the third, Narudi,
upon a lower plane.
Also, if Upsilon (y here, 400) is replaced
by Digamma (F, 6) we have the following:
Mardfk = 171 = aor, a sword; oar, a consort,
mate; kalon, good, proper; and krima, the power of authority to judge,
referring, respectively, to Vau of Tetragrammaton (IHVH) and his function
as a warrior, Marduk as the "slayer" or mate of Tiamat, the fact that all
of this is proper or natural, and his supremacy gained from the "slaying"
of the great cosmic dragon of Chaos, Tiamat.
APSU: Apsy = 1101 = thaymatopoion, wonder-worker,
conjurer, juggler; gnomes, the purpose, intent, will; AOT (AFT),
"Male-Female Spirits", to be found in Liber Samekh, all of which point to the nature
of Apsu; ekkechymai, to pour out or shed blood, abandon oneself to; martysin,
a martyr, Apsu's nature; apokalypteria, unveiling, and his accomplishment
through union with Tiamat.
And again if Digamma replaces Upsilon:
Apsf = 707 = logon theoy, God's word (which
creates); sandarakinos, bright-red, the colour of the dragon in Revelation.
ENKI: Enki = 85 = oida, I know, destroying
the essentially Unknown by knowing it and thus making it the Known; gamma,
the third letter of the Greek alphabet as, in part, a reference to the
Earth; endeka, eleven, the number of Magick, referring to the formula implied
Or: Hnki = 88 = Nike, Victory personified
as the Goddess Nike.
EA: Ea = 6 = F, Digamma, or Vau, the Son;
as well as abba, the father; and Ada, one of Lamech's two wives; and ea
itself is essentially "ah!", an exclamation of wonder and pleasure.
Or: Ha = 9 = aza, dryness, heat, mould;
but more importantly, gea, earth.
And finally we make a full circle, so to
speak, returning to:
TIAMAT: Tiamat = 652 = lymainomai, to destroy,
to treat with indignation or outrage, to persecute, as well as to be maltreated
or destroyed. Note that 6+5+2 = 13 = Achad (AChD), Unity, the perfect expression
of which is Naught!
There is also another possible spelling
of TIAMAT which is: Tiamath or Thiamat = 361 = anti, opposed to (partly),
which the Unmanifest is to the Manifest, in a manner of speaking; timia,
precious, highly repsected, and so therefore she should not be considered
as a gross concept such as "evil"; admete, untamed, unmarried, her nature
as pure, undisturbed Chaos; o pais, the child, which is within her--the
Unmanifest filled with all-possibility in Manifestation; aneleos, merciless,
her primordial nature, especially when aroused; and sarx, the physical
body, flesh, humankind, earthly life, the realm of existence, the sexual
impulse, all of the Unmanifest potential for Manifestation that resides
Let us now return to the quiet calm and
silence of the Great Unmanifest of Tiamat or NUIT, having thus Manifest
being in so many forms, but before retiring let it be said that "good"
and "evil" are relative concepts, pertinent only to the human mind, and
that very often that which is considered "evil", such as the Dragon of
Chaos, Tiamat, the most supreme aspect of the Goddess, is actually a most
sacred arcanum hidden by the veils, behind the guise of moralistic "evil".
The only true "evil" in existence is IGNORANCE.
Love is the law,
love under will.
Just as a matter of interest--a
certain Goddess of Mesopotamia called Innin, the Akkadian Ishtar, is also
called Inanna. While there existed a certain perverse cult of Inanna in
which the priesthood emasculated itself (and we know of a eunuch or two
today who worships this Goddess in a perverse manner!), the Goddess herself
is most interesting. She is associated with Venus and has collected within
herself the attributes of several goddesses, thus becoming Queen of Heaven
and Earth, the aspect recognized in Wicca as she who descends to the Underworld,
divesting herself of her garments and insignia as she goes, a Mother Goddess,
Mistress of all the Gods (i.e. a Holy Whore!), the Lady of the Worlds,
Giver of Vegetation, Creator of Animals, Goddess of Sexual Love, Marriage
and Maternity, and interesting to the Thelemite in "The Exaltation of Inanna",
a Sumerian hymn, she is described as "the Lady mounted on a Beast", often
depicted in art as mounted on a lion, and furthermore, there is the name
Nanna which is said to be that of the Moon God, otherwise called Nannar
or Sin (note the similarity to Cynthia, a Greek name for the Moon
Goddess), yet this name, Nanna, also seems to be a variation of Inanna.
