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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Notes on the Nephilim

THERE is a good argument for including Book of Enoch in the general canon - as it is has always been in Ethiopia. It is one of the older Old Testament books and there are references to it in the existing Western canon. In the Book of Enoch is a wonderful description: (The Manicheans also had a version of this tale, entitled The Book of Giants.)

The Book of Enoch:
Chapter 6
And it came to pass when the children of men had multiplied that in those days were born unto them beautiful and comely daughters. And the angels, the children of the heaven, saw and lusted after them, and said to one another: 'Come, let us choose us wives from among the children of men and beget us children.' And Semjaza, who was their leader, said unto them: 'I fear ye will not indeed agree to do this deed, and I alone shall have to pay the penalty of a great sin.' And they all answered him and said: 'Let us all swear an oath, and all bind ourselves by mutual imprecations not to abandon this plan but to do this thing.' Then sware they all together and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it. And they were in all two hundred; who descended in the days of Jared on the summit of Mount Hermon, and they called it Mount Hermon, because they had sworn and bound themselves by mutual imprecations upon it. And these are the names of their leaders: Samlazaz, their leader, Araklba, Rameel, Kokablel, Tamlel, Ramlel, Danel, Ezeqeel, Baraqijal, Asael, Armaros, Batarel, Ananel, Zaqlel, Samsapeel, Satarel, Turel, Jomjael, Sariel. These are their chiefs of tens.

Chapter 7
And all the others together with them took unto themselves wives, and each chose for himself one, and they began to go in unto them and to defile themselves with them, and they taught them charms and enchantments, and the cutting of roots, and made them acquainted with plants. And they became pregnant, and they bare great giants, whose height was three thousand ells: Who consumed all the acquisitions of men. And when men could no longer sustain them, the giants turned against them and devoured mankind. And they began to sin against birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and fish, and to devour one another's flesh, and drink the blood. Then the earth laid accusation against the lawless ones.

Chapter 8
And Azazel taught men to make swords, and knives, and shields, and breastplates, and made known to them the metals of the earth and the art of working them, and bracelets, and ornaments, and the use of antimony, and the beautifying of the eyelids, and all kinds of costly stones, and all colouring tinctures. And there arose much godlessness, and they committed fornication, and they were led astray, and became corrupt in all their ways. Semjaza taught enchantments, and root-cuttings, 'Armaros the resolving of enchantments, Baraqijal (taught) astrology, Kokabel the constellations, Ezeqeel the knowledge of the clouds, Araqiel the signs of the earth, Shamsiel the signs of the sun, and Sariel the course of the moon. And as men perished, they cried, and their cry went up to heaven . . .

There is a more detailed description of the fate of the Nephilim- here termed the hosts of Azazel:

Here is an excerpt:

Chapter 54
"And I looked and turned to another part of the earth, and saw there a deep valley with burning fire. And they brought the kings and the mighty, and began to cast them into this deep valley. And there mine eyes saw how they made these their instruments, iron chains of immeasurable weight. And I asked the angel of peace who went with me, saying: ' For whom are these chains being prepared ? ' And he said unto me: ' These are being prepared for the hosts of Azazel, so that they may take them and cast them into the abyss of complete condemnation"
And now, from C.G.Harrison's
The Transcendental Universe 1893:

"It was a fall of the angels of light, the "sons of God" who "saw the daughters of men that they were fair" and united themselves to them in the bonds of matter. This fall from heavenly to earthly love brought them immediately under the dominion of Satan, the prince of this world, and inaugurated on earth the reign of physical and intellectual force.
"This union of intellect and form was the origin of the arts and sciences. Civilization advanced by leaps and bounds, but it was a curse rather than a blessing. By the time the Fourth Root Race, with its physical and intellectual giants, had reached the apex of its development, the whole earth was filled with violence, and the great cataclysmic period, known as the Flood and preserved in the traditions of all nations, swept them and their children away.
"These semi-human creatures, the progeny of the fallen angels, are known in the Hindu Scriptures as the "Asuras" and are sometimes called "Rakshasas" or demons, but they are quite distinct from the offspring of the "incubi" and "succubae" who spring from the element of water (not, of course, material water, but the aqueous or static principle of the universe).

"The Asuras are igneous, or dynamic, in their nature, and their power for evil was terrific. It was destroyed for ever by the advent of Jesus Christ, and they are now, as St. Jude puts it, "reserved in everlasting chains until the judgment of the great day."'

"Stated in scientific terms, they are held in check, unable to move backward or forward......

"This text in S. Jude has been unfortunately misunderstood, and supposed to apply to Lucifer and the first fall of the angels-hence the Miltonic and mediaeval myths."

From A.E. Waite's The Secret Doctrine in Israel:

First the argument over the creation of Adam:
"There was another class, the downfall of which was consequent on the Holy One assembling several legions of superior angels and advising them that He intended to create man. They appear to have replied by quoting the Psalmist when he said: "Nevertheless man being in honour abideth not: he is like the beasts that perish."
"Thereupon the Holy One stretched forth a finger and burned these blessed legions, after which He called others into His presence and made the same statement, to which they answered on their part: "What is man that Thou art mindful of him and the son of man that Thou visitest him."
"The Lord explained that man should be made in His image and would be superior to those whom He addressed. It does not appear what happened to these legions. There were, moreover, those Sons of God who "saw the daughters of men that they were fair," and they included Aza and Azael, who entered into a dispute with Shekinah on the advisability of creating Adam, seeing that he would end by sinning with his wife, to which Shekinah replied that before they could make accusations of this kind it must be postulated that they would prove more chaste in their own persons.1

"This was the conclusion for the moment, but the children of God had recourse to the daughters of men and "took them wives of all that they chose."
"The result was that Shekinah stripped them of their sanctity and of all part in eternal beatitude, which had been the case also with the rebellious angels belonging to the first category: these are burnt eternally in Sheol.