The paternal Yod merely being dropped. This name, Nanna, transliterated
into Hebrew would be NANNH or Nun Aleph Nun Nun He, i.e. 50+1+50+50+5,
which comes to the numeration of 156, the numeration of BABALON, both in
Greek and Hebrew--the Scarlet Woman or Whore that rides the Beast 666.
(This article was originally published
in the December 1987 E.V. issue of WEIRD, Volume 2, Number 4. Anyone interested
in this publication should contact Ms. Goldie Brown at P.O. Box 624, Monroeville,
Winter Solstice 1988 E.V.
Babalon and the Beast
Do what thou
wilt shall be the whole of the Law.
"...I saw a woman
sit upon a scarlet coloured
beast, full of names of blasphemy, having seven heads and ten horns." Revelation,
Chapter 17, Verse 3.
Ever since John the Divine experienced
his Revelation the concept of Babalon and the Beast has been misinterpreted
as an absolute evil, despite all of the internal evidence to the contrary.
First it should be noted that there cannot be such a thing as an absolute
evil, nor an absolute good for that matter, in our relative universe. In
fact, one might say that no-thing is absolutely anything--and that is an
absolute fact! Second, while all reasons given to "prove" that Babalon
and the Beast are evil only prove to be irrational and illogical, there
is a great deal of "proof" that they are, in fact, sacred and holy symbols!
We will examine some of this "proof" by way of the science and art of gematria.
To begin: Babalon (Greek: Beta Alpha Beta
Alpha Lambda Omicron Nu; Hebrew: Beth Aleph Beth Aleph Lamed Ayin Nun,
i.e. 2+1+2+1+30+70+50) = 156, The Scarlet Woman, e Kokkine Gyne
(8 + 20+70+20+20+10+50+8 + 3+400+50+8) = 667, and the Beast, Therion
(9+8+100+10+70+50) = 247, and his number is of course 666.
156 + 247 = 403, which is 13 x 31, as well
as the numeration of logikos: rational, belonging to reason, logical, (according
to some also "spiritual); presbeia: age, seniority, rank, dignity, the
body of ambassadors (according to some also "messenger/s, representative/s");
Epistata: Master (Lk. 5.5, 8.45, 9.49; st = 6).
156 + 666 = 822, the numeration of agiazo:
sacred; oi pharmakoi: those who practice Magick (Re. 22.15)--note that
pharmakon means "a medicine, drug, remedy; a charm, spell, enchantement,
any secret means of effecting a thing; a means of producing something",
while pharmakos means "one who is sacrificed as a purification for others",
i.e. a scapegoat; aphtharsia: imperishability, immortality; Setheys, Hidden
Place, That in which are all things surrounding the twelve Paternities,
in the midst of which It dwells (Gnostic); stegazo: house--a possible reference
to Beth, et al (st = 6). Most interestingly 822 is the numeration of Agion
Poterion, the Holy Grail, the ultimate goal of the Authurian Quest.
667 + 247 = 914, the numeration of gnonai,
to perceive, to gain knowledge, mark and to know, understand, determine,
to know, etc.; pneymatike (pneumatike): spiritual, pertaining to the spirit,
spiritual person, thing or gift given by the spirit, supernatural (Col.
1.9); theomorphon: of form divine, god-form; idro: sweat, perspiration
(see CCXX I.27); phragmos: fence--a possible reference to Cheth, et al;
eyornithos: of good augury, auspicious; Isphan Darmaz: the tutelary spirit
of the earth and the angel who presides over the month of February, the
month of Valentine's Day, and who also serves as the genius or angel for
virtuous women in Persian lore; philommeides: laughter-loving, an epitaph
commonly applied to Aphrodite (Venus), the Goddess of Love; epta salpiggas:
seven trumpets (Re. 8.6).
667 + 666 = 1333, the numeration of aggelon
aytoy (angelon autou): his angel (Ac. 12.11); pantarchas: ruler of all;
noeseos: thought, intelligence; Astanphaios: Astanphaeus, an archon of
the Ophitic Gnostic system, one of the Hebdomad; Xoybao: Gnostic; eycharistias:
eucharist (st = 6). Most appropriately, oyranoy (ouranou) kai ges: Heaven
and Earth (bound by kai, the numeration of which is 31). Most interestingly,
to paidion Iesoyn (Iesoun): the child Jesus (Lk. 2.27).
The above information provides a veritable
feast for thought and we may consider the following to be dessert.
In Revelation, Chapter 17, Verse 5, the
Scarlet Woman is called Babalon the Great, although her name is spelled
"Babylon", which, according to Thelemic philosophy is incorrect, yet either
way our rose smells as sweet:
(1) Babylon e megale = 1380 = o Oylon &
o Teleios (or o Oylon & o Oylon, or O Teleios & o Teleios): the
Perfect and the Perfect (CCXX I.45), and better yet, e agape ek toy theoy
(theou): the love from (or of) God (1 Jn. 4.7; agape, love, equals 93).
(2) Babalon e megale = 251 = Kairon: Cairo,
the city in which The Book of the Law (Liber AL vel Legis sub figura
CCXX) was delivered unto the Master Therion; katharon: pure, clean,
innocent; Ompnia: a name of the Goddess Ceres, Mother of Corn; A'athoor:
Ahathoor (CCXX III.38); Koppa: a letter in the Greek aphlabet, with the
appearance of a raised circle with a line extending from below it to the
base line, once set between Pi (P) and Rho (R), equivalent to "Q" and so
related to the Hebrew Qoph and all that pertains to it.
In Revelation, Chapter 17, Verse 3 quoted
at the beginning of this writing, the scarlet or red Beast is mentioned--this
of course being the Beast 666. (It is worth noting that the symbology in
this last book of the Christian New Testament has been confused and twisted
over the centuries and symbols have been misinterpreted, fused and in some
The Scarlet Beast, Therion Kokkinon = 557,
which is also the numeration of kathegetes: teacher, leader, Master, and
gametes: husband. By adding Babalon the Great and the Scarlet Beast together
we arrive at the following:
(1) 1380 + 557 = 1937 = katecheso:
to teach by word of mouth, teach the elements of religion; katartiseos: restoring,
restoration, a making perfect, educating.
(2) 251 + 557 = 808 = zao: live, be alive,
come back to life; peristere: a dove; ermeneys: an interpreter, dragoman,
The Beast 666, adding in the number of
the Beast, i.e. o Therion 666, comes to the numeration of 983, which is
also the numeration of apokalypta: unveiling (CCXX I.2), as well as Aster
Argos: the Argenteum Astrum or Silver Star as Therion translated it into
983 and 251 (Babalon e megale, Babalon
the Great) added together come to the numeration of 1234, an important
sequence of numbers which implies the full scope of existence, the manifestation
of All, i.e. 1+2+3+4 = 10, in relation to the Tree of Life. 1234 is also
the numeration of to thysiasterion: the altar (Re. 11.1; st = 6).
And a little random translation and calculation
Babalon kai o Therion, Babalon and the
Beast, 504 = to agathon: the good, what is good; to agion: the sanctuary,
the sacred, the holy.
Babalon kai ton Therion = 854 = o Aglaotriaines:
the God of the bright trident; Edoyardos: Edward, Aleister Crowley's given
name; epiphanes: glorious, coming to light.
H Kokkine Gyne kai Therion = 945 =
ephoros: an overseer, guardian, ruler; ocheos: a chariot--perhaps relating to Atu
VIII of the tarot.
H Kokkine Gyne kai o Therion = 1015 =
Aidos: the personification of conscience; zoes: life; agoges:
way of life.
H Kokkine Gyne kai ton Therion = 1365 =
ey poio: do good, help; phaethon: beaming, radiant, the sun.
Baffled? Bewildered? Confused? Inundated
by information? We will try to make rational sense of all this. Basically
the secret gematria coding implies that Babalon, the Scarlet Woman, and
the Beast are agents of reason and logic in a society ruled by irrational,
superstitious religions. They are ambassadors of great dignity and rank--together
Master of all life. Babalon and the Beast are sacred and holy concepts,
representatives of those who sincerely and rationally practice Magick;
they are the remedy for the illness of society, the secret means of effecting
beneficial change. Also the Beast and Babalon are the scapegoats used by
the cults of the Dying God, the religions of the Slave God, who refuse
to take responsibility for the ills of society that they have created through
ignorance and greed.
Babalon and the Beast are representatives
of the Holy Grail, the object of our quest in life, the perfect union of
the two apparent opposites.
Babalon and the Beast united represent
and affect many things beneficial and important to humankind, and while
the enemies of Thelema rant and rave nonsense of the most irrational kind
to "prove" otherwise, we can see by internal evidence, as here briefly
touched upon, that rationally, logically the truth can be proven with secret information
provided by the ancient Initiates.
Love is the
law, love under will.
RETURN TO GEMATRIA