"When Aza and Azael were cast down, they assumed bodies on earth and were imprisoned therein. 2

"It was subsequently-according to this version--that they were seduced by women and are alive at this day, still instructing men in the art of magic, which they had begun to teach soon after their descent. They were chained on certain black mountains, which Laban and Balaam frequented for instruction in the forbidden art.
”There were in all five orders of intelligence which seem to have been cast out of heaven, and some of these were incarnated as men. These were the Giants of Genesis, the Nephilim, the descendants of Amalec, the Intruders of the Talmud, and so forth. It is on record that they destroyed the Temple.

Notes to the above:
1 Certain codices of the Zohar cause the Shekinah to intimate at this point that Adam will indeed end by sinning with a single woman, but it will prove also with her that 'he will be able to repair the fault,
while the lost angels will sin with many women and will be deprived of all reparation.

2 They belonged to that class who appeared under the form of men, and it was possible therefore for them to exist on earth. They assumed bodies to come down and because of their revolt they could not unclothe to reascend. By their union with women they engendered giants, the "mighty men of old," and "men of renown," mentioned in Gen. vi, 4.”
According to Harrison, the Nephilim are the Rakshasas or Giant Demons of the Hindu tradition. If you look up "Rakshasas" in Theosophical literature, you will get more of the story.

In H.P. Blavatsky's The Secret Doctrine, there are many explanations for this race of the Rakshasas in Oriental esoteric philosophy. See, for instance: The Secret Doctrine, Book 2, p. 288, where it speaks of ‘Rakshasas’ (giant demons) and Daityas (Titans).

Rudolf Steiner, The Temple Legend, Berlin, 10th June 1904:

"It was a sin when ‘The Sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair’ and took them wives; they took them wives from the daughters of Cain.

"From this union resulted a race of men which is hardly even mentioned in the published books of the Old Testament, but is only hinted at; it is a race that is not perceptible to physical eyes. It is called ‘Rakshasas’ in occult language and is similar to the ‘Asuras’ of the Indians.

"It consists of demonic beings who really did exist at one time and who acted seductively upon the human race and caused its downfall. This flirtation of the Sons of God with the daughters of men produced a race which worked particularly seductively upon the Turanians, the members of the fourth sub-race of the Atlanteans, and led to the destruction of humanity. Some things were preserved and carried over into the new world. The Deluge is the flood which destroyed Atlantis. Men who were seduced by the Rakshasas disappeared by degrees.

"And now I have to tell you something which will in any case appear extraordinary to you, which is particularly important. It has been an occult mystery for the outside world for many centuries and will seem incredible to most people, but is nevertheless true. I can assure you that every occultist has often convinced himself of its truth through what is called the Akashic Record. But so it is.

"These Rakshasas were real beings, they really existed — actively and effectively — as seducers of mankind. They continued to influence human desires until the time when Christ incarnated in Jesus of Nazareth and the Buddhi principle itself became present on the earth in a human body. 

"Now you may believe it or not: this is something of cosmic significance, of significance which reaches beyond the earthly plane. It is not for nothing that the Bible expresses it thus:  ‘Christ descended into the forecourts of Hell.’ It was not human beings He met there, He was confronted by spiritual beings. The Rakshasa beings were brought thereby into a state of paralysis and lethargy!

"They were at the same time kept in check so that they became unable to move. They could only be lamed in this manner because they were being opposed from two sides. That would not have been possible if there had not been two natures combined together in Jesus of Nazareth: on the one hand the old Chela nature, deeply connected with the physical plane, which could also work effectively on the physical plane and through its power could hold it in balance: on the other hand there was Christ Himself who was a purely spiritual being.

"That is the cosmic problem which is fundamental to Christianity. Something occurred at that time in occult spheres; it was the banishment of the enemies of mankind which has its echo in the Saga of the Antichrist, who was put in chains but will make his appearance again, if not opposed once more by the Christian principle in its primal force.

"The whole occult striving of the Middle Ages was directed towards nullifying the effect of the Rakshasas. Those whose vision extends to the higher planes have long foreseen that the moment when this could happen might be at the end of the nineteenth century, at the transition from the nineteenth to the twentieth century.

"Nostradamus, who worked from a tower which was open to the heavens, who brought succour during the Great Plague, was able to foretell the future. He wrote a number of prophetic verses in which you can read about the war of 1870 and several prophecies about Marie-Antoinette which have already been fulfilled. In these ‘Centuries’ by Nostradamus (Century 10, 75) the following prophecy can be found: At the close of the nineteenth century a Hermes Brother will come from Asia and bring unity to mankind. The Theosophical Society is nothing less than a fulfillment of this prophecy of Nostradamus. The annulment of the Rakshasas and the reestablishment of the primal mysteries is an aim of the Theosophical Society.

"You know that Jesus Christ remained on the earth for ten years after His death.  The Pistis Sophia contains the profoundest theosophical teachings, it is much more profound than Sinnett's Esoteric Buddhism. Jesus incarnated again and again. His task was to renew the mystery wisdom. This is no mere fact of cultural or historical interest, but it is the fact I have described to you, which is well known to all occultists, namely, the struggle against the Rakshasas. You see there is a deep and important occult secret lying hidden therein.

"You might ask: Why is that said in allegorical form and not stated openly? I must here remind you that the great teachers of humanity such as Moses, the Indian Rishis, Hermes, Christ, the first Christian teachers, all adhered to reincarnation. And this allegorical way of communicating wisdom had a good reason. When, for instance, the Druid Priest spoke of ‘Nifelheim’ or ‘Ymir the Giant’ and so on, that was, of course, no mere piece of poetic folk lore."

